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Indigenous Oaxacan Woman Sues Missisippi Hospital For Taking Her Baby

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meegbear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:49 AM
Original message
Indigenous Oaxacan Woman Sues Missisippi Hospital For Taking Her Baby
Hey, here's a thought: why not start taking the babies of immigrant women and giving them to white lawyers? Why bother with, say, translating their statements at the hospital or worrying about their rights? Why not just snatch up the newborn, whisk it away, and shoo the mother out onto the streets?

Such was the philosophy of the Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) which, incredibly, with virtually no hard evidence, took Cirila Baltazar Cruz' baby from her and gave it to Wendy and Douglas Tynes, a pair of white attorneys looking to adopt.

The story must send a chill of terror down the spine of any expecting mother, and it serves as a reminder of just how vulnerable women (and immigrant women in particular) are to the hospitals that are supposedly there to help and protect them.

After the birth of her baby, Cruz gave a statement to a hospital translator. The translator couldn't understand her, since Cruz only speaks Chatino, an indigenous language from the state of Oaxaca. So Cruz brought in a relative who speaks Chatino, but the hospital turned down his offer to translate.

The Puerto Rican translator concluded from a statement she could not understand that Chatino was a prostitute (aren't all immigrant mothers, y'know?) and was planning to give the baby up for adoption. Chatino, meanwhile, was trying to explain that she actually worked at a Chinese restaurant, lived in an apartment, and wanted to keep the baby. The translator's interpretation gave the MDHS what they needed to take the baby. Allegedly, they colluded with the Tynes and a judge to deny Cruz custody and give the child to the white couple.

It took Cruz a year to regain custody of her daughter, via a lawsuit filed with the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Mississippi Immigrant Rights Alliance. She and her daughter are now living in Mexico.

<snip>

http://womensrights.change.org/blog/view/indigenous_oax...
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H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:51 AM
Response to Original message
1. Thet is terrible.
Thanks to the SPLC and MIRA for helping.
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shraby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:53 AM
Response to Original message
2. This should have been front page news a long time ago.
It's the most despicable thing I've heard in a long time.
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:01 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Unbelievable
:cry:
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PassingFair Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:56 AM
Response to Original message
3. But...I thought "they" just like to drop them here and run...
Do "immigrants" love their offspring?

Wonders never cease.

:sarcasm:
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WillParkinson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:02 AM
Response to Original message
5. Oh please, they're only immigrants...
Why on earth should they have rights? I'm guessing it was an anchor baby, too! Repeal the 14th amendment!!!!

:sarcasm: though I hope it's not really necessary.
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Panaconda Donating Member (672 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:05 AM
Response to Original message
6. Disgusting
Easy to see where all this anti-immigration sentiment takes us.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:16 AM
Response to Original message
7. Those lawyers should be disbarred.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:25 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Because...

Go ahead, explain why the SPLC was, in your opinion, too stupid to name them in the suit.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #8
13. Lawyers are suppose to be held to a higher legal standard.
What's more curious is that they picked lawyers for the parents. Why would they do that? Is it because they knew these lawyers could present quite a legal fight to keep the baby? What a gamble, eh? Because now these lawyers can sue for the mess up. That is, unless they want everything just to go away.

I don't have a good taste in my mouth when it comes to lawyers. Too many in my area are corrupt beyond words.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:36 PM
Response to Reply #13
17. I see...
Edited on Tue Aug-31-10 01:08 PM by jberryhill
So when a court appoints a lawyer to defend a criminal suspect, that lawyer is really working to get the suspect convicted?

Courts ask lawyers to do things all of the time. I once had a judge ask me to mediate a dispute, simply because I happened to be in the courtroom for an entirely different reason.

The lawyers in question (who are now divorced, btw) didn't put up any sort of "fight to keep the baby", and are not defendants in the suit.

One of those "higher standards" to which lawyers are held is - when a court tells you to do something, you do it.

But you didn't answer my question - why do you suppose the SPLC didn't name the attorneys as defendants in the suit?
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #17
25. Do you really, see?
Edited on Tue Aug-31-10 04:17 PM by The Backlash Cometh
That's the thing about legal ethics. You ask me why the attorneys weren't called in as defendants. Well, judging by how they do it in my area, it's because someone cut a deal under the table. I figure if you all aren't going to clean up your own professional mess, you all get to be stained by the same broad brush.

And btw, most people assume they aren't going to get the best representation with a court appointed attorney.

Those attorneys who are really driven by an ethnical (such a not intended pun, but it works for me) cause or crusade generally stand out above the rest. Though it's not too difficult to do when everyone else is barely above the gutter.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 06:10 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. So, the Southern Poverty Law Center is corrupt...
Edited on Tue Aug-31-10 06:11 PM by jberryhill

...and cut a deal with the attorneys in question not to name the attorneys as defendants?

Do you suppose the SPLC took money for this, or what?

Do you have the foggiest notion how civil suits work?

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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. Sure. I know how civil suits work.
Especially if lawyers are involved. A truly guilty lawyer will talk off the record to his defense attorneys BEFORE discovery. So the defense attorneys will rush into a million dollar settlement agreement as long as they can slap on a confidentiality clause and get the federal judge to adjudge that there's nothing to see here, move along. Isn't that how it works everywhere?

I'm sure the SPLC is above all this, but, I hold judgment until I see all the redactions.

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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:33 PM
Response to Reply #27
28. Okay, thanks for answering
Edited on Tue Aug-31-10 07:35 PM by jberryhill
No, you don't know how they work.

The Tynes' were never named as defendants, there is nothing to "settle" with them.

