Precinct 333

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Judicially Sanctioned Child Abuse

Evan Scott was kidnapped Saturday morning, ripped from the arms of his parents and carried off by a virtual stranger. This happened before a crowd of reporters and television cameras, at the order of a judge.

ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. — The adoptive mother of a 31/2-year-old boy at the center of a custody dispute tearfully handed the boy to his biological mother on Saturday, then dropped to the ground and repeatedly screamed: "How can they do this to a little boy?"

Evan, bundled in a blue jacket and sucking on a pacifier, was carried outside by Dawn Scott, who along with her husband, Gene, cared for the child for most of his life. The couple had appealed a judge's ruling transferring custody to the biological mother, Amanda Hopkins.

News crews gathered around the Scotts' home Saturday morning in anticipation of the meeting, and the child's biological father and grandfather pushed a television cameraman out of the way during the transfer.

How could this have happened?

As I pointed out in an earlier post, Evan's mother gave up the child for adoption while Stephen White, the violence-prone sire of the boy, was in jail for physically abusing her. Shortly before the adoption was to become final, the abusive sperm-donor who had taken no interest in the child asserted a claim over teh boy and demanded that the child be ripped from the only home he had ever known. The Florida courts were willing to go along with the charade, and were prepared to give the abuser custody of the child until Amanda asserted her claim to custody of the child. Ignoring the best interests of the child, Amanda was awarded custody and the violent thug was granted visitation.

In the whole process, the only people who have actually advocated for the best interests of the child have been Gene and Dawn Scott, who have raised, nurtured, and loved little Evan. They are the only people who have treated this little boy like a human being, worthy of dignity respect, and consideration.

Gene Scott called it a "very emotional, traumatic situation" and said the family would continue their legal fight.

"If they truly loved him, they wouldn't have done this," he said, tears welled in his eyes.

I couldn't have said it better. Pray for little Evan, and for Gene and Dawn Scott. And trust that there is a just God who will appropriately deal with Amanda Hopkins, Stephen White, and the judge who gave this order.


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