Below is a transcript of my radio commentary recorded Friday for the Free Congress Foundation, available for listening and downloading at http://www.fcfnewsondemand.org/.   
 
An archive of my previous commentaries, also available for listening and downloading, can be found by going to http://www.fcfnewsondemand.org/search.asp and searching under my name on the drop-down menu (to get them all , you must search under both "Stephen" and "Steven").   
 
These commentaries are now being carried by the USA Radio Network with some 1200 stations and the Information Radio Network with 400 stations.  If you have local stations that are part of this network, please urge them to pick it up.
 
Stephen Baskerville
 
For more then 30 articles from over 4 years, see my website: http://users.rcn.com/baskerville/
 
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4/4/03
 
Soldiers Risking Their Lives in Iraq Might Face Prison
Over Child Support Upon Return
 
As America's servicemen risk their lives to protect their families and ours,
the federal government is preparing to put them in jail. 

That's right; you heard correctly.  Most societies honor their returning
heroes.  In America we punish them.

Soldiers who ship off to Iraq risk not only their lives but arrest and jail
when they return.  Those who accept a pay cut to defend their country can be
incarcerated when they are unable to pay the impossible child support
burdens imposed on them by the federal government's divorce machinery.

It is mind-boggling that servicemen who risk their lives to protect us will
face arrest as they step off the plane.  Yet this is precisely what happened
after Desert Storm, and it will happen again this time.

The federal government has issued the usual PR smokescreen, urging soldiers
to contact their local child support agents to request a modification.  But
such requests are almost never granted.  Child support fills government
coffers with federal taxpayers' money.  Governments have no incentive to
give these soldiers a break and plenty of incentive not to. 

The Christian Science Monitor reports that a soldier whose domestic job pays
$31,000 must pay $900 a month in child support.  His reserve pay will reduce
his income to $27,000.  The Monitor neglects to point out that even at the
higher pay, this is about half the man's take-home pay, and that he is
likely to be living on less than $1,000 a month.  Another father's child
support comprises 73% of his income, leaving him $200 a month to live on.

Do we really believe that these heroes are "deadbeat dads" who went to Iraq
to avoid paying child support?  If not, perhaps it is time we began to
examine whether the entire child support system is anything other than a
fraud.  If these men are not "deadbeats," then who is?   If these arrests
are an abuse of government power, why are not all the others?

Attempts to protect our civilization from external threats will be pointless
if we allow it to be undermined from within.  How long do we expect men to
sacrifice their lives and livelihoods for their country when their
government steals their children and uses those  children to extort huge
sums of money from their fathers?

What kind of morale can we expect in our armed forces when the same brave
men who risk their lives to protect their families from invasion by
terrorists are powerless to protect their families from invasion by their
own government. 

For FCF News on Demand, this is Stephen Baskerville.