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An Announcement Regarding Our Campaign Against PBS's Anti-Father Breaking the Silence
April 17, 2006

An Announcement from the Leaders of the Campaign Against PBS's Anti-Father Breaking the Silence

The following is a statement from Fathers & Families, the American Coalition for Fathers & Children, and newspaper columnist Glenn Sacks, the leaders of the Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing Breaking the Silence:

"The purpose of this letter is to update you on what is happening with PBS in relation to its father-bashing documentary Breaking the Silence: Children's Stories. As most of you know, last fall we led a protest campaign against the film.

"Breaking the Silence, which aired on many PBS affiliates in late October, portrayed divorcing dads who contested custody as batterers who wanted to punish and abuse their ex-wives. It presented an extremely one-sided, harmful and inaccurate view of divorce and child custody cases.

"In response to our protest, over 10,000 people called or wrote PBS, and our campaign garnered widespread media coverage. From the beginning our demand was simple--we wanted PBS to provide fatherhood and shared parenting

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advocates a meaningful opportunity to present our side of the issue. The campaign was led by the shared parenting organizations Fathers & Families and the American Coalition for Fathers & Children, and by newspaper columnist Glenn Sacks.

"Both the Ombudsman for PBS and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) spoke out strongly against the biased nature of the documentary.  In a statement released on December 20, PBS notified us that it would 'commission an hour-long documentary' that would be 'produced and broadcast in Spring 2006' for the purpose of further examining the 'complex and important issues' raised in the film and by our campaign. Though PBS defended Breaking the Silence, they pledged that the 'hour-long treatment of the subject will allow ample opportunity' for those of differing views to 'have their perspectives shared, challenged and debated.'

"We commended PBS for understanding our concerns and taking action to address the situation. We have been in talks with the producers who are making the new film on behalf of PBS, and film crews will be filming and conducting interviews in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and other places in April.  Fathers & Families members will be filmed April 27 and 28. The producers have informed us that they are also interviewing other experts on child custody, family law, domestic violence, and related issues.

"We will keep you informed as events progress.

Ned Holstein, M.D., M.S., Chair, Board of Directors, Fathers & Families
Dan Hogan, J.D., Ph.D., Executive Director, Fathers & Families
Mike McCormick, Executive Director, American Coalition for Fathers and Children
Glenn Sacks, newspaper columnist"

The PBS Campaign

I would like once again to thank the Sackson Horde and our allies for their massive participation in the campaign against PBS's Breaking the Silence. The film was a public relations debacle for PBS, particularly after we revealed that one of the mothers portrayed as a heroic victim in the film had been found culpable of multiple acts of child abuse by a California Juvenile Court.

We will not know the exact nature of this new film for certain until the final cut is made and the film is broadcast. However, over the past several months PBS has taken steps which indicate that they intend to honor their commitment to produce a balanced program.

The American Coalition for Fathers and Children

The American Coalition for Fathers and Children is dedicated to creating a family law system which promotes equal rights for all parties affected by divorce.  Contact the ACFC at 1-800-978-3237 or visit them on the web at www.acfc.org.

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English Fatherhood Activists Strike Again

According to Reuters:

"Two fathers' rights campaigners were arrested on Friday after scaling Westminster Abbey with a crucified dummy Jesus Christ, police said.

"Two protesters demanding greater access to their children clambered up the historic landmark on Thursday with the dummy figure that wore a T-shirt bearing the words: 'Our Father Who Art in Hell.'

"The 'Real Fathers For Justice' said in a statement that they had staged their Easter protest to 'demand that both parents be as equal in family law as they are in the eyes of God.'

"A police spokeswoman said: 'They were arrested for aggravated trespass when they came down early this afternoon. They have been taken to a central London police station.'

"In January, the mainstream Fathers4Justice campaign group decided to disband after reports that police had foiled a plot to kidnap Prime Minister Tony Blair's five-year-old son Leo.

"The group, which insisted that none of its current members had been involved in any kidnap plot, had staged several high-profile protests in the past few years.

"A campaigner dressed as Batman climbed Queen Elizabeth's Buckingham Palace in 2004 and another threw purple flour bombs at Blair while he addressed parliament."

According to another report, one of the two men protesting had not seen his child for four years.

The "kidnap plot" mentioned by Reuters and every other media outlet reporting on the Westminster Abbey protest was a scam. At the time screaming headlines proclaimed "Plot to kidnap Blair's son smashed," "UK police foil plot to kidnap Blair's son," and "Scotland Yard uncovers plot to kidnap Blair's son."  These illustrate Mark Twain's assertion that "a lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes."

Major media worldwide--including CNN, the Associated Press, the BBC, Fox News, Reuters, and hundreds of newspapers--reported that extremists tied to the British fathers' rights group Fathers 4 Justice planned to kidnap British Prime Minister Tony Blair's five-year-old son Leo. Yet subsequent reports reveal that the sensationalized kidnapping 'plot' was apparently nothing more than drunken pub chattering among a few fools and loudmouths who evidently didn't realize they were being monitored. Not a single arrest has been made.

Nevertheless, this non-incident is and will for many years be used to portray the fathers' movement as violent extremists. It is certainly true that fathers' groups do attract a lunatic fringe. But most fathers' activists are decent, loving dads who can't quite believe that the family law system so readily allowed them to be driven out of the lives of the children who love them and need them.

