Fallout from FLDS raid is intense

Texas authorities defend removal of 416 children

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  • Ted kalomiris
    Sept. 21, 2008 2:00 a.m.

    I think that enforcing the law in cases of marijuana usage can be used as an analogy to this. Smoking pot doesn't really do much harm to the user, however it makes them maladjusted to the norms of society at large, and if "counter-cultural" activities are too disruptive to the workforce rather than complimentary to it then it is stamped out. I think that it is possible that a large number of the people from thiese environments where different customs are practiced will have problems in the mainstream because their values are so different. And yes, technically they are breaking laws if underage sex is practiced, etc. Bad environment for kids- illegal too, and because they are all situated in the same place, it is just crying out to be busted by the F.B.I. Every other Western nation would do the same thing, whether somewhat hypocritical or not (compared to the possible percentage of unprosecuted child abuse cases that may exist elsewhere).

  • Field
    May 31, 2008 7:28 p.m.

    It is important that if a person or a governing body of people set themselves in the place of judgment, that they have things in control in their own territory.

    #1. ) In the public Schools system a 13 year old become pregnant every 3 hours. a 14 year old becomes pregnant every 2 hours. a 15 year old every hour, and a 16 year old every 30 min. by their own statistics.

    #2. ) Then the innocent unborn babies are murdered !

    No one has closed these public schools down, no one has closed these abortion clinic's down, that is called "choice", instead of a live baby!

    Thus the unreasonable tyranical terroristic actions of the STATE rages on , even after the Supreme court has order the action "illigal" unlawful and with out cause, they continue to threaten , to villify, to intimidate, and to oppress the religous communities accross America!

  • AlmostFunny
    May 21, 2008 8:48 p.m.

    Top Ten Signs You Are A Victim of Religious Persecution

    10. When people talk about where THEY live it is a four-plex, apartment building or ranch. When they talk about the four-plex, apartment or ranch YOU live at, it is a compound.
    9. Your religion is constantly referred to as a cult.
    8. The state decides how your children are to worship by taking away their religious documents and scriptures.
    7. When you move to a state, laws are changed specifically to target your religion.
    6. The only adults in your state NOT allowed to marry a 14 or 16 year olds are the members of your congregation.
    5. Your religion cannot teach certain behaviors lead to damnation, but all other religions can.
    4. The state accepts birth certificates as proof of age for everyone except those practicing your religion.
    3. You can't have your children back unless you denounce your religion, and take classes learning how to think like them.
    2. You have to prove to the State you can raise children, when you have been raising them just fine.
    1. The children of your religion are hauled away in buses displaying the name of another church.

  • Field
    May 12, 2008 3:41 p.m.

    It was all there was to it, they the masters and we the slaves, it really wouldn't be to bad.

    But unfortunately, They do not just want to be the Masters! Ever hear of Abuse.

    The Government has been holloering "Abusive parents" for the last 40 years trying to take control of the families, destroying relationships between Fathers and their children and their Mothers. In the Name of Abuse! And now by the meaning of our fore Fathers, we have an "abusive" tyranical Government, that calls anyone in disagreement of them , insurgents, and terrorists, When in fact, our government is a Terror to "good works"!

    Our Fore Fathers, Said in the Constitution, that it was "unreasonable search and seizure" to go into someone home without an Oath or Affirmation describing in particular the place to be search and the persons to be seized, and our government now is that "unreasonable" tyranical, terrorizing its people!

    Slaves? I don't think so! We have been Victimized by tyranny!


  • Jewell
    May 12, 2008 2:37 p.m.

    When are the American People going to wake up and realize our goverment has becomoe the master and we the slave of it? So, yes, they the goverment knows best in ALL things. Trust it, hate it, love it, worship it...but we have lost our freedom in our pursuit of being rich and being happy at whatever cost. We want peace at whatever cost...so we have let the devils loose to rade, to destroy, and to kill who ever stands in its path in the name of "helping the innocent". An our goverment supports abortion. They're concerned about the innocent? I don't think so. I am so sorry to hear about Texas' Mothers and their great trial of loosing their children to Social services( a mother's worst nightmare ). Shame on Texas! Shame on CPS!!

  • Field
    May 11, 2008 5:33 a.m.

    Every Person, whether they are an Authority in a position of Law enforcement or just a judge, have laws that they must follow in the execution of their duties. And when the People in law enforcment cross the line of disobeying these laws of encounter, they become unreasonable criminals and tyrants, i.e. Terrorists, terrorizing the people they have been chosen to protect and provide a secure and peacable place a habitation for.

    Any attempt to Oppress, Threaten or Intimidate the free exercise and enjoyment of any right guaranteed by the constitution and "these" suppreme laws of the United States of America is a FELONY, a punnishable by a fine of up to $10,000.00 and up to 10 years imprisonment, or both , for each violation, under the criminal code, TITle 18 S241, 242. Oppression of Constitutional rights may also be prosecuted as a civil Action, Under Title 42, S1983,1985 and 1986. Agents of the Government are liable, in an individual capacity for any such violatations.

    These Agents in Texas have broken these Criminal and Civil Law , and that makes them , Criminals, compounded Because they are representing the Law and should know better!


  • Earnest Hiles
    May 10, 2008 12:28 p.m.

    I agree with you totally Isaiah, and appreciate your comments. The Constitution as you know though has been ignored for a long time now.

    But yes, that raid was totally illigal according to the liberties that were supposedly guaranteed by the Constitution and the Ammendments of the United States of America.

    Why do we not have these liberties now?. And why is the law so flagrantly ignoring the Rules of these guaranteed liberties written in the Supreme Law of the land , if all judges and representitives of our judiciary been sworn in to uphold them?

    With out these guraranteed liberties of property and happiness, that the constitution affirmed how can anyone be secure in america?

    Good Job Isaiah, Keep up the good work of exposing the unlawful actions of the Texas Authorities!


  • Baldwin
    April 28, 2008 5:42 a.m.

    Balance people, balance.

    Yes the government has some VERY limited role in offering an escape route to those being coerced and intimidated. Before this is all over some method for government monitoring of religion that both prevents the 'blood atonement' murder of apostates to 'save thir soul', intimidation of anyone who wants to leave, militarizing the 'compound', none of which but the middle example has been proven to me but they need monitoring.

    But yes there needs to be due process that is more than just CPS lip service. The government has been writing laws to selectivly prosecute one religion. The CPS needs to be transparent and exposed. There appears to be a Nazi style war against religion moving from least popular religion on up the chain at least in Texas if not the whole globalist enterprise. Shades of Martin Niemoeller's poem "First they came for..."

    What has this non-mormon amazed is how intimidated mormons are by this. Standing back while someone else's rights are stripped doesn't work. Those are your rights being stripped and they will come for all the chilren who believe.

  • Freedom first
    April 26, 2008 9:10 a.m.

    Right On Texas! You are right and you got the moral strength to call a spade a spade. What is wrong with this entire stiuation is that only the men have the freedon of choice. The women are property and the children are less than property. The world watches don't back down!

  • will marshall
    April 25, 2008 8:52 a.m.

    I have the right to define, create and establish my family as I see fit with consenting adults. I respect no government or church that tells me different.

  • To: Contrarian
    April 21, 2008 6:40 a.m.

    I think my theory (if in fact, true) supports the CPS's premise of child abuse. They had an "insider" in the ranch for 4 years, the kids were (if we believe the reports) ambiguous about who their parents were, and the parents were giving evasive answers about who their children were. There were current underage pregnancies (4 I think), and there was evidence of approximately 20 women total with children who would have had to have had their children when minors. The statute of limitations isn't up on these cases - so you are correct, that they are going after the child abuse. However, why DNA test ALL of the children and parents? My guess is that some of the youngest children are products of marriages at the ranch, and some of the older children are from Hilldale, Colorado City and Calgary. and have been assigned to the "faithful". It just makes logical sense that Texas CPS has an ace up their sleeve and the judge probably knows it. If this theory is correct, DNA testing will open up a huge can of worms, and this will become a much bigger story involving Utah, Arizona and Calgary. Steve in Texas

  • Joyce
    April 20, 2008 11:08 p.m.

    Would the animal pound or what ever it is in Texas, be willing to donate some dogs or cats to the kids to play with?
    All kids love animals and I don't see where any of these have had one.
    You know the men would not allow animals since they can't eat them, and you can't buy dog food with food stamps.
    Besides that the kids don't even have any toys to play with at the compound. Aren't they allowed to play either.
    Cruel people.

  • Contrarian
    April 20, 2008 10:14 p.m.

    To the one who has a "theory": The CPS went to court with allegations of child abuse. How does your theory support the allegations? Even if it were true that the women raising some of the children are not their natural mothers, since when is it child abuse to raise someone else's child?

    To prove abuse the CPS needs to show that underage girls were forced to have sex with older men. If they cannot get complaints from the girls or their mothers then they hope to prove statutory rape by showing that underage girls were impregnated by older men - that is why they are interested in the DNA. Just because Angie Voss claims she saw underage girls who were pregnant is not sufficient proof of child abuse.

    Once again, I have to say that the CPS is targeting the FLDS while ignoring the MEN who impregnated hundreds of Texas girls under the age of fifteen that received abortions last year, and the hundreds of unmarried girls who carried their babies to term. The CPS makes no attempt to monitor these underage pregnancies and abortions to bring the perpetrators of statutory rape to justice.

  • To: Why pick on the FLDS?
    April 20, 2008 9:05 p.m.

    So let me get this straight. You are comparing random teens making bad decisions with mostly other teens. Comparing them to the systematic and institutionalized rape of young girls by the FLDS? The indoctrination of little girls by drilling into them that damnation awaits them if they don't "keep sweet" and obey Uncle Warren the prophet when he preaches to them to NOT try and find a mate on their own? (audio of Uncle Warren available everywhere on the net speaking this very thing) ... just trying to understand you ...

  • Steve in Texas
    April 20, 2008 8:45 p.m.

    You're an Einstein. Keep it up.

  • I have a theory
    April 20, 2008 7:38 p.m.

    I commented earlier under "Steve in Texas", and am very wary of the state's abuse of power. Everything seems like the state rushed in without adequate probable cause to take 416 children. However, after considering this case for days, something doesn't add up... Could it be the state knows something it isn't sharing in the media yet? Is this why they can be so cavalier in their actions? I suspect the number of boys to girls doesn't match anywhere near the 49/51% birthrate in the nation. I suspect - now get this - that Jeffs handpicked the people to go to the ranch, and he took little kids (with a much higher girl ratio) from OTHER families in the Utah/Arizona area and ASSIGNED these kids to these adults to raise. This may why the state is hot on DNA testing. If this is the case, all of my sympathy for the FLDS as victims of state abuse will evaporate instantly. This is the only instance where I can see treating the entire community as one family instead of investigating one allegation at a time. Comments? - Steve in Texas

  • Why pick on the FLDS?
    April 20, 2008 6:40 p.m.

    Hundreds of girls under the age of fifteen get abortions in Texas every year. None of them are married and none of the men who impregnated them are arrested and charged with rape. None of the parents of these Texas girls have their children removed from their homes because the parents are judged to have been neglectful in allowing their young girls to become pregnant.

    Not only abortion, but pregnancy and childbirth, in teenagers outside the FLDS are subsidized by the taxpayers with special programs for underage mothers at high schools, welfare, daycare, and rent subsidy. By the standards applied to the FLDS shouldn't the younger siblings of all pregnant teenagers be removed from the abusive environments that led to underage pregnancy?

  • Joyce
    April 20, 2008 6:20 p.m.

    Slavery was done away with years ago. You don't have to be black to be a slave. These women and children are slaves.

  • caution
    April 20, 2008 6:07 p.m.

    I think we need to withhold judgment until we know the actual facts -- there are a lot of rumors and innuendos flying around on both sides, and we need to take care not to further inflame the situation by spreading and amplifying them. If the abuses are as widespread and institutionalized as they are being characterized in the media, as brutal as the situation is, it will allow for hoped for changes. If things are being exaggerated and sensationalized, then it is hoped judicial process will allow for the truth to out and families to be restored. We need to be sceptical and weed through the sensationalism and emotional appeals from both sides.Prayers for all would not go amiss.

  • Questioning
    April 20, 2008 3:53 p.m.

    For those of you that question the initial call that brought this whole situation to light, here is some information.

    Imagine that a prank caller phones the police and says that she sees a person at a specific address and that she has heard screams and gunshots. The police quickly arrive at the house and respond accordingly. Instead of finding a new event, the police find a body that appears to be dead and murdered but clearly days ago. Do you now believe the police should ignore this information that a crime has been committed simply because the initial phone call was intended as a prank? Of course not. The same applied to this situation. Even if the initial call was a prank, real crimes were found to have occurred and should be acted upon.

  • Filling you in
    April 20, 2008 3:52 p.m.

    Kathleen Jessop is one of Merril Jessop's wives. He is the current Bishop of the FLDS church at the YFZ ranch with those being handpicked by Warren Jeffs as most faithful. She was also the woman that tattled on Caroline Jessop as she was running away. Caroline still managed to escape, though her eldest daughter Betty did return to the FLDS and is living in Colorado city/Hildale. Merrill is allegedly abusive to both his children and his wives with Caroline reporting an incident that suggests babies are not even safe at least in that particular household.
    People also wonder why the mothers do not get the children back, well the answer is simple. The women are not willing to protect their children since girls are married off at puberty (with mothers actually reporting such facts.) They are also willing to abandon sons at age 13 because they have become a source of competition for females since male to female births are near 50/50 which do not allow for polygamy.
    The women are also reporting that ALL the women returned that were able to return, yet we know that 6 women have sought "safe houses" instead.

  • scott
    April 19, 2008 7:56 p.m.

    I agree with what someone else said. The women and children are the obvious victims. The men are the ones who should have been brought into custody.

  • Brian Bach
    April 19, 2008 6:33 p.m.

  • my only concern
    April 19, 2008 2:58 p.m.

    is that if this so called church can follow the guy in JAIL WITH OUT BAIL, commit felonies, live in seclusion,have no missionaries, allow no minorities,have no authority then what gives with all the members sticking up for these guys? Must be some kind of connections.

  • Roxie
    April 19, 2008 2:47 p.m.

    GOD BLESS TEXAS!!! I was born and raised in the FLDS, and escaped - under threats of blood atonement, having endured unimaginable beatings and sexual abuse that started before I was 4 years old. The cell phones were NOT taken illegally from the FLDS women. They were doing everything in their power to hinder the investigation. Witness tampering and acts to hinder an investigation are crimes!!!! Two men were arrested in the compound for interfeering with an investigation. Some of the comments about the Texas raid are way off base. All of the children in the compound needed to be taken away. Most of the boys are kicked out before they ae of legal age, and the remaining become pedophiles - mirroring everything they experienced as a child. The young girls are given as sex slaves to older men - children learn what they live. The adult women were all married underage and see nothing wrong with the sexual exploitation they endured. They send their baby girls like lambs to the slaughter - just like they were. Texas took the steps necessary to protect these children, AS THEY SHOULD HAVE.

  • anonymous2
    April 19, 2008 9:55 a.m.

    Just who is Kathleen Jessop? I have been reading alot about what is going on in El Dorado and have heard her name mentioned several times, but don't know anything about her. Can someone please fill me in?

  • Injuste
    April 19, 2008 5:00 a.m.

    I'm mad that these poor kids are being taken away from their mothers. No child deserves that. If they want to go after the teachings of the church, go after the leaders, not the children. And stuffing 400 more children into the horrible foster care system is going to help no one. The state really needs to start thinking of the kids here. And CPS knows how to do one thing, take kids out of their homes, what happens to these kids afterwards is not their problem. Texas needs to go after the FLDS church, and not the innocent kids.

  • Confused
    April 18, 2008 4:10 a.m.

    I am not privy to the information the State of Texas has so I cannot comment on the raid. However, I would like to reconcile how they believe we are evil and they want nothing to do with us, but they will come out of the compound to immediately apply for my evil money in Public Aid.

  • Abe
    April 17, 2008 4:19 p.m.

    I didn't get see all of the Larry King interview. Did he explain why the men weren't on his show?

  • Bandee
    April 17, 2008 4:08 p.m.

    Uh, isn't this Warren Jeff's FLDS? He's been convicted on testimony from a 14 year old rape victim. His followers have vowed that they will continue to take child brides, and people are outraged at this event?

  • good for texas
    April 17, 2008 3:12 p.m.

    Keep in mind that the "plural marriages" are not real marriages at all. Only one is recorded with the state and the rest are sacramonious. So they may say they practice polygamy, but they really are only married once leaglly. The rest are really just living with the guy and having his kids (which happens everywhere anyway). It's when a 50 yr old has sex with a 16 yr old (or younger) girl that it is just nasty. No 16 yr old wants to be with a 50 yr old - they are pressured into it - and that's a crime (if not legally, then at least morally).

