ANYBODY THERE? THE AGONY OF SILENCE

https://youtu.be/74aOxH4R5Ow — SONG FOR INSPIRATION…..

 

QUIET SCARES ME BECAUSE IT SCREAMS THE TRUTH! WE ARE WARRIORS ALWAYS WIN.

LETS TURN AWAY FROM HOPELESSNESS, USE YOUR PAIN AS MOMENTUM TO CUT THROUGH THE LAYERS OF DEFECTION, HIGHLIGHT THE UNJUST CIRCUMSTANCES LEADING TO A PHENOMENON SWEEPING THE WORLD QUIETLY AND WE NEED TO BAND TOGETHER AND TOPPLE THE GLITCHES AND LOOPHOLES, LACK OF EDUCATION AND TACKLE THE BIGWIGS IGNORANCE AND DECEIT WHICH IS BEHIND THIS NEVER ENDING PARENTAL NIGHTMARE THAT NEVER GOES AWAY…

The BRAIN-WASHING, ABUSIVE BEHAVIOR WITH THE TUNNEL vision MINDSET or motivation to TAKE THE CHILDREN AND our PRECIOUS CHILDREN’S DEVELOPING PSYCHE.

MY KIDS NEED MY VOICE AND SO DO YOURS! LET’S FIGHT THIS TOGETHER –

Through SUCH SADNESS I AM COMMITTED TO SPENDING ALL OF MY TIME DOING WHATEVER I CAN….TO INCREASE AWARENESS,  FORTH THE TRUTH HARVESTING STRENGTH, THE ABILITY TO COPE AND FIGHT FOR JUSTICE AND UNDERSTANDING OF PATHOGENIC PARENTING  HAVE A PURPOSE – AND WHY? YOU MAY SAY…,WE NEED TO SPEAK OUT, JOIN TOGETHER ‘BOOTS ON THE GROUND’ WARRIORS
SHOUT FROM THE ROOFTOPS, BANISH IGNORANCE EXCHANGE STORIES (ALL VERY FAMILIAR THEMES CONSISTENT WITH EVIDENCE OF past and present ABUSE

KEEP BREAKING DOWN THE WALL OF TORTUROUS SILENCE BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR CHILDREN WHO ARE THE MAJOR LONG TERM. And I will recommence working on my book, website, chatting to other targeted parents, the encouragement and promoting knowledge, empowerment ,and hard for the children to discern which parent can the trust? In their eyes, no one can be.

A day in the life of a targeted parent is exhausting and torturous daily as we sit grieving, thinking and worrying constantly, their little faces flashing through my mind and the last time. In my personal case, once he’d physically got the kids away from mes( I naively and albeit stupidly left them for what was meant to be one week. It’s now been about 5 years and ALL contact and communication with my babies has come to a grinding halt. Whilst I was in hospital the destructive and decisive campaign waged with simply one GOAL  FOR ABUSE AGAINST OUR CHILDREN,beginnings of  usually no information from the abusive parent regarding how they are, 

At the mercy of severe disconnect both emotionally and physically is an inevitable but very common obstacle making endurance, strength, courage and power to open up, come out of the seemingly lonely daily grind resembling “A MOTHER’S WORST NIGHTMARE”Pathogenic parenting a daily hell. Every single day, hour, minutes and seconds consume your very existence. I was an excellent parent and actually left their father to save their lives…swept up under the carpet destroying the parent-child dynamic.

  It’s absolute torture for parents trying to make contact with their babies. reestablishing a now destructive parent child dynamic with both parents often placing extraordinary pressure to essentially parent themselves, borne from the years of spiteful abuse.

It can seem impossible but please have hope that in time – healing can begin…Hope is your secret  weapon to raise awareness and dealing with most malevolent form of abuse and cut off from the role you so passionately lived for. Being a MUM! BEING CALLED MUM…and the never ending pattern GRIEVING THE LOSS OF THEIR BEAUTIFUL children for no apparent reason to a man who has  it’s the continual WORRYING ABOUT THE CHILDREN’S WELL-BEING, HAPPINESS AND SAFETY IS ONLY COMPOUNDED BY HOW MUCH WE ARE COPING being separated from our babies…one minute you are an amazing Mum who’s had loved and raised beautiful children next minute they want nothing to do with you – the ultimate achievement for an abusive parent..Warfare against us -carefully erased their swirling web of lies.THE ABUSIVE PARENT SEE THE KIDS not AS KIDS, BUT VESSELS BRAIN-WASHED ZOMBIES PARROTING ADULT IMPLANTED NEGATIVITY straight FROM THE ABUSIVE PARENTS MOUTH AND BLINDLY BECOMING LIKE PUPPETS.TURNING THEM AGAINST THEIR OWN MOTHER…THIS IS BUT ON LIES AND DECEIT.

