Time for Strangers to Leave Veronica Capobianco Alone
Additional Clarification: This article was not about the gathering mentioned. No one there was fixated or glamoring on her as she played happily with her friends. Mentioning it was merely a context with which to express thoughts I had concerning I – MYSELF – being a stranger to her. I – MYSELF – thought it best not to approach her, and didn’t. Point in Fact – the article addresses the obsession some very sick online forums continue to have for her, including a site called “Standing Ground for Veronica Brown” which promotes nonsensical protests and discussions on non-existent conspiracies and litigation. THOSE PEOPLE are, indeed, scary and behaving very creepy.
10/27/2013 – Another note – it wasn’t a “CAICW Fundraiser” as a couple people have foolishly proclaimed to others. If it was – I would have been a HOST, not a guest.
It was neither a CAICW event, nor a fundraiser.
Hello? The case has been over for a month now. No one is fundraising for it. Believe it or not – gatherings occur for myriad reasons – most of which have nothing to do with money.
THIS assumption and obsessive gossip is an example of how creepy some wigged out strangers have been. It is truly disconcerting the crazy things they come up with and encourage each other in.
They continue to scrutinize and demonize every normal, average, mundane thing they find concerning this finished case; ignoring common sense and twisting facts to justify their conspiracy theories.
Did the leaders of these forums get relish from the attention they received over the months, and are now reluctant to let that attention go?
There is great comfort in knowing that law enforcement is keeping an eye on the sites and insane chatter. All too often, this kind of crazy talk has turned into tragedy.
God be with and protect the family.
An additional note concerning a gathering Saturday night: I didn’t mention Veronica much in the post. This is why –
She was there – playing in the pool with other children. I decided not to approach her. I feel sick about the number of non-family members who have pawed over her these last 20 months and I don’t want to be one of them. I am a stranger to her, and she doesn’t need another stranger.
The number of people who continue to be obsessed with her – even now, after all is done – is both scary and creepy. There is no point to rehashing everything over and over.
It is especially creepy when people who have never interacted with her on anything more than a superficial level – let alone those who have never even met her – are pretending to know what she thinks and feels.
From a distance of four feet, without speaking to her, Veronica seemed happy and well. That’s all I can say. I have no right to suppose anything deeper. As a mother and grandmother, I venture to guess she will be even more happy and well once this is all finally put behind and the Capobiancos can move forward, living as normal a family life as can be possible.
It is time to move on and leave Veronica Capobianco with those who know and love her – and who she seems to not only know and feel very comfortable with – but loves in return.
Veronica is no longer in need – but we know several other children who are. They need help now, today.
The Legal Fund has been very successful this last month. In the case of the grandmother fighting to keep custody of her 7-year-old grandson – it was especially evident the tremendous difference the counsel they received made. They could not afford a local attorney at all. So the $300 they received from our legal fund – for counsel with a very good ICWA attorney – was all that they had. They went forward in court as their own counsel.
That was the best $300 we have ever spent. The outcome was tremendous. The family was able to refute not only County and tribal social services, but the misinformation concerning ICWA that even the District Attorney was espousing. And the judge listened!
It isn’t all finished yet, but it appears that the little boy will be able to stay with his grandmother.
THANK YOU DONORS! To date we have helped FIVE families.
PLEASE consider additional donations to the fund. We have more families needing it.
Kat. I’m a parent – I’m not adopted, nor have I adopted a child. I also know that many of the others who thought ICWA was misapplied in Veronica’s case are also not people who’ve adopted or trying to adopt. We want ICWA changed because all children should have equal rights – and a tribe’s rights shouldn’t outweigh the rights of a child.
While I do agree Veronica should never be approached by strangers, I do not agree with anything else. The ICWA should NEVER be changed. The fact is, only those who can not conceive their own children want this changed. The majority of others do not. It is my mission to not only have ICWA strengthened, but also to make sure this doesn’t happen to OTHER families who are not Native American. Child Trafficking is wrong, and what Godwin is doing is just that.