  • Realitycheck60
    April 17, 2008 3:06 p.m.

    I feel so sorry for those children. Maybe now they will be allowed to live a normal life. How sad for all those women, having to live like that, in fear of their "husbands". And in the end, they will realize they wasted their entire life in a little compound and never got to really enjoy life. Good for Texas trying to help these lost souls.

  • To Anonymous
    April 17, 2008 2:28 p.m.

    "and jeff and his perverts just couldn't wait to get their hands on the little girls.. "

    uh, i don't think you get it. There are many here who just don't get that NO MATTER what? .. so we'll see someone talk about pregnant teens in Houston and they'll be coming for your kids next and Texas is Nazi Germany. Just plain weird, some of these folks.

  • Anonymous
    April 17, 2008 1:41 p.m.

    I will say this again! Many of these children in El Dorado were taken from their parents at other compounds by Warren Jeffs or his hit men and given to more worthy men to be raised by their stepford wives. Now what do you think that was all about? He said he wanted only 6yr old or under because they were pure and innocent. Some of these parents might have given them to the king willingly but I will bet that most of them taken because zion was only at El Dorado and jeff and his perverts just couldn't wait to get their hands on the little girls..

  • its_Chet
    April 17, 2008 1:15 p.m.

    Voice of Reason, you live up to your name.

  • Margaret Cooke-ex FLDS
    April 17, 2008 11:34 a.m.

    THIS IS NOT ABOUT POLYGAMY!!This in about child abuse!!I would like to know, is there proof of underage girls being pregnant? Where are the girls that are reportedly pregnant? Being abused has many faces no other home in America would be allowed to have a report of abuse and not be investigated. Any religion would be investigated if the same call had been made. If we use this as opportunity to find how many underage girls are being sexualy abused we are doing the right thing and if we junp to conclusions that Texas is in the wrong we may overlook the help we can give.It is a process and will take a lot of sorting out. I feel for the children that are scared. Living all in one commune made it easier for the state of Texas to do this. Where are the cowardly men that created this and why are then not being interviewed? It is because they are using the women as the face of the FLDS and in reality they are only saying what the men want. Some of these people are my extended family, I want to know the truth.

  • Brennie
    April 17, 2008 11:35 a.m.

    Stop the rape of our innocent children...all the parents who allow their children to be abused in this way should be behind bars...

  • Voice of Reason
    April 17, 2008 11:04 a.m.

    I have been trying to keep an open mind to this whole situation and have a couple things to say.
    It seems to me that spiritual marriage is not necessarily legal marriage. If the men are not legally married to their wives, anyone with a spiritual wife under the age of 18 is guilty of statutory rape. The men who have participated in statutory rape and those who facilitated (possibly the mothers) should be prosecuted.
    Finally, It seems to me that the main concern of many people that have posted is that innocent people will be harmed for the bad deeds of others in their community. I think this is a valid concern and I still believe people are innocent until proven guilty. I think we are all scared that someone will come into our house at take our kids when we haven't done anything wrong. I hope that is not the case here.

  • its_Chet
    April 17, 2008 10:59 a.m.

    I have a question.

    Why is it that two of my rebuttles to the anonymous "tough guy" who wanted to get personal and call me out without provocation did not get posted, yet my post for @mamafirst, which was done later, did get posted?

    What gives?

  • Ummm
    April 17, 2008 10:48 a.m.

    The country began to abandon the Constitution back in 1914, when the government started taxing income and got rich with an amendment that was never legally ratified. The Constitution only allows for the taxation of property (real estate), cuz you can't hide it, lie about it, cheat, or be dishonest. It kept taxpayers honest. Whereas, income tax brought on all kinds of dishonesty and cheating. It made men criminals, and put them in prisons. Since then, the government has gradually been abandoning the Constitution, taking powers to itself that are expressly forbidden, corrupting the laws, abridging personal freedom, and so forth. Don't think the FLDS are going to be saved by the Constitution. It won't help them anymore than it did WACO, because we, as a people, are letting the government get away with abandoning it.

  • The Texan
    April 17, 2008 10:31 a.m.

    An amusing number of people are going to get to heaven to find the gate shut and closed and the guy behind it say, I never knew you.

    The FLDS caused their own problems. Some on here simply add fuel to lack of credibility coming from their quarter.

  • Anonymous
    April 17, 2008 10:24 a.m.

    Raising young girls to be harem slaves is immorally wrong. The authorities should raid every FLDS compound.

  • What Shame on Texas?
    April 17, 2008 9:52 a.m.

    What's with this shame on Texas and calling Texas fascist and unconstitutional? It's one thing to practice religion, but it's quite another when that religion finds it permissable to impregnate 13-16 yr old girls. That is against the law, whether it's a cult or otherwise.

    What Texas did was take children out of a dangerous environment where the teenage girls would be forced to marry men four times their age and begin having children at the age of 13. The boys would be taken away and be brainwashed into thinking this type of lifestyle is ok, and if they disagree with it they'll be beaten.

    I am so sick of all the posters on here blaming Texas for this mess and claiming the state of Texas was out of line. I ask all you who claim that, and if you're not a member of a polygamist sect - how many of you have daughters and how would you like to see those daughters taken away as teenagers and forced to marry 50 yr. old men? How would you like to see those teenage girls have children? I'll venture to guess that not very many of you woould.

  • most comments....
    April 17, 2008 9:46 a.m.

    Nonsense and Bla bla bla!

  • James II
    April 17, 2008 9:06 a.m.

    I notice that we do have quite a few normal Americans on this post who do think that the FLSD Practice is absurd. These evil people need to be put out of the brothel business in the name of God.

  • Kyle
    April 17, 2008 8:39 a.m.

    Warren Jeffs and the FLDS have destroyed more families than the State of Texas ever will.
    Jeffs wins this one hands down.

    1. How many wives and children has he re-assigned from "unworthy" men to "worthy' men?

    2. How many children has he and the FLDS before him, taken away from "unworthy" parents?

    3. How many sons have been ripped from their families, accused of various misdeeds and thrown out into the cold with no life skills of connections in order to reduce competition for women in the community?

    Where were the mothers' tear then?

    Did they come on TV and the DMN looking for sympathy from us? Did they threaten to sue the FLDS?

    The irony.

    Where was all this outrage for the "Lost Boys"?


    Nobody believes you all. Warren Jeffs has done this many times before (not to mention all the "prophets' before him). Give then a year: ALL 400 children will be replaced by then.

  • Fathers
    April 17, 2008 8:25 a.m.

    I've yet to see anyone answer where these FLDS Fathers are and why they aren't stepping up and demanding their children be returned.

    I've seen them running to their vehicles while shielding their faces but as of yet I have not seen one step up and demand his rights to his children be restored.

    The Mothers are very evasive with their answers when it comes to questions that might be construed as criminal evidence or compliance, and that's understandable but why aren't the Fathers doing the same?

  • Havlina
    April 17, 2008 8:13 a.m.

    Sadly, everyone of the woman and children have given up their "basic rights" deferring to a man who is supposed to love them to speak for them and "protect" them but what if he doesn't? Further crimes in the name of Christianity are committed all the time. It's called "sacrafice" unless you're Muslim then it's referred to as "terrorism". The whole religion thing has me frightened. Where have all the "true believers" gone. Does anyone admit to wrong doings, misbehavior, abuse, disrespect, and sinning. I fall short. But, we've felt sorry for "men" or "teachers" far too long. Those who sin need to atone that's it plain and simple.

  • Havlina
    April 17, 2008 8:11 a.m.

    Sadly, everyone of the women and children have given up their "basic rights" deferring to a man who is supposed to love them, speak for them and "protect" them but what if he doesn't? Further crimes in the name of Christianity are committed all the time, and if you're Muslim then it's referred to as "terrorism". The whole religion thing has me frightened. Where have all the "true believers" gone. Does anyone admit to wrong doings, misbehavior, abuse, disrespect, and sinning. We've felt sorry for "men" or "teachers" far too long. Those who sin need to atone that's it plain and simple. ENOUGH! stop protecting the sinners.

  • @ mamafirst
    April 17, 2008 7:43 a.m.

    I am sorry to hear about what you and your siblings went through. I hope time has healed your wounds and you have found enough peace, beauty, and joy in your life to compensate for it ten fold.

    Thank you for shining a light on the fate that awaits these children, lest we assume that once they have been removed from an unfashionable religion against their will that everything will be sunshine and roses.

  • David the Ex-mo
    April 17, 2008 7:06 a.m.

    While I know many of us want to believe so, the reality is that polygamy is not just a mormon thing. There are polygs in every state in the U.S. Some are Muslim, Jewish, Pagan, and yes Christian. Just because you don't know them, doesn't mean they are not out there. Again, they are in every single state.

    This issue is not about polygamy but clear cut abuse of children, even if some polygamists wish to pretend otherwise.

  • DBinPA
    April 17, 2008 7:00 a.m.

    The number one concern as I see it is birth defects from inbreeding. That causes serious problems of major illnesses and death. Kicking the boys out of the compound is moderately serious as the boys have serious abandonment issues. Lesser problems regarding the age differences of partners and the exact proper age of consent can be overcome with FLDS community parenting. The law is not always correct just because it is law. Laws can be arbitrary and frequently need to be challenged. Polygamy has Biblical precedent if kept reasonable. Age of consent has some arbitrariness and could range psychologically from 12-14. In this so called land of the free and home of the brave there are way too many sets of laws, districts, jurisdictions, and circuits. The law sets are unwieldy. There may be a good compromise between the FLDS and the state given the very high publicity of this case. Almost always the state thugs win completely, even when wrong, and way too rarely does the judiciary act as a balance of power against the law to amend onerous or irrational judgments and laws. Appeals courts need to be pressured to be liberty minded and un-political, but very wise.

  • Mike
    April 17, 2008 6:57 a.m.

    Many of you wonder how mothers can be separated from their children. This is why: Mothers tattle on their daughters to church authorities when the girls reach puberty so they can be married off and sometimes married to close family relatives which is proved with Warren Jeffs, their leader and his legal case. Mothers also allow their sons to be kicked out of the compound when they appear to be competition. What 14 year old boy successfully survives that without resorting to prostitution which is effectively the course they are given? When a person wans to escape the cult, they are ratted out by other "sister-wives (just as Kathleen Jessop ratted out Carolyn Jessop.) While they are now crying, where were their tears with the above? It is not about polygamy but abusive crimes against children. The children were pulled, not because of the phone call but because of what the police saw when they got there. My guess? Girls that appear to be too young to have babies but pregnant.

  • Read the Fine Print
    April 17, 2008 6:55 a.m.

    This "religion" should figure out a way to not whore out it's women until they are of legal age.

    They do it this way - marrying them off young - because it is a way of control.

  • David
    April 17, 2008 6:55 a.m.

    Someone asked if these mothers are on welfare. You might want to read about "bleeding the beast." Effectively the first wife marries and all other women are "spiritual wives." The spiritual wives claim they are single women without a father for the children. So, state money is used to support these children. Clearly with 20+ children, no typical man could financially swing it. Unfortunately the wife must give her welfare check up to her husband and from there he redistributes the support to his wives as he sees fit. So favored wives receive more than unfavored wives.
    Also look up "lost boys." Excess boys are kicked off the compound because they are competition for the men.

  • CA
    April 17, 2008 6:24 a.m.

    mamfirst- I'm sorry to hear about your poor experience, and I'm certain things have changed for the better. Read about Dr. Bruce Perry, who is taking charge of the kids.
    Those kids need help and lots of it. The first step to institutionalized abuse is isolation.
    I'm all for grown-ups making their own life decisions, but these kids don't have ANY choices (or protections). Dr Perry talks about kids who were unable to decide if they wanted jelly on their PB&J sandwiches because they were never allowed to make a decision before.
    Even Michael Jackson said he would never "harm" a child....because he didn't consider what he did to be "harmful". He thought of it as "love".

  • Re:wrz 5:11 pm
    April 17, 2008 6:17 a.m.

    wrz you think removing kids that are being sexually abused is much worse than the abuse. I can't believe it is possible for someone to have this opinion. But this mindset explains how a situation like the YFZ ranch occur. I am sure that every man at the ranch thinks just like you.

  • Re:It's all relative
    April 17, 2008 6:01 a.m.

    To: It's all relative 4:23 PM I say WHAT??? You say the State of Texas has no idea what they are doing Because the state did not issue marriage licenses for the underage marriages. This is about Child Abuse and Underage Girls having Babies. These do not require a license they require a sick mind and the evidence is there and can be proven.

  • slap leather
    April 17, 2008 5:13 a.m.

    "Let's mess with Texas!!" said a guy far, far from Texas.

  • mamafirst
    April 17, 2008 1:33 a.m.

    RE: "If Texas is going to err, however, let it be on the side of protecting the kids from abuse."

    You must realize that the foster care system is RIPE with abuses. I was in foster care from age 10 - 14, as were my four siblings. We were moved from home to home, after we were separated, that is. While we had a horrible childhood previous, nothing compared to the physical and sexual abuse heaped upon my siblings in foster care and their subsequent adoptive homes. Yes - social workers came to visit. They spent most of their time visiting with the foster mother. I was asked very few questions, and was NEVER ONCE asked if I was being abused. I was never even ONCE asked about previous abuse from my childhood, so I never got any counselling.

    Some of their visits were just "drive-bys" where they didn't even get out of the car. I had so many different case workers, it seemed as if there was a new one almost every time.

    So, don't think just because these children are placed by CPS that they will be protected from abuse.

  • marjorie newman
    April 17, 2008 1:03 a.m.

    This kind of abuse has been a part of these communities for many decades. This is just the first time that people have stepped in and done something about it.

    In other communities the police are members of the church and usually return the girls who try to escape to the church and they learn not to try and get away.

    This is all done in God's name. Thank God for Texas. By the way ask yourself why they have beds in a temple.

    Think it through.

    Wake up everyone.

  • Astonishing
    April 16, 2008 11:00 p.m.

    "I think it's ironic that many of these children were taken by Warren Jeff from other parents and taken to El Dorado. He built the compound there and handpicked the people to come. He said that these were the chosen people. He also went to all the other coumpounds and handpicked children under 6 yrs old and took them away from their families to be raised by these stepford wives we are now seeing on TV. Do you feel so sorry for the parents whose children were stolen? No wonder the children don't know who they are because they don't know who they are!"
    As this story unfolds (BTW, I've been reading accounts of your discription above), it it going to be beyond interesting (and heartbreaking). Apparently there are so many angles that it's breathtaking in scope. Of course the FLDS folks here and there sympathizers will be repeating the same mind boggling scripts: "How about the teens getting pregant in the Ghetto?" endlessly. This will be no Short Creek ...

  • uncommonly held notions
    April 16, 2008 11:05 p.m.

    "There are some who still think we have horns on our heads, sex on the alters of the temples, or sacrifice virgins in the temples for crying out loud!"

    I kid you NOT, the only people that I have ever heard say any of those things are MORMONS!!! And always in the very context that you used it...assuming the mantle of victimhood. I have never known anyone that believed such ridiculous comments, but I always hear Mormons talking about them as if they were common yet seldom discussed issues. There was even an article in the San-Ho-Ho state Spartans daily that said the very same thing!

    We don't think any of that, just in case you actually believe that we do. It's the things that we disagree about that concern us, and they are very real indeed.

  • Mr. Chet
    April 16, 2008 10:58 p.m.

    You can talk to me about human rights as soon as you stop defending parent's "rights" to have their children raped and abused in the name of religion.

  • Ironic Indeed
    April 16, 2008 10:52 p.m.

    "Perhaps the Texas CPS should consider invading other nations if they feel so concerned about "protecting the interests of children"."

    You'd be the first person wringing your hands about it and complaining if we actually did invade other nations to protect children.

    "Or maybe the FLDS should emigrate in masse since the state of Texas has a long history of intolerance toward faiths who teach things opposed to what traditional mainstream christianity teaches."

    Now that's a pretty good idea. The Lord didn't tolerate them much either.

  • pedophiles be gone
    April 16, 2008 10:49 p.m.

    Go Texas Go! It's time to shut this sickness down. At the very least, perhaps this will cause some of them to stay in other states.

    Texas is a fine place to live, so long as you obey the laws. It really isn't that difficult.

  • Art Jones
    April 16, 2008 10:49 p.m.

    Who knows a procedure to place an injunction on Texas CPS for its illegal action? C'mon someone, lets get it underway. Talk will not save the next innocent target.
    Remove these people from office immediately. Who is present to monitor these criminals with a badge?
    Do you hear the comments of the spokeswoman for CPS stating a case even before taking any evidence at all?

