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Fathers and Families

Outrageous Media Bias in Armstrong Triple Murder Case; AZ Gov. Signs F & F-Inspired Child Custody Bill
May 3, 2011
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F & F’s Holstein Criticizes Outrageous Media Bias in Armstrong Triple Murder Case on Nationally-Syndicated Lars Larson Show (Audio Available)

Lars LarsonFathers and Families Board Chair Ned Holstein, MD, MS criticized the anti-father bias in the media coverage surrounding the Lashanda Armstrong triple murder on the nationally-syndicated Lars Larson Show on Friday, April 29. According to Talkers Magazine, Larson has an audience of 2.25 million listeners, and his show is heard on over 200 stations nationwide.

Lashanda Armstrong is the New York woman who drove herself and her four children into the Hudson River, killing herself and three of the kids.  The oldest child, who managed to get free, said his mother held the other children down as the car sank.

According to Holstein:
In a familiar pattern, the mainstream media’s reporting of the Lashanda Armstrong triple murder is drenched in gender bias. The media immediately cast sympathy on Armstrong and blame on Jean Pierre, the separated young father of the three dead children.

The gender bias is so pervasive that the Associated Press felt it necessary to generously allow that “whatever [Pierre's] faults, it’s wrong to blame the tragedy entirely on the father.” Entirely? One wonders who it was who drove the car into the Hudson River.

Were Pierre a mother, not a father, despite her blemishes she would receive enormous sympathy as the parent of murdered children. Somehow Pierre, because he’s a father, is not entitled to the same consideration. He was even vilified because he wanted to hold a separate funeral and burial for his children, rather than the joint service the murderess’ family had planned. Yet who would want to mourn for their dead children at the same service held for their killer?
To listen to the audio of Holstein's interview, click here.

F & F Writes Op-Ed for Las Vegas Review-Journal in Support of NV AB 313, SB 284

Las Vegas Review-JournalIn Protecting parents who serve (Las Vegas Review-Journal, 5/1/11), Fathers and Families Executive Director Glenn Sacks lays out the case for AB 313 and SB 284, bills to address many of the problems faced by Nevada’s active duty and reserve service members.

The bills, sponsored by Assemblywoman Irene Bustamante Adams, D-Las Vegas, and Senator Don Gustavson, R-Sparks, are modeled in part on AB 2416, which we helped pass in California last year. F & F worked with a Department of Defense Liaisons Office legislative representative on the bills prior to their introduction.

To comment on the piece, click here.

In the Review-Journal, Sacks writes:
There are six central reforms which advocates for military parents have been working to implement legislatively since 2005:  prohibiting permanent custody orders for deployed parents; making temporary orders revert back after deployment; prohibiting deployment from being used as a factor in custody determination; allowing guardianship or visitation to be delegated when appropriate; holding expedited and/or electronic hearings for deployed parents; and extending military parent protections to National Guard and Reserves. AB313 and SB284 achieve all six of these objectives.

Since 2005, more than three dozen states have passed military parent child custody legislation. Nevada is not one of them.

No mother or father should ever be disadvantaged in a child custody or family court proceeding because they serve. With America fighting two wars and the divorce rate among military families running high, Nevada’s service members need AB313 and SB284.
 Read Sacks’ full piece here.

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Legislative Update
Victory! AZ Gov. Signs F & F-Inspired Child Custody Bill

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has signed SB 1283, a bill to protect the child custody rights of deployed servicemembers.

Fathers and Families and Major Mark Beres, USAF (ret) of the American Retirees Association have worked with the Department of Defense on SB 1283. Like Nevada's AB313 and SB284, SB 1283 is based on AB 2416, which we helped pass in California in 2010.

Last year Brewer signed  HB 2348, a bill to protect disabled veterans from family court financial abuses. HB 2348 was based largely on SB 285, which F & F helped pass in California in 2009.

What's Happening
Radio Host Gives Impassioned Indictment of Family Court System, Praises F & F (Audio Available)  

Curtis Wright

“[My children and I] shared a life together that the prejudiced court did not want us to share.”–Radio host Curtis Wright

North Carolina radio host Curtis Wright, a longtime friend and supporter of Fathers and Families, recently hosted F & F Board Member Robert Franklin, Esq. on The Curtis Wright Show. Wright began the show with a devastating critique of the family court system, declaring “I am a single father…I [am] a survivor of the legal system.” Read more

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