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This is bothering me, I think it's a real betrayal, what do you all think?

I wrote this comment to "why we protest" with the idea that my point about being a woman burned by what I think are the best activist attorneys we have is the most pressing reason as to why we protest. That reason is that we have got to stand together, even if our best hope, the activist attorneys will let us fall. Again, I repeat that women are the stakeholders, and as long as we, at the center of society are left behind, we all are left behind.
protester mom 01.Feb.2005 11:54


Hi all, I am a mom who protests, and being a mom causes me to protest. The main thing I want to say is that protesting is good. We get so many cheers from people walking by and driving by in their cars that are inspired and comforted by the very sight of us. That alone is good, plus the message that we constantly enforce to the police "Violence is not the answer," etc., will eventually get to them. TRUTH ENDURES, AND SO DO WE. Here is what William Blake has to say, and I think it applies to protesting and what's going on in the world right now:

"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.

A robin redbreast in a cage
Puts all heaven in a rage.

A dove-house fill'd with doves and pigeons
Shudders hell thro' all its regions.
A dog starv'd at his master's gate
Predicts the ruin of the state.
...

We are led to believe a lie
When we see not thro' the eye,
...
When the soul slept in beams of light..."

That protesting is good is my main point, but as a mom, I have something really sad and illustrative to drive it home with. I am upset about this because I know that mothers have great reason to protest--perhaps the most reason to protest (after all we are closest to and hold the stakes to society's most vulnerable, and "the future"), yet I find specific barriers from not only "without," as in too many time constraints put on us, but, most pressingly, I have found a sick barrier from within the movement.
This barrier is from the activist lawyers themselves, who are, you guessed it, men.
What happened is that I was recently and unexpectedly arrested at the N3 protest just for having my foot in the street, and a small crowd had gathered because my daughter was visably upset and not getting in the cop car. The police did not want to make a scene (a lot of credit for that goes to to the activist lawyers for enforcing that policy/ideal), so instead of hauling us off to jail like they would have if I had been a guy, they let us go early at Pioneer Square. We rejoined the protest, and the arresting seargent was mad, because he said "Why'd you have to come back again!", and whispered to three officers on three separate occasions, who each made eye contact with us, including the paddy wagon driver who leered menacingly at us for a long time.
My charges were dropped, because they knew they had no real charges on me anyway. However, WHAT THEY DID WAS TO CALL IN TO THE CHILD ABUSE HOTLINE THAT I WAS AN ABUSIVE PARENT FOR STAYING AT THE PROTEST UNTIL 10:00. I repeat: THEY CALLED IN TO THE CHILD ABUSE HOTLINE THAT I WAS AN ABUSIVE PARENT FOR STAYING AT THE PROTEST UNTIL 10:00. They promply started pepperspraying right after we left, too, and I had the last remaining child at the protest (kudos once again to the activist lawyers who enforced the respect the child policy/ideal).
So now I have child abuse people knocking on my door (litterally), and once someone has made an accusation like that, I am permanently in the hot seat, and though unresolvable, it will always remain on my record. This sucks, because I have specifically been fighting for my family's and specifically my daughter's welfare, ever since we were financially raped in open family court. As a true activist and mother, I have given from the heart on this. I don't even have a choice to turn back, as it would be wrong for me to not only let my daughter be raised in open financial/property violence from the courts and her father, but to leave it to her to deal with as a wife and mother, too. Thus, protesting is biologically tied to my chromosones....
AND, WHAT HAPPENED WHEN I ASKED THE ACTIVIST LAWYERS FOR HELP IN BEATING BACK THE LONG AND PARTICULARLY INVASIVE ARM OF THE GOVERNMENT--
"No, we only do criminal law."
As if it's not a crime for the police to initiate a false procedure designed to dangerously harm a protestor. What if the child abuse people did say that "Yes, staying at a protest until 10:00 means that you are a bad mom, and we are going to have to constantly monitor you and you are going to have to report to us, or we are going to have to take your child away."
What then, will the family court, that gives us only 1% of our maintainance money, sold our entire house illegally, gave the family car to my husband, along with our insurance, my daughter's college money, and 99.99% of my retirement money (in order to shut me up because I spoke up and openly declared financial rape)--do then with such an accusation by the police? They will try to take the one they couldn't take (because the could not touch my track record as a mom)--my child. My child. The whole reason why I protest.
I remember that night, when we were on 2nd, near Burnside, and the cops were trying to take people down, a woman said to me and my daughter: "Don't go over there, it's violent!" Me and my daughter simultaneously replied: "They need us!" without missing a beat and went to help them. I feel that everyone must do what is in their power, and although our power in this case stems from our vulnerability, the presence of numbers and women and children can cut down on police violence. So we did it. Unconditionally, as true protestors.
It's a sad day when the police go so far as to sic(sp?) the child abuse dogs on a protestor, and even more so for protestors to get burned by the activist lawyers who are the closest to fighting for principle instead of money.
When those lawyers fail a major stakeholder, what else have we got? This is why I protest, because we have nothing else. Everyone, please protest, and walk your talk in all circles!!!!!