Fathers 4 Justice's always nonviolent campaign has included many daring, highly publicized protests atop cranes, bridges, and government buildings. The grievances which drive them and activists in the US, Australia, and Western Europe are very real.

I have repeatedly defended Fathers 4 Justice's tactics and encouraged their extension into the United States. To learn more, see The Future of the American Father, my address to the 2004 Men's Rights Congress in Washington, DC. In my speech I said:

"Fathers 4 Justice has shown that men CAN fight for themselves as men and men CAN win. It takes a strategy, it takes discipline, and it takes unity...I want to see us take the fight here, and I want us to fight with the same courage, the same discipline, the same humanity, the same humor, and the same conviction our brothers in England have employed.

"Part of our problem is that we've waited for large numbers, and felt that if we don't have them we can't fight.  What Fathers 4 Justice has shown us is that you don't need large numbers of people--what you need is a cause which resonates with a lot of people--and God knows the mistreatment of fathers certainly does--and you need a small, disciplined group willing to take dramatic action to fight. I want to see David Chicks and Jolly Stansbys and Ron Davises and Spidermen and Powdermen in every American city and in every legislature and family court in the country. We can fight, we should fight, we must fight, and the men in this room right now should form the core leadership of that fight."

Leving's Divorce Magazine

The second edition of Leving's Divorce Magazine, the new magazine for the modern divorced men, is now available online with articles focusing on issues such as men's reproductive rights (or lack thereof), Parental Alienation Syndrome and child support. Visit now and get a free subscription. 

Help, Resources for Dads
The National Fathers' Resource Center is a division of Fathers For Equal Rights, Inc. (FER), located in Dallas, Texas, with offices in both Dallas and Houston. In existence for over three decades, it has services and resources for dads nationwide and is one of the largest and most active fathers' rights organizations in the U.S. www.fathers4kids.org

BBC Program Covers International Fatherhood Movement, Plays Segments from His Side with Glenn Sacks

The BBC recently did a program on the international fatherhood movement. The show featured segments from radio shows in South Africa, Australia, the Czech Republic, and His Side with Glenn Sacks here in the U.S. The program discussed the way England's Fathers 4 Justice helped bring the issue of fathers' rights into the public eye.

The segments from His Side were from the show Father Fights Adoption Agency for Right to Raise His Son (7/17/05), which discussed the Mark Huddleston case. Huddleston is the biological father of a 16-month-old child he says he wants to raise. But a judge has ruled the child should remain with its adoptive parents, who have had custody since the infant was three days old. Huddleston claims he didn't know the baby existed until two months after its birth, and the state said the private adoption agency hadn't properly notified Huddleston.

Despite doing everything possible to be a father to his son, Huddleston's baby boy was given away by a vindictive mother working hand in glove with a predatory adoption agency. Sixteen months and $70,000 in legal fees later, Huddleston has no rights to his own son. Huddleston, his attorney P.J. Hartman, and Mike McCormick, Executive Director of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children, were guests on the show.

To listen to the show, click here.

Parental Alienation Awareness Day

Parental Alienation Awareness Day on April 25 raises awareness about Parental Alienation Syndrome, the psychological abuse children suffer when a parent attempts to turn his or her children against the parent after divorce or separation.

Parental Alienation involves the systematic brainwashing and manipulation of children, both overtly and with subtle behaviors, that results in the destruction of a loving relationship they once shared with the parent. As a result, the child fears and/or hates the target parent without reason. According to psychologist Richard Warshak, author of Divorce Poison, in PAS cases "You will see a degree of contempt and cruelty reserved for one's worst enemies".

In my column PBS Declares War on Dads (World Net Daily, 10/20/05), I described numerous Parental Alienation scenarios, including the following:

"'A four year-old boy is jumping up and down with joy.

"'Daddy! Daddy!'

"Dad gets out of the car.

"'Daddy's here! Daddy's here!'

"The boy is behind a locked screen door. He tries to open it.

"'Daddy's here! Mommy, look, daddy's here!'

"Dad knows he shouldn't open the door. He waits for his ex-wife to open the door. She doesn't do it.

"'This is my visitation time,' Dad says, waving a court document.

"Mom still won't open the door.

"The boy jumps up and down, saying 'daddy, daddy.' He yanks on the screen door handle but still can't get it open.

"Dad looks at his little boy. He pauses, takes a deep breath, and walks back to his car.

"The little boy doesn't understand. Why won't daddy come? Why is daddy walking away from him?

"The little boy disappears inside the house.

"Dad calls the police. When the officers arrive he shows them his court documents. The officers go inside to investigate. They come out a few minutes later.

"'Your son says he doesn't want to see you,' the officer says. 'There's nothing I can do. You'll have to deal with it in the court. I can't make him go with you if he doesn't want to.'

"Dad finally gets to see his kids three months later. The children spit on both him and their grandmother. Almost in unison they repeat 'I don't want to be here. I want to go home with mommy, I don't want to be here. I want to go home with mommy, I don't want to be here. I want to go home with mommy.'"

