I have met and heard the tragic stories of many parents. PA is a function, by and large, of a custodial ex-partner, although some alienation can start while the couple is still together.

This blog is a story of experiences and observations of dysfunctional Family Law (FLAW), an arena pitting parent against parent, with children as the prize. Due to the gender bias in Family Law, that I have observed, this Blog has evolved from a focus solely on PA to one of the broader Family/Children's Rights area and the impact of Feminist mythology on Canadian Jurisprudence and the Divorce Industry.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A challenge to debate Shared and Equal Parenting

Article by Dave Flook, posted April 21/09 I'm Dave Flook from the London, Ontario based fathers rights/equal parenting organization Not All Dads Are Deadbeats (www.notalldadsaredeadbeats.com). I have started up a new campaign to call out the politicians, judges, lawyers etc. and challenge them to a public debate on the subject of equal parenting and the current climate of the Canadian family law system. With so many dads being systematically removed from their children's lives I am seeking accountability. Surely, someone who creates or enforces these laws has the integrity to stand up for them. If nobody answers my challenge and if nobody has the integrity to show us why these laws are just then perhaps it's time to reconsider such laws. With 80% of the population supporting equal parenting this could be the campaign that has the marketing power to bring this fight to the masses and wake people up. I already have a venue for this debate. It will be held at the Wolf Performance Hall in London Ontario which seats 369 people. The date for the debate is Tuesday, September 15th 2009. I have put in $100.00 of my own money and will be seeking donations. The winner of the debate will be determined by a democratic vote. If the opposition "wins" then they will receive the full cash pot. If I "win" then the money in full will be donated to a third party children's organization. In no way do I want to make a single dime off this challenge. Please spread the word around. I will be writing a press release and trying to get it out. Also, contribute if you can! Imagine how much the media would eat this story up if there is a $10,000 pot!! My goal for this challenge is to get equal parenting in the news, on TV, and on radio. I will be calling Maurice Vellacott on Wednesday and seeing if I can get his personal endorsement. The event will be free to attend. I will be looking into streaming technology and seeing if I can webcast it live. Please watch the video and post it (using the youtube embed code) on your websites. Im putting my money and my reputation on the line with this one. Ideally, in a few weeks of exposure I would like to call out individuals in parliament personally. I can be reached at (519) 680-3932 if you would like to talk about my challenge and/or offer advice. Thanks for all your hard work everyone.... you all give me hope. (ed note: See video below or go directly to youtube. Leave positive comments for Dave he has done amazing work in a short period of time) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCYQmuZ-9Tg ~ Dave Flook Proud Father Not All Dads Are Deadbeats www.notalldadsaredeadbeats.com

Griffin-Sebuliba Case—Once Again Feminist ‘Family Courts Award Custody to Abusers’ Claims Don’t Hold Up

April 19th, 2009 by Glenn Sacks, MA for Fathers & Families

Back in 2007, Glenn did a piece on the case of April Griffin and Matthew Sebuliba, but when he did, the case was far from over (See Turns Out the April Griffin Custody Case is a Little Different than Feminist Bloggers Say). My guess is it’s still not, but here’s the latest. Read the most recent article here (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9/30/08) and a previous one here (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6/20/07).

Griffin and Sebuliba live in Milwaukee. He’s a native of Africa, but is a United States citizen and a nurse. Griffin gave birth to Sebuliba’s son and when she applied for welfare benefits, state authorities forced her to name the father. The state filed a paternity action and Sebuliba responded with a request for joint custody.

Griffin followed that with a series of actions her own attorney called “outrageous.” She claimed, apparently without evidence, that Sebuliba had physically abused her. She claimed that allowing him to change the child’s diaper was “against her religion.” Child welfare workers stated that Griffin became hysterical during a supervised visit by Sebuliba, saying the child was not breathing, and demanded that 911 be called. EMS personnel determined that the boy was fine.

In court, she insisted on conducting the custody hearing herself, which resulted in the judge awarding custody not to her but to Sebuliba. After that, she took the boy and hid him in violation of multiple court orders. She spent 8 months in jail for contempt of court, during which the child never was found.

Once she was released from jail, the police eventually were able to locate the child in September, 2008. The boy was diagnosed with rickets, a disease resulting from severe malnutrition in which bones become fragile. In a confrontation with police, Griffin hugged the toddler so tightly that apparently she broke an arm and a leg.

As of September, the boy was due to be finally turned over to his father.

At the time Glenn wrote about this case, various feminist groups had already gone to bat for Griffin, claiming that the judge had granted custody to an abuser. One salient feature of the case is that, although Griffin claimed Sebuliba had abused her, the only evidence of abuse was of her abusing him. As in similar cases, such as Genia Shockome, Sadia Loeliger, Holly Collins, and Bridget Marks, groups supporting the mother tended to accept at face value claims made by the mother. And like those cases, judicial vetting of those claims found them to be false.

In any event, as of September, the child, who had never been in the father’s custody, was found to be suffering from a condition that comes about from being starved. Will the groups who fought so vocally for Griffin and against Sebuliba take notice?

My guess is they won’t, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look at this case and know it for what it is - the gatekeeping mother at or near her worst. Time and again we see mothers taking the most extreme actions including murder and kidnapping to enforce their idea of proper child custody.

We have a few studies on gatekeeping mothers - those who arrogate to themselves the power to decide what relationship a father may have with his child and the child with its father. Gatekeeping is seldom as egregious as it was when practiced by April Griffin. The phenomenon needs to be studied in more depth so that courts, lawmakers, psychologists and social workers can learn to spot it and deal with it effectively. More importantly, mothers need to learn to see the behavior in themselves, know that it is wrong and what to do to correct it.