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Activist Supreme Court Justices — Part II, Family Violence

"… it is the formulation of the policy that will determine the impact" and: " ... A gender research approach begins with women’s experience as they see it"

Diversity and Justice: Gender Perspectives.
A Guide to Gender Equality Analysis, 1998
by the Department of Justice Canada

This a document in four parts.  

  1. Part I — Judges with an agenda
       General evidence of all-pervasive, feminist anti-male bias in Canada's jurisprudence
  2. Part II — Family Violence
       Evidence of all-pervasive, feminist anti-male bias in Canada's jurisprudence in relation to family violence.  Part 2 deals not only with anti-male bias but also identifies evidence of a very strong bias towards denial of the culpability of women in cases of family violence against men and children.  Part 2 is contained on this page.
  3. Part III — Child Support and Alimony
       In this part of her critique of Madam Justice Beverley McLachlin's (Chief Justice of Canada) speech at the Family Law Dinner of the Ontario Bar Association Eeva Sodhi reveals the systematic design and implementation of a system for the planned destruction of the family, a system designed to put non-custodial parents (predominantly fathers) into poverty, to keep custodial parents (predominantly mothers) under- or unemployed, and to prevent any chance at reconciliation, joint custody or reasonable involvement of fathers in the upbringing of their children.
  4. Part IV — Best Interest of the Children and Conclusions
       In this, the last part of her four-part critique, Eeva Sodhi identifies the obscenity of a feminist jurisprudence which, ostensibly in the best interest of the children, acts contrary to the children's best interest by deliberately destroying the bond between child and father.  The conclusions of her critique contain findings that will without any doubt surprise many and shatter a considerable number of myths.

Part II — Family Violence

When looking at the statistical data, one has to remember that much of the available research is now conducted according to the gender equality guidelines mandated by the Department of Justice Canada.

These guidelines, given in part IV, "Gender Equality Analysis in Research and Statistics" of the "Diversity and Justice: Gender Perspectives.A Guide to Gender Equality Analysis, 1998" by the Department of Justice Canada specify that:

  • "… it is the formulation of the policy that will determine the impact" and: "make a careful choice about which indicators are going to be applied, because you want the indicators to reflect the gendered approach you are developing."
  • "The integration of gender equality analysis into the research and evaluation work of the Department implies a departure from traditional research methodology. It does not start with a premise of neutrality, nor limit its investigation to sex disaggregated data. A gender research approach begins with women’s experience as they see it. Both quantitative and qualitative information sources are required. (See Appendix G for a list of sources of statistical information.)"

Research which is formulated on the principle of determining the impact is not research. It is propaganda made to appear legitimate. The Department of Justice Canada list of source information refers to feminist sources only.

In spite of the feminist bias, the year 2000 edition of "Family Violence in Canada" by Statistics Canada documented that almost an equal number of men and women reported that they were victims of intimate partner violence.

The subsequent edition (2001) reaffirmed the findings.

A 1999 study by Kwong, Bartholomew, & Dutton, called "Gender Differences in Patterns of Relationship Violence in Alberta" [published in the Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science, Vol. 31, No. 3, July 1999. pp. 150-160] concludes that

"Consistent with research outside Canada, men and women reported similar rates of violence perpetration and victimization. And, while more comprehensive study is needed, it appears that a substantial proportion of women’s violence cannot be explained as acts of self-defense. (p. 158)

This study correlates other similar studies, including the longitudinal study conducted in New Zealand, called "Partner Violence Among Young Adults" [Series: NIJ Research Preview, April 1997, Office of Justice Programs, National Institute of Justice (U.S.)]

Dr. Donald Dutton, well known for his research on wife abuse, writes:

"For a man, sociopolitical comparisons with women or with a woman are irrelevant. What is experienced, especially in intimate relationships, is the power advantage women appear to have in their ability to introspect, analyze and describe feelings and process. Hence, assaultive males report feeling powerless in respect to their intimate partners (Dutton & Strachan, 1987). … While batterers may appear powerful in terms of their physical or sociopolitical resources, they are distinctly impotent in terms of their psychic and emotional resources, even to the point of depending on their female partner to maintain their sense of identity (Dutton, 1992). … Given their advantages in strength and power, males can avoid physical conflict with women under all but the most extenuating circumstances.... Nevertheless, those women who did report using violence in intimate relationships, 73.4% said they struck the first blow (Bland & Orn 1986), women physically abuse children more than men do (Straus et al., 1980) and that only minor differences exist between male and female aggression (Frodi, Macaulay & Thome, 1977; Hyde, 1984). ...With these data, the use of severe violence by females was not in reaction to male violence or as a preemptive strike, since the female partner in each couple reported only minor violence from her male partner despite using severe violence herself. Similarly, couples where only the female was violent were significantly more common (39.4% of dating couples, 26.9% of cohabiting couples, 28.6% of married couples) than couples where only the male was violent (10.5% of dating couples, 20.7% of cohabiting couples, 23.2% of married couples)."

Though it is amply documented by now that men and women are equally capable of aggression, women slightly more than men, Madam Chief Justice McLachlin chose to ignore it in her address to the Ontario Bar Association (January 24, 2002). She betrays her feminist bias by using as her source of information the 1999 report "Legal Responses to Domestic Violence in Canada and the Role of Health Care Professionals" by Nicholas Bala which relies heavily on the 1993 "Violence Against Women Survey" and equates "family violence" with "violence against women".

