Earlier this month Christopher Mathias at Huffington Post connected the Walter Scott case to our new family model in: One-Eighth Of South Carolina Inmates Were Jailed Over Child Support Payments. Walter Scott Was One Of Them.
But Scott, who was killed on Saturday by police officer Michael Slager in North Charleston, South Carolina, had also long struggled to pay child support. In 2008, he went to jail for a full six months after falling behind by $6,800 in child support payments,according to The Associated Press. Scott spent one night in jail in both 2011 and 2012, again because he owed thousands in child support. At the time of Scott’s death, there was awarrant out for his arrest due to failure to make child support payments. (Scott also had a history of convictions and arrests for other offenses, according to The Post And Courier, a Charleston paper.)
The knowledge of the arrest warrant for failed payments is likely what spurred Scott to run from Slager on Saturday during a traffic stop over a broken taillight.
“He said that’s what he would do, he would run, because he’s not going to jail for child support,” Scott’s other brother, Rodney, told MSNBC.
In a video shot by a bystander, Slager can be seen shooting Scott — who was unarmed — eight times as he ran away. Scott died, and Slager is now facing murder charges.
Mathias presents astounding statistics on the number of men who are incarcerated in South Carolina at the order of family court judges:
In 2009, Patterson conducted a survey of 33 county jails in South Carolina, which found that one out of every eight inmates — or 13.2 percent of the inmate population — was behind bars for contempt of civil court after falling behind on child support payments. In Charleston County, where Walter owed his back payments on child support, Patterson’s survey found that over 15 percent of inmates had been imprisoned for not paying child support. In a handful of the other counties studied, the figure was as high as 20 percent.
Men caught in this system do not have basic due process rights:
Turner’s case ended up in front of the Supreme Court, which ruled in a 5-4 decision in 2011 that the right to counsel only applied to criminal cases, not to people in civil or family court proceedings.
As capricious as this all sounds, there is a method to the madness here. These men are being imprisoned to sustain a very recent and profound social revolution. They are being imprisoned to facilitate the destruction of traditional marriage so that a new family structure, one instead based on child support, can take the place of marriage. To understand this, you need to understand the four key objectives which are being achieved by imprisoning so many men.
1) Create the illusion that unwed mothers are not in fact irresponsible welfare queens.
This is crucial to the moral acceptance of unwed motherhood. For our new system to function as desired, single mothers must be absolved of all social stigma. Our new system goes to great lengths to absolve single mothers of stigma, and part of this is removing the stigma of welfare paid to single mothers. The new assumption is that financially secure unwed motherhood is a right of all women, and that any welfare payments unwed mothers receive are really just child support by another name:
Out of the $105 billion in child support debt nationwide, the government claims half so it can seek to recoup the costs of welfare benefits provided to low-income families. Our current welfare program, called Temporary Aid to Needy Families (“TANF”), requires custodial parents applying for benefits to cooperate in establishing child support obligations against the absent parents and to simultaneously assign the resulting child support payments to the government. Mothers, fathers, and children all become government debtors—the mothers and children owe their child support rights and the fathers owe the payments until the welfare benefits are repaid in full.
As Mathias notes, very large numbers of the men in prison for unpaid child support are poor. These men are in prison not because they refused to pay, but because they couldn’t afford to pay. More to the point, they are in prison because unwed motherhood causes tremendous harm to children and our society. In order to absolve the mothers themselves, we must transfer the entire stigma and responsibility to men. A crime against children requires that someone be punished harshly. The men in prison for child support are in this sense sacrificial lambs, being punished in order to absolve all unwed mothers of their moral responsibility for the suffering of their children.
2) Enforce the new quota based system.
A marriage based family structure creates natural incentives for men to work hard to support their families. We have replaced the Western/Christian marriage based family system with a soviet style system, and just like the soviet system our new system requires threats of imprisonment for men who don’t produce as much as the state thinks they should.
3) Facilitate the removal of the father from the home to “empower” women.
The aim of our new child support based family model is to enable women to destroy their families but still receive the benefits which previously only came with marriage. Child support (and the threats of imprisonment which sustain it) is designed to allow women to have children with men who are unfit to be husbands, and/or to eject a husband from the home. South Carolina divorce attorney Gregory S. Forman explains that in cases where the couple is married the child support process generally can’t start until the wife ejects the husband from the home in Five Ways to Get a Spouse Out of the House:
When a marriage is no longer working, one spouse typically wants the other spouse to leave. However, until the parties actually separate, the Family Court lacks the power to determine custody or support issues (though the court can, under circumstances noted below, order one spouse to leave and then set custody and support). Thus, absent a written separation agreement, there are important strategic advantages to staying in the house…
It is quite common for unhappy wives to ask their husbands to leave. Since the husband is typically the person with the financial obligations and the wife will typically be the residential custodial parent, it behooves the husband to remain in the home until he negotiates a separation agreement with financial obligations he can meet and parenting rights he can accept.
