Tuesday, April 29, 2008

More on the FLDS case.

"FLDS teen gives birth to boy as state officials stand by."

I am horrified. The more I hear about this case, the more it disgusts me. The authorities were seemingly upset when this young girl gave birth to her baby, not because she had issues with the birth or was undernourished or shooting drugs, but because someone informed her mother and her mother came to be with her while she labored. Hell's bells, any girl would want her mother with her while she was in labor! Especially so in a close-knit community like that. My gawd.

Worse, FLDS says the girl is 18. CPS says she's under 18. But none of that matters, because the legal age of majority in Texas is **17**. They say they took 463 children from the YFZ Ranch, yet the girls (and at least two of the boys, apparently) claim to be adults. Worse, CPS apparently decided their ages "by eye." We're told the females were lined up and some CPS person pointed and said, "You look under 18, go over there."

Some facts, from Introspection of a Plural Wife (at heart):

There are a total of 463 FLDS children - 250 females, 213 males - in state custody in Texas. Here is a breakdown of that count:
* 0-2: 101, 49 females, 52 males
* 3-5: 99, 46 females, 53 males
* 6-9: 131, 68 females, 63 males
* 10-13: 62, 34 females, 28 males
* 14-17: 42, 27 females, 15 males
* Disputed age: 26 females, now classified as 17 or younger.
* Two boys who turned 18 while in state custody also have voluntarily chosen to stay with younger boys.
Source: Texas Child Protective Services

She points out something that was itching in the back of my brain: the fact that a few days ago, CPS was unable to give any accurate information because there were so many children involved. They hadn't figured out all the names, ages, or who was pregnant and who wasn't. Now, suddenly, they know EXACTLY how many pregnant women there are? We're told in other CPS reports given to newspeople, that there are 31 pregnant women (or perhaps 30, after this one just gave birth) under 18, and 53 females between the ages of 14 and 18.

These facts are odd, though. Since the age of consent is 17, and girls with family permission can marry at 16, why should we be counting females who are 17? Why should we be counting girls who are 16 and married? Other statistics given by reporting agencies claim there are only 4 girls pregnant, and only one of those under the age of 16, and she wasn't married and had run off and "done the nasty" with her boyfriend (gee, THAT never happens outside of the ranch, right?) without parental permission.

There is a lot of lying going on. I'm sure some of it is from the ranch, and I'd like to see any and all cases of abuse prosecuted and punished. However, there are MANY charges that should be faced by the Texas authorities. What they have done in this sweeping raid is disgusting! It should never have been allowed to happen.

And as one commenter said in an article that I read today, there are thousands of Baptist teen girls pregnant, in and out of wedlock, in America... what do you think would happen if CPS raided THEM? What about the "child labor" claims, about how awful it is to make their children work their farm land? Should we now raid the Amish, who do the same thing?

If abuse is present (and in a community that size, I'd be surprised if there wasn't any), then bring forth charges and let us all see. That's the law. Let those accused of abuse see their accusers, and have their day in court. At this point, they'd likely be fried by any jury, so whatever.

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