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Mothers of Lost Children to gather for White House vigil on Mothers Day

Editor’s note: The following press release was received from the California Protective Parents Association.

Mothers from across America who have lost their children because family courts ordered them into full custody or unsupervised visitation with their alleged abusers will gather for their first silent vigil at 11 am on Mothers’ Day, May 9, 2010 in front of the White House.

“We decided that Mother’s Day was the perfect time to stand vigil in front of the White House with mothers from all over America whose children are either dead or living in harm’s way because of the broken family court system,” said Connie Valentine, the vigil organizer and co-founder of the California Protective Parents Association.

Experts at the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence estimate that more than 58,000 children each year are either placed into dangerous homes or forced to go on unsupervised visits with their alleged abusers by divorce courts that simultaneously deny the children’s safe, protective parents access to their sexually and physically abused children.

The 11 a.m. silent vigil and 12 noon press conference will take place in front of Lafayette Square, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, D.C.

Mildred Muhammad, the ex-wife of the Beltway Sniper, will join grieving mothers who recently appeared on the Dr. Phil Show’s Crisis in the Family Courts. California mother Katie Tagle, whose nine-month old baby Wyatt was murdered by his father, and Illinois mother Amy Leichtenberg, whose two school-aged children, Duncan and Jack, were murdered by their father, will share their tragic stories of desperately trying to keep their children alive.

Advocates Kathleen Russell from the Center for Judicial Excellence and Eileen King from Justice for Children, who have been closely monitoring this escalating crisis for years, will discuss their work to expose and remedy the most under-reported human rights scandal in the United States.

These mothers of lost children are soccer moms, kindergarten teachers, physicians, flight attendants, dentists and homemakers. Most of them are middle class, educated and ordinary. They are safe, loving mothers (not addicts or abusers) who have been rendered powerless to protect their children from court-ordered child abuse. Most are battered women who tried to flee domestic abuse to save their children, only to end up mired in our nation’s family courts, unable to protect them at all.

“America’s Moms are coming to the President and First Lady to request a federal investigation into these horrific civil and human rights abuses.I need to make sure that that no parent has to ever go through this incredible pain again, and that my Duncan and Jack’s deaths mean something, ” said Amy Leichtenberg.

A cottage industry of mental health professionals and attorneys with cozy relationships with family court judges routinely bankrupt families with enormous court-ordered fees and often recommend that children be placed with their sexually or physically abusive fathers. Family court judges frequently ignore evidence of abuse, refuse to hear direct testimony from the children, and rubberstamp their cronies’ recommendations. Nurturing mothers are forced to pay costly fees to attend supervised visits with the children they raised, watching helplessly as their children continue to report abuse by their abusers to uncaring visitation monitors. Mothers who speak out about system failure often face judicial retaliation and lose what little time they have with their children. The unregulated cottage industry churns away, generating hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees to experts, while some of the worst cases settle only when the children turn 18. This is a national epidemic that is destroying families across America.

For information about the event, visit mothers-of-lost-children.com.



43 Comments on "Mothers of Lost Children to gather for White House vigil on Mothers Day"

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  1. Buttons says:

    Happy Mother’s Day

    Being a “mother” doesn’t necessarily mean birthing children into the world. To me, it means taking healthy risks to “make it” in this world.

    To all of the women who have taught me wisdom, agape, resourcefulness, and courage, may you be blessed ten-fold. Without the influence, guidance, and support of these incredible women, I would, for all intents and purposes, likely be buried, by now.

    Thank you, each and every one.



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  2. BloggerT7165 says:

    Oxy thank you for those kind words. The sad thing I see in many of of the different organizations, be they womens rights or mens rights groups, is that they often mean well and are trying to do well and do good but they miss the unintended consequences of their actions.

    This is not an issue about mothers versus fathers or even just a womens issue or a mens issue. It is a human issue and it effects everyone regardless of gender. A good number of groups have met with limited success and sometimes opposition because they do not seem to understand that this is an issue that all people are effected by and so all people should be a part of it. For example the press release could easily be seen as bashing fathers because of the way it is written. It was written as mothers versus fathers in the court system rather than good parents versus unfit parents leaving out the gender statements.

    When groups (men and womens rights) do this it really does not help and it causes as much harm as it does good. ALL children and ALL parents who are fit deserve to have the courts stand up for them and for the children. According to the CDC stats on child maltreatment more women (58%) than men (42%) are perpetrators( http://www.female-offenders.com/resources.html). So it is both men and women who are being abusive to children, both men and women who use and abuse the court system to enable them to further abuse children. If you look at children killed by their parents you will also find that the stats are pretty even for mothers and fathers.

    Until the men/womens rights groups step back and take a look at the entire picture, the entire truth, the entire data (current data not 10-20 year data) they will continue to face resistance and only limited success in what they are doing. Trying to demonize men or women, mothers or fathers as a whole is wrong and destructive and abusive itself. Trying to portray men or women, mothers or fathers as the perfect parent or the “natural” parent or nurturing one is just as wrong. Men and women, mothers and fathers are human beings. All of them a capable of great good, great hearts and great child rearing skills. They are also capable of the opposite. We should be trying to promote positive “parents” period no matter what gender they may be.

