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#51378 - 03/09/03 03:17 PM Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
Muldoon Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 1428
Loc: St Paul MN
Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club.

As I have walked the halls of the MN State Capital (201 Club) these last 4 weeks lobbying for changes to the Statute of Limitations on CSA my little buddy has been at my side. Victor Justice my yellow teddy bear is helping me get through the ups and downs of the day. The site of a 53-year-old man walking with his teddy bear sure turns the heads of the passer byes. The teddy bears are the symbol of our lost innocence and our lost childhood. Victor is for all my brothers here at male survivors; all the victories that we have made to become survivors. Justice is for what I seek, Justice for victims of child sexual abuse.
I have talked with 80 members of the 201 Club about the need to pass our bill and have gotten very positive responses from most. Itís hard to believe that I can talk with 15 people a day about the evils of CSA and the personal affects it has had on me. I start out by telling about the need to change the age from 24 to 48 by which one has to sue. I give them the short story about being raped by Father Ryan but then talk about how I told on Father. I speck about the gang of audits that conspired to steal my civil rights. When I told on Father at the age of 11 all these grown ups started raping my mind. They told me they would help but all they wanted was to cover their ass. They talked me into not going to the police," all the boys and girl will know what Father did to you Tom let the church board deal with it."
What a fool I was, that fucking gang of audits raped me over and over again as they put me on trail and told me their didnít believe me. The anger just overwhelmed me. I make sure that all the member of the 201 Club knows what that did to me. Dealing with the trauma of being raped by Father Ryan was minor compared to what the gang of audits did to me. I then talk about how society has failed all victims of SA in so many ways for the last 50+ years.
You only get about 10-15 minutes with the reps so you have to keep it moving. I try to get them to join the conversation and let me know where they stand on the issue. This is where they scribe ends and you have to be ready to go in any direction they take you.

I have found the greatest support from the RC's (Roman Catholic) Reps. They are so pissed at the church and look at this bill as a way to force the church to do the right thing. I must say that when I find out they are RC I pull out my full story scribe. About Father Ryan telling me " God wants you to do this for me" and him crushing my testicles because I was getting away from his evil. The fact that my right side was so damaged it never grew to be a man. The fact that I couldnít father children and the side effects I have to live with today. I can see that they feel my pain.

At the end of all my meetings I give them a copy of MaleSurvivorsís home page and tell them they are lots of information to be had at our web site. Also I leave them with a 5x7 of the handout, Teach the children to never hide in the silence. "This is what it is all about for me, helping protect todayís kids Ď I tell them. Brian Z your photo really crabs them deep down and it forces them to think about the children.
This bill has an excellent chance of passing if we can keep it in the pure state. I can feel God's power at work all over at the capital; he is moving people to action. I know that the church will be sending there high paid Lobbyist out to do battle against our side. We can argue against them point for point and win overwhelmingly. Still lots of hard work to do but we are making process at changing the way the world deals with victims of childhood sexual abuse. Muldoon

_________________________
Teach the Children to Never Hide in the Silence

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#51379 - 03/09/03 03:53 PM Re: Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Muldoon,

Thanks so much for sharing your touching & inspiring experiences with us! Your advocacy for us male survivors everywhere is so energizing & empowering for us all. My prayers & hopes are with you & those you work with.

My friend, I too have a crushed testicle. Whenever
I used to ask family about it they would say I don't know probably born that way. But now I remember & I know better.

Now I remember the abuse I suffered, and I want to make sure "the powers that be" never forget any of us who have gone thru this, and remember so that others will not have to.

Thanks again brother.

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#51380 - 03/09/03 04:51 PM Re: Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
Mark Crawford Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/30/02
Posts: 73
Loc: New Jersey
Muldoon I applaud your activism. We need a few more people like you, in fact I sure wish I could find one or two here in my state, New Jersey.

