Free-Range Kids

Child Services Still Hounding Couple Who Let Their Kids Play Outside

The latest from a family threatened by CPS.

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Kid with ram
Francisco Goya

You may recall the story last month of a family threatened by the authorities for letting their kids walk outside. Here's the latest from the mom, Danielle Meitiv, who is hoping the rest of the media takes note. I hope so, too.

Meitiv explains via email:

Dear Reason: On Monday, a Montgomery County child protective services worker went to my children's school and interviewed them without my knowledge or consent. Why?

Because last month we'd let them walk home from the park by themselves. It's a mile away. They are 6 and 10. We live in suburban Maryland. Let me recap the story and then tell you where we're at.

On a Saturday afternoon in December, my husband, Alexander, gave our kids permission to walk home from the local playground. I was out of town at the time. When they'd walked about halfway, a Montgomery County Police patrol car pulled up. A "helpful" neighbor had called 911 to report unaccompanied children walking outside. Our kids were brought home in a police cruiser.

At the door the police officer asked to see my husband's ID, but did not explain why. When he refused, she called for backup.  

A total of six patrol cars showed up.

Alexander then agreed to get his ID and went to go upstairs. The officer said—in front of the kids—that if he came down with anything else, "shots would be fired." She proceeded to follow him upstairs, and when he said she had no right to do so without a warrant, she insisted that she did.

Our 10 yr. old called me crying and saying that the police were there and that Daddy was going to be arrested. Alexander stepped outside to continue the conversation away from the kids. When he disagreed with one of the officers about the dangers that walking alone posed to children, she asked him: "Don't you realize how dangerous the world is? Don't you watch TV?"  They took notes and left.

Two hours later a CPS worker arrived with a "temporary safety plan," which she told my husband to sign. It stated that he would not leave the children unsupervised at any time before Monday morning, when someone from their office could contact him. He refused to sign it. She informed him that if he didn't, she would instruct the police to take the children away immediately. He signed.

free-range-kids

We were then contacted by a CPS social worker named W. Don Thorne who made an appointment for us to come to his office on Friday,  Jan. 9. A little while later he called back saying that he needed to come to us, so that he could see our house. We told him we would meet with him at his office, not our home. He said he would speak with his supervisor and call us back.

On Monday, Mr. Thorne showed up at our door unannounced, accompanied by a police officer. He insisted that he had the right to come into our house without a warrant. I said that I was invoking my Fourth Amendment rights against unwarranted search, and would not let him in, but repeated my willingness to go to his office to answer questions. Then I noticed that he had a visitor's sticker from my children's elementary school on his jacket. Had he been to my children's school to interview them?!

He didn't answer that question and they quickly left. I have since learned that he visited my children's school and spoke to my children without my knowledge or consent.

We do not know what actions CPS will take next.

We are frightened and confused. We are good parents, educated professionals, and our children are happy, healthy, well-adjusted, and academically successful.

As difficult as it is for us to believe, all of these events occurred as the result of allowing our children to walk along public streets in the middle of the afternoon without our supervision.

My husband grew up in the former Soviet Union. Now he wonders if we have to just go along with whatever the authorities want us to do. I keep reminding him that we have RIGHTS in this country and that neither the police nor the bureaucrats can arbitrarily dismiss them.

Read more from Reason on the Meitiv family's problems with CPS here.

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  1. I would send the kids off to the grandparents for a visit, hire a lawyer, and go visit CPS to demand that they either make their case in court, or back the fuck off.

    1. Sounds like a great way to get arrested.

      1. Sounds like that will be happening sooner or later in this process.

      2. That’s why you have the lawyer go visit CPS and make the demand.

        1. It would also be fun to demand they allow you to inspect their office without a warrant, of course.

        2. If you get the lawyer first, he will tell you HOW STUPID it would be to send them away to relatives.

      3. Its amazing how reluctant cops are to arrest you when the person standing next to you says “Hang on, I’m their lawyer.”

      4. Why is it a great way to get arrested for you to demand that those sworn to obey the law actually do so?

        They expect you and I to obey the law simply because it is the law — but we are not paid tens of thousands of dollars a year to obey the law, nor do we swear any kind of oath to do so.

        But they are sworn and paid to do so.

        1. Why not show them your ID?

    2. ^This.

      Preferably with the grandparents who live in a different jurisdiction, preferably a different state.

      Lenore, please keep us informed about this, expecially if someone sets up a defense fund for them.

    3. They can find the grandparents, and probably will, but I like this strategy.

      They might need to send the kids abroad to get them away from these fucking mini-Jacobians.

      1. Right, but CPS from County A has no jurisdiction (AFAIK, IANAL) in County B within the same state. Certainly not in another state.

        1. It’s CPS. I don’t think that’ll stop them.

          1. Rules apply to those ruled, not their rulers.

      2. You give bad advice. If they did NOTHING wrong then NOTHING should happen to them. You follow your advice and they will assume you are doing something wrong. If you talk to a lawyer first they will tell you exactly what I am saying.

    4. This sounds like someone who has never had to deal with CPS…

      1. To seize the kids from the grandparents, they would have to show that the grandparents were neglecting/abusing the kids.

        1. Nope, just that the kids are in danger. The grandparents could return the kids to the parents at any time, hence they are in danger.

