The following story is really horrible if you’re a parent. A lot of things that might seem funny suddenly don’t look that way when little kids are involved.
A woman, intoxicated and pregnant, was carrying her toddler around in the cold rain with nothing but a pair of dirty diapers and a t-shirt — at 3AM! So, some man (probably a father) saw her and asked what the hell she was doing with the kid in that weather.
At 3 o’clock on the morning of the incident, a man in the 3700 block of South 144th Street called Tukwila police after spotting Woldeab carrying her child, who was wearing only a diaper and T-shirt despite the chilly weather, a Tukwila detective told the court. Concerned for the child’s safety, the man called out to Woldeab.
“What the hell are you doing with your baby out like that?” he yelled.
Woldeab broke into a run but tripped, dropping her daughter and landing on top of her, the detective continued. The witness approached Woldeab, according to charging documents, prompting her to shout, “Don’t take my baby!”
Woldeab then threw her purse at the man and raced into a nearby parking lot, where she dropped her daughter again, the detective told the court. She picked the child back up, but then tossed her into thorny bushes before stepping inside a gas station nearby.
Tukwila police arrived to find Woldeab running onto Tukwila International Boulevard with the toddler tucked under her arm “like a bag,” the detective told the court. When an oncoming car stopped to avoid hitting Woldeab, she threw her child through its open window.
“The child struck the side of the car with her head and fell limply into an open window, partially hanging out of the vehicle,” the Tukwila detective told the court. “The child was not moving or making any noise.”
Woldeab then jumped into the car and told the driver – a stranger to her – to drive away. The man did not oblige her, and the first officer to arrive snatched up the injured child.
By then, the toddler had sustained several cuts and bruises to her face, and had a tennis ball-sized lump rising from her head. The detective noted the girl was also covered in feces.
Having secured the child in a patrol car, the officer returned to the other vehicle and pulled Woldeab from it. Woldeab was handcuffed and arrested; police later found a bottle of spoiled milk in her purse.
The child was placed in state custody.
This is about as bad as it gets short of killing the kid. And she’s pregnant with another one…
The fact that she’s pregnant presents a real dilemma for feminists and our courts. On the one hand, the courts are supposed to act “in the best interests of the child,” but according to feminists it’s “her body” to do with as she pleases. As for the toddler, of course that kid has to be removed from her, and hopefully handed to the father (if he’s not in jail or also habitually intoxicated).
However, what about the child in her womb? If you let her out of jail, chances are she’s going to get loaded again, possibly causing irreparable damage to the child’s organs. So, if you want to protect the infant, the best course is to deny bail and keep her locked up until she gives birth. But that would be to deny her “agency,” and after all it’s “her body.”
So where would a feminist stand in this case? What’s more important, the woman’s freedom to do as she pleases or the health and safety of the unborn child?
If I were a judge, I know what I would do. I’d order her locked up in a women’s prison until she gave birth, then take the child and give it to the father, or if he refused put it up for adoption. It wouldn’t be a difficult decision at all. But I guarantee that there will be some real legal drama over this case, because mothers – no matter how bad – are privileged in our society.
It’s nothing for a judge to remove a child from a father, but take a drunk, abusive, train wreck of a woman, and they will bend over backward to try to work something out. It is this mandate that children must always be with their mothers that is responsible for a great many child fatalities.
In a sense, I agree with the mandate. It shouldn’t be easy to take a child from a parent. But when the courts so easily and casually take children from fathers, including protective fathers who want the best for their children, yet at the same time go to great lengths to keep children with questionable mothers, it really gives the lie to the “best interests of the child” doctrine.