add a comment on this article

lawyers 11.Feb.2005 14:22

catherine cstauffer@peoplepc.com

I spent 12 years in court with the OCA (more or less) and Im an activist. I know alot of the lawyers in town, and Im not going to defend them. However you did not specify which lawyers? the NLA? I ve heard many horror stories about lefty lawyers being insensitive when asked for help. Im sure gender is also an issue in what they prioritize. It can be really hard to find a lawyer. I had a hard time finding one myself even though I had a high profile case. WE need to organize our legal resources in portland outside of the NLG. The NLG is needed and please NLG don't be discouraged from what you do. Did you talk to the GDC? The GDC should be another step to help. Im am really sorry you are in this situation. Im also sorry that the intire process in dealing with the legal system is so fucking harsh. I have no problem sitting down with you and trying to figure out where you need to go to find resources. Or any other activist in trouble for that matter.

A possible idea... 11.Feb.2005 16:24

Emma Reed

I will just throw this out here. What would a major youth march (plus parents, guardians,friends, advocates, etc.) look like? What if we could have a Mother Jones-type action where everyone brought children and eachother to march downtown to protest the "No Child Left Behind" Act, gov't education buget cuts, cuts in social services and medical services, the environmental damage the next gen is inheriting, the wars they are inheriting, the corporations that are trying to target them, plus the privatization of their world? I would like to see this happening very soon because I am tired of not bringing my kids to permitted or non-permitted marches because of the potential of cop violence or CPS violence and hassling. Maybe if there were enough people under 18 marching (and those of us in solidarity with them) it would l decrease the threat of being singled out and abused. What about any youth collectives out there, what do you all think? It seems like it is time for some of us to show support for youth issues and have those be the main focus of a outlying area to downtown march. If anyone is completely against all of this, fine, but there is absolutely no reason to pick me apart IMC style, it's just an idea.

bringing a kid is abusive 11.Feb.2005 18:14

nobody

What logic is applied to the idea that having your kid at your side abusive? Would it not be worse to leave you child at home unattended? Teaching them direct democracy should be a requirement of parenthood. Geeze! What a government we have created for ourselves. The very leftist institutions that we have created, child protective services being not a right wing effort I assume, are turned against us and used as a law enforcment stand in to squash us. Man or woman would have probably made no differnece in your particular case though. The cops would have probably done the same thing to a man.

protester mom 11.Feb.2005 18:36

...