I also have been a victim of clergy abuse...I still practice my faith and KNOW most priests are good. That said....the Church leadership has used our state laws which gives them absolute immunity to coerce victims who have come forward into accepting small settlements along with a confidentiality agreement..as opposed to losing their case in court by virture of our states current law. Case after case has been dismissed here in NJ...these institutions are off the hook.

I have been actively seeking to change some current laws here in New Jersey. I believe the statute of limitations should be eliminated in its entirety when involving cases of the sexual molestation of a minor. Also, we have a law here which is called the "Charitable Immunity Act" It gives complete immunity to all non-profit institutions here in this state when a member of that institutions seeks to bring a lawsuit. So...a child who was sexually molested by say a teacher in a private school or a member of the clergy...has no legal recourse against the institution if you were a member. A non-member could bring action. How screwed up is that?

Since 1999 I asked my local state senator Joseph Vitale to introduce an ammendment to our current state law which would remove their immunity in cases of sexual abuse against a minor. The Senator agreed and introduced the bill. The bill was assigned to the judiciary committee where only that chairman can move the bill out of committee. The State Senator (William Gormley) refuses to even listen to the victims. He flatley refuses to post this bill for a hearing and wants everyone to believe there is no support for this change. Since 1999 he ignored at least 10 requests to move this bill forward. It was allowed to expire and had to be reintroduced this year. The truth is he is preventing supporters from a public hearing by not posting this bill for a hearing. Without a hearing the bill cannot move on. He has never responded in writing to any of my many requests to post this bill. Please see the article below. This was recently printed in the NY Times and in fact this same Senator is qouted in the article.

If anyone reading this post cares to call or write this Senator (as a survivor of childhood abuse)and help him understand, please be my guest. If you are from New Jersey then please let him know and if your not...so what, he still needs to hear from victims! If anyone is interested in helping Muldoon or myself in our respective states than by all means please join us. Muldoon, if there is anything I can do please let me know...I would be glad to contact your state law makers and I do have a few friends in MN. I am also glad to hear you are making progress....most states have moved quickly to change and mend laws...not so here in NJ. The Catholic Conference has lobbied these Senators agressively not to change this law or they would face MANY lawsuits. Anyway here is the article to which I was refering.

January 9, 2003, Thursday, Late Edition - Final

SECTION: Section B; Page 5; Column 5; Metropolitan Desk

LENGTH: 704 words

HEADLINE: Judge Throws Out Lawsuits Against Boychoir School

BYLINE: By DIANA JEAN SCHEMO

BODY:
A New Jersey judge has dismissed two lawsuits against the American Boychoir
School, where dozens of former students say they were molested as children
by the choir director and other employees. The judge ruled that as a
nonprofit institution, the school could not be sued for acts that injured
children, "no matter how flagrant that conduct may be."

In a decision issued on Monday, Judge Jack Sabatino of New Jersey Superior
Court ruled that New Jersey's Charitable Immunity Act prevented victims from
suing the Princeton-based boarding school, although they could sue
individual employees who abused them or did not try to stop abuse.

Noting that lawmakers and the courts had interpreted the law as granting
nonprofit groups broad protections, Judge Sabatino wrote, "This court is
constrained to hold that the act insulates charitable organizations from
liability for any degree of tortious conduct, no matter how flagrant that
conduct may be." He ruled that "contentions that employees and agents of the
American Boychoir School acted willfully, wantonly, recklessly,
indifferently -- even criminally -- do not eviscerate the school's legal
protection."

The decision affects two suits against the Boychoir School by men who
accused Donald Hanson, who ran the school's choir from 1970 to 1982, of
molesting them as children.

In one suit, John W. Hardwicke Jr., 45, a White Hall, Md., resident who
attended the Boychoir School from 1969 to 1971, said he was molested by Mr.
Hanson and three other employees, from a headmaster to a cook. In the other
suit, Douglas Palmatier, who started at the Boychoir School at the age of 9
in 1971, said he was raped by Mr. Hanson over the next eight years.