          1. It varies by state. In AZ, CPS can only seize “a child from the parents if a child is suffering or will imminently suffer abuse or neglect, or for a medical or psychological examination to determine if the child has been abused or neglected.”

            That second one is pretty horrifying, as it may not require any showing at all that the child as at risk.

            But, if the kid is at the grandparents, then they would have to show that the kid is actually being abused/neglected at the time, or will “imminently” be abused and neglected. That “imminently” is going to be tough if the only beef CPS has is with the parents themselves.

            Of course, most of this would be sorted out after CPS had already seized and traumatized the children. You may recall that case in Texas where CPS cleaned out dozens of kids from the Mormon nutters, had them for months, and was parceling them out to foster homes before the Texas Supreme Court woke up and ordered CPS to return the kids.

            And the problems multiply exponentially if the kid is in another state.

            1. If the CPS worker’s life suddenly became complicated by a collapsed lung or a broken pelvis, this might go on the back burner and fizzle away.

              Just a thought.

              1. Time to start removing lug nuts from cars.

            2. First off, those people in Texas are NOT Mormons. They are offshoots that call themselves “Fundamentalist Mormons,” but practice a perverse religion completely unlike that of the faith whose name they use. Mormons are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints – there no connection between the this faith and the “nutter” group in Texas.

          2. The kids could be struck by lightning, be hit by a meteorite or their school could be visited by a terrorist.

            They’re not 100% safe ANYWHERE, including in CPS custody.

            But 100% safety is the standard that CPS applies to parents, once those parents come to the attention of CPS in any way. If the kids are not 100% safe with the parents, CPS takes them.

            1. This isn’t true. The real issue is that if you get a single nut job in CPS (and let’s face it, there are several), they can apply a 100% standard with little or no consequence. If, however, you are a rational person, you can lose everything if you don’t behave with hyper-vigilance. I worked in torts and liabilities with CPS for a while and one of my friends made a bad call on a foster parent, and the kid in custody was hurt. My friend was featured in the local paper as the worst person in the world for a while. She lost her job. She lost her reputation. She was literally spit on by someone at the grocery store once. Then, she took her MIT graduate degree and went to work in silicon valley for twice the pay and half the responsibility. This to say, all the negative consequences fall on those who aren’t hyper vigilant.

        2. To take them from the parents they would have to show the same thing. So why act guilty by sending them away?

    5. You send your children away and CPS will assume you have something to hide. This is VERY BAD ADVICE.

  2. I keep reminding him that we have RIGHTS in this country and that neither the police nor the bureaucrats can arbitrarily dismiss them.

    How quaint.

    1. I am laughing bitterly at her naivete.

    2. Maybe we used to have such rights, but those are bygone days.

    3. That’s exactly what I thought.

  3. Scary indeed, as once the “authorities” get you in their sites, you’re screwed; with very few exceptions. Unless you can enlist an equal or greater govt power figure you’re f’ed.

    They will use all their varied and expansive powers to make your life miserable if you dare to challenge their actions and make them “lose face.”

    1. “if you dare to challenge their actions”

      Bend over, or else.

      That’s always been the mantra of power.

    2. ONLY if you did something wrong. If you are innocent, then you will have NOTHING to worry about. CPS does NOT take children away. A judge has to order it. Now if you are guilty…..

  4. They need a lawyer yesterday. Also new neighbors.

    1. Couldn’t agree more. At this point every interaction they have with CPS should be planned in advance and with their lawyer in attendance.

      My suspicion is that they will back off once they realize there’s someone who actually knows the fucking law in the room.

      1. And recorded.

      2. don’t tell them what they do and don’t know about the law- the law doesn’t matter. think of the children?!

      3. Yes, and the lawyer will tell them to cooperate fully with their request. Because they have NOTHING to worry about if they did NOTHING WRONG.

    2. The “neighbor” who called the police was 6-8 blocks away from their house.

      1. It would be a shame if something happened to the ‘neighbor’, or their home.

  5. CPS would go apeshit in my neighborhood – kids playing outside! No adults visible! Walking to school by themselves! Apocalypse is always just around the corner.

  6. They dared to defy a petty tyrant, and now it’s only a matter of time until their children are taken from them. At this point the only way to escape that fate is to move to a different jurisdiction.

    1. If they do that they’ll be on a 60 Minutes special by next month.

    2. This.

      You only frustrate yourself and destroy your life by living as if you have rights that will be respected.

      Often I’m frustrated by the Medical Mafia and their control of my access to health care. Then I’m frustrated by Obamacare insurance that I pay for and don’t need.

      Pointless.

      They have the guns, and they make the rules. All I can do is live within them the best I can.

      1. “When in the course of human events…”

        1. You don’t understand man, our government has made rebellion – of the kind our Founders advocated – illegal. We’re stuck with what we have.

          1. It was illegal when the founders did it. It’ll be illegal when the next founders do it. And the next. And the next

          2. If the American Revolution failed, you think George Washington, John Addams, Thomas Jefferson and all the rest wouldn’t have been tried, convicted and executed for their crimes?

            Rebellion is ALWAYS illegal. But sometimes it’s necessary.

