|Why Mothers Are Running From Family Courts - and What Can Be Done About It |
by Amy Neustein with Michael Lesher
Published by University Press of New England
Book Reviewed by Carol Taylor
Queries: (718) 856 1271
Without exception, this scary book should be required reading for any mother considering prosecution of a husband (or boyfriend) she accuses of child abuse.
It firmly establishes that family 'court' decisions violate the Constitution's 14th Amendment rights and that it is really a 'Kangaroo court' operating on feelings and beliefs of humans carrying out stereotypical traditions instead of actual laws. (Need I say anymore here? - but I will!)
This is not only a 'must-read' tome, for anyone even remotely interested in this nation's children and their families, but as a result of the admirable documentation, perhaps one day the reprehensible lack of publicscrutiny/oversight over family 'court' might begin to be remedied.
A nation is judged by its treatment of its children.
The case studies are as riveting as they are horrific: a prime case of course, is the 'Rikering' of a mother called D'Andrea, jailed, for talking (on her cable show in Manhattan) about her daughter's sexual abuse and, in her extremity-because no one believed her, revealing on air a photo of her police detective husband allegedly molesting the child.
The book might be a bit difficult for a lay person to get through because of all of the 'lelgalese' such as 'sui generis,' 'pro se' and 'ex parte,' but the routine, harrowing, unfair, punitive, retrogressive treatment of women who are mothers going through misogynistic altogether frustrating labyrinthine formalities had to be revealed and the authors have done society a magnificent favor by putting the case 'out there.'
The U.S.A has been judged by Neustein and Lesher, and found embarassingly wanting, "...as we have seen, violations of due process rights are by no means uncommon." This frightening book, aside from describing what they call "judicial prejudice posing as psychology," cites so many incidents of alleged child sexual abuse that one can only wonder, knowing how such abused individuals routinely engage in passing on to others their abusive treatment, what horrible unforseen effects (of their own abuse) continue escalating in our communities.
The negation of human rights of mothers is frightening; the abuse of children is frightening; the scamming of the public into believing that family court is a 'regular' legal court is frightening; the family court's protecting of abusive fathers (and in some cases abusive mothers) is frightening; the replete arrogance and anti-social, illogical behavior of the family court judges is frightening; the collusion against mothers, of attorneys, social workers, et al., which allows for the continuation of child abuse by fathers awarded custody of their child victims is past frightening. Moreover, the authors firmly allege that the "confidentiality rule" regarding allegations of sexual abuse does not protect the children and urgently needs to be removed.
The public should welcome the astonishing information that family 'court,' (like Housing 'court'), according to the authors, is "a breed apart" and is actually an administrative set up - not a true 'judicial' entity.
As I dry my tears, I have to say, I've seldom read of a more egregious, counterproductive, outrageous societal "open secret" as the Neustein/Lesher account of family 'court' goings-on: God help the Mothers and Children of this country.
This book, even with all of its 'legalese,' will surely go down in history as the "Silent Spring"* of the arena of judicial jurisprudence.