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“When The Welfare People Come” – The Broken Child Welfare System in America

Black and white photo of Malcolm X

Malcolm X was a foster child right here in Lansing, Michigan!

The issue of CPS’s unethical approach to parenting oversight, and the long history they have with dividing families, has been a subject of heated debate for many years. And yet for many people who’ve never personally encountered CPS, they have no idea that the issue is even an issue – can you imagine that!?

Despite the number of people who don’t realize how vastly flawed the system is, there are many books available addressing this subject in detail, and a surprising number of famous people who spent time in foster care. One book that has received a lot of attention, was written by child welfare lawyer Don Lash, and quotes the experience of controversial human rights activist Malcolm X, who was raised right here in Lansing, Michigan.

Was Malcolm X in foster care here in Michigan?

Malcolm X (who was born Malcolm Little on May 19, 1925, in Omaha, Nebraska) moved to Lansing Michigan with his family when he was still very young. When he was only six years old, his father was killed in what was labelled as a car crash at the time, but was widely suspected to be the work of the Black Legion – a white supremacist group that had made repeated threats against the family.

When Malcolm was 13-years-old, his mother had a nervous breakdown and was committed to the Kalamazoo Psychiatric Hospital. He and his siblings were split up and placed in foster homes. Malcolm spent time in a series of foster homes, and was later charged with larceny at age 20 and sent to prison where he adopted the moniker ‘Malcolm X.’

What does Malcolm X have to say about the foster system?

Don Lash’s book “When the Welfare People Come” addresses “the history and politics of the US child welfare system, exposing the system in its totality, from child protective investigation to foster care and mandated services, arguing that it constitutes a mechanism of control exerted over poor and working class parents and children.”

Malcolm X, when reflecting on his time in foster care and speaking to his experience as a foster child, called it “legal, modern slavery, however kindly intentioned.” It sounds extreme, but in his perspective, children of color and children who grow up in poor families (who are often one and the same) are targeted by CPS, which is why there is a disproportionate number of children of color and poor children in foster care.

Whatever your perspective are on the issues of race and class…

Whether you agree with Lash’s take on the corruption of the system, or agree with Malcolm X on the racial issues involved, what is indisputable is the fact that too many children are taken from their parents, both here in Michigan and in the U.S. as a whole. Too many families are broken up, and too many children are placed into foster homes. It’s an enormous emotional burden on those children and their parents, and the financial repercussions for the state are staggering!

And what can we do about it? Fight back. If CPS shows up at your door, contact the skilled and experienced CPS defense attorneys and make sure you’ve got the best of the best on your side. Don’t take this lying down. Stand up and fight! You don’t have to let a corrupt system win. You have rights, and we can help protect them. Call us at 866 766 5245 today, and talk to someone who understands what you’re up against, and has won many, many times against CPS before!

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