As a fathers' advocate, I had hope when President Obama was elected. Some expressed disappointment that the author of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) had become Vice President. They feared more gender-based discrimination. Being a liberal egalitarian, I was optimistic.
My president had said he respects our civil rights. I believed all we needed to do was show President Obama and Vice President Biden how false allegations of domestic violence hurt 170,000 children a year. 1,2 How VAWA has lead to uncontrollable corruption from individual shelters all the way to the US Department of State.
I was sure President Obama would agree that every parent deserves due process. Those parents deserve a trial with a jury of their peers, before the possibility of losing custody of their children. I wanted to show him how many fathers are absent from their children's lives, by no fault of their own.
But before I knew it, President Obama disappointed me. He also disappointed millions of fathers who are grieving the unjust absence of their children. Instead of making things more equal between the genders, we now have an Office on Women and Children. And we don't have one for men and their children.
Family Court Review, Vol. 43, No. 2, 2005.
2 Foster B. Analysis of Domestic Violence Costs in West Virginia and the Potential Cost of False or Unnecessary Claims. Social Science Research Network. September 12, 2007. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1015102