It seems that part of the reasoning the CPS used to keep the Mormon children was that they witnessed pregnant girls. Unfortunately, of the three that they claimed to have seen, none of them are underage.
When Texas child welfare authorities released statistics showing nearly 60 percent of the teen girls taken from a polygamist sect’s ranch were pregnant or had children, they seemed to prove what was alleged all along: The sect commonly pushed girls into marriage and sex.
But in the past week, the state has twice been forced to admit “girls” who gave birth while in state custody are actually adults. One was 22 and said she showed state officials a Utah birth certificate shortly after she and more than 400 minors were seized from the West Texas ranch in an April raid.
The state has in custody two dozen other young mothers and others whose ages are in dispute. If most of them also turn out to be adults, it would be a severe blow to the state’s claim of widespread sexual abuse.
If it turns out the other 24 disputed minors are adults, the number of actual 14- to 17-year-old girls with children could drop to as low as five or six. That would amount to about one-fifth of the girls that age found at the ranch — substantially higher than the average rate of teen pregnancies in Texas but a far cry from 60 percent. 1
So, where is the evidence? Why are these people being singled out if it turns out that the number of underage pregnancies are the same as that in the general populace. I mean, when I went to high school (circa 1994) there was a girl pregnant in every grade except 8th. That’s 7, 9, 10, 11, 12. And none of these children had husbands and none of them were taken from their parents.
And the audacity that they have to tell the mothers that the only way they can qualify to have their children back is if they are self-supporting. They take women who have been raised to be homemakers and then tell them they have to go out and get a job (without a college education in some cases) or they’ll never see their kids again. It’s just one tragedy after another.
One wonders what will happen in Texas when there’s no case– will the kids ever be the same? Will the CPS admit it was wrong? Will this stop underage marriages?– which I’m definitely for.
Update: CPS has vague standards for the children to return to their parents:
The plans call for parenting classes and vocational testing for the parents. They also require the parents to prove they can support their children and call for safe living environments, though they offer no specifics.
This can’t be right, can it?
CPS has said the goal is to reunify the families by April.
That would mean that these children, as young as infants, could be gone for a whole year? That can’t be right.
2 thoughts on “Yet Another Mormon Update”
Just to make clear, I think this whole case is just one mistake after another.
Onto my point, though, I think when they say the women have to be self-supporting they mean they have to get off welfare. Currently all but the first wives are using the welfare system and other safety nets of the government to support themselves, while the husband contributes nothing. So I don’t believe its so much they have to go out and get a job as they have to find some source of income that’s not the government (the source could probably be a husband with a job and the government wouldn’t complain).
@Loc: I agree with you about the mistakes. It started with assumptions that have proven to be false, and yet it’s so much like human nature not to admit when you’re wrong.
As for the jobs, what you say make sense. I can’t say that I know for a fact either way, but was commenting on what I heard from CBS News radio– it certainly could be more like you say.