Nice guy kills girlfriend

I see nothing much has changed while I was away.

The latest case in the national news involves Jovan Belcher, a linebacker with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Police report shows new details in Jovan-Belcher murder suicide

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/police-report-shows-details-jovan-belcher-murder-suicide-152440857–nfl.html

So, the reason for this fatal domestic violence incident, according to this article:

  • couple had been arguing for months
  • he was angry she was out late
  • she reportedly did not talk to him as he thought she should

Honestly, I can’t recall seeing “arguing” as a cause of domestic violence, have you? Or the manner in which a person speaks to another.

He’s painted with a lot of sympathy in this article – he only “reportedly” partied (in quotation marks in the article); he says he’s sorry to his girlfriend (sorry for killing her); his mother and coach are involved; he tells the coach how he wants his children to be taken care of (do killers have that right?)

The victim, on the otherhand, is a mother who went to a concert, had a few drinks, argued with her boyfriend, and spoke in a manner he didn’t like.

Hmmm.

 

Nice dad kills son

ANOTHER nice dad kills his son. Why? (Supposedly) Because his marriage broke up. (Why are women leaving these gems?) I have 3 words for these guys: SUCK IT UP.

 

 

A LITTLE boy thrown to his death from a bridge had tried to comfort his dad after his mother left them.

Friends and neighbours said a marriage break-up probably caused the murder-suicide of Jason Lees, 40, and his toddler Brad.

A neighbour yesterday recounted the heartwrenching day when two-year-old Brad hugged his weeping dad on the back stairs of their Brisbane home.

Marlene Stephens, who lives next door, said she thought Mr Lees’ wife Danielle was no longer living with them when he made the fateful decision to kill his son and take his own life.

“She left him a while back and you could hear and see him crying on the back stairs,” she said.

“I remember the little boy came down and wrapped his arms around him – I’m always going to remember that image.”

Ms Stephens said Brad always gave her a wave.

“It was always so lovely to hear them laugh. He was a beautiful kid,” she said.

Mr Lees, a much-admired teacher at a top private school in Brisbane, rode his bike on to Story Bridge about 2.30am on Monday and jumped to his death with Brad.

His wife, a psychologist from the Gold Coast, could not be contacted yesterday.

The couple met after Mr Lees moved from Canada about 15 years ago.

Bill Lees told the Ottawa Sun he met his baby nephew when his brother and his family visited Canada in 2010 so Jason could referee an international rugby sevens match. “That was the last time I saw them,” he said.

Rugby friends say they used to see Danielle at matches quite often, but hadn’t seen her much in the past year.

He loved his little son – he was the apple of his eye,” one friend said.

A parent said on Facebook that Mr Lees taught her son.

Why can I only feel deep sadness for his pain instead of condemning him for what he has done to himself and Brad?” she wrote.

– with Kate Kyriacou and Rose Brennan

Female murder-suicide case

Okay, I don’t see a ‘nice woman kills family’ template like is typical with the “nice guy kills ex/wife/family.” But, like with male perps, they have not identified this woman’s relationship to the baby – nor have they mentioned the other victims in the headline:

Neighbor saw woman shoot at baby

 

Authorities have said five people, including two children and a baby, were killed in a murder-suicide, but they haven’t identified the shooter. The bodies were found Friday in Emington, a small farming community about 80 miles southwest of Chicago.

What drives a father to kill?

Does this sound like the guy is trying to rationalize a father’s violence or be sympathetic to it? Kinda creepy.

What drives a father to kill?

The typical profile of a family annihilator is a middle-aged man, a good provider who appears dedicated, devoted and loyal to his family. However, he is usually quite socially isolated, with few friends and with profound feelings of frustration and inadequacy. The tipping point is some catastrophic loss or impending tragedy that threatens to undermine his sense of self and amplifies his feelings of impotence and powerlessness. In individuals for whom their family is an integral part of their identity – part of themselves, rather than a separate being – murdering the family is akin to a single act of suicide. It is a way of regaining control; of obliterating the impending crisis. This explains why men will often not only kill their partner and children, but also pets and destroy their property by setting fires. It is an eradication of everything that constitutes the self.

In addition to this, they are often motivated by bitterness and anger and a desire to punish the spouse; while killing the partner is an act of revenge, killing the children is an act of love as he believes he – and therefore they – will be better off dead than face the imminent loss of power.