By slipping in that bit of propaganda the Chief Justice of Canada concurs with the common interpretation that able-bodied men are outside the protection afforded to other family members.

The Departments of Health and Justice Canada, among others, describe family violence in the following manner:

The Department of Justice Canada: "During the past two decades, much public and professional attention has concentrated on family violence from the perspective of those who are victimized. In particular, the emphasis has been on: violence against women in intimate relationships or woman abuse including spousal abuse, dating violence and other forms of violence against women [and] child abuse including physical abuse, sexual abuse and exploitation, neglect, and emotional abuse (including exposure to spousal abuse); and abuse of older adults."

Health Canada’s version: "Family violence -- whether child abuse, violence against women, or abuse of seniors -- is not something that happens to strangers. It happens in our families, among our neighbours, our friends and our co-workers."

The Department of Justice Canada leaves no doubt about its bias in a document called "Abuse is Wrong in Any Language", just to mention one:

"Usually the abuser is a husband, ex-husband, boyfriend, or ex-boyfriend. Sometimes a member of your family or your husband's family is the abuser. The abuser could be a woman, but is usually a man. …But, remember -- nothing you do gives anyone the right to abuse you. [original emphasis] …There is no excuse for abuse. It is not your fault."

World-wide statistics show that the abuser is not "usually a man". The blanket assertions to an anonymous reader that "nothing you do gives anyone the right to abuse you", and "It is not your fault" are prejudicial.

The "Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms" states that:

  • Any person charged with an offence has the right [article 11]

d) to be presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law in a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal;

  • Notwithstanding anything in this Charter, the rights and freedoms referred to in it are guaranteed equally to male and female persons. [article 28]
  • Nothing in this Charter extends the legislative powers of any body or authority. [Article 31]

The birth of the "Family Violence Courts" changed the concept that each individual has the right to be presumed innocent until found guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction. There now is a reverse onus on men to prove their innocence, the women need not prove their allegations. As most alleged family violence cases have no witnesses, it is only the woman’s word against the man’s.

Lenore Walker’s "Battered Woman Defence" is part of the judicial gender sensitivity training material. As shown in part I, the courts accept her interpretation that if a woman says that she has been battered, then she most likely has been battered.

Curiously, though, the reverse is not true. The 1993 "Violence Against Women Survey" (VAWS) by Statistics Canada deemed that woman abuse has occurred even if the alleged "victim" does not consider what happened to be abuse.

According to VAWS, 52% of the women who had not reported the incident to the police or contacted any social service agencies said that they considered the incident to be "too minor" to make a report, and another 10% said that they did not want or need help. Only 8% said that they feared partner retaliation.

The findings in the "British Home Office Research Study 191" are still more revealing:

"Most of the incidents were not considered to be crimes by their victims: only 17% overall. Virtually no male victims defined their experience as a crime. 64% of the respondents said that it was "just something that happens"

Yet, any incident that a woman answered in affirmative in the VAWS was included in the victim statistics, whether or not she considered it to be abuse. Furthermore, the VAWS did not include any data on mutual, or female perpetrated or intiated, violence. Women were to be seen only as victims, no matter who was the initiator or the sole perpetrator.

Tammy Landau writes in a Department of Justice Canada Working Document, called "Synthesis of Department of Justice Canada Research Findings on Spousal Assault" that there is a high rate of attrition of cases. The Manitoba Tracking Study indicated that only 21% of all cases dispatched resulted in charges, and only 12% resulted in convictions. Lack of physical evidence, 54%, was the main reason.

Logically, if there was no physical evidence, there was no assault.

The study also found that many women feel that the mandatory charging process leaves them feeling disempowered and that the justice system promotes separation rather than reconciliation.

It is troubling to learn that though 70% of the women wanted the police to charge their spouse, the police laid charges in 85% of the cases. Furthermore, 78% of the women did not want to testify or go to court. Clearly the police and the courts are acting beyond the call of duty.

Another curious editorial by Ms. Landau is that

"there was encouraging evidence that EIO’s [Emergency Interventions Orders] were issued in cases where there were no criminal charges and no evidence of assault". Somehow Ms. Landau’s vision of this as being encouraging rather than an indication of excess judicial powers is not cogent.

Other findings were that the "police, Crowns and judges share the concern that scarce resources should be devoted to more serious cases rather than to minor cases". Thus, even those who are mandated to enforce the policy disagree with it. It is illogical to uphold a policy that all those who are affected by it reject it.

A report by the Police Services Division, British Columbia Ministry of Attorney General, called "Survey of Spousal Assaults Reported to Police [year] in British Columbia" is another one that has made an attempt to document the number of initial reports that are eventually validated.

The particular report covering the year 1995 notes that

"there is no such Criminal Code offence as "Spousal Assault", rather, the determination that an offence is a spousal assault is based on the finding that an offence has occurred against a spouse."

The B.C. police services follow the "Violence Against Women in Relationships" (WAVIR) policy. In addition to women in heterosexual relationships, the policy is designed to cover violence against males in homosexual relationships, against vulnerable males in heterosexual relationships and against women in Lesbian relationships. In short, able-bodied heterosexual men are excluded.

The 1995 survey consisted of a sample of 522 incidents, out of which 72 were rejected, and 450 were included in the sample.

Though the report is based on 450 reported incidents, consisting of 526 recommended charges, it states that

"nine out of ten of the 450 spousal assault victims were female … in at least 13% of the cases the victim sought medical attention" [p. vii]

The sex of the [alleged] victim in the rejected cases or in cases where the police decided not to lay charges is unknown.

