Archive: How the false claims of the child abuse industry have harmed america
- Category: Foster care research
- Written by John Knight - FatherMag.com
Those who profit from the Child Abuse Industry must convince both us and their victims that everything is abuse. News media, therapists, prosecutors, judges, lawyers and sex police. Thousands of jobs depend on maximizing claims of abuse.
The Heritage Foundation estimates that welfare costs US taxpayers $360 billion per year, and it is now clear that this underwrites a large portion of the high US divorce rate -- the highest in the world -- and one of the highest illegitimacy rates. The Coalition of Parents estimates that the child abuse industry costs US taxpayers $285 billion per year. This is a case in which the medicine did more damage than the disease -- more children were damaged by their resulting fatherlessness than were protected by these efforts. "Child support" may be only $14 billion per year, but the psychological effects on family dynamics contribute more to family breakup than just the dollar incentives would imply.
Thus about 41% of the $1.6 Trillion national budget is wasted on programs which do little other than to undermine family unity, with terrible consequences. As the following ROFF (Rate of Fatherlessness Factor) suggests, for each $12.5 billion increase in the last 3 decades in the annual expenditure for welfare, the rate of fatherlessness rose 1%, and for each 1% increase in the rate of fatherlessness SAT scores declined 3 points, and the prison population increased by 41,296 inmates.
It seems that the cure is worse than the disease.
In child abuse, each child taken into custody by government is "worth" between $150,000 and $300,000 in federal funds to a state or county agency, providing a huge incentive for social workers to cut corners and ignore the consequences of their actions. So they do this to increase their own job security.
In an absurd allocation of power, social workers have been given legal immunity and presently cannot be held legally accountable for their mistakes. These people act as agents of the government, and in a democracy, no government agent is allowed power without accountability. These legal gods have been allowed unparalleled leeway in rampaging over parents' rights, and they often totally ignore the rights of the children they are supposed to be protecting.
Any parent who challenges them is threatened by the removal of their own children under the most bizarre charges. And children who are removed are used as hostages to negotiate even more bizarre terms.
The impact of unsubstantiated charges alone on families' finances and morale may cost more than the hundreds of billions of direct federal expenditure. Funded through more than 300 federal programs, the child abuse industry costs the taxpayer more each year than national defense. The Mondale Act of 1973 made this business a growth industry, increasing child abuse reports more than 4 fold to 2.9 million per year, and increasing unfounded sexual abuse reports more than 28 fold to 210,460. It is counterintuitive and plain un-American to charge 3 times as many parents of an unsubstantiated, financially and emotionally devastating crime, as those accused of "substantiated" charges. The population increased by 19% and the rate of fatherlessness increased considerably during this time, but could this alone account for an overall 166% increase in substantiated charges?
A quick estimate of the number of children murdered each year provides a bit of a beacon into this shady area. The Department of Justice estimates that 2,475 children were murdered last year. In every war the US has fought the ratio of wounded:killed is a fairly constant 3:1. Applying the same logic to this war on families and fatherhood, we would have expected 7,425 "wounded" children, rather than the 1,194,460 actual cases of "substantiated" child abuse. Is it reasonable to believe that the real wounded:killed ratio is 483:1 just because highly funded, under trained, unregulated social workers say so? What percent of these charges of child abuse cross the line between child discipline and actual abuse, particularly when a 10 year old boy today who is told to do his homework is more likely to reply "I'll call 911 if you do that," rather than "OK."
If the education system had improved during this time, the managers of the child abuse industry could argue that such overkill is worth an extra $285 billion per year. But this muddling of the distinction between student discipline and child abuse in the last 3 decades led to SAT scores plummeting 77 points, and the US Department of Education reports that in international math competition the US is almost at the bottom of the list, with only Jordan lower, and in language only Poland is lower. The success of the child abuse industry in breaking up families, and in lowering child discipline in intact families, must be considered when calculating its overall impact, and must be called to account.
What is abuse today? The Burbank City Council defines spousal abuse as "giving the woman the silent treatment" in an official government publication. And in a recent forum on Intimate Violence sponsored by Dr. Richard Gelles, which included the very social workers who are responsible for identifying and filing abuse charges, merely pointing out to them that mothers are reported by the Department of Justice to be 55% of the perpetrators of child murders resulted in their almost immediate unanimous consensus that:
"The male lobby is really a batterers lobby. It's really a rapists lobby. It's really a child sexual abusers lobby. It's trying to make everyone believe that it's advocating for men, but it's really advocating for batterers and rapists -- allowing them to continue, condoning their violence. It's trying to divert attention from the victimization of women and children so that the batterers and rapists can continue to get away with controlling, abusing and hurting women and children."
"This new -- or continuing -- assailants' lobby is still trying to do the same thing -- discredit the shelters and battered women's movement by calling them anti-male. (They still calls us lesbian.) In this way, they can continue to batter and rape their partners -- and once again, there will be no help."