While this points to severe psychological problems with underlying personality issues and maladaptive coping strategies, this, in itself, does not necessarily constitute a mental illness. However, professionals are divided as to whether these men can be held truly culpable for their actions. For the few that survive, jurors tend to find them responsible for their actions and therefore guilty of murder, but some end up detained in secure psychiatric hospitals indefinitely.

Experts, such as Jack Levin, Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts who has studied family annihilators, have argued that they typically do know right from wrong and points to the fact that they are well planned and selective and that if a friend came along, the father wouldn’t kill him or her – instead, he kills his children to get even with his wife because he blames her and hates her.

Others, such as Tony Black, former chief psychologist at Broadmoor, are more circumspect. Black has argued that for anyone to commit such a heinous crime, there must be something fundamentally wrong with them and it is unhelpful just to simply think of them as ‘bad’. But what can be done to prevent such atrocities? Is there the possibility of intervention before such murders take place or ways to identify at risk men?

Scott Mackenzie, a consultant forensic psychiatrist in Essex who has assessed family annihilators for the criminal justice system, feels that often there are underlying anti-social personality traits and fundamental issues with rage and anger management. But these psychological traits are not uncommon in the population, and most will never go on to murder their family. ‘Those who act are often angry and resentful individuals. There is often a prior pattern of domestic abuse. But predicting with any reliability who will suddenly flip and resort to this kind of behaviour is incredibly difficult, if not near impossible. After any such incident there are inevitably questions asked if anything could be done, if someone could have intervened or spotted the signs. Tragically, in most cases, the answer is no.’

Wrong answer! Here is how we prevent it:

  • Look for the red flags (anger, resentment, abuse, control, coercion)
  • Take threats seriously
  • Believe women when they express fear
  • Do NOT provide leniency in domestic violence
  • Treat domestic violence like other crimes
  • Educate society on domestic violence (myths vs. reality)
  • Don’t be silent about abuse – it can lead to shame, victim blaming, tolerance for this crime
  • Change how the media present stories – the “nice guy”‘ murders wife – does not provide the context to understand DV
  • Change the culture – violence against women is not inevitable

 

“Nice dad” kills daughter

Okay, you know those “nice guy” kills wife stories – well, they also apply to children. In this article, the paternal grandfather says what a great guy his son was and blames the deaths on the family court system. I understand that the perpetrator was his son, but when are people going to take accountability for their actions? Killing your 2-year-old daughter does not, can not change family court. And, saying it does to the media – well, why not just tell dads to keep killing their kids?

Slain girl’s grandfather says court system pushed his son over the edge

Here’s another side to this sympathetic story – the ex-wife feared him and separated from him while pregnant

Family: Custody issue central in dad-daughter death Mother feared for her child’s safety

Court records, reviewed by KCRA, also reveal that the mother had grave concerns  about her daughter when she was not returned from a court appointed visit with  her father. Those records also confirm that a judge had previously ordered the  father to undergo anger management counseling.

“I believe (Mourad Samaan) is out of control and our daughter is in  imminent danger in his custody,” read a court document filed August 8, 2011.

The mother also asked a judge to deny Mourad Samaan further visitation  rights until a hearing on August 30, court records show.

Read more: http://www.kcra.com/news/28871771/detail.html#ixzz1VFJSbKHv

Another family court decision that resulted in death. Is the system broken, as the grandfather says? It sures is when it hands over innocent children to adults with anger issues, against the wishes of a frightened mother, and ends with the murder of children.

Father absent headlines, or my father the gunman

If this were a mother, the term “mother” or “mom” would be in every headline (and would have made national news).

In this case, a husband/father killed 6 people – his wife and her family – and injured 4 – at their son’s birthday party. Some of the articles blame the woman for not divorcing him or filing a restraining order – but, really, folks, a divorce would not have saved her – this is what angered him (and, indeed research indicates separation and divorce are the height of danger for a woman). And, a restraining order? Maybe – if it was enforced by the police.

Another activist brought this page to our attention. Notice out of the 21 articles, only  ONE  refer to him as a husband. Six refer to him simply as a “gunman.” Really? The “gunman” was the father of the little boy celebrating his birthday – and then – witnessing his father kill his mother, her family, and then the “gunman” killed himself.