Hi Catherine, your comment was appreciated. I am really upset by how my simple act of being a mother has led up to all of this, and I know that if people understood what hell can be unleashed when someone is just trying to be a mom, then they would be outraged. I just read a book about rape, and in it was a story about a woman who was gang raped, and then got no help from the police and the doctor...then went home with the knowledge with having come from a place of being left for dead, could not rely on the police or the (male) doctors to help even when they were paid to help. The book described this as being raped, re-raped, and raped again.
Rape is an act of intercourse that uses sex as the medium. The primary act is to violate the entire person, it is an act of violence. Every time a person buys, trades, or barters with someone, they have financial intercourse. To do this without the person's consent, under the premise of being an official transaction, is financial rape. Rape is one of the most heinous crimes there is. That is what the family law system does to women and childen. The family law system takes money from women and children and gives it to men. For anyone out there that says that the money was never ours in the first place, then you just said that all along, I and every other wife and mother out there are a private prostitute, concubine, maid, wet-nurse, accountant, and COE. If you're saying that 99% of my income, etc. is not stolen, then you are saying that I am a prostitute, etc.
Anyway, I openly declared financial rape in court. Keep in mind that financial sanctions were used to kill 500,000 Iraqi children for 12 years before we invaded them, and that the words "economics" and "sociology" are interchangeable, and that slavery is also known as social death, and you will understand that the only thing that comes after this type of treatment is all-out physical violence. Women and children are held in this state because mothers naturally care for their children and will avoid all out physical violence. In California, I had about five cops WAITING FOR ME AND MY CHILD at my door, for only saying that I was going to enter MY OWN HOME, where I lived. The courts themselves bluffed charging me with CONTEMPT, just for not bowing down--and then, as in my above cited arrest, dropped the charges because there was no basis, and if charged, I would have had the chance at a jury trial of my peers. And for merely accompanying my child on her "visits" with her rapist father (which had never been done before and really threw them for a loop), the courts threatened to have the police oversee the "exchange" of my daughter from me to her father. There have been women who have left batterers, who quit stalking them because the courts stalked the women for them. It's no fucking wonder that so many families are "managed" this way and gone with this loss of essential freedom is also our political power.
So as extreme as it sounds--yet no one has every argued with it--me and my daughter have been raped by my husband/her father, and then raped again, in a permanent action, by the courts/government that are designed to protect us. And now that my attempts within the system have lead to a void, I have taken my fight to the streets, only to be dissed once again by what so far seems to be our best activist attorneys. They fucking turned their backs on me when I did "less" than the rest of the protesters and got "more" with this insidious and underhanded attack.
Incidentally, I outdid the Stanford professor and world renowned "founding father" of problem solving, George Polya, in a math problem (true story, and I have already proved it), and was STILL not able to make the appeals process function, and these are unprecedented times of war--my best chance at finding attorneys who would understand--so this makes this dismissal by those attorneys even more heavy.
I really don't want to name names, because they are doing fantastic work for male protesters and women protesters who have the luxury of going to jail, but they are from the Belmont Law Center. They probably don't understand but they are wrong anyway and they should know better. I hate what they have done to me and all women and children, but I still like the fact that they are standing up for other protesters.
Rememember everyone, that it was one black WOMAN who was the only senator (or whatever) that stood up against approving the Iraqi war, and it was a WOMAN who stood up against the recent election fraud. I think that's pretty impressive for being such tiny "minorities." And we all know that women are the ones who are there for the children when their fathers (and the courts) decide that they have no family responsibilites anymore--in short, we are the only thing that is keeping this country together, and we are the only ones that can be depended upon to save it. Even Abraham Lincoln, who finally emancipated African Americans, said something like "Everything I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother." And George Washington said something similar. As far as I'm concerned, everyone that feels like they can disrespect us can establish your own colony/world somewhere and help all your other protesters until you all go extinct, and leave the rest of us to carry on.
Then I will feel safe. I am all about being in solidarity, but it seems solidarity is impossible with men.
I will email you soon, Catherine.

Dear Protesting Mom 11.Feb.2005 19:50

Ben

It's weird. I believe I was arrested with you, at the same time. The cops were extremely picky that day, and I still cannot get it removed from my criminal record. Was it you that had to wait a long time in the police car because the police didn't know if they should just leave your kid out their. Well if it was I can definantly relate to everything you just said. I definantly support the idea of the commentor who wanted a protest with kids my age and younger and mothers like you. If you need me, I will support you in court. If you were that person that was arrested near me, I will try as hard as I can to get you out of this situation. I was arrested for standing on the curb too, but you are in much of a more sticky situation then I am. Get your voice out and your childs voice to. Just remember, police are rutheless, if things get violent, your child comes first. I don't say that to disagree with anyone taking their children to protests, I'm just saying do things in your childs favor. I really hope on may day (May 19th) I can visit you and stick up for your childs rights, and your rights, agaisnt police. That was a stupid thing they did to you, I hope things get better.

this hurts..... 11.Feb.2005 20:15

male 345

Granted, patriarchy is a heavy burden on women (men as well to a lesser degree)
but can we try not to paint ALL men as being inherant oppressors. It's obvious
that males are responsible for most of the bull that goes on in the world, but
is there no room for a definition of what it is to be a "good man".