MY KIDS NEED MY VOICE AND SO DO YOURS! LET’S FIGHT THIS TOGETHER!

 

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The Child Custody Industry in Mental Health – Dr. C. Childress

The Child Custody Industry in Mental Health

Standard

There is no validity whatsoever to the conclusions and recommendations reached by child custody evaluations.  None.  Zero.

Different custody evaluators can reach entirely different conclusions and recommendations based on the same data (no inter-rater reliability), there is no definition as to what constitutes the “best interests” of the child, and child custody evaluators are free to apply, misapply, or not apply any, some, or none of the constructs and principles of professional psychology.

The conclusions and recommendations offered by child custody evaluations are no more valid than a monkey throwing darts at a dartboard.

Disagree?  Provide me with one citation that demonstrates that the conclusions and recommendations reached by child custody evaluations are any more valid than a monkey throwing darts at a dartboard. <crickets>

The conclusions and recommendations of child custody evaluations are simply made up out of thin air.  Child custody evaluators spend lots and lots of time collecting data (all at $250 to $300 an hour – very lucrative), and they spend lots and lots of time writing, documenting the content of the data they’ve collected (again, all at $250 to $300 an hour – very lucrative), but as for the conclusions and recommendations they reach… well they just make those up.

Seriously, no exaggeration.  They just entirely make up whatever conclusions and recommendations they want.

Q: “Don’t they base their conclusions and recommendations on the data they’ve collected?”

A:  Nope.  They just make up whatever conclusions and recommendations they want based on their personal biases and their idiosyncratic base of knowledge – or lack of knowledge, and then they fit these conclusions and recommendation over the data.

Slip-Cover Analogy:  It’s kind of like making a slip-cover for a couch.  The slip-cover has the basic couch shape, but the question is whether the actual couch is a green couch, or a red couch, or a leather couch?  Who knows.  The “color” is decided by the evaluator who is making the slip-cover, and it’s whatever color the custody evaluator decides, irrespective of the actual color of the couch.  If the evaluator wants a blue couch, then the evaluator simply makes a blue slip-cover for the couch.  If the evaluator wants it to be a red couch, no problem, the evaluator simply makes a red slip-cover.  What color the couch actually is… well, we’ll just never know.

Child custody evaluators are 100% free to apply, misapply, or not apply any, some, or none of the established constructs and principles of professional psychology to the data.  There is no standardization to the interpretation of the data, not even any standardization related to the application of established constructs and principles of professional psychology to the interpretation of the data.

Seriously, I kid you not.  They just make up their conclusions in any way they want.  I am absolutely stone cold serious about that.  No exaggeration.  As a consultant for attorneys, I’ve read these evaluations.  The evaluators just make it up.  The reporting on the data is fine, it’s their conclusions and recommendations that they simply make up willy-nilly, any way they want.

Do they apply the constructs and principles of attachment theory to an attachment related family pathology?  Nope.  Apparently there’s no need.

Do they apply family systems constructs and principles to family conflicts and problems?  Nope.  Apparently, there’s no need to do that either.

How about applying the fundamentals of the DSM diagnostic system to pathology evidenced in the family?  Nope.  No need.  In fact, the professional practice Standards of the APA and AFCC actually encourage child custody evaluators NOT to tell the court about the presence of any DSM-related pathology evidenced by the parents because a diagnostic label might be “prejudicial” to that parent’s efforts to obtain custody of the child.  Go figure.  Isn’t intentionally withholding relevant diagnostic information from the Court just as prejudicial in the opposite direction, against the normal-range parent?  Oh well, even DSM diagnostic information is not applied to the data.

How about applying standard personality disorder constructs such as narcissistic, borderline, or the evidenced-based Dark Triad personality pathology (Paulhus & Williams, 2002) to understanding the family’s interaction patterns?  Nope.  No need.

