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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Domestic Violence: What Else Is War Good For?

The accused, Kirk Coleman

This is why we should not be sending the young of our nation off to fight meaningless and unneeded wars to prop up the egos of some pathetic old men and the financial fortunes of their friends. This is why we need to make sure that if we send our children or siblings or neighbours or friends to get fucked up in the head, we need to ensure that they have mental health services for as long as they need them.

Deity alone knows what he did to that poor child. The article says that, among her injuries:
The girl sustained brain damage and 17 broken bones and is undergoing therapy. [...].

Coleman allegedly told investigators he blacked out after drinking heavily and taking pain killers and awoke to find the injured baby in her crib, The Jackson Citizen Patriot reported.
Prosecutors and Blackman Township investigators allege Coleman, 27, assaulted the baby on several occasions in September while his wife, Ashley Rogers, was away from their apartment. So this was not a one-time incident. He's been bound over for trial.

On whose authority was this man released to his wife and family? Didn't his superiors &mdash didn't the Army &mdash notice that there was something grievously wrong with him? Did he do something similar in Iraq, perhaps?

This is the end of his life, which is sad enough. Because he will be proved to be a sex offender, regardless of whether he is convicted of this particular crime. Sadder still, it is the end of the life of a three-month-old girl, who suffered bleeding on the brain because her own father assaulted her. Her mental capacity will always be affected. Who knows what these assaults have done to her emotional development. That her physical well-being is no more is a given.

What about her mother? This child was probably conceived when this couple had a reasonably happy relationship and a life to look forward to as partners and co-parents. Can this woman ever trust a man around her damaged child again? Can she ever find a relationship again? She is going to be saddled with the care and feeding of a brain-damaged child for the rest of the child's natural life.

If you have never had to look after a disabled person, you can be forgiven, possibly, for thinking that it's not such a big deal. But we can tell you, it is a big deal. A very big deal. For 24 hours a day, seven days a week, as long as this girl lives &mdash which may or may not be a normal lifespan of sixty to eighty years more &mdash someone will probably have to feed her, change her, turn her over in bed every X hours so she doesn't develop bedsores, clean her, bathe her, amuse and entertain her, and take her everywhere she needs to go.

Depending on the extent of her brain damage, she may never be able to fend for herself. Thus she may be a burden not just to her mother, but to her mother's family, and her community and ultimately society at large. She may be unable to speak, or read and write, or possibly even to swallow without assistance. MichiganLive notes that the baby's mother, according to testimony
[...] admitted she was depressed and drank alcohol excessively after the baby was born June 11.

The couple, who met in North Carolina where Coleman was stationed at Fort Bragg, married two weeks after the birth. She filed divorce papers in late September.

The now 8-month-old girl lives with Rogers' mother, a North Carolina resident who moved here temporarily. Rogers (the child's mother) is allowed court-ordered visits, and is working toward eventually moving back to North Carolina with her mother and child.
This is what we are laying up for ourselves as a society. We are bringing home our children from the charnel-house and letting them loose upon ourselves and our other children, and they will be worse than wild beasts to them.

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