Saturday, December 19, 2009

Denial, Justification, and twisting things to work for yourself..

Denial, Justification, and twisting things to work for yourself..

Yeah that about covers it..

I read this article below and I'm sitting here scratching my head.. thinkin.. awesome (Information wise) article BUT... umm ok isn't that exactly what the definition is of either sex parent yelling and screaming that their partner is alienating the children from them do?

Yeah it is!

One parent alienating the children is and can very well be called domestic violence by proxy.. but it wasn't originally called that.

Instead it was called "Parent Alienation" and I'm thinkin just because Richard Gardner studied abusive women doing it and called it like it was.. that those women's groups got their panties in a bunch and had to insist it wasn't happening.

So, lets take a second look -

(1) abusers feel entitled

(2) abuse is a multi generational problem!

(3) people that are in or find themselves constantly in abusive relationships.. are there because they learned from their original caregivers that they weren't "good enough" "smart enough" "strong enough" "good looking enough" "fast enough" "slow enough" tall enough" "short enough" "thin enough" "fat enough" They grew up feeling for the most part JUST NOT ENOUGH of something! aka LOW SELF ESTEEM!

(4) Abusers came from homes where they were taught there were more than... "smarter than" "stronger than" "beter looking than" skinner than" .... do we get the picture here?

So is it only women that learn they aren't enough growing up, or only men that learn they're better than? Umm no!

How can I say no?

Women are the only ones abused!!!!

And because it's been proven that those who end up abused.. ended up there because of their low self esteem!

And men are all batters- then they all grew up feeling more than.. while the women all grew up feeling less than...

Yeah ok- you go right ahead and believe that -- and I'll educate myself and know the real truth.

Dominance and abuse comes in all color- sizes- shapes and forms..

Domestic violence by proxy when being done by an abusive woman is what? Oh yeah they labeled that PARENT ALIENATION!

But.. because this author felt that ONLY men are abusive and only women are victims-- they had to rename something that's already been studied and named long ago..

What's the name? Parent Alienation- stop needing to protect the groups that cried wolf when their own kind got caught alienating.. and call a spade a fukin spade will ya!

The faster Parent Alienation gets into the DSM as what can happened from an abusers entitlement attitude.. then PAS gets in there as well.. as what happens to the children that have been emotionally abused by the original abuser ... the faster our kids get help!

Ummm hello to all those women's groups...

The pain of acceptance is temporary..

The pain of Denial is forever...

How many women do you know that are now either dead or to old to enjoy their children that the abuser took from them eons ago?


Stop denying twisting or re-framing the obvious and lets get on with the healing of all the abused souls out there.. yeah even the ones that pee standing up!

Here's a link to the article that got my panties ina bunch this morning...

Domestic Violence by Proxy vs. Parental Alienation Syndrome - Associated Content -

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Outrage over convicted divorce judge’s early release

By Thomas Tracy
Tuesday, December 8, 2009 9:09 PM EST

The fact that disgraced judge Gerald Garson will be home for the holidays is “reprehensible” and a “mockery of justice,” a group of divorced mothers and domestic violence survivors claimed Monday as they protested the convicted septuagenarian’s early release from prison.

“Money talks and Garson walks,” screamed Karlene Gordon as she and a handful of protestors from the Voices of Women Organizing Project (VOW) stood across the street of Brooklyn Family Court on Jay Street Monday afternoon. “Gerald Garson and his partner in crime Paul Siminovsky deceived, corrupted and destroyed lives with judicial immunity and protection. Sentenced to a county club, resort-like prison, then allowed to escape his judicial slap on the wrist, Garson’s early release from jail is a slap in the faces of those lives he irreparably destroyed,” she added. “He will complete his sentence, yet the families he injured, on so many different levels, are still serving the sentence this felon imposed on them. His victims continue to suffer in silence without justice or recourse.”

Gordon said she knows about suffering in silence all too well.

Ten years ago Siminovsky helped her ex-husband get full custody of their children under what she claimed to be bogus circumstances. She’s still fighting to get custody. The case was never re-opened, despite Simonovsky’s arrest and conviction for bribing Garson.