How about applying the principles of parental “psychological control” of the child (Barber, 2002), or parental “boundary violations” with the child (Kerig, 2005), or an “invalidating environment” created by distorted parenting practices (Linehan, 1993)?  Nope.  No need.

How about simply defining what the construct of the child’s “best interests” means and how that will be determined?  Nope.  No need to do that either.

So then my question to child custody evaluators would be:

Q:  Then what ARE the principles and constructs from professional psychology that you are systematically applying as the basis for interpreting the data and reaching your conclusions and recommendations?

A:  Whatever we feel like.  We actually don’t have to use any constructs or principles from professional psychology.  We are 100% free to just do whatever we want with regard to interpreting the data.  We just reach any conclusion we want, and then we make recommendations.

Q:  So you reach whatever conclusions you feel like regarding the family processes and the child’s best interests without necessarily applying any of the established constructs and principles of professional psychology in any systematic way to your analysis?

A:  Yep.  And you know the best part?  The Court then seals the report so that no one ever reviews the accuracy of the conclusions we’ve reached and the recommendations we’ve made.  Pretty sweet deal, eh?  And even if the report is ever reviewed, it’s only reviewed by another forensic psychologist who is in the same racket, er, field, of also conducting child custody evaluations, and they only review the report as to whether the proper data collection procedures were followed, NOT whether the conclusions were accurate and the recommendations were warranted by the data.

There is no scientifically or theoretically established foundation for the conclusions and recommendations reached by child custody evaluators.  Zero.  None.

‘Brainwashed into believing our mother abandoned us for 18 years’

Reblogged on WordPress.com

Source: ‘Brainwashed into believing our mother abandoned us for 18 years’

The Handmaids Tale

 

I had the chance, once, to put my money where my mouth was. It was an experience not unlike being woken in the middle of the night by a foreign noise in your home and having only seconds to decide whether you will grab the baseball bat from the corner and walk toward the sound or hide in the closet instead.

My 110 eleventh graders were reading Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, and one of our administrators had notified me that the parents of one of those students had contacted the superintendent directly to complain about the assignment and, of course, demand that the book be removed from the curriculum, the school, the county, and, if possible, scrubbed from the fabric of their child’s brain. I told the administrator that I would gladly meet with the parents to discuss their concerns.


This was a lie on two fronts. For one, I wasn’t glad about any of this. And for another, I was using a broader definition of the word “discuss” which includes indignant shouting and fist-shaking. But meet we did. I could tell you that, with Darrow-like precision, I cut away the heart of their argument and led them into the green pastures of enlightened understanding, but two lies is enough for one paragraph. No one shouted, minds and hearts failed to transform, and we promised nothing more than to revisit the policy allowing for alternate novel assignments if requested. Shortly thereafter, I was asked by a very supportive administrator to draft a statement detailing my rationale for selecting the novel in the first place so that if anyone else, including district-level personnel, expressed concerns about the book, the statement could be given to them in lieu of dragging me to more meetings.

This is what I wrote:

My selection of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale for study in my AP Language and Composition classes has come under scrutiny, related primarily (though not exclusively) to a passage which includes explicit reference the sexual assault of a woman enduring forced servitude in a dystopian, totalitarian future. I would like to take this opportunity to provide a cogent rationale for my selection of the book in response to the concerns expressed by some parents.

To start, it is worth noting that The Handmaid’s Tale is used in high school and college classrooms across the nation. A cursory internet search reveals its inclusion in AP Language and Literature curricula in Texas, Massachusetts, Ohio, California, and Kentucky. Margaret Atwood is included as a representative author in the AP Language and Composition Course Description, and The Handmaid’s Tale has been repeatedly referenced as a text of literary merit on the AP English Literature exam. The novel’s reputation as a valuable piece of North American literature and an essential addition to the canon of speculative fiction and science fiction is well established.

That said, I did not select The Handmaid’s Tale for study simply because of its reputation. I read the book twice before assigning it. The passage that has caused the most concern caught my attention when I read the novel, as it is meant to. The scene is shocking, the language explicit. However, it is not without literary purpose. The novel’s main character and narrator is subjected repeatedly to degrading, oppressive treatment simply because she is a woman. In Atwood’s attempt to capture the horrors that exist in places where women’s rights are ignored and women themselves treated, as Atwood’s narrator puts it, as “incubators with legs,” she uses graphic diction. Rape is horrific, obviously, and Atwood’s words reflect that. Though the image is explicit, it is not arbitrarily so. Just as pictures of the naked, starved, tortured victims in Auschwitz are explicit, yet may edify our understanding of their plight and our resolution to steel ourselves against the possibility of their reoccurrence. Exposure to a shocking thing is not equivalent to promotion of that thing. If that were so, then The Iliad would be a promotion of violence and destruction, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn would be a promotion of racism, Beloved would be a promotion of infanticide, and Lord of the Flies would be a promotion of savagery.