    If you feel it, file it.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 10:36 p.m.

    I think it's ironic that many of these children were taken by Warren Jeff from other parents and taken to El Dorado. He built the compound there and handpicked the people to come. He said that these were the chosen people. He also went to all the other coumpounds and handpicked children under 6 yrs old and took them away from their families to be raised by these stepford wives we are now seeing on TV. Do you feel so sorry for the parents whose children were stolen? No wonder the children don't know who they are because they don't know who they are!

  • T in Texas
    April 16, 2008 10:32 p.m.

    Clearly there are abuses occuring within the FLDS society, and the abusers should be held accountable for breaking the law. As closed as this group is, I'm not sure that there is a way to uncover the abuse without getting a warrant and penetrating the compound.

    At the same time, I'm struggling to understand how any court could grant such a broad warrant based on the individual and unverified claims of a one(potentially non-existant) girl. The removal of 400+ people based on a couple of phone calls from one person? Seems a bit extreme and on the verge of religious persecution.

    If this "Sarah" indeed exists, I sure hope that she's found, her story can be confirmed, and the guilty parties are apprehended. Until then, it's starting to look like someone manufactured this story with devious intent. If that's the case, can we expect law enforcement to pursue the false informant with the same kind of zeal as they have the FLDS? Please don't let us down Texas.

  • SparkyVA
    April 16, 2008 10:25 p.m.

    CPS by the nature of their job has a high rate of mistakes, and they generally get to walk away from those mistakes without even saying "sorry". With such a large number of cases, no one can deny that many mistakes have been made that have caused hardship. I see this as a no-win for all sides with perhaps better guidance and control over what the CPS takes on. The higher ups have to be thinking now: "What have we gotten ourselves into?" I wait for the evidence that will justify this draconian action. I am afraid that it won't be forthcoming.

  • Cosette Green
    April 16, 2008 9:45 p.m.

    I have a question -- Are the FLDS mothers and their children on welfare? I mean, are the fathers of all these children supporting them? I'm just curious. The whole thing is kinda' weird . . . Yes, they are openly breaking the law by practicing poligamy and they should be prosecuted on that basis. I hope things work out well for the children; after all, they are the real victims.

  • Hey Steve in Texas
    April 16, 2008 9:15 p.m.

    " I don't know if you are LDS, but we have had a history of people with axes to grind - always "former members" - who exaggerate and tell over the top lies about us. "

    Why don't you do a little research into the trial and conviction of Warren Jeffs, former leader, prophet, revelator and still leader judging from the letters of Colorado City officials to him while he is in jail. There is much documented in the way this cult and it's practices involving very young girls beyond former members with an ax to grind ...

  • KH
    April 16, 2008 8:51 p.m.

    Those in defense of the FLDS should find a woman who has escaped the FLDS cult and ask a few questions. If you can find one who is not in hiding and in fear for her life.

    1. We need to quit quibbling over the age of marriage and get to the real issue. If brides (whether you are talking lawful, spiritual or celestial marriage) are not consenting, too young to understand what they are consenting to, or, as is often the case, brainwashed or coerced into consenting, it's called RAPE and is illegal and should cause the whole country to rise up in protest.

    2. The rituals and ceremonies which take place in the temples in the name of religion would be illegal if performed anywhere else and should be exposed for the horrendous acts they are.

    3. The disciplinary actions used to control and brainwash children and adults are illegal and need to come to an end.

    What is reported on the news is the tip of the iceberg. We should all be mortified that a cult the size of the FLDS could exist and flourish in our great country.

  • Tina
    April 16, 2008 8:13 p.m.

    Please! CPS is always doing this to children! The system is despirate for reform and each and every one of those blessed children represents a huge revenue for those little nazi snots in control. CPS will NEVER give those kids back. It's just not in thier agenda. They know they have to answer to no one! AMERICA WAKE UP- YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD COULD BE NEXT> If there is a child molester living on your street they better step in and take your kids to protect them too... think about it.

  • Re: Hey Mr. Chet
    April 16, 2008 7:58 p.m.

    I dont get the part about the kidnapping of children of innocent parents being constitutional. Its not like I expect you to understand it either. You obviously dont understand much more than that. And when did they let fast food cooks use the internet during work? Shouldnt you be paying more attention to the fries?

    If you must know, I am not FLDS. I also have no multiple personalities. Youre just going to have to learn to deal with the fact that some people agree with me. That seems to really bum you out.

    Im sure someone who picks fights with strangers on the internet so he can go home after flipping burgers and tell Daddy what a big man he is can easily understand what is logical or just about stealing other peoples children when no member of their family is guilty of anything other than unfashionable religious beliefs.

    The grown ups on this message board are here to speak out against the violation of human rights taking place. You probably cant relate if the worst thing you can imagine is Daddy not giving you his keys.

    So what other human rights violations do you applaud? Tell me more.

  • Real World Good Mom
    April 16, 2008 7:56 p.m.

    Parents are responsible for raising their children well even when there is sin around them. These parents are too brainwashed and naive to teach their kids how to live in the real world.

    I am raising my son in Texas, having moved here because there were people with similar values to my own. I homeschooled him for years and then put him in public school, but I selected the school and transport him there by car. I don't have a TV, video games or free access internet in the house, but I do allow him to watch TV on the internet with me and also watch movies I approve and surf the internet with close supervision.

    My son is a top honor student, respectful, a superb musician, good at chores and already has university scholarships though he is in 9th grade. He has always maintained that he will personally care for me when I am old.

    There are drugs, illicit sex, pornography and other bad influences in our town. But, my son is raised well enough and with protection so that he does not personally participate. He is taught to make good choices. FLDS kids need a chance too.

  • Alex
    April 16, 2008 7:50 p.m.


    "I would like to hear what President Monson has to say about polygamy. It would certainly determine if me and my family stays or leaves. "

    Why would he need to comment on this case in the first place? Supposing he did comment, what answer are you looking for?

  • Randolph Holladay
    April 16, 2008 6:44 p.m.

    It appears that a number of feminist ex-FLDS Women are writing to this blog. All of the rhetoric about abuse and forced marriage sounds quite familiar and repetitive.

    I would be the first to oppose any practice that harms a child (including forced separation from parents), but accusation by innuendo and detention without evidence is something foreign to this country's laws and repellant to most Americans.

    So they have no social problems amoung the Baptists of West Texas? This smacks of pure bigotry of the worst kind.

    I have rarely heard of draconian actions by child protecdtive services and it's minions that didn't end in disaster. These women seem to be obsessed with the purient in their self-rightous pusuit of control and power over their charges. Where is the milk of human kindness, where is civility? Can decency be cast aside in the name of a "good cause"?

    Heaven help these poor people and their persecutors to find their way out of this mess without permanent destruction of their families.

  • Sara
    April 16, 2008 6:43 p.m.

    I would like to hear what President Monson has to say about polygamy. It would certainly determine if me and my family stays or leaves.

  • Frank
    April 16, 2008 6:05 p.m.

    We have strong double standards in Utah, so we will go with wherever the ball bounces.

  • Steve in Texas
    April 16, 2008 6:08 p.m.

    Dear Sugar Momma, I appreciate your balanced approach of "wait and see". I have not read Carolyn Jessop's book, but I'm wary about people that have an axe to grind and go on a crusade. I don't know if you are LDS, but we have had a history of people with axes to grind - always "former members" - who exaggerate and tell over the top lies about us. There are some who still think we have horns on our heads, sex on the alters of the temples, or sacrifice virgins in the temples for crying out loud! I'm all for prosecuting the perpetrators, but let's be careful not to persecute an entire religious community based on perhaps uninformed opinions. The rule of law should be the only test here in my (not so humble) opinion.

  • DW
    April 16, 2008 5:53 p.m.

    Reply to 'Texas is right'...When Texas law enforcement goes into the homes of each and every American female citizen within its boarders that is age 16 or younger and was inpregnated by a young man over the age of 19 and arrests each one involved...justice in Texas will be served and it can once again stand proud. Let's mess with Texas!!

  • Bobbie
    April 16, 2008 5:29 p.m.

    I disagree with the statements of some that the FLDS children are being brainwashed by their parents. It does not matter what religon one is born into, the parents teach their own religous beliefs to their children and in turn 'brainwashes' the child into their thinking and belief patterns. Apparently Texans believe that their own 'brainwashed' beliefs are the only worthy beliefs and that all others must be protected from their 'faulty' brainwashing they were born into. All 400+ victims have been labeled as 'faulty' and therefore, according to Texas, must be deprogrammed and brainwashed into another cult of religion as set forth by the state.

  • Sugar Momma
    April 16, 2008 5:27 p.m.

    Remember guys, the state of Texas has had an informant for four years feeding them information. This raid was based on way more than a phone call.
    I want to see what comes up in court before I take sides.

    As for Texas extracting nearly 550 people, yeah it's over the top. But dude. It's Texas. YFZ's bad for migrating to that state to avoid the law.

    My heart does break for the moms, but Carolyn Jessop's escape story is terrifying. Google her, look it up on Youtube, or something. Her x-husband is now the head of YFZ ranch, and HE is a megolomaniac FREAK. It's why I believe there's a great deal of substance to all this.

    Disclaimer - I know this is an extremist version of the FLDS. I'm not pigeonholing the entire religion based on the alleged actions of this sect. That would be ignorant.

  • wrz
    April 16, 2008 5:11 p.m.

    >>Removing a child from a parent is an extreme power, and should not be used without due diligence. Arizona used their brain, Texas used their bias.

  • Texas is right
    April 16, 2008 5:12 p.m.

    I support Texas in its mission to protect children. It is against the law, in Texas, for children under 16 to be married and for them to engage in sex with men 19 or up. Period. The law is being broken again and again. Period.

  • Hey Mr. Chet
    April 16, 2008 4:58 p.m.

    "But as long as the blessed government is cracking down and an unfashionable religion, its wonderful, right?"

    Listen, I'm being very serious here. If you're an FLDSer, you're NOT doing them (the cult) any favors. You loook rather foolish to most non-FLDSers and non-FLDS sympathizers and in my view. What do I base that on? .. I base that on folks here at my work reading your justifications, rationalizations, non-sequitors and just plain non-sense (and not just you Mr. Chet but your multiple personalities). Actually, I know that you'll just continue being Mr. Chet et. al.

    What part of: it's not about religion but about well documented behavior regarding the systematic and unlawful marriage of little girls to older men just like Uncle Warren says don't you get?

  • wrz
    April 16, 2008 4:52 p.m.

    >>Sure, sexual abuse is bad, but what has occured at the hands of Texas authorities this past week, is so much worse on so many levels.

  • Matt in Tucson
    April 16, 2008 4:53 p.m.

    "Better safe than sorry." What a joke. It is fine if you are determining what is safe and who is sorry. However, what if someone decides, due to religious differences, that your child is not safe with you? Removing a child from a parent is an extreme power, and should not be used without due diligence. Arizona used their brain, Texas used their bias.

  • Sherri
    April 16, 2008 4:36 p.m.

    I find it so sad that the police can storm a ranch, search every nook and cranny and remove 400+ children because they have a report that one girl is endangered. Yet here is Salt Lake, a poor little girl goes missing and it takes well over a day to get permission to search for her- One is over zealous and the other is too restrictive.

  • Alex
    April 16, 2008 4:36 p.m.

    To imply that if I choose to be a bit ambivalent about the Texas handling of this case, that I am thereby condoning abuse, is downright dishonest. It is unfounded. I don't have to apologize for my hesitancy. Look, if the state of Texas will show corroborating evidence, then you will find me throwing the book at the perpetrators with gusto. I'm all for justice--justice for the guilty. Justice has no better friend than me. However, isn't it a better idea to find out for sure first before you start suing for PERMANENT custody. I don't know whether they are guilty or innocent and neither do you.

  • John
    April 16, 2008 4:39 p.m.

    People just need to openly practice polygamy and then these things wouldn't happen. I agree with Steven. All LDS members need to look at our history. We were once polygamists and will again someday soon. So we just need to know that our deep desires will be satisfied before God in his wisdom.

  • Irony
    April 16, 2008 4:31 p.m.

    You know, the FLDS could have avoided this situation. All they had to do is leave US territory. There are over 43 countries in the world with age of consent laws of 12 and 14. In most of those countries you the minimum marriage age is 13.
    For example, in one Mexican state, the AoC is literally 12. In Colombia it is 14. In the middle east the marriage age is 13. Perhaps the Texas CPS should consider invading other nations if they feel so concerned about "protecting the interests of children". Or is it because the person who heads CPS is angling to run for political office????

    Or maybe the FLDS should emigrate in masse since the state of Texas has a long history of intolerance toward faiths who teach things opposed to what traditional mainstream christianity teaches.

  • its_Chet
    April 16, 2008 4:30 p.m.

    Steve in Texas, I salute you.

    And I apologize if anything I've said about Texas has rubbed you the wrong way.

    I hope this fascist act by the state is not representative of the majority of Texans. I want to believe in Texas again.

  • It's all relavtive 2
    April 16, 2008 4:23 p.m.

    Is it not interesting how Texas says it does not recognize polygamous marriages. Nor does Texas recognize underage marriages. Yet in this case, the state of Texas is recognizing both polygamy and underage marriages.
    Further, in order to be legally married you need a state license. Since when did Texas issue licenses for underage girls to marry? Afterall, isn't that the only way for underage marriages to be even considered valid?
    Fact is no license was issued. Therefore, therefore, the state of Texas cannot recognized either the polygamous marriages or the underage marriages. Hence the marriages are not legally valid and not prosecutable.
    It looks like Texas has no idea what it is doing in this case and there is a lot of people being hurt because of government incompetence.

  • It's all relative
    April 16, 2008 4:16 p.m.

    It's all relative. The group is being persecuted for its religious and cultural differences from the rest of us.
    They made the claims that all the children were abused or in danger of abuse simply from the tenets taught by their religious faith. When you use a group's religion to say they are child abusers, that sounds a lot like religious persecution.

  • its_Chet
    April 16, 2008 4:11 p.m.

    Shame on Texas, or at least the portion of it involved in this. The governor has given it his stamp of approval, so there's a lot of shame to go around on.

    I used to admire and respect Texas. I used to think the FLDS were simply creepy people who were doctrinally in error and causing problems as a result.

    This fascist gestapo trick changes things a bit. I still disagree with the FLDS on a lot of things, and I say that any of them found to be committing statutory rape (especially in cases where the girl is coerced or pressured) should be punished. But kidnapping 416 children is the stupidest possible way to handle it. Things are worse now than ever could have been before.

    It was not necessary to rip terrified, crying children from their terrified, crying mothers arms. It was not necesary to bring in machine guns and APCs and helicopters and armed thugs.

    Whatever these kids went through before pales in comparison to what they're going through now.

    Shame on Texas.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 4:00 p.m.

    Shame on all agencies and groups involved in the kidnapping at gunpoint of 416 children in spite of the cries and tears of both women and children.

    Shame on these people for acting like Nazis, thus abundantly earning the comparison.

    Shame on anyone who automatically writes off all the men in that community (and they aren't all steretypical "dirty old men", which you can learn right here on this website). There is no excuse for sexism. At least some of those men are good fathers who didn't deserve to have their children abducted by a hostile government agency.

    And shame on anyone who says shame on me after failing to see my side of it. Does that sound fair?

    The kidnapping of every child as some bizarre result of an alleged allegation against a single grown man is sick and evil. It's fascist. Clearing out the whole community of children, ripping them from the families, is a good day's work for a Nazi concentration camp. I will not permit it to go uncriticized. That is my constitutional right, for whatever that's worth these days.

  • Steve in Texas
    April 16, 2008 4:05 p.m.

    If people disagree with you then they must be the same poster? Wow, that's arrogant! I won't have enough space to put all my feelings, so let me just say this: I'm active LDS, returned missionary, my wife's a returned missionary, I'm a Texan, I'm part Native American (Cherokee), so am sensitive to everything from Missouri persecution in the early days of the church, to the "Trail of Tears" where the Cherokee were forcibly removed, to the atrocity (yes, atrocity) at Waco. It's the same MO (Modus Operendi) every time. People think you're wierd, events are exaggerated, law is disregarded, and group judgements result in forcible removal or murder. The reason we have laws is to protect the INDIVIDUAL. Tell me how taking an entire community's children is warranted from ONE alleged abuse call. If you respond "they're brainwashed", you don't understand the term. If you say they're all abused, or at risk, I'm betting you'll find that's not at all the case. Speaking to the LDS here - How quickly we all forget our own history! Investigate and lock up the perpetrators, but to strip the entire community of all of their children is criminal.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 3:56 p.m.