VOW, an assemblage of domestic violence survivors working to reform the New York Family Court system, said Garson’s arrest was an example on how domestic abuse victims are further abused when they are forced to stand in front of easily swayed jurists with dollar signs in their eyes.

In 2007, Garson was convicted of bribe receiving and receiving a reward for official misconduct after he was charged with throwing divorce cases to whichever lawyer could feed his hunger for fine food and pricey vacations.

Siminovsky was one of those lawyers. In fact, after he found himself in a spot of trouble, he offered to take part in the sting that took Garson down.

At his sentencing, Garson said that he was “profoundly sorry” for his behavior and that he was “appalled, embarrassed and ashamed” of his conduct.

He was sentenced to three to seven years in prison, yet a state law passed in 1997 allowed his sentencing to be reduced by one-sixth if he holds a “good prison record and accomplishes the milestones that were set for him,” a spokesperson for the New York State Department of Correctional Services said.

“There has been 30,000 inmates who have taken advantage of this small reduction,” the spokesperson said.

Garson was transferred from Mid-State Correctional Facility in Marcy, New York, to the Fulton Correctional Facility in Harlem back on October 2. He will remain in a temporary release program until his full release on December 23 -- six months early.

A spokesperson for the Kings County District Attorney’s office did not comment on Garson’s early release.

Last month, Michael Vecchione, chief of the DA’s Rackets Division, sent a letter to the New York Department of Parole, demanding that the early release be halted.

“This was an overwhelming case of greed, of selling his office for drinks, lunches, dinners and gifts and of violation of the trust the voters and citizens of Brooklyn placed in him,” Vecchione wrote. “He should serve all the time the law requires him to serve.”

Original Article-

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In the article above they mention Karlene Gordon. Karlene is my sister from a different mista (Photo Above in the red jacket) She asked me if I would post her entire speach..
Ummm yeah.. of course I will!

Here Goes... Karlene Gordon's Garson Speach in full!

Gerald Garson and his partner in crime, Law Guardian, Paul Siminovsky, deceived, corrupted and destroyed lives with judicial immunity and protection. These two felons preyed on defenseless families while disregarding the safety and well being of children and victims of domestic violence. Their success was guaranteed by misusing and abusing their trusted positions as the lawyer for children and the judgeship. Garson and Siminovsky were provided the ultimate protection from the law, by the law.

The same way in which the Securities Exchange Commission failed to protect the public against the likes of Bernie Madoff, the New York State Commission on Judicial misconduct and the Office of Court Administration failed to protect children and parents from the likes of Gerald Garson and Paul Siminovsky. Both of whom are now disbarred felons.

Sentenced to a country club, resort-like-prisons, then allowed to escape his judicial slap on the wrist, Garson’s early release from jail is a slap in the faces of those lives he irreparably destroyed. He will complete his sentence, yet the families he injured, on so many different levels, are still serving the sentence this felon imposed on them….his victims continue to suffer in silence without justice and recourse.

What is to be said of a judicial system that trivializes the destruction of our most vulnerable population by those with unchecked power.

We are here to denounce this mockery of justice by the Courts.

We will not stay quiet while this criminal element, Gerald Garson, is let loose... free to go home while the children he unconscionably sold to the highest bidding parents are still estranged and alienated.

We will not stay quiet while the parents from whom these children were stolen remain stigmatized, demonized and non-custodial...

We will not remain quiet lest our silence is misinterpreted as consent...

The countless complaint against Paul Siminovsky by Family Court litigants were never validated by any regulatory body. Although he was eventually found guilty of bribery and corruption, none of his Family Court cases were ever reviewed for the same offense.
Does this mean that lawyers and Judges are free to break the law in Family Court because there is absolutely no accountability... with cash, cigars and a hand shake, offenders are certain to escape prosecution.

Garson and Siminovsky were not prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, but I, as one of Siminovsky’s back door paychecks continue to be persecuted by his corruption.