Experts backing Parental Alienation Awareness Day include Dr. Richard Warshak, Dr. Michael Bone, Dr. Reena Sommer, and numerous others. Warshak played an important role in the LaMusga move-away case in the California Supreme Court (to learn more, click here and here). Bone helps divorced parents through Tree House Solutions, which he co-founded. Sommer has done fine work on PAS, including during our Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing Breaking the Silence and regarding the tragic Lohstroh Parental Alienation case. To hear Sommer discuss PAS and Lohstroh on His Side with Glenn Sacks, see The Lohstroh Case: Alienating Mother Pushes 10 Year-Old Boy to Kill Father (10/31/04).

To learn more about Parental Alienation Awareness Day, go to www.parental-alienation-awareness.com or write to them here.

Are You a Target of Parental Alienation Syndrome?

The sponsors of Parental Alienation Awareness Day are interested in hearing your PAS story. To tell your story, click here.

Help for Men Struggling with Relationships, Depression, Anger or Anxiety

The Men's Center Los Angeles offers individual, couple, family and group counseling with a focus on men's issues. Call them at (818) 348-9302 or go to MensCenterLosAngeles.com

Concerned about Financial Issues in Your Divorce?

If you're concerned about financial issues in your divorce, contact Jim DiGabriele of DiGabriele, McNulty & Co by email here or at 973-243-2600.

Father: A Child's Right
Visit www.fatherachildsright.org to find information about child custody issues related to fathers and their children's rights, as well as book reviews on parenting, custody and divorce. A fun and exciting father & son baseball component is added for enjoyment. Buy books, magazines and DVDs for your children. Learn about the Michigan Shared Parenting bill. www.fatherachildsright.org

Some Feminist Domestic Violence Leaders Do Have Some Brain Cells Firing

Some of you may recall my sparring with Esta Soler, founder and president of the Family Violence Prevention Fund, one of the world's leading domestic violence organizations, in the San Francisco Chronicle last year. Soler was unhappy over my column Domestic violence a two-way street (San Francisco Chronicle, 4/8/05) (aka Domestic Violence Series Substitutes Emotion for Facts) and fired back at me in the Chronicle, calling my column a "shameful example of cherry-picking and distorting data to confuse readers." Read her letter here.

My domestic violence column was written in response to a recent series of alarmist, manbashing articles in Chronicle. The article series to which this opinion column responds is (Traces of Danger Beneath the Calm and Deadly Warning, San Francisco Chronicle, 3/13/05).

At the time we invited Soler to discuss the issue with us on His Side with Glenn Sacks but she declined. However, I recently noticed some encouraging news about Soler in a Men's News Daily column by domestic violence expert Richard L. Davis called Mandatory Arrest and No-Drop Prosecution. Davis wrote:

"Soler believes that all acts of intimate partner violence are wrong. But, Soler acknowledges that domestic violence is not one person pushing another person once or twice because of an argument. Soler believes that domestic violence occurs when there is 'an ongoing pattern of fear, intimidation and violent assault.'"

Davis also has some positive news about Ellen Pence, who pioneered the highly-influential Duluth Intervention Project. In my column Domestic Violence Treatment Policies Put Abused Women in Harm's Way (Daily Breeze [Los Angeles], 11/7/05) I wrote:

"Current domestic violence treatment strategies are based on the Duluth model, which depicts domestic violence as a function of patriarchy and men's patriarchal privilege. This model assumes that the reason men physically abuse women is to maintain control over them. In ideologically-driven classes for offenders, men in need of serious psychological intervention are instead screamed at and called 'domestic terrorists' and 'fascists.'

"A recent report by the National Research Council's Committee on Law and Justice condemns these programs for failing to consider non-Duluth causes of domestic violence. The report criticizes the way batterers are 'treated as a homogeneous group,' and states that treatment programs are 'driven by ideology and stakeholder interests rather than by plausible theories and scientific evidence of cause.'

"While some domestic violence no doubt stems from a warped desire to control spouses or intimates, most experts believe that the roots of domestic violence generally lay elsewhere."

According to Davis, Pence "also believes that today's one-size-fits-all mandatory arrest and no-drop prosecution policies are not accomplishing what the Duluth Intervention Project intended. Pence acknowledges and understands that those who commit minor acts of 'family conflict' or one act of abuse are not 'batterers.'"

Davis' article criticizes the way the current domestic violence system hammers on anyone accused of abuse, regardless of whether the individual in question is truly a batterer or was instead involved in a minor and/or mutual physical confrontation, or was falsely accused altogether. I've discussed this problem in numerous columns, including Baseball Player's Domestic Violence Arrest Demonstrates How Men are Presumed Guilty in Domestic Disputes (Los Angeles Daily Journal, San Francisco Daily Journal, 8/8/02), VAWA Renewal Provides Opportunity to Stop Destruction of Innocent Cops' Careers (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, 7/19/05), and my co-authored Domestic Violence Lawsuit Will Help Secure Services for All Abuse Victims (Los Angeles Daily Journal, San Francisco Daily Journal, 12/28/05).

Domestic Violence Law Enforcement Policies Criticized by Ex-Cop

George Sperry, a retired police officer, echoes similar sentiments in a recent letter to the editor of a San Diego newspaper. Sperry wrote:

"I recall police training classes in the '70s and '80s--mandated after the earlier laws were passed--given by female instructors (never saw a male instructor), with their teachings so dripping with male hatred that everyone in the class felt uncomfortable, male and female officers alike. Truly abused women needed better laws to protect them, but not these. They also removed arrest decisions from the responding officer and we repeatedly had to arrest the man, some whose only crime was physically repelling a woman attacking him.