Out of the 450 reported incidents 334 were cleared by charge. Crown Counsel proceeded with 305 incidents (464 charges), 206 (68%) of the accused had previous convictions, 49% were for violent offences. Clearly we are not dealing with "violence against women" as a unique form of violence, but rather violence committed by people who are predisposed to violence [p.23]

In 1996, 70% of level 1 reports of [alleged] spousal assault cases were cleared by charges, whereas 28% of reports of level 1 of [alleged] non-spousal assaults were similarly cleared. Ten per cent of all charges were for allegations of uttering threats [p. 22]. The gender of the alleged victim is not disclosed where no charges were laid.

Even the writer of the report feels compelled to comment:

"It is interesting to note that although 60% of the charges were for the least serious form of assault (level 1 assault) and 71% of victims did not seek medical attention, in most cases the police proceeded with charges and the crown approved these charges."

The semantics become somewhat confusing, once more, as p. vii tells that about 13% sought medical attention. The breakdown on p. 20 indicates that in 16% of the cases it was not known if medical attention was sought.

In keeping with the Department of Justice instructions to portray women as victims the editorial themes running across this, and all other similar survey reports, make a point of commenting that women were more seriously hurt even th data to correlate this are available. The British Home Office study actually shows that rather than seeking medical attention for injuries "half of the women who saw a doctor or went to hospital said that it was wholly or partly for emotional or other reasons" [p. 38]

The survey indicates that 48% of the incidents ended in convictions. Only 36% of all charges laid by the Crown ended in conviction, 56% ended in non-conviction, and ‘other’ findings accounted for 8% of the outcome. It is curious that there is no reference to the possibility that the charges in the 56% non-convictions were due to false allegations. Or that at least some of the 48% who were convicted were innocent.

The FREDA Centre for Research on Violence against Women and Children, in "Myths and Realities of Custody and Access " (June 1998) disseminated the findings from the 1993/94 report in the following manner:

Of the spousal assault incidents in British Columbia in 1993 that resulted in convictions, 97 percent of those convicted were men, while less than 2 percent were women. [Source: Ministry of Attorney General, Police Services Division, "Survey of Spousal Assaults Reported to Police in British Columbia," December 1996.]

FREDA ignores that as most of the reports were made by women, and since only 36% of the charges ended with convictions, most of the false allegations could also be presumed to have been made by women.

Another option in the Family Violence Courts is the so-called "diversion" program. Under this scheme, the alleged offender is given the option of participating in a program, provided he pleads guilty, or facing prosecution on a criminal charge. It is no wonder that most men opt to plead guilty and thus avoid criminal prosecution. How one can be found not guilty by pleading guilty is one of the unsolved mysteries of feminist jurisprudence.

In the B.C. study, almost half of all charges resulted in stay of proceedings. Significantly, the reason was unknown or not stated in 57% of the 221 charges that were stayed by the Crown Counsel. Although the survey included a question concerning reasons for stays, the data were excluded from the analysis due to a high non-response rate. The study did not raise the question of false allegations, even though no more than a third of the charges resulted in convictions. It may not be too cynical to assume, as I know from personal experience, that the stay was instituted in order to help women avoid perjury and/or public mischief charges.

The Department of Justice insists that there is a high degree of support for mandatory charging among [alleged] victims, but considerably less consensus with respect to prosecution. Though the researchers present several explanations for the lack of support, they ignore the most obvious one: namely that the allegations may have been false, or that the alleged altercation was mutual or initiated by the complainer.

The credibility of the VAWS is further in doubt when one considers the questions * which are open to any subjective interpretation:
[Sorry, but the link to that article no longer functions, and the page was not archived in the Internet Archive.]

"Sometimes women receive other types of UNWANTED attention. In this case I mean anything that DOES NOT include touching such as catcalls, whistling, leering, or blowing kisses. Have you ever received unwanted attention from a MALE STRANGER?" [1B10]

"(Has a man you knew) ever leaned over you unnecessarily, got too close or cornered you?" [B21]

Women were asked to describe their male partner, not accuse them:

"I'm going to read a list of statements that some women have used to describe their husband/partner. Thinking about your husband/partner, I'd like you to tell me whether or not each statement describes him." [H1]

"He calls you names to put you down or make you feel bad." [H5]

"Has your husband/partner ever THREATENED to hit you with his fist or anything else that could hurt you?" [J2]

Anyone who answered in affirmative was counted as a victim, whether she considered herself a victim or not.

Ontario Superior Court Justice, Mary Lou Benotto, wrote the following in 1995:

Domestic abuse is abhorrent. I have never found a judicial officer who treated physical cruelty with anything but the seriousness it deserves. However, the term "abuse" has been diluted beyond all proportion. There is scarcely a separated spouse who does not believe that he or she was in an abusive relationship. Abuse is a powerful term. But it is routinely used to describe shouting, badgering, voice raising, walking away when angry. Think for a minute about your private relationship. So as not to raise a bald allegation, the particulars given of the marital discord become very detailed. [Justice Mary Lou Benotto: "Ethics in Family Law: Is Family Law Advocacy a Contradiction in Terms?", Presented to the Advocates’ Society Conference in Nassau, Bahamas, 2 December 1995]

Vivian Green, on behalf of the Woman Abuse Council of Toronto, describes the proceedings at the North York Family Violence Court:

"While the women are speaking with the Crown Attorney and Victim Witness Co-ordinator, the men have the opportunity [if ever there was an oxymoron, this one] to meet with the centralized intake staff person, provided by the Metro Woman Abuse Council [now the Woman Abuse Council of Toronto], who is responsible for assigning individuals to the intervention programs. As the men meet with the centralized Intake staff they begin to decide if they will plead guilty and if so, they are assigned to an appropriate agency.... Once all of the women have had an opportunity to identify what they want, the full court reconvenes. At this point those charged who are willing to plead guilty and enter the program appear before the judge and are mandated to attend the already identified intervention program."