The other major concern regarding The Handmaid’s Tale is its alleged “anti-Christian” outlook. It is true that within the novel, the militaristic ruling class uses snippets of Biblical scripture and hymns to provide justifications for their policies and actions. However, these snippets are often just that: portions of verses, devoid of context, used in a way totally counter to their original intention. Because citizens of the novel’s dystopia are forbidden to read anything, even the Bible itself, they have no way of investigating scripture for themselves. In The Handmaid’s Tale, the language of faith has been twisted and misappropriated for nefarious means, just as Ham’s disobedience was once used to justify slavery in the United States, just as Hitler claimed his genocide was God’s will. Understanding the capacity that humanity has shown to use false piety to validate oppression is a fundamental moral lesson in this novel, one from which students of any faith may gain a clearer understanding of man’s potential for evil.

I hope that these statements have provided some clarity about the concerns I have mentioned. I would add only that one of the functions of literature is to shed light into the corners of our world, even if what we find there is unpleasant.

Josh Corman

Just A Small Child Without A Voice – A Poem…

Poem from protective Mom Hazel
“Just a Small Child without a Voice”
I am just a small child,
I do not have a voice.
I cannot stand and testify,
I do not have a choice.
If only you would listen,
Ah, what is the use?
You would not listen to my mum,
When she told you of abuse.
She told you what she witnessed,
The things I said and did.
She knew they were not normal,
Not like a normal kid.
My daddy said it’s nonsense,
He wants me to live there,
But I don’t want to always be
Hiding behind a chair.
Scared he’s going to get me.
Play naughty games again,
Tells me it’s a secret.
Laughs as I feel pain.
But I don’t want to lose him,
And so I always go,
I play along with what he wants,
And hope no one ever knows.
Mummy’s waiting for me,
And I know I shouldn’t say,
But one day something tumbles out,
As I am just at play.
She asked me lots of questions,
I told her of the games,
Then lots of people came around,
With lots of different names.
They all asked the same things,
Did daddy frighten me?
Did I know what touch is bad,
Why could they not see?
I wanted to just vanish,
I didn’t want to say,
I’d told my mum already,
Now please just go away.
I must have been real naughty,
I must have been real bad,
They stopped asking questions,
And I cannot see my dad.
But everything feels better,
Mum loves me oh so fine.
With her I feel protected,
Dearest mum of mine.
Then suddenly my world crumbles,
The judge has had his say,
I cannot understand it,
Now at dad’s I have to stay.
Mummy left me with a tear,
She told me to be strong,
And one day she will come for me,
Oh! I hope it won’t be long.
I cannot testify,
I do not have a choice,
I am just a small child,
I do not have a voice.
Poem by Protective Mom Hazel

Why Was the Child Victims Act Abandoned?

“She was 14 going on 35, and I never forced her.” I read the quote twice.

It chafed at me like a scratchy thread sticking out on a sweater. You pull the strand, keep yanking, and pretty soon, the whole garment starts to unravel.

I was sitting at my kitchen table on Christmas morning last year, with coffee and laptop, as I do every morning. This headline from The New York Times popped up in my Facebook news feed:

“A Spiritual Leader Gains Stature, Trailed by a Troubled Past,” with a photo of former rabbi turned spiritual guru, accused sexual predator Marc Gafni. “14 going on 35” was how Gafni described one of his accusers.

And this grabbed me:

“A co-founder of Whole Foods, John Mackey, a proponent of conscious capitalism, calls Mr. Gafni ‘a bold visionary.’ He is a chairman of the executive board of Mr. Gafni’s center, and he hosts board meetings at his Texas ranch.”

I have spent the better part of 30 years as an executive recruiter. I started out after college at American Express corporate headquarters in lower Manhattan. I was ghostwriting announcements for executives about company shakeups and reorgs. So I’ve been around CEOs for a long time.