"In the hundreds of calls of domestic violence I responded to in my career, perhaps 90 percent to 95 percent were false, yet I saw children's and men's lives destroyed irrevocably due to vindictive, greedy, spoiled, mentally imbalanced, and/or drug-infested women perverting the judicial system. This is not to say the man was a pillar of virtue, just that the judicial sword was placed in the woman's hand by poor laws.

"The best I could do, in face of mandated laws, would be to also arrest the woman if there was sufficient evidence she also was violently involved (not self-defense reactions) or initiated the incident. On rare occasion, able to prove the woman's claim was false, I would arrest only her. Obviously, in those cases, I was not popular with whatever movement supported this 'Alice in Wonderland' approach, nor with supervisors or prosecuting attorneys so self-absorbed with political correctness that truth was irrelevant."

Convicted Murderess Gets Protective Order Against the Father Whose Girl She Drowned

The Judi L. Noe case is....amazing. According to the Associated Press article Woman convicted of killing daughter gets protective order:

"A woman convicted of drowning her 2-year-old daughter obtained a protective order against the girl's father after she was released from prison earlier this week.

"Judi L. Noe, 36, served one year and 13 days in prison on a charge of voluntary manslaughter for drowning her daughter, Brieana Jaide Noe, in June 2004.

"The girl's father, Brad May, said Tuesday he was not surprised by the order, granted by an Allen Superior Court magistrate. He has been critical of the decision to release Noe.

"'I wish somebody would have put half this much energy into protecting Brieana as they are into protecting Judi now,' May said.

"Noe pleaded guilty but mentally ill to the reduced charges and was sentenced to serve five years of an eight-year sentence in prison, followed by three years on probation.

"Allen Superior Court Judge John Surbeck Jr. on Feb. 23 approved Noe's early release from prison and moved her to the county's re-entry program, which requires weekly court appearances and provides counseling and job-search assistance.

"Noe was scheduled to begin mental health treatment this week as part of her early release.

"The protective order prohibits May, who lives in Michigan, from contacting Noe in any manner, including by telephone, in person or by letter and from harassing, annoying, or threatening her for two years."

Amazing--she murders (OK, "manslaughters") their baby, and she's a victim in need of protection.

According to another article, after what could be euphemistically called Noe's "sentencing" on March 29 of last year, the little girl's father "described the sentence as absurd and said five years in prison isn't enough time for 'a baby killer.'"

The father asserted that it was not a coincidence that Noe drowned Brieana on Father's Day, and told the judge during the hearing that "he believed Noe planned to kill their daughter after he began pursuing custody. He also told the judge he believes his daughter struggled and suffered for at least 30 minutes before she died, based on his conversations with doctors."

If May had been given custody of the little girl instead of her mother, she would be alive today.

This case is another fine example of the female sentencing discount. Carol Kuhn, the child's paternal grandmother, believes "the judicial system made a joke of the situation by giving Noe such a short prison term."

"Judi essentially just got away with it," Kuhn said.

I discussed the female sentencing discount in my column Female Murderers Seen in a Different Light: Society Prefers to View Violent Women as Victims (Pasadena Star-News & Affiliated Papers, 7/5/01). My friend Marc Angelucci later wrote a better and more thorough analysis of this problem--see Males Get Longer Sentences Than Females For Same Crime (Ifeminists.com, 4/23/02).

To learn more about the problem of restraining order abuse, see my co-authored column Letterman Case Shows Problems with Restraining Orders (Albuquerque Tribune, 1/17/06) and my column VAWA Renewal Provides Opportunity to Stop Destruction of Innocent Cops' Careers (Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, 7/19/05).

Lisa Scott Launches RealFamilyLaw.com

Shared Parenting Advocate/Family Law Attorney Lisa Scott has just launched www.RealFamilyLaw.com to expose the truth about what is happening in our family law system. Lisa, the all-time leader in appearances on His Side with Glenn Sacks, says that she was "tired of having her stuff rejected by elitist bar publications and politically-correct newspapers" and decided to start her own website. www.RealFamilyLaw.com

Time for Family Fun Without the Burning Sun
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New Column: 'Roe v. Wade for Men' Case Illustrates Family Law System's Inequities

My recent co-authored column, 'Roe v. Wade for Men' Case Illustrates
Family Law System's Inequities
(Daytona News-Journal, 3/31/06), discusses the problems with our family law system in light of the new lawsuit over men and reproductive rights. Mike McCormick, Executive Director of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children, and I wrote:

"Whether one sympathizes with Dubay or not, his lawsuit illustrates the way the family law system addresses the needs and desires of women, while turning a cold shoulder to those of men. This system represents the most egregious violation of gender equity in our society today.

"The plight of unwed fathers exemplifies the point. Dubay is vilified by both the pro-choice feminist left and the pro-life right as an irresponsible cad, deadbeat and whiner. Yet the millions of unmarried men who do try to be fathers to their children find that while they are frequently lectured to 'take responsibility,' they're often not permitted any meaningful role in their children's lives. These stand-up guys usually get to spend only a few days a month with their kids, if they're lucky. Once mom finds a new man, they're often pushed out entirely in favor of the child's 'new dad.' And fathers who look to the family law system for help quickly find that said system has no interest in their case beyond keeping the child support checks coming."