It used to be that an accused pleaded either guilty or innocent in front of a judge, not in front of a worker from a "Woman Abuse Council". Not that that makes much difference under current policies. After all, it is the Woman Abuse Council that trains the judges, the Crown Counsellors and victim/witness co-ordinators.

Few men have the resources for prolonged litigations. Thus the majority can be coerced to plead guilty and enter into a diversion program, especialy after having been charged, handcuffed, finger-printed, and often rough-handled by the arresting officers before made to spend at least one night or a week-end in jail. They are subsequently informed that they stand to lose everything that they own if they proceed to defend themselves as they have precious little chance of winning in the criminal court. Only the very foolhardy will insist, often at their peril, on their charter rights.

While writing this and scanning the day's (June 6, 2002) news, my eye caught an article in the Globe and Mail, called: "Crowded jail leads judge to reduce sentence" by Kirk Makin.

The article describes the conditions in the Metro West Detention Centre where those who wait for their trial are kept:

Highlights: "Judge Kenkel said the three beds -- one on the floor -- found in most cells in Metro West Detention Centre are more than permitted under minimum standards for prisoners set by the United Nations, notwithstanding the fact that Canada agreed in 1975 to abide by the UN standards ... Infectious diseases such as tuberculosis are "not uncommon" at the jail, Judge Kenkel observed ... He observed that in the common area, many inmates have to eat standing up due to seating shortage ... There was an odd debate among the witnesses about whether inmates on the floor generally prefer to sleep with their heads beside the toilet to be closer to the open grill at the door, or to sleep with their heads under the desk ... judge Kenkel noted dryly"

If you ever wondered what would persuade a man to plead guilty to something that he did not do, wonder no more. One night under those conditions is incentive enough.

The conditions for men, who might well be proven innocent once they have had their trial, maybe several months later like the man in the article, stand in sharp contrast to the cottage-like facilities that are provided to women inmates, including Karla Homolka. Women have private rooms with doors that can be locked from inside, kitchens, gardens and on-site shops, and they can shack up with their Lesbian lovers, just like Karla. Beats living on the streets or on welfare.

For the sake of comparison, the average cost to house a female offender for a year is $115,000. The costs for men vary from $96,740 in maximum security to $29,921 in community correctional services (based on 1999-2000 estimates by the Correctional Service of Canada)

When Correctional Service of Canada tried to introduce an anger management into women’s services, it was rejected on the basis that it required women to be ready to assume responsibility for their actions [in: "CCRA 5 Year Review Women Offenders"]

There can be no doubt that gender bias is the rule rather than the exception within Canadian justice system.

The bias is further illustrated by the various provincial and territorial zero tolerance policies that make it clear that a man is to be charged and arrested whenever there is a report of "wife assault", but that the same directives do not apply to "family disturbance", presumably meaning when a woman is the perpetrator. According to the Duluth Model:

"The need was to arrest the predominant aggressor. If that was the woman she would be offered a diversion programme. The prosecutors had a special policy for charging and prosecuting in these cases, to prevent the men from using the court as a means of control."

The description by Vivian Green about the family violence court operations leave no doubt that it is the women, not the men, who use the courts as a means of control.

One does not need to condone violence to understand the few men who, having failed to be heard or get justice in the courts of law, may take the law into their own hands. Thus the zero tolerance policies and family violence courts actually incite violence instead of stemming it.

The 1999 GSS found that 37% of allegations about violence involving female victims (78% of these were made by the woman herself) and 15% of allegations involving males (50% made by the man himself) were reported to the police [p. 19] One is tempted to think that most of the non-reports were because the "victim" would have felt silly to report that her/his partner was going to walk away from a fight, or something similar.

Hitherto none of the victimization surveys have included the question "has your partner ever filed false allegations against you" in their questionnaires.

False allegations during divorce and custody proceedings have been dubbed "the silver bullet". Dwyer (1986) reports that 77% of the divorce linked allegations of sex abuse cases coming to the Human Sexuality Program at the University of Minnesota have turned out to be "hoax" cases.

The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that:

Every year since 1989, in about 25 percent of the sexual assault cases referred to the FBI where results could be obtained (primarily by State and local law enforcement), the primary suspect has been excluded by forensic DNA testing. Specifically, FBI officials report that out of roughly 10,000 sexual assault cases since 1989, about 2,000 tests have been inconclusive (usually insufficient high molecular weight DNA to do testing), about 2,000 tests have excluded the primary suspect, and about 6,000 have "matched" or included the primary suspect. The fact that these percentages have remained constant for 7 years, and that the National Institute of Justice's informal survey of private laboratories reveals a strikingly similar 26-percent exclusion rate, strongly suggests that postarrest and postconviction DNA exonerations are tied to some strong, underlying systemic problems that generate erroneous accusations and convictions. ( in Convicted by Juries, Exonerated by Science: Case Studies by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs. June 1996)

The report did not consider that some of the allegations might have been of incidents of consensual sex.

