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Letters to the EditorFlorida Helps Deadbeat Dads
Dear Mother Warriors,
I absolutely believe that government should kick in where they fail to collect our court-ordered child support. I can think of nothing else that would motivate states into working harder to either jail or collect from these deadbeat parents.
My ex-husband is living the high life in Florida, while being over $15,500 in arrears, and growing weekly. Despite the deadbeat parents punishment act (18 USC 228,) Florida is doing less than nothing to enforce this law to collect. This is FEDERAL LAW.
I believe wholly that my (and the kids') civil rights are ultimately violated inasmuch as Florida does not act on this law. My frustration is beyond belief. My budget is stretched to the max and can no longer stretch. WE NEED HELP DESPERATELY.
Just to inform you I found an error in your article “Feds Label Estrogen as Known Carcinogen.” It states that progesterone is taken along with estrogen as birth control. I’m afraid this is incorrect. If it were true many more people, including myself, would be taking such birth control products.
The hormone used in birth control products is PROGESTIN, an entirely synthetic version of progesterone. It bears none of the natural benefits of progesterone And many people believe it is almost as bad for you as the synthetic estrogens accompanying it.
ProgesterONE is truly beneficial to any hormonally imbalanced system as it is a natural hormone regulator. But it is not found in either birth control products or menopause related / HRT products. The only true progesterone products I have come across are yam extract creams (which are often a little hard for the body to absorb) or the 'serenity for women' cream. (It is a soy derivative.)
No, your doctor won’t tell you this. He/she is paid by pharmaceutical companies to provide you with products containing progestin. Hoping this has been of use.
Welfare Laws Force Moms to Return to Violent Partners
I am a single mom, and am very overwhelmed and discouraged. I have 4 children and left an abusive marriage over three years ago. I have been in school and working part time.
As soon as I got my first pay check, my foodstamps went from $280 a month to $56. And my check was only $270 for two weeks. I recently stopped getting child support which is $781 a month. He simply decided not to pay. Now I am behind on all of my utilities and am going to the church for a food box every other week.
Even if I worked full time, I could not support my family. Is it any wonder why women return to abuse? I won’t. I did that for 12 years. I am trying everything I know to do, even little jobs on the side. I will support your action in any way I can please let me know if I can be of any help.
Might Makes Right?
Thanks for the Mother Warriors Voice. It is great seeing all the good people are doing to help others in need.
Freedom of speech is one of the rights that everyone in the world has by virtue of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This right means that anyone may speak out without being punished for doing so. In our country, we see this right being infringed upon. We have had our anti-war signs taken from us and thrown into the streets. Some folks seem to be saying we had no right to speak out against war and the government that initiated it.
We are a country that is becoming more and more violent towards those who wish to speak their minds. We are a country that believes might makes right. It believes that only those with privilege and wealth should have a voice in what the public is permitted to see, hear and do.
One person told me that it is our Christian obligation to obey our president and go to war. My question to that person is “Was it a Christian obligation for the German soldiers and citizens to follow Hitler and murder six million Jews?” Were not the early Christians persecuted and killed when they refused to follow the Roman government? Does our Christian duty forbid us to speak out against the powers-that-be? If so, then how long will it take for our other freedoms to be snatched from us in the name of Christ?
Eagle Falls, WI
Thunderous applause for Hawaiians
Wild and thunderous applause and a lengthy standing ovation to the Hawaiian families! Congratulations to them for forming their own group, Stand for the Children, patterned after Mothers of the Disappeared based in Portland, Maine.
And bless the Voice for being the only voice that dares to expose the chilling truth about government child theft rackets. These professional rackets victimize the poor, minority, mentally disabled, single mothers, and anyone else unfortunate enough to be caught by the greedy, power-hungry, evil forces behind the façade! The devil is alive and flourishing. He is playing mind and word games with the innocent and unsuspecting—and then fleecing the flock while devouring the children whole!