            In fact, it’s less illegal now than it was in 1775. Providing that rebels make the proper announcements of intent, wear a recognizable symbol at all times when engaging in violent acts and obey the laws of war, the Geneva Conventions make it VERY clear that they are lawful combatants, and if they are captured it’s a war crime to try them as criminals for acting like soldiers.

          3. Rebellion is always illegal. That’s why it’s called “rebellion.”

    3. BAD ADVICE, obviously. But that is what keeps CPS so busy.

  7. I’ll file this away to use next time some Normal is aghast when I tell them that CPS is the lowest of the low.

    1. Good luck. I thought the flash-bombing of a baby would wake up a few Normals. Nope, just the same old “there must be more to the story” or “if you sell drugs…”.

      Fuck everyone, everywhere.

      1. CPS did NOT flash bomb any children, you idiot.

    2. “That’s just a rare exception.”

      Look, without CPS, the poor would BBQ their own children. Is that the kind of world you want? A world where we let poor people think they’re equal to us?

      1. Mmmm. Pulled child sammitches.

        1. I pulled a child once. But now I’m on some sort of list.

          1. Yeah, odds are that kid has a revenge list with your name on it. =P

  8. Call a lawyer.

    1. And let the lawyer call a politician.

      1. just make sure, when hiring a lawyer, he or she is up to date on their campaign contributions.

    2. No shit, I think that might have made the difference at one or more points in this saga…or maybe I’ve been watching too much Scandal.

  9. This seems so strange. I live in Minneapolis and kids of all ages run all over the place. Just like when I was a kid. They know to stay out of my back yard, but other than that, there are no restrictions that I know of.

    1. They know to stay out of my back yard…

      I’m surprised those LARP Minesweeper games aren’t classified as an attractive nuisance.

    2. The really bad stuff seems to be very localized. Some places just have out of control assholes as CPS.
      I’m not in a city, but I see the same thing. No one gets hassled for letting their kids walk places.

      The worst places for this sort of thing seem to be in suburbs. My theory is that a lot of the reason for that is that in places like that, there is no tradition of semi-independent kids, while in cities and rural areas, that’s just how it has always been so no one questions it.

      1. I grew up in the suburbs and me and my friends rode our bikes or walked everywhere, sometimes many miles away from our neighborhood. We played in the woods. We played on the local high school football field. We rode to the comic book store and the grocery store (to pick up milk or something else for Mom who didn’t want to waste the gas)and all over. The problem today is kids are being so over-protected that they can barely function without an ‘adult’ hovering nearby.

        1. Yeah I had a lot of autonomy when I was a child. I had curfews and such that were sacrosanct, but within that I was allowed to go where I please as long as mom was informed.

    3. You’d be surprised. In my neighborhood, I see kids running around all the time. Kids walk home from school (although they walk past a long line of parents in cars blocking the entrance to our neighborhood while waiting to drive their kids home three blocks). That didn’t stop the cops from bringing my kids home and telling me off for my terrible parenting. At first, I was concerned. Were they misbehaving? Stepping out in front of cars? No. He was “barefoot” (in the summer, in Texas). She “put her foot in the street” (on a quiet side street, in a quiet suburb, with no cars coming). The last time, she was just “too young” to be walking home from the school park alone. And every time I asked why exactly that was a problem, the answer was, “Do I need to call CPS?”

      The last time, they did call CPS. The social worker was very diplomatic. She concluded that I hadn’t done anything wrong, but that I can’t do it anyway, because my neighbors might call the cops again, and then they’d “have” to “do something.”

      1. She admitted she’d have to do ‘something’ even though it’s not illegal?

        That right there was at least a federal crime (violation of rights under color of law, 18 USC 242), and possibly a state crime — many states have laws making official misconduct (if not violation of constitutional rights) a crime.

        Probably not enough for a citizen’s arrest (even in Texas), but if the CPS agent makes such a statement again and has backup that agrees with her (police officer, another CPS agent, etc) that IS a felony (18 USC 241) and you could make a citizen’s arrest on the spot.

    4. It happened once, it must be an epidemic. Look who wrote the article. That whiny shrew has an agenda and her head up her ass. I wish her parents had let her play on a cliff when she was a child, so annoying is she.

    5. We are discussing the Glorious People’s Republic of Montgomery County. Believe me, this kind of behavior isn’t strange.

  10. I’ve thought through a thousand times what I would do in similar circumstances and it never ends well in my simulation. I’m scared for them. It saddens me immensely that this is what Liberals consider Freedom.

    1. I don’t think that the people responsible for things like this are terribly liberal or concerned for freedom.

      This seems like the sort of government intrusion that both sides can get together on. “Won’t someone think of the children” isn’t something you only hear from the left. And while the laws that enable it are the ultimate problem, specially awful cases like this are immediately caused by the kind of petty tyranny that you find in local officials of all stripes.

      1. This. Whatever dipshittery animates Mr Thorne, it’s unlikely to be plain old left/right. My wild guess: Mr Thorne is no fan of the children of Abraham, and Mrs. Mietiv looks Jewish (as seen by people who try to make such identifications)

        More serious guess: Mr Thorne is on a demented mission to ensure he is never again associated with having done nothing before some kind of awful domestic violence occurs. He is also sadly not very bright, resulting in this situation.