I've written about anti-father bias of the family law system on numerous occasions. Some examples include: California NOW's Family Court Report 2002: Faulty Research, False Conclusions (Los Angeles Daily Journal, San Francisco Daily Journal, 7/11/02); my co-authored Have Anti-Father Family Court Policies Led to a Men's Marriage Strike? (Philadelphia Inquirer, 7/5/02); my co-authored California Supreme Court Takes Step Backward on Children's Rights (Daily Breeze [Los Angeles], 2/9/06); my co-authored PBS's Breaking the Silence: Family Law in the Funhouse Mirror (Albany Times Union, 10/20/05, Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, 10/24/05; and my co-authored Laws Must Protect the Rights of Military Dads (Army Times, Marine Corps Times, 3/28/05).

We've also discussed this bias on His Side with Glenn Sacks on numerous occasions. Some examples include: Families and Fathers Conference 2005:
Civil Rights Leaders or Reactionary Patriarchs?
First Wives vs. Second Wives (11/21/04); Not the Era of the Deadbeat Dad but the Era of the Hero Father (6/19/05); Support California Shared Parenting Bill AB 1307 (4/24/05); Michigan's Top Cop Tells Kids: Denounce Your Daddy (10/3/04); and Fathers Targeted by Cox Speak Out (10/17/04).

Tree House Solutions

As with the tree house of childhood, parents as well as children need a place of refuge and support to "see above" and to navigate what has been termed "high conflict" divorce. Tree House Solutions, LLC is a growing and evolving resource that is designed to meet both the emotional and the informational needs of parents who are going through divorce, as well as those who are divorced but still experience challenges in shared parenting with their former spouses. www.treehousesolutions.org.

Are You Really the Father?
Find out the underlying flaws in the DNA paternity testing system and learn how a man with results in the 90%, 95% or even 99% positive range may not be the father. Learn what most lawyers and judges don't know about paternity testing. www.paternitytestflaw.com.

NOW Launches Counterattack Against FaFNY, Sackson Horde

In response to over 7,000 calls and letters to the New York Assembly Committee on Children & Families in support of A330, the New York Shared Parenting Bill, the New York State Chapter of the National Organization for Women and Stop Family Violence have launched a counterattack. To see NOW's Call to Action, click here. To read the Stop Family Violence Call to Action, click here. In both cases, it's the usual feminist hysterics about savage males and innocent, saintly, victimized females.

As during our Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing Breaking the Silence, NOW is not able to match our numbers. However, their counterattack is still problematic. This is because the Assembly committee members began blocking emails from our supporters after last week's wave, and we stopped faxing the committee members two weeks ago at their request. I don't blame them--staffers told our activists that the deluge prevented them from being able to get any work done.

However, the result is that at this point the committee members are pretty much just hearing from feminist opponents of A330, even though we have far more supporters. As a remedy, I suggest you call the committee members yourselves and send them faxes and emails independently. These aren't blocked and will get through. To call, fax, and email the committee members, click here.

A330, the New York Shared Parenting Bill, is sponsored by the Coalition of Fathers and Families New York, the New York affiliate of the American Coalition for Fathers & Children. To learn more about the bill, see my co-authored column Shared Parenting Bill Would Help New York's Children of Divorce (Albany Times Union, 3/28/06) and NOW president Marcia Pappas' Joint custody bill not in child's interest.  Again, to contact the committee members, click here.

Albany Times Union Endorses Shared Parenting

The Albany Times Union has long been seen by shared parenting advocates as a pro-feminist/anti-male obstacle. However, as I've pointed out, both during the PBS campaign and the A330 campaign the Times Union has made a legitimate and admirable effort to be fair and to give both sides a hearing.

Nonetheless I was more than a little surprised to find this morning that the Albany Times Union is now endorsing Shared Parenting and A330. In the editorial Custody challenges: It's time New York embraced the concept of shared parenting the paper's editorial board writes that A330's presumption for shared parenting is "the right presumption--and an overdue one." The editorial has its weaknesses, but it represents a significant step forward for our movement in New York, a key battleground state.

Stop Family Violence Says a Child's Love for His Parents Only Matters if the Parents Get Along

I've written many times about feminists' desire to give divorcing mothers a veto over fathers' fatherhood and over children's right to a relationship with their fathers. In Stop Family Violence's Call to Action here they write "fathers' rights proponents will also tell you that what's best for children of divorce is that courts protect the loving bonds with the two most important people in children's lives--the child's mother and father. That's true, but only if the parents get along and choose joint custody." In other words, the bonds matter, unless mom's mad at dad, in which case they can be quickly tossed aside.

informs fathers about their rights during divorce litigation while providing them with concrete, practical resources to get results in the courtroom. DadsDivorce.com is a popular meeting place for fathers facing divorce.

