Today I started my day by reading three different stories where incidents had occurred between a woman and a man. The man was definitely in the wrong in each story, providing that the stories were accurately reported, but what struck me was where each story led. Three different writers all ended up with the same theme, one man did a bad thing and therefore all men are bad and women were cautioned to expect the exact same incident from any and all the men that they know.
This seems to be the norm now – the idea that a man is a rapist/pig/stupid/violent/abusive animal, incapable of participating in the same world that women occupy. The jokes are no longer good-natured and funny. Instead, there is a decided barb to every comment women seem to make about men. Women are even translating that into promoting and celebrating violence against men. Continue reading
Family Law Reform Coalition – Press Release for 01.02.2016 “Australia’s Family Courts on Trial.” A must read for everyone!!
I received a phone call this morning from a young woman who asked me to check my email. She had sent me a copy of Family Law Reform Coalition press release. I was impressed because in her little corner of her world, where much of life passes her by on a regular basis, she was awake enough to care about what is on her plate. She is not likely ever going to be anyone that the world will know, but with each event in her life, she is waking up, paying attention and engaging. I admire her for that.
An overhaul of Family Court is due in most countries. The only people who do not understand the need for this, are those who have never had to use it.
Family court, unlike any of the other courts, makes allowance for people’s emotions during a difficult time, which is the only excuse I come up for as to why they do not enforce the basic rules and codes of conduct that are upheld in the other courts. The most blatant of which is the amount of lying that goes on. People lie in their affidavits. They lie to the court ordered psychologists and psychiatrists. They lie in their testimony. They lie for themselves. They lie for their families and friends. And those lies are often proven during the course of the case that is being decided, and NOTHING is done about it.
By nothing, I mean I have never heard anyone being charged with perjury, despite the same wording being on everything people sign regarding swearing that you are telling the truth and it being a criminal offense to lie.
The problem with this is that it leads to people lying to the Police, to Social Services, and to Maintenance. In some instances it is even teaching the children involved how to lie and that our courts do not deserve respect. Making you swear to tell the whole truth doesn’t actually mean the “true truth.” Based on these lies people’s lives are ruined, their wages are being garnisheed and charges and judgments are placed against them. Continue reading
Dialogue is the substance of effective problem solving. A topic alone can be too broad and ends up with people on opposing sides shouting rhetoric at one another that does not even remotely resemble the give and take of meaningful discussion. People come to these situations with a suitcase full of catchy phrases and half stated facts from half read articles that came to them on Facebook during one evening commute home on the train. The object of the exchange seems to be to unpack that suitcase as quickly as one can, flinging the phrases with all the strength you can muster, and then to grab the empty suitcase and head home. Continue reading
Recently, as I sat waiting for my husband, I overheard a conversation between two ladies. They were discussing their “handicapped” child who was now an adult. Woven into the conversation was all the pain of raising a child in a world that does not understand or make a lot of space for children with special needs. The mother talked about how difficult her life had been, trying to keep the balance between preparing her child and protecting him from the world. She talked about how she had to keep him from taking on activities he was sure to fail in. As the conversation progressed a few things became obvious. Continue reading