      2. “I don’t think that the people responsible for things like this are terribly liberal or concerned for freedom”

        I don’t think any modern liberals are concerned for freedom either.

        1. It’s true, ‘liberals’ are not concerned for freedom if your working definition of ‘liberal’ is “a person who hates freedom and whose beliefs and political leanings are actively harmful to the country.” It’s amazing how many people suddenly become liberal when you find out you don’t agree with them, isn’t it?

          It’s always sad when people see a case of the harmful oversimplification of a complex subject, and respond to it with the harmful oversimplification of scapegoating. No one will ever be able to improve these governmental idiocies if every person who sees a problem says “Hmm, I wonder what caused that problem? It must be all of the people with a political ideology I believe does not align with my own.”

          If your worldview is that simple, chances are it’s also entirely unproductive.

  11. My advise.

    Agree to whatever the fuck they demand, sign anything they want you to sign (except for relinquishing your parental rights of course) and the instant you get a chance to move as far away from that state as you can because you have defied the kings men and they are fixing to make an example of you lest the other serfs get any ideas

    1. This too.

      This isn’t about rights.

      This is about people with guns determined to fuck you good and hard.

      1. We will protect the shit out of you!

  12. I will donate to a legal Defense fund but ONLY if the parents agree to sue the living daylights out of everything the moves. I will donate to the Legal Offense fund once it is established.

    1. I want those kids to have full ride tuition for any school they want plus a vacation and a car of their 16th birthday.

      All paid for by the taxpayers…cause while it does not seem to deter these criminals from violating their citizens rights it at least makes reparations.

    2. IIRC correctly the state has to consent to be sued. Not sure if that applies to municipalities.

      1. The theory is that the state must consent to being sued is because supposedly our elected representatives have sovereignty over the people they represent, something I’ve never understood the logic of.

        But the state tends to allow lawsuits when you can demonstrate the state’s action is likely to have violated the rules the state must follow (constitution, statutes, etc).

    3. And while I would certainly like to see CPS sued, the first priority for these people is to maintain custody of their kids. And I would support them in that.

      Realistically, you’re not going to get anyone fired over this. Thorne will probably go down as a hero among government employees and soccer moms.

  13. Apparently our good Mr Thorne is the very carachicture of a CPS worker…

    http://caselaw.findlaw.com/md-…..53909.html

    According to Menefee, he became aware at some point of the violent nature of Sheila’s boyfriend, Ruben Diaz. Menefee apparently reported to CPS and/or DHHS on several occasions that he suspected Diaz to be the source of the physical and mental abuse suffered not only by John Damien, but Sheila as well, even telling CPS that Sheila told him that Diaz had cut her arm with a knife. Menefee reports that none of these claims were investigated or reported to other relevant authorities by CPS or DHHS.
    On 6 September 2004, following an altercation which resulted in the grant of a temporary restraining order in favor of Sheila against Diaz, Diaz broke into Sheila’s home and stabbed her to death. When the police arrived, they found John Damien-then two years of age-in the room with Diaz and his now-deceased mother. On 23 October 2007, the boy was diagnosed with PTSD,7 at the age of five.

    Utterly ignores actual reports of abuse so a 2 year old kid can watch his mother get murdered so he can focus on the easy cases

    1. Utterly ignores actual reports of abuse so a 2 year old kid can watch his mother get murdered so he can focus on the easy cases

      The very epitome of a petty bureaucrat.

    2. Utterly ignores actual reports of abuse so a 2 year old kid can watch his mother get murdered so he can focus on the easy cases

      Well, for crying out loud, what do you expect, Rasilio? A case worker could get hurt interfering with a guy like Menefee. Don’t you care if CPS case workers get to go home safe at night?

    3. http://www.myfoxhouston.com/st…..t-of-spite

      Houston CPS ignores kids in danger with mom, waits until they are safe with grandma to start harassing them, then takes the kids away from safe environment because grandma dared to complain.

  14. When I was 6, I walked to school by myself, through town. It was probably in the neighborhood of a mile away.

    This is in my hood, so I’m curious which neighborhood of nosy Kravitzes this took place in. My money is on Takoma Park.

    1. The Google tells me that my hunch was correct, maybe only off by the official township border.

      A part of me is looking at this as comeuppance, in spite of my outrage over the absurdity of this situation. Maybe, just maybe, once statists start to get eaten by the monster they’ve created, things will actually start to change for the better. Not holding my breath.

      I don’t know much about the mom other than her online presence, but judging from that, my guess is that she fits the mold of your average Monkey County middle-classer. Enlightened, progressive and full of ideas of how other people are supposed to live their lives, or else.

      1. Maybe, just maybe, once statists start to get eaten by the monster they’ve created, things will actually start to change for the better.

        More likely they will just blame it on the other color of statist.

      2. You’re shitting me, I used to live in Takoma Park, before I got wise and moved to Arlington.

        1. Tacoma Park is the most progressively liberal town in Montgomery County, which is the second (after Howard) most progressively liberal county in Maryland, which is probably the most progressively liberal state in the US. None of this surprises me in the least.

          1. Yeah, this is pretty typical of the area. I’m in Anne Arundel, and it’s heading in that direction rapidly. It’s so bad even my wife (voted for Obama twice because it was “important” to elect a black president) is actively looking for other states in which to live.