What motivates women to file false allegations? The answer is simple: profit and no fear of repercussions. An allegation alone is sufficient to secure the exclusive possession of the matrimonial home, a restraining order against the man, and sole custody of the children, accompanied by generous support payments. Not to mention the sheer joy of revenge, no matter for what. This all can be done by an ex-parte order. Many victim/witness assistance programs give generous financial compensation to alleged female victims of sexual or non-sexual assaults.

If the accused man has the means to contest the order and the allegations are eventually found to be false, the woman need not fear any repercussions. As an example let's look at the case of Neil J. Miller, who was convicted in 1990 of raping and robbing an Emerson College student. He was cleared by a post conviction DNA test after 10 years behind the bars. While incarcerated, he had been given a choice either to repent and enroll in a treatment program, meaning that he would have to admit having done something that he did not do, or have no chance of getting out until his jail term was over. He chose to stay in jail.

After he was found to be innocent, the accuser apologized and "wanted to send a message that she hoped that he can go on with his life and that she is sorry for any injustice". That’s it. She says she is sorry and he is expected to be able to go on with his life as if nothing had happened. Ten years later his daughter, now almost 14 years old and under her mother's influence, tells him that he makes her sick and that she wishes that he was not her father. The Assistant Dean of Students at Vassar College commented:

"Men who are unjustly accused of rape can sometimes gain from the experience".

For the sake of gender equality, would it not be appropriate to give the accuser an equal opportunity to gain the same benefit?

If a man refuses to plead guilty, the litigations to prove his innocence can take years and exhaust all the family finances. In the meantime, if children are involved, the status quo has been firmly established and the judges hide behind the "best interest of the child" whom they have never met, and order the established state of affairs to continue. No matter what the consequences to the children or their fathers.

This leads us to the subject of emotional and financial abuse. Though Madam Chief Justice of Canada made a reference to that category of abuse during her January 24 address she implied, even if indirectly, that only women could be victims.

The research establishment can no longer ignore the role of indirect abuse, which is the brand preferred by women. This may manifest itself as mishandling family finances, filing false allegations about abuse, homicide that is done by a contract killer or disguised as an accident or suicide.

In Chambers v. Chambers (2001 BCSC 630) the "addicted to shopping" wife had siphoned $250,000 from the husband’s business account to her personal account and duly spent it in a matter of a year and a half. After the marriage ended in divorce, she increased her debts on her credit cards though the husband was paying her $16,100 a month spousal support on interim basis.

Judge Hutchinson ruled that the husband can only blame himself for allowing her to manage the finances, knowing her inability to control her habits. He also ruled that as she could not be expected to support herself at the level that she had become accustomed to during the marriage, he should be paying her $14,000 a month until she becomes self-sufficient, after which the monthly support will be reduced to $12,000.

He further ordered that he pay her $250,000 in equalization payments, rather than that she pay him the monies that she had pilfered from his business.

The 1995 Getkate case in Ottawa is equally interesting. It illustrates not only how a woman can get away with the murder of a sleeping man but can also use the "battered woman" defence though all the evidence proves that she herself was the abuser, at least as far as family finances were concerned.

On Dec. 8, 1995, Lilian Getkate shot her sleeping husband twice. An Ottawa-Carleton police officer testified that he discovered a bundle of unopened, unpaid bills dating from the fall of 1994 in the laundry room. Mr. Getkate's MasterCard account and Ms. Getkate's Visa and Zellers accounts had gone largely unpaid.

A witness testified that Mr. Getkate entrusted money-management to his wife, as is the case in most Canadian households where the wife is not gainfully employed. The police officer also found altered financial records, in which numbers were cut and pasted to falsify the documents.

The Crown contended that Mrs. Getkate's alleged illness (depression) stemmed from her dissatisfaction with the marriage and her inability to manage the household's finances. The Getkates were more than $40,000 in debt.

It is a travesty of justice that Lilian Getkate, who was convicted of manslaughter in the death of her husband, was sentenced to serve two years less a day at her home in Maple Ridge, B.C. The Attorney-General's office in Toronto turned down the appeal request made by Crown attorneys.

The Elizabeth Fry Society has accepted the following interpretation of this case that was published in "Canadian Woman Studies", October 2000:

"In a recent Canadian case, a Canadian woman named Gitake [sic] married to a police psychologist lived in terror for herself and family. Her abusive husband had wired the house with explosives. She killed him in his sleep. The system was unable to perceive her self-defence and so charged and convicted her."

There was no evidence of the house being "wired with explosives". Nor was any evidence about abuse presented during the trial. Clearly this was a case of exonerating the perpetrator by blaming the victim.

Lilian Getkate and Lisa Ferguson, another Ottawa area woman who shot her sleeping common law husband in 1993, were sentenced to what is known as a conditional sentence of imprisonment, to be served at home. Newspapers reported that Lisa had been the abusive partner in the relationship. One of the conditions "imposed" on Lilian was that she "continue to maintain regular contact with her family." That to me would seem a reward rather than punishment.

Lisa Ferguson was in the headlines again this year (2002) when she was arrested in January for attacking her new live-in male friend with a hammer. She was subsequently released from police custody on consent from the Crown's office. One of the conditions of her release is that she reside at the same address as her victim [source: "Alleged victim, attacker together. Judge orders pair under one roof" By Lisa Lisle -- Ottawa Sun (Feb. 9, 2002)] It may not be too far fetched to assume that a man in similar circumstances would have been declared a dangerous offender and locked up indefinitely.