Where is the justice and early release for me, my son and all the other parents who lost custody and have been alienated from their children based on this 'custody for sale' scheme.
We are disgusted with the system and its abuses which are exhibited by its re-victimization of survivors of DV.

Although we, the Voices of Women and Advocates against DV, have made recommendation for DV training of Court personnel which to some extent have been implemented, there is still a lack of adherence and accountability.


I recommend that an outside body, comprising of survivors, advocates, civilians and other professional, be put in place to receive complaints of judicial misconduct.

This complaint review body must be transparent and available to the public, who will monitor those who routinely violate the rights of litigants 10 complaints of blatant prejudice, bias, disregard for the law or impaired judgment, must result in an investigation.

Those under scrutiny must step down from their positions pending the outcome of the inquiry.
I recommend that Judges, Referees, Magistrates and Law Guardians be subject to routine Psychiatric Evaluations by accredited psychiatrists, none of whom can be connected to the Courts.

The results of the evaluation must be available to the public.

Anyone found to be unfit must step down from his or her position

I recommend that Family Court discontinues its practice of providing batterers and abusers with the legal platform they need to continue their history of abuse.

Because we are witnessing


The question is..

How many lawyers and judges did these two convicted felons mentor and corrupt.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Special Request for a dear dear worrier in the family rights fight..

Hello.. fellow family rights advocates...

Today I have a special post. I don't know how many of you know Gail Head from Texas.. but I've personally met her and I would do anything I can for her!

Above is a quilt she hand made with pictures of children that have been il[legally] kidnapped she had everyone send her a personal patch reminding them of their children with either a picture on it or just words.. and she displayed that quilt at every rally all over the world.

Below is a Utube video of her at the D.C. rally displaying the Awareness Quilt-

Her and I met in D.C. in 2007- I had sent her my babies pictures embedded on fabric from a pair of old corduroy pants I had from my daughter and I can't tell you the feeling I got when I had seen her work- what she did was AMAZING!!!

Well it's time to give back--- Gail had a fire that tore her house down to the ground.. she had nothing!

Please, if anyone has anything that they can use-- clothing- anything please get in touch with me and I'm waiting for her to email me back so I know where the stuff can be sent. I've met Gail and she's a tiny woman- I'd guess a size 5.. but I will ask her in my reply email. As for Hubby I have no idea, but will find out!

I told her in an email that I wanted anything to be sent directly to her in Texas.. so for now I'll be taking names and email addresses of anyone willing to help. One I get an address I'll forward it to any emails I have.

PLEASE it's Christmas time-- and Gail has given her heart and soul to strangers.. she has spent countless hours helping those less fortunate she's gone to court with more families than I can count.. it's time to give back!
Gail did not ask for anything- ans who knows if she'll get upset that I'm asking on her behalf but to bad-- LOL -- She helps EVERYONE-- It's her turn to receive!

Here's her original email..

First let me say, I appreciate the concerns, prayers, and thoughtfulness of each and everyone this message is being sent to~!!!

Hubby and I are alive and were not injured, at least physically anyway.

Emotionally, well, that's another story. We are both still in shock.

Here is what happened:

We left town after work and arrived at home a short time later only to find our home engulfed in flames when we got to the property.

I was on the phone with a close friend and started yelling that the house was on fire and burning. I gave her the address and she called 911, and I also called them when I hung up with her. They got there as quick as they could and finally got it out, but everything was destroyed with it burning to the ground.

The only thing left was the clothes on our backs.

What hurts emotionally even more was the loss of our parrots and birds and the sentimentals items that simply can never be replaced. All but 2 of the birds were talkers. We also lost at least 1 or 2 of the cats. We had thought and believed last night that all but one of them had perished in the fire and at first, didn't think any had survived.

After the fire was out, 1 of the kittens came out from hiding and came to me. Another kitten finally came out but was too scared and would not let me catch it. We had believed that only the 2 of them had survived. However, when hubby went to the property to feed the horses, outside dogs, and all the fine feathered farm family members this evening, Goldie, the mother of the kittens and the 3rd kitten came out of hiding.

They were still too scared and would not let hubby catch them, so he put out food for them, but at least they are alive. Will try tomorrow to catch them and bring them into town with us.