          2. I turns out that the address info I saw is wrong. They live in Silver Spring, up the road from Takoma Park.

            The story is starting to get traction in DC and I’ve heard more about the parents. Not sure where they fall on the proggie scale, but they seem the decent sort and at least are fighting back against Leviathan.

            I hope they lawyer the fuck up and sue these bastards back to the Cretaceous Age.

      3. I just want the statists deported or deposited face down in landfills. I really don’t care if they leave town on the back of the horse or slung over it.

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  16. Every time I hear of things like this, I wonder how statists can live with themselves, yet I already know the answer, even as I still always wonder how they can live with themselves.

    This idea that the state knows best is bad enough even if we were all the same and wanted the same things. But to pretend that force, jail, and deatha wait those who make the state lose face, for nothing more than wanting to follow the Constitution and see the warrant, to pretend that this is not the ultimate result of every encoounter with the state, that the state can do no wrong and therefore its minions can do no wrong, and therefore its minions must have their God-given natural right of being all-powerful …

    I just do not understand statists, and how they can live with themselves, or look at themselves in the mirror each morning.

    1. I wonder how statists can live with themselves

      No cost is too high for a stable society, as long as that cost is paid by other people.

    2. Honestly? They claim “moral high ground,” and in that mindset, they honestly and truly believe that the argument stops there. They have the “moral high ground,” and consequently, are not required to debate the issue any further. They’re right and you’re wrong. To them, that is the objective clear cut truth. Questioning that means you’re a crazy person and it’s only a matter of time before the state’s minions starting knocking on your door.

      1. Questioning that means you’re a crazy person and it’s only a matter of time before the state’s minions starting knocking on your door.

        It’s more than that. Questioning them makes you dangerous. It is then the duty of a statist to force you to conform, or remove you from society. They will cheerfully kill you in good conscience, simply for disagreeing with them.

        1. talk about Orwellian but unfortunately correct

      2. ^This, sadly.

        1. They can sniff resistance and non-compliance like sharks smell blood. Quoting Constitutional rights is a bog tip-off of somebody in need of re-education.

      3. Also, don’t forget that many people believe that CPS are indeed looking out for the children, and that the parents are being negligent.

      4. Yes, I understand all that, it’s pounded into me every day, in a zillion stories of warped statists (but I repeat myself). These people are not human, they are mentally warped, literally out of control in every engineering sense.

        But I still do not understand them.

        1. Remember how when you were little you believed (presumably) in Santa Claus and how as long as you were a good kid you’d get Xmas loot? It’s exactly the same mindset – a simplistic moral narrative with all-knowing, consistently good people in charge.

      5. I know it’s been said many times but bears repeating

        Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.

        C.S. Lewis

    3. “I wonder how statists can live with themselves”

      There’s no mystery.

      Their loins swell with lust as they exercise their arbitrary power over to dominate, humiliate, and destroy their victims.

    4. Someone forgot their meds today?

  17. Some days, and this is one of them, it’s hard not to think these petty tyrants are trying their level best to provoke violence.

    1. So, for them it’s a win-win. They know that 99% of the time the parents will comply, and that the other 1% they get to be heroes and demonize the parents. Remember, the state always wins.

      1. it only takes one actual sample of a bad parent to justify their existence and their overbearance to insure it never happens again. This is the way most laws are made these days.

  18. my husband, Alexander, gave our kids permission to walk home from the local playground. I was out of town at the time

    I’m detecting…HUSBAND BLAMING!!1!

    1. Having been married for the last 19 years, I can attest that this is definitely all her husbands fault.

  19. my neighbor’s ex-wife makes $77 hourly on the internet . She has been out of a job for nine months but last month her check was $18454 just working on the internet for a few hours. read………….
    ????? http://www.cashbuzz80.com

  20. I used to wonder how East Germany managed to find enough people willing to staff their security apparatus or how they got 2.5% of people between the ages of 18 and 60 to become voluntary informants. I don’t wonder anymore.

    1. “See something, say something.”

      1. God, I want to vomit and/or scream every time I hear that.

        1. Oddly enough, it’s possible to do both (even beneficial — screaming while vomiting keeps the airway clear).

  21. Previously I said we need a new name for Lenore’s articles because they weren’t really nut punches. Well, this is definitely a nut punch to me.

  22. The officer said?in front of the kids?that if he came down with anything else, “shots would be fired.” She proceeded to follow him upstairs

    That right there should have put that dumb cunt in jail on assault and trespassing charges.

    Yeah,yeah, I know.

    1. In a just world someone would drop a house on each of those officers who didn’t immediately say “This is fucking ridiculous” and walk the CPS lady to her car.

      1. Yeah, and put the video on Youtube as a warning to future Stalinst-wannabes.

    2. She proceeded to follow him upstairs.

      Tough do to in the moment, but its a shame the father didn’t turn to her and say:

      “I thought I was pretty clear. Until you have a warrant, you don’t come in my house. Get the fuck out right now.

      Oh, and its probably a bad idea to threaten to kill people before they have done anything threatening at all. Is that department policy, or just your approach to “protect and serve”?”