Learn About the 3 Forces That Make Men Weak, 'Nice,' and Passive
Paul Coughlin, author of No More Christian Nice Guy: When Being Nice--Instead of Good--Hurts Men, Women, and Children, takes aim at a cultural prejudice against men, a dangerous caricature of gentle Jesus meek and mild, and explains how passive people think and how they are made, not born. Says Dr. Laura, who wrote the forward, "This is a fabulous book. It's so clever, I think it will jump-start you guys--Christian or otherwise." Join the Good Guy Rebellion and start a better life today. Visit www.christianniceguy.com

Criticism of Glenn Over Including Link to NOW Column in Email Form Letter

A few of you have criticized me over last week's form letter in support of A330, the New York Shared Parenting bill. As you know, on 3/28 the ACFC's Mike McCormick and I squared off against Marcia Pappas, president of the New York State Chapter of the National Organization for Women, in a point/counterpoint on A330 in the Albany Times-Union. In our form letter which went out to members of the New York Assembly's Committee on Children & Families last week, I included the following at the end:

"To learn more about the bill, see the Albany Times Union's debate on it--Supporting the child by order of the court (in favor) and Joint custody bill not in child's interest (opposed)." 

In fact, some members of the Coalition of Fathers and Families New York have copied and distributed both our column and Pappas' column to members of the New York Assembly.

I have a couple of responses to the criticism over this. One is to echo something very wise which Ned Holstein of Fathers and Families emphasized during our Campaign Against PBS's Father-Bashing Breaking the Silence --"have faith in the truth." In other words, don't be afraid to let the other side be heard--have faith that the truth in what you're saying will be understood. I frankly have a hard time believing that many people, reading our column and Pappas' column together, would side with Pappas.

Moreover, my critics misunderstand what constitutes political power. I discussed this issue on His Side with Glenn Sacks in response to criticisms of my cordial demeanor with Martha Burk, Gloria Allred, Michael Kimmel, Amanda Marcotte and other opposition guests on the show. To listen to my response, click here.

4TRUTH IDENTITY: The Leader in Fast, Accurate DNA Tests

If you're looking for a paternity test, Paternity Fraud crusader Carnell Smith's 4TRUTH IDENTITY offers guaranteed, 100% accurate identification services in virtually every US state and in several countries. Call (404) 289-3321or click here.

Online Support for Men Going Through Divorce
Don't feel isolated, frightened, confused or alone when going through your divorce.  Get the help and support you need without leaving your home at the Ottawa Divorce Forums www.OttawaDivorce.com/forum/

Stephen Baskerville Skewers Family Court 'Privacy'

Stephen Baskerville, president of the American Coalition for Fathers and Children, skewers family court "privacy" in his new piece Banned Near Boston: More chicanery from the underworld of family law. The article deals with the case of  Kevin Thompson, a Massachusetts father who "received an order prohibiting distribution of his book, Exposing the Corruption in the Massachusetts Family Courts. The court also impounded the records of Thompson's custody case, reinforcing the secrecy in which family courts like to operate."

Baskerville's description of the role of "privacy" in this case is perfect:

"The standard justification for secret courts is the one Judge Manzi now extends to censorship: 'privacy interests of the parties' minor child.' Thompson's son has already been forcibly separated from his father, and his life is now under the total control of state officials. What 'privacy' does this child have left?

Baskerville also notes that the "true reason for the secrecy and censorship is not to protect privacy but to invade it with impunity."

Dads, Learn to
Take Charge of Your Case in Family Court
Go to www.Liberty-Bell-Union.org to take a comprehensive ONLINE course that teaches you how to handle your case - with or without a lawyer. Learn to Fight for your rights and your children -all for one-hour of a lawyer's fees. Learn to tell public about the tyranny that fathers face in these courts: Reason for Revolution: The Tyranny Against Fathers, Family, and Freedom.

Has Your Career Been Impacted by Custody Issues?
After empowering people's careers for over 20 year, I was duly initiated into family law just like you--through a 30 month, $520,000 custody suit.  From corporate transitions to home-based business options, know that there is a way for you to shake the financial shackles and experience a "no limits" career.  More than ever, your kids now need a free and available parent.  Be there for them... and for yourself.  Darrell W. Gurney, www.CareerGuy.com.

Grieving Parents, Families Deserve Peace When Burying Their Loved Ones

This doesn't have much to do with the usual issues I discuss but it struck me as being worthy of mention. As many of you know, the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kansas, headed by Reverend Fred Phelps, protests at the funerals of dead American soldiers, saying the deaths of U.S. soldiers in Iraq are God's vengeance for protecting a country (the U.S.) that tolerates homosexuality. They carry signs that read, for example, "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" and "Thank God for IED's" in reference to the improvised explosive devices used by terrorists in Iraq. 

When I first heard of it, I thought that Phelps and crew were only protesting at the funerals of gay soldiers who had been mortally wounded. This would have been appalling enough, but what I hadn't realized was that they were protesting at the funerals of all soldiers.

I was contacted by a woman named Nancy Totman, a military and legislative advocate for the Blue Star Moms of California. Her group and others are working in favor of a bill which would ban demonstrations or protests within 300 feet of funerals.

California Assemblyman Rick Keene (3rd district) has introduced AB 2707 in California (sponsored by the Blue Star Moms) which addresses the disruption of the funerals of soldiers who have died while serving. If you're interested in supporting this legislation, write a letter of support to Assemblymember Rick Keene at assemblymember.Keene@assembly.ca.gov

Phelps & Co. had also protested at the funerals of the miners killed in the Sago Mining disaster. One woman even held up a poster which said "Thank God for Dead Miners." In my co-authored column Are American Husbands Slackers? (Tallahassee Democrat, 3/22/06) we discussed Terry Helms, one of the 12 miners killed in the disaster. We wrote:

"Terry's son Nick told the Associated Press that his father 'had endured numerous injuries in a 30-year career and hated mining because of the dangers.'