Long time Welfare Warrior Teresa Nix fought the system valiantly, and had stunning victories, a role model for all those struggling with the CPS beast. She played hardball with the bigwigs and exposed the cowards for what they were. And she won some battles for mothers everywhere. She is sorely missed.
Please consider the power these henchmen have—it’s insidious. Most of us have a hard time believing it’s true. Forget about looking it in the eye and not flinching!
We need a chapter of Mothers of the Disappeared in every city, every state, everyplace where children live—especially among the low-income or ethnic regions. And we should all hope, pray, believe, strive for and do whatever it takes to keep mothers with their children.
My condolences to the relatives of the missing. The pain must be excruciating. A lesson or two in the ways of psychopaths—ever a pleasant subject—should be standard for all children. How to spot the mind-games, the power-hungry, the unholy in the place of the holy, the child stalkers. These people hold nothing sacred. They send cold chills down your back and start your skin crawling. When they start talking your stomach starts turning. Their motives are often very clear and they can be very bold. We must NEVER doubt what we see, even if it’s late in the game. It’s never too late!
Cheers for the reunion of Paul and Rene Patnode of Hawaii! May all the years the locusts have eaten be restored a thousand times over. And may the son become a champion of all the others like him. And may the Voice reorganize and reevaluate, to become a sharper, more effective fighting weapon! A cleaner format, a few regular columns, a catchy logo, etc…let’s rock the country with the creative mother intelligence and loving excellence of women everywhere.
Let our enemies feel the earth shake when we are around! I have a million ideas to share with my extended sisterhood of Mother Warriors—God protect you all…keep up the fight!
Grants Pass, OR
Facing the Worst to Win
This is in response to Willie Mae Gathers of Milwaukee, WI, who is sitting in jail on a $10,000 bond for three counts of child interference…attempting to be with her own children. She suffered from depression and a chemical dependency…and a “husband” who fed her and her children whole to the infamous foster-care system. She asks for any words of help!
We all get depressed and look for a comfort and escape. The inability to deal with circumstances breaks your hears and causes negative feelings. It makes the drugs look pretty good. It is like a wounded man needing a pair of crutches…how’s he supposed to get around without them? When your leg is broken…your choices are few.
Depression is having to face the worst…despite not being ready. This could be a rotten spouse or corrupt foster care system. They say depression is simply anger internalized. It’s a fact. And this is from a fellow sufferer who’s been bi-polar II for 35-plus years.
Despite sitting in jail, you can beat this, Willie Mae. Keep fighting to get those kids back. Face the dark forces and win! The tide can turn right around with you in front. All your present troubles could dissolve. Once you beat the chronic depression, the drug issues will disappear. Happy people don’t want chemical dependencies!
The problem could have begun with your own childhood. The effects could have devastated your ability to hold up under big pressures…and aren’t they just waiting to put us in the pressure cooker! The stress of life hits and whammo—we’re sunk.
Dealing with everyday issues brings out all the old conditioning—all those things we do in a knee-jerk reactionary way. And seeing ourselves helpless isn’t fun, pleasant, or even seemingly helpful! But take courage, we all have to burn in the fire of internal cleansing.
I say face all your weaknesses like the warrior you are and cleanse your soul…do it for your kids’ sake. Forgive your enemies and become noble inside…even if you have to fake it to start the process. It’s not a disgrace to look sin in the face…and overcome it with grace. You can do it Willie Mae!
I’ve been bi-polar II for almost four decades. I have taken all the abuse dealt out to those like me. I spent my childhood in institutions being eaten alive by its wolves. I hated God, hated myself, hated life…until I had my first baby, who is now an adult. It gave me new hope. Despite being bi-polar II I have survived without being ruined by the system…and I won’t put my kids in their hands to destroy. Keep us posted and let us all celebrate even the smallest victory with you. Milwaukee is a hotbed of creative energies. When you get out join the flow so you won’t be harmed ever again.
