Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Legacy of Veronica’s Tears and Traumas

Those dedicated to family preservation, child welfare, human decency, morality, father's rights, Indian rights, and ethical adoption practices are shedding tears over the culmination of Dusten Brown’s long, brave and determined battle to simply be a Daddy to his beautiful daughter, Veronica. Still facing a lawsuit, extradition and charges of felony custodial interference, he has very sadly lost the battle for his beloved Veronica.

Veronica – the child whose years-long legal custodial battle riveted a nation – has just turned four. Having happily settled in to life with her devoted Daddy and a large, loving extended blood-related family – not to mention her Cherokee Tribe - Veronica is now being made to suffer their loss in her life while simultaneously having to get to know people she has totally forgotten.

In the final dissenting decision, Justice Noma Gurich wrote
“We cannot ignore the fact that (Veronica), at the age of 27 months, has already been moved from one set of ‘parents’ to another, after lengthy judicial consideration of her best interests… Under the issues present to this court, an immediate change of custody without any consideration of her best interests will require a four-year-old child to resolve her feelings of loss and grief for a second time.”

Dr. Naranjan Karnik, a specialist in child and adolescent psychiatry at Chicago’s Rush University, commenting on the final decision to disrupt veronica’s life yet again, spoke of the courts to consider her best interests at all. Dr. Philip Fisher, a psychologist specializing in childhood trauma at the University of Oregon, said the final change in custody at 4 years old could result in “traumatic changes can actually hamper development in the part of the brain that helps someone make good decisions.”
There are many issues yet to play out while this child adjusts to the insanity of a life that just may disprove the old adage that you can never have too many people love you!

Will there be visitation?  How can we anticipate such an arrangement to be
voluntarily carried out now when Matt and Melanie Capobianco who have already initiated a half million-dollar lawsuit against Dusten for their legal fees?

They have initiated a lawsuit to recoup their expenses in the drawn out legal battle they CHOSE to continue instead of doing the moral – albeit difficult - thing and ending it the day they learned that Veronica had a father who was duped and wanted custody of HIS DAUGHTER!  Every penny they spent from that point forward was of their own choosing and opposed to the best interest of the child they coveted. Both Dusten and the Capobiancos should sue Christie Maldonado for orchestrating the whole thing and for perpetrating FRAUD.

Will Veronica have had the opportunity to know her Daddy – to see and FEEL his love? To hear HIS side of the story? If they do allow visitation, what will this child think?  If not, in ten years, when teenaged Veronica is at a computer and enters her name into a search engine…. what will she think?

It is hard to imagine how the Capobiancos can spin this into something that makes sense to Veronica and justifies their actions.  After all, it's not like they can say your mommy and daddy died...or, "they" CHOSE us...or, we "rescued" from an awful life of abuse and neglect, poverty...  Yet, one must assume that they justify it to themselves every day, and have since the start.

Will they continue the vindictiveness that Christie Maldonado engineered, put it into motion with deceit, and kept it going for years out of sheer vengeance? Will Veronica spend the rest of her life being brow-beaten by Christie and the Capobaiancos to the point of not being able to decipher truth form lies; a classic Stockholm Syndrome victim? How else can they justify their actions but to deify Dusten?

Adoption reform, Indian nation, fathers rights, and family preservation Bloggers must keep the truth out there for her to find. We must revisit the truth every year on her September birthday by sharing her daddy's parting words with her.

The Broader Legacy and Implications of Veronica’s Traumas

The effect on the Indian Nation and their national sovereignty is loud, clear and palpable. This case set devastating precedent for the ICWA – all but gutting it entirely, rendering it another treaty trampled on by US courts. 

The effect on adoption practice and it’s continued war against family preservation – and most viciously, the war on fathers – has intensified.

“Once these agencies and lawyers get the birth mother on the hook ... they tell these birth moms not to answer any calls from the dads,” said Shannon Jones, the Charleston attorney who represents Simmons (Desaray’s dad and grandmother) and Brown. “Of course, then they argue the dad is a deadbeat.
“It usually wins the day.”

Adam Pertman, Executive Director of the Donaldson Adoption Institute and an adoptive parent, said of the current state of adoption: 

“It’s a system that deep-sixes the rights of birth moms and dads.” “We give lip service to the best interests of the child, then we do things that constantly prove that the adoptive couple are the only people we’re concerned about.” 

Lip service indeed. Spoken by the king of adoption lip service himself, who like the attorneys in these cases has a livelihood dependant upon the continuation of the redistribution of children through adoption and cannot bit too hard on the hands that feed him.  Yes, adoptive parents are the only ones the system favors because they are the only paying customers. It is their demand that sets the wheels in motion and it is they who pay all the bills for the scum-sucking baby brokers and “facilitators,” industry lobbyists and spokespersons.
Desaray: Another Veronica?
Another case already looms: that of Desaray Simmons, being challenged by the Absentee Shawnee Tribe. The contested adoption of Desaray begins by following in the same footsteps as Veronica, involving  OK and SC and employing the very same South Carolina attorneys: Raymond Godwin and James Fletcher Thompson. One difference that hopefully might prove major: the couple trying to adopt Desaray did NOT secure interstate compact approval before leaving Oklahoma with her. Shawnee attorney Charles Tripp of Owasso, Okla., has argued that the baby was removed secretly, that neither the tribe nor the father got proper notice of the proceedings. An Oklahoma judge has since ordered Desaray’s return, but Godwin is fighting the move in South Carolina.