""[My father] is very selfless," Nick said. '[He] refused to quit because the job put food on the table... He gave his life in there so I could go to the movies.'"

The idea that these lunatics had free reign to disrupt the funerals of men like Helms is an outrage.

The Secrets of Happily Married Men

How can a man achieve a long and happy marriage? If you've been checking out  advice columns or seeing a therapist, you may have been looking in the wrong place. Despite all the advances in brain technology, and all of that we have learned about developmental psychology--men and women are given the same advice about solving problems. But when we ask men what works for them, we hear a different story. www.SecretsofMarriedMen.com

How Does Sex Discrimination Affect Men and Boys?
The National Coalition of Free Men is a non-profit educational & civil rights organization that looks at the ways sex discrimination affects men and boys. NCFM helps provide men a unified voice on important political and social issues. www.NCFM.org

Women's E-News Portrays Men as Lazy, Overprivileged

Kimberly Gadette's new Women's E-News column Male Backlash Muddles and Misses Facts provides an excellent example of the bigotry and derision which feminists pour upon men. Gadette writes:

"Every now and then, Western history belches out some group of men who protest their miserably high status in life, claiming that society is treating them unfairly.

"I'm almost embarrassed for them. It's as if Halliburton, having been granted contracts in the billions of dollars to do work in Iraq and New Orleans, would feel slighted if it lost the job to work on the asbestos problem in my neighbor's guesthouse.

"...whine with cheese [comes from] from the National Center for Men, an advocacy group founded in 1987 to help right the wrongs of individuals and families who have been damaged by discrimination against men. They have issues--oh boy, do they have issues! Here are some quotes from their Web site:

"'Men die about eight years earlier than women.'"

"Though no supporting facts are given, it sounds about right to me. To maintain good health, doctors recommend a low-fat diet and exercise. Consuming cheese doodles and beer and lolling on the couch does not make for longevity. Darn the luck, if only men liked housework. By getting off that sofa and washing a floor, scrubbing a toilet, raising a kid, they, too, might live longer.

"'In almost every category of disease, men suffer more often than women.'"

"Again, no scientific data is offered. If males do indeed have special powers in math and science--as Mansfield's pal and ex-boss, deposed Harvard President Lawrence Summers, has been known to claim--might we have some evidence to support such an assertion? Facts, fellas, facts.

"The NCM--or, as I call it, the "National Center for Milquetoasts"--has recently filed a lawsuit in a U.S. district court in Michigan on behalf of Matt Dubay, a 25-year-old computer programmer who disputes having to pay child support for his 7-month-old daughter. Officially trademarked as 'Roe v. Wade for Men,' the group argues that since the mother claimed to be both infertile and on birth control, the resulting pregnancy was not Dubay's fault and he should not be held monetarily accountable.

"Note to men: If the woman you're dating says she's both infertile and taking birth control, perhaps wearing a condom is a good idea until you can determine whether she's Ms. Right or Ms. Taken.

"As to family issues, yes, sometimes a woman may unjustly take a man for a ride. However, there are legitimate avenues for men to pursue--state registries, nonprofit educational groups, state representatives, family law attorneys--if they feel they are being deprived of their parental rights. But just how 'manly' is it to want to be free and clear of all paternal obligations?"

A few comments:

Men do die substantially earlier than women (though I don't know if "8 years" is accurate) and they are more likely to die of all major diseases. In my co-authored column When Men's Health Doesn't Count (Norfolk Virginian-Pilot, 10/9/02) I noted:

"The disturbing health and mortality disparities between American whites and blacks are well known, but most people do not realize that the health and mortality disparities between women and men are just as great. For example, the gap in life expectancy between whites and blacks is six years, while the gender gap is 5.7 years. Adjusted for age, men are 1.6 times as likely as women to die from one of the top 10 causes of death, and blacks are 1.5 times as likely to die from them as whites.

"Despite this, it is women's health, not men's, which continues to receive government attention and funding. For example, the National Institutes of Health--the federal focal point for medical research in the U.S.--spends nearly four times as much on female-specific health research as on male-specific research. And though the average man is as likely to die from prostate cancer as the average woman is from breast cancer, the Department of Health and Human Services' National Cancer Institute spends three and a half times as much money on breast cancer research as on prostate cancer research.

"In fact, prostate cancer makes up 37% of all cancer cases but receives only 5% of federal research funding."

Gadette also trots out the lazy husband myth, noting "Consuming cheese doodles and beer and lolling on the couch does not make for longevity. Darn the luck, if only men liked housework. By getting off that sofa and washing a floor, scrubbing a toilet, raising a kid, they, too, might live longer."  I debunked this myth in my co-authored column Are American Husbands Slackers? (Tallahassee Democrat, 3/22/06). Family law attorney Jeff Leving and I wrote:

"When both work outside the home and inside the home are properly considered, it is clear that men do at least as much as women. A 2002 University of Michigan Institute for Social Research survey found that women do 11 more hours of housework a week than men but men work 14 hours a week more than women. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, men's total time at leisure, sleeping, doing personal care activities, or socializing is a statistically meaningless 1% higher than women's. The Families and Work Institute in New York City found that fathers now provide three-fourths as much child care as mothers do--50% more than 30 years ago.