Red Cross has helped us last night and tonight with a place to stay, some money for food, essentials, and a change of clothes. Local thrift stores also gave us some clothes today as well as a few friends who brought clothes and other things to us.

Hubby's work, Atwood's Home & Farm has been awesome today too. Could not ask for an employer to be any more supportive than they are. My shop is OK. My landlord for it is an awesome lady and landlord~!!!

So hubby still has his job and I still have my shop. I'll get back to work in it as soon as I can think straight enough to concentrate on what I'm doing. Right now, we are both just very overwhelmed with what has happened and the decisions we are now going to be facing.too many unanswered questions.

Can't even begin to say how, what,where, when, or anything about anything. This was not rental property. We have a land mortgage, but we didn't have a house payment - it was paid for, and no, living in the country where we were, no fire hydrants and insurance premiums not affordable, there was no insurance.

In answer to the question --- will we stay there or move? Yes, we will stay and rebuild as we can.

If you write or email, please give me a little time to respond, but I will answer as soon as I can.

Take care everyone.

Until later............


PS --- permission granted to share this message with anyone wishing to read it.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

National Organization for Women-NYS Denounces Judge Garson's Early Release

ALBANY, NY (12/05/2009)(readMedia)--

Former Judge Gerald Garson was convicted of taking bribes from parents in custody disputes. He is being released six months earlier than his minimum sentence.

NOW New York State, the Battered Mothers Custody Conference, and other domestic violence and court reform advocates denounce the early release of Ex-Judge Garson. This is indicative of the pervasive corruption, cronyism, and conflict of interest that permeates our state's and its nation's family court system.

Judge Garson was given early release, after having been convicted of a crime. Yet thousands upon thousands of survivors of domestic violence, whose children have been taken away from them and given to their abusive ex-partners through improper court practices and judges like Mr. Garson, will never be released from the anguish of losing their children.

The citizens of New York State can no longer tolerate investigations where the fox is watching the hen house. On behalf of thousands of battered mothers in New York State, we call for a thorough, impartial, citizen-involved review of the NYS family court system. Until this serious review takes place, women and children will continue to be at risk.

Original Article--

National Organization for Women-NYS Denounces Judge Garson's Early Release

Now anyone that knows me KNOWS how much I despise the political BS of this group-- but this story is a fair one and I know that first hand-- so here is it.

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Saturday, December 5, 2009

Mother, Son Reunite After Two Decades

HALABJA, Iraq (Dec. 5) --

Six families nervously awaited the DNA tests on the young man who returned from Iran. They wondered: Could this be their son who was just an infant in 1988 and somehow lived through a deadly chemical attack by Saddam Hussein's regime?

There was absolute silence as the judge announced the lab results. The man, who called himself Ali, was deemed to be the sole surviving child of 58-year-old Fatima Mohammed Salih, who had lost her husband and all her other six children in the poison gas clouds that covered the mostly Kurdish city of Halabja.

For the first time in more than two decades, they embraced.

"I'm in a dream," said 21-year-old Ali Pour as he comforted the weeping woman.

The reunion Friday in Iraq's northern Kurdish region was the rarest of artifacts from Halabja: a moment of joy from the day the city became an open cemetery for an estimated 5,600 people killed when lethal gas was dropped by Saddam's military.

It was part of Saddam's brutal 1987-88 campaign to crush a Kurdish rebellion. Nearly 200,000 people died in Baghdad's scorched-earth offensive.

The alleged mastermind of the Halabja attack, Saddam's cousin known as "Chemical Ali" Hassan al-Majid, is among regime officials who have been sentenced to death for the Kurdish crackdown and other crimes. The trial specifically on Halabja is still under way.

It's the only known case of a long-lost child from Halabja being definitively reunited with a relative. The assistant chief of the Directorate of the Martyrs of Halabja, Abdul Rahman Yasin, said 41 names — children at the time of the attack — are still registered as missing.

"I wonder if it is a dream or a gift from God," said his newfound mother.
She repeated her son's birth name: Zimnaku Mohammed Saleh.

