Earlier today, I received an email from one of my favorite muthas out here in this crazy cyber world. She (who happens to be Oprah's biggest fan) asked me whether or not I (who just so happen to be Rocky's biggest fan) had seen yesterday's show.

I, of course, said no.

For some strange reason, the only time I ever happen to catch Oprah is when she's showcasing some weird celebrity who enjoys jumping on and off guest couches while rambling incoherently;* but it seems that my decision to flip on by the Queen of Talk in favor of the afternoon double feature of Murder She Wrote on A&E is causing me to miss the many great and thought-provoking segments that call for social change and reformation (issues very close to my heart as you all know).

Rocky (The HeadMutha) then told me all about yesterday's show, Kidnapped as a Child:Why I Didn't Return, and Oprah's quest to see that the government speeds along funding for the the recently passed Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.

I just called it "Oprah's quest", but what I really meant to say was: OUR QUEST.

Yes, OUR QUEST. Our quest as parents to see that our children are protected from the most vicious of all predators. Our quest to ensure that those who would do harm to our innocents are stopped in their tracks. Our quest to make this world a safe and loving place for each and every one of us.

Our Quest to speak out for those too young to do so for themselves.

Our Quest to have those silenced voices heard.

Rocky and I (and, of course, Oprah) ask that you join us on this important mission- this quest-  to protect our children.

Please, take a moment and send a letter to Congress encouraging  demanding that the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act be fully funded and in place TODAY.

All it takes is the click of a mouse: BE HEARD.

The provided letter is a template and can be easily modified to your liking to address those specifics that you find important. Looking back over the transcripts and blurbs provided on Oprah's website, I found myself in a very odd position... The position of agreement with Bill O'Reilly who is encouraging demanding and advocating that the punishment fit the crime. I, myself, feel that a lot of our current resources and focus are too concentrated on those truly misdemeanor crimes (consenting teenage offenders, sodomy laws between consenting adults often used to persecute same sex couples, et cetera), and those crimes that are truly heinous are often horrifyingly hidden in the mix. Through both the template letter and my own additions to it, I made sure to convey my concerns and my firm belief that the punishment fit the crime. Be sure to do the same.

We will also be spreading this message via our personal blogs and ask that all of you "blogging mommas" do the same. Post something here at the cafe, on your MySpace, wherever! Just post something! Feel free to visit my (The Only Thing) or Rocky's (Mutherhood Ain't for Sissies) blog for an example or to simply comment and give an even bigger voice to the cause.

Again:

All it takes is the click of a mouse: BE HEARD.

 

 

 

* The above "crazy celebrity" reference was in no way meant to offend or poke fun at any one person in particular. In other words, please don't kill me, Mr. Tom Cruise.

 

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Comments:

Mrs.E
Feb. 23, 2007 at 12:39 AM Awesome.....I'm on it!!

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Falli...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 12:43 AM

Well, since I've got both of you fine ladies as friends, consider it... double done. 

Thanks for posting this.  I actually saw the show yesterday and was sick, just sick, about it.  

No one has the right to take the innocence away from our kids.  The cycle of abuse is no excuse.  

Thanks ladies! 

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EPhil...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 12:44 AM thank you for the info.  i set it up for my meetup groups to send their letters! this is especially close to me since a sex offender/pervert moved in across the street from us and no one informed the neighborhood!

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rshll...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 2:34 AM

Courtney, you are reading my mind. I too watched that Oprah show. I was even going to post about it. As you know, if you read my response to your "welcome" post for the IJA, this is a social problem that I feel needs to be addressed. Actually, it needed to be addressed 100 years ago. Thank you so much for getting us all on the ball.

I want to say to anyone who watched this show, Bill O'Rielly was not exgagerating one bit about the lack of prison time that these monsters are sentenced. It seems too shocking to be true. But it is true.

When I was 13, I was sexually abused by my step dad. It only happened once. He just simply picked the wrong child. I was never easily intimidated. Because of my bravery, I also had two ribs cracked in the process.

We went through the whole big hooraw.  The first court date was a small hearing in which only my mother, me, and the DA were present. This is when my mom found out that he had a record, a long one. As a matter of fact, when the judge asked mom who her husband was, she told him, and he responed, "THE Jon Doe?"

We then found out that he had served in all 8 years in prison. He spent a two years in prison for a statuatory rape conviction, and the other terms were drug charges. To say that we were shocked is putting it lightly.

I actually went to court until I was 16 years old. (3 years) He was offered several plea bargains in which he would accept and recount. (I think they have 90 days to do that, maybe 30) Also he jumped bond a few times, so it would take the police a while to arrest him on the bench warrant and the whole thing would start over again. The whole process was pure hell for me as it is for any child. It is just as emotionally damaging to go to court as it is to be abused in the first place.

In the end, even with a proir record they gave him 90 days in the COUNTY jail. Deferred even. Defrerred means that they take off the days you have spent waiting for trial off of your sentence. The worst part about it is though, this sentence came after they offered him a plea bargain of lude molestation. He accepted, then changed his mind. So then they offered him another plea bargain for Injury of a Minor Child. He accepted. That was the end.

He went on to rape a 24 year old woman with her 18 month old baby in the backseat of her car at knifepoint for hours. A couple weeks later he raped 3, 14 year old girls at the same time at knifepoint for most of the night. They sentenced him to 140 years. The judge counted every instance of rape, sodomy, and rape by instumentation and gave him the maximum for each. But, he is up for parole in 5 years. Because it is not a capital crime, they cannot deny him opportunity for parole.

I don't know how some of these judges and defense attourneys sleep at night. I know that I have sure layed awake many many nights.

Moms, I beg of you to actually do this, and not just say you will. Do it now, not later.

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raven...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 7:57 AM What I love about you Courtney, is that you pull me out of my self-absorbed bubble and help me be a better parent.  Thank you.

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ksbon...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 8:12 AM

Courtney!

Thanks for sending this journal post out.  People wonder why I keep such a tight rein on my twins--one of them being autistic and not being able to sense danger the way an average child could.

And thank you rshllsean for making it real and baring your soul--thank you for fighting back!

And Ladies/Moms--you will thank yourselves when you contact Congress--the lives you save may be that of your own and those whom you love!

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CEastep
Feb. 23, 2007 at 8:17 AM Thanks again Courtney! I think everyone should watch that show! The least we can do is to write to our congress!

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ncmomto2
Feb. 23, 2007 at 8:48 AM I'm on it.  Thanks rilshean for sharing your personal story --- makes it all the more real and infuriating!

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Jen0618
Feb. 23, 2007 at 9:04 AM I really like Bill OReilly and I think punishments should fit the crime.....this is terrible what people do and then get away with......it's an outrage.  My kids are glued to my hip, they are never outta my site! 

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mommy...
Feb. 23, 2007 at 10:09 AM This is a great thing you guys are doing.  It needs to be out their and dealt with right away.  Good job guys!!

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