- Oct 2014
Thou hast written, "How is it possible that one should obey and submit to an unjust government?" By the government which should be obeyed is meant a just government which protects the rights of all its people. It is a constitutional government which is bound by stringent laws.
Tablet from ABDUL-BAHA to J. Isbrucker, Published in Star of the West, 1821, Vol. 11 No. 19
With increasing sadness, I realize that my own country, in many respects, does not live up to the standards mentioned above. For many years, our public administration has not been bound by stringent laws. The effects in the area I deal with, are obvious and tangible. The Social Services, responsible for the protection of children, have resorted to tyranny. Every day, I see horrible examples of miscarriage of justice, where the most ignorant have the final word in legal matters concerning children. The most unknowledgeable public servants have been given such powers that they have great influence on administrative courts, general courts, the police and public prosecutors in all matters related to family law and the protection of children. In fact, the question of legal culpability can be decided upon by political bodies, entirely against the spirit of the law.
I am sorry to say, that I now know of several cases, where the rights of children, who have been battered and even subject to rape by paedophiles, have been utterly ignored, and their testimonies have been completely ignored. I cannot speak of a large, statistically significant number, because I only speak out about cases, which I have studied in depth.
I work as a legal counsel, mainly basing my work on my competence as a researcher in public administration, which guides me when I scrutinize the official investigations that inform the courts. And what I find is horrible: those investigations do not live up to the most elementary demands on a qualified inquiry. And yet, they are considered with the utmost respect by legal authorities, because they have been made by a public agency.
What I see, is the persecution of the loving by the unloving. They even have word for it: if a parent is considered too loving, it is labelled as “symbiosis” – an unwanted state, that should be remedied by putting a child into the care of the most unloving. The investigating authorities, such as the world-famous Parliamentary Ombudsmen, appointed by Parliament to ensure that public authorities comply with the laws and statutes governing their actions, have been reduced to harmlessness, and prefer not to notice the weakening of the Rule of Law.
As a Bahá’í, I do not feel that I have the right to just allow this to happen. I find myself working within the legal system, but experiencing an ever-increasing indifference to facts and arguments. At present, I deal with a case of extreme injustice, where a child has been taken from a loving parent and put into the custody of an abusive parent, where sexual molestation is the rule, based on lieful, absurd and perverted inquiries, accepted by public courts. Finally, the loving parent has decided to protect the child by going into hiding. The public prosecutor, who is in charge of the police inquiry of several well-founded reports of sexual abuse, for the last two years has decided not even to interrogate the suspect. Instead, an arrest warrant has been issued for the protective parent.
In this case, I have studied the documentation and spoken to witnesses and experts. I have followed the child’s process of recovery, since the day that the loving parent stepped in to protect him. His development is consistent with a process of recovery, where at first he was severely traumatized, whereas he now communicates in an adequate manner. The authorities, however, are doggedly pursing the course of one-eyed attribution of guilt on the protective parent. In this process, the social services play a significant role, as they have been instrumental in bringing this situation about, through their involvement in previous police work that goes far beyond the law, and now have no intention to step back, even faced with blatant facts.
This is the most prominent of a number of similar cases, where the Rule of Law seems to have been abolished, and complete arbitrariness and despotism have been established. It is sad to find oneself in positions, where legal decisions are so harmful that one cannot follow them. I deeply resent the idea of extra-legal action, which will increase the level of chaos in society, but cannot allow children to be completely abused by society. However respectfully one treats the authorities in question, they react in lemming-like fashion, preferring to let the lives of one child after the other be ruined, rather than engage in self-scrutiny that could reveal more administrative disasters. The course to take is not an easy one, to say the least.