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"There are a lot of women who use (domestic violence) as a gimmick in divorce proceedings"--New Hampshire politician Crow Dickinson "I"ve sat in lawyers" offices undercover and they said, ‘So, you"ve been abused,' said Rachel Forrest, a New Hampshire member of Fathers & Families In a story recently reported by the Associated Press in hundreds of news outlets, embattled politician Crow Dickinson of Conway, New Hampshire pointed to the problem of women using false domestic violence accusations to gain leverage in divorce. He is being crucified by misguided women's advocates. His comments came as he was asked to explain his vote against more funding for a local domestic violence service provider. In response, Fathers & Families supporters deluged the Conway town council ("Board of Selectmen") with letters in support of Dickinson. Today the local newspaper group, which includes the Laconia Daily Sun, Conway Daily Sun, and others, wrote a series of articles about our protests and the controversy. For more background on the issue, click here. In "Domestic violence dig resonates across USA," (2/27/09), reporter Nate Giarnese writes:
A Conway selectman"s crowing about domestic violence has sounded alarms around the country. And not just outraged women are answering the call of Howard "Crow' Dickinson. A nationwide fathers" rights group [asserts] that, in fact, there is truth to Dickinson"s statements that men are victimized by romantic partners. Men can also take it on the chin, as Dickinson declared controversially last week, when women file "gimmick' abuse claims to cheat in divorce battles, the advocate group said. "I"ve sat in lawyers" offices undercover and they said, ‘So, you"ve been abused,' said Rachel Forrest, a New Hampshire member of Fathers & Families Meanwhile, local women"s advocates made good on a threat to take their outrage viral and global, flooding town hall Tuesday in hopes of an apology they never got. Newspapers and Web sites across the county latched onto the story in which top prosecutor Robin Gordon decried "Neanderthal thinking'... Meanwhile, Forrest said her group will be at Monday"s town meeting to broaden the debate. "False allegations do exist,' she said. "We are against abuse of any kind but there are some who do take that route during divorce.' Dickinson Thursday said he was sorry, sort of. "I"m sorry I upset so many people. I wasn"t sorry for what I said,' he said... Dickinson said in "these meager times' it"s time to put the brakes on what has historically been an automatic pass [on Starting Point's funding] from town hall. "I"d rather give $10,000 to a soup kitchen; these people get tons of funding,' he said, explaining. "They have such a great cause. Each year they say they want this much and they get it.'
The full article can be seen beginning on page 9 here. Also, in a Letter to the Editor on page seven here, Fathers & Families supporter Robert Gartner wrote:
Mr. Crow has spoken a truth and done so courageously...Federal statistics show that men are abused almost as often as are women. Federal statistics show that women abuse children far more often than do men. For too long, falsely placed allegations of abuse have become epidemic, especially around the anticipation of divorce proceedings. Part of the reason for this is that often due process is lacking. Orders can be entered without the presence of the accused...Crow was wise to bring up a sordid but pertinent fact..."
Reporter Nate Giarnese can be reached at [email protected] [Note: We are not familiar with the details of the funding dispute involving Starting Point, and we take no position on the matter. However, we oppose Starting Point's supporters' vilification of Dickinson and their apparent refusal to discuss the very real issue of false allegations. We had originally planned to have supporters go to tonight's meeting in Conway, but have canceled this in light of the huge snow storm.]

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