I pretty much retired from recruiting after my own shakeup and re-org three years ago. My mother died suddenly, and I found out that my boyfriend, a renowned oncologist at a big university hospital, was cheating, seeing two other women. So when I read about Gafni, a brilliant, charismatic and seductive sexual predator, he sounded familiar. But when I read that the CEO of a $10 billion public company was supporting him, my eyeballs popped out of my head.

I figured Mackey would do what any CEO would do, when The New York Times reports you’re buddied up with a guy who admits to having sex with a 14-year old, you run the other way. Fast. So everyone sees just the trail of smoke behind you. I imagined the Whole Foods HR and PR people scurrying about like hamsters in a snake cage, writing a statement for Mackey: I didn’t really know him, only met him twice, don’t have anything to do with him. And so on. But that’s not what happened.

Mackey doubled down on Gafni. Whole Foods buried its corporate head in the sand. And I didn’t take the road most traveled either.

After I read The Times story, I emailed Whole Foods’ PR guy and chairman of the board, John Elstrott. I wrote:

“I trust that Whole Foods Market leadership and board of directors would agree that supporting a sexual predator is not aligned with nor representative of Whole Foods Market’s core values and integrity.”

The PR guy responded, “John Mackey’s involvement with Marc Gafni and the Center for Integral Wisdom is his personal business and does not represent an endorsement or support for either Mr. Gafni or the Center for Integral Wisdom by Whole Foods Market.”

I noticed what he didn’t say, something to this effect:

“Whole Foods disdains and disavows anyone who admits to having sex with a 14-year old girl.”

I was able to reach Whole Foods board member Gabrielle Greene Sulzberger on the phone (she’s married to New York Times publisher and chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr.; more on the Sulzbergers in a moment). A powerful woman would be horrified by this story and take swift action, wouldn’t she? Mrs. Sulzberger thanked me for bringing the story to her attention. She said she was vacationing with her family in South Africa, and my call had interrupted their dinner. She gave me permission to email The Times story to her.

The Times’ expose about Gafni busted open a dam, giving way to a flood of stories, people sharing their nightmares. Sara Kabakov identified herself as the then-14-year old described by Gafni in the Times story as “going on 35.” She came forward publicly for the first time in an opinion piece in the Forward: “I Was 13 When Marc Gafni’s Abuse Began.”

New York Rabbi David Ingber, named one of the top 50 rabbis in the country by Newsweek, launched an online petition, signed by more than 100 rabbis and Jewish leaders. The petition was aimed at Whole Foods and the Esalen Institute, a new age teaching center, famous for its clothing-optional hot tubs, where Gafni was scheduled to teach. Comments on the petition told story upon story from women who had been duped by the charismatic rabbi, turned spiritual guru.

I started investigating and writing about Mackey’s and Whole Foods’ relationship with Gafni. For Wear Your Voice Magazine, an intersectional feminist media site, I wrote: “As Spotlight Wins Oscar, Silence Surrounds Ex-Rabbi Marc Gafni’s Alleged Misdeeds.”

I kept bothering Whole Foods executives, Mackey, and his colleagues at Conscious Capitalism, Inc., the nonprofit he co-founded. I helped organize and publicize coordinated protests at Whole Foods in New York and at the grand opening of their 365 store in LA, as reported by The Washington Post. I recruited leaders from nonprofits SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, as seen in the Spotlight movie), NAASCA (National Association of Adult Survivors of Abuse), and Peaceful Hearts Foundation — an advocacy nonprofit founded by Matthew Sandusky, adopted and abused son of reviled pedophile Jerry Sandusky.

A few friends asked me, “Why do you care so much about a guy who’s accused of having sex with a 13-year old girl?”

Because I was once a 13-year old girl fending off a relative making sexual advances. I didn’t have help, and I couldn’t speak up. So I’m making up for lost time. One-in-four girls have been that girl. I’m speaking up for 43 million survivors who didn’t have a voice and those who still don’t. There’s no shortage of material and stories about the devastating effects of child sexual abuse. PTSD, depression, suicide, addiction, etc. Did you see the Spotlight movie? Suffice it to say, getting sexually abused as a child fucks you up. That’s why.

Mackey eventually succumbed to pressure and released a statement. He declared his loyalty to Gafni, which hinged on a presumption of innocence. Gafni has admitted to having sexual relations with a 14-year old, published in The New York Times, the paper of record. But Mackey presumes Gafni’s innocence. Gafni was most recently reported teaching a tantric sex training in New York. So why is this guy still on the loose?