"Yet even these studies understate men's contributions because they only count the hours devoted to a task without measuring the physical strain and/or danger associated with the task. A man doing eight hours of dangerous construction work in the 100-degree heat is credited with no more 'work' than a woman who works in an air-conditioned office or who does childcare or housework in the comfort and safety of her own home [and without a supervisor breathing down her neck]."

While indignantly asserting women's iron clad right to choice, Gadette demeans as unmanly men who seek reproductive choices. She writes "But just how 'manly' is it to want to be free and clear of all paternal obligations?" In my recent co-authored column Women Have a Choice--Men Should Too (Saginaw News, 4/2/06) family law attorney Jeff Leving and I wrote:

"One and a half million American women legally walk away from motherhood every year by adoption, abortion or abandonment, yet somehow nobody labels them 'deadbeats' or 'deserters.' In over 40 states a mother can return the baby to the hospital within a few weeks of birth--completely opting out of motherhood with less hassle than it takes to return a DVD to Best Buy. Yet if the mother decides she wants to keep the child, she can demand 18 [or in some states 21 or 23] years of child support from the father, and he has no choice in the matter."

Perhaps the most ludicrous part of the article is Gadette's analogy between men's privilege over women and Halliburton's advantage over a small time asbestos remover. When I first began writing columns on men's and fathers issues, I wrote the below. It still seems accurate today.

"Some men are privileged and some women are privileged. Most are not. When we say 'privileged' we are only looking up, at the leaders of our society, who are mostly male.

"If we look down, at the bottom of our society, we'll see that most of the people down there are male, too: the homeless, the imprisoned, the suicide victims, those who die young, the school dropouts, etc. While many of American women's issues and concerns are certainly still unresolved, women's issues have received enormous publicity and attention. It's men's issues that have received little publicity, and that's why I write about them."

This doesn't even account for the most hideous disparity between men and women--their treatment in family court.

The tagline on Gadette's article says "Women's eNews welcomes your comments. E-mail us at editors@womensenews.org." I doubt they'll welcome yours, but since they offered...

Legal Help for Fathers

If you live in Los Angeles, Riverside or Orange counties and you're facing a divorce, separation, or a child custody issue, the law firm of Oddenino & Gaule can help.

Congressional Candidate Takes Strong Stand for Noncustodial Parents' Rights
In 2004 Libertarian presidential candidate Michael Badnarik had a strong noncustodial parents' rights platform.  Badnarik is clearly aware of and sensitive to the basic problems fathers today face, particularly the sole custody norm and the denigration of noncustodial parents to "second class parent" status. Badnarik is running for Congress in 2006--to learn more, go to www.badnarik.org.

Editorial Cartoon Acknowledges Special Sacrifices Made by Male Immigrants

However one feels about the immigration issue, I think we can all acknowledge that most immigrants come here for understandable reasons and make many sacrifices. My friend Al Rantel is a staunch supporter of restrictions on illegal immigration, but often tells his KABC listeners that if he lived in Mexico or Central America and had the chance to come to the United States, he would do so in a heartbeat.

It was nice to see this cartoon reflect the special sacrifices that many immigrant men make to provide for their families. It reminded me of the sacrifices made by so many of the Latino immigrant men I've known either through teaching English and Citizenship classes in South-Central Los Angeles or doing construction work.

The cartoon also reminded me of some of the touching songs about immigrants' struggles on Bruce Springsteen's album The Ghost of Tom Joad, including Sinaloa Cowboys, Across the Border and Balboa Park. One example, from Sinaloa Cowboys:

"Miguel came from a small town in northern Mexico
He came north with his brother Louis to California three years ago
They crossed at the river levee, when Louis was just sixteen
And found work together in the fields of the San Joaquin

"They left their homes and family
Their father said, "My sons one thing you will learn,
for everything the north gives, it exacts a price in return."
They worked side by side in the orchards
From morning till the day was through
Doing the work the hueros wouldn't do."

[Note: a "huero" is a white American].

File Taxes Online with  Professional Help

MENstax.com allows you to file your taxes, check your refund status, and have your return reviewed by an experienced tax professional--all online.

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I'm Now Officially an Old Fogy

My seven year-old daughter came home the other day beaming that she's going to be one of the key performers in an upcoming school dance performance. My daughter has always enjoyed dancing. She started as a toddler dancing in the kitchen while I cooked dinner. Her dancing then consisted mostly of just jumping up and down, but she was happy and never seemed to notice. The song she will be dancing to is called "Yeah!" by the hip hop artist Usher. The song features the following elevated prose:

"These women all on the prowl, if you hold the head steady I'm a milk the cow/Forget about the game, I'm a spit the truth, I won't stop till I get 'em in they birthday suits/So gimmie the rhythm and it'll be off with their clothes, then bend over to the front and touch your toes/I left the Jag and I took the Rolls, if they ain't cutting then I put em on foot patrol."

Somehow it seems rather indecent that my little girl is performing in public (or anywhere) to such lyrics. In other words, I'm now officially an old fogy...

Best Wishes,
Glenn Sacks