Is it the general opinion of the radical left that men are evil by nature and beyond
redemption or it there such thing as a "liberated man"?

Belmont law center... 11.Feb.2005 20:50

PDXactive

In Paul and Stu's defense they ARE criminal attorneys. They don't do family
law and would be little help. Just becasue someone is a lawyer, doesn't mean
they are effective in ALL aspects of law. They could have given you references
however. At any rate, the BLC is closing and may not be able to help us much
more at all.

dear male 345 11.Feb.2005 21:41

...

I for one, can tell you that I didn't want to write this article. I feel yucky about it. I generally just want to be an activist. But sometimes activists need to be defended, and this was something I didn't plan. And because of the very fact that I was burned so severely and then burned again under the best case scenario, I figured that that was historic on some scale, a measure of how pervasive this stuff is, and "newsworthy" at least in a purely empirical sense.
I would love to do anything else in the world than to struggle, but I have a kid, and in light of all the crap that is coming down the pipe at our children, I just couldn't live with myself if I was silent about our social structure, the family, which underpins EVERYTHING. We are destroying everything that's good by sick social relations, and we will save it by good social relations. If I cared at all about any of the myraid stuff happening, the very least I can do is to speak on the internal structure that everything else rests upon. This was MINIMAL.
But I also am having trouble with just the fact of being burned so coldly by people who I thought were "my friends." Every day, men open doors for me, and go out of their way for me in ways that they wouldn't if I was a man. They do this without gain. But it just kills me that something as subversive extreme as the police sending the child abuse freaks to my door and my own activist attorneys leave me AND my daughter alone to deal with it. Maybe you just have to be there and to do the math to understand what it feels like. It's worse than Bush taking the white house, the original reason why I was at the protest. I was so upset by this as I published the article that I was shaking.
It's ironic too, that at the J20 protest, the officer that arrested me pushed me and my daughter (yes, this really happened) us into the crowd with his riot stick. His name was Miller. I realized he was who he was after I had told them that violence was not the answer. Maybe he was the one who called me in to the child abuse people, and maybe he will learn by his own hippocracy. Does anyone know anything about "Miller," and what kind of record he has?
But I do know there are good men out there, and we all do. I would name Martin Luther King, Ghandi, Thomas Jefferson, and Socrates, and there are people I know here locally that are fantastic. But it doesn't change the fact that women are vary capable of, and want to shine, too; and the fact that men mean well, but when it comes down to it, the fact is that as a group, they use their advantages against us.

Hi Ben 11.Feb.2005 21:44

...

Were you arrested right at the outset on Burnside and 6th? Were you the one who said you were arrested for jaywalking? If you were, you were the reason why I was arrested, and I wouldn't change a thing about it. Even if you weren't that one, "I still love ya."
Me and my daughter had just made it to the protest, and I saw someone was already arrested. Because it was right after the election, and it was obvious that all of our efforts over the last four years were rubbed in our faces, I figured that this was a time for unity, including the police on the streets. I don't want an us verses them world. And I figured that the police were never going to learn to get along with anyone exept by learning from the peacemakers. Because of that person who was arrested for jaywalking, I told them very calmly and directly "You are supposed to be here for us, not against us." This inspired much "discussion" from them, and they basically wanted to arrest me. I held my ground, because there was nothing else I could do. They told me that I needed to get my foot out of the street (I only put it there to come down to their level and to look for a pad and paper in my backpack to record their riduculous statements), because it was "dangerous" in the street. They were the only ones in the street, and I calmly said they were there to protect me. I don't know if that was some trigger or what, but that's when they arrested me. But that original protester is what inspired it all.
Yes, my daughter was upset and not getting in the car. Yes, that lasted for some time, and I think it pissed them off, which is probably why they went out of their way to "get back at us." But like I have said before, if they were frustrated, it's because they couldn't just violently throw my daughter in the car due to public scrutiny--and they know they can't do that because of the activists and the activist lawyers. And like I said, they peppersprayed within five minutes of us leaving, which gives tremendous credit to the activist lawyers who came to the defence of the children who were peppersprayed.
The police won't give me a fair chance to defend myself (with an activist lawyer) in court, so you can't help me in court. They would lose and they know it, so they are cowardly (and sick) and have done this child abuse thing instead.
I did want to unify this country that day. As it turned out, I was an instant hero at my daughter's school in SW Portland, one of the more "republican" neighborhoods, and those kids don't even know me. My daughter is at an age where boys hate girls and vice versa, and my she is a strong animal rights activist who is at odds with kids who go on hunting trips. Even her "worst case," a boy who goes hunting and who dislikes her reciprocally--was on my side...I feel like some unifying happened there.
Ben, if that was you getting arrested before me, that is really wierd like you said. Even if it wasn't I'm okay with that. I have recently noticed stuff you have written, and I think you have a really good way of looking at things. I look forward to meeting you at a protest sometime, and I appreciate your support.

