Simple Bounty

Finding Beauty, Grace and Sanity in a Busy World

More On FLDS Kidnapping May 22, 2008

Filed under: Current Events — katieosborne @ 7:21 pm
Tags: , ,

The appeals court has ruled that the State acted improperly by taking the FLDS children and placing them in the foster care system. It’s unclear when the children will be returned to their families, and the State plans to appeal the decision. But hopefully the families will be reunited soon, and they can begin healing.

As a side note, I came across this article today regarding the State’s order to have the children immunized. (The community is largely unvaccinated). As a parent of an unvaccinated child, I am completely infuriated that the government has the ability to make such a decision. They truly do believe our children belong to them.

  Crimmins said the state requires all children in custody to be immunized for their “health and safety.” He said no one would be forced to get inoculations; older children specifically would have the opportunity to decline the shots.

I don’t quite understand how it can be a requirement, yet they say the children can reject them. If this is true, unfortunately it won’t help the youngest children, those at greatest risk for being negatively affected by the shots, since they’re not able to make that kind of decision. In fact, it is absolutely ridiculous to allow children to make such a decision at all. That is the job of the parents who hopefully have educated themselves on the benefits and risks of vaccinations.

Since most haven’t had any, I wonder how many shots they plan to pump them full of at once to make up for lost time.

What a disaster. This whole thing. At least the children will hopefully be returned soon.

 

The State’s Inhumane Treatment of Women And Children May 16, 2008

Filed under: Current Events — katieosborne @ 10:18 pm
Tags: ,

 I don’t think there is a day that goes by that I don’t think about the nightmare the state of Texas brought on the FLDS mothers and children. It makes me so ashamed of what this country has become, and I feel so much grief and anger for what these people are going through.

How the state feels justified in causing irreparable emotional and psychological damage to these innocent children and their mothers because of a false claim of sexual abuse from a woman who was not, and has never been, a member of the community is simply mind boggling.  I keep expecting someone to step in and finally say, “this has all been a terrible mistake. We apologize profusely for the terror and trauma we’ve caused. Your children will be returned to you immediately, and you are all free to return home.” But that is not going to happen.

I just feel like something must be done. There must be some way to help…some way to take a stand for these people who are being persecuted because of their unpopular beliefs. But I have no idea what I can do.

Reading the accounts of many of the mental health workers involved, reinforces the disbelief I feel over the situation. The accounts can be found here in their entirety. Below are some excerpts.

 

image

image

image

 

 

image

 

 

image

image

image

 

 

image

 

image

 

 

image

  image

 

 

 image

 

 

image

 

 

image

image

image

 

FLDS Ranch Raid April 25, 2008

Filed under: Current Events — katieosborne @ 12:40 pm
Tags: ,

I have been very troubled by this story since it broke a few weeks ago, and I can’t stop thinking about it. Thinking about all those mothers and children separated from each other with no just cause grieves me. I cannot imagine what they are going through, and trying to imagine makes me cry.

The judge will not even allow nursing mothers to remain in state custody with their babies. She rationalizes, “every day in this country, we have mothers who go back to work after six weeks of maternity leave.” How women, who have the option of pumping during the day and nursing at night, voluntarily returning to work, is in any way comparable to women who’s children were kidnapped from them is completely beyond me.

[I began writing this post on the 23rd. As of the 24th, it is reported that the judge has had a change of heart and is allowing mothers of nursing children under 12 months to remain with their babies. A small bright spot in this nightmare.]

The fact that the state is so blatantly denying these people due process based on some very flimsy “evidence” is maddening. The call was fabricated by a woman in Colorado. There is no Sarah, but the state doesn’t care; they’ve been dying for an excuse to get inside for years. Even if Sarah existed, the state should have located her and removed her to safety while her allegations against her husband were investigated. They had absolutely no right to take those children away from their families.

The government asserts that the children are all in danger of child abuse and must be removed from their homes. Nevermind the fact that there is no reason to believe any of them have been harmed. The government has no right to remove the children simply because they might possibly be abused in some way in the future, yet that seems to be the rationale. From what I understand, beyond the Sarah issue, the possible abuse within the community centers around the fact that some girls are married at an age younger than permitted by the government, and their husbands are therefore guilty of statutory rape. And there are also allegations from a few women of their husbands forcing themselves on them. A crime to be sure, but not one that has anything to do with the safety of these 437 children who have been ripped from their mothers’ arms.

Apparently we are all entitled to our constitutional rights as long as we don’t belong to a group that is identified as fringe, however the government chooses to define it. Is it just a matter of time before the rights of conservative Christian home schooling families are threatened in a similar manner? So many people, Christians included, maybe Christians especially, are applauding the state’s “rescue” of these children. They don’t care that the families are being denied their constitutional rights. The FLDS’ beliefs and practices are unpalatable to them, so people rationalize the situation and say that the state did the right thing. They don’t seem to comprehend the fact that they could be targeted next. It’s all okay when it’s some group of weirdos being persecuted, but what happens when you’re seen as the weirdo? Either the government abides by the law for all citizens, or we are all in danger of having our rights trampled.

I am not defending the group’s beliefs. I do not agree with many of their practices, and I don’t understand everything that has taken place within the community. What I am defending is their right to due process. These people have already been deemed guilty by the government, the media and much of society despite lack of proof. That is wrong.

The state acts as though they have performed a noble deed by kidnapping and terrorizing these children. They say they are only interested in their safety, as they shuttle them off to foster homes across the state, homes that are known for abuse including poisoning, rape and death. Yes, I’m certain those FLDS children will be much safer in such environments as they become exposed to all the best our immoral society has to offer, instead of safe in the protective arms of their mother’s where they live simple and productive lives.

I am not trying to paint an idyllic picture of life in this community. From what I know of him, Warren Jeffs abused his power as leader of the group, and I’m sure there are FLDS men who are on power trips, but I bet there are also good men who love and protect their families. I don’t know how young brides feel about their marriages. Many of them defend their way of life, though it’s hard to say whether it is out of truth or fear. I am aware of stories from ex-members like Carolyn Jessop, but there are also many members and former members who speak positively of their experience within the FLDS church and defend their way of life.

I guess the point is, ultimately, these things don’t matter when it comes to the question of whether these children should have been forced from their families. Maybe there are many young women who are oppressed and even abused by the FLDS men and who wish for a different life. I have no idea. But that is a different issue, and this is not the way to reach them. Acts of aggression like this, stealing children, only serve to further isolate and aggravate.

These children are going to be irreparably damaged by the government’s actions. They’ve grown up in an extremely conservative environment with little exposure to our popular culture. It would be near impossible for any child forced from the safety of her home to adjust to life without her mother, life with a foreign family, wondering when she’ll get to go home. How much more difficult for these children. I can’t believe for a moment that the government really believes they are protecting these children. I don’t think they care.