She then recalled the day Halabja was attacked. The family was at home. There was utter panic. They first ran into the streets and then went back inside.

"We didn't know where to go," she said. "Zimnaku, the 4-month-old, was on my lap and suddenly my older son screamed saying, 'Mother, I feel like I'm burning.' I tried to help him and my other sons, too. But it was in vain. I saw them dying in front of me. I collapsed and the next thing I remember is lying in a hospital bed in Tehran."

As Ali Pour learned the fate of his Kurdish family, his own story was told through translators. Pour speaks only Farsi and knows only life in eastern Iran — far from the Kurdish region that straddles Iraq, Iran and Turkey.

"The baby Ali survived for three days," said his adopted uncle, Habib Hamid Pour.
He was found by the Iranian military, which had moved into Halabja after the gas attack. It was the closing months of a horrific war between the two countries that began in 1980 and many of the Halabja survivors were taken to Tehran.

The infant boy was brought to a hospital with plans to send him eventually to an orphanage, said the uncle. But his sister, Kubra Pour, offered to care for the boy along with her two children in the Iranian city of Mashhad.

"My adopted mother was nice," said Pour, who was dressed in traditional Kurdish clothing of baggy pants, tunic and scarf tucked into his belt. "When I entered primary school at age 6, she told me I am from the Kurdish people from Halabja. She said I should return someday to meet my relatives."

Four months ago, his adopted mother was killed in a car accident, Pour said.
"I felt lonely and I felt a strange feeling calling me to return to the arms of my relatives," he said. "I decided to go back."

He contacted Iranian officials who kept records on the Halabja survivors brought to Iran. They contacted Halabja officials, who answered that six families said they were missing a boy who would now be Pour's age. A judge asked for DNA tests from a medical lab in Jordan.

Amazing pics and Original Article - Iraqi Son, Mother Torn Apart by War, Reunite

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Dad Sought in Wisconsin Deaths of 2 Daughters and Their Mothers

MADISON, Wis. — Wisconsin authorities on Saturday searched for a father who they say is linked to the deaths of his two young daughters and their mothers. The man has been charged in two of the murders and police have warned that he is armed and dangerous.

Tyrone Adair, 38, of Middleton, was charged Friday with first-degree intentional homicide in the deaths of his 33-year-old girlfriend, Tracy Judd, and their 23-month-old daughter, Deja Adair. Judd's older daughter told detectives Adair called her Thursday to say her mother and Deja would not be home because they had been in a bad accident.

Their bodies were found that night in Middleton inside the trunk of Adair's car, less than three hours after another of Adair's daughters and that girl's mother were found shot to death in Madison, authorities said. The coroner identified those killed in Madison as Amber Weigel, 25, and Neveah Weigel-Adair, 2.

Madison Police spokesman Joel DeSpain called Tyrone Adair armed and dangerous Friday. His photograph was distributed to law enforcement nationwide.

"At this point in time we don't know where this guy has gone," DeSpain said.

Court records indicate Adair was involved in paternity cases with Judd and Weigel, whose family issued a statement late Friday through Madison police saying they were "deeply devastated" and asking friends to "help ensure the safety of the rest of this family by refraining from making any comments or releasing any information."

Police were called to Weigel's duplex on Madison's southwest side around 6 p.m. Thursday and found the bodies of Weigel and her daughter inside a vehicle in the garage.

Around 8:30 p.m., Madison police asked officers in nearby Middleton to locate another vehicle. Officers found it in an apartment complex parking lot with the bodies of Judd and her daughter in the trunk, according to a court documents.

Judd had suffered a head injury, Middleton Police Lt. Noel Kakuske said. The Dane County Coroner's Office did not release specifics about how she and her daughter died, other than to say Friday that they were "victims of homicidal attacks that were not related to firearms."

No charges had been filed in the Madison case Friday, but Dane County District Attorney Brian Blanchard said he filed the charges in the case of Judd and her daughter so police could issue a warrant for Adair's arrest.

