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News From Around the World
Sunday, October 09, 2005



1.     Why Homelessness is a Man Thing—Printed in its entirety (A Rinaldo MUST READ)

2.     Down and Out Dads (No room at the Shelter) In Hyperlink Only

3.     Shared Parenting Council of Connecticut Honors Representative—Printed in Entirety

4.     Dr. Klein, Potential Presidential Candidate: Speaks at Ohio State University October 12th, In Cincinnati on October 11th.

5.     Fatherhood Coalition (Unrelated to Berkshire Fatherhood Coalition) Announces Statewide Meeting October 23 in Leominster, MA

6.     Michigan Event shows need for strong fathers (printed in entirety)

7.     Roger Knight Responds to Case where appeals court dismissed a judgment despite the lack of fraud by father.



ITEM 1: Why Homelessness is a Man Thing

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Why Homelessness is a Man Thing

By Denise Noe

When the Atlanta Journal Constitution published an editorial, “To save Georgia’s children, we must save their mothers,” they inadvertently pointed to the reason why the majority of people at the economic bottom – the homeless – are men.

Since human fathers do not carry babies before their birth, are not physically equipped to breastfeed, and rarely are primary caregivers, our society has made little provision for the least economically successful males. While the life of poor, single mothers is undoubtedly very rough, they rarely end up, as men so often do, on the streets.

Of course, being children’s primary caregivers is a two-edged sword. As Sylvia Ann Hewlett pointed out in Creating a Life, mothers, saddled with childcare, rarely reach the economic top. Fathers have no problem since they leave most “hands-on” parenting to mothers.

But in discussions of the poorest of the poor, we must take gender into account and recognize that, in this area, men may be considered the disadvantaged sex. After all, one program aimed at helping the poor, WIC, is actually titled “Women Infants Children.” Men can and do receive WIC if they have custody of a child under the age of 5. However, would modern America tolerate an anti-poverty agency that had “Men” in its name?

The truth that the majority of the homeless are men also sheds light on the emptiness of some proposed solutions to the impoverishment of women and children. It is often suggested that the mothers and children would not be poor if the parents were married but men whose incomes are nothigh enough to pull themselves up out of homelessness cannot possibly pull wives and children out of poverty.

Moreover, while being a mother is a ticket to extraordinary stress and deprivation for poor women, being a father can be a ticket to jail for poor men. Under current Georgia law, a non-custodial parent can be criminally prosecuted and incarcerated for non-support, called “child abandonment” even if he or she has no funds and/or is unemployed.

We often look with horror on Charles Dickens’ depictions of Debtor’s Prisons in Victorian England. From our present, supposedly enlightened standpoint, the very idea of putting people behind bars who are unable to pay their bills seems barbaric. Isn’t it obvious that, if a person lacks the funds to meet their debts while they are free, putting them in jail is not going to help them get that money? We also look down at the Victorians for making criminals out of people for being failures.

Yet we do the same thing today. Debtor’s Prison is alive and sick in the United States and very popular. It’s called a crackdown on “Deadbeat Dads.” Certainly parents need to be responsible, financially, physically, and emotionally, for their children. When the parents are not together, the one who does not shoulder the day-to-day physical and emotional burdens ought to pick up the financial tab – if she or (much more commonly) he -- can. But we should not be demanding the impossible. We don’t expect to squeeze blood out of a turnip and we should not be demanding child support from parents, usually fathers, who simply don’t have the money. By doing so, we have criminalized financial failure.

Ours is a culture in which we are reluctant to see people suffer for things they cannot help. One of the major factors leading to the worst sort of destitution is something that, except for (arguably) the transgendered, individuals do not choose and that is their sex. We need to put in a more secure financial safety net for those of the poor who happen to be men. Society reaps no benefit fromleaving its least competent adult males to sleep on street grates and forage out of garbage cans.

Denise Noe

Item 2: Down-and-out dads:
No room at the shelters?
ITEM 3: Council Honors Representative  VoiceNews.com

SOUTHBURY - Representative Arthur O'Neill (R-69) has been honored by the Shared Parenting Council.  Rep. O'Neill was given an award naming him an effective legislator for his work this past session on PA 05-258, which is a new law redefining "the best interests of the child" to include active involvement by both parents.

The Act also requires detailed Parental Responsibility Plans and encourages conciliation of disputes without involvement of the children.

The award was voted unanimously at a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Shared Parenting Council of Connecticut: John Clapp, Ph.D; Dr. Paul Appleton, M.D.; Dr. Eric Gladstein, DDS; and Robert Stewart, M.S. and J.D.

The mission of the Council is to obtain presumption of equal parenting opportunities before the law, regardless of gender, and to change the judicial system to better serve children.

The Council works with state legislatures, nonprofit and lobbying groups, to promote change in Connecticut's legal and regulatory framework, and seeks a framework that promotes active involvement of both parents in the lives of their children.

The Council believes the state cannot guarantee that parents will make the right decisions for their children, but it can provide incentives to encourage this.

The Council also believes that custody laws in Connecticut should be oriented around the need to promote frequent and continued contact between children and their mothers and fathers.