The entire transcript of this forum is available for your perusal, and in it you will find not a single "male lobbyist" [their term] who advocated any act of violence, or in fact made any anti-female comment.
If this is their response to someone who even questions their view that "men commit 95% of abuse," when merely presented with the facts as represented by statistics collected by the Department of Justice, then how objective could they possibly be in analyzing "child abuse"?
If a father questions their statistics while they have custody of his children, how WOULD they react?
How responsible is it for society to entrust its children with such emotional "public servants" who are motivated by a $153,000 stipend for every child they remove from a family, and not by the welfare of that child?
These are the people who are now making life and death decisions for your children.
Consider what the experts say -- Ralph Underwager & Hollida Wakefield, authors of The Return of the Furies wrote:
On page 63 of The Return of the Furies we state: "There are numerous reports [in the literature] indicating that many people perceive their childhood sexual experiences with adults as neutral and even that some people report they were positive." [We then list 19 such references]
They go on to say:
Even though the data seem to suggest otherwise, we maintain that sexual abuse is always harmful, though it may not be recognized as such by the individual and though there may be no obvious psychological effects. To say that it is always harmful is not the same thing as saying it is necessarily traumatic. But we do not believe sexual contact between an adult and a child can be acceptable or positive. We wrote in our 1988 book, Accusations of Child Sexual Abuse: "We do not agree that the effects of childhood sexual experiences with older partners are ever likely to be positive, as is sometimes claimed. Rather, the effects are apt to range from neutral to seriously damaging." We have regularly dealt with sexual abuse and have never approved a sexual offender's behaviors or said that sexual contact between an adult and a child can be beneficial. ("Furies," pp 63-64). We go on in the next three pages to explain our reasons for maintaining that sexual contact between adults and children can never be positive.
It should be noted that a polite request for clarification of these data sources was met first by grandstanding touched with sarcasm, a subtle suggestion to essentially drop the question, followed by the list administrator banning any further posts from us to this listserve.
1) You have 19 references which say it was neutral or positive? How many which say it was harmful?
2) "Even though the data seem to suggest otherwise, we maintain that sexual abuse is always harmful." Even though the subjects themselves disagreed with you?
3) "it may not be recognized as such by the individual and though there may be no obvious psychological effects." If there are no "obvious" psychological effects, then what do you perceive as the harm?
4) "We do not agree that the effects of childhood sexual experiences with older partners are ever likely to be positive, as is sometimes claimed." What is the basis for this giant leap of faith? Not the literature. Not the subjects themselves. Not the "obvious" psychological effects. What?
Wow. At what point do you "feel" you abandoned science and switched to sorcery? Do you have any statistical summaries of these cases summarized by "neutral," "positive," and "seriously damaging," or does this get too close to science for your comfort?
If you do have them, I respectfully request that you post them, or their cites.
Now we are being criticized for saying that child sexual contact is harmful!!!
Who would have believed it?
For those who are interested in our reasoning on this, please send your snail-mail address and we will send you the relevant pages from our book.
Apparently you did not understand the question, so please allow me to restate it.
WHAT DATA DO YOU HAVE TO SUPPORT YOUR CONCLUSION?
This is not a "criticism." This is not a statement of my opinion, nor that of anyone else's. This is not an analysis of your methodology. This is not even to be construed as questioning your source of data. You do not need to draw any conclusions from this simple request, nor do you need to grandstand in order to avoid answering the question.
This is an objective inquiry regarding your objective data above which YOU yourself originally posted. Nothing more, nothing less. If you fail to answer the question, it is only YOUR own data which goes unsupported.
I trust that you will send the "relevant part of your book by snail mail" if requested. But is there any reason you can't express in your own words for the benefit of this forum WHAT your data is, and how and/or why it conflicts with your above conclusions?
This question was never answered, and the list administrator failed to post the question, providing the following "explanation" instead:
That doesn't suggest that this forum is interested in the "open discussion" which they claim to be, and it doesn't provide much information on how to measure the long term benefits of preventing some forms of child abuse. If the subjects themselves don't know they were harmed, if there are no "obvious psychological effects," and if social workers and psychologists have to work that hard to convince the subjects that they were harmed, or that they do have adverse psychological effects, then what is gained? But let's give them the benefit of the doubt and make a grand gesture for these hard working public servants by assuming that they increased the annual incomes of each of those substantiated child abuse subjects by $10,000 per year. This would make the total benefit to society 1,194,460 subjects times $10,000 each, or about $12 billion.
That makes the cost/benefit of spending $285 billion to gain an almost inconceivable $12 billion an unacceptable 23:1.
The number of cases INCREASED after the Mondale Act was passed. Can we assume that the number of substantiated cases of child abuse would have increased even more WITHOUT this $285 billion expenditure? Would the number of cases have increased by 200% instead of only 166% -- which is 151,490 more cases? It would be inconceivable to suggest that, but if so, what was the benefit to society of spending almost $2 million each to prevent a case of child abuse, and how does that balance with the damage done?