    3. It’s easy for me at the other end of Maryland and without kids to worry about to say this, but this is where in my fantasy I tell the cop to leave my property before I shoot her for armed trespass.

      This comes up pretty frequently in my head simply because I live in the urban part of a small town with a significant police presence that manages to combine COPS with The Andy Griffith Show. Case in point, last winter the local PD announced that it would be checking the locks on parked cars and issuing tickets to any unlocked vehicles. They’d also be impounding vehicles found running without a driver inside, i.e. warming up. To prevent them from being stolen, and I’m not making that up. They issued the notice as a Facebook status update, by the way.

      When I asked, they made no exception for cars in driveways, to which I replied that a motor vehicle on private property doesn’t even need to have tags let alone be accompanied by the driver, and any attempt to remove a vehicle from the premises would be theft and should be dealt with accordingly. It didn’t go over well, but it did start a Facebook riot that drove the PD to “clarify” the policy out of existence.

      1. Yeah, there is no law enforcement exemption to Grand Theft charges.

  23. We are good parents, educated professionals, and our children are happy, healthy, well-adjusted, and academically successful.

    That puts you on the extreme left of the bell curve. The middle of the curve is filled with morons.

    Which is why democracy is a rather silly idea.

  24. Sounds like the police and CPS are staffed by kiddie diddlers.

    1. They often are. I was once engaged to a woman who had many members of her immediate family working for CPS. They were sick, abusive, manipulative people.

      People like this exist to work the system and victimize others. Destroy them where you find them.

      1. Lord Acton got it slightly wrong. It’s not that power corrupts, but that power is irresistible to the easily corrupted.

  25. I just got paid USD 6784 working off my laptop this month. And if you think that’s cool, my divorced friend has twin toddlers and made over USD 9k her first month. It feels so good making so much money when other people have to work for so much less. This is what I do
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  26. “Child Services Still Hounding Couple Who Let Their Kids Play Outside”

    Of course. That’s what they do. Much like Garner, they made the mistake of not immediately bending over to Power. Now they’re going to be bent over, held down, and fucked with a rusty pipe.

    BFYTW.

  27. There are a lot of problems on this one. If the officers took action on their own, they should be fired. If this is how they are expected to response, the chief of police should be fired. An response from child services is reasonable, but when it gets to threats and signing binding agreements it rises to a level where heads at child service should roll. I mean fire them. These type of people need to be flushed out of government jobs where they have influence.

    1. If someone ever wants you to sign something under duress (implied or actual), write “without prejudice” along with your signature.

      If the authorities are trying to railroad you, it gives you a layer of legal protection — essentially saying ‘yeah I signed it but I’m not waiving any rights by doing so’ in a way that will be obvious to any judge or lawyer that sees the document.

      If they’re not trying to railroad you, it does no harm other than perhaps making a judge decide to ask you if you signed under duress.

      It’s not a bad habit to get into when signing any official document or contract.

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  29. People wonder why our countries have falling birthrates. Then you read about Soviet-style crap like this happening, and suddenly it’s not such a mystery. I’m not all that eager to start a family anymore – who needs the Glorious State Socialist Child Protection Pinheads looking over your shoulder 24/7?

    1. I’d argue falling birthrates are better predicted by higher incomes, access to birth control and the finances of your would-be starter families.

      Although it would be interesting to find out whether things like this have a chilling effect on would-be parents.

      1. I think it does indirectly. Not the threat of CPS, but the entire culture of needing to stand over your kid 24/7, and be involved and actively engaged in every little thing your kid does. I see moms who have two kids, and they stay home and spend every minute of their day “creating an environment” for their kids. They tell me their schedules, and just *hearing it* is exhausting for me.

        And they look at me, with eight kids, and they think I’m doing all of *that* TIMES EIGHT. I’m not. I have no intention of doing that. I didn’t do that when I had two kids. I haven’t played Candyland since I was six years old. But these people can’t imagine that. They think I’m either SUPERMOM, or I’m “neglecting” my kids’ oh-so-important-need to be the center of my attention every moment of the day.

        And I definitely think that plays at least some part in people having smaller families.

        1. That’s an interesting way to look at it, and I think you’re on to something there.

        2. First of all – bravo on your eight kids. That’s got to be a lot to handle regardless of whether you’re “creating an environment”.

          I don’t have any kids but have often thought that maybe its not worth having any because of the paranoid climate of the U.S. these days. I think I’m probably the exception rather than the rule, however. I think most people are oblivious about the common violations of parent’s rights.

          Your average CNN, MSNBC, Fox News viewer is totally oblivious about these kinds of occurrences. Most probably think the CPS is necessary and does good work.

  30. I grew up in Virginia suburbs two counties away from Montgomery and never ran into anything like this. During the summer, I went outside with friends around 8AM and didn’t come home until dark. This was when I was 7 through 12 years old.

    The home owners association had cut down the hoops from a basketball court behind my friends house (claiming that drug use was taking place — which was a lie), effectively making the court useless. My friends and I pooled our allowances to buy wood and PVC pipe to make a skate park. It lasted for 2 years until the Home Owners Association threw out all of our work one night. They stole over $200 worth of stuff from their own neighborhood’s children… didn’t even give us a warning or a chance to save any of our equipment.