 ITEM 4: Dr. Klein, presedential candidate. ·       

* Please forward this email to equal custody/equal rights advocates. * * *

Dr. Klein is in the "testing the waters" phase concerning the 2008 presidential election. He is conducting meetings at colleges across America. If you are one of the 25 million divorced dads, "second wives" and disenfranchised grandparents you should come to the  meetings to support reform of family custody law at the national
level. Case by case or state-by-state reform could take a lifetime. We need top down national reform. If you are an advocate for equal custody/equal rights please show your support for Dr. Klein because he promises a national Equal Custody Act on the level of the national Civil Rights Act of the 1964.

Dr. Klein will speak briefly and take questions and comments about numerous national issues including family law reform.

WHEN: Wednesday, October 12, 7:30 PM

WHERE: Ohio State University at University Hall Room 347, 230 North Oval Mall, Columbus, OH 43210

Admission is FREE !


(Dr. Klein will be speaking in Cincinnati on Tuesday 10/11/05 please
contact us for time & locations
ITEM 5: Fatherhood Coalition has statewide meeting
  Mark your calendars -- we'll have out next statewide, open board meeting Sunday Oct 23.  It will be in Leominster from 1:30-4:30.  The Leominster library has temporarily relocated because the permament location is undergoping extensive rebuilding.  The directions are more direct, ie easier to get to, and I will post them in time.

Mark C.
 ITEM 6: Event Shows Strong Need for Fathers (Has quote of Ned Holstein of Fathers and Families) The Jackson Citizen Patriot, Michigan  
Event shows need for strong fathers

Saturday, October 08, 2005

By Scott Hagen

shagen@citpat.com -- 768-4929

Children who grow up in homes without fathers are more likely to be violent, abuse drugs and alcohol, get pregnant at an early age and suffer from depression.

All research points to those facts. And it's a large reason a movement has risen in the past 15 years directed at educating men about the important roles they play in the lives of their children, and the ripple effect it leaves when fathers aren't in the home.

The scene Friday at the fourth annual Father Fair at the Jackson County Fairgrounds invoked hope. Toddlers walked hand-in-hand with their fathers while dads cradled infants in their arms. The event is designed to raise awareness on the importance of fatherhood and to offer resources to help fathers.

Experts -- and local dads -- say that sons learn and watch how fathers behave and inherit those traits when they grow older and start families.

"My role as a father is to show my son how to live life the proper way, how to be a good citizen to society, the right things to do and how to treat women," said 26-year-old Lynard Oliver II, as he cradled his son, Lynard Oliver III, in the crook of his left arm at Father Fair. "I learned it from my father."

Studies show that kids who grow up with involved fathers are more confident, handle frustration better, gain a better sense of independence, have a higher self-esteem and do better in school.

But with each year Oliver is becoming the exception, rather than the rule. About 40 to 50 percent of children live in a home without their father or a male role model, according to the National Council on Fathering. The statistics are an alarming trend for advocates of two-parent families and experts who point out the problems that accompany children who grow up fatherless.

Paying a price

"We're seeing the price we pay as a society," said Ned Holstein, director of the Massachusetts-based Fathers and Families, a group that trumpets the importance of active fathers. "It's no longer a questionable matter as to whether this is having adverse effects on kids and therefore on society. The jury is back on this question, and it's not working."

Some experts point to a shift in culture that no longer recognizes the benefits fathers bring to the family. Single mothering is heralded in television sitcoms and in Hollywood movies while fathers are depicted as goofballs.

"In a time when we have more children growing up in fatherless homes than ever before, we're also suddenly being bombarded with the message from all sides that dad is unnecessary, that it's a nice option if you can get it," said Bob Pletcher, the father involvement specialist at Community Action Agency and the director of Father Fair.

The ambitious goal of local and national agencies is to reverse that cultural mindset, to get men in the home and get them actively involved with raising children.

"All men want to be good dads, they just don't necessarily know how," said Ken Howard, the seminar director at the National Center on Fathering. "In most cases, there's just nothing in their paradigm that says: good fathering. Something in their life has to point them to learning."

The future trend

Some predict the trend of fatherless homes will get worse before it gets better. But for every child that is growing up, exploring life and discovering values without a father, the brighter the spotlight male-advocacy organizations plan to shine on the problem.

"Mothers do an awesome job," said 27-year-old Jacob Kuhn while he held his son, Andrew, at Father Fair. "But kids are looking for that one strong person, and I firmly believe we've got to be it."


ITEM 7: Roger Knight responds to Massachusetts Case which over ruled trial court and allowed wife to set aside a judgment on division of assets without a finding of fraud on the part of the husband (it was an “intentional ignorance” theory):


“Here is the problem that I would have in even taking a course in family law: I strongly disagree with the basic premises behind family law.  Here, we have a case where the husband in a divorce, who probably is the respondent and not the petitioner, has a duty to fully disclose his financial assets and sources of income, but the wife who wishes to share in income she does not directly earn, NEVER HAS TO PROVE WRONGDOING OR FAULT on the part of the husband off whom she wishes to continue to live.
That is clear deprivation of property without due process of law.

The reason we used to have FAULT in divorce is to protect breadwinners from this deprivation of property without due process of law and therefore keep the divorce process constitutional.
That is what stops me in my tracks on the subject of family law.  Without the requirement for finding of WRONGDOING, I consider the EVERYTHING THAT FOLLOWS to be UNCONSTITUTIONAL and therefore NULL AND VOID.

In which case, I tend to get bored with the nitty gritty details of such fundamentally illegal process.”