Re the BLC 11.Feb.2005 21:50

activist

That is a shame that the BLC is closing. We all need all the help we can get.
But I'm guessing that these lawyers have chosen this area of law because they thought it would be the most helpful. That means they didn't think about the women who would be left behind, like in this case.

Wow, didn't see that one coming 11.Feb.2005 22:30

Ben

A lot has happened since that night on November third. I became mad at our police system for arresting me. I looked for support and I found Indymedia. I have grown to be an activist and wouldn't change the day I was arrested if I had the chance.

This was an incredibly one out of a million chance sort of thing. Yes, I was the person that was arrested for standing next to the barricade as many others were. When you were asking for information from me the police arrested you, I overheard them saying that they arrested you for "asking to many questions." One police officer, an actual nice cop, pleaded with the leiutenant to let you go to help take care of your daughter. Leiutenant Dick (that was his first name, I do not know anything else about him other than the fact that he verbally and physically abused me and arrested me) denied the police mans request saying, "No, we have to set an example." Or something along the lines of that. I witnessed the arrest and saw the way it was dealt with. I will defend you in court, and try to get this removed from yours and possibly my record. I will also request that this leiutenant dick be fired. Reviewing my arrest, I can record many acts of police brutality. This police officer is a horrible man who needs to be fired. If you need a lawyer I can help you with that too. If you want to win the fight over these horrible actions, set up a court date. If not getting a lawyer is your problem I can most definantly assist you with that and for free. Although this may sound dumb, my father is an extremely succesful lawyer. He has told me that he would defend me in court against the police. He is a man of his word and will do everything in his power to help me. Both of our arrests were related so he will most definantly defend you. This, of course, is free of charge. So all you have to do is want to go through with this. I, however, do not know if my criminal record will be erased, but I do know that your case will be the first priority. Comment back if you want to go through with this.

slandering others not appropriate 11.Feb.2005 22:57

voice of reason

With respect, you're not being fair to local "activist attorneys."

1. They do not have a duty to help you.

No lawyer, "activist" or not, can be forced to accept you as a client. They may have had good reasons for turning you away -- not knowing this area of the law very well, a full caseload already, personal reasons, etc.

2. You're being passive-aggressive, not reasonable or rational.

As we all know, there are only a handful of "activist attorneys" in town. You note indirectly that you're grateful to the police accountability lawsuit brought by a legal team we all know was headed by Alan Graf. Then although you "really don't want to name names," in a comment you not-so-subtly drop the name of the Belmont Law Center--which we all know consists of Paul Loney and Stu Sugarman.

Why is the above relevant? Because Graf practices Social Security law as his main practice, and uses proceeds from that to hand-pick civil rights cases to fight, with police accountability being a major theme. Loney and Sugarman do a lot of criminal work, but also a smattering of other things, such as environmental law. None of them practice ANY family law, as least as far as I know. Calling the government's actions "a crime" does not mean that you will find a remedy in criminal court! Your case is squarely in family law--apparently DHS is investigating you for abuse.

3. You're not giving the lawyers a fair chance to tell their side of the story.

Anyone who has ever dealt with a lawyer has probably heard about attorney-client privilege. It means that secrets and confidences you tell your lawyer don't leave the lawyer's head, or at least her file cabinet or computer. None of the lawyers you've approached can tell us their side of the story without violating this attorney-client privilege. If they do tell us and violate this privilege, the bar will discipline them, with penalties ranging up to permanent disbarment. So we can't hear the other side of the story.