Gunman =6

Man =1

Husband =1

Father/dad =0

No mention of his relationship to the victims at all =13

Google search

Here are the first three:

Grand Prairie shooting victims leave behind families, dreams

Dallas
Morning News (subscription) – ‎19 hours
ago‎
By From staff reports Trini Do worked two jobs and taught
Sunday school, as well as caring for her two children, friends said. She worked
full time doing accounting and grant management at the University of Texas at
Arlington, where she earned a

Police Believe Gunman Planned Roller Rink
Shootings

NBC
Dallas-Fort Worth – Amanda
Guerra
– ‎40 minutes ago‎
Grand Prairie police said the 35-year-old man who shot and
killed five people at Roller World in Grand Prairie planned his attack. Police
say investigators believe the deadly weekend attack at a Grand Prairie
roller-skating rink was

Family in Shock after Birthday Party
Shooting Rampage

FOX 4
News – Tracy
DeLatte
– ‎2 hours ago‎
GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas – The wounded who survived the shooting
rampage at a Grand Prairie skating rink are sharing their eyewitness accounts of
what happened. Hoi Ta and his family moved to North Texas from Vietnam nearly
two decades ago in search of a

Custody disputes tough on women (but media fails to tell story)

Women’s E-News has written about this topic in the past – it’s the mainstream media outlets that ignore it:

Custody disputes now tougher for battered moms

However, certain injustices (crimes, really) that I first began tracking in the late 1970s have now gotten much worse. For example, battered women are losing custody to their batterers in record numbers. Children are being successfully brainwashed by fathers, but many mothers are being falsely accused of brainwashing. Worse: Children with mandated reporters–physicians, nurses or teachers–who report to them that they have been sexually abused by their fathers are usually given to those very fathers. The mothers of these children are almost always viewed as having “coached” or “alienated” the children and, on this basis alone, are seen as “unfit” mothers.

It’s even tough in Taiwan:

Judges in custody cases urged to think of children’s needs 

…It found that serious problems can arise when women are fighting for custody of their children.

In court, judges prefer not to change the status quo in the family. If the father takes the child away from the mother before or after the parents separate, for example, the judge will usually grant custody to the father, for fear that the child will have difficulty adjusting to a new lifestyle, she said.

Should the mother ask for a retrial, the case is heard in the same court and very often the judges still award custody to the father, Chi said.

Last year, judges ruled 61 percent of child custody disputes in favor of the father, she said.

“The judges are supposed to make their decisions based on the best interests of the child, but what we are seeing is totally different,” Chi said.

This is what can happen to women in a custody dispute (even w/o previous violence in the relationship) – it’s not happening to men on the same scale – yet the media is picking up on men’s stories in divorce & custody. Some articles don’t mention who has custody or where the biological mother is when the child(ren) is in the care of the custodial Dad.

Friends mourn teens killed in Chula Vista suicide 

A family friend told 10News the former attorney and life coach was having financial problems and was at risk of losing his home and full custody of the boys. He and his wife, Maria, filed for divorce in 2007.

He had full custody of two boys ages 13 and 15 – and he killed them both and them committed suicide (the 3rd murder-suicide this month in this area).

Round up of family court cases, new policies

(The following articles come from several sources, including the folks behind sites like Parenting News Network, Dastardly Dads, Justice Posterous…)

Does access trump safety?

Boise man, child who died in
murder-suicide Thursday identified

http://www.idahostatesman.com/2011/05/20/1656600/boise-man-child-who-died-in-murder.html

Court records indicate Davis and Natasha’s mother were not
married. There was a legal battle over the girl’s custody which was resolved in
2009, according to Ada County court records.

Initially,
Davis said the girl’s mother refused to let him have access to Natasha
following her birth but a visitation schedule was worked out once lawyers were
hired, the documents say.

Davis sued for joint custody and was granted in April 2009,
according to the records, but a 50/50 split was not to occur until 2013. Until
then, Davis had custody certain days of the week.

Read more: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2011/05/20/1656600/boise-man-child-who-died-in-murder.html#ixzz1N8EqLkd7

Custody battle erupts in gunfire

http://citizensvoice.com/news/custody-battle-erupts-in-gunfire-1.1150096#axzz1N2q4PoFu

In a flurry of gunfire, police said Cooper fatally shot a mother of three and wounded two men before
turning the gun on himself
. His ex-girlfriend and target, Shaundra Langille, 28, survived the shooting rampage by hiding in a closet with the couple’s 9-month-old  daughter and another child, authorities said.