Yet another Ottawa area case is worth mentioning, especially as it encompasses all the elements: a murder first judged to be a suicide, the contract killing of a Lesbian lover, and forcing a child to utter false allegations against the father.

Scott Dell’s death was included in the suicide statistics, yet, 15 months later his former wife, Cherylle, was convicted of his murder.

Not only did Cherylle kill her husband, she also forced her daughter to lie that she (the daughter) had been sexually abused by the father.

It did not end there: Cherylle also hired a hit man to kill her Lesbian lover who had made a videotaped statement about Scott’s murder to the police.

Statistics continuously ignore that a substantial number of homicides remains unsolved. Almost all of the unsolved cases have male victims.

A report by the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics, called "Spouse Murder Defendants in Large Urban Counties" (NCJ-153256) documented, in a sample of homicide cases in 75 of the nation's most populous counties, that three percent of the husbands and 6% of the wives were charged with contract killings. Considering the number of the unsolved cases, and considering that murders committed by a contract killer would most likely remain unsolved, the numbers of women and men killing their spouses also remain unknown.

According to the report, state court judges or juries acquitted 6% of the husband defendants, compared to 31% of the wife defendants in 1988. Jury trials ended in acquittal for 27% of wives, but none of the husbands.

Thirty percent of the wives and 13% of the husbands either were not prosecuted or were found not guilty after being tried.

Correctional Service of Canada in its report called "Women Convicted of Homicide Serving a Federal Sentence" documents that

  1. Contract killer was used in 4% of the known cases. The use of a contract killer was more frequent in spousal homicides than in other typologies.
  2. Of the 175 cases where information was available, 44% of the offenders had experienced some sort of prior conflict with their victim while 55.4% had not ...
  3. ... overall, it would appear that most victims (69.4%) were not behaving aggressively towards the victim [sic. should be perpetrator] at the time of the homicide. These victims were lying down, sitting down, sitting in the car, sleeping, or passed out when the homicide occured ...
  4. Nine percent of the women committed homicide as an act of self-defense. These homicides occurred because the offender, working as a prostitute, had to protect herself against assault or unwanted sexual advances perpetrated by a customer. Spousal homicides are included in this category, but only when the spouse is attacking the offender at the time when the homicide occurs.

The wording "some sort of prior conflict" is revealing. It does not specify the nature of conflict nor who was responsible for the conflict. As all humans experience "some sort of" conflict with those that they interact with on daily basis, that statement can hardly be considered to be of any value. The editorial comments by the writers of the "Family Violence in Canada", as well as of other government sponsored reports, fall in the same category.

It may be more than mere coincidence that Lenore Walker’s "Cycle of Violence" description is an almost identical to the signs identified by the women's health advocates as being symptomatic of women who suffer from PMDD

Under the pressure of the feminist advocacy movement the medical establishment, including dentists, has replaced solid science by politically correct perception and now sees all women patients as potential victims, as instructed in the various handbooks that are commissioned and distributed by Health Canada, suffice to mention the following three:

  1. "The Health Care Sector’s Response to Woman Abuse. A Discussion Paper for the Family Violence Prevention Division, Health Canada"
  2. "A Handbook Dealing With Woman Abuse And The Canadian Criminal Justice System: Guidelines For Physicians"
  3. "Family Violence Handbook for the Dental Community"

The feminist research establishment has taken the easy way out and blames testosterene where more complex physiological explanations would be in order. Any discussion about mood swings exhibited by human females during the various stages of their oestrus cycle is taboo. Yet, the scientific evidence is indisputable, though carefully guarded by the gatekeepers.

Michael A. Ferenczi, National Institute for Medical Research (U.K.), in his paper called: "Seasonal Depression and Light Therapy" says:

"Some people, perhaps as many as one in ten of the population suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD … It is reported that four out of five of these patients are women, with the largest patient group being in their late twenties …With the arrival of spring and early summer, the symptoms disappear. Energy returns and some of the extra pounds melt away … So strong seems to be the effect of daylight on many aspects of our behaviour, that daylight exposure may explain, in part, why the temperament and lifestyles of Mediterraneans and Northerners are so different."

Doctors, dentists and other health care professionals are told that if a woman is depressed, slovenly, sleeps too much or too little, she may be abused by her male partner, not that it may simply be a manisfestation of her inability to cope with her hormones or with the seasons.

The National Mental Health Association (U.S.), in a fact sheet called: "Mental Health and Adolescent Girls in the Justice System" reports that negative body image was a common problem for adolescent girls. Girls (59%) also experienced more mood disorders than boys (22%).

Yet, in spite of the evidence, the denial of men's rights goes on, unabated. We have become a culture of selective rights which sees equality as all the rights and excuses to women and all the responsibilities and accountability to men. Time to take a pause and reflect on the evidence, especially in the light of the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) report on injury deaths in Ontario, released Nov. 28, 2001. The report shows that suicides accounted for one-third of Ontario's 3,138 injury deaths in 1998-99. Men made up 79% of the deaths and the mean age of death was 44. The report indicates that the top 2 reasons for male suicide are the loss of job and the loss of family and children through separation and divorce. Our gender biased courts are killing some of the best and brightest of Canadian men. Considering that divorce has been shown to be one of the two main causes for male suicide, and considering the role of the family courts, many male suicides can be seen to be spousal homicide by proxy.

