F4J heroes need help/ Students Risk Arrest/ Murtari Update & Your FEEDBACK

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From: John Murtari (murtarij@yahoo.com)
Date: Thu Nov 26 2009 - 14:26:53 EST

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Good People & People of Faith,

This message has info on:

1. Student sit-in - risk arrest over tuition!?
2. Chalk effort continues - can you be there Monday?
3. Thanksgiving - in the words of Lincoln.
4. F4J Activists: Fisher & Tenn - what's it take?  Help.
5. Your FEEDBACK - pro & con!

1. Student sit-in - risk arrest over tuition!?
I couldn't help but marvel over this report and the TREMENDOUS press
coverage it received.  There is a great strength in numbers:

    BERKELEY, Calif. -- Students occupied a building Friday on the
    campus of the University of California, Berkeley, in an escalation
    of protests over large fee increases at UC campuses statewide that
    echoed the unrest here during the 1960s. The occupation ended
    peacefully late Friday evening.

    The takeover by as many as 50 students and their sympathizers took
    place before dawn Friday, a day after the UC Board of Regents
    approved a 32% increase in student fees to cope with California's
    long-running fiscal crisis...

    Friday afternoon, an estimated 500 other students and supporters
    assembled around the building, despite a driving rain. They banged
    drums, chanted and cheered as some of the occupants of the
    building used megaphones from a second-floor window to shout


What about us as parents?  Most lost more than just a little money to
the System -- we lost our basic dignity as parents to our own kids?
We also have a lot more to lose than these students did if arrested --
funny how that math works out? Worth it?

2. Chalk effort continues - can you be there Monday?
I (John Murtari) was released again yesterday, for details see

I'll be going back on Monday (maybe Tuesday if that is a better day
for people to join me).  That would make it four counts, each is a
misdemeanor with a max penalty of one year in jail?  I certainly don't
expect the max, the little chalk message probably takes all of 60
seconds to wipe off the building -- but I wouldn't be surprised at all
if the Village Judge gave me at least 30 days on each offense.

WHY KEEP GOING BACK? I keep hoping and praying for the moment when
another Mom & Dad are willing to join the effort.  Then we will be at
the threshold of a real Civil Rights movement.  It is certainly worth
the risk.  Interested?  My contact info at the bottom of this message!

CAN'T RISK ARREST?  You are welcome to join me for an hour in a silent
picket outside the building.  Let me know. See link above for details.

3. Thanksgiving - in the words of Lincoln.
We all recognize Lincoln as one of the greatest Presidents, but in
1863, when he wrote the following message, it would be fair to say he
was 'hated' by a large portion of the public.  The Civil War was
unpopular, there were anti-draft riots, and 'winning' the war was not
a certainty.

Was Lincoln perfect? No. But what made him a great man was a sense of
humility, his commitment to ideals, and even though engaged in a Civil
War -- he did not 'hate' the people of the South.  It may seem
strange, but when we embrace our own failings (as Lincoln did below),
we become more tolerant of others and more willing to sacrifice for
our goals:


The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the
blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies... In the midst of a
Civil War of unequaled magnitude and severity... Population has
steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in
the camp, the siege and the battle-field... 

They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing
with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly,
reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by
the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in
every part of the United States ... to set apart and observe the last
Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our
beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.

And I recommend ... they do also, with humble penitence for our
national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all
those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the
lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and
fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the
wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent
with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony,
tranquility and Union.

4. F4J Activists: Fisher & Tenn - what's it take?  Help.
A couple of parents, Paul Fisher & Donald Tenn, from F4J were involved
in a high-visiblity protest a few months ago:


I sent them both a message asking for some details on their experience
and how people could help (they were given a hefty fine to pay!). You
can help "chip in" at these two sites:


Got the following from Paul Fisher <pfisher@pobox.com>:

> I feel that I accomplished everything I set out to do.  I did not
> intend for things to get as extreme as they did.  This was to be a
> proof of concept event.  I did not set out to become a martyr or
> even a hero, for that matter, I just wanted to see things get
> rolling.  To much talk and not enough action, as they say.  I had
> simply had enough of everything, courts, orgs, and complaints.
> We split the restitution costs, but I was not charged with the 4th
> day of crane rental.  That was not a factor in the plea.  If people
> are willing... I'll accept help with the costs.  I owe $2,400 +
> court costs.  I don't know the total for court costs yet, but I can
> cover some of the expense myself.
> http://fishercase.chipin.com/paul-fisher
> ... We proved that this type of action generates substantial media
> coverage.  We proved, from post trial conversations, that the jury
> is generally sympathetic.  I also learned that child support arrears
> can undermine that sympathy with some jurors, regardless of the
> explanation.  I learned the inner-workings of the public defender
> and prosecutor apparatus, as well as many manipulation tactics any
> future protesters should anticipate.  Above all we broke the seal,
> and hopefully brushed aside some of the fear that has prevented
> others from taking action.  We set the bar high, but not to high.
> The event provided a substantial gem of wisdom.  If you are going to
> engage in civil disobedience with someone, know them well and be
> comfortable with them.  Determine who will lead and who will follow,
> or if you will share the burden.  If you are not on the same page
> and motivated by the same objectives expect turbulence.  It can be a
> very slow process and involves a great deal of faith or else a great
> disregard for your own future when the stakes get high.  The two are
> not as similar as you may think.  If you can, partner with a like
> minded person, as it will matter when things heat up.  It is a very
> good idea to have a protest partner for many different reasons.
> Suggestions and/or lessons learned.  (I'm sure this list will grow
> and I will eventually publish it somewhere on the internet.)