According to a criminal complaint, Judd's older daughter told detectives Adair had moved into their Middleton house a few days before Christmas Day 2007 — Deja Adair's birthday. She said she last saw him about 4 p.m. Thursday.

The girl said Adair called her about 7:20 p.m., told her he was behind a Wal-Mart in Dodgeville, about 50 miles from Middleton, and said her mother and Deja wouldn't be home because they'd been in a bad accident.

When Madison detectives investigating the shootings there learned of the phone call, they asked Middleton police to find Adair's vehicle, leading to the discovery of the bodies in the trunk. Police released a still shot from a camera inside a bar next to the parking lot that shows Adair was there Thursday afternoon.

"It's possible it was just a random location to leave the vehicle," Kakuske said.

Court records show Adair and Judd reached a court settlement in 2008 acknowledging Adair was Deja's father. A family court commissioner ordered Judd, who also used her married name of Tracy Graser, and Adair to share custody of the child because they were living together.

Police tape encircled Judd's ranch-style home Friday morning. Sheriff's deputies came and went from the house. All the blinds were drawn. A child's plastic playhouse sat in the backyard.

In the other paternity case, a court commissioner ruled in March 2008 that Adair was Neveah's father after Amber Weigel petitioned the court for a paternity judgment. The two were ordered to share custody and Adair to pay Weigel child support and birth expenses.

Weigel, who was an assistant teacher for the toddler class at Montessori Children's House, was "so proud of what she had become and what she did with her life," her family's statement said.

The family also offered prayers to Adair's family, "particularly to Tyrone's mother because she has also lost a granddaughter, and they have lost a cherished family member."

Dad Sought in Wisconsin Deaths of 2 Daughters and Their Mothers - Local News News Articles National News US News - FOXN...

Thursday, December 3, 2009

The case is Pottawattamie County, Iowa, v. McGhee and Harrington.

This isn't my normal type of post but lemme tell you.. this is a must read!

People think about it-- can this happen to you or yours? Why not!

At Supreme Court: Can prosecutors be sued for framing defendants?

Two African-American men wrongly imprisoned for 25 years filed a lawsuit against prosecutors for fabricating evidence against them. The Supreme Court hears the case Wednesday.

By Warren Richey Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor
from the November 3, 2009 edition

Washington - The US Supreme Court on Wednesday is set to consider an unusual question: Do Americans who have been framed by unscrupulous prosecutors for crimes they did not commit have a right to sue the prosecutors when the fraud is finally exposed?

According to the Obama administration, the answer is no.

Solicitor General Elena Kagan argues in a friend of the court brief that local, state, and federal prosecutors must enjoy absolute immunity from citizen lawsuits - even when they sent innocent men to prison for life by fabricating incriminating evidence and hiding exculpatory evidence.

Those are the allegations in a case from Iowa set for oral argument on Wednesday morning. According to legal briefs filed in the case, prosecutors in Pottawattamie County, Iowa, solicited false testimony implicating two innocent African-American teens in the murder of a recently retired police officer in 1977. At trial, the false testimony led to their convictions. They were sent to prison for life.

When the false testimony and other exculpatory evidence was discovered, the two innocent men, Curtis McGhee and Terry Harrington, were released after 25 years in prison. They filed a lawsuit against the prosecutors.

The question before the high court is whether the prosecutors can be held accountable in a civil trial or instead are entitled to absolute immunity from such lawsuits.

"If the allegations here are true, [the Iowa officials] engaged in prosecutorial misconduct of an execrable sort, involving a complete breach of the public trust," Solicitor General Kagan writes in her brief to the court. "But absolute immunity reflects a policy judgment that such conduct is properly addressed not through civil liability, but through a host of other deterrents and punishments. "

Absolute vs. qualified immunity

Lawyers for Mr. McGhee and Mr. Harrington argue in their briefs that police officers who fabricate evidence do not enjoy such absolute protection from a civil lawsuit. They say prosecutors who actively participate in the pre-trial investigation of a case must be held to the same standard as police officers, detectives, and agents, who can be sued if they violate clearly-established constitutional rights.

