NCFM is an educational tax exempt corporation. Why? Because we believe education is the key to changing the world into a better place for all of us. There’s no better example than that found in the story below by one of our long term and loyal members …
I LOVE teaching!
I’m teaching my second semester of family law to paralegals at Pasadena City College (one night class). Its 45 students, 90% female. Last night we covered domestic violence. As you can imagine, I had alot to say. I explained the history, from Erin Pizzey in England to Patricia Overberg in Los Angeles County.
I showed the latest stats straight from the Centers for Disease Control showing more than 1 in 4 women and 1 in 5 men were domestic violence victims, and 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men were severe domestic violence victims. I showed how the Associated Press covered that study by totaling ignoring male victims. I showed this Channel 13 news video covering my filing of the lawsuit against the State of CA on behalf of 4 battered me. Then I showed this ABC news video covering our appellate victory 3 years later in Woods v. Horton. I talked about how the L.A. Times and Daily Journal, at that time (and still for the L.A. Times), were totally biased and reactionary on this issue and refused to cover it accurately. And I talked about how the State of California now is not giving sufficient answers to our Public Records Act request regarding the enforcement of Woods, so there may need to be further action.
To be fair and balanced, I gave credit to feminists for bringing the issue to light when attitudes were different. But I talked about how it was misframed to neglect male victims, and still is, often intentionally. I talked about how, when we filed the lawsuit, there was a huge backlash by those who falsely claimed I was trying to “shut down” or “take from” DV shelters, making *me* out to be the bad one, when it was me who told the courts they can “reform” rather than invalidate the unconstitutional statutes (the appellate court agreed and did so). How they said male victims should “build their own shelters,” even though men pay over half of the taxes that fund these shelters. And how they claimed I was trying to force the mixing of sexes in shelters, when I suggested hotel vouchers at minimum.
The class loved the topic and asked excellent legal questions, so much that we’re behind now. Students hung around after class to talk.
Thank you Pasadena City College for this opportunity. Students are learning about this and I’ll never stop telling it.