Grants Pass, OR
Love from Maine
Hello Welfare Warriors!
We are so grateful to all of you Welfare Warriors. You inspire us and give us hope. Bless you all.
Thanks so much for all your great work and your dedication to justice for all of us! Much love from your friends in Maine, and all of us from POWER.
Jesse Leah Vear
Tragic Death from Poverty
I wish that I could say that it was a nice holiday, but it wasn’t. My precious sister Josie died of numerous illnesses because of having no insurance or treatment. She was 56 years old, and worked at a gas station. Her daughter and four little grandsons lived with her and her partner. She had one of the most tragic lives you could ever imagine.
I’d like to do an article in memory of someone who died long before her time. Someone who always tried to pay the bills, and always came up shy of having enough money. I’ll grieve for her until the day I die.
We’re Native American. I know we have the shortest life span. But no one should die of something that can be treated if you have money or insurance.
I’m on SSI, but I want you to have this $15 to put towards helping other women.
Looking for Moms in Maine
I am a long-time Maine welfare mother. I am a former member many years ago of the National Welfare Rights Organization. This totally dates me. I was at one time the welfare advocate for Penobscot County. I would (even though I don’t live in Wisconsin) like to become a fellow “Welfare Warrior” even if only as an auxiliary member.
I wish to start another welfare rights group in this state. And being a member of a current welfare rights group would be a help in this.
Can I join your group as an auxiliary member? Are there dues? Please write me back. I am very serious about wanting to teach welfare rights again.
Ed. Responds: You can become a member by subscribing to the Voice for $5-$50. Pay what you can afford. If you want to distribute a bundle of the Voice in your area, we will send them to you for free or whatever you can afford. We can also send you a MOMS ORGANIZING HANDBOOK to help you start up a group in your area. The book costs $5 - $18.
Uncomfortable with Complicity
Dear Mother Warriors,
I have enclosed $100 for another 200 copies of your fall 2004 issue.
I am distributing so many copies because publicity of what was done to me has been my best defense from those who would like to destroy me (if not kill me) because I make them uncomfortable with their complicity. And what happened to me continues to be done to others,
There are those who tell a person to forget the past, with meditation and other mind relaxation. And there are the religious people who always say to give your problems to Christ. They don’t have time to listen to you, but Christ does.
The only Christian exceptions I have found are the Maryknoll missionaries, who are trying to close the School of Assassins. (See soaw.org to get involved.) These “militant extremists,” as the DOE calls them, actually believe the best way to emotionally help a grieving person is to listen to them. Christianity is a great religion—the problem is finding someone who practices it.
Paul J. Patnode (el Nica)
Voice Gives Tremendous Psychological Boost
Thank you so much for the copies of the winter issue. The Kilauea General Store in Volcano prominently displays both copies, and they go much faster there than in Volcano Ace Hardware Store. Volcano is an upper class, very conservative town. But some people there can accept the truth about this country.
It is difficult for me to express the tremendous psychological boost your last two issues have given me, since the loss of my son in 1984. At that time I took a chance on my life, by going to trial rather than be freed by pleading guilty of sodomizing my 2-year-old son. I wanted to be sure he could never question my innocence.
I lived in the most horrible conditions for a year in jail. I was sustained only by the hope of seeing my son, should I survive. Finally, a jury found me innocent, only to be told by CPS that now I had to prove my innocence to them-- if I hoped to see my son again.
What was it like to instantly go from being a respected Electrical Engineering professor to being treated like the most loathsome creature? How did it feel when officials could do whatever they pleased to me, as a result of being charged of a crime I never could has conceived as possible!
Add in the fact that what I was accused of was physically impossible, with no damage or awareness by my son. Yet every relative and acquaintance thought it was possible. And they no longer wanted to associate with me. If someone can find a way to blame me, they can feel comfortable with their inability to show empathy.
Upon being freed from jail, I felt like someone being attacked by a shark who must quickly hide their wounds. Or others will move in for the kill.