    My little rant is done now also. I hope all of you had a wonderful mothers days and to all you parents out there who fight the good fight to raise your children and do the right thing my hat is off to you.



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  3. OxDrover says:

    Dear Blogger,

    I totally agree with you about the it is a PEOPLE thing, NOT A GENDER thing, my only point is that I don’t care if it is a group of “Pedophiles to protect kids” getting up a group march to bring public attention to the fact that CHILDREN ARE DYING because of the COURT SYSTEM not putting the kid’s rights first!

    Sure I would rather have PARENTS MARCH rather than “Mothers” and who ever designed the march to coincide with “Mother’s day” may have done it just for the point that it was mother’s day so we’d have a “mother’s march”—-but if it made ONE PERSON aware that kids are DYING not because fathers/men are bad but because COURTS don’t take into consideration that KIDS HAVE RIGHTS TO SAFETY!

    The search for baby Gabriel Johnson is a mother’s abuse, with the father trying to care for the child, the Calyee Anthony case is a psychopathic mother who killed her child, you or I can list tit for tat father abuser and mother abuser, and I think it is probably if ALL kinds of abuse are taken into account, about 50/50, at least pretty close to those figures, so that both genders are equally guilty of abuse of children and spouses/signifricant-others/partners.

    Personally, I wish there was a way to distinguish the abuser from the non-abuser person, some way to “test” to be “sure”—just take an x-ray or a blood test and you could know the truth objectively. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy yet, maybe never will be, but I can wish any way.

    Thanks, Blogger! Your words are always wisdom! BTW I finally finished reading your blog and all your connections from start to finish. Boy there is a lot of information on there with all the stories from the news, the connections and your comments. Took me almost 2 years of reading to get it all. Sometimes just reading the news stories was a trigger….have to digest it in small bites sometimes, but very good stuff! THANKS for all that you do Blogger, to educate others about abuse and for sharing so much of yourself! You are TRULY a UNIQUE AND WONDERFUL INDIVIDUAL! ((((Hugs))))) and God Bless you!



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  4. BloggerT7165 says:

    Oxy,

    Thank you so very much for all your kind words. I very much appreciate the support you have shown to me and others.

    Annie and others,

    There is a great documentary called Dear Zachary: A letter to a son about his father. If you look at the site you can see that they are actually making some changes in the laws because of the work done by this documentary.

    Here is a statement from the filmaker:

    When my close friend Dr. Andrew Bagby (1973-2001) was murdered by his ex-girlfriend, Dr. Shirley Turner, I decided to make a film to memorialize him for family and friends. When I learned that Shirley Turner was pregnant with Andrew’s son, whom she later named Zachary, my project took on a whole new meaning. My mission became to make this film for Zachary, as a letter from all of Andrew’s loved ones to him, which he could one day view and get to know his father. When Shirley Turner killed again one year later in an unspeakable murder-suicide, my focus changed yet again. A second murder did not have to happen. From 2001 to 2003, Shirley Turner was an accused probable pre-meditated first degree murderer who had fled her home to avoid prosecution, and despite a pile of evidence that she was very likely a manipulative cold-blooded killer, the government of Canada allowed her to walk free on bail for a full year and a half, all the while having custody of a child. I found this situation beyond appalling – that an accused pre-meditated murderer could flee the United States, find refuge in Canada and hang out partying while my friend lay in ashes inside an urn. Mostly, I found it appalling that, knowing how potentially dangerous she was, she was given the opportunity to kill again. – http://www.dearzachary.com/

    There is home video’s, telephone calls, and more included in the documentary. This documentary is a great example of a person (in this case a mother) manipulating the system and worse. FYI – if you watch it make sure you watch it to the end as it takes about 12 minutes or more to get to the case stuff.



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  5. OxDrover says:

    Dear bloggerT,

    Just reading the film maker’s statement made me tear up! I share his anger and frustration at such a person being allowed to walk free, much less to have custody of a child and to kill again! It seems to me so many times that “murder” isn’t even a crime any more these days.

    I will try to down load the video but probably can’t do so as my internet connection is so slow (worse than dial up)

    It makes me so sad that children are exposed to this kind of person, without conscience, by a court system that surely doesn’t get it! Thanks Blogger!



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  6. OxDrover says:

    This is also the same crime as the book “Dance with the Devil” by David Bagby. I actually started to order the DVD movie, and then backed out at the last second, I just realized that while I am FURIOUS that this little boy (age 13 months) was murdered by his mother, after she had killed his father, and Canada allowed her loose on bail while she awaited shipment back to the US for trial, I also realized that watching this movie would break my heart, I think sometimes we need to just focus on the positive.

    The positive thing that this little boy Zachary in his short life accomplished is that Canada now has a law that will keep people like his mother in custody and allow loving family members to take care of the children instead of leaving them in harm’s way.

    It little enough that Zachary’s death was required to get Canada to act on what appears to be to be “good sense” in handling people who are accused of horrible crimes and bail.

    RIP Zachary. God bless you.



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