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Posts Tagged ‘court’

         Yesterday, Wesley Snipes was sentenced for 3 years for tax fraud; for not filing his tax returns for approximately three years.  Wow, they are really making an example of him.  I am sure…Joe Smoe will think twice about it if they are tempted not to file; or, not to pay when they owe taxes.   This conviction will have a huge IMPACT on those tempted not to pay.   No-one wants to, willingly, go through this kind of trauma, if they can avoid it…unless they got screws loose.

         On the radio this morning, i heard that Mr. Snipes allegedly paid the court 5 million dollars in back taxes….with something like 30 million, or so to go!  Wowee, how many zillions of dollars does a person have to make to OWE that kind of money in taxes and penalties?  I, for one, don’t want to ever be in that position.  Maybe it isn’t so bad being a middle class Joe Smoe!  🙂 

         I am sure that Mr. Snipes’ lawyers will appeal this sentence; but, more than likely, that will only delay the event.  There was plenty of star power personal references presented to the court, attesting to Mr. Snipes character…but, it didn’t seem to make a difference.  The government is going to hold up this conviction so that the public will pay close attention to the consequences.

        I feel badly for Mr. Snipe’s family.  The stress of paying that kind of money plus, worry over their loved one going to prison has to be overwhelming.  If Mr. Snipes was a victim of poor tax advice…that is bad enough.  However, if he choose to put himself in this position, rebelling against having to part with his money…then the sentence is deserved.   It was alleged, in court, that he not only willfully was rebelling, he was hiding money overseas and through friends and family.  Understand that the prosecution presented evidence that this was not just a whim or a mistake…they alledged that this went on for a decade.  In that case, three years of prison time, should allow for enough time to reflect on the error of his ways.

          None of us have the ability to read his mind and determine his actions; thankfully, that responsibility was up to the judge and jury.  If nothing else, this conviction just reinforces the old saying…there is nothing sure about life, except death and taxes!!!

         

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       It was announced today that the court in Texas that has authority over the 416 children that were removed under suspicion of abuse from their parents who are part of the polyamous sect of Latter Day Saints has deemed it necessary to move 27 of those children.

        The 27 chosen children are actually teenaged boys.  They are being moved over 7 hours away from the area to a ranch for troubled boys and girls.  What????  How does this even make sense.  They will be over 7 hours away from their families, from the court, from Child Protective Services that will have jurisdiction over them.  How in the world is does this make sense?  Services will have to be coordinated between counties hours away from each other…this is costly and adds extra complications for the kids involved.

        Why wouldn’t they keep them close; so that those who are in the foster care system can maintain contact with appropriate family members?  How will they have regular contact with the lawyers, investigators, social workers, educators, counselors, and so on?  This will put even more of a financial strain on the system.

          I have worked in the foster care system as a foster parent..i know what seperation from family can do to those kids; even when they are allowed visitation with family.   in this case, i wonder if they will even allow visitation…and if they do…how long will it before family relationships are deemed safe or unsafe for the kids?

        Even if the worst is found to be true and mothers and fathers have allowed/condoned/or abused these kids…there are other family members, i am sure, who would be willing to do a family placement to maintain some kind of healthy bonding for the kids.  The system has to be alert to inflicting more emotional damage to these kids while trying to protect them from other abuses they may have suffered; otherwise, they are guilty of damaging the children also.

       There must be Aunts, Uncles, Adult Sisters or Brothers, or Grandparents who want to protect these children and maintain contact so that the children are not further damaged.  It doesn’t compute.  I think we dont have all of the facts…but, because this investigation is so large and they cant investigate it all quickly…this is one way to seperate and divide until they understand the complexities of the cases…who is a family member to whom…and who abused who.

      At the same time, I wonder how much more damaged, some of these kids will be…when all is said and done.  At this point, no one knows who has been abused and who hasn’t but they are all being treated the same.  They need to be healthy, safe, shown appropriate love and affection and feel secure.  Those things are in short supply when you are thrust into a whole new world from what you are used to.

      Feelings of trust, bonding, and abandonment are all at risk in these kinds of situations.  Trauma is a given…the trick is to do the least amount of damage possible.  It is a horrible situation all of the way around.   The poor kids who are innocent in all of this…poor parents who Could be innocent in the area of abuse/neglect…those are the ones I feel sorry for.  They are all being traumatized.  The ones who are guilty…i don’t have too much sympathy for.

         The children are feeling scared,abandoned,lonely,sad,confused, traumatized, exposed, unsafe and uncertain of what comes next like all foster children.  Of course, those who were abused were also feeling those same emotions during the time they endured the alledged abuse.

         I would wish for a speedy resolution of the investigation; but, i know better…and that is why i say…there is more damage to come…just from the length of the time away from the things that the children know as safety and security!

           *This is an update to the blog post i did on the 12th of April.

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        Wow, who knew that it mattered, when you were born, which side of the blanket you were born on when it comes to getting your birthright inheritence or whether your rights will be denied?

         Is a child’s birthright not automatic when that birthparent gives the child up for adoption?  No, it can be denied in the state of New York, anyway. 

          Today, i read in the news that a woman born over 50 years ago to a direct descendent of the jello fortune was denied by the highest court in New York the right to a portion of that said fortune. 

           It seems that the estate of the woman’s birthmother denied that she was entitled to a third of the estate; because, she had been put up for adoption and, because the laws of the state said that a child put up for adoption wasn’t considered a child of the person for whom the trust was established.

        The mother of the “child” went on to get married later after putting up the infant for adoption and went on to have two additional children who were entitled to their portion of the estate because they were born during her marriage.

         Does that seem fair?  The child did not have a say about when she was conceived or to whom she was born; she was born to the woman and allegedly, to a man who was married to someone else.  Is it her fault about the circumstances of her birth?  No.  Was it her choice to be adopted?  No.  Still, i guess legally…the decision has been made.

         My question is…morally is it a correct decision?  I wonder how the birth, half- siblings feel?  I mean, obviously the estate felt that they had a right to fight paying a portion of the trust fund to this woman; but, personally, if it were me….i would feel that she was entitled to a sum of money. 

         The woman started searching for her birthparents when she was 19.  She spent lots of money and time searching.  She didn’t start her search thinking that she was going to discover she was born to a family with incredible riches that she could inherit.  I am sure that she began searching strictly for the purpose of finding out more about herself personally. 

           Whatever her personal reasons for searching; I hope she found some kind of answers to her questions when she met her mother.  She did get to meet her and find out about her birth circumstances.  Hopefully she was able to heal those parts of herself that were filled with questions when she discovered she had a NEED to know about her beginnings. 

           It seems that these questions about the trust fund came up after the birth mother died.  Who knows what the birth mother’s feelings were on the subject.  That wasn’t reported in anything i have heard about this trust fund issue with the courts.  Was the woman and her siblings able to develop any type of postitive relationship?  If so, why the issue of money went before the court is curious. 

            If the half siblings contested sharing the money…i then wonder, what makes them in their own minds feel more entitled?  It is kind of sad.  Who knows how much richer their lives could have been otherwise.  I mean, i wonder if they would find joy in knowing their sister had there not been money involved?   Maybe it isn’t just an issue of money; could it be some other reason that they feel she is not entitled to a share of the wealth?   I wonder is the sister the kind of person that would not be welcome in a family whether they had money or not?  Is she a good, friendly, moral person?

             Some how, it feels like an injustice.  I mean, the half siblings got to grow up with their mother.  The woman did not.  They were born to a comfortable lifestyle; did the woman live in comfort?  Should she be compensated for being rejected at her birth?  I don’t know.  But regardless, it just feels a little unfair to me. 

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