April 20, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
There’s a two-person protest underway in Highlands County, Florida. The two aren’t terribly articulate, but they know what they’re talking about; the points they make are some of the most trenchant on the subject of their protest, which is child support. These two know whereof they speak because they’ve been abused by the system, so they’re passing out fliers on the steps of the courthouse trying to recruit supporters to their cause. Read about it here (Highlands Today, 4/11/14).
Why do I write about a two-person protest? I do so because I consider the pair emblematic of what’s going on all across this country and the English-speaking world. The family law system has become so wrong-headed, so abusive, so anti-father and child, that people are “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.” The two, Edwin Padilla and Patricia Austin aren’t going to change the world, but they’ve experienced the injustice of family court and they’re standing up against it. Hey, Rosa Parks didn’t change the world either, but she sure helped. I’ve been researching and writing about family law issues for 16 years and I’ve never seen this type of momentum in the direction of the rights of fathers and children. Padilla and Austin, to their credit, are part of that movement.
April 18, 2014 by Robert Franklin, Esq.
Dorothy Lee Barnett appeared in court in Australia via Skype to consent to her extradition to the United States to face charges of parental kidnapping and falsifying passport documents. Back in 1994, she lost custody of her one-year-old daughter to her ex-husband, Benjamin Harris Todd. She’d claimed he was abusive toward her and their daughter, but the South Carolina judge in the case found against her and required her to undergo psychotherapy. That was based on a psychologist’s diagnosis of bi-polar disorder.
So one day, on the pretext of taking the child to a birthday party, Barnett disappeared. She fled first to South Africa and then to Australia where she and her daughter were discovered and Barnett was arrested. She’d changed her and her daughter’s names and apparently carried a false passport. My guess is that she was assisted in her disappearance by Faye Yager and her blatantly illegal network called Children of the Underground.