While these victimization groups are destroying families and bashing fathers in "the best interests of the children," children are being severely disadvantaged by being removed from their fathers' care, and we know it. It does not take a raft of statistics to know this, but consider what the statistics show:
Juveniles committed to juvenile prisons (Texas):
- 1% are from single father homes
- 20% are from 2-parent homes
- 79% are from fatherless homes
At the time they were growing up, single father homes constituted 4% of households, single mother homes 37%, and two parent homes 59%. This illustrates that the children of single mother households were 8.5 times more likely to end up in juvenile prisons than children of single father households, and the children of single father households were 35% LESS likely than the children of two parent households to end up in juvenile prisons.
The vital importance to society of children living with their fathers goes beyond instilling the morality and discipline necessary to keep them from going to prison. It affects every aspect of their lives.
- 85% of all children that exhibit behavioral disorders come from fatherless homes.
- 90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes.
- 71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes.
- 75% of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes.
- 63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes.
- 80% of rapists motivated with displaced anger come from fatherless homes.
- 70% of juveniles in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes.
- 85% of all youths sitting in prisons grew up in a fatherless home.
- California has the nation's highest juvenile incarceration rate and the nation's highest juvenile unemployment rate.
- Juveniles have become the driving force behind the national increase in violent crime; the epidemic of youth violence and gangs is related to the breakdown of the two-parent family.
- 71% of teenage pregnancies are to children of single parents. Daughters of single parents are 2.1 times more likely to have children during their teenage years than are daughters from intact families. Daughters of single parents are 53% more likely to marry as teenagers, 164% more likely to have a premarital birth, and 92% more likely to dissolve their own marriages. All these intergenerational consequences of single motherhood increase the likelihood of chronic welfare dependency.
- In 1983, a study found that 60% of perpetrators of child abuse were women with sole custody. Shared parenting can significantly reduce the stress associated with sole custody, and reduce the isolation of children in abusive situations by allowing both parents' to monitor the children's health and welfare and to protect them.
- 18 million children live in single-parent homes. Nearly 75% of American children living in single-parent families will experience poverty before they turn 11. Only 20% in two-parent families will experience poverty.
- The feminization of poverty is linked to the feminization of custody, as well as linked to lower earnings for women. Greater opportunity for education and jobs through shared parenting can help break the cycle.
- Kidnapping: family abductions were 163,200 compared to non-family abductions of 200 to 300, attributed to the parents' disenchantment with the legal system.
Reestablishing fatherhood is not just a minor issue to the Signatories to the Fathers' Manifesto. It is the only way to rid this world of its current social pathology, and they know it. Any and every plan for doing this must be presented and carefully scrutinized, regardless of its "political correctness." There is too much at stake to ignore any possible solution.
The Constitutional right to freedom of religion clearly requires the preservation of families -- and this requires strong fatherhood.
The ROF (rate of fatherlessness) between 1965 and 1995 increased by 27 percentage points, from 9% to 36%. Using the ROF as a unit of measure to characterize our progress or lack thereof provides a revealing peek into our social and economic pathology.
The first column is the quantity or percent in 1965, the second is for 1995, the third is the factor or percent by which that item changed, the fourth column is the increase or decrease in that factor for EACH percentage point increase in the rate of fatherlessness, and the fifth column is the total amount of that change in the units used.
Using "fatherlessness" as a standard, welfare spending increased $22.4 billion for EACH 1% increase in the rate of fatherlessness, giving it a Positive ROFF (Rate of Fatherlessness Factor) of $22.4 billion.
Similarly, the Dollar measured against the Japanese Yen has a Negative ROFF of 12 Yen, and GNP per US Worker has a Negative ROFF of $433, and SAT Scores have a Negative ROFF of 3 Points.
|CATEGORY||1965||1995||factor||ROFF||Amount of change|
|$ per oz. Gold||$34||$418||12.3X||$14.22||$384|
|Yen/$||400||80||5X||12 Yen||320 Yen|
|SAT Scores||984||902||-11%||3 Pts||82 Pts|
|Hrs/day children TV||4||7||+75%||7 Min||3 Hours|
|US % World Auto Market||60%||20%||-3X||1.5%||-40%|
|Child Abuse -- unsubstantiated||241K||2,490K||10.3X||83,294||2,249K|
|Child Abuse -- substantiated||449K||1,094K||2.44X||23,919||645,810|
|Illegitimate Teen Births||15%||69%||4.6X||2%||54%|
|Nat. Healthcare Costs||$52B||$884B||17X||$31B||$832B|
|Criminal Justice Employees||442K||1,825K||4.1X||51,222||1,383,000|
Copyright © 1996, 2008
FatherMag.com. All rights reserved.
Source : http://www.fathermag.com/9604/abuse_industry/