Police  arrived at the chaotic murder-suicide scene around 3:20 p.m. to find Shana Bagley’s body outside the
front door of Apartment 413 in the Hanover Village Apartments, dead on her 25th  birthday.

Read
more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/custody-battle-erupts-in-gunfire-1.1150096#ixzz1N89HDFo4

Family denies custody battle caused deaths

http://news.ninemsn.com.au/national/8251950/grieving-family-denies-custody-dispute

“Both  parents had access to the children and there was no custody battle,” the family said in a statement.

I have an article posted on the  blog that also states access is not a factor when fathers kill (meaning they
don’t kill because they don’t have access, which is what many fathers rights  groups claim) – rather, vengeance often plays a role (and ironically, women are  stereotyped – esp. in family court –as being vengeful).

Records: Barbone admitted to hitting baby; autopsy results in

Neighbors  devastated by murder charge

http://www.localnews8.com/news/27931821/detail.html

The records said that Barbone tried  to quiet his son down when he started crying at 1:30 a.m. Monday. Barbone
changed his diaper and tried to get the baby to fall asleep with him on a  couch. Barbone allegedly admitted to the reporting officer that when the boy would  not quiet down, he struck the baby on  the back of the head with his fist and then elbowed him in the head, according to the records.

When Barbone realized the child was  unresponsive he took him to Portneuf Medical Center from the home he was
staying at on La Montagna Strada, which is less than a mile away from the  hospital. This happened around 7 a.m., according to the records.

Doctors worked to save the infant  for 30 minutes before declaring him dead. They said the infant was most likely
dead before he arrived at the hospital, according to the records.

Barbone had been living with his girlfriend and her two  other children in Sunny Creek Courts on the south part of town, the manager of  the trailer court said. Barbone had moved out after being charged with domestic
battery, but that the family was back together again late last week, and  neighbors saw Barbone and his girlfriend smiling together, the manager said.  Barbone had visitation custody with  the infant, according to court records.

Father charged in slaying of teen

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/father-charged-in-slaying-of-teen/2011/05/21/AFzRYj8G_story.html?wprss=rss_local

I’ve only read the Washington Post article regarding this case – which has “father” in the headlines, but I’ve  seen other that said “man.”  It also says he killed “teen” not daughter. Lastly, the WaPo quotes  that the father had a “sexual relationship” with the the teen – huh?!  Isn’t this molestation?!

It says the girl lived with Mom but visited Dad.

Valrico father arrested after child’s thigh bone is
fractured

http://www.tampabay.com/news/publicsafety/crime/valrico-father-arrested-after-childs-thigh-bone-is-fractured/1170540

VALRICO — A 24-year-old man was accused of aggravated child abuse Thursday  after deputies say he pulled his 3-year-old boy to the ground and fractured the child’s thigh bone.

This is what the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office says happened:

Matthew Clark was changing his 1-year-old’s diaper at his apartment on N Valrico Road when his 3-year-old came up to him, which aggravated Clark. He grabbed the  3-year-old by the shoulder and pulled the child to the ground.

The child hit the ground with his left knee and fell on his side. Clark heard a  pop. The child cried.

But deputies say the father didn’t seek medical treatment or call 911. About  half an hour later, he dropped both
children off with their mother
. She took them to the hospital. Clark, who lists his occupation as a shift leader at Tijuana Flats, was being held in jail without bail.

Tenn.
Custody bill that seeks to maximize parents’ involvement headed to governor

http://www.greenfieldreporter.com/view/story/f2918ebe4e0b4c318432988b26a87bd0/TN-XGR–Child-Custody/

NASHVILLE,  Tenn. — A proposal that would require  judges to consider how to maximize a parent’s involvement in a child’s life  when making custody decisions is headed to the governor for his
consideration.

The measure sponsored by Democratic Sen. Andy Berke of Chattanooga was approved  19-9 by the Senate on Saturday. The House version passed 92-0 last month. Although  not the only factor to be considered, legal experts say the call for “maximum participation possible” could lead some judges to increase visitation time or divide custody 50-50 more often.