Godwin gets referrals from pastors, hospitals, attorneys and businesses that advertise for pregnant women. He then, conveniently sends them to his wife’s agency:  Nightlight Christian Adoption. Which in turn steers women toward what they consider one of the best options — and the one that pays both Goodwins’ fees - adoption.
“If she decides to parent, she’s going to be living in a life of poverty,” says Beauvais-Godwin, the attorneys wife and head of Nightlight, a statement that indicates the brainwashing applied to mothers in crisis and contradicts that the agency’s major concern is preventing abortion. “Savior” wanna-be adopters are allowed, in South Carolina, to pay: down payments on housing or a vehicle, rental fees, food and utility bills, in addition to medical expenses.
Remove profit in adoption and remove tragedies such as Veronica and Desaray,
Adoption reform is in dire need of more than lip service. There is far too much money to be made and far too few laws in place to curb abuses in private adoptions.

Put an end to pre-birth matching and direct payments from pre-adopters to expectant moms and loopholes on “expenses” – all of which is contrary to laws against pre-birth contracts. Pre-birth matching creates false expectations for adopters and expectant moms creating feelings of indebtedness and obligation.

Disallow the accepted predatory practice of adopters in the delivery room and allow new moms a time to bond and make a decision based on a real, live human descendant in her arms, not a concept.

Set appropriate time limits for taking a relinquishment and for the mother to revoke her consent. Even car sales have a cooling of period! SC, is here too one of the most lax states and why it has one of the largest number of adoption agencies and why they – and Utah - snatch expectant mothers from other states, a practice which should be outlawed.

But all we do is give lip service to each tragedy as it unfolds and then go right back to business as usual – taking people’s children through deceit and deception, using whatever means possible to coerce and exploit to get the desired COMMODITY to an ever-increasing market, now doubled by the acceptance of same-sex adoption in all but some religious agencies and some countries other than the U$.

In Conclusion

Veronica’s case, sadly, stands as proof that deceit can win. It is a testament to pure unadulterated vindictive mother vengeance triumphing. It is a flagship win for entitlement by virtue of paying for an adoption – celebrated by baby-snatchers far and wide who see natural parents as nothing more than a impediment, a road block to their heart’s desire to be pulverized and plowed over. See “Adoption Entitlement and Class Warfare: What makes the Capobiancos and others like them tick"? 

Veronica's Fourth Birthday - in Oklahoma with, her family, The Browns

Veronica’s case stands to demonstrate clearly that lies and deceptions, coercion, whatever – can, and too often are – victorious in the end. All you need is money, a whole lot of STUBBORN, and an equal amount of selfishness and a self-centered lack of concern for your child’s best interest or his or her roots, heritage etc.…. and you will prevail

In denying the Capobiancos’ first appeal, the S.C. Supreme Court noted the birth mother’s vengeful and deceitful attempts to conceal the adoption. 

Christina Maldonado first indicated on a form her hesitancy to identify the father, Dusten Brown, because of his ties to the Cherokee Nation. When she went to an Oklahoma hospital to give birth, Maldonado was on “strictly no report” status, preventing inquirers like Brown from learning that she had been admitted.

Vindictive vengeance, deceit, duplicity and fraud that led to Dusten’s name being misspelled and thus no proper notification to the tribe of an impending adoption. Accident?

Just as in other types of US court cases - including the most notorious OJ Simpson murder trail – it’s always about who has the better lawyer, not right and wrong.

Will Desaray be another victim of corrupt adoption and the failure of the courts to consider the best interest of children and the constitutional right of parents to nurture their own children unless proven unfit to do so?

Children are born to (at least) two parents. U$ adoption practice too often negates that fact.

Adoption is supposed to serve the needs of orphans and children who are abandoned, abused, neglected or unwanted….or whose parents – BOTH - are convinced that adoption is their willing choice.  Neither Veronica nor Desaray fit any of those categories. Both have loving, capable blood-kin who never abused or neglected any child and who never consented to an adoption.

In both cases, their adoptions should have been halted the moment a willing and able father – and/or extended family – stepped up to the plate and demonstrated in court a desire to overturn a pending adoption from being finalized. PERIOD!

We mourn with you, Dusten and we pray for Veronica....and Desaray...and for every child torn from loving family to become a prized commodity...


Dana Seilhan said...

The Capobiancos didn't get ICPC approval either, I heard. This case was messed up all the way around.

Lorraine Dusky said...

Thank you Mirah, for this informative post. You and I and everybody who understands the full impact of adoption is still reeling emotionally from this case.

We are all still so sad.

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