The "state femocrats" at the Department of Justice Canada, to quote the Status of Women Canada, have recognized that

"… it is the formulation of the policy that will determine the impact" and: " ... A gender research approach begins with women’s experience as they see it"

The above two directives contradict each other. One cannot formulate a policy with a predetermined idea of its impact if one wants to hear the women's experiences as they, not the interviewers, see them.

The "Battered Woman Defence" justifies woman's aggression, no matter if her victim is her child, her parent or her lover, as a reaction to some negative stimuli received from an external source, which, according to the feminist dogma, is the man with whom she is in an intimate relationship. Yet, according to science, both of them are prisoners of their own physiology, hers more so than his as she, and thus he also, is controlled by her rhythmic hormonal changes. By asking both men and women "why did your partner do it", instead of "what did your partner do", we might get the necessary understanding needed to reduce, not increase as is done now, conflict within a family.

False Allegations about Child Abuse.

To further erode their credibility, the above mentioned FREDA document continues:

"Large scale studies show that sexual abuse allegations occur in only 2 percent of all disputed custody and access cases. Of those 2 percent, only 8 percent were found to be false, and furthermore, mothers were no more likely than fathers to make false allegations." [Source: Susan Penfold, "Questionable Beliefs About Child Sexual Abuse Allegations During Custody Disputes," Canadian Journal of Family Law, 14(1), 1997.]

"According to 1996 figures from the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, fathers made up a large majority (80 percent) of parents accused of assaulting their children, accounting for 98 percent of parents accused of sexual assault and 73 percent of parents accused of physical assault." [Source: Robin Fitzgerald, "Assaults Against Children and Youth in the Family," Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, 1996.]

An accusation does not make a finding of guilt. Even FREDA is more cautious than the editors of the "Family Violence in Canada" who boldly declare that:

"Regardless of the type of abuse or the children’s age, children and youth were most often assaulted by their fathers. In incidents involving parents in 1999, children were the victims of their fathers in nearly all (98%) sexual assault incidents, and a large majority (71%) of physical assault incidents." {FVC 2000, p. 33]

The fact that fathers made up the large majority of those accused but were found to be the minority in substantiated cases is further proof that the system is rife with false allegations made by mothers.

There have been only two "large scale" studies on child abuse and neglect in Canada until now. The first one was the "Ontario Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect" (OIS) , followed by the "Canadian Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect" (CIS) Both found that mothers were the main perpetrators of abuse.

The CIS found that

Biological mothers were the accused in 61% of all cases of maltreatment, and 41% of the allegations were substantiated, 24% were suspected, and 35% were unsubstantiated. Biological fathers [that is: natural fathers] were accused in 38% of the cases, 45% were substantiated, 23% suspected, and 32% were unsubstantiated.

Another worthwhile observation: the data are given as investigated, substantiated, suspected and unsubstantiated. All, except the data pertaining to intact families, which reports only investigations (see page 49, and table 5):

"the alleged roles of mothers and fathers in two-parent families is somewhat different, with fathers being investigated in 71% of physical abuse cases, and mothers in 43%" (see Appendix I, table 5).

Two-parent families include the pre-separation period, during which most false allegations against fathers are filed. That may be the statistic that is referred to by FREDA and the year 2000 edition of the "Family Violence in Canada".

Heidi Polowin, now Madam Justice Polowin, testified on behalf of the Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa-Carleton during the 24th Meeting of the Special Joint Committee on the Child Custody and Access (1998) that out of the 900 reported cases of child abuse in custody and access disputes in Ottawa-Carleton, more than 600, or two thirds, were unsubstantiated.

Independent researchers document that false abuse allegations during divorce and custody proceedings are used extensively by women as a pre-emptive strike against their male partners.

  • Mothers constituted 67 per cent of the accusers in the nationwide study which revealed that allegations of abuse in divorce/custody disputes were found to be invalid about 50 per cent of the time. Fathers were the accusers in 22 percent of cases while third parties such as relatives and professionals were the adult initiators 11 percent of the time. (Source: Thoennes N, Tjaden PG: "The extent, nature, and validity of sexual abuse allegations in custody visitation disputes." Child Abuse and Neglect 1990; 12:151-63).
  • H. Wakefield and R. Underwager in their "Techniques for interviewing children in sexual abuse cases" document that 77% of all allegations of child sexual abuse during divorce and custody proceedings are false.
  • Blush and Ross sketch three psychological profiles for mothers who file false allegations. Mothers tend to portray themselves as 'fearful victims', 'justified vindicators' or to some degree ‘psychotic’ (Source: Blush GJ, Ross KL: Sexual allegations in divorce: the SAID syndrome. Conciliation Courts Review 1987; 25:1:1-11).
  • Wakefield and Underwager made a systematic review of divorce/custody case files to examine and compare the characteristics of 72 false accusers, 103 falsely accused parents and a control group of 67 parents disputing custody but without allegations of abuse. Approximately 75% of the false accusers exhibited significant pathology, while most of the parents who were disputing custody without abuse allegations were assessed as normal. Some of the false accusers were so obsessed with anger toward their estranged spouses that this became a major focus of their lives. They continued to be obsessed with abuse despite negative findings by mental health professionals and the courts, similar to what is found in cases of delusional disorder and Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy. The relationship of falsely accusing parents with their children was often characterized in the record as extremely controlling and symbiotic. Two were given a formal diagnosis of folie a deux between parent and child. Several exhibited extremely serious dysfunction. Mothers formed a majority of the false accusers. (Source: Wakefield H, Underwager R: Personality characteristics of parents making false accusations of sexual abuse in custody disputes. Issues in Child Abuse Accusations 1990; 2:3:121-136)
  • In a study by Prof. N. Bala, one hundred and ninety-six cases were identified. In 45 of the 150 cases (30%) where abuse was not proven, the judge believed that it was an intentionally false allegation. The cases involved 262 alleged child victims (74% of them alleged sexual abuse). About 71% of the allegations were made by mothers (64% custodial and 6% non-custodial), 17% were by fathers (6% custodial and 11% non-custodial). This study found that fathers were most likely to be accused of abuse (74%), followed by mothers (13%), mother's boyfriend or stepfather (7%). (Source: "Allegations Of Sexual Abuse When Parents Have Separated" [by] Professor Nicholas Bala & John Schuman, LL.M. Candidate. 11 May 1999)
  • David S. Gil of Brandeis University, Massachusetts (1985) says that 61-65% of child abuse accusations are found to be unfounded or false. In contested divorce cases with issues of child custody, the false accusation rate has reached 80%.