Democratic  Sen. Beverly Marrero of Memphis says judges should be given “tools to do what they think is in the best interest of the children of Tennessee.” Gov. Bill Haslam is expected to review the proposal once it reaches his desk.

Australia  is having their problems with Fathers rights, too:

Children, the biggest losers in shared care?

http://www-public.jcu.edu.au/jcnn/makingnews/JCU_079915

“In the Family Court, the Howard Government brought in a law colloquially known as the ‘shared care’ law,”
Overington said. “It essentially requires judges of the Family Court to  consider giving parents a 50-50 or a shared care split of the children after divorce.”

The law represented a radical  change in policy. Judges are now being asked to consider the child’s best interests will be served by an equal relationship with both parents, almost  regardless of the circumstances Overington said.

“They are now legally bound to do  so and, ironically, they are splitting custody between the parents who are least able to share.

“Something like nine in 10 couples reach an agreement themselves before they even reach the Family Court. The cases that do end up in court are the ones where the  couples are essentially at war over even the smallest details of their  children’s lives. Yet they are the ones who are forced to cooperate. That’s why we’ve ended up with the kind of problems we’ve seen.”

Overington outlines an example  where a man and woman have a one-night stand and the woman falls pregnant, reminiscent of a case in New South Wales earlier this year. “The father was not, according to the mother’s testimony, that interested in having a relationship with the child, but very desperately did not want to pay any maintenance,” Overington  said.

“According to the law, the more time you have custody of the child the less you have to pay in maintenance, so the father wanted to have the child 50 per cent of the time.

“So you have a child under the age of one – still on the breast – being shuffled back  and forwards between houses at two-hour intervals so both parents can have  their equal time.

“To my mind, that is not in the best interests of the child. It may be in the best interests of the father, but it’s certainly not in the best interests of the infant.”

New bill on child abuse aims to halt false claims

http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110519/NEWS/105190332

The bill is designed to discourage adults from using malicious allegations of abuse in bitter divorce or child custody cases, supporters say.

And-

Mish said holding people accountable for false reports is “a good thing.” But the bill could  have the unintended consequence of  keeping children trapped in abusive situations because adults are fearful of making a report that, while true, might not be able to be proven, she said.

If they were familiar with current research, they’d know that the vast majority of abuse claims are made in good faith. This punishment can hurt protective parents and children more than it can help innocent men. (And it disregards
the false accusations of being an unfit or unstable mother).

Stepmother of boy accused of killing his neo-Nazi father charged with child endangerment

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/05/neo-nazi-father-killed.html

Two of Hall’s children were from a previous marriage, including his  10-year-old son. According to court records, the boy had a history of  aggression and violence after his parents went through a bitter divorce, with both Hall and his ex-wife, Leticia Neal of Spokane, Wash., accusing each other of abusing and neglecting the
children.

Hall was granted full custody of the children. Last year, Neal filed for custody of the 10-year-old
boy and his 9-year-old sister, saying she was concerned about the children’s well-being because of the father’s affiliation with the neo-Nazi group. Hall opposed the motion, saying Neal had had no contact with the children for six years.

Disabled mom fights for custody of son

http://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/relationships-and-special-occasions/parenting/aisha-sultan/article_1873270b-be68-5672-b379-8887a18e02b3.html

And now, with their child in kindergarten, she’s trapped in a yearlong custody battle with her ex-boyfriend, the baby’s father. Currently, the parents share custody, but her ex is seeking full custody. Flynn says her disability is at the heart of the issue.

“Her ability to parent because of her disability will be on trial,” her attorney Jack Cavanagh said. A resulting side effect of the  stroke has been aphasia, a language disorder that makes her struggle to find the words she wants to communicate. Her speech comes in short, halting bursts, and she lost her ability to read.

Mother’s Day round up

Happy Mother’s Day to all – to those that have children, to those that have lost children, and to those that care for children.

When we hated mom – NY Times article by Stephanie Coontz – provides an historical account of motherhood from a (feminist) sociological perspective. Feminism, Coontz explains, has improved the lives of women (and men) – but, hey, we knew that! Interesting to note, though, society’s disparaging view of protective mothers:

Momism became seen as a threat to the moral fiber of America on a par with communism. In 1945, the psychiatrist Edward Strecher argued that the 2.5 million men rejected or discharged from the Army as unfit during World War II were the product of overly protective mothers.