[ Edited for length ]
> Safety first.  Cops rescuing superman is far to irresistible to the
> media.

> Photograph the scene during the event, and transmit the images to
> someone offsite. (photo messaging is easiest method.)

> Have a plan and stick to it.

> Don't cause any physical harm to anything. Be prepared to prove it.

> Public defenders are not your friends they work for the state and
> are not interested in your case.  They don't want the extra work so
> they will resent you if you go to trial.

> Remember to be pleasant to the public servants involved, some  
> actually respect what you are doing. They are just not permitted to  
> show it.

> Be gracious to your support team.

> Make a checklist of everything you need, you will get excited and  
> inevitably forget something.

> Use a short message with very big letters.  The message should leave  
> no ambiguity about your cause or your position.  This is a protest  
> sign, not a witty advertisement.

> Hire a private attorney before the event if you can, well worth the  
> money.

> Multiple short protests by multiple people send a greater message  
> than a few long ones with the same people.  However, no protests say  
> we are content with how things are.

> You don't need to be affiliated or even endorsed by an organization
> to succeed. Remember, Rosa Parks was simply fed up and the change
> came after she took action.  This movement has plenty of people to
> lend you a hand, what it lacks is people willing to step up and put
> words into actions.

> Enjoy the new experience, remember the details, even the parts that
> are not pleasant.  You will meet very few people who share your
> experience, and plenty who will want to know more.

5. Your FEEDBACK - pro & con!

--- Scott Lewis <r.scott.lewis@gmail.com>

> GO FOR IT JOHN!  Best wishes...I just contacted your Assembly
> person.

> To be successful in your efforts, you must read and understand the
> book titled, "THE HOLLOW HOPE: Can Courts Bring About Social
> Change?"  by Gerald N. Rosenberg. It provides strategies for us to
> move forward. I just learned of it at JJAY.

--- Chris Carter <cc_sc5150@yahoo.com>

> In my opinion, John Murtari is a publicity hound. Do you like being
> arrested? You are not gonna beat cps. They are ba$tards, but they
> are powerful. I wish nothing but bad things for social workers, they
> took my son, and I hope they all burn in Hell, but I think you are
> doing nothing but improving your long rap sheet. Please take me off
> of your email recipient list. I am very sick of hearing about your
> MLK like crusade. They are the government, and they suck, but God
> will judge them, and you are only hurting your self.

You may be right in what you say and a lot of people probably agree
with you that it is hopeless.  But I try to have Faith that things are
going to turn around, but it's going to take loving sacrifice for what
we believe in.  It worked in the past,
http://www.AKidsRight.Org/civil.htm -- maybe it will work now?

--- Americas Children <americaschildren@yahoo.com>

> your a hero john as u know. I L.O.V.e your sacrifice and all calls
> were made on your behalf 2 the persons listed. Believe me bro your
> children and this cause is worth every BIT of the sacrifices you
> make. See U later Hero

---  Mark A. Adams JD/MBA <markadamsatty@hotmail.com>

> I applaud your efforts to raise awareness about corruption in the
> family courts.  I couldn't open the email that you sent yesterday
> about being arrested.  Please send it again, and I'll spread the
> news of your action.

--- Dan <danvandyke@peoplepc.com>

> Fight the power and good luck to you. There are more men than you
> know standing behind you and your beliefs.

--- Israel Lettelier <privateeye4justice@yahoo.com>

> John doesn't get it yet does he?  If the state can get John declared
> mentally incompetent, they can keep him from putting up with him
> everytime they let him out of jail, because, then, they can commit
> him and sedate him until he is completely out of his mind.  What
> surprises me the most, is that John, a man that complains the system
> is unjust, but yet cannot understand, or rather, is shocked, that
> the DA, state, lawyer, or judicial system would go to these lengths.

> ... I think John is misconstruing the principles of Ghandi and Martin
> Luther King, Jr., when he tries to justify his actions and his
> approach to reform.  First, it was to get the attention of Hillary
> Clinton, who, of all people, is so fake, and all about herself and
> no one else, and is a feminist of feminists.  Where did any of it
> get John?  What child has it helped, or father?  How has it stopped
> injustice?