    Isn't polygamy illegal in this country? Unfortunately, these people are suffering the consequences of their illegal actions. Maybe if this was enforced everywhere, people would be discouraged from practicing. Call me crazy!

    April 16, 2008 3:35 p.m.

    You want to marry more than one wife because you think god wants you to do so, fine, marry a wife who is willing and can make up her own mind.

    The issue is not polygamy, it is child abuse. Don't be a sicko by forcing yourself on a kid who has been brainwashed...

    Good job Texas for stepping in, the allegations had to be checked out. Shame on all of you who compare the Texas government who is trying to protect the children to Nazis. I have never heard a more lame comparison, brush up on your history or tone down your hyperbole.

  • wondering in idaho
    April 16, 2008 3:34 p.m.

    is it true that this cult was collecting welfare for the children? interesting that this cult will take money/services from the heathen world, but not talk to us). could anyone elaborate?

  • its_Chet
    April 16, 2008 3:28 p.m.

    You dont have to be FLDS to be enraged about a fascist state run amok, kidnapping innocent children from innocent mothers to the tune of 416 children, and this on the basis of an allegation against one man, made by a ghost.

    You just have to not be evil enough to chuckle in glee at the thought of screaming, crying children being ripped by force and at gunpoint from their screaming, crying mothers, and taken to a reeducation camp by a conglomeration of hostile government agents and contemptuous religious bigots to be invasively and sexually examined, questioned, brainwashed, programmed, and all this in a strange place, surrounded by strange people, with no idea where their parents are or if theyll ever see them again. In other words, hell on earth, an unspeakable nightmare. And these are children were talking about. All of them young enough to be scared and psychologically scarred for life as a result of this fascist escapade.

    Even if every last accusation I have heard was true, what is being done to the children and their mothers now is WORSE.

    But as long as the blessed government is cracking down and an unfashionable religion, its wonderful, right?

  • JJ
    April 16, 2008 3:27 p.m.

    If thier had been a mass suicide, all of you that are saying how wrong the state of Texas was for going in thier would be crying "where was the state before this happened.
    I am very optimistic that the truth will come out and everyone is going to feel really stupid for doubting the authorities in Texas

    April 16, 2008 2:52 p.m.

    Strange, you didn't include a RIGHT of the people to sexually abuse their children.

    Maybe it was further down the list and you just couldn't find it.

  • To the FLDS redux
    April 16, 2008 2:37 p.m.

    "Amazing how many names are obviously the same FLDS poster. You don't even change your style of English.

    Same insults, over and over.

    Try the off button."

    You've further refined my thinking. I've moved from: "Geeez, the LDS is really supportive of the FLDS" given the Deseret News forums to: "it must be the FLDS out in force to cause another short creek" to: it's only a handful of FLDSers posting as multiple people. There is NO WAY that so many good folks could overlook the documented atrocities of the convicted and jailed Warren Jeffs (including his father before him) and his creation.

  • Jed
    April 16, 2008 2:41 p.m.

    I thought I'd come on this blog and read something interesting today... Well, NO!

    It's my birthday man!

  • Sugar Momma
    April 16, 2008 2:20 p.m.

    The article said that the CPS really believed they had a strong case. I'm really curious to see what evidence they have in addition to that one phone call.

    Though the thought of foster care homes as these childrens' destination makes me twitch. I hope they at least let the mothers who are minors stay with their children, since legally and technically, they are victims, too.

    On that note, in this little YFZ Taliban, ALL of the women are technically victims, but they're just not educated nor self-aware enough to realize it.

  • To the FLDS
    April 16, 2008 2:25 p.m.

    Amazing how many names are obviously the same FLDS poster. You don't even change your style of English.

    Same insults, over and over.

    Try the off button.

  • Remember a few things
    April 16, 2008 2:16 p.m.

    First if you have followed the story the Sherriff stated that he has had a contact inside the compound for 4 years giving him information about the going ons inside. SO no it's not a storm the gates and run in weapons blazing they've done the work. Second if you want to talk religious freedom, maybe we should examine this idea, just claiming this is my right because of my religion doesn't fly with me. I just see it now someone murders another person and states they did it as part of the religion. Are they innocent of any crime? I doubt it. Some religions do this already, if you change religious affiliation you'll be killed by those of your former religion. The authorities went in because someone called stating they were being abused. If this church is so upstanding than why were they hiding the children as the authorities came in? The sherriff also stated the adults of the compound were moving the children from house to house trying to keep them from being taken. If they have nothing to hide than allow the children to go and that will make the return that much faster.

  • Califas
    April 16, 2008 2:14 p.m.

    TO SOKOL: To better understand the willingness with which the FLDS "mothers" returned to the FLDS compound and their abusers, please familiarize yourself with Stockholm's Syndrome. Wikipedia defines this syndrome as:
    "Stockholm syndrome is a psychological response sometimes seen in an abducted hostage, in which the hostage shows signs of loyalty to the hostage-taker, regardless of the danger (or at least risk) in which the hostage has been placed. Stockholm syndrome is also sometimes discussed in reference to other situations with similar tensions, such as battered person syndrome, rape cases, child abuse cases and bride kidnapping. The syndrome is named after the Norrmalmstorg robbery of Kreditbanken at Norrmalmstorg, Stockholm, Sweden, in which the bank robbers held bank employees hostage from August 23 to August 28 in 1973. In this case, the victims became emotionally attached to their victimizers, and even defended their captors after they were freed from their six-day ordeal..."
    Now, given this useful psychological explanation for why these "mothers" so readily return to abuse, IS NO EXCUSE TO RETURN THE CHILD- VICTIMS TO THEIR ABUSERS! These children are hostages for life and should be given the option of choice! I applaud TCPS!

  • To Anonymous Calls
    April 16, 2008 2:07 p.m.

    There were multiple calls, all recorded.

    Read the court transcripts people before you open your mouth and sound derranged.

    There was an inside informant. Backup to what was going on.

    What don't you understand?

  • To FLDS
    April 16, 2008 2:05 p.m.

    Post defenses of your actions. Good luck.

    This busy of be-deviling everyone because you messed up is bunk.

  • To Texas Shame?
    April 16, 2008 2:08 p.m.

    Stop making up conclusions where none are warranted.

    According to news reports there are approximately 20 young women age 13-16 who are pregnant by adult men.

    The only Shame is people like you who try to change the subject. Stay on subject. ABUSE.

  • Anonymous Calls
    April 16, 2008 2:08 p.m.

    For all those complaining that Texas launched an investigation based on an anonymous call, do you have a secret agenda to get rid of all 9-1-1 call centers?

    There's probably not a second goes by in this country that authorities aren't investigating a possible crime based on nothing but an anonymous call.

    If you're going to criticize, at least come up with something original instead of this lame argument that it was ONLY an anonymous call.

    April 16, 2008 1:48 p.m.

    TRAMPLED IN TEXAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;

    Gonna git you cathalics and funmintalists next!!!!!
    Amendment IV
    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
    We dont need no stinkin pwobal caus anonymous fone call will do!!!

    Amendment VIII
    Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
    Hmmm lets see,,, 400 PLUS five to 15 year old children being ISOLATED, DETAINED, AND questioned by the AUTHORITIES without their parents and or legal representation?????????????????????

  • Paul in Mexifornia
    April 16, 2008 1:45 p.m.

    This reaks of impropriety and descrimination. This all based on an anonymous phone call regarding one man??-- SCARY. How do they justify taking all the children based on an anonymous call? Makes me wonder what could happen to my family based on an anonymous call. Americans- you better wake up. Let me anylize this for you- because they practice a religion that is strange or uncomfortable to the mainstream American, does that equate to abuse?? The State of Texas better have a overwhelming probable cause of abuse. HMMMMM, so if I don't like my neighbor, I can make an anonymous call to CPS and have them detroy him and steal his kids?? Wake up Sheeple!!

  • SGW
    April 16, 2008 1:38 p.m.

    As much as I don't like the idea of polygamy and some of the things this group may stand for, it's a truly scary thing to see the government just go in and take these children out en mass. If there was actually a case of abuse, then deal with that one case. Ripping these children away from their mothers is not called for! It sets a scary precedent. The day may come when it's your religion that people feel is a threat to children....

  • Ohio Valley
    April 16, 2008 1:39 p.m.

    We have not seen or heard all of the evidence yet. I am sure the authorities in Texas were smart enough to realize what they were doing an have looked at all of the angles before making the move. They had been observing this sect/compund for a long time,every since they bought the land and lied about why they were buying the land and then the scum bucket Warren Jeffs got in trouble. I would imagine the Govenor of Texas new this raid would take place at the 1st sign or call of someone being abused in the compund.The plan was in place to move forward at the 1st SOS from the compund.
    I would be a lot more worried if the goverment DID NOT take action over something like this. These people in the compund have been brainwashed and do not think rationally and become a danger to themselves and especially the innocent children. Look what the done to the teenage boys the booted out of the compound and left on there own.
    This cult and others like them need to have the front door kicked in an exposed for what they truly are. Disgusting at the very least.

  • Proud Former Texan
    April 16, 2008 1:31 p.m.

    Dear michaelh, you claim that Texas has rushed to judgement with "trumpted up charges" but the truth of the matter is that you have jumped to that conclusion without all of the facts. The children and their parents will have their day in court and it appears that Texas officials are proceeding in a timely manner. We will all learn soon enough if the charges are verifiable and in the mean time the children are out of danger or even the potential danger.

    By the way, Texas is a wonderful place and it will not miss you a bit.

  • wallofvoodoo
    April 16, 2008 1:13 p.m.

    In theory I think Texas did the right thing. If we are talking about things to look up, look up the Short Creek raid. Arizona with the blessing of Utah did the very same thing. Largely regarded as a disaster, I think that it was a lesson in what not to do. The reason that the FLDS are in Texas in the first place is because Utah is working on other more subtle means of accomplishing the same thing. Short Creek is a big reason why Utah never raided Colorado City. In short it was costly and ineffective. If Texas pulls this off, kudos. Texas is not generally know for subtlety, but I'm afraid they are going to find that they have gotten them selves in a messy, expensive and frustrating battle that they really don't want any part of any longer. But I hope they are sucessful, this abuse needs to stop.

  • Stepford Wives
    April 16, 2008 1:12 p.m.

    I don't think the FLDS mothers will ever get their kids back after watching their pathetic interviews on the Today Show this morning. They have pretty much shot themselves in the foot with their evasive answers.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 1:05 p.m.

    I am somewhat amazed at people criticising TX for their action, when these people have not had the priviledge of reading or examing the same evidence that TX has. TX has a long history of standing up to be counted against all odds...remember the alamo...!!!! TX has do the right thing in acting, now the attorneys and such have to argue differently or in favor. But TX did the right thing atleast they acted where others have turned their backs. People leave TX alone...don't mess with TX

  • Clifton
    April 16, 2008 12:55 p.m.

    Wise up folks! The 350 Lawyers are defending the kids, for nothing, so how do you bigots think the FLDS are going to get fat from this?

    Another thing, some here refer to the the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution's freedom of Religion. So are only a selected few Religions such as Catholics, Evangelicals, and other Protestant sects should be free to practice what they believe, while the FLDS cannot? Apparently the Branch Davidians in Waco were amongs those who didn't measure up to 1st Amendment rights either.

    Almost forgot! Some critisize the Deseret News for sugar coating the News about the FLDS. Well I say Hooray for the Deseret News! At least they had the nereve to tell the other side of the predicament the FLDS find themselves in, rather than the Public relying on the biasedand slanted reporting of local and MSM. Thanks Deseret news for showing pictures the heavy handed tactics and equiptment used by Texas law enforcement.

  • Sokol
    April 16, 2008 12:54 p.m.

    If that were true, which I doubt that you have the
    facts, then why did only 6 women go to a shelter..and many were lied to...Why did they take
    their cell phones? You are referring to men, some maybe fathers. Of course, underlieing most of the
    anti religious, zelophobic do gooders, is the need
    to bash men. Do you think any of the department
    has a natural bias against this religion and of
    course fathers? There are hundreds of people in
    even Utah, that have had their children taken away
    because of a false allegation. Some 'report' anonymously made, maybe that report never existed and
    was another fabrication by TEXAS CPS officials.
    Again, more due process rights and protections are given to criminal than parents in these CPS interventions. It is a stretch for you to include
    drug involvement, when all we have is one affadavit,
    but all parents, and all children affected.

  • questioning
    April 16, 2008 12:52 p.m.

    let's wait for proof of abuse before we say who's right or wrong. We are only hearing from the media.

  • AS
    April 16, 2008 12:45 p.m.

    Separating children from their mothers is a very heartbreaking thing to do. I am sure these FLDS mothers genuinely love and care for their children. However, child abuse of any kind cannot be condoned, and these people have brought this on themselves. Older men having sex with girls under the age of 18 is a crime, and it is abuse, whether they are "consenting" or not. Most states do not recognize a minor's right to "consent". I do not agree with the FLDS way of life, but they do have a right to live the way they do, as adults. They do not have the right to pressure or even allow minor girls into sexual relationships with men, or banish young boys from the fold. If the FLDS were smart enough to not "marry" off their girls until they are at least 18, and thus consenting adults, they could have avoided all of this. Let us hope that some good can come of this and these children can find some semblance of happiness after all this is said and done.

  • Ask Yourselves
    April 16, 2008 12:45 p.m.

    To all those that defend the FLDS Church. Girls are born at a rate of 51%, while boys 49%. Notice how that is almost 50/50. What happens to all those boys when a few men have 4 or more wives? Oh, they get tossed out, using the most ridiculous of excuses, especially if they are decent looking and draw the attention of young females that old men and sometimes uncle hope to put in their stable (as in the Warren Jeffs case.) Is kicking out the competition for females in your religion text? Is abandoning sons of Israel glorious in the eyes of the Lord? I think the Lord sees it as child abuse and has some scriptures referring to millstones. As for Texas, they simply are applying the Rule of Law to such criminal actions by parents.

  • Prod One
    April 16, 2008 12:40 p.m.

    The way Texas acted with NO evidence was way beyond any thing reasonable. Investigate, that is fine, but had they investigated they would have found that the call was not even made by a member of the church. This is the equivalent of Stalinist jackbooted thugs kicking down your door because a neighbor denounced you to the state.

    I am not a member of the FLDS or LDS - Presbyterian in fact, but this is some scary stuff.

  • Sorry
    April 16, 2008 12:39 p.m.

    I love Texas!!! They don't mess with anything. That is why they are not push-overs like the rest of the U.S.A.. Go get them Texas.

  • Sokol
    April 16, 2008 12:36 p.m.

    We have more elitists that are ready to deny religious people their due process and constitutional rights. These people were
    attacked because they were diffent, if the
    were from a minority background or Muslim
    every liberal fascist would be screaming to
    help, but since they people are white with
    conservative views, they are not allowed
    to have any human rights protections.
    The hypocrisy is self evident.

  • Unbelievable
    April 16, 2008 12:33 p.m.

    I can't believe how many comments there are on this site stating that Texas should not have taken action against this group. There are many reasons stated why Texas should have done nothing and allowed this abuse to continue. To the people that say there is no evidence of abuse I say...THERE ARE MANY MANY UNDERAGE GIRLS WITH BABIES THAT HAVE ONLY HAD CONTACT WITH THE MEN AT THE RANCH...THAT IS PROOF OF ABUSE NOW WE HAVE TO FIGURE OUT WHICH OF THE COWARD SILENT MEN ARE GUILITY. That can be done with DNA Testing. And most of the DNA at this ranch is pretty close.

  • they love to punish people
    April 16, 2008 12:33 p.m.

    This is the sort of thing that will always happen when conservative authoritarians are given too much power. Conservatives love to punish people.

    The progressives tried to warn you, but ....

  • Re: Sokol
    April 16, 2008 12:33 p.m.

    If this was a compound filled with drug dealers and abusers you would be clapping for joy. Sounds like you are believing the FLDS PR machine.

    The ranch only had 50 men! Out of roughly 700 people at the ranch, just 50 of them were men over the age of 18. That's messed up.

    The women and children are all victims of mental and physical abuse from those 50 men. You scream of fascism and discrimination on the part of the U.S. government. What about the 50 men at that ranch discriminating, controling and raping women?

  • Concerned
    April 16, 2008 12:32 p.m.

    I stand behind the actions take by the CPS, it is better to be safe than sorry,leaving one child behind in a stiuation they should not have to deal with would be far worse. I agree that it was obvious from the interviews of the FLDS Mothers that there is a definate problem. Six women left for a "safer place". Not many out of 57 but way to many to not indicate that the others are afraid of something. If this is,as I have read, a society of generational interfamily marriage steps have to be taken to prevent this in the future. My heart goes out to the women and children who must be terrified in such an unfamilar situation. The saddest fact of all is that Texas authority did not act on this a very long time ago. They could have found a way if they wanted to.