Enter the Child Victims Act of New York state. To say it’s a lingering piece of proposed legislation would be like calling the Hindenburg a blimp. The bill is surrounded by a fiery, raging battle. First introduced in 2009, the proposed legislation would extend the statute of limitations for claims of child abuse. So if the bill is enacted, Gafni, and every guy who ever said, “She was 14 going on 35,” or thought the same while he was sexually abusing a girl, may be fair game for legal action.

The New York Daily News reported extensively on the Child Victims Act. Hundreds of survivors and supporters flooded the Brooklyn Bridge in June, marching in support of the bill. Activist Phil Saviano, real-life hero portrayed in the Spotlight movie, joined the marchers. The Daily News reported that the Catholic Church paid lobby groups more than $2 million to try to block the legislation.

Author Jason Berry said, “If the NY law changes, it will expose the church to the potential of heavy civil losses and another media firestorm. That is why they are fighting hard and spending large in efforts to kill the bill.” Berry has authored several books on this topic, including Render unto Rome: The Secret Life of Money in the Catholic Church, published by Penguin Random House, winner of an Investigative Reporters and Editors Best Book Award.

On the day before I hit the road to LA for the protest at 365 by Whole Foods in May, I noticed that The New York Times hadn’t covered any recent news about the Child Victims Act. Governor Andrew Cuomo had announced his support, called for by The Times’ Editorial Board in a 2014 opinion piece. So why wasn’t The Times reporting news about the governor’s announcement, or the Catholic Church’s payout to lobby groups?

I emailed The Times’ executive editor Dean Baquet and politely asked him why the newspaper wasn’t covering news about the Child Victims Act.

I had noticed the connection between The Times and Whole Foods. The wife of The Times’ publisher and chairman Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr., Gabrielle Greene Sulzberger, sits on the Whole Foods board of directors. I’ve recruited board members. Typically, they work 5–15 days a year and pull down a hefty salary. Mrs. Sulzberger’s Whole Foods 2014 cash comp was around $422,000. A 2015 SEC report showed she owned 64,666 shares of Whole Foods stock, worth about $2 million. Not a shabby payday.

It occurred to me that if the Child Victims Act is passed, and Gafni becomes a target of civil or criminal claims, things might not be so pleasant for Whole Foods, their CEO, their stock, and their board of directors — of which Mrs. Sulzberger is a member.

I debated whether to mention the connection in my email to Baquet. But since I had noticed it, I felt like I had to point out the relationship. In the email, I said presumably there’s no connection between the Sulzberger family financial interests in Whole Foods and The Times’ non-coverage of the Child Victims Act. I told him I was just curious about The Times’ decision not to cover related news.

Baquet responded: “Only someone quite paranoid would see such a connection.”

I felt stung, ashamed. I assumed he was right: I must be paranoid. Most survivors can be paranoid, and I’m no exception. And anyone who has suffered any kind of abuse is a ripe target for gaslighting. People in power can make us feel like we’re crazy. As an antidote, I’ve learned to seek reality checks.

I asked two A-list journalism professors, Sandra Davidson from the University of Missouri, and David S. Allen from the University of Wisconsin about the appearance of a conflict of interest at The Times. Independent of each other, the professors both called for The Times to be transparent, reveal corporate connections. I shared their opinions with Baquet. He responded, “I can’t edit the Times for you personally.” Ouch. Again ouch.

But I wasn’t asking Baquet to edit The Times for me personally. I was asking him why The Times wasn’t covering news that affects one-in-four girls and one-in-six boys who are victims of child sexual abuse, and 43 million survivors in the U.S. And even if Baquet was right — anyone who sees a connection and wonders about a conflict of interest is “quite paranoid” — he still didn’t answer the question about coverage.

The Child Victims Act was abandoned by New York state lawmakers. I can’t help but wonder if the bill might have passed, and survivors of child sexual abuse would have a better shot at justice had The Times covered news about the bill. So why didn’t they? I think there are only two possible reasons: Either the newspaper has some conflict of interest (presumably not), or the editors at The Times did not consider news about the Child Victims Act newsworthy. But who could address such a question? Fortunately, the Times has a public editor, an editorial ombudsperson who addresses such questions.

