Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My thoughts on the FLDS fiasco in Texas

Personally, I think it was a big mistake for Texas officials to go in and remove all of the children from the FLDS compound based on such sketchy evidence. It sets a very dangerous precedent.

Yes, there is evidence suggesting that some questionable things have been going in inside the walls of the FLDS compound - and we should do further investigation; but, are the children really better off being ripped from their families and thrown into the foster care system?

There have been news stories about how the FLDS church tosses boys out on the street once they turn 18 (so as to reduce the number of men); but, the foster care system does the same thing - to both boys and girls.

An editorial in our local Newspaper pointed out that if 5 of the young girls are pregnant (out of 437 children), that's still much better than the rate of underage pregnancies in the county surrounding the FLDS compound.

They speak of 'evidence' - yet there have not been any arrests directly related to the alleged charges. And, if this 'evidence' is so compelling, why aren't they removing the children from other FLDS compounds in Utah and Arizona?

What's next? Are we going to start removing Amish children? Home schooled children? Any children in a situation which we personally find oppressive and/or repulsive without giving any thought to if we are really helping the children in the long run?

Just my $0.02

UPDATE: Here are the results of the FLDS poll


Foxx said...

While I remain, for now, on the fence in this issue, There is one argument I find understandable. From a legal perspective, regardless of the abuse issues, which may or may not be institutionally encouraged, the FLDS group are a band of criminals. Criminals in that they are breaking the law. The law prohibiting polygamy. Is it better to keep the children in a situation where they will more than likely become outlaws themselves, or to give them another chance to choose?

On the other hand, where I had always understood and accepted polygamy as a faithful LDS member, I realize that I'm in a position now where I would hope that the government would legalize my choice for an alternative family.

I really don't know what's going on with the whole thing, or who is right and who is wrong, but all in all I think that, for those involved, more good will come of this than evil.

MohoInTx said...

When I read that those kids are being spread out all across TX, I was outraged.

It's simply ridiculous, and I feel for those mothers and even fathers of those kids.

This is obviously a tight knit group, and to seperate these families is just heart wrenching.

What a mess. And on top of that, they think they found the girl who made the call... and guess what. She has no connection with the FLDS religion, and is a 33 year old black lady that lives somewhere in Colorado.

Most people here in San Angelo are way upset with what is going with these kids.

Anonymous said...

I thought I should put it out there: Legally, they are not committing polygamy since the men only have one "legal" wife if any. Last time I heard, it wasn't illegal to cheat on your wife, even if it means bringing the new woman into the home.

I think that's how polygamous societies get around the legalities involved there.

The issues of child abuse and under age "marriage" is an entirely different legal mess.

Personally I think that the government in Texas has taken some very hasty decisions without (it seems) fully investigating the situation.

Anonymous said...

every society needs a scapegoat. so easy to pick on these women and their children. focus on this and ignore the war, the recession and ever present racism.

Molly Sue said...

Being a home schooling mother, I REEEAAALLY hope it doesn't turn into a witch hunt against any and all who appear to be "different" from the "social norm". I home school, I don't abuse my children...and, I only hang out with religious radicals and eat paste on infrequent occasion...haha, that was a little sarcasm

Molly Sue said...

Oh, and another thought, don't even get me started on the breasfeeding mothers, I'm an over educated lactation consultant too. I can't tell you the number of press interviews I've done on that subject....

Silver said...

Abelard and Molly,

I'm also really troubled by the trend this may set and the sweeping generalizations that people may draw from their observations of this.

I think Texas has stepped into a quagmire with this mess and has generally suspended the rights of the FLDS. There will be a lot of trauma, discontent and conflict come out of this and a lot of damaged little hearts and minds.

I have to respect the Attorney General of Utah; Mark Shurtleff, who has shown great wisdom and restraint in how he deals with the FLDS is UTah. They have carefully and surgically gone after offenders, most notably Warren Jeffs. They took out the main root and initiated a gradual and significant change in the community without the shock that has occured in Texas and the invasion of personal rights. The love and respect shown by Shurtleff for the FLDS community has built a bridge of trust and respect that has born fruit and lead to conviction of offenders in orderly fashion. A little patience can lead a long way.

As for Congressman Harry Reed of Nevada who has critisized Shurtleff recently in the press...What a flaming hypocrit!! I'd put his charachter against Shurtleff on any day and come away the winner.

I really have a lot of empathy and pity for the FLDS in Texas and Utah who have been disrupted and ripped from their homes. If it can happen to them, who is next? I'm sure that all of those folks are not offenders or at risk. Who is to judge what is a healthy lifestyle. Where there is specific evidence, of course they should take action but, a sweeping raid like this is inexcusable.

Any time personal freedoms are walked on like this, we should all be concerned.