Some Inconvenient Facts to Consider before You Apply for a Restraining Order

Posted on December 21, 2015


chirp_chirpRestraining orders are urgently encouraged by many, including the police. They reward impulse and can be procured in moments. Everyone may goad you to act, including friends and family, which can exert a coercive influence on your decision. This is what they don’t know and you won’t be told.

  1. Application for a restraining order may cost you nothing, but that doesn’t mean it’s free; the taxpayer foots the bill (which by some estimates may run from $1,000 to $2,000).
  2. Accordingly, “your” restraining order is not yours; it’s the public’s, bought and paid for.
  3. The court, the district prosecutor, and the police represent the public interest; the restraining order is theirs. You are just the complainant, and your control ends there.
  4. The court may allow you to recant your allegations and vacate the order if you reconsider, or it may not, and the system will act on those allegations regardless of whether you want it to; you have nothing to say about it. You can whine, wheedle, and beg, and it won’t matter; process is blind and deaf, and you have made the accused vulnerable to incarceration by placing a target on his or her back.
  5. Once you introduce an allegation publicly, it becomes a permanent public record.
  6. That record may be aired publicly by anyone anywhere and anytime in accordance with the First Amendment. That includes in a blog, on YouTube, or in a newspaper.
  7. To accuse someone is to make it a criminal offense for that person to communicate with you. You have no power to “allow” exceptions to what a court orders. You concede your adult right to exercise personal discretion when you petition the court to assume a parental role in your life.
  8. To accuse someone publicly is furthermore to make him or her subject to warrantless arrest, subject to automatic enrollment in public (including police) databases, and consequently subject to prohibition from certain forms of employment and denial of the benefits that would otherwise accompany that employment (traces of the record do not dissipate; they’re permanent).
  9. Since this will likely be objectionable to the accused, it can set in motion a cycle of reciprocal accusation and prosecution besides create enduring strife in families and social circles. Legal action cements a lasting distrust and enmity, and makes it impossible (because illegal) for anyone to talk things out and reach a detente.

Copyright © 2015

*A restraining order is not “just a restraining order.” The point of restraining orders was to cull and identify violent abusers, and the imperative promoted by feminist proponents of “women’s law” is to make that label permanent and punitive.