Beyond those two suits, however, Keith Smith, the lawyer for Mr. Hardwicke,
said more than a dozen former students had contacted him in recent months
and were watching the Hardwicke case to decide whether they would sue as
well. In addition, another dozen alumni who spoke to The New York Times last
year said Mr. Hanson and other employees at the Boychoir School molested
them in the 1970's and 1980's.

Mr. Hardwicke said he was "absolutely stunned" by the judge's decision and
planned to appeal. "I was really taught, and truly believed, that the courts
were interested in justice, that the legal system was interested in
protecting the rights of victims," Mr. Hardwicke said.

His wife, Terri, who was also a plaintiff in the suit, said: "It's
unbelievable that there were ever laws passed that would so abandon the
victim. I just don't know how these people sleep rendering these decisions.
It just leaves us so devastated."

Jay Greenblatt, the lawyer for the Boychoir School, said that while the
decision protected the school, Mr. Hardwicke could still press his suit
against Mr. Hanson and other school employees. "I think it's terrible that
Hanson or anyone else who might have inappropriately molested this boy get
away with anything," Mr. Greenblatt said.

Mr. Hanson, who left the school in 1982 after admitting molesting students,
was served with the Hardwicke suit at his mother's house in Canada. He has
not responded to it, and further efforts to locate him have been
unsuccessful, Mr. Smith said.

Since April, a bill to end charities' immunity from prosecution for sexual
abuse by employees has remained in the New Jersey Senate Judiciary
Committee. Michelle Jaker, a spokeswoman for State Senator Joseph Vitale,
the sponsor of the Senate bill, said the Catholic Conference has lobbied
heavily against efforts to weaken the law.

In a telephone interview, Senator William L. Gormley, the Judiciary
Committee co-chairman, said flatly, "The bill isn't going to be moving." Mr.
Gormley said he opposed the bill because it would open the gates to lawsuits
for acts that were decades old. "I don't see the support for, in effect,
retroactively affecting the status quo in New Jersey," Mr. Gormley said.

A dispirited Ms. Hardwicke said that New Jersey institutions like the
Boychoir School "ought to come with warnings: 'We can starve them, beat
them, torture them, leave them naked out in the rain, and you can't do
anything about it. You'll have no legal recourse.' "

http://www.nytimes.com

If anyone cares to contact him...here is his info below. He represents voters in south Jersey....Atlantic City area. Tell him to POST BILL S-843 for a hearing and stop allowing these institutions to further abuse these victims who have already suffered too much. This bill would remove thier immunity ONLY in cases of the sexual molestation of a minor.

Mark

Senator William Gormley
108 Hamilton Mall
4403 Blackhorse Pike
Mays Landing, New Jersey 08330
609-646-3500


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#51381 - 03/09/03 11:02 PM Re: Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
orodo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/15/02
Posts: 735
Loc: Imladris, The Safe Haven of Ar...
Muldoon:

I know how you feel. Two weeks ago I met with my state legislator, who is presenting a bill for consideration, modeled after the California law suspending the statute of limitations in cases of SA of minors. It's moving forward here, but my Rep will change the text of the bill, limiting "runaway jury awards." He does not think it will get far without such caps on awards. So we'll see... The Church is protected here by a decision

http://www.courts.state.me.us/opinions/documents/02me108na.html

which says a Church and minister/priest relationship is essentially a matter of separation of Church and State, so they will never get sued, or change for that matter, until this decision is overturned, or the First Amendment is not aplicable...we'll see about that too..

I have been following the proposed changes in MN, Muldoon, and when I get news links, I have been sending them to my state rep, as he wants to know how these matters progress nationally.