The list goes on. Often the parents, mostly mothers, who can expect to get sole custody want it only in order to become "empowered" and have the freedom to wield unobstructed power over the children and their non-custodial parents, mostly fathers. To achieve this, they may resort to false allegations of abuse, well knowing that there are no consequences even when the allegations have been found to be without merit. To prove that there was a malicious intent behind the allegations is a virtual impossibility.

At times, the powers of the custodial parent may become lethal. The latest survey by the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services included fatalities due to abuse and neglect gives the following statistics in its "Child Maltreatment 1999":

Mothers were found to be the only perpetrators in 44.7% (61.8% in all cases) of the substantiated cases of child maltreatment, fathers the only perpetrators in 15.9%. In maltreatment fatalities mothers were the perpetrators in 69.1% of all cases; they were the only perpetrators in 31.5% of the cases; fathers were involved in 33.1% of all cases and in 10.7% of the cases they were the only perpetrators.

The report does not specify what is meant by "father". Previous reports have included this to mean step- and adoptive fathers as well.

A couple of the few case law examples where the judge recognized the reality of false allegations:

  1. In Plesh v. Plesh (1992), 41 R.F.L. (3d) 102(Man Q.B.) Justice Carr said: "It is patently obvious from the evidence and the manner in which it was given that the mother thereafter set out to punish the husband for the embarrassment that he had caused her. The only ways she knew of were to deprive him of property (she took all of the furniture) and their son. Her motivation was revenge, pure and simple... I conclude that she never believed that her son had been abused, not when she reported the abuse and not now."
  2. A.N. v A.R. [1995] O.J. 3420 (Prov. Ct.) Magda Prov. J. The mother who initially had de facto custody, alleged that the father was sexually abusing the child. Having first been denied access, the father obtained interim supervised access, and eventually interim custody after the mother had been found to have an "irrational fixation" and that she suffered from "delusional thinking". The mother was convicted of public mischief. However, she again raised the issue of abuse at the custody trial. The judge awarded custody to the father with supervised access to the mother. The criminal conviction did not deter the mother from once more raising the false allegations in the subsequent family law proceeding.

The respect for the judiciary in Canada is at an all time low. That baffles the judges who have launched a public education campaign to convince us that they are right and that those who disagree with them are wrong. Yet, even their own reviews tell that the problem is with the judiciary, not with the general population.

The 1995 Civil Justice Review of Ontario, co-chaired by Justice Blair, had a chapter whose title is "Focus on Family Law," which raised the question of lawyers. Justice Blair said:

"Concern and frustration were expressed about the number of allegations made in affidavits that were not capable of being substantiated in any way. …Lawyers were criticized for their drafting of lengthy, damaging, and sometimes unsupportable affidavit material. The report concluded that the civil justice system in Ontario "is in a crisis situation." [p. 272]

The 1996 Manitoba Civil Justice Review Task Force, chaired by Manitoba MLA David Newman, in the chapter called "Court of Queen's Bench Family Division" addressed false accusations of child sexual abuse in civil justice:

The Task Force heard horror stories about the traumatic impact on the accused person, on the immediate family and children affected by malicious false allegations designed to achieve sole custody, prohibit or restrict visiting privileges, and to punish the other parent. … When false allegations are discovered, strong and effective sanctions are necessary to discourage such conduct....Lawyers, of course, must never assist in making false allegations and should be on guard against becoming the tool or dupe of an unscrupulous client". [p. 20]

The fruitless efforts by Senator Anne Cools to pass a law that would hold lawyers accountable leave no doubt that the laws are not intended to protect the innocent. Rather, they are to be used as tools by the unscrupulous practitioners and their clients.
Judge Sanderson, in a Provincial court of British Columbia summed it all up in R v. Arsenault (15.12. 1998, Docket 24466K):

"I asked Crown Counsel the following question: ... in the interest of the Crown to wanting to at least appear to be even handed, is there some reason why Ms. Hirmer was not charged with the two assaults? On reflection, it was unfair of me to put him on the spot. The question itself is fair, however, because the mere fact of this prosecution sends a very clear message: a woman in a relationship with a man can provoke him, degrade him strike him and throw objects at him with impunity but if he offers the least bit of resistance he will be charged with assault"

Obviously Mr. Justice Sanderson, unlike Madam Chief Justice, is not proud of the direction that our judicial system has decided to follow. I would hazard the guess that he is rather ashamed of it.

Next: Part III, Child Support and Alimony.

White RoseThe White Rose
Thoughts are Free

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Posted 2002 01 05