Last week MLO reported Barry Williams President of Lone Fathers would be addressing the parliamentary inquiry into ‘A better family law system to support and protect those affected by family violence’ in Canberra. Yes, shocking isn’t it? There are other things on the agenda besides the same-sex marriage fiasco.
MLO hears there has been an interesting string of events quietly playing out at the inquiry.
George Chistensen, who is possibly the only pro-family politician, has not been attending as often as you may hope. On crucial days, such as when Hetty Johnson, CEO of Bravehearts spoke he wasn’t there. Why? Something about scheduling clashes. Let’s hope it wasn’t another same-sex marriage emergency.
On one particular day Diana Bryant, Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia and John Pascoe, another senior judge were scheduled for questioning.
An hour or so before they were due to be grilled, a politician connected to the inquiry considered questioning them on a key point. One crucial question set to be put to Bryant was, ‘How do you know the family court is actually acting in the best interest of the child?’
After all, isn’t this the shaky backbone on which all Family Court decision justification supposedly relies on? The ‘best interest’ claim is an empty chalice into which any well meaning but ultimately misguided poison may be poured.
The second crucial question set to be asked was, ‘How might this be affected by domestic violence policy?’
Seriously. Why is no one challenging these dodgy stepping-stones?
Where are the confident independent thinkers?
Where is the proof that being alienated from fathers is in the best interest of children?
It seems one mild argument over what the parents are going to watch on TV is enough to rip a father from a child’s life, sometimes permanently. “We do it because we care for the child,” comes the cry. Really? Who are these people actually caring for in such common scenarios? It’s unlikely to be the child.
Truth is, sometimes what’s best for the child is not being with his or her mother. That is equally true as it not always being best that the child is with father.
But the Family Court doesn’t want to accept that, does it?
It’s very interesting that both Bryant and Pascoe suddenly excused themselves from Canberra before answering these key questions. Yes, just minutes before they were due to answer such questions, they hotfooted out of town.
Both were urgently required elsewhere. Miraculous, isn’t it?
So, we still don’t have answers to the simple and obvious questions – and we’d like them. This inquiry will be running for some time so let’s hope they’re called back.
Heartbreakingly, the real elephant in parliament is that we all know this isn’t a fair and just inquiry.
We all know there’s a pre-determined agenda.
We all know this isn’t about giving good men a fair go, or more importantly doing what’s best for the children.
This is, as always, about feminist power and control in the courts.
What we want to hear are answers to the real questions - and those raised by Williams.
We want to address the unfair one-sided bias of the law and discuss the damage that removal of perjury in family court has done in Australia.
Come on, speak up