Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Government-Sponsored Child Abduction

All over the world, it seems, governments are trying – and often succeeding – in wresting control of children from their parents.

LifeSiteNews reported on October 25 that in Ireland, a “Children’s Rights Referendum” is likely to pass soon. According to opponents, this constitutional amendment

…is nothing more than a ploy by a power-mad State to grant itself the right to snatch children from parents and seize control over the most fundamental unit of society…

Critics have called the proposed amendment to the Constitution “a beachhead by the state into what has traditionally been the preserve of the rights of parents in the upbringing of their children”. The amendment’s wording allows state agents to remove children from the family and place them in care if they believe it is in the child’s “best interests”

This child was seized by the Swedish government in 2009;
the parents' crime is homeschooling.
If you look at some other European nations, you can see pretty clearly that this kind of legislation really results in parents not being able to be parents unless they agree with the State on whatever issues the State chooses to emphasize.  Germany and Sweden have long been on the warpath against homeschoolers, and it has not been uncommon for governments in those countries to remove children from their parents’ custody for the sole reason that homeschooling is occurring. And the reason they don’t like homeschooling is that homeschooling parents tend to go against the grain of whatever politically correct ideology is in force at the time.  Canada recently tried to prevent homeschooling parents from teaching their children that homosexual behavior is immoral; another Canadian homeschooling family was ordered to put their preschool-age children into state-funded daycare in order to achieve proper “socialization”.

I know there are cases where children are abused and need to be rescued from the parents who are harming them, but this sad situation is a far cry from removing a child from his parents’ custody because they are teaching him that homosexual behavior is wrong.

In general, I think the government’s right to seize children needs to be limited rather than expanded. That outlook comes from my own personal experience with a woman I knew in California whose children had been removed from her custody. The woman was slightly retarded (with an IQ of about 76, she barely was just under the legal IQ limit for “normal”), and there had been an accident where her younger child almost drowned; this was seen as an indication that she could not care for her children and keep them safe.

But the real reason (I believe) Child Protective Services (CPS) wanted to remove her children was that the county social services agencies in that city were providing employment for a lot of people, and they had to keep the industry going. In the course of trying to help this woman, I discovered that low income families seemed to be the prey of the CPS workers. They would be accused of some sort of neglect (not usually abuse), and their children would be removed. Having no money, these parents would have to accept a court-appointed public defender; and I quickly discovered that the “good-ol’-boy” network meant that all the attorneys – whether working for the county or providing counsel for the parents – were in it together. They had a system, a standard way of dealing with each case, and the parents’ attorneys never questioned it: take the kids and place them in foster care; then make the parents (or more often, just the single mother) jump through some hoops, like taking parenting classes, drug-and-alcohol abuse classes, and “anger management” classes. Parents were standardly told just to go along with the game, and they’d have their kids back in no time. Meanwhile, the people running all those programs were kept employed.

In addition, there was one social worker who was determined to find sexual abuse in every case that came her way…and she did not want to be burdened with facts and evidence to the contrary; nor was she past inventing evidence for non-existent sexual abuse.

In my friend’s case, the children were removed and the battle was enjoined. I found an attorney who was not in league with the devil rest of the county-sponsored attorneys who agreed to take the case . We fought the system, and it wasn’t easy. I found myself in court as a witness, and discovered that attorneys don’t ask honest questions – call me naïve, but I was really shocked at this.

I also found that parents’ actions toward their children can be construed as negative and even harmful whether or not they actually are. For instance, my friend was criticized for her lack of parenting ability when it was noted that she bought roller skates for her little girl and proceeded to try to teach her to use them on a concrete sidewalk. Ummm…where would you teach your child to roller skate? The CPS worker thought that a grass lawn would be a better option.

And then there was the dirty dishes scenario: “There are dirty dishes in the sink!” said the reports. A number of mothers to whom I mentioned this gasped in horror and said, “Oh my gosh! There are dirty dishes in my sink at home right now!”

Was my retarded friend the ideal mother? No. (Neither am I!) And she had help available to her because of her disability; that’s what finally led to her children being returned to her.

But let me ask all you parents this: How do you think it would affect your relationship with your children to have the removed from your care for over 2 years, with only weekly 2-hour visits allowed? Consider, too, that the children were 2 and 4 years old at the time of removal, and were placed in multiple foster homes over that 2-1/2 year period.

How do you think it affects a child’s view of his parents’ authority to know that a CPS worker can “punish” the parent for “bad parenting”? In my friend’s case, her girls at times would threaten to call CPS if their mother tried to discipline them in any way!

Sometimes people asked me if I didn’t think the girls would be better off if they were permanently removed from their mother’s care and allowed to be adopted by families who were better off financially and intellectually. I suppose such a thing could be argued. On the other hand, God gave that woman those children, and in the best of all worlds, maybe the girls – who tested at normal intelligence – would have grown up and become able to aid and protect their mother in important ways.

Besides, the woman loved her daughters and wanted to care for them and protect them to the best of her ability, and that the girls were clearly emotionally attached to their mother in a secure and healthy way.

Well, I could go on and on. I have file drawers full of notes and court documents from that time, just waiting to be written into a book! There’s so much pain there, though, that I’ve never seriously been able to take on the project.

Back to Ireland’s “Child Rights Referendum”: the LifeSiteNews article notes:

Father John I. Fleming Ph.D., Adjunct Professor of Bioethics, Southern Cross Bioethics Institute, Adelaide, South Australia Corresponding Member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, wrote a legal analysis of the amendment’s wording…

The current wording, he wrote, gives “explicit recognition of the family as the fundamental group unit of society which preceded the formation of the state”…

…The new wording, however, “represents a dramatic ideological shift” away from these fundamental principles. This shift, he said, is “away from the prior rights of the family, of parents, to bring up their children as they see fit”…

It’s a dangerous trend, though one that has been going on for a long, long time. It just seems like it’s gaining momentum now – especially with the “gay rights” agenda achieving so much power.

The slippery slope gets slippery-er, and the handbasket in which the world is going to hell seems to have become a roller coaster car on the downhill side of the tracks!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please be courteous and concise.