  • Evidence?
    April 16, 2008 12:28 p.m.

    I don't understand how the TX or Fed officials are okay with this. They must be keeping something from the media and the general public.
    When TX had the Br Davidians, outside Waco, there was plenty of evidence before they did anything. It was clear that they had hidden illegal arms, when a UPS employee accidentally discovered a box of grenades being delivered to them. David Koresh holed himself up and called in his leaders to help fight a search warrant.
    Where is any evidence to justify this raid?

  • Re:Good Grief
    April 16, 2008 12:31 p.m.

    Texas did take instant control of the situation and Someone, or Many, will be arrested at YFZ ranch as soon as the investigation is complete. Someone impregnated many underage girls and I guess that could be the "somebody screwed up and will be arrested" in the last scenario.

  • Hummmm?
    April 16, 2008 12:13 p.m.

    To Anonymous 11:45 a.m.
    NOPE! you have that wrong. UTAH is the worst! They still have polygamist here. They act like this is just an okay and go about their daily business. They seem to over look the FLDS cultists about their noses. MAKES ME SICK!!!

  • Lionheart
    April 16, 2008 12:12 p.m.

    Kay 11:39: Your story just breaks my heart. I pray that your children will be returned and justice will be served for you. None the less, you were right to have run with your children and someday all will be added back to you.

  • To Anon
    April 16, 2008 12:12 p.m.

    Anonymous Stated "Texas is the worst state in the union" NO Anonymous, Utah has that title. If Utah had put a stop to this practice a hundred years ago we would not have this situation today. Texas is merely protecting the children. Hopefully this will enlighten Utah and Az. and they will begin protecting the children in their states. Hopefully before every child is born with Fumarase Deficiency.If you don't know what that is google it. It is caused by all of the inbreeding. But you can't see anything wrong with what they are doing.

  • Here we go again
    April 16, 2008 12:09 p.m.

    Now that all of us armchair analysts are crucifying Texas AGAIN, I think that maybe we should all take the time to do some research on these "peace loving people" Read the article "Tempest in Texas " on the Southern Poverty Law Center website. I have lived in Texas for the last 16 years and am very happy that I'm here. I personally wish that the "Little House on the Prairie" people would pack their little covered wagons and haul their carcasses back to Utah or Arizona. The biggest mistake that Texas made was not rounding them up when they found out that they lied about the ranch that they bought.

  • Cookie
    April 16, 2008 12:08 p.m.

    Whoops! Don't forget spellcheck? How about FUMARASE DEFICIENCY? That is worth looking up. Texas hit the nail on the head in not wanting taxpayers to pick up the tab for FLDS BIRTH DEFECTS and future BIRTH DEFECTS.

  • Sad Day for the US of A
    April 16, 2008 12:12 p.m.

    As much as I think that sexual abuse of children is reprehensible, I think this whole episode is yet another evidence of our society being just plain pre-occupied with sex. When *alleged* sexual abuse has the ability to trump all other constitutional guarantees of due process as well as the ability to trump common sense, it seems plain to me that it is just a sordid pre-occupation with the subject that drives all such nonsense. Good judgement gets thrown out the window. Remember the "recoverd memory" "sexual abuse" witchhunts of a decade ago?

    Sure, sexual abuse is bad, but what has occured at the hands of Texas authorities this past week, is so much worse on so many levels.

  • Sokol
    April 16, 2008 12:05 p.m.

    I am boycotting Texas for the remainder of my life.
    If anyone organizes rallies to support the families
    and their children, I will be there...It is fascistic. There is a stench of discrimination.
    The state had one allegation about one parent...NOT
    416...This will show the nation the frightful power
    that states have grabbed to deny parents their rights
    over allegations not proven facts....Meisner can say anything about the children's welfare. It was traumatic, unneccessary, unconstitutional and the
    worst event I have witnessed in the United States
    in my life...The children and parents should sue
    this state for every penny they have...AVOID THE
    TEXAS NAZI STATE OF AMERICA. Go somewhere else to
    spend your money.

  • My Outrage
    April 16, 2008 11:59 a.m.

    Do I believe that the government of Texas should take action to protect the victims of abuse? Absolutely.

    My outrage is twofold. First, I am outraged that "religious" men would abuse children in such an evil way. Second, I am outraged that the Texas law enforcement system would show such contempt for the law and violate the rights of their citizens.

    Prosecuting and punishing the people responsible for these atrocities on women and children is hard work that takes years to yield results.

    My fear is that five years from now, the Texas legal system will have failed have convicted a single FLDS pedophile because they did not take the time and effort to follow the law and do the long thankless work that Mark Shurtleff has engaged these past eight years in Utah.

    I fear that five years from now, all Texas will have accomplished is setting a precedent for unjustified search and seizure of children from families that CPS deems, in their "wisdom", to be unworthy.

    In its rush to do "whatever necessary to protect children", I fear Texas will have made it more difficult for people like Mr. Shurtleff to punish the real criminals.

  • Texas
    April 16, 2008 11:55 a.m.

    To all you weirdo Utahns that are so quick to criticize Texas and say Texas is out of line - that is nothing more than the pot calling the kettle black. If Utah had done what it was supposed to have done, this whole issue would have been cleared years ago and Texas wouldn't have to clean up the mess Utah refused to clean up.

    I lived in Utah (born and raised), and now live in Texas, and I love it here. I will never return to Utah, and plan on staying in Texas my entire life.

    Again, Texas is only doing what Utah should have done many, many years ago but was too afraid to do. Yep, it's Texas taking care of America again!!

  • good for the goose?
    April 16, 2008 11:55 a.m.

    Why is it that the same people clamoring for the heads of our illegal immigrant Mexican brothers and sisters now want us to put blinders on and ignore the law-breaking actions of this group?

  • Good Grief
    April 16, 2008 11:52 a.m.

    Wake up. The cop in your scenario will take instant control. Either the person holding the gun will be arrested for its misuse or the person being held will be arrested for threatening the gun holders life or property. There is no "potentially wrong person" in your scenario. Somebody screwed up and will be arrested.

  • Which Governor
    April 16, 2008 11:56 a.m.

    Which Governor used the following words to justify the actions of the state over which he governed?

    "I have received by [state employee] one of my aids, information of the most appalling character, which entirely changes the face of things, and places the [religious group] in the attitude of an open and avowed defiance of the laws, and of having made war upon the people of this state. Your orders are, therefore, to hasten your operation with all possible speed.

    The [religious group] must be treated as enemies, and must be exterminated or driven from the state if necessary for the public peace--their outrages are beyond all description."

    Everyone who thinks they know which governor wrote this raise your hands.

    Everyone who guessed Texas Governor Perry lower your hands and retake U.S. history.

    Now, everyone who thinks that these words would never be applied to their religious group lower your hands and read the words of George Santayana [1863-1953, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"].

    The answer? Governor Lilburn W. Boggs.

    The treatment of girls by the FLDS is a perversion and I abhor it. That, however does not justify Texas.

  • Califas
    April 16, 2008 11:48 a.m.


  • Joyce
    April 16, 2008 11:46 a.m.

    First, let me say that I think polygamy between consenting adults should be legalized, however, I support Texas completely. They went in on a warrent, saw evidence of another crime, in this case obviously underage pregnant girls. They were within the legal rights to take these girls and their parents and "husbands" and other children of the same families into custody. These girls would not identify their families, or even give their last names. Under those circumstances, all the children of the "residence," in this case ranch, legally should be taken into custody. The women of the FLDS do not have true free will. They think they do, but because of how they were raised, they do not. Even the Amish are allowed some contact with the outside world, and their teens are encouraged to look at the outside world before committing their lives to the church lifestyle. The FLDS don't have that. Actually, I think even most of the men are victims of just a few men that have become insane with power and lust.

  • Non-Texan
    April 16, 2008 11:45 a.m.

    I thought we lived in America where we, the people, have rights. Innocent people should never be persecuted under threat of having children removed from the family simply because of their regious beliefs. Especially by their state or federal government. What we should be asking is if probable cause standards of abuse have been met prior to separating the children from the parents. If so, procecute the guilty and leave the innocent alone. Shame on you Texas and shame on us for not holding the state responsible for their actions.

  • kay
    April 16, 2008 11:39 a.m.

    i to believe if child abuse was honestly committed then let judgement stand according to the law.....but in my case after getting out of polygamy with my childern and seeking help from my family in ohio, the state of ohio arbituarly stripped me of my parental rights of my childern. i was never charged of any crime. i carry a medical liscence and you cant do that if you are a criminal of child abuse. i called flora jessop and tapestry against polygamy to help me during these 3 yrs trying to get my childern back. i went to the media and received retribution by the court of cuyahoga county for telling my story to the public. i pray with all my heart that texas will treat each case FAIRLY and with TRUE proof and not make and example of these mothers as happened to me in ohio. Women will NEVER seek help from the system to come out of polygamy if they see others being mistreated. i havnt seen my childern in over a year nor am i allowed to call them. REMEMBER i was never charged with a crime.

  • Texans need to get a life!
    April 16, 2008 11:44 a.m.

    Why all the whoop'n and holler'n about Texas? This has nothing to do with Texas pride.

    "Don't mess with the kids of Texas" is a great slogan, but the success of Texas CPS belies the slogan.

    These are kids. Most born outside Texas. Who cares where they are from? If they are being abused, arrest the abusers. Don't 'arrest' 416 kids who might be abused.

    And keep your arrogant Texas pride to yourselves. It is not germane to the issue. What is germane is if people abused their children and if the authorities abused the constitution.

    I say we divide Alaska into three different states so Texas can be the fourth largest state.

    Texas pride. What a bunch of idiots!

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 11:45 a.m.

    Texas is the worst state in the union.

  • Texas Neighbor
    April 16, 2008 11:36 a.m.

    The fact that the legal age to marry is 16 is important only is you are talking about a man's first legal marriage. Any later spiritual marriage is not recognized by the state, so it is the statutory rape laws that apply.

  • unsupervised POWER of DCFS
    April 16, 2008 11:42 a.m.

    We have been victims ourselves of DCFS's unsupervised POWER.
    But this experience showed us how much they can HURT families, not help.
    They are needed but they need to have some supervision themselves. Yes it may be true that children may not speak openly with parents around but how hard would it be to put one more SAFETY NET in place? I think that any interview with a child should be TAPE RECORDED to protect the Child, the parents, and the worker. I've seen too many workers put thoughts into a child's mind and play with words to the point of confusing a child. What damage would there be to keep them in check by recording the interview? In the longrun it protects all parties involved!

  • Taylor
    April 16, 2008 11:36 a.m.

    It was a pretty childish act the FLDS woman did for the Media yesterday. I watched the whole thing on CNN and those FLDS women looked like 5 year old girls instead of grown mature women. Quite pitiful! I'm just wondering what on earth those FLDS men are doing to the minds of those women for them to act like that? It was way too weird. My family freaked when they saw those kind of actions coming from grown women.

  • take out the trash
    April 16, 2008 11:25 a.m.

    Don't Mess... | 11:11 a.m. Apr. 16, 2008
    Just a comment that the "Don't Mess With Texas" slogan is from an anti-litter campaign, not an expression of the character of the people of Texas.

    approprate none the less!

    I bet Texas can't wait to get this FLDS trash cleaned out of their state

  • Scared Crapless!
    April 16, 2008 11:29 a.m.

    Anytime a government agency goes in to a community and absconds with ALL its children in the name of 'child safety policy,' something is seriously wrong with the system, and regardless of if that community's religious beliefs and practices are agreed with or not (of which I strongly disagree with), certain Constitutional factors should be very carefully held to, or the backfire can be huge and onerous on the government.

    When the dust settles on this one I'm betting that the legal machines are going to finally get into high gear and chew the State of Texas (and any other religious organization that participated in this fiasco) up and spit them back out with huge settlements to the FLDS.

    The FLDS compounds may be the personification of Stepfordville squared, with all its inherent problems, but this thing of acting on anonymous tips in Tiger-like fashion has got to be pulled in and all states CPS agencies made to be accountable to the law, not to perceived best interests of a child. And, a whole community should not suffer for what a few miscreants do in that community, leastwise to the point of absconding with all their children.

    It's wrong!

  • Natejess
    April 16, 2008 11:18 a.m.

    I do not condone abuse of any kind against any person (male, female, adult, or child).

    But I feel that Texas has gone about this situation the wrong way by discarding the constitution in rounding up these families.

    They have opened Pandora's Box, and I doubt anyone is going to be able to close it now, even the Supreme Court.

  • Ned B.
    April 16, 2008 11:16 a.m.

    I agree with STAY SWEET,

    Those women yesterday were the biggest fakes I have ever laid eyes on while watching the news, when the media cameras hit their faces, the FLDS women immediately started their fake acting and sobbing. That was the worst acting I have ever seen in a quick movie. Geezes!

  • To Good Grief
    April 16, 2008 11:16 a.m.

    Good Grief: If a policeman is walking down the street and sees someone pointing a gun at someone else. Should he (a) Wait until he actually shoots him or (b) Stop the situation and see what the situation is about. I recommend stopping the situation, even though you only have a potential dead man, because once the guy is dead you can not make him un-dead. You can not make a child un-abused.

  • Justin
    April 16, 2008 11:15 a.m.

    It is inherently harmful to children of religious zealots to inculcate their children with religious views which anyone with common sense knows is false. The State can and should protect the children of these zealots by taking custody of these children by force, deprograming them, and replacing their belief system with one that is approved by the State.

    Definition of religious zealot: anyone who believes sincerely and passionately in a faith system which is obviously not true nor believeable as determined by those in power, i.e. that a person can die and come back to eternal life, that a person not present can "hear" the thoughts not only of my mind but of billions of others at the same time, that water or blood can take away the guilt of my wrongful acts, that by merely professing belief in a person, my eternal happiness in assured, . . .

  • katie
    April 16, 2008 11:06 a.m.

    i have a hard time with this subject. on one hand i feel texas did what they thought was right. it's an odd situation with the FLDS church. They are isolated and do things very different than most people. People have a hard time understanding why they do the things they do. A lot of people don't even understand just what is going on in those towns. Social services received a call from a girl who claimed to being sexually abused. That's a definite call to action. Well when you enter a community that seems very strange compared to the rest of the country, seeing MANY children, MANY wive (many of which are very very young), you begin to suspect the worst. So them taking hundreds of children was the only thing they knew to do with the situation they were given. We defintely want to protect children from harmful situations.

    At the same time though, I'm worried it might have been taken too far. I feel sorry for the innocent people involved, which likely is most of them. They do what they feel is right. Just because its strange to the rest of the country, doesn't make it wrong.

  • Don't Mess...
    April 16, 2008 11:11 a.m.

    Just a comment that the "Don't Mess With Texas" slogan is from an anti-litter campaign, not an expression of the character of the people of Texas.

  • stay sweet
    April 16, 2008 11:04 a.m.

    the 3 gals fake sobbing was priceless. ducking the question about if there are any 16 year old girls married to older men

  • to Califas
    April 16, 2008 11:01 a.m.

    Califas: You are exactly right. The Mothers should be prosecuted along with the fathers. This has gone on since the beginning and it is time to bring it to an end.

  • Preston Naylor
    April 16, 2008 10:59 a.m.

    If any abuse has occured why are not the men occused of the abuse arrested? Tragically the Court authorized heavily armed law enforcement officers to take (arrest) the victims, women and children, against their will based on a single spurious, unsubstaniated phone allegation of child abuse while the men were left alone and free. What ever happened to due process? Does any one think for a second these families feel safe in the protective nurturing care of the state? Frankly the only substantiated abuse that has occured has been by the State of Texas. Futhermore all parents should be concerned about this horrible precedence which will only jepordize the constitutional rights and responsibilities of Parents and further embolden unjustified goverenment interfence into our personal lives.

  • Jacob
    April 16, 2008 11:05 a.m.

    Anyone who condones child abuse and slavery of women is a true loser!

  • Mike
    April 16, 2008 11:03 a.m.

    I proudly live in Texas!!

    Apparently the defenders of this ongoing child abuse have never read or listened to former members who finally escaped this insanity.

    Don't mess with the kids of Texas.

    Go Texas!!

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 10:57 a.m.


  • observer
    April 16, 2008 10:54 a.m.

    I'm really sick and tired of this ongoing saga, and don't plan on reading the paper anymore.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 10:45 a.m.


  • Califas
    April 16, 2008 10:51 a.m.

