Soooo... After my blood pressure came down from the airport screeners posting, I foolishly blundered into the Malkin Zone. I like Michelle Malkin, she writes well and usually has interesting stuff, sometimes she gets a little girlie/mom ish, but for the most part, top notch stuff. But today I read this really disturbing thing about an obituary for a Seattle area father (AN UNBELIEVABLE OBITUARY). I'm from the Seattle area, but we were out of town over Thanksgiving and completely missed the story behind the obit.
What Michelle (and Ambra Nykol at Sound Politics) said was that this wonderful glowing obituary (actually a paid death notice - paid for by friends and family) about a man who loved life, lived well, adored his daughters, great father, blah, blah, blah...was about a man who just last week killed those two daughters and then killed himself. On the surface Michelle seemed on the mark. This was outrageous. Glowing praise for a man who murdered his own daughters? In my opinion, UNBELIEVABLY TASTELESS. But that's where Michelle leaves it. She harangues the liberal Northwest apologists (and rightfully so) about a related Seattle Times article, but that's it. No introspection on why an otherwise normal decent guy would do this. Sorry Michelle but that's just a little too shallow for me.
Disclaimer: I'm a divorced Dad with two kids that live with their mother. I have biases and experiences that Michelle doesn't. I see something like this and I see more.
Don't get me wrong. I am in no way condoning what Stephen Byrne did. There is no excuse for his actions. They were wrong on so many levels and in so many ways. So don't think I'm going to defend him. Personally, I hope he burns in Hell for what he did to those girls.
So what I'm I getting at? Back to the question that Michelle didn't ask, but should have. What would push a guy over the edge to do something this terrible?
Two words: Family Court.
Speaking from experience, the Family Court system provides NO JUSTICE and NO FAIRNESS to fathers. In custody disputes, the ovaries win every time. If you have ovaries, you win. If you don't you lose. I know of at least a half a dozen guys that were cleaned out by lying cheating ex's and the ex's got the kids (myself included). The courts did not take their behavior into consideration at all. Not relevant. You simply cannot seperate a child from their mother, regardless of how badly they behave. In some cases where the father can prove drug use or prostitution they have a chance, but only if they can prove it and it usually has to occur in front of the children for it to make a difference. Think I'm kidding? I'm not.
So before you write Stephen Byrne off as just some psychopath child killer, you have to ask "what would push a man to commit this kind of atrocity"? And when are we, as a society, going to do something about it?