"When law enforcement officers fabricate evidence with an intent to use it to deprive innocent citizens of their liberty, they violate the Constitution, " writes Paul Clement, a former US Solicitor General who is arguing the case for McGhee and Harrington.

"The framing of innocent African-American citizens for a crime they did not commit, lies at the core of what Congress sought to prevent in the Civil Rights statutes," Mr. Clement says in his brief.

Lawyers for the two prosecutors counter that there is no constitutional right "not to be framed."

The critical question is whether the trial is fair, they say. The constitutional infraction occurs not when the false statements are first obtained, but when they are introduced at trial. Since prosecutors enjoy absolute immunity from lawsuits related to the actions they take at trial, any false testimony cannot form the basis of a lawsuit against a prosecutor, they say.

Attorneys general from 27 states and the District of Columbia filed a friend of the court brief urging the high court to embrace this broader view of absolute prosecutor immunity.

However, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Cato Institute, and the American Civil Liberties Union argue for a lower level of immunity that offers prosecutors protection from lawsuits except when they have violated a clearly-established constitutional right.

Confidence in justice system

New Jersey-based group Black Cops Against Police Brutality also filed a friend of the court brief in the case.

"This case is not just about drawing a good lawyerly line between precedents," writes Chicago lawyer Mark Herrmann in a brief for the group. "The facts are that Terry Harrington and Curtis McGhee are black and once were young, and that [the murder victim] was white and had been a police captain. Together, these facts made it easy for [the prosecutors] and their accomplices to frame Harrington and McGhee for murder."

Mr. Herrmann writes: "We can imagine few rulings of this Court that would send a more negative message about American criminal justice than to permit white prosecutors to frame African-American suspects for the murder of a white police officer, admit the outrage, and then walk away with impunity, after their victims have wrongfully suffered twenty-five years in prison."

The case is Pottawattamie County, Iowa, v. McGhee and Harrington.

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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

VT Judge Awards Custody to Non-Biological Mom- Due to Parent Alienation

by Kilian Melloy
Monday Nov 30, 2009

A long-running custody dispute has culminated in a Vermont judge ordering the former partner of a child’s biological mother to assume custody of the child. The anti-gay Christian press says that the seven-year-old child, Isabella, is a "stranger" to her new custodial parent, Janet Jenkins, and that Isabella had "violent reactions" whenever she was in Jenkins’ care due to her "lesbian lifestyle." But according to lawyer and family court expert Kurt Hughes of Burlington, Vermont, the outcome is typical of certain custodial cases in which one parent repeatedly refuses to abide by a court-ordered custody arrangement.

"Even though it’s hit the headlines because this happens to be a same-sex couple, this is a very basic family law that we’re talking about," Hughes told local news station WCAX, which reported on the case in a Nov. 23 article.

"There’s something called parental alienation syndrome, in which one parent is constantly bad mouthing the other parent," Hughes explained. "And so the courts over the years have decided that the potential long term psychological impact to a child from that type of behavior is much greater than the temporary disruption that would result from a child changing households from one parent to the other." The biological mother, Lisa Miller, has been ordered to relinquish custody of daughter Isabella to Jenkins by the start of the new year. Miller will retain visitation rights. If she does not comply, she may end up in prison.

Vermont Family Court Judge William Cohen ruled that the change of custody was necessary because the dispute had the capacity to harm the child more than a change of custody would. Wrote Judge Cohen, "Ms. Miller’s interference with the relationship between (the child) and Ms. Jenkins have become so pervasive that it now outweighs the potential harm that could occur to the child by a chance of custody."

But to Christian pundits, the case represents a precedent in which the state takes a child from her biological mother in favor of a non-biological former same-sex partner.

Miller’s lawyer, Mat Staver, is also the founder of the right wing--and anti-gay--Liberty Counsel, which has ties to Jerry Falwell’s religious organization. Staver was one of two sources quoted in a Nov. 25 article posted at, a Focus on the Family-affiliated Web publication. The other source quoted in the article was a professor at the right-wing Christian Liberty University School of Law.