    WAIT FOR THE EVIDENCE, FOLKS! It will be so damning and so horrifying, that all these crocodile tears for the "poor moms and dads" will be for naught! This "religion" will be outed for what it is: A SEX CULT! The old pervs, masquerading as "church elders", will be unmasked. We will discover--as the government of Texas has known--that little girls are traded as sex slaves throughout the cult. FLDS will make the child sex industry of Thailand look like Disneyland!! Worse yet, these so-called mothers will be shown to be abusive when the plight of their "lost boys" is publicized. These mothers have allowed the perverted older men of the community to banish their defenseless young sons to the outside world, where these same sons must fend for themselves on the streets of America! These so-called mothers and fathers callously abandon their sons to the world, because the old perverted men see the boys as potential competition for sexual access to the little girls! How grotesque is that? Huh? What monsters are these "parents" to have so utterly failed their children?

  • CA
    April 16, 2008 10:44 a.m.

    When the police went to find the girl that called they saw many teen aged looking girls who also appeared to be pregnant. When the officer asked one girl how old she was, the girl did not answer but looked to the husband. The husband said "You are 18." The girl turned to the officer and said "I'm 18." That why all the kids were taken- because they were lying. The phones were removed when it was realized the men were calling and telling the women and kids what to do and say. The women would not ID the kids. That's why they were separated. These people are making it worse on themselves by being dishonest. If the kids wnat to go back when they grow up- Great! But no children should be raised with only one life choice. The women (and children)are clearly brainwashed- listen to their modulated "keep sweet" voices. Look at their lack of tears. Observe the lack of books/toys.They are not allowed to show emotion- it disturbs the men.

  • JND
    April 16, 2008 10:36 a.m.

    To michaelh who wrote, "I WILL NEVER SET FOOT IN TEXAS!!!": On behalf of all Texans, I say, "THANK YOU!!!"

  • Re: John
    April 16, 2008 10:42 a.m.

    "I strongly support the removal of children who are abused..."

    Don't you also support the removal of the siblings of an abused child? Or should we just leave the other children in the home until they also show signs of being abused?

    And, what if the home includes a half-dozen "wives" and a couple dozen kids with several more 13-16 y/o girls? If one of the 13 y/o sisters has already been forced into an arranged marriage, should we just wait until the others are actually abused in the same manner before we act?

    Sorry missy, it looks like your sister was sexually abused by being forced into a "spiritual" marriage with a 50 y/o pedophile, but you're apparently okay. Give us a call if that changes.

  • Lionheart
    April 16, 2008 10:35 a.m.

    To Anon 10:21. TX open up its big check book? I doubt any FLDS will sue, that would open them up to further investigation, something they really don't want. They won't be taking on the State of Texas. They will have figured out Texas is not a friendly environment. Maybe they will move to Mexico. Many polygamist did in the early 1900. Don't know how many of them survived the bandits.

  • don't mess with texas
    April 16, 2008 10:41 a.m.

    i'm curious. alotn of the bloggers on this site is critisizing texas cps for for the removal of minor children who they believe is in immenant danger. and they beleive it is their parents who are putting them in danger. this agency has the right to by law to remove these children.
    now i understand that they are having trouble locating this minor named sarah. and it should not matter if they ever find her, for the children were remove by what authories found while conducting their investigation.....remember....these are allegations of abuse....sexual abuse to children. there is vidence of several minors pregnant. an the flds are commonly know to marry children with older men...thats illegal...so is rape.incest and polygamy....RIGHTS RIGHTS RIGHT....is what i hear alot of people shouting.what about the right of a chold to live and grow up free from the abuses of predators of the likes of the flds.....if this was your neighbor you would be appalled.....i feel for the children...but this is surley what needed to be done....doing the right thing is not always popular

  • Doug S
    April 16, 2008 10:37 a.m.

    I'm just curious - why is it that when the TX authorities saw pregnant teenagers, they automatically assumed that the fathers were not also teenagers? Are the rumors spread by a couple of disaffected members with book deals sufficient to establish "probable cause" in such a case?

  • mel in lv
    April 16, 2008 10:33 a.m.

    I don't understand you people!!!! In order to conduct a thorough and complete investigation to determine who was and who wasn't abused requires the state to remove all of the children and keep them from the influences (brainwashing) they were exposed to. It has been said by some that the mothers did not abuse the children. How do you know? Were you there? If the mothers knew of the activity and allowed it to continue they were contributors. Have you not heard of the word accomplice? I also don't understand the mass sympathy for these law-breaking people. No matter what else is going on there they are breaking the law by practicing polygamy!!!! It's funny, when something horrid comes out like what is happening in Colorado City with the birth deffects ocurring from inter-marrying in another polygamous sect, I think it would be all of you people to cry , "Why didn't the government do something?" "Why didn't they do something to save these poor children?"

  • well, Daniel
    April 16, 2008 10:27 a.m.

    a sucker is born every minute

    but these gals are not even really all that good at fake crying

  • Thomas
    April 16, 2008 10:25 a.m.

    Hearing all the people argue that it's unseemly to question the legality of Texas' operation, given the sheer badness of the FLDS, I'm reminded of a scene from the play "A Man For All Seasons":

    "Roper: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law!

    More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

    Roper: I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

    More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast -- man's laws, not God's -- and if you cut them down -- and you're just the man to do it -- do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake."

    Food for thought.

  • In America
    April 16, 2008 10:23 a.m.

    Where the Consitution still stands for Law and Order.

    We don't convict prior to due proces... oh, 'cept in Utah lots of times.
    oh, and take away parental rights immediatly in Texas..

  • Good Grief
    April 16, 2008 10:23 a.m.

    What is the matter with people that think it is okay to arrest and/or detain someone based on the "POTENTIAL" they MIGHT be a victim of abuse. Don't you understand that every man, woman, and child alive is a potential victim of some crime? There is something seriously wrong with a society that condones tearing families apart with no facts of wrong-doing, just basing their actions on the potentiality that maybe, just maybe, there will be abuse.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 10:21 a.m.

    Such a waste of time, all this speculative talking.

    Recommendation: why not all shut up until evidence is presented--if there is any, that is.

    If not, TX better open up its big check book.

  • Ben M
    April 16, 2008 10:20 a.m.

    It is astonishing that the word religion is even used in all this. This so-called religion is all about men dominating and controlling women and, sadly, little girls. The mothers, brainwashed since birth, take orders from the men and let it happen. By doing so, they are as guilty as the men and I hope all of those involved end up in prison. The brave, bold men of the FLDS are hiding their faces while sending their women out to show their phony tears. It's not unbelievable that the state of Texas took action. It's unbelievable that any rational person would defend the actions in that compound.

  • Re: Red
    April 16, 2008 10:16 a.m.

    You CONVENIENTLY omitted one very important detail, all of the apparently underaged girls who were pregnant and/or are already mothers that Texas authorities discovered when they raided the compound, potential EVIDENCE, that the very same type of child sexual abuse that prompted the search was OCCURING.

    I guess, if you had been in charge, you would have simply chosen the easy way out and left all the other abused kids to fend for themselves.

  • John
    April 16, 2008 10:13 a.m.

    What happened to due process, and the necessity of showing cause or suspected guilt before children are removed? Was this done in all 416 cases? It was done in none - authorities can't even find the person originally of interest - let alone have given him due process or investigated to show cause - he wasn't even there.

    I strongly support the removal of children who are abused - but were all 416? No way. Whether you agree with polygamy or not, this act trampled on constitutional rights and requirements.

  • jpmaxwell
    April 16, 2008 10:12 a.m.

    I saw that my previous comment needs clarification in that I am infuriated with the moms thus far interviewed because they evade completely saying how old the girls have to be to be married!

  • Norma
    April 16, 2008 10:10 a.m.

    Polygamy is nothing but sexists slavery of woman and children. It's kind of like the Nazis camps as well, either way you look at, in the cult or out of the cult. I hope Texas gets the children out of this cult.

  • Medical Exams
    April 16, 2008 10:10 a.m.

    Im not FLDS, nor do I sympathize with child abusers.

    This article indicated that the medical staff has not been involved in conducted any sexual abuse exams to date. Yet, the CPS rep stated If we have evidence to warrant a sexual abuse exam, we would go forward. From this I derive that none of the children have come forward to admit sexual relations in order for the State to proceed with an exam. Unless all the victims are pregnant, conducting a sexual abuse exam is an important part of evidence.There can be clues that a child has been abused or sexually active.

    Surely the government is not going take custody of ALL these children based solely on testimony from ex-members or rumors of widespread abuse disguised as religious practice. There should be some corroborating evidence besides observing a few pregnant teens---at least direct testimony from victims. Without direct evidence, the State would have to rely on indirect evidence, which is essentially asking for custody because they believe sexual abuse is a known FLDS religious practice. I wonder how it will fly? It leaves the appellate door open. Hope the State has a stronger case than what appears.

  • jpmaxwell
    April 16, 2008 10:06 a.m.

    I have watched the mom several times on t.v. - recently this morning on "Good Morning, America." It infuriates me that every time they are asked, "how young the girls can marry." One mom yesterday was asked how she felt about a young daughter marrying a 40 or 50 year old man and she sweetly replied, she only wanted her child to be married to a good man - that is her goal. Why are the men not being interviewed - they have been in the background watching their Stepford wives being questioned. Bottom line - it is not ok for a l4 year old or even younger to have sex with a man in his 30, 40, 50, or hell knows how old!

  • jim
    April 16, 2008 10:02 a.m.

    All one has to do is read Carolyn Jessup's book, a real eye opener about this cult. Nearly all of the children have seen abuse from the so called Prophet's, including Jeff's himself. Carolyn was the only woman to escape with her children, at the time the book was written. Would just suggest anyone interested in this case to read this documentary of her life and the other wives of her Ex husband, Merrill Jessup, a cruel human being.

  • Selective outrage
    April 16, 2008 10:00 a.m.

    This isn't a left or right politics issue. Remember, both fascists and communists have jack-booted thugs that come in the night to drag away the dissenters (and steal their babies).

    I keep hearing insults about dumb "right wingers", but isn't it the left that normally has a near-neurosis about all things Orwellian? Rounded up and herded into camps? Or does that concern only apply to non-white, non-Christian victims?

  • Green Truth?
    April 16, 2008 9:58 a.m.

    "Nothing could be worse than having your children taken."

    If you're planning on handing your 13 y/o daughter to some 50 y/o man with the blessing your clergyman, I hope they come and take your children away too.

    In answer to your question, you draw the line when the POTENTIAL ABUSE, is AGAINST the LAW!

    Texas was protecting the kids from POTENTIAL SEXUAL ABUSE, which most rational people would consider AGAINST the LAW.

  • Daniel
    April 16, 2008 10:01 a.m.

    "Thank You Deseret News

    for giving us a days respite from photos and video of the three fake sobbing mothers


    I love this attitude. "The evidence we can plainly see is all false, and the evidence that has not been found and has only been alleged by people who have never had any kind of contact with it is all true." I only hope that the court system in Texas doesn't subscribe to this brand of a priori justice.

  • Franz
    April 16, 2008 10:00 a.m.

    I'm torn. I agree that the parents do have rights, and trust that in the end right will prevail. The problem is that I don't know who is right with the limited information we have available. I don't think most of you do either, but that hasn't stopped anyone from stating their opinion.
    I wonder, do these kids know who their parents are? I agree with Soldiergal: How can these moms claim to be so crushed at being separated from their children, but feel O.K. handing their 13 or 14 year-old daughters over to be "married" to older men, and their sons are kicked out to eliminate competition with the old guys.

  • jewel
    April 16, 2008 9:59 a.m.

    These kids are being brain washed and not being taught that they can have a loving one wife one husband marriage. to keep everything in there family secret. Do they get any one on one time with there parents? I wonder how many will go to college?

  • David J.
    April 16, 2008 9:52 a.m.

    Re Lionheart,
    I'm certain most of those young girls probably have to sneak around with the younger guys. However, It wouldn't matter none if they did because none of them are legally married. So who's to say who the father's of these children might be. Most of those old men are too old to produce anymore children, unless however they are all on and getting Viagra from somewhere. And with their kind of thinking, I would not doubt that in the least.

  • Re: about face!
    April 16, 2008 9:49 a.m.

    Really? From what I've read here, it's mostly liberals who are complaining about civil rights abuses.

    I'm one of your so-called neoconservatives and I fully support Texas stepping in to investigate and stop this child abuse.

    ANYBODY who argues that it would be better to leave the kids to be sexually abused by their parents and church leaders, rather than to traumatize them by removing them from potential abuse, really DOESN'T CARE about the kids.

    Some people need to get a clue!

    Institutionalized sexual abuse through forced marriages of underage girls -- promoted and condoned in a closed society -- isn't even remotely the same as several teenage girls living in the same neighborhood getting pregnant because they are sexually "active".

    All this talk about how Texas authorities acted in a Nazi-like manner in removing potentially abused kids from their homes is ridiculous. Texas is doing the best they can in a very difficult situation.

    If only a few cases of child abuse are proven, and most of the kids are safe to return to their families, so be it. If Texas is going to err, however, let it be on the side of protecting the kids from abuse.

  • Disbelief
    April 16, 2008 9:44 a.m.

    It's an embarrasement to good human nature! Texas give the children back immediately, their not your children! They belong to our Heavenly Father, not you and their intended to be with their mothers who nurture and care for them.
    Texas has gone beyond the law, beyond good!

  • thanks
    April 16, 2008 9:44 a.m.

    Thank You Deseret News

    for giving us a days respite from photos and video of the three fake sobbing mothers


  • Lionheart
    April 16, 2008 9:43 a.m.

    To anon of 9:32, great insightful post. If you are right about the moves Utah is making against this travesty, then perhaps, the cults will be disbanded. Your post may explain why the FLDS went to Texas in the first place, protect their property.

  • Independent
    April 16, 2008 9:42 a.m.

    This is kind of funny that the Texas Neoconservatives are not getting much support from the Utah Neoconservatives. I thought that all Utah Neoconservatives supported the New Neoconserative Big Government.

  • Robert T. B.
    April 16, 2008 9:40 a.m.

    I cannot see that there is anything religious about a group of men using Polygamy for their nonreligious perversions. I think it's horrible, AWFUL and EVIL that FLDS men would use such worldly conduct to control women and children. What kind of heathenishly society is this?
    I hope the government of Texas has enough courage to clean up this mess once and for all.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 9:43 a.m.

    When are the wacky right-wingers going to understand that mainstream America is not tolerant of sex cults?

  • Lionheart
    April 16, 2008 9:37 a.m.

    I'm not sure these children know who their biological mother is. After weaning a child is raised by numerous women, the young mother is returned to breeding.

  • Send the kids to boarding school
    April 16, 2008 9:41 a.m.

    Sounds like how the U.S. government rounded up the American Indians and forced the children into boarding school. Cut the childrens hair, made them not speak their native tongue, the children could not pray like they were taught. The parents were not allowed to conduct their traditional teachings. Do not worry, the U.S. government and the State of Texas know what they are doing! Look at how successful the American Indians are today! These FLDS children will be sucessful later in life due to the positive actions of these government officials.

  • anon
    April 16, 2008 9:32 a.m.

    Utah broke up the property stranglehold the FLDS leadership had. To say that Utah tolerates this is nonsense. Utah is systematically destroying the power structure which allows FLDS leadership to control the women, children, and many of the men who otherwise might not act this way if every part of their lives were not controlled. These are women with 50 yrs. of indoctrination, who will surrender their daughters to their leaders when asked. The men who do not comply have their families "reassigned" to another more righteous man. They follow orders to abandon their sons on a street corner if the boy has been deemed unworthy. They do not control their own homes, owning no property. If they choose to remain in that coercive environment, what choice do the Texas authorities have but to remove the children? If a parent's first loyalty is to an group with pseudo-governmental control over their children, the state has every right to step in and assert its control. We are a nation with individual rights. When loyalty to a group encroaches upon those rights, the state should step in to protect individual rights, especially of children.

  • Granny T.
    April 16, 2008 9:26 a.m.

    I really don't know if there has been great abuse on the Texas ranch. That certainly hasnt been proven. BUT... as an ex foster mother I bet that all little foster kids in the world wish they were so Neglected!!...They have a mom that is not drunk or drugged up that is there to feed them breakfast, lunch and dinner, to love them and tuck them into bed at night. They probably have a mom whose only career is to take care of her children. Texas get a clue, you've made a horrible mistake to do the un American thing you have done. I hope legally these people kick their booties!!

  • Matt in Tucson
    April 16, 2008 9:23 a.m.

    I listened to Michael Savage for a few minutes last night, and he was bashing this abuse of power. Are you going to say he is FLDS?

  • no religion here
    April 16, 2008 9:22 a.m.