Finally, years later, upon locating my son at Stanford University, his response was that it didn’t matter if I was innocent or guilty. All that mattered was that I was accused.
It took many years for me to cope with the fact that there is no relation between logic and formal education, as Hitler was aware. By going to Nicaragua I finally realized that only Americans are taught such unquestioning faith in their government. The Department of Education will try to make people feel that whatever happens to them is their fault.
It took the loss of my family a second time for me to go for broke. I began to demand the respect (dignity) I constantly looked for, via fliers, speaking on public TV, and solitary demonstrations. But I never found empathy for what was done to my son and me. Everyone said, instead, that I was damaging myself by not being able to put the past behind me. This is an impossibility if I cannot speak about it.
Now, for the first time, via your publication in various outlets, people can see I’m not alone. I no longer need to go into lengthy details, later learning that who I’m talking to is only cross-examining me to find a way to blame me for everything. I can now hand any acquaintance a copy of your last two issues. And I can walk away, leaving them to ponder the issues by themselves. If later they remain friendly, I’ve made my point.
The only way to get a politician to do anything for the poor is by constant, in their face, demanding justice, at political meetings, their homes, etc.—not by voting.
Paul J. Patnode
Stop Bill Collecting Calls
Here is a sample letter that anyone may send to any bill collector to end all of their phone calls to you. (From Personal Finance for Seniors, FC&A Publications, 103 Clover Green, Peachtree City, GA 30269. In my opinion, this book is not just for seniors.)
Name of contact person, if you have one
Company street address
Company city, state and zip code
Dear (contact person) or To Whom it May Concern:
(Company name) has contacted me regarding a debt you say I owe to (name of original lender). I do not want you to call me again regarding this debt.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, a federal law, says you may now contact me only to say there will be no further contact, or to notify me that you or the creditor intends to take some specific action.
(Your account number, if applicable)
So the next time your life is interrupted by a debt collector, remember to ask the caller to hang on. Grab a pen and write the caller’s name, firm name, city, state and zip code. Then send the bill collector the preceding letter, immediately.
Receiving your letter, the bill collector may decide to immediately sue you. In fact, some collection agencies, (i.e., law firms) call you and have hired process servers to try to serve you.
Although you will still owe the money, you just won’t get telephone calls that may disturb your life. Without this letter, debt collectors may call you anytime between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m., local time.
Fighting for Justice in Juvenile Courts
We the Parents
We are a group of parents who are
Fighting for our rights and our children’s rights.
We are NOT fighting for the rights of the
We are fighting for our rights, for innocent parents and children,
For what the juvenile courts system
took from us.
We are fighting for the rights of the elderly,
And the disabled and the unemployed parents
Who need the welfare system.
We the parents do not need our rights and our children taken away.
We need laws to be changed, and we need the welfare system to help those in need.
Children of today and children of tomorrow,
Children are minors and are innocent.
Children have no say in law.
Children must go where they are placed.
Children of yesterday and today, need not
Be taken from their innocent families.
Reunification Plan is a law.
Reunification Plan is a guilty plea.
Reunification Plan is an entrapment.
Reunification Plan is where the mother loses her right to her children.
Reunification Plan violates our privacy.
Reunification Plan should be deemed illegal to unaware women.
Reunification Plan is a Reunification Plan in the juvenile courts system, for mothers to reunite with their children.
Reunification Plan is a?
Now you tell me what the Reunification Plan is?
Editor’s note: Different states use different language to trick moms into losing custody of their children. In California when a parent agrees to the “reunification plan,” they unknowingly agree to the accusations of “abuse and neglect”! In Wisconsin, when a mom “accepts the court’s jurisdiction,” they unknowingly agree to the charges of abuse and neglect and unknowingly give up their right to a jury trial!
