Monday, April 14, 2008

Polygamy cult custody case

Get ready for the biggest child-custody case in American history:
State officials moved 416 children seized in a raid on a West Texas polygamist compound to a new shelter Monday after some mothers complained to the governor about conditions that were making the children sick. . . .
Earlier on Monday, a court began laying the groundwork to sort out the custody arrangements for the hundreds of children seized from the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Chris of Latter Day Saints, with nearly four dozen lawyers seeking to represent the children in attendance.
State District Judge Barbara Walther held the hearing to prepare for Thursday's expected marathon session, when the state will plea for permanent custody of the children.
Holy crap! The state of Texas wants custody of all 416 children?

As creepy as this FLDS cult is -- and, judging from news accounts, they're nearly as creepy as the Jonestown cult, Heaven's Gate, or even the Manson "Family" -- this action by Texas Children's Protective Services (CPS) is draconian.

My inner cynic suspects that CPS is pushing for total custody of all the children as a way to force the adults either to confess to crimes or to inform about the crimes of others. In other words:
'Fess up and snitch out your friends, or you'll never see your kids again.
In other words, this is the opening gambit of a protracted legal battle. The fact that there were "nearly four dozen lawyers" in the courtroom tells you that these FLDS families are not going to just roll over and play dead in this case.

Hey, it's America. Everyone is entitled to due process of law, everybody gets their day in court -- even creepy cult people who force 13-year-old virgin girls into becoming the teen brides of 50-something "elders."

1 comment: