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(13,260 posts)
Wed Apr 24, 2024, 04:22 PM Apr 24

"Child Abuse by Omission: How American Law Holds Mothers Responsible for Their Partners' Crimes"

"Child Abuse by Omission: How American Law Holds Mothers Responsible for Their Partners’ Crimes"

Criminalizing a woman for her male partner's abusive behavior toward her children is another type of victim blaming. (Image: Jared Rodriguez / Truthout)

Are mothers responsible for the abuse their children suffer at the hands of their male partners? While most of us recognize the complexity involved in trying to protect a child or anyone else from an abuser, the law takes a far less nuanced view — particularly when it concerns mothers. As a legal scholar who studies how the law is applied unevenly to men and women, I have pored over hundreds of gut-wrenching child abuse cases and observed patterns of prosecution that betray a striking gender asymmetry.


The earliest reported prosecution of child abuse by omission, Palmer v. State, goes back to 1960. The case exemplifies the ways in which mothers are seen as uniquely responsible for a child’s well-being. It also shows how social factors are ignored in favor of vilifying and convicting a mother.

Barbara Ann Palmer became pregnant at 15. After a brief marriage to the baby’s father, she returned to live with her parents. Shortly afterward, she began a relationship with a man five years her senior and relocated to another state with him. Tragedy struck one month later when her daughter was beaten to death by her boyfriend.

Palmer was charged with and convicted of involuntary manslaughter. The Maryland Court of Appeals upheld Palmer’s conviction, finding both that Palmer had been criminally negligent and that her failure to act was the actual and proximate cause of her child’s death. Despite determining that her boyfriend’s actions were the “direct and immediate” cause of the child’s death, the court found that his violence did not constitute an “intervening efficient cause” sufficient to extinguish Palmer’s responsibility for her child’s death.

-----snip to end:https://truthout.org/articles/child-abuse-by-omission-how-american-law-holds-mothers-responsible-for-their-partners-crimes/

Note: first "paragraph" was caption of picture. Included 4th paragraph at the bottom of the blockquote. Minor edit to get rid of old signature line.

Any additional comment would be...

Go read the article. Trigger warning.

Watch the movie Gaslight. It's a process; sometimes years in the making. How to destroy the life and mind of the "woman of your dreams." Trigger warning. Violence against women happens in black and white and without smacking a face. I knew. Did you?

Watch The Burning Bed. It only took 20 years of brutal beatings, ignorant stupid texas "social workers," etc. I may scream. Trigger warning.

Watch Sleeping with the Enemy. Rich pricks brutalize women, too. Gee. Who knew. Trigger warning.

Read these 3 books:

The Mis-measure of Woman - historically information about how many decades women's issues have been dismissed as too inconvenient too controversial. Don't bother with the trigger warning. It's chapter 5. ISBN: 0-671-66274-0

No Visible Bruises: What We Don't Know About Domestic Violence Can Kill Us. Self explanatory. Of course.
ISBN: 978-1-63557-096-4

Final book/movie. If' you're not ready to...and...a reminder...
speaking freely: unlearning the lies of the fathers' tongues. isbn:0-8077-6244-X

Finally - in closing - a reminder...

“Remember what you must do
when they undervalue you,
when they think
your softness is your weakness,
when they treat your kindness
like it is their advantage.

You awaken
every dragon,
every wolf,
every monster
that sleeps inside of you
and you remind them
what hell looks like
when it wears the skin
of a gentle human.”

― Nikita Gill, Wild Embers: Poems of Rebellion, Fire and Beauty

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"Child Abuse by Omission: How American Law Holds Mothers Responsible for Their Partners' Crimes" (Original Post) Cerridwen Apr 24 OP
Blame women first... dlk Apr 24 #1
Hey, dlk. Thank you for replying. Cerridwen Apr 24 #2
Hi, thanks for reaching out dlk Apr 24 #3


(11,880 posts)
3. Hi, thanks for reaching out
Wed Apr 24, 2024, 11:12 PM
Apr 24

Interesting, indeed. Your post was informative. Women are still invisible in too many ways. Hope you’re doing well, too.

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