    The FLDS compound is not a religious institution, it is a "puppy farm" designed to breed and raise future sexual victims for the predator operators.

    From their birth (not recorded, by the way) these children are isolated from society and indoctrinated to make them pliable victims of underage "marriage" (also not recorded).

    All of it out of the publis eye, births and "marriages" not even legally recorded. It is Nazi-scale in it's monstrousness.

    Society has a responsibility to intervene and rescue these children (and frankly, the pathetic parents who were raised the same way and think it is ok)


    There is a lot of collective guilt and responsibility out there for allowing this to go on so long.

  • Red
    April 16, 2008 9:20 a.m.

    Soldiergal: Technically, you're right that the women and children haven't been arrested. Nevertheless, they were -- and the children still are -- in what amounts to a minimum security prison. They get up and go to bed when the jailers say. Ditto for eating, bathing, or any other activity. They are held incommunicado, and the guns of their jailers are pointed in, to control -- not out, to protect.

    It's a well established principle that kids -- especially young kids -- are not to be interrogated without a parent present. In this case, a guardian ad litem will probably serve the purpose.

    As for "allegations (plural) of abuse:" I only know of one allegation coming from outside the Texas bureaucracy, and it doesn't involve any of the children or adults that were swept into prison by the SWAT team/snipers/armored vehicles of the Peoples' Republic of Texas.

  • Sad! and Shameful!!!
    April 16, 2008 9:18 a.m.

    As a father, this is a very sad story. Shame on Texas, and shame on the United States of America!

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 9:17 a.m.

    Texas did the right thing. It's Utah and Arizona that should be ashamed that this lifestyle has been growing over the past century.

  • about face!
    April 16, 2008 9:19 a.m.

    I think it is hilarious to see our neoconservative brothers and sisters who are so against this, that and everything else, make an about face and get liberal when it comes to this issue.

    The non-Rush O'Hannity definition of liberal:
    Live and let live.

  • To Trust me
    April 16, 2008 9:19 a.m.

    I believe it's a quote from Ronald Reagan, i.e. a Californian.

  • Brandon
    April 16, 2008 9:08 a.m.

    All the women were informed of their rights and the procedures about to occur that if a judge Thursday agreed that the children would remain in state care, they would be placed in foster homes, the officials said.
    "We believe that children who are victims of abuse or neglect, and particularly victims at the hands of their own parents, certainly are going to feel safer to tell their story when they don't have a parent there that's coaching them with how to respond," Meisner said.

    In court Monday, CPS attorneys and some of the hundreds of lawyers volunteering from across Texas to represent the children described stonewalling by the children and their mothers against attempts to get information about possible abuse.

    Children and mothers changed their names, and the women passed children back and forth, claiming to be mothers of different children every time CPS interviewed them, according to testimony.

    Now, do you see where the problem is? If not, you never will.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 8:59 a.m.

    File Rico charges aginst the FLDS church as an ongoing criminal enterprise and prosecute all adults as accessories.

  • Trust me
    April 16, 2008 8:57 a.m.

    "I'm from the government and I'm here to help you".

    Another Texan authoritarian used innuendo and gossip to invade Iraq, and we're still paying for that one.

    Is it a Texan thing?

  • Robert Allen
    April 16, 2008 8:54 a.m.

    Although it wouldn't be any more legal than taking the innocent children away from their mothers, I would feel a lot better if the Texas authorities had gone on the ranch, rounded up all the adult men, and put them in custody for questioning. This would make much more sense than leaving the perpetrators free on the ranch and removing -- indeed, punishing -- the innocent children.

    April 16, 2008 8:53 a.m.

    Please read the other article in the DN today, "Reader comments: Ex-FLDS members try to counter claims of persecution". This raid wasn't out of the blue. Warren Jeffs has been in the news for years. You can't abuse children in the name of religion. Read the responses to the other referenced article. Most of them get it.

  • Dave
    April 16, 2008 8:52 a.m.

    Where is the fall out? All we got was the Texas Point of View in this article...

  • SCR
    April 16, 2008 8:49 a.m.

    This is an absolute PR spin attempt by the over zealous State of Texas officials who are now trying to cover up for their monumental error. Sure, these kids come from a strange background, and there are likely some who have been abused. But is there a strong likelihood that every single child has been abused to the point that they can take them away from their mothers? Utterly ridiculous and very scary at the same time.

  • RELIGION is no excuse
    April 16, 2008 8:48 a.m.

    Everyone is free to believe what they will.

    Everyone is free to practice religious beliefs if they do not harm or violate the rights of others or break the law.

    The violations and abuses these children have suffered are in no way excusable in the name of religion.

    Too many posters here seem willing to allow people to get away with anything if it is excused by religion.

    Sorry, that doesn'y fly.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 8:53 a.m.

    Religious wackos, polygamy, gun-slinging-warmongers, gotta love the USA!

  • Bill
    April 16, 2008 8:42 a.m.

    Certainly 12 days is sufficient time for criminal charges to be processed against any adult guilty of harming any of the 400+ children. As of this writing no criminal charges have been filed. This would point to a lack of evidence on the part of the state of Texas.
    The foster care system in Texas is infamous. There are many times when children placed in foster care are subjected to further abuse. These children are about to be "placed" all over Texas.
    What is being run into here is small town politics; the actual facts are secondary to rumor or a good lie. If this action is being taken due to polygamy, then prosecute polygamy, leave the children alone unless wrong doing is found involving them.
    The tactics used to question these children should come into close scrutiny. Certainly more time will be required than the five minutes per child proposed by the good judge.
    Please don't blame the people of Texas with what has happened here. Some of us have known for a long time that things are amiss in Texas. It is seldom that this is brought to the attention of others.

  • A voice of reason in Texas
    April 16, 2008 8:32 a.m.

    Here are some problems with some of the arguments made here.

    1st, this is NOT like the Nazi's! The Nazi's wanted a pure race and wanted to get rid of (kill) those they didn't like or agree with. Anyone who compares the two situations are nuts. Whether they are right or wrong, the intent isn't to kill them.

    2nd, to those who compare it to rounding up all parents of sexually active teens: How can you not see a difference between a child who chooses to be sexually active (which is bad), and a child whose parents groom them and force them to be sexually active with a forced marriage (legal or "spiritual")? And... if the state does find out an adult is sexually active with a teen they DO act!

    3rd, I hesitantly support the raid but they better end up being able to prove the merits of it later (since we can't know all the facts yet.) But, the scope of the raid is troubling on many fronts.

    4th, those who think the LDS church supports the FLDS or are involved in this are ignorant or have an axe to grind.

    I'm glad I live in Texas!

  • Frustrated
    April 16, 2008 8:32 a.m.

    What are we angry about?? Kids being torn from their mothers arms?? Remember those kids don't have a naturally strong tie to 'mom', since that term is fluid. They are each raised by many women - so no one woman can make a stronger claim over any one child than another.
    All of you who scream - where's the abuse?? It's all over. Do you know about the people that Jeff's kicked out of his compound and then 're-assigned' the remaining spouse or spouses to others?? Isn't that abuse and isn't that pretty disgusting?? It's not just about one teen girl who may have made a phone call. It's about all the women and children who are so beyond comprehension, they don't even know they are being abused. Help them all.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 8:29 a.m.

    Child abuse must not be tolerated. And what do you call terrorizing little children by heavily armed SWAT teams forcing them away from their mothers,taking them to a strange location where they undergo frightening physical examinations and endless questioning like they are criminals? This experience could traumatize them far beyond anything suspected of happening to them previously. What happened to parental rights? The chilren are separated from grieving mothers before any abuse is proven and CPS says they plan to keep it that way. Have they no mercy for the frightened little ones torn from those they love and isolated from a famliar way of life? At least they haven't become burnt offerings like the children of Waco but if this governamental abuse is tolerated for FLDS children could yours be next?

  • nantz
    April 16, 2008 8:26 a.m.

    400 plus children and not one coward father stepping up, answering to the media, only brainwashed women. Are the guilty staying silent in hopes no one will wonder? If their are true sex abused children, then there has to be someone that is guilty of these crimes. Time will tell....and I can only pray for the 16 year old that alerted athorities, as she is most likely, bound and gagged in some hole in arizona or utah, were this is widely accepted!!!

  • Don't worry
    April 16, 2008 8:25 a.m.

    If there were democrats in office they probably would say, "oh the kids are fine" and leave them there.

  • What?
    April 16, 2008 8:26 a.m.

    Comparing themselves to the Jews, and the government to the Nazis? That is not even an accurate comparison at all, I don't know where that logic came from. The Jews weren't sexually abusing their children, (that I know of) and that's not why the Nazis were taking them. Even if the Jews had been saints, and wonderful parents, the Nazis would have taken them anyway. It's not like the Nazis were looking out for the children's safety. The Nazis were out for blood, the government is trying to protect innocent minors from perverted old men. The children are much better off, I don't know where that thinking came from.

  • Lionheart
    April 16, 2008 8:20 a.m.

    Texas has the guts to break up these cabals and rid their state of it. When these people get their kids back they will be on the road back to Utah where child brides and old men are tolerated. Utah get your check book ready for the welfare supported life-style of perverts.

  • Gloria K.
    April 16, 2008 8:23 a.m.

    Where is the good ol' ACLU?

  • To michaelh
    April 16, 2008 8:15 a.m.

    "Our Children are Our Children" So if you give birth to a child you should be able to abuse that child and give it away to whomever you decide at an age you decide. WOW that is spoken like a loyal FLDS member and I am sure Texas will not miss you..

  • Green Truth
    April 16, 2008 8:14 a.m.

    Any child who lives in a home where parents smoke the environment IS INHERENTLY ABUSIVE TO ALL THE CHILDREN THERE

    Any child who lives in a home where the parents are obese the environment IS INHERENTLY ABUSIVE TO ALL THE CHILDREN THERE

    Any child who lives in a home where the parents own guns the environment IS INHERENTLY ABUSIVE TO ALL THE CHILDREN THERE

    Any child who lives in a home where the parents drive too fast the environment IS INHERENTLY ABUSIVE TO ALL THE CHILDREN THERE

    Any child who lives in a home near a swimming pool, lake, pond, or canal the envoronment IS INHERENTLY ABUSIVE TO ALL THE CHILDREN THERE

    My question: Where does the government draw the line? Is it possible that the government could take our children away for any of those reasons?

    TEXAS went in and ripped children away from their parents, stormed their temple, cut off all communication, because of an "alledged" phone call about a man in another state, and the world seems OK with it.

    Nothing could be worse than having your children taken.

    TEXAS is not thinking of the children who are crying for their mothers and now with strangers!

  • I doubt
    April 16, 2008 8:17 a.m.

    I doubt that anyone is saying that the culture of the FLDS is a good one. But that is not ours (or the state of TExas) to judge. I have met famiies who don't know who their daddys were, and had siblings from many daddies. I don't agree with THAT lifestyle, but don't see that as a reason to take kids away.
    Personally? I think this is a bunch of over zelous texas 'Christian's', trying to do what THEY think is right, and not what is legal.

  • Condoners of abuse
    April 16, 2008 8:11 a.m.

    FLDS mothers may not be abusers, but they are condoners of abuse when they encourage and pressure their underage daughters to marry much older men in the name of religion. Texas is certainly justified in pulling the mothers away so that the kids can speak freely.

    I don't think we can judge Texas on their actions until they have presented their case.

  • ediddy
    April 16, 2008 8:10 a.m.

    To "truth" 7:40,
    I am afraid my zealous defense of the 4th amendment will become seen as apologism for polygamy. It is not my right to support or condemn another's religious beliefs, but I wonder, using your reference to the report from an "ex member of the FLDS group", what the opinion would be of a disgruntled ex member of the Catholic church about the Catholic church? What would be the opinion of a disgruntled ex member of the Baptist church? We ought not ever base an opinion of someone on the opinion of his enemies. What do your enemies say about you? Is it all true??

  • Ken Baguley
    April 16, 2008 8:08 a.m.

    From the information we're getting, it doesn't sound like there is a strong case...They're not disclosing all the facts, of course. If they have, the law-enforcement is in deep yogurt...

  • The Texan
    April 16, 2008 8:12 a.m.

    Headline is totally mis-leading and false. There is no 'Fallout'. Only people who whine and complain.

    The San Antonio Express ran a poll and 59% said the authorities did the right thing. 19% said they did the best they could. Only 19.2% said they did it wrong.

    They did what was needed and continue to do so. Get off their backs. This is hard enough as it is. Get on the people's backs who caused the problem. The so-called men at the FLDS leadership and ranch. Put them away where they can't abuse ever again. Come to think of it, where are the men? Hiding?

  • Hypocrites
    April 16, 2008 8:05 a.m.

    What a hypocritical nation! By the same measure of abuse the schools all across the country are abusing the children! Drugs, unmarried sex, abortion, perversion, extreme styles, immodesty, illigitimate babies, and so forth, is spread around by means of, and in, the public schools, including in Texas. It's also allowed to be taught to the children on TV and in movies by means of Hollywood, which has been allowed to "police" itself. What a messed up people America has become!

  • Texas shame!
    April 16, 2008 8:02 a.m.

    Texas has failed miserably in its handling of this situation. All these kids at least have mothers who love them and will take care of them. They have made this entire group guilty over the actions of one man, who wasn't even in the same state when the allegations were made.

  • Soldiergal
    April 16, 2008 8:03 a.m.

    The children and women were not arrested, they were placed in safe custody, just as any suspected abuse victims might be. So many of you keep comparing this to Nazi Germany... don't forget that the Nazis also laid claims to the concept of selective breeding to create a master race. How is FLDS any different than that?

    Let's also mention that these innocent young girls in "spiritual" marriages have no legal rights as spouses, so in addition to being held captive by older men, they have no legal recourse when they are abused. And their young male peers are often forced out of the community when the older men perceive them becoming threats--THAT's why they were placed in foster care, to prevent them from being abandoned later.

    What would you rather have: the state rescuing your children from this kind of life, or the church coming into your home and taking your 12 or 13 year old daughter to live with some 60 year old man as his fifth or sixth "wife"? Do you really feel this is the best environment in which to raise a child? I feel sorry for you.

  • TX Resident
    April 16, 2008 7:54 a.m.

    Until all the facts in the case are laid out and we know the truth in this matter, I am reserving judgment on which side to take up. However, right now it does look like the state went a bit too far in trying to determine if there was any wrongdoing on the compound. So far it seems that every time there is some compound with people in it, the State of Texas goes a bit too far. They did have other options, they simply choose not to use them. Now, it is up to the courts to determine facts and for us to pray for all those involved.

  • michaelh
    April 16, 2008 7:53 a.m.

    DCFS needs massive oversight and specific standards to limit their ability to run amok, we need laws immediately to protect us from this abusive organization. Our children are our children they should not be able to be seized just because some wacked out bigot thinks that we are lousy parents, especially on trumped up charges. This is the greatest miscarriage of justice in American history.

  • Truth
    April 16, 2008 7:39 a.m.

    Why are you so intent on ignoring the law and letting these people break it all they want?

  • Hum?
    April 16, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    Change the story slightly and reevaluate your stance on this issue.

    A group of Texas officials raid a poor African-American neighborhood and remove several sexually active and abused woman and girls. Then the abused victims are locked away in an abandoned military base and cut off from everyone so layers and doctors can interrogate them.

    Dont be deceived, Texas has their share of abuse victims. Why have they singled out this group?

    Who would standup for these fictitious victims and why are they not heard now? Help those in need, but safeguard the victims dignity and rights.

  • John S.
    April 16, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    Slogans like "Don't mess with Texas" remind me of the attitude of President Bush when he invaded Iraq. The fallout was severe for both sides. The same thing is going to happen here. The state and CPS is going to have egg on their face. To lie to the mothers to trick them to go on to another bus is entirely wrong. Shame on Texas CPS.

  • 350 Lawyers
    April 16, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    Texas taxpayers take note - these lawyers are going to bleed your state coffers dry over a period of many years. The FLDS will grow fat from the proceeds.

    The state authorities, though their intentions may have been good (and this is debatable), will learn that they lack the power to discard rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

  • Truth
    April 16, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    The difference here is that this FLDS community is teaching this! They are telling these girls that their only way to escape eternal damnation is to participate in polygamous marriage!

  • Professor
    April 16, 2008 7:38 a.m.

    Since children have been taken from the mothers, are we to assume all these mothers sexually abused the children taken into custody?

    According to Texas and the media it was the men involved in the sexual abusing underaged girls. Instead Texas arrested the children and mothers. Who is being abused here?

  • truth
    April 16, 2008 7:40 a.m.

    tragic, I would urge you to go to YouTube.com and watch the video called "Banking on Heaven" It's by an ex member of the FLDS group. Disturbing.