> ...Why can't John, come up with, or support a different approach
> that is working?  Yes it is true and happens everyday, that someone
> does something off the wall or corny enough for a long enough
> period, that someone might just write a book about it and then make
> a movie.  Will this happen, and if it does, will it happen before
> John's son Dominic is an adult, or John is in a mental hospital or
> in the ground?

> John, you are now unemployed.  You are intelligent.  Go to law
> school, and let the government pay for it.  Practice some law; then
> become a trial judge, and make some rulings that will put an end to
> injustice.....make the case law...you could have already graduated
> from law school, while you have been wasting your time chalking.
> Let's hope, that you are not now prevented from attaining a law
> degree or license, because of your behavior.

--- Jon Firor <exponent@telus.net>

> Hats off to John.I am Canadian but our laws are as archaic as
> yours. I'll keep my story short but in the end I got "justice". my
> son was born in 1992. His mother and me were not a good match. While
> I was paying her money under the table, she was collecting welfare
> the Govt decided that I should be taken to court for child
> support. There was an immediate order for interim support payments
> pending the final hearing. I have no problem paying my child support
> and believe that we all must meet our obligation. When I went to
> court the court would not grant my any deductions for credit card
> receipts, receipts for child clothing etc. Fine, no big deal I moved
> on. In 1995 I got a call from my sons daycare who refused to keep
> him as they believe he was drugged. They could not contact the
> mother and that was why I got the call. The daycare told me his half
> brother was on Ritalin and they believed the mother gave it to my
> son. On the day in question I picked up

> two kids who were zapped on Ritalin from daycare. I took my son to
> my doctor who tested him (after great hesitation) for Ritalin and he
> was positive despite having no prescription for it. I called the
> Ministry of Children and Families and launched a complaint. I also
> contacted my mother for advice who said I had no choice I must get
> custody. I hired a lawyer, the very Ministry to whom I complained
> paidf for her lawyer and now the accusations flew. I was accused of
> sexual abuse and immediately had all my visits cutoff. Reports from
> professionals were ordered on myself (hold it here she is the one
> that gave kid Ritalin). I had to pay for these expensive reports
> which in the judge's terms were inconclusive. I eventually got my
> visitation back. I did nothing wrong.  Fast forward to 2000. I was
> sick of the legal bills and by now the original facts were all
> buried under 100s of pages of legal mumbo jumbo. At this point I had
> spent 180,000 with some of it

> being lent to me by my mother. Even my mother was weary by this
> time. The other side approached us with an offer which was pay my
> son's mother 100 dollars a month and cover all dental and activities
> expenses (I was currently paying 500). My son needed major
> orthodontic care and at least with this deal I could ensure it got
> done. I bailed and took the deal wanting to get it over, I was bust
> by this point. Fast forward 2005. I get a letter from the Ministry
> saying that I have child support arrears of 20,000 plus change. It
> turns out that my sons mother had assigned her support rights to the
> Ministry and was not legally entitled to enter into an agreement
> with me. The judge tells me that legally the court order is
> invalid. The Ministry tells me that even though they were paying the
> mother's legal bills that it was up to her and her lawyer to inform
> me of this outside binding agreement. I go after the other lawyer
> and as you would expect get nowhere. A judge

> rules that although the mother misled me the child should not be
> harmed by being denied child support. In 2006 my son left his
> mothers and said he was not going back. He has lived with me since
> May 2006 and I have a custody order from a judge date Sept. 2006. I
> have applied to have my child support obligations terminated and to
> have the mother pay me. I still owe 8000 in arrears. I have found
> out that my sons mother has claimed tax credits, tax deductions and
> even collected welfare for a few months for him (while she was also
> working). I got this information under the Freedom Of Information
> Act by getting my son to sign the authorization. I now defend myself
> and after 3+ years I have no order (not even an interim one) to
> receive support. In Canada the Ministry will help the custodial
> parent with legal bills.i make too much they say so they wont help
> me but guess what they are funding the mother fully. I have written
> letters of complaint and have

> filed motion after motion which all get delayed for one reason or
> another. My son turns 18 in a few months and I have been in court
> for 16 years. What I have learned is that as a man you ARE
> discriminated against in the courts. I don't know how it is in the US
> but from what I have read it is similar. From all of this I have
> learned you are in this battle by yourself against every agency you
> can imagine, men are not equal, and last but not least if you can
> keep a level head and do the "right" thing you will persevere. I am
> truly happy to be sitting here watching Monday night football with
> my son.

... What a nightmare!  So many people just don't believe this type of
stuff goes on every day.  Knowing your child is being 'medicated' is
just frightening.  Glad to hear you are together and things are stable
for your son... 

                                                         John Murtari
Coordinator                                       AKidsRight.Org
jmurtari@AKidsRight.Org         A Kid's Right to BOTH parents"
(315) 944-0999(x-211)             http://www.AKidsRight.Org/


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