Said Staver, "This judge in Vermont ultimately ruled that he is going to switch custody from Lisa Miller, and take her own biological daughter Isabella and move her from Virginia and put her into an activist lesbian household up in Vermont with a person she really doesn’t know, who’s not her biological mother, and frankly who’s not acted as a parent."

Staver claimed that Isabella responded negatively to Jenkins’ so-called "lesbian lifestyle," saying, "Every time that the visitation actually occurred, Isabella had violent reactions, because Janet exposed her to the lesbian lifestyle." Staver claimed that Jenkins "tried to convince her that she has two moms and even tried to scare her by saying that she was going to be taken from Lisa and transferred to Vermont."

The article painted Miller’s refusal; to comply with the court-ordered custodial arrangement due to the "violent reactions" that Isabella allegedly exhibited to spending with Jenkins. However Jenkins painted a much different picture, saying, "[M]y daughter completely knows me. We were together ten months ago. I mean, she adores me. She calls me Mama."

The case has raged for six years between the former life partners, who had entered into a civil union together before Miller conceived Isabella via artificial insemination. When their relationship ended, Miller relocated from Vermont to Virginia and became a Baptist.

The custody dispute went all the way to the state supreme court of both states. Vermont’s Supreme Court recognized Jenkins’ parental relationship with Isabella, and the Vermont state Supreme Court found--despite a Virginia law that excludes same-sex families from any legal recognition--that while Miller would receive custody of Isabella, Jenkins would retain visitation rights. It is that arrangement that Judge Cohen’s ruling reversed.

Cohen’s ruling was denounced by Liberty University School of Law professor Rena Lindevaldsen, who told, "To have the first reported decision in the country stripping a biological mother of her child, solely because she has refused to give visitation to a legal stranger, is shocking." Added Lindevaldsen, "There’s a lot of talk nowadays about drawing that line in the sand and understanding that government can’t order certain things. When you’re ordering a child to be stripped from her biological mother, you’ve got to wonder, has the court overstepped its bounds?"

Staver cited the case as illustrative of the perils of granting same-sex families full legal recognition, telling Newsweek in a Dec. 6, 2008 article that, "Lisa Miller’s case illustrates two things in regards to same-sex marriages. First, one state cannot adopt same-sex unions without affecting the sister states. It’s simply impossible. Secondly, these cases are about real people, and children are particularly caught in the tangled legal web of same-sex marriage, and Isabella is a classic example."

In that same article, however, Jenkins offered a glimpse into what the case has meant for her. "I did not divorce my child, I divorced my partner," she said. "Yet I’ve missed out on my child’s kindergarten graduation. I’ll never get that back. I don’t even get to talk to my daughter on the phone. It’s heinous what has transpired."

Whether children of same-sex couples are more at risk of such legal entanglement than are children of feuding heterosexual former spouses may be a point of debate. When it does happen that dissolving same-sex unions involve children, however, what holds sway is the very same patchwork of legal rights and status that can change the legal standing of a family’s members from one state to the next simply by crossing a border: while Vermont, where the women lived while together and where Jenkins still resides, now offers marriage equality, Virginia, where Miller relocated, specifically denies any legal recognition of same-sex families at all. Attorney Joseph Price, who represents Jenkins, told Newsweek, "You cannot just shop your case around in different states until you get a ruling in your favor. And that’s essentially what Lisa has tried to do."

In that article, Miller, too, opened up, saying that she had a conversion experience while attending a Baptist church and decided to walk away from her lesbian identity. "I do not feel safe leaving my daughter with her," Miller told Newsweek, referring to Jenkins, "and I believe I have a God-given and constitutional right to raise my child as I see fit." Continued Miller, "There is a homosexual agenda at work here, and Isabella is a pawn in their game. It has nothing to do with the law. Isabella was saved at age 4, loves God, and knows what’s right and what’s wrong. We don’t hate Janet, we pray for her soul and salvation."

Kilian Melloy reviews media, conducts interviews, and writes commentary for EDGEBoston, where he also serves as Assistant Arts Editor.

Link to Original Article- VT Judge Awards Custody to Non-Biological Mom :: EDGE Boston

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