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Tabachnick: Ignoring the Science on Parental Alienation

June 28, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

One remarkable aspect of Cara Tabachnick’s frankly dishonest piece on parental alienation and the reunification program Family Bridges is the number of people who refused to be interviewed by her (Washington Post, 5/11/17). By my count, she quoted 13 people in her article, but another 11 refused to be interviewed or interact with her at all. And one of the ones who did, i.e. one of her trusted sources, Arianna Riley, won renown by threatening to bomb a TSA facility at the Los Angeles International Airport.

There are a number of reasons why a person or entity might refuse to be interviewed, but, when I spoke with Dr. Deirdre Rand of Family Bridges, she told me she saw Tabachnick as untrustworthy and promoting a dishonest agenda. Rand told me she Googled Tabachnick and found articles she’d written that dissuaded her from cooperating in the article. As but one example, this article would be enough to convince anyone who believes in fairness and balance to avoid Tabachnick like the plague (Daily Beast, 5/5/10).

 

Family Bridges Reunification Worked, but Cara Tabachnick Pretends Otherwise

June 26, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

Like all dishonest journalism, Cara Tabachnick’s article on parental alienation and the Family Bridges reunification program starts with a thesis and ignores the overwhelming weight of evidence that contradicts it (Washington Post, 5/11/17). In Friday’s piece I gave a few examples of her use of words, phrases and sentences that seem to intentionally mislead the reader. But those few barely scratch the surface. Tabachnick’s piece fairly teems with dodgy phrasing that points the reader toward her thesis – that parental alienation is a dubious theory and efforts to ameliorate its sometimes horrible results are mere “shams” designed to line the pockets of less than scrupulous mental health professionals.

As I mentioned Friday, Tabachnick undermines the first part of her thesis – that the very existence of PA is doubtful – by selecting a family on whose experiences she hangs the rest of her article, in which alienation had pretty plainly occurred. Tabachnick’s own description of the children of the Jeu family looks very much like that of alienated kids. Into the bargain, the mental health professional assigned by the court to evaluate them and the judge in the case concluded that, in fact, their mother, Sharon Jeu had alienated them. It’s a strange way to cast doubt on the existence of PA.

 

Compare and Contrast: Nielsen vs. Tabachnick

June 25, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

Today I’m going to deviate slightly from my previous posts on Cara Tabachnick’s misleading article on parental alienation and the Family Bridges reunification program (Washington Post, 5/11/17). Last time I pointed out several of her very many statements that, whether by design or not, clearly mislead Washington Post readers. Here’s one of the most egregious ones:

There’s scant gold-standard scientific research to help practitioners determine the best custody arrangement.

 

Washington Post Edges Close to Defamation

June 23, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

Continued from yesterday’s post about this article by Cara Tabachnick (Washington Post, 5/11/17).

Unlike writers like Marisa Endicott and Laurie Udesky, Tabachnick is relatively skilled at suggesting, rather than telling readers outright, that which is either false or misleading. Many of her words are plainly designed to get readers to believe a particular proposition without subjecting Tabachnick and the Washington Post to demands for a retraction and threats of lawsuits. She has a fairly high level of skill at that.

Still, Tabachnick has her moments.

 

Reunification after Alienation: The Washington Post Channels the ‘Protective Mother’ Movement

June 22, 2017 by Robert Franklin, Esq, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

I’ve done several pieces recently about the shoddy articles that attempt to debunk the notion of parental alienation and parental alienation syndrome. They’re scandalously bad, ignoring vast numbers of pertinent facts, blatantly making up others, mis-defining parental alienation and, of course, selecting individual cases that seem to support their off-the-wall ideas while ignoring those that don’t.

Those articles invariably channel the natterings of the “protective mother movement” that takes as an article of faith that family courts routinely remove children from “protective” mothers and hand them over to abusive fathers. They do this often, the movement claims, because the dastardly dads have an ace up their sleeve – the allegation of parental alienation. According to the movement and the articles that serve as their mouthpiece, courts, as a matter of course, ignore mothers’ claims of abuse and swallow whole fathers’ claims of PA. That, in every state, domestic violence is a factor in determining custody never makes it into the articles or the narrative of the “protective mother” movement.


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