Class Dismissed

by Paul Goetz

The nation seems to be accumulating more and more of two distinctly related types of people, organizations, and agencies:

  • one, disgruntled parents, many of whom have joined some sort of organization in an effort to help them with their grievances, and also many who have just vanished, or self destructed;
  • and two, organizations and agencies, both governmental and private, with a distinct symbiosis, aligned against the first group.

I’ve heard both sides present their positions in various forums, and the positions never seem to change over the years. Each side just seems to get bigger and bigger and bigger. One of the things I’ve noticed when talking with others, or just listening or reading, is that, when discussing one of the issues, most seem to have gotten caught up in the rhetoric that has been essentially forced on them by the government and the media. And all the discourse is limited by using the rhetorical labels, such as “custodial parent,” “non-custodial parent,” “child support,” “obliger,” “absent parent,” “visitation,” “custody,” etc. etc. etc.

Over the years, in all sorts of court cases, articulate judges have developed a way of distinguishing between the substance of something (such as a particular law) and what it says that it is – sometimes referred to as the difference between substance and form.

It seems to me that if one can get rid of all the labels and the built in implications of each, one gets a different perspective of the situation, and more at the heart of the substance of the issues. When viewing the situation as freely as possible from all the constraints of the labels, it appears quite clearly that the government has created two distinct classifications of parents. (By “parent,” for simplicity and for the sake of this article, I’m referring to the biological parents, whether they are married, divorced, separated, or never married, and with no distinction as to male or female.)

    Starting from a financial perspective one finds:

  • CLASS I – those parents who are free to provide for their children whatever amount of financial support they choose, in whatever form they chose – they are not obligated by the government (other than their implied natural obligation to provide necessities) to provide any particular specified amount of money, whether it be weekly, monthly, annually, or whatever.
  • CLASS II – those parents who are mandated by the government (by some sort of official looking court order) to pay a specified amount of money on a regular basis to some other person or organization allegedly in support of their children – in other words they have been stripped of the various freedoms and liberties and all related aspects allowed those in CLASS I.

The two classes are not naturally occurring. They are a sole creation of the government – usually as a result of one of a child’s parents using the power of the government to force the other parent into CLASS II. (The one parent then remains a CLASS I parent, and simultaneously gains numerous varied benefits that they did not otherwise possess, including various forms of governmental aid and assistance not available to the CLASS II parent.)

The disgruntled parents to whom I referred at the outset are mostly members of CLASS II. Some are divorced, some are separated, some were never married, and some didn’t even know they were a parent until their child was getting older. (And there is also a growing number of supporters of the CLASS II members, such as a new spouse.) But most didn’t volunteer to be put into CLASS II. Many (although certainly not all) would gladly continue to live a productive life as a conscientious CLASS I parent.

In many instances, however, they were not presented with any alternative to being transformed into a CLASS II parent by either their own lawyer, or the government. They were not told that it would be extremely costly (often costing far more money than they even had) to try to remain a CLASS I parent, nor they were told that no matter how much money they spent the government would probably still force them into CLASS II status. Many spent a substantial sum of money in legal fees that could have been used to support their children, yet were still forced into CLASS II status. Many just submitted to a larger force they had no money to fight, or knew they couldn’t defeat.

There are some parents who, given a choice, and explained all the ramifications, might prefer to be a CLASS II parent, just as there are some parents who, no matter what class they are in, are not good parents. But there are many who don’t like CLASS II. For them, being forced into CLASS II status is humiliating and demeaning enough all in itself. It is dehumanizing, and it signifies loss of freedom, loss of liberty, loss of control. Buying their children a new bicycle or a pair of shoes, or simply feeding them does not count as “support” for most CLASS II parents. Maintaining a motor vehicle and driving their children to soccer or gymnastics practice does not count as “support” for most CLASS II parents.

However, it just continues to get worse. After the government has forced a parent into CLASS II it then passes Special Laws that only apply to the parents that it has forced into CLASS II:

  • Do all parents face revocation of their driver’s license if they do not provide a particular amount of financial support for their children ?? – NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Do all citizens face revocation of their driver’s license over an issue that is totally unrelated to their ability to operate a motor vehicle and public safety in general? NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Do all parents face forced periodic review by government agencies of how much money they are earning and determinations of whether they should pay more to some other person or agency ?? – NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Do all parents face mandated regular increases (with no court hearings, and no regard to how much money they are earning) in the amounts they are forced to pay others? NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Do all parents face jail if they fail to provide a specified amount of financial support for their children?? NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Do all parents face forced withholding of financial support for children from a paycheck? – NO, only CLASS II parents.
  • Apart from IRS records, does the government care and keep tabs on where all parents work? – NO, only on CLASS II parents.
  • Does the government pass special laws that allow its own non-lawyer bureaucrats to bring charges and argue issues in its courts in front of judges against all parents? – NO, only against CLASS II parents.
  • Does the government hire mammoth high tech and well funded and paid private organizations to hunt down and enforce government determined obligations against all parents? – NO, only against CLASS II parents.
  • Does the government utilize public money to post the names and pictures of all parents on the Internet who have allegedly transgressed some government demand related to their children? NO, only for CLASS II parents.
  • What percentage of the people in jails and prisons have had no opportunity to present their case to a jury? VERY FEW – that is, except for CLASS II parents.
  • Does the government ever periodically review whether its determination of the “best interests of the children” is working, or actually is in their best interests?? NO, it only reviews issues related to the amount of money it is suctioning from CLASS II parents. Neither the amount of money any parent is willing to pay or able to pay has anything to do with the “best interests of the children” as defined by the government’s own criteria.

And on and on and on. It’s an incredible snowballing effect, often resulting in death of those forced into CLASS II, sometimes quickly and violently, and sometimes slowly but prematurely, or death to others as a result of the stress, humiliation, agony, and desperation associated with forced CLASS II status. There are many other destructive societal effects, such as parents who have “disappeared” or “vanished,” or parents who are imprisoned without trial by jury rather than helping their children develop into responsible, productive adults.

I have not seen any actual statistics (most likely because there are some who would prefer that they not be known), but it appears that a very high percentage of domestic related murders and suicides of children and parents are related to situations where a parent was (or is in the process of being) forced into CLASS II status. The situations and events vary, and many are never explained (and some are never even known), but they often occur after the parent’s boiling or breaking point threshold has been reached or surpassed on one or more occasions – sometimes resulting in a volatile eruption of anger and rage (often lashing out at seemingly intangible forces), and sometimes ending obscurely in the tears of solitude. Some are related to the children of a CLASS II parent being withheld from them while the government does nothing, or even assists, and some are the result of the full realization of the futility of what has happened to them, and the frustration with their helplessness to do anything about it.

It seems to me that forcing parents into two distinct classes which are then treated drastically different, while also subjecting one class to additional special laws that apply only to them, and then hounding and effectively clubbing them until the end of time (or until they self destruct – often taking a few others along the way) is one of the most odious and despicable forms of government known – with marked similarities to those of Adolf Hitler and the Nazis – not to mention against the law. However, I guess it’s not surprising from a government that also secretly ran radiation experiments, syphilis experiments, and psychedelic drug experiments on its own citizens.

Maybe it’s time to end this latest experiment too, and get the class dismissed.

Copyright © 1998, 2005 Paul F. Goetz