Time Magazine Urges Changes to Hague Convention to Help Mothers Who Abduct Their Children

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Fathers and Families
Time Magazine Urges Changes to Hague Convention to
Help Mothers Who Abduct Their Children
January 4, 2011
Top Stories
Time Magazine Urges Changes to Hague Convention to Help Mothers Who Abduct Their Children
By F & F Board Member Robert Franklin, Esq.

In Protecting Kids: Rethinking the Hague Convention (12/10/10), Time magazine uses a study that’s so bad as to be almost spurious to promote the article’s astonishing anti-father bias.

The Hague Convention was originally drawn up in 1980 to address the problem of parents absconding with children across international borders. Time asks:
So what happens, three decades later, when research indicates that 68% of the abducting parents in cases under this treaty are mothers — and that many of them are fleeing abusive spouses?
To which the obvious answer should be, “Nothing.”  Without evidence showing that the courts aren’t competent to deal with claims of abuse by parents, why should the Convention be changed?  After all, the Convention and the laws of most (or possibly all) of the signatory countries contain protections for abused spouses and children.  As usual, the complaint is based on the entirely unproven theory that family courts don’t care about mothers’ claims of abuse.

Time apparently believes that because the kidnappers caught in the Convention’s net are mothers, the law must be defective and something must be done. Any mother who violates the parental rights of a father is justified in doing so because she’s protecting herself or the child from abuse by him.  All claims of abuse by a mother must be taken on faith as true.  All protestations of innocence by the father are false and cynical. In some unexplained way, fathers so control family courts that mothers’ pleas of abuse go unheeded.  Pretty much anything can constitute “battering” by the dad, etc.

Thus no one should be surprised if the study touted by the article followed some version of the above.  And right on cue, enter stage left researchers Jeffrey Edleson and Taryn Lindhorst, followed closely by Time magazine, dressed as Fool. The study is 404 pages long but Edleson and Lindhorst interviewed a scant 22 mothers who claimed abuse; no fathers were interviewed; no judges were interviewed; the authors evince no skepticism of the mothers’ claims; the “definition of abuse” is laughably broad; and the authors themselves all but admit that their findings cannot be generalized.  

But to Time, all of that is perfectly acceptable. Read more here

We urge you to write a Letter to the Editor of Time magazine by clicking here or writing to [email protected].

Glass Is Three Quarters Full

We are jubilant about our many successes in 2010–making changes that will transform the American family. And we are deeply grateful for the support so many of our members have provided so that we can pursue our ambitious 2011 legislative agenda.

But the glass is not completely full. Some of our members and supporters did not give financial support in 2010. If this applies to you, please go to fathersandfamilies.org/give and make a gift now. Or make a check out to Fathers and Families and send it to 20 Park Plaza, Suite 628, Boston, MA 02116.

Millions of children are prevented from seeing one of the two people who love them the most in the world, despite court orders for parenting time. Parents work 60 hours per week to support exes who have never worked and who are comfortably re-partnered. Thousands of children are told that their best interests include moving far away from one of their parents. 

Please go to fathersandfamilies.org/give to make a gift today. Or you can set up an automatic small gift every month. In the course of a year, even $10 per month adds up to a generous gift to help us fight for what children really need—both of their parents!

Your loyalty inspires others to give. And you will feel proud that you have done your part. Don’t be left on the sidelines—join our growing army!

We wish you an abundance of all the good things in life in 2011!

Together with you in the love of our children, 

Ned Holstein, M.D., M.S.
Founder and Chairman of the Board 

Glenn Sacks, M.A.
Executive Director

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