Friday, August 14, 2009

Guilty Until Proven Innocent

Below is an excerpt of a real life event experienced by William N. Grigg as related in a post he wrote called "Hotlined":

“Grab some clothes and get into the van, now."

For an instant, that directive, and the tone in which it was issued, had the opposite of its intended effect: Korrin and our five older children, momentarily paralyzed by shock, looked at me in alarm. There was something in both the tone of my voice, and the expression on my face, that was new and a little frightening. None of them had seen my "game face" before. They were seeing it now.

Just seconds earlier, Korrin and I had been confronted on our doorstep by two very nice, well-dressed women who informed us that an anonymous "child endangerment" complaint had been filed with the Child Protective Services. Read more . . .

Mr. Grigg's experience is not even close to being an isolated event, and though we can take comfort that the story ended well for him, I think we would be foolish to automatically assume that that will always be the case.

Below is an excerpt from "What So Proudly We Hailed":

They came in, right through my front door, all seven of them – one social worker and five cops and a DHS agent.

The social worker, a flinty woman with short blonde hair, read off some kind of warrant while two of the cops grabbed Matty and Brooklyn and pulled them out the front door. Lisa was screaming, flailing her arms at the two men who were restraining her, and I vividly remember seeing the splashes of her spit and her tears as the droplets landed on the black body armor of the police.

And I just stood there and watched. I didn’t do a thing. Not a single thing. I just stood there and watched as my beautiful children vanished through the front door. I saw the terror in their wide eyes as they looked to me for an answer, and I heard their high pitched, panicked voices as they begged their daddy to help them as they were being dragged away.

And I did nothing. I stood there, just as a good boy should, just as they wanted & expected me to.

I like to think that I did the noble thing. That I didn’t react because there was an assault rifle aimed at my chest and I didn’t want my children to see their father gunned down in front of their eyes. But part of me doesn’t believe that. Part of me thinks that I did nothing simply because I was – and still am – a coward.

If you think that sounds unrealistic, far-fetched, or even downright ridiculous, it's only because you didn't hear about this when it happened a year and a half ago: SWAT officers invade home, take 11-year-old at gunpoint


MamaHen said...

That's a good article. Gladly, that first "episode" turned out well. I know though, that WAY too many don't. We homeschool, and get a very early start on our day. That means that my children, who are motivated to get their work done, get done quite early. Next week, all the neighborhood kids will be in school. We are going to have to find more things to do, to keep my children busy, so they aren't drawing attention to the fact that they aren't "in school." This will be the first time that we really homeschooled in a neighborhood (UGH!) so it should be interesting. Though, I think I have made friends with most of the community guards/police, (Black berry cobbler guys? LOL) so I don't expect too much trouble. Of course, that doesn't mean that I don't have HSLDA's emergency number on speed dial.....

Blaine Staat said...

We live right in town, so we have the same concerns. The best thing to do is to make sure other adults see your children and get to know them a little. Many people I know who have initially questioned homeschooling have since started questioning their existing beliefs about education once they spent some time around my kids.