4. Not all "activist lawyers" in this town are men.

I'm not a lawyer and certainly don't know everyone in town, but there is at least one woman who practices family law in town who is a member of the NLG (if that's what qualifies you as an "activist lawyer")--Theresa Wright of the Lewis & Clark Legal Clinic (located downtown). You can get her contact info at  http://www.osbar.org/members/start.asp , the online bar directory.

If you are still in need of an attorney you can call the Oregon State Bar and ask for their lawyer referral service. They can give you contact info for lawyers who practice family law in your area.




I don't see this article as anything but you venting some steam. This might be good for you, but passively-aggressively slandering the reputations of others, especially in a manner and forum where you know you can't be challenged, is inappropriate at best.

would like to talk to ben and other comments 11.Feb.2005 23:25

catherine

Ben, if you are interested in helping activists that get arrested please email me. I would like to talk to you anyway because I was doing jail support when you got arrested---------------------On another note I want to express my sympathy for protester mom again. Anyone who has been arrested or harrassed and then faced the legal system on top of that is going to understand the rape metaphor. On top of all of that Lawyers often are rude and can't relate to how vulnerable people are when they need help. It would be very nice if we pooled the info about what happens with your case to help others. I would like to have contact info from you so you can talk to other woman when this happens to them. I remember the night of the incident you were involved in and was doing jail support trying to track what happened with you and your daughter. The police told me they had your daughter in protective custody which means they call a responsible adult of your choosing to pick her up. I was concerned, but as I recall we had no way to contact you directly. Once again Im sorry that you feel betrayed, and facing the situation and system that you are...It is very understandable.

regarding "Officer Miller" 12.Feb.2005 00:51

a neighbor

though you didn't give his first name, we rather suspect he is the same cop that's our nearby
neighbor, and he does NOT enjoy a good reputation in the neighborhood when it comes to his own
children. We've suspected child abuse "issues" run deep with this man & are common occurance
at his household...yet we're unable to prove anything or abled to inspire anyone else to check
on it due to the proverbial BLUE WALL that somehow protects these people.

As neighbor's, we've collectively decided to watch carefully and keep our cameras handy so as
to catch "anything" on film that is questionable ((there have been incidents in the past that
had we taken pics, then who knows who'd have then gotten involved?)) and be less friendly to
him and more so to his children. The poor wife is a total "zero" most of the time anyway!

It's ironic that the same cop is involved with your "issue" and though you didn't tell his 1st
name, I nonetheless wouldn't be at all surprised that it same dude that's our neigbor...a bad
man that shouldn't be wearing a badge or carrying a gun in our opinion. But...as long as they
kiss each other's asses and protect each other...what are we to do?

this is protester mom, and this whole story has so many other stories 13.Feb.2005 16:30