Once the parent agrees to a “reunification plan” (or the “court’s jurisdiction”), they can NOT regain custody of their babies until they meet an endless list of conditions. Most of the “conditions” enrich professionals. (Parenting classes, therapy, anger management, psychological evaluation, etc.)
Social worker, social worker, my my
They think they do a good job but yet they do not.
Social worker, social worker, what a
Way to serve, always prying in peoples’ lives.
Social worker, social worker, when will they learn?
When the law tells them.
That’s when they will learn.
Gloria Guerra, known as Mother’s Friend
PO Box 1212; Alameda, CA 94501
(516) 839-2004; (510) 496-6000 ext. 110
You Are Not in My Shoes
Feelings about judges that do not care for the best interest of parents. They do not allow parents to have a voice regarding their children.
One wonders if this is the way people in this day and age should be treated. Should people be treated with no injustice in one’s life? Be treated badly and abused by County officials? Most people in the United States are not aware that the government we trust the most can steal our children. Everyday children are taken away from families that may be innocent. The system needs a balance. We are being treated as if we were a number.
I came across a sign saying, “Do you want to be a foster parent?” They are taking many children and giving them away. There is no real protection in this whole destruction of family and children by placing our children in the hands of the government. I see this desperate system begging the public to become foster parents. Children are being placed out of their homes and raised by another person taking the place of a parent.
Is this the way it is supposed to be because one is single with no husband, or is poor and uneducated? Why is this system so cruel to moms? Do they hate women in general because of having babies with no partners? Why do people pretend that they care about our feelings, yet behind our backs they are laughing at us? They laugh at us for being so foolish and not understanding what has happened to us and our children.
I remember my children, all the good times with them, and the enjoyment I had with them. I go back in time remembering them, walking with my children to school, fixing them their breakfast and getting them ready for the day. Remembering when I sat in the park, watching them play.
Those days are a memory only. Now I remember the pain of someone ripping my children out of my life, and taking the pleasure of being a mother away from me. I know what it feels like when that gift was stolen by the system, when they gave the pleasure and enjoyment of my children to someone else.
Parents and children lose out once the children are taken into the foster care system. No judge will ever understand unless they have walked in another’s shoes, unless they have felt the pain of losing their children, of being hurt and alone. Losing one’s children and watching them grow up in another person’s home is a nightmare. No one will understand unless they have lived with that pain. To not allow a parent to have a voice is a serious form of abuse.
Judges think they know what is best for our children. But judges often destroy a good family by not allowing a parent to have a voice.
Gloria Guerra, known as Mother’s Friend
P.S. I am currently fighting for my rights to have a voice in the Superior Court of California, County of Alameda, at Oakland. My case number is RGO 3123080.
AFDC Was Better
Dear Welfare Warriors,
I have been living in Wisconsin for 49 years. I went to the Milwaukee public schools and I finished my last year. I was a mother at the age of 16. Didn’t know anything about raising children. But God put this lady in my life to show me how to take care of my business, which I do mean is take care of my children.
Yes I was on welfare for the help that I did need to really take care of my family. But I never really depended on the welfare for everything. At that time I was working and taking care of my family.
Back in the 1970s up to 1985 the welfare would help families who didn’t have anywhere to stay. Plus they would help you with clothes and furniture for those families who were in need. The caseworker was more helpful toward you and your family’s needs. There were some caseworkers who would even provide benefits with no smart remarks behind your situation.
When it was AFDC things were a little better. If you were sanctioned, your caseworker would give you time to get your papers together for the next month so you could get your check. There were not so many people and families who were completely homeless during that time.
Now when you drive down the streets, what do you see? A lot of houses that are not being used for people and families because the rent is so high. Now many families can’t afford to pay any kind of rent.
They say that Milwaukee has jobs for people. Please show me, because I have been out of work since 2002. Now you know it has gotten real bad because I’m a licensed Ceritfied Nursing Assistant. But I can’t get that kind of job because my back and my legs give me so much pain. The doctors have told me that I will never be able to work in a nursing home ever again. If I pick up anything that weighs over five pounds, I will be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life.