    We were voluntarily doing healthy outdoor activities for around 8 hours a day. It makes me sick how adults complain about their children’s lack of physical activity but then pull shit like this.

    Adults suck. Adults with even the smallest minutiae of power suck even more. Fuck the CPS.

    1. Homeowners’ associations are almost as evil as CPS. In both cases, they are invariably staffed by meddling busybodies who think they know far better how to run your life than you yourself do.

      1. Yeah, luckily they can’t take children away from their parents. If they could, I’m sure they would have simply to have a quieter neighborhood.

  31. I just got paid USD 6784 working off my laptop this month. And if you think that’s cool, my divorced friend has twin toddlers and made over USD 9k her first month. It feels so good making so much money when other people have to work for so much less. This is what I do
    ===================
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  32. I just got paid USD 6784 working off my laptop this month. And if you think that’s cool, my divorced friend has twin toddlers and made over USD 9k her first month. It feels so good making so much money when other people have to work for so much less. This is what I do
    ===================
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  33. The first mistake they made was talking to the police or government officials without counsel present. Whenever you are in a confrontational situation with representatives of the government, you say, “I am exercising my right to remain silent. I will not speak to you further without counsel present.” And then you shut up.

    And if they take the kids to the PD, sucks, but you’ll get them back if you keep your mouth shut and don’t fall into any of their traps. But once you say anything, they’ll use it against you in court; and gawd help you if you SIGN something! Then you’re well and truly fucked.

    I am curious, however, about the testimony of children unaware of their rights and not in the presence of their parents. Even if you tell your kid not to talk, he’s not going to understand why and probably won’t be able to keep his mouth shut anyway.

    1. If they take the kids BECAUSE you exercised a constitutional right and expected them to obey the law, they committed a felony — conspiracy against rights under color of law (18 USC 241).

      If they demand you sign something, write “without prejudice” on the same line as your signature.

      It basically means you are not giving up any of your rights despite signing, and is typically used as a red flag when signing something under duress. Any lawyer or judge worth their law degree will instantly recognize it as being signed under duress and act accordingly.

  34. When I was ten years old I was riding my bike miles and miles away from home. We’d go to the comic book store, a good eight mile round trip, and nobody ever bothered us, least of all the cops.

    But hey, “It’s for the children” is still the best and most disingenuous argument for removing our constitutional rights, as this poor family is finding out.

    1. You never hear about these nosy neighbors calling the cops for kids riding bikes, they only call the cops when the kids are walking. It’s as if kids only walk when they are abandoned or lost.

  35. When I read stories like this it makes my blood boil. I really do think the only way we can get this country back to normal is to use violence towards these unelected bureaucrats. A lot of these people they finally get a job where they have authority and it goes there their head and they abuse it. I believe eye for a eye.

    1. Invasive government officials like this need to be identified and destroyed. They need to be subject to constant harassment and scrutiny.

      People like that should be afraid to leave their house.

  36. It’s pretty funny and misguided that some want to turn an issue like this into a conservative/liberal one. Conservatives may want to blame the “liberal nanny-state” and liberals might blame “conservative fear mongering.” Freedom to raise empowered, competent children who can explore their world is an issue that crosses political lines. Basic civil liberties are supported by both sides. Privacy is valued by both sides. The ACLU is a progressive organization formed in the 1950’s as a response to McCarthyism. They are still going strong and have defended the civil liberties of everyone, from the KKK to the Nat’l Socialist Party. A lot of civil liberties rights are fought for by people coming from diverse ideologies. Not everything has to be either/or!

    1. Ironically, McCarthy prevented the sort of Marxist statist traitors who work for CPS. God, how I miss him.

  37. Day after day there is some tyrannical government employee actively working to destroy someone – simply because they did not submit and bow instantly and had the audacity to vocalize their constitutional rights. Never question master.

  38. Here’s the latest from the mom, Danielle Meitiv, who is hoping the rest of the media takes note. I hope so, too.

    Great, we are updated. Now, since you are the media, what have you done other than reprint an email? Have you contacted the CPS and asked the hard questions?

  39. Have the Meitivs requested any of the documentation associated with the CPS investigation? Have they shared that material with Reason? I don’t think CPS can share that material with Reason, but some more robust journalism might be possible if the Meitivs helped Reason to hear from someone other than themselves. Help us sound informed when we contact our elected officials here in MoCo.

    http://www.dhr.state.md.us/blog/?page_id=4023

  40. Better yet, hire a couple of Hell’s Angels from three states away to come in the dead of night and beat that caseworker half to death. Nothing like swift blinding violence in response to tyranny. Just don’t get caught.

    1. Hello ATF/FBI. Caught anyone with your sting yet?

      1. To avoid that get friends of friends. I figure even if most people don’t know some patched up pipe hittin’ mofos, they know someone who does. Always go with references.

        Especially for that sort of thing.

    2. A better way would be to arrest the CPS agent and police officer bodyguard who threatens to take your kids because you insisted that CPS obey the law.

      It’s legal to make a citizen’s arrest for a felony in every state except North Carolina. What crime you ask? Google “18 USC 241” — the Department of Justice has an excellent writeup on it.

  41. Where are the t-shirts for all the schoolchildren in the style of the I Can’t Breathe movement that say “I Can’t PLAY”?