  • Herb
    April 16, 2008 7:19 a.m.

    It's long past do, lets do the exact same thing as
    Texas at Hilldale & Colorado city. What a shame
    Utah won't at least clean up Hilldale.plus the
    new compounds in Mona, and Loa...

    April 16, 2008 7:18 a.m.

    The FLDS culture is inherently harmful to the children. It is a closed society where the children are at the complete mercy of the adults with no interaction with the outside world. The
    "rulers" are predatory men determined to have multiple wives. They can't procure women from outside so turn to the female children born into the group (at a nauseatingly early age) Young males that will become a threat of competition for the available females are cast out. The adults who may not be active participants in the abuse are willing complicent or intimidated or brainwashed and will not or can not protect their own children.

    Life as it exist in the FLDS compound

    If they have not been abused yet

    These childrens' "families" are unwilling or emotionally unable to protect the children. They think their sick lifestyle is normal and healthy.

    Your sympathy for the adults is misplaced and perverse. Think about the children instead of the fake coached "sobbing" (so-called) mothers.

  • Louisiana
    April 16, 2008 7:14 a.m.

    I imagine the men of FLDS compound are only glad that they are in Texas and not Louisiana as that is the only state that has 2 men on death row for Child rape. Both the adult men and adult women in this complex are guilty of child abuse. Obviously if you have a 13 year old daughter who is consigned into marrying an older man, both the older man and the mother and father of the child are participants in child abuse. Not to mention the entire society there approves and condones of this practice. If I know my next door neighbor is sleeping with a 13 year old girl, and I don't call it in to the police, discuss it as a good thing I want my own daughter to do in the future, even though I haven't done it, my kids deserve to be taken from me before I get the chance... Save the children!

  • utah too
    April 16, 2008 7:11 a.m.

    fyi, the dcfs in utah uses the exact same tactics. they take innocent children to build cases against innocent parents. just not 416 at a time. :>

  • right is right
    April 16, 2008 7:07 a.m.

    Just like illegal immigrants, these people are breaking the law.
    In a law-of-the-land society somebody always has to be punished.
    It's the neoconservative credo.

  • Concerned Persona
    April 16, 2008 7:04 a.m.

    I support this movement wholeheartedly, dispite the downfalls the action may be facing.
    FLDS is a serverely rooted cult that obstructs the American views of justice-- giving a child, and women in general, a voice. You could plainly see that from the television interviews with live FLDS mothers. No one would come forward if Texas officials hadn't of taken action.

    I just hope the poor children who were affected have the courage to step forward and have themselves liberated for good. That would make the CPS's job much easier. . . not that this kind of emotional toll is easy to deal with anyway.

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 7:00 a.m.

    "The children are happy." Perhaps they are doing OK at the moment, but this case is more complicated than appears. Although children of drug addicts and alcoholics have connections with their parents, and issues to overcome, they still love their parents.

    You don't just take children out of the home, slap them into another environment and assume they are OK. I think there will be some huge repercussions down the road from this mass taking of children out of their homes. Does the State expect to reprogram these kids? Where is the 16-year old girl who phoned? How do we know she is a reliable source? Abuse should be stopped, but the reprogramming will be more difficult than the State thinks.
    This stormtrooper method will not bode well for Texas in the future.

  • Can't Wait
    April 16, 2008 6:58 a.m.

    It will be most interesting to see how many of the loving fathers will step forward to ID their children.

  • The Texas Way of...
    April 16, 2008 6:53 a.m.

    This must be the Texas way of handling things. Didn't President Bush come from Texas? I feel for the children. I strongly feel that something needed to be done but this is a big move on the part of CPS Texas and I feel they should have handled it differently, one case at a time not all countries,I mean all households, at once.

  • To Amen
    April 16, 2008 6:46 a.m.

    Amen you compared this to Waco. Waco raid was carried out by the ATF under control of Janet Reno and the Federal Government. It had nothing to do With Texas except like the perverts David Koresh decided to build in Texas.

  • Douglas
    April 16, 2008 6:50 a.m.

    I can't wait to see the State's argument as why the 2 dozen boys removed to foster homes are at risk. I think it goes like this: "These boys are children of parents whose religious beliefs allow marriage of girls under the age of legal consent". "Its all a patern of abuse, a culture of abuse"

    The criminalization of religious beliefs as opposed to the criminaliztion of certain behavior is the focus/goal of the CPS case. Regardless of what a religion sanctions (be it snake handling or underage marriage), being a member of that religion is no basis for establishing parental unfitness absence evidence the parent practices such behavior with the child in question.

    If an immigrant group from Africa has religious or cultural beliefs which encourage female circumcision, membership in that religion is no basis to remove the immigrants' minor female children absent proof the parent intends to practice it upon that child, and is no basis to remove minor male children even if the same parents subject their minor female children to the practice.

    But there I go trying to apply logic, common sense and that legal education to CPS and Texas, and I should know better.

  • Wells
    April 16, 2008 6:35 a.m.

    I just don't understand this. So the older men in this sect are marrying young girls.... Why is Texas not going after them? Why punish the innocent children and their mothers, who themselves may have been child brides? That this is happening in America scares the living daylights out of me.

  • Jim Baker
    April 16, 2008 6:31 a.m.

    The children are wards of the state now. Most of the parents will be jailed on trumped up charges after the apparatchiks coerce testimony from a bunch of scared, confused kids.

    The state obviously intends to build their case after the fact.

    I'd mention the Constitution but everybody would just laugh. These characters can do whatever they want, and there is nothing you can do about it.

    I suppose we should be grateful they didn't get everybody killed this time, though that has more to do with the restraint of the church members. The state showed up with SWAT teams and armored vehicles, obviously ready and willing to kill anyone who got in their way.

  • Kelton Baker
    April 16, 2008 6:20 a.m.

    The heavy-hand of government at work. Overkill if you ask me--Don't they also say everything is bigger in Texas? The State of Texas had one purported case on its hands but acted against 400+ children and their mothers and families while it was entirely possible to first adequately investigate, bring charges and isolate those individuals involved; instead, Texas went gangbusters like Janet Reno did Waco.

  • JND
    April 16, 2008 6:16 a.m.

    There sure is a lot of love for these FLDS folk, considering that the official position is that they don't have anything to do with the rest of you. And by the way, don't mess with Texas.

  • Re
    April 16, 2008 6:15 a.m.

    Tragic you stated they should only deal with the ones that have been abused. That is what CPS is trying to determine. This takes time. And you need to wake up if you think a few were molested but not all. If they will molest one they will molest all!
    And the age of the mothers is very questionable. You can read the citation on the Eldorado Success website and you will see about 75% would not give their birthdates. In order to get the facts you must separate the kids from the coaches. 6 women were brave enough to ask to be taken to a shelter and not back to the ranch. Why? Look at the middle and last names of the kids. I think you will notice the same names appear alot. That is why there are more cases of fumarase deficiency in the FLDS than the rest of the World. Inbreeding! Read about Fumarase if you don't know what it is. Utah and Arizona turned a blind eye for a 100 years. TEXAS WILL NOT! Go Texas! Don't mess with kids in Texas!!

  • What???
    April 16, 2008 6:12 a.m.

    To Tragic:

    Just because some of them will return to their roots when they are "of age", does NOT mean there is no obligation to change the lives of a few. An attempt MUST be made! Stats also show that abused spouses will return MOST of the time. The attempt MUST be made!

    To Eye Dee Ten Tee:

    Go right ahead and sit on your "aching butt" and watch this unfold! The Catholics don't have a compound where numerous children are being kept and brainwashed that the abuse they are experiencing is o.k. and the norm. It is unfortunate that all the children need to go through this. However, there is NO other way to know which ones have been abused (and that doesn't even begin to prove which ones are at risk when they get older).
    Oh, and there is a reason the ACLU has NOT stepped up in the name of "religious freedom"...they recognize that religious freedoms vs. abuse is out of their area and VERY different. The state of Texas obviously has evidence to back up their concerns!

  • Jerry
    April 16, 2008 6:05 a.m.

    Using the same logic that Texas officials use I propose that we remove the children of all muslim families. They practice polygamy and arrange for young girls to marry older men. You better be prepared for the consequences if you try that!

  • Anonymous
    April 16, 2008 6:05 a.m.

    The only verifiable abuse in this case has been by the State of Texas. This is unconscionable. How can you haul off 500 people based on a single call of abuse by one person? This isn't about child abuse, it's about the abuse of power--by the state of Texas. If this action is upheld by the courts; none of us are safe.

    However, I think if this ever gets to the U.S. supreme court, they will strike it down in an instant. There is no constitutional justification for such actions.

  • Law
    April 16, 2008 5:46 a.m.

    "We have a saying here: 'Don't mess with Texas.' I'm going to change it up and say, 'Don't mess with the children of Texas".

    And to Texas I would say, "Don't mess with the U.S. Constitution!"

  • shadow
    April 16, 2008 5:45 a.m.

    Interesting attempts to make parallels between priest abuses and this case in Texas. They are about as similar as a frog and a case of freshly poured wet cement.

    Catholic priests, and other religious leaders including Mormons, are not perfect. Some commit crimes against society (child abuse, etc.). They get reported, get caught, have a trial, and those that are guilty get punished.

    In Texas, we do not know the extent of the crimes committed by old guys, etc. We have had a complaint so we have to react. By law, we must protect those who cannot protect themselves. Reaction is by law, not by choice.

    Cults like this one do not have a good track record of obeying laws against child abuse, etc. etc.

    You can compare the Catholic/Mormon/Protestant leaders abuses and the Texas case, but you would be wrong. Frogs vs. wet cement.

    The Shadow Knows.

  • Gary Moore
    April 16, 2008 5:06 a.m.

    Obviously Marleigh Meisner's top priority is to act as an apologist for the State of Texas, rather than an advocate for the best interests of children.

  • Acts 28:22
    April 16, 2008 5:00 a.m.

    I hope this doesn't turn into an ever escalating witch-hunt....with children & families being the sacrifice for government agencies trying to cover their own rear ends.

  • How Would You Feel ?
    April 16, 2008 4:55 a.m.

    How would you feel if someone came into your small community and took all the children, young, old, based on a phone call from who knows where.

  • Melinda
    April 16, 2008 4:53 a.m.

    I don't remember ever reading in the affidavit in support of the search warrant that there ever was an allegation that ALL of the children at the ranch had been abused or were in danger of abuse. Authorities would only come that conclusion if their intent all along was to completely disband this religious group and drive it out of TX. And for those who claim that since the parents were polygamists and were committing a crime and so were unfit to parent these chilren, I would ask you to find how many children are removed from their parents' custody simply because a parent commits a crime? People shoplift, they don't lose children. People get DUIs but don't lose their children. People steal, embezzle, assault each other, take drugs, and even sell themselves as prostitutes without states taking away their children. Is polygamy, in and of itself, a greater danger to a child than these crimes? TX, in its evangelical excesses, apparently thinks so. I don't condone polygamy, but to round up ALL the children based on one allegation by an anonymous caller and an informant who never witnesses underage abuse is extreme even for TX.

  • This how Nazis did it in Germany
    April 16, 2008 4:13 a.m.

    No one is going to stick up for men who are guilty of the alleged abuses in this situation, if proven in a fair an unbiased trial. But consider the next group could be a different and larger group with ties to the Mormon religion, and soon "those crazy Mormons themselves" and then "kooky Christians and religious people" will have to worry about allegations being the only requirement for Gestapo like state agencies deciding lack of due process being applied to your group because many in the country consider you weird and heard of horrible things happening within your familes - you are a comparatively small group of people and not the majority so what rights will you have? All someone has to do is phone in an anonymous lie and have your children ripped away from you. Anyone who believes there was a correct principle in the American concept should take notice of this battle against all of our liberties. The concept of the General public believing this horrible Nazi spokewoman's woman's propaganda that the little cildren are so much happier and "Smiling" and "playing" now that they have had their ties severed with their parents is sickening.

  • I Hope
    April 16, 2008 3:49 a.m.

    I hope that every instance of Texas taking a child away from parents that weren't abusing them is legally returned to the state ten-fold. This is disgusting. Texas had better have some solid evidence for what they are doing, or it will futher entrench the state's ability to meddle in family affairs in every state. Remove abused children from abusive homes, yes. DO NOT take 416 children en masse away from otherwise loving parents - this is wrong, and I'm surprised there is not more public outcry. Let's identify children who have been abused and prosecute men who marry underage women. Leave everyone else alone.

  • Chris
    April 16, 2008 3:23 a.m.

    I will never move to Texas. They should be ashamed of themselves. Comparisions to Nazi's and sick communists are in order here.

  • Selective Outrage?
    April 16, 2008 2:48 a.m.

    I wonder if the same people that are so pleased with the actions of the Texas authorities would be as pleased with them if the raids were done on suspected abortionist offices in an effort to find underage girls that have had abortions. The ACLU would be screaming bloody murder, for sure, even though the evidence would show those girls would have suffered rape and abuse under the law. There is some easy pickings for you, Ms. Meisner. The proof is in those doctors offices just waiting for you. Or do Texas doctors get special privacy rights that religious sects don't?

  • MikeFM
    April 16, 2008 2:47 a.m.

    Until recently you could get married in Texas, with parental consent, from age 14. Now it's been bumped up to 16. That'd imply that possibly no underage girls were married.

    IMO polygamy should not be against the law - it's crazy that you can sleep with as many people as you want but if you marry them then it's a crime. Maybe we should start arresting people who have affairs or pre-msrital sex. How can they even claim any of these people are polygamists if they're not legally married to more than one person? Saying you are married does not make you married in fact. We never hear about any other groups that practice polygamy but the LDS are perfectly fine targets.

    It seems highly unlikely that all of these children were abused and the evidence seems altogether weak. Do they even know the original complaint was authentic? This seems like religious persecution to me. If my neighbor abuses his children, and we live in the same apartment complex and go to the same church, will you also take my children? This entire situation is wrong. At least it wasn't quite another Waco.

  • Robert
    April 16, 2008 2:37 a.m.

    The government is the biggest abuser of children. Do they really think the MOTHERS were abusing the children? I think not. Comments like 'don't mess with Texas' just show what kind of arrogance is involved here.

  • Amen part 2
    April 16, 2008 2:19 a.m.

    I have no problem with them going after a couple bad apples when evidence has presented itself first; I do have a problem with them assuming an entire group of people is all the same and that nobody deserves to raise their own children without even asking any questions first. What happened about innocent until proven guilty? Perhaps Texans can start their own country where they abolish freedom & the bill of rights, but this should not go on while they are still part of the United States of AMERICA!

  • Amen!
    April 16, 2008 2:18 a.m.

    First Waco and Now FLDS. Sounds like Texans just like to charge into things with their guns blazing, act first then ask questions later. Yeah, Lets just take the kids away from all Americans, get them in a foster home and then afterwards find out who really misses their parents vs. who felt like they were abused! That makes Sense! Who would not want to have their kids participate in this great test to make sure we are all perfect parents according to the standards of a few? Better yet, lets just do that with the Judges and law enforcement in Texas and then see if they still think they acted prudently in this blatant attack against Freedom, due process and parents rights.

  • Eye Dee Ten Tee
    April 16, 2008 1:36 a.m.

    Ooookay. They illeagaly take away cell phones to prevent witness tampering, now remove the parents so CPS can coach the children into saying they were abused? Don't mess with Texas' children my aching butt. That is exactly what they are doing.
    Why doesn't Texas CPS remove all Catholic children because there are a few claims of pedophilic priests? They would be following the same logic used to justify this travesty.
    I'm still waiting for the ACLU to decide if this attack on religious freedom, unlawful search and seizure, ignoring habeus corpus and innocent until proven guilty is more important than keeping Bibles 500 feet away from Texas schools.

  • tragic
    April 16, 2008 12:58 a.m.

    i will be the first to say that if children are abused...something needs to be done...and if there are under age girls married ..with children deal with THOSE cases..but i do not belive that all 416 kids were abused on that ranch...i have read post of people saying their polygamist ,theyve commited a crime they do not deserve there children..how do u figure that? this case has so many aspects to it...and i believe will end badly for all involved..these ad litems will be more on the side of cps..no matter what the children want..i believe SOME of these people are being treated unfairly..they are already talking about terminating parental rights...how can they do this so soon? we will see this go all the way to supreme court..{and no matter what they do if they keep these children in foster care most of the children will return to parents or family when they turn of age anyway}

  • Lay-Off !!!
    April 16, 2008 12:54 a.m.

    Hey! Texas! Leave these kids alone!

  • Carl
    April 16, 2008 12:13 a.m.

    Shame on Texas.