Sparky:

I have been watching the NJ news too, and sending stuff to my rep. BTW, one of the teachers who was at that school, resigned from the school where my kids attend last april. So I know exactly what you're talking about ....

http://www.malesurvivor.org/cgi-local/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=16;t=000078

Peace, LYLAB

Orodo

_________________________
It is better to be Dragon Master than Dragon Slayer. Some Dragons are meant to be mastered, others meant to be slain. Odin, Great Spirit, God, grant me the wisdom to know the difference. "May the Valar guide and bless you on your path under the sky"

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#51382 - 03/14/03 06:49 AM Re: Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
Muldoon Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/30/02
Posts: 1428
Loc: St Paul MN
Just back from 3 more days at the capital and another 32 meetings. My first 3 meeting where all NEGATIVE but over all a very POSITIVE time. Found out that the church has 4 high paid lawyers working againest us victims and our teddy bears. One of the leaders in the House had all 4 in his office last week working him over. Matt told them no way was he going to change his mind he was 100 % in favor of our bill. It is such a great feeling to know that these people understand what CSA is about. So many tell me about their own abuse or the fact that they have personal friends that have been abused. One of the oldest member of the 201 Club told me
" Hell I am a war vet I know what PTSD is all about"
So you see guys people do understand and care.

Victor Sorry to hear that you also have a crushed testicle. It sure was a way for him to silence me, think he was tring to make me pass out from the pain. It could of happened to you when you where real young.

Mark That law in NJ sounds like it is real fucked up. They can do anything and never be sued,seems hard to beleive. Mark you should try lobbing all the other members of the committeee, they can force the chair to hear the bill if most of them are in favor of it. I find that the 10 minute personal meeting can realy move them. You may have to camp out at the Capital for a few days but it can bring big rewards. Call ahead and make as many meeting apointment as possible but sometimes you have to talk with them in the hallways, It may take two years to pass the bill but the most important thing this year is to get a hearing. So this year just work on the other members of the committee and your own Senator. Also find out what Law Firm is lobbying for the church, then get a copy of senators Gormley's campain financal report, most likly he is getting big $$$$$ from the layer at that law firm.
One of the Reps in MN told me that last year they couldn't get any victims to talk so it was hard to move the bill. This year we have a small group of victims working for change. It is so hard for a victim to talk about this shit but it is the only way you will move them. I guess that it is god's work that I am unemployed right now so I have time to spend in St Paul at the capital.

Orodo Our bill is also modeled after the California law suspending the statute of limitations in cases of SA of minors. It is so good that you have some one working on it in your state. Orodo you should have your rep check out the work that is being done at the Center for Restorative Justice and Peacemaking at the U of MN. They have models of programs that help bring justice to all victims and cuts the lawyers out of most of the action.

We have our 1st hearing in the Senate on 3/25 at 7pm . In the eve we can get 2 hours just for our bill and we should be able to have full TV coverage on the GOV. channel. Peter D who is my T and also a member of the broard at Male Servivors is going to testify. It will be good to have Peter there to anserwer all the ??? from the Professioal side. Orodo tell your rep that our bill will most likly pass this year.

ALL Servivors here that have friends in MN call or email them and ask for help. We need people from all over the state to contact their Reps in favor of HF386 & SF575 law suspending the statute of limitations in cases of SA of minors. Thanks for all the help Muldoon

_________________________
Teach the Children to Never Hide in the Silence

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#51383 - 03/14/03 06:46 PM Re: Walking with Victor Justice at the 201 Club
orodo Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/15/02
Posts: 735
Loc: Imladris, The Safe Haven of Ar...
YOU ROCK MULDOON MY BRO..

My state rep presents the action to have the LD admitted after submission deadline next wednesday.

I'll keep you posted. Keep up your hard work, I feel like I'm walkin those halls with you bro...

Orodo

_________________________
It is better to be Dragon Master than Dragon Slayer. Some Dragons are meant to be mastered, others meant to be slain. Odin, Great Spirit, God, grant me the wisdom to know the difference. "May the Valar guide and bless you on your path under the sky"

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