I wrote an open letter to The Times’ public editor Liz Spayd, signed by Matthew Sandusky, Saviano, and 39 other survivors and advocacy leaders, including CEOs and executive directors of national nonprofit organizations. I figured Spayd, a powerful woman, would be sympathetic to survivors of sexual abuse and address their concerns, wouldn’t she?

Spayd’s assistant replied to the open letter, saying she was aware of the situation and “monitoring,” but that the office of the public editor doesn’t address coverage decisions. The following day, Spayd (who reports to Sulzberger) called out The Times in her public editor’s blog for their shoddy coverage: “On Gulf Coast Flooding, the Times is Late to the Scene.” So it seems the public editor does sometimes address coverage decisions. But on the Child Victims Act, the Times was absent on the scene. So was the public editor.

Spayd was, until recently, publisher of the Columbia Journalism Review. Under her editorial direction, the CJR published a piece by Steve Buttry, Director of Student Media at LSU: “The voiceless have a voice. A journalist’s job is to amplify it.” So where were The Times’ journalists when asked by the community of survivors to amplify their voice?

Author and advocate, former model Nikki DuBose wrote a scathing piece in the Huffington Post about the legislative battle over the Child Victims Act, and the Times’ non-coverage: “Denial, More Than Anything Is Hindering Progress For Victims of Child Sexual Abuse.” Professor Marci A. Hamilton, Paul R. Verkuil Chair in Public Law at the Cardozo School of Law, tweeted: “Denial, ignorance, and powerful men protecting each other,” with a link to DuBose’s piece.

Some powerful women protect powerful men. I learned in a California state domestic violence training program that, historically, for thousands of years, women have allied with their male abusers in order to ensure their own safety. It’s a survival strategy. So maybe Mrs. Sulzberger and Spayd are the legacy bearers of an ancient cultural lineage. I don’t blame them for trying to ensure their own safety.

But let’s be level-headed and rule out any questions about overlaps and connections. Let’s assume the best and most noble journalistic intentions of The Times, its publisher, executive editor, and major shareholders. Here are the connections we can rule out:

1.The Sulzberger family financial interests in Whole Foods. Did Gabrielle mention The Times’ story about Gafni and Mackey to Arthur after she hung up the phone with me, and returned to their dinner table?

2.Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim is The Times’ largest individual owner. He doubled his investment in the newspaper in 2015 and now owns about a $260 million stake. In February, Jason Berry reported in the National Catholic Reporter about the Legionaries of Christ, “a religious order founded by the late Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, a notorious pedophile dismissed by Pope Benedict XVI in 2006 to ‘a life of prayer and penitence.’” And: “The Legion operates a network of elite private schools and a major university in Mexico, with another university and house of studies in Rome. Among their many super-wealthy backers in Mexico is Carlos Slim.”

I’m not saying there’s any connection to the Child Victims Act in New York. (FYI, here’s the Legionaries’ New York headquarters, in Westchester County, near where I grew up.)

3.Carlos Slim is also connected to Bill Clinton, as reported by The Washington Post. The Daily Beast ran an expose in May on billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein and his connection to Bill Clinton (and to Donald Trump, among others), reporting, “evidence that shows Bill was one of the most famous and frequent passengers on Epstein’s “Lolita Express.” (Note: I’m a big Hillary fan; this story is not about her. I’m voting for her, and so should you!)

I’m not saying any of these connections are related in any way whatsoever to the Times’ absence of coverage of the Child Victims Act. But if the legislation is enacted, a bunch of powerful people might be sleeping fitfully.

Mark Thompson is president and CEO of The NY Times Company . He was previously director-general of the BBC. Thompson has been in the spotlight recently. The Jimmy Savile pedophilia scandal in the UK took place while Thompson headed BBC and Savile was a celebrity performer. A national inquiry into child sexual abuse is currently taking place in the UK, spurred in part by the Savile story.

There’s no connection between the Thompson-BBC-Savile story and the Child Victims Act, but there is an interesting journalism point to be made: Former Times public editor Margaret Sullivan wrote in her blog in 2012, when Thompson was about to assume his role: “Times Must Aggressively Cover Mark Thompson’s Role in BBC’s Troubles.” Sullivan wrote, “One of the most difficult challenges for news organizations is reporting on what goes on inside their own corporate walls.” Apparently, the challenge persists.