But each time that I file for my Disability with the Social Security office, they always deny me the benefits. Now I have to try to get my Disability since 1992 and we are in the year of 2005. I don’t know what else to do about this situation. So just maybe you can tell me how to get some kind of help and some assistance.
I lost my husband on Sept. 29, 2004. I was forced to move out of my apartment which me and my husband shared. We were never behind in our rent at all. I don’t have any income coming into the home and had to move in with relatives. The only income that I do have is food stamps. I am seriously depressed. What can I do?
P.S. Bring the old AFDC back so people can have a home for their families and children. W-2 is not working for their families and children. Help them. Don’t hurt the kids.
Editor’s Response: Your doctors are failing you. To get Social Security, your doctors must tell them that your are 100% disabled and that your disability will last at least one year. Perhaps you should shop for a better doc. And be sure to see a psychiatrist if you are suffering from depression. It is often easier to get a psychiatrist to declare you disabled than to get a physical doctor to judge you disabled.
Food Stamps on the Chopping Block
The President wants Congress to eliminate foodstamps for many employed families. Under the Administration’s proposed plan, households with gross income above 130% of poverty, would not be eligible. The gross income is before any taxes are taken out of a paycheck or any of the household’s expenses are considered.
Household Size Gross weekly income if cuts are approved
Add $84 weekly for each additional person.
Contact your Senator (202-224-3121) and Congressperson (202-225-3121) if you disagree with these cuts. Tell them to stop the attacks on US families.
Info from Oakland County Welfare Rights Organization
132 Franklin Blvd, Pontiac, MI
(248) 334-8117; FAX (248) 474-4029
Choosing Electricity without Nuclear Waste
Until very recently we have had no choice of who supplied our electricity in the Charlottesville area. Now we can choose Pepco PowerChoice. They sell three “green energy” packages for your electricity consumption. I just switched to their 100% renewables package. I feel better knowing we’ll be supporting solar, wind and geothermal.
A recent AP news story confirmed again that Dominion Power is committed to going the wrong way in electrical generation: coal and nuclear. They are pushing hard to build the first new nuclear reactors in the US in 30 years.
A rep of Dominion’s Public Relations office was not interested in selling me Green Power. Online I found. I got a year contract for 7.99 cents per kilowatt hour. Dominion does the billing. And they fix your lines (they own them).
I have to watch that PEPCO does not inflate the price at the end of one year. I can always switch back. The price is higher than our current electricity rate of 7.07 cents. But we don’t use much electricity in my house. And if enough of us switch, maybe Dominion will get the picture.
World Marks Anti-Homophobia Day
Protests, rallies and celebrations were held across the globe on May 17 as lesbian and gay communities recognized the first International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO). Hong Kong hosted its first rally against homophobia on May 16. But most events took place on May 17, the anniversary of homosexuality being removed from the World Health Organization’s list of mental disorders.
In Latvia, a hot-air balloon displayed an anti-homophobia message. It was expected to travel across the country. Bulgaria hosted an Equality Walk in the capital, Sofia. In Sri Lanka, a major human rights publication was published to coincide with the day. The president of the European Parliament issued a statement of support for IDAHO. He declared that homophobia remains a “serious problem” in Europe.
Gay bars in London maintained a minute’s silence. Meanwhile protests outside the Saudi Arabian embassy in London called for the release of gay men sentenced to prison and flogging for attending a gay wedding.
Organizers hope that an international unified presence will help combat anti-gay sentiment, particularly in countries where sexual minorities are punished with imprisonment or even death. UK organizer Derek Lennard stated, “It’s the first time countries around the world have shown support for gay rights. I think the important thing is that even in countries where it would be dangerous to show support, people have come out and done so. Gay rights are human rights and we demand they are recognized as such.
Organizers later presented a petition to the UN calling for more recognition of homophobia.
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