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  43. All for letting their kids play in a park.

    And then the government demands we get kids moving to fight fatness.

    Of course, they will get to define what ‘moving’ entails.

    Man things are so wildly fucked up.

    1. Don’t forget, CPS considers ‘allowing’ your kids to become obese to be child abuse.

      You can’t win when every time you allow your kids to exercise and every time you don’t allow them to yields the same result.

  44. One unintentionally funny moment from the (IMO) dreadful final season of “Sons of Anarchy” involved the CPS coming to investigate the leader of the outlaw biker gang. This guy had killed probably 100 people during the course of seven seasons (and in cocky, bravado-heavy fashion) but the character manifested this absurd level of fear of the CPS.

    It was unintentionally funny in that the hack writers of this show clearly were not playing this for laughs. It other words the dichotomy of “badass mass killing badass motherfucker” being terrified of CPS was probably not what they were shooting for.

    Instead, it is just such accepted knowledge that the Child Protective Nazis are pretty close to the worst thing on earth that – yes, the guy would obviously be terrified of them.

    I don’t have kids and never plan to, but if I did then emigration probably would be in order. I don’t think I could restrain myself if confronted with this sort of crap.

  45. CPS likes to claim that every action they take is under exigent circumstances or is an emergency action, therefore they don’t need warrants. But that’s just not true.

    CPS is in the same class of agencies as police departments, and while it would very much streamline police and CPS procedures if they never needed warrants, the fourth amendment exists for good reasons. Even when children are allegedly at risk. Likewise, while a CPS agent can take children without due process in an emergency, not every refusal to cooperate is an emergency — a child being beaten in front of the agent is such an emergency, but simply telling the agent you expect them to obey the law is not.

    When a CPS agent tells you that if you invoke your rights your children will be taken, that agent has committed a federal crime punishable by a year in prison (18 USC 242). If they actually try to take your children for standing on your rights, odds are they won’t do it all by themselves and as soon as a second person is involved in their violation of your rights, then the agent and EVERY person assisting them is guilty of a FELONY (18 USC 241) — by any standard (including those used by law enforcement officials in all fifty states and the federal government as well) a crime punishable by ten years in federal prison IS a felony!

    1. And these felonies will be tried in a government courtroom presided over by a government judge with a government-convened grand jury. Good luck.

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    http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..tid=pm_pop

    1. I e-mailed Post columnist Petula Dvorak yesterday after reading this. I don’t know if she had anything to do with the news article, but she has a column on-line: http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..story.html

  50. When he disagreed with one of the officers about the dangers that walking alone posed to children, she asked him: “Don’t you realize how dangerous the world is? Don’t you watch TV?”

    Well,you have to admit that he has a point. If you let your kids walk by themselves on the street, there’s a substantial risk that they will be abducted by armed, dangerous men. Who wear badges and drive cop cars.

  51. Me and some other fed up Maryland parents are going to try and do something about this madness – sign up to get help us get the law changed: http://goo.gl/forms/RYmM3Tt30e

  52. This kind of abuse will stop when enough people with enough weapons take action to stop it, and no sooner.

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  54. There are no *rights* where CPS is concerned. What we have allowed is an administrative system to exist that has become a veritable Star Chamber in the US. You do not have the right to remain silent. You do not have the right to be judged by a jury of your peers. You are not innocent until proven guilty. This entire system was created by the Mondale Act of 1974 which allows CPS to act as administrative entity if there is “Abuse or Possiblity of Abuse”. The word possibility is what opens up the entire program to subject interpretation. Imagine anywhere else in America where a system is built on a possibility? A system that can remove a child from it’s parents without a trial or representation. Our police cannot act in such a manner- an accused has rights. Why are we allowing this with our children?

    1. The family court system is supposed to decide all cases in “the best interests of the child”. And who decides what the best interests of the child are? Well CPS, of course. The parent’s opinions don’t matter at all.

      How’s that feel? Someone else, some faceless bureaucrat, gets to decide what is in YOUR child’s best interests. And they can take the kid away if THEIR opinion differs from yours.

  55. Glad to see so many comments on this post! Danielle needs our support. She is mistaken about one matter, however, in her last sentence. We may think we have rights, because the Constitution is still formally in place, but in fact the only rights we have are those the government grants in a particular situation. When Child Protective Services or the police give you an order, carry out a policy, or conduct themselves in any way they like, your rights will not protect you. Police and CPS authority will prevail, as the story Danielle tells indicates. Police and CPS will push their authority as far as they can, without regard for your rights. Your measured resistance is outstanding. If CPS does not back down, I hope you can find an effective lawyer, and a judge or other official who is sympathetic to your position.

    Steady resistance is all we have left. Constitutional rights no longer protect us.

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  57. If you have done nothing wrong or illegal, then you should have NOTHING to worry about. Why not just give your ID to the police so they can see you are who you say, and that you have no warrants pending for any criminal activity? It is a very dangerous world these days and allowing any child to walk alone may raise question from any body. They don’t know what you have taught your children, or if they know how to stay safe. Just cooperate with the authorities, and if you are innocent you should have NOTHING to worry about. If you act guilty, they WILL assume you have something to hide. Only a JUDGE can order your children be removed. Don’t give them a reason.

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