From the Washington Post, we have an article on racism…onMother’s Day. Granted, I don’t get a home copy of the Post, but this is all I could find in their daily email of headlines. It seems some media outlets would rather celebrate anniversaries (Freedom Riders, David Goldman reuniting with his son) rather than Mothers. I object to racism too, but when can we get national discussions going on sexism? They can even be combined. But, as one writer pointed out, it’s worse to be a racist than a rapist. Both should be despised.

Freedom Riders, 50 years on,  see today’s youth as disconnected from racism

The heartless way Conservatives treat young women who choose to have babies by Amanda Marcotte

Everytime I think the Republicans/Conservatives couldn’t get any worse, they surprise me with their renewed spirit of misogyny. Gotta give it to them for disguising hate with “fiscal responsibility.” There’s always some reason to put women’s issues on the back burner…or to just burn them.

The girls were arrested for holding a sit-in to protest the closing of their school, the Catherine Ferguson Academy, which was established to serve students who are pregnant or mothering.  The school provides day care and parenting classes, and focuses on getting students to college and giving them skills that help future self-sufficiency.  Supposedly “pro-life” conservatives should not only be supporting this school, but demanding that every high school in the country provide these services to teenage mothers.  After all, these girls did what anti-choicers ask of them.  They chose to have their babies.  And now the very same conservatives that wax sentimental about “choosing life” are working to shut down the educational opportunities of young women who did what anti-choicers want, by having their babies.

Don’t forget the women who’ve had injuries or their lives cut short from the men that supposedly loved them and fathered children with them – and, please, don’t forget that it’s more often when these women do the “right thing” that they get injured or killed (far too many people, including feminists, blame the victim for “staying” with an abuser) –

Man charged with ambush slayings of ex, her dad

Orange County prosecutors have charged a 36-year-old man with murdering his ex-wife and her father after they came to his home to take court-ordered custody of the couple’s 7-year-old daughter.

Ex-wife. She left him. They came to take court-ordered custody. Court must have granted dad custody if they came to take her back. It wasn’t enough to kill the ex-wife. He killed her father, too — he shot them both in the backs, the coward.  This 7-year-old just lost her mother (and grandfather) in the week leading up to Mother’s Day. 

Roughly 3 women die every day in domestic violence in this country. This week alone, we’ve lost 21 women, many of whom were mothers.

Candlelight vigil for murdered mother of four

Fresno – Four kids are dealing with the loss of their mother after a murder-suicide in southeast Fresno Tuesday.

The kids were joined about 100 family members and friends Wednesday night for a candlelight vigil.

They gathered on Shields Avenue, the spot where 28-year-old Jennifer Puentes Chatman died, after her ex-boyfriend, 34-year-old Richard Haynes, shot her.

She is the victim of a deadly domestic violence dispute.

This article also ‘blamed the victim’, saying she had chances to leave, but didn’t. But – why didn’t she? Because he threatened to take or kill the kids? Because she feared sharing custody with him or worse, losing custody all together? Because she didn’t have faith in the justice system? Because she feared not being believed? Because women are in greatest danger when they leave?

 Mom with cancer loses custody of kids

This 37-year-old stay-at-home mother lost custody of her 2 children because she was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. She lives in North Carolina. The father is taking the kids to Illinois. Nice. What a Mother’s Day.

No woman, no cry – Oprah is offering this documentary for free for the next ten days. It discusses death during childbirth.

Mothers rally for fairness in courts

Lori has spent the last eight years fighting the courts for custody of her two children. It began, she said, with her accusing her then-husband of abusing their 3-year-old boy and year-old girl. It ended with him gaining custody and her getting visitation rights.

“He drained me out,” said the 47-year-old Westfield woman, who declined to give her full name for fear it would hurt her future custody chances. She can’t afford a lawyer and has to represent herself after spending more than $100,000 in legal fees over the years.

She was a housewife. He is a lawyer. She has little money. He has lots.

It is a formula that legal experts and advocates say creates a lopsided matchup in the courtroom for custody cases – one in which the mother most often loses.

It looks like HE takes HER to the cleaners – then, why, oh why, does the media portray the opposite?

And, remember, there’s a candlelight vigil tonight from 6-9 pm in front of the White House (see post below).

Happy Mother’s Day to all — Let’s work towards improving the very lives that give us life