it's just plain wierd

First of all, voice of reason, this is not about venting at all. I didn't want to "come out" with this stuff because like I said, I wanted to move on and be an activist. But sometimes we need our lawyers, that cannot be denied. I thought this story should be told because like everyone says, the women and children need to be out there at the protests, and if we were, then maybe so many guys would not get arrested. We pretty much all know that. So therefore, the women and children need legal support for their legal situations, which are different from an activist in his or her 20's, say, that doesn't have any kids and can afford the luxury of going to jail. In my case, the police let me go early due to trying to escape negative public scrutiny over their treatment of children (again, thanks to the activist attornys who have helped establish this policy), but BECAUSE TAKING US TO JAIL WASN'T APPROPRIATE, THEY COULDN'T LET IT REST, AND WENT OUT OF THEIR WAY TO CALL THE CHILD ABUSE PEOPLE. I'm saying that this is an attack on a woman and child, for being a woman and child, and doesn't allow a "trial", which is a WORSE attack on a protester than the typical arrest for jaywalking, and THEREFORE warrents a greater defense. Who knows, maybe I will get a law passed someday that will wipe out a lot of our problems, and maybe my child will be president--no one can say that this won't happen and that we can afford to lose individuals. If you're serious about protesting, you would have noticed that it was a lone BLACK WOMAN who didn't rubber-stamp the Iraqi war, and it was a WOMAN who stood up against the election fraud. If you're serious, you can do the math on that and see that women are proven to be our best bet in saving the world. I for one am not playing around. And unless we as a group have decided that women and children are not part of taking back this country, then leaving women and children to deal with this subversive crap by themselves is not okay.
Plus, if this could happen to me and my daughter, then it could happen to any mother and child protester. I think that is HUGE, and we're all idiots and fools to underestimate it. Also, if we let them get away with it this time, then they have more practice at it, others within the force are then conditioned to it, and the ones who committed it are emboldened.
I think practically all attorneys, activist or not, spend too much time on what happens "after the fact," and don't get to the root cause of things--in other words, if they took a case like mine--I think it would go MILES toward PREVENTION of other problems.
This has nothing to do with family law. It is about police harrassment. The family law stuff was cited because the police are so freaking RECKLESS AND BRUTAL, that they would launch this attack, which could result in my child being taken away, which, after what has already been lifted from me in family law represents a complete total loss of any sense of humanity for mothers.
I don't see why the Belmont Law Center can't print a response on indymedia if they wanted to. I do not want to attack them, I think they are good people, but this issue has to be brought to light. And like I said, I didn't want to write it. I can understand you being a little hurt by the whole thing, but really, no one is being attacked--an issue is being dealt with, that hopefully will be improved. If there was a way for me to not cite the Belmont Law Center, then I would have. But people need to know that our heroes are stabbing us in the back.
Graf is not related to this. I, though I don't know that much about the activist attorneys, named the Belmont Law Center as being the best activist attorneys in town, because from what I can see, they are the ones who go for injunctions as opposed to money, which to me is "justice," and is the whole point of legal action. I don't know where they're at with legal "skills," but as far as I'm concerned, if a person't heart is in the right place, and they walk their talk, then that's all that matters. I think that if they have the right idea, they will get there. And that's why I was calling them the best activist attorneys. But it doesn't mean that all their good intentions didn't stop when it came to women and children, and that by leaving us to suffer this on our own, that they aren't committed to fending off the unfair police attacks as much as they would like us to believe.
Catherine, I AM going to email you! You were not only the first to respond to this article, but you were also real about it. I also need to do follow-up on who knew what about my arrest, so that I can defend myself. The police lied to you when they said my daughter was in protective custody and that they were calling someone for me. I was trying to avoid all contact between them and her, and I had called my friend in advance. My friend didn't know what to do and told my daughter to get in the cop car. I only have ten more minutes on this computer, but maybe you, me, and Ben can get together. I would really like that.
Ben, you are the man. Can you email Catherine, then we can all three be in contact? I don't want to put my email address on the net. That is amazing about your dad. I was the one who made the comment about Alexander the Mouse in your article about ageism.
A neighbor---is Miller kind of medium built, with blondish hair and blue eyes? This was the one who arrested me and later at the J20 protest was pushing both me and her into the crowd with his stick when there was no where to go. I have no idea if he was the one who called in this child abuse thing, but it may have been him since he did the arrest. If he is a child abuser, then this is CRAZY. But this kind of stuff happens with our popo.
Ben, when you said it was you who got arrested with me, the first thing I thought was that this is a story that my daughter will tell her grandchildren. You're right, that is a one in a million thing!

What you can do about police abuse 13.Feb.2005 17:39

unbridled

Here are some general resources for people dealing with police misconduct:

www.policeabuse.org (an independent cop organization that uses a variety of methods to catch abusive cops on tape and then rein them in or have them fired)

Copwatch gives various ideas (copwatch is a non-cop organization): copwatch.com/AAAindex.html

www.cryoflove.org (good for homeless people dealing with police brutality, may offer advice/direction for general issues as well)

I was especially moved by your words on how child abuse hotlines can be used to attack protesters. Indy media should do an investigative report of this! Well, I guess, that means y'all. Keep a record of the incidents, keep speaking up about this, and see if you can organize other parents who've had to deal with this. I know of only one organization made up of 'victims of child abuse laws': VOCAL (means 'victims of child abuse laws'). Apparently they have chapters in various places in the u.s.a. and i heard they have a phone number in Denver, CO, so you might want to pursue this, if just to get some ideas about what you might do and what has been done.

Good luck!

to unbridled 14.Feb.2005 18:09

protester mom

Hi unbridled...
I just wanted to say thanks for all the websites you gave. I have looked at one already (www.cryoflove.org), and will look up the other two soon. I appreciate you taking the time to get these sites, and I also appreciate you understanding how subversive the police really are.

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