I understand your position, but it isn’t true that only adoptive couples want this law changed. Many, many birth parents want it changed. My husband, 100% Minnesota Chippewa born and raised on the rez, speaking only Ojibwe until he began kindergarten, wanted ICWA changed. He is on record saying so in front of the Senate Committee in the late 1990’s. He did not want tribal government to have any jurisdiction over his children, and he had good reason for feeling that way. Further, many parents called him through the years and told him that they felt the same way.
Further, as his wife, that means I am the birth mother of enrollable children – and the grandmother of enrollable grandchildren. I am their birth mother. I – and thousands of mothers like me – do not want tribal government to interfere in the lives of our families. WE have family members and traditions as well. WE are tired of the incessant insult that our families and traditions don’t matter.
ALL of our children’s relatives are important. 100% of a child’s heritage is valuable.
My husband and I began our fight in the 1990’s out of fear of what would happen to our children if both of us should die. Being outspoken as we were, many families across the country contacted us and begged us to continue. I have had grown men – strangers – crying on the phone.
A nephew of my husband told me last year that it was over his dead body that he would want his kids raised on our reservation. He asked me to keep going. A niece told me two weeks ago the same thing. She was abused by relatives growing up – and does not want the same thing to happen to her children. She wants ICWA abolished.
It is so – so untrue that only adoptive parents are trying to stop ICWA – or even that only non-tribal relatives want it abolished. Many tribal members hate it. Those same tribal members probably won’t say it openly to people who are strongly pro-tribal government, though.
75% of tribal members, according to the last two U.S. census’ do NOT live in Indian Country. Some have moved away but still like tribal government. However, many others, just like my husband, have left Indian Country because they know their reservation is too dangerous and/or their tribal government is too corrupt. Spirit Lake is not the only reservation that has a high incidence of sexual and physical abuse. We are hearing this from members of many reservations.
It is absolutely wrong to assume that only adoptive parents care about this. We have heard the pleas and tears of way too many. I will continue the fight for our rights and freedoms – just as my husband did – until the day I die.
It is OUR right to decide what happens with OUR children – not the tribal government’s. The law is unconstitutional, period. It is an affront to our personal, parental rights.
It is going to be taken down.
I would like to take the time to say thank you for writing a beautiful and wonderful article as you have. Many of the people who disagree with you have no idead what ICWA really is and how it applies to different cases. While I believe the original intent when making this law was meant to bring good to children, it has failed miserably and needs to be revamped.
My mother is from a little farther north @ Red Lake Falls. While the race issue (and yes she is French and NA) was never mentioned growing up, my Mother loves her heritage and embraces as well as embraces her distrust for tribal involvment.
Sorry if this is ranting, but I wanted to say thank you for a well written article. PS, I was up for a family reunion at Cass Lake a couple years ago. Very beautiful place 🙂
Thank you, Sherry. I appreciate your note very much. 🙂
I believe truly God has a plan for Veronica’s life beyond what anyone can know. She is a blessed warrior who has opened the door a little wider towards freeing other children traumatized by ICWA.
I agree so wholeheartedly with your post.
This little girl has gone through a remarkable adoption journey. My fear for her is that it will come to DEFINE her for the rest of her life. In so many ways, it has already changed her- evident in how easily she accepts the media hanging around her, how she knows how to smile and engage with photographers, how readily she accepts those strangers pawing over her and claiming their hugs from her.
I hope she doesn’t grow to see herself and her personal space as other people’s “reward”. I hope I’m making sense here- I’m one of the many who stand strong with the Capobiancos and think about Veronica quite often. It’s just that she has the right to grow up as just another little girl living in Charleston, S.C., not some “Harry Potter” type figure that is central to a political war. It’s time for the Brown supporters and us SVR supporters to back away and let her grow up to find her own identity, separate from all this.
But I will still think of her often, and wish that family well.
Thank you. This is what is on my heart and mind as well.