Any conversation with one's own attorney is "off the record", so I don't quite follow that bit.

This bit is interesting:

"So the defense attorneys will rush into a million dollar settlement agreement as long as they can slap on a confidentiality clause and get the federal judge to adjudge that there's nothing to see here"

You do understand that the point of a civil suit is to obtain a pile of money, yes? That's all a lawsuit does - it moves money from one side of the courtroom to the other. But, regardless of the fact that no claim was ever brought against the Tynes', you seem to think there is something untoward about people agreeing to move that money without using a court to do it.

I'm guessing you believe that while various authorities were harassing Ms. Cruz, the baby should have been left on a sidewalk somewhere instead of in foster care.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 07:50 PM
Response to Reply #28
29. This case has open questions.
Even you noticed it.

I brought up two possibilities. The first, that lawyers were selected precisely because someone envisioned that their legal occupation would scare off anyone from challenging the adoption. If I was wrong and they were innocent, why aren't they suing? Maybe they did and that's the reason why there are so many redactions? Until we know what's redacted we can't possibly know exactly where they fit in this story.

I'm not willing to see them painted as innocent parties just because they weren't called in as defendants.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:31 PM
Response to Reply #29
30. Of course not


Because you have a generalized dislike of lawyers, so all and each of them is up to no good.

This notion of selecting lawyers out of some "scare factor" makes very little sense to me. First of all,the child has already been with the mother for quite some time, and lawyers don't litigate as a personal hobby. It doesn't pay very well. Secondly, because of the precise fact that they are lawyers is a good reason not to use them in a nefarious scheme, since there are consequences for lawyers which go beyond those of non-lawyers if they get nailed for it. In any legal situation involving a lawyer as a party, you have a lot more leverage over that lawyer than I think you realize.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-01-10 07:16 AM
Response to Reply #30
33. I don't disagree that the world is better for you if you have a good lawyer.
And that's the thing. Lawyers are not paying the consequences of breaching their legal ethics and are involved in large fraud and conspiracy schemes in my area. How can that stand if they're any good at policing themselves? The answer is, they know the loopholes and use it to their advantage. They're crooks with a license.
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msanthrope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:39 PM
Response to Reply #13
18. What makes you think the attorney couple aren't victims, too?
There's been plenty of stories in the news about social services screwing over foster parents and adoptive parents--lying about where children are from, their issues, their medical conditions.

think about it this way--even with two lawyers, the baby went back to its mother in a year. I've handled custody fights that took MUCH, MUCH longer.

It's entirely possible that this couple simply were not told of the circumstances, and were shocked and horrified when it became apparent to them what was really going on. Their marriage broke up....and I look to the fact that the SPLC hasn't named them as a party.....

Finally, I looked at the complaint, and it's redacted like all hell. It makes me suspicious that someone (the attorney couple) provided the SPLC with direct evidence of the judge's collusion....because let's face it, who is in position to provide such evidence????

The attorney couple.
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 01:05 PM
Response to Reply #18
19. I uploaded the Complaint to RECAP, btw

If you are not familiar with RECAP, it is a great way to avoid having people pay multiple PACER fees for the same document.

https://www.recapthelaw.org /

Basically, it uploads your downloaded PACER documents to archive.org, and then there is a public URL for the filings.

Complaint RECAP'ed to:

http://www.archive.org/download/gov.uscourts.mssd.72957...

There is a motion for the court to consider whether the complaint should be unredacted.

Once in a while, though, you catch a complaint before a motion to seal by the other side, which can be amusing.

I agree. There is a reason the attorneys are not named as defendants.
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msanthrope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #19
20. Thank you--I was not familiar with the site, I will now consider Firefox.
And it does make you wonder why the complaint was redacted--I'm betting to save some serious judge/social services ass.

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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 01:54 PM
Response to Reply #20
21. Or incorporation of material from the Family Court (or equivalent) file

If the Family Court (or whatever they call it) file is sealed, then materials from that file cited in a normal civil complaint should be redacted. The complaint is filed with a motion to consider non-redaction.
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CanonRay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 08:27 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Just you wait, in 21 years, that baby is coming back
and bringing her mother! :rofl:
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:19 PM
Response to Reply #9
14. I have no idea what laugh track you're on.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #9
24. so not funny.
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Soylent Brice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 09:12 AM
Response to Original message
10. whaaaat a country!!
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 09:54 AM
Response to Original message
11. Chillingly horrifying.....NEXT STEP: Forced sterilization.
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ellie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 10:40 AM
Response to Original message
12. Fucking disgusting
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Kajsa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:30 PM
Response to Original message
15. This is awful,
inhumane and disgraceful!!

And it's reminding me, even with a very limited income,
to contribute something to SPLC.

Morris Dees and his staff are fantastic!
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Iggo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 12:35 PM
Response to Original message
16. Go Mis'sip!!!!
Jeezusaychkeeeryste!!!!!
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REP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
22. But gee, I thought no woman was forced to relinquish her baby for adoption
:sarcasm:

But hey, it only took a year to get her child back ...

There's something very wrong with the adoption racket in this country. If people didn't think they were so entitled to a baby at any cost, and babies weren't viewed as commodities, maybe this wouldn't happen.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 02:06 PM
Response to Original message
23. wtf? horrific.
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KakistocracyHater Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 09:26 PM
Response to Original message
31. good for her, hope they don't win by delaying her case & I'll repeat what I
said before: how about taking away the babies from the Quiverfulls?
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nashville_brook Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Aug-31-10 10:20 PM
Response to Original message
32. everyday A Handmaid's Tale become less fiction-y
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