April 16, 2024

You Had No Right

Missing Mom So says an appeals court:

An appeals court has ruled that Texas had no right to seize hundreds of children from polygamous sect.

What’s more odious is that it is now reported that half the “mothers” that CPS moved to foster care have now been declared adults:

Attorneys for Child Protective Services say 15 of the 31 mothers are adults. One is actually 27.

Another girl listed as an underage mother is 14, but the state has conceded she is not pregnant and does not have a child.

So, how long have they been away from their parents?  Unjustly?  I’m grateful that the court is finally stepping in here and declaring this to be overreach, and I’m waiting to see what they’ll do next.

Again, what’s scary about this is that these CPS agents took away 460 children based on their religion or location, and under false information– and if it can happen to someone else…

Update: Yahoo news reports:

The Third Court of Appeals in Austin ruled that the state offered “legally and factually insufficient” grounds for the “extreme” measure of removing all children from the ranch, from babies to teenagers.

The state never provided evidence that the children were in any immediate danger, the only grounds in Texas law for taking children from their parents without court approval, the appeals court said.

The state never provided evidence that teenage girls were being sexually abused, and never alleged any sexual or physical abuse against the other children, the court said.

“The existence of the FLDS belief system as described by the department’s witnesses, by itself, does not put children of FLDS parents in physical danger,” the court said in its ruling, overturning the order to keep the children by state District Judge Barbara Walther, a former family law attorney.

The appeals court also said the state was wrong to consider the entire ranch as an individual household and that any abuse claims could apply only to individual households.

Walther has 10 days to comply with the appeals court ruling.

So, it looks like justice may prevail in this case after all…

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4 thoughts on “You Had No Right

  1. Min, I find your support for these families baffling to say the least. I know that you’re not the least bit supportive of gays and lesbians adopting children or conceiving through artificial means as their lifestyle is “immoral, sinful, and unhealthy.” But isn’t the polygamist lifestyle also immoral, sinful, and unhealthy???

    With all the talk of marriage supposedly being between ONE man and ONE woman, I thought you’d be the first one praising the government for removing these children from the sinful polygamists.

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  2. @Musicguy: I do try to be as consistent as I can, and to be as transparent as I can. I believe that all sex outside of a heterosexual marriage relationship to be sin. Yes, polygamy falls inside that real, as does homosexuality and those that are engaging in premarital sex.

    What I am not saying is what the punishment for these things should be if any. I believe that if you’ll look around, though I’ve spent a lot of words talking about why I believe that polygamy is sin, homosexuality is wrong, and people should wait until their married to have sex, I don’t think you’ll find me saying that those that cohabitate should lose their children, that homosexuals should be locked in insane asylums or that polygamists should be jailed.

    I am making two moral judgments when it comes to the Mormons: Polygamy is a sin and the Government overreached. Just as the court ruled, it was wrong to consider the group simply because of physical location and same religion– it should have been by family. That doesn’t change my opinion on polygamy.

    Does that make sense? That’s part of the reason that I call it overreach. It’s not that I don’t believe that there shouldn’t have been something done, it’s that I believe the wrong thing was done, and continues to be done, and that this branch of the government has too much power and too little oversight.

  3. so how should the government deal with these immoral polygamists? Obviously, the goverment shouldn’t be condoning or tolerating this sinful lifestyle (hmm where have I heard that before??) How can we “save the children” and get them into a “traditional” two parent home (comprised, of course, of one man and one woman)?

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  4. @Musicguy: I guess it depends on whether the government should be lifestyle enforcers or not. According to the law, if a man is engaged in sexual relations with a woman under the appropriate age, then he should be punished according to the law.

    Polygamy is a stickier issue. No doubt, none of these pairings (or perhaps one) is actually a “legal” marriage. The rest may have bonded with commitment ceremonies, but not official marriages– because that too would have been prosecuted under the law.

    If we were to begin, as you suggest, and “save the children” by taking them out of the polygamist homes by virtue of the fact that they have, what, too many parents? A bad style of relationship? Then in order to be consistent we’d also have to take away not only the children of non-married homosexual couples, but also all of those single mothers that were either living with boyfriends, living by themselves, or living with another family.

    That would be wrong, in my opinion.

    To me, a child belongs to their parents– not in the way a cat or a dog belongs to a person, but they belong as in being a part of, coming from, their parents. That bond is something that shouldn’t be violated without some really good reason– i.e. physical or sexual abuse (and I could be persuaded to throw in here mental abuse, but that’s harder to define).

    So, I wouldn’t take away the children from the polygamists and the cohabitating parents or the single mom. Homosexual parents are trickier– though the homosexual mom that birthed the child is the mom, and I’d support her keeping her child.

    I would also support the unpopular opinion that the dad should be allowed to be in his kids life– in the single mom’s case.

    Yes, I do believe a house with a two-parent heterosexual family is the best environment to raise stable children. But no, I don’t believe in taking away kids from their parents to place them into the “ideal situation” simply because they are in one that is less than ideal.

    And to try to answer your question in a slightly different way, the way to change the hearts of the “immoral polygamists” as well as those that are living in a sinful lifestyle is through prayer, through God and a change of heart. We can try our best to tell these polygamists that they’re wrong. We can try to force them to behave in a certain way using their kids for blackmail (what the Texas CPS is now doing). But none of these will have any lasting impact unless their heart is changed first.

    True repentance (change) comes from the inside out. But that’s another post for another time.

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