Now that we’ve ruled out any questions about potential conflicts of interest, overlaps, connections, agendas, alliances and allegiances, let’s assume The Times is lily white, the pinnacle of journalistic objectivity and neutrality.

Rhonda Hammer, Ph.D., lecturer at UCLA and winner of the UCLA Women’s Studies Programs Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2007, emailed, “I doubt that there are any experts who would deem the press or news reporting to be objective and/or neutral.”

Hammer reflected on “why the Times has been ‘ignoring,’ this (which is especially questionable given how ‘newsworthy’ this matter and related issues, like the protests, would appear to be).” She added, “It appeared to me that Dean Baquet’s response seemed especially condescending and his comments about what constitutes excellence in journalism (and what he deems as your prejudice) is problematic, especially within the context of the realities of the importance of this issue.”

In talking to journalism professors, “gatekeeping” — what information is important and becomes news — is a gray area and depends on what is considered important, and by whom.

Andrea Press, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Media Studies & Sociology at the University of Virginia said, “It’s a matter of framing. You have to work to help [The Times] recognize the issue as important. It’s possible they just don’t see it as a problem.”

Professor Allen said: “News is a social construction — it is not a natural event. It is nothing more and nothing less than what someone or some group thinks is important at a given time.”

Is news about the Child Victims Act important? I asked attorney Mitchell Garabedian, played by Stanley Tucci in the Spotlight movie.

In a phone call, Garabedian said, “The laws [in New York] are woefully inadequate. They are revictimizing the victim. In order to prevent child sexual abuse, there needs to be a change. There is no reason why due process concerns would be any different from what they are for murder.”

When I asked him why he thought The Times didn’t mention the Child Victims Act or statute of limitations in a recent story about his client Michael Meenan, whose 1984 sex abuse claim was validated by Fordham Prep school, Garabedian said, “I guess they chose not to mention that. I don’t know why.”

The Times published a letter to the editor from New York state Senator Brad Hoylman (who is a co-sponsor of the Child Victims Act and was among the marchers on the Brooklyn Bridge in June): “Justice for Victims of Sexual Abuse” following up on the story about Meenan and Fordham Prep. Underscoring the importance of the proposed legislation.

So where does all this leave us?

Let’s look to next year’s legislative session in New York, when lawmakers will again consider the Child Victims Act. Activist Gary Greenberg has founded Protect NY Kids, seeding the PAC he launched with $100,000 of his retirement funds to support candidates who are running for office and back the Child Victims Act.

Hopefully, next year, The Times will consider news about the Child Victims Act of New York important enough to cover. Professor Press said The Times may have missed coverage of the bill because the U.S. presidential election is taking up so much editorial bandwidth. We’ll be able to rule out that explanation next year.

Survivors need to be seen and heard. We’ve spent generations being silenced, shunted into dark corners, and made invisible. Lives ruined. Ethics professor Michael A. Santoro, co-founder of the Business and Human Rights Journal, said:

“It is difficult for victims of sexual abuse to say ‘I want to be heard.’ So when this heretofore silenced community courageously steps out of the shadows and asks to be heard, we (and that includes The Times) have a special obligation to listen and to not dismiss their pleas.”

Let’s all keep pulling on the threads of this story and watch it unravel.

silkils

– See more at: http://www.thefconline.com/child-victims-act-abandoned-voice-voiceless-fights-back/#sthash.LZxwSZfJ.dpuf

— Nancy Levine

A VOICE FOR VOICELESS STRIKES BACK…

A Voice for the Voiceless Strikes Back – Why Was the Child Victims Act Abandoned?
Survivors need to be seen and heard. We’ve spent generations being silenced, shunted into dark corners, and made invisible. Lives ruined. Ethics professor Michael A. Santoro, co-founder of the Business and Human Rights Journal, said: “It is difficult for victims of sexual abuse to say ‘I want to be heard.’ So when this heretofore silenced community courageously steps out of the shadows and asks to be heard, we (and that includes The Times) have a special obligation to listen and to not dismiss their pleas.” Let’s all keep pulling on the threads of this story and watch it unravel.

Some powerful women protect powerful men. I learned in a California state domestic violence training program that, historically, for thousands of years, women have allied with their male abusers in order to ensure their own safety. It’s a survival strategy. So maybe Mrs. Sulzberger and Spayd are the legacy bearers of an ancient cultural lineage. I don’t blame them for trying to ensure their own safety.spup