Forman goes on to describe the legal strategies wives most commonly use to get their husbands out of the home so the whole process can begin. Number one on his list of legal strategies is for the wife to claim* domestic abuse. This both ejects the father from the home and converts him from (nominal) head of household to child support payer:
The two major advantages to Domestic Abuse actions are that they are provide prompt access to the court and that there is not a high threshold to prove domestic abuse. Hearings must be set within fifteen days of the filing of a petition (§ 20-4-50 (b)) and can be set within 24 hours in an emergency situation. § 20-4-50 (a). The definition of abuse includes “assault, or the threat of physical harm,” so an actual physical harm does not have to be proven. § 20-4-20 (a)(1).
In addition to providing the abused petitioner possession of the marital domicile, the Domestic Abuse order can also provide for temporary spousal and child support, custody and visitation.
Not surprisingly, this process is frequently manipulated by wives in exactly the way it is designed to be used:
Since Domestic Abuse orders are quick and efficient methods for getting a spouse out of the house, they are subject to abuse. Spouses will often attempt to prompt or instigate fights in order to call the police and set up domestic abuse proceedings. Since much domestic abuse becomes a “he said/she said” swearing contest, it is important to protect a client from false allegations of domestic abuse. In situations in which a client might be subjected to false allegations of domestic abuse, the purchase of a small hand-held tape (or even video) recorder is useful. Then, whenever the other spouse attempts to prompt a physical altercation, the client merely needs to hold the recorder up and start recording (announcing “tell it to the nice Family Court Judge, honey” when the client begins recording, adds an entertaining-though not always calming-touch).
Note that men are guilty until proven innocent in this case, and that it is well known that wives will commonly act as aggressors in order to claim victim-hood. Forman’s Marie Antoinette-esque solution to “let them carry tape recorders” overlooks the reality that the system is working precisely as designed. Iraq war vet Joseph Kerr describes how the system is designed in “What Do You Do When A Girl Hits You?”
Finally it was going to end. She wanted to move out of state with the kids and had no interest in discussing sharing custody. “We’re not discussing it, you can’t stop us from leaving. Sign it or I’ll get a lawyer and make you sign it.” She handed me a do-it-yourself version of divorce papers.
I reached out to some divorce lawyers. This life sucks for me, for the kids, for everyone. What do I do? “It’s a game of chicken in your house now,” the he said. “Neither one of you can leave with the kids, and the first one who leaves without them is a step behind in trying to get custody.”
Is there a worse possible way to resolve such a pending disaster?
Then the email confirmation — plane tickets, one adult, two children, one way, leaving soon. Tomorrow morning would be different, but sleeping on the couch was normal. I ended up on the ground next to the stairs. She kicked my head into the solid wood base. I blacked out, came to, stood up, bleeding. My daughter was screaming, “Stop hurting daddy!”
Kerr made the mistake of going to the police after the assault. He was then arrested because all it took was for his wife to claim that he threatened her, and the process kicked in as designed:
“You wife is telling a bit of a different story, as happens a lot in these situations, she says you threatened her.”
“We’re going to take you into custody now.”
“Stand up and put your hands behind your back.”
An hour later I was handcuffed to a hospital bed waiting for CAT scan results to know if my head was bleeding.
After being released from jail with an order to not contact his wife or his children for a year, and with his bank accounts drained, Kerr asked his lawyer what he should have done in this incident. Her response:
“Run. Run and don’t go to the police.”
Kerr tells us this wasn’t his wife’s first assault against him:
She grabbed me and ripped my shirt. Her nails cut my face. I bled. I tried to walk out the door. She blocked the door. I was a gym-every-day, active duty Marine, fearing someone a fraction of my size. If she had a penis I’d have a dozen ways to put her on the ground. Instead, I was left to sneak out a bedroom window and spend the night in a parking lot.
This is a well known pattern, as Web MD notes in their article Help for Battered Men**:
“We tell men if they have to be in an argument, do it in a room with two doors so they can leave; a lot of times a woman will block the door, the man will try to move her, and that will be enough for him to get arrested.”
In the past our family structure was designed to keep families intact. Our new family structure is designed primarily to break them apart.
4) Dis-empower husbands and fathers in order to empower wives and mothers.
The overarching goal of the new system is to empower women, and in order to do this power must be taken from men and given to women. Fundamentally, the objective is to create a system where women can become mothers without being beholden to a man. The most obvious incarnations of this involve single motherhood. However, the system is also designed achieve the same goal in a more subtle way, by making husbands powerless for those women who wish to remain nominally married. All of the machinery designed to crush the father and remove him from the home can also be used to change the power dynamics within marriage. The mere threat of using this cruel system is as feminist economists Wolfers and Stevens delightedly explain a “potent tool” for wives to use to gain power over their husbands (emphasis mine):
The mechanism examined in this paper is a change in divorce regime and we interpret the evidence collected here as an empirical endorsement of the idea that family law provides a potent tool for affecting outcomes within families.
*Forman says “prove” instead of claim, but then goes on to describe how claims are generally taken as proof.
**Archived here in case the article is edited to remove the advice.
See also Vox Day’s post Child support is modern debt slavery