Archive for the ‘Comfort FLDS children’ Category

My Camera Editorial Advisory Board comment published on April 19, 2008, in response to the Camera’s question: More than 400 children were taken from a Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints ranch in Texas by armed officers with a warrant seeking an underage girl who had alleged she was being abused by her 50-year-old husband. Officials separated more than 100 children over 5 years old from their mothers, who returned to the compound. Hundreds of younger children remain off-site with their mothers. Do you think Texas officials overreacted in the raid, and are they justified in keeping the children away from their mothers?

If you look at the situation in Texas as a call from one underage girl alleging abuse from her 50-year-old husband, Texas officials overreacted by bringing out officers armed in SWAT gear to rescue her. However, the FLDS live much differently than others in their walled-off community. In those ways, Texas officials compared them to the Branch Davidians. Since Davidians fought back with firepower and would rather have been taken dead rather than alive, I do not fault officers for coming prepared for trouble. I credit the FLDS leaders for not escalating the confrontation.

I agree with the top priority Texas officials had for entering the FLDS ranch — concern for one child and any others in danger. By Texas law, they removed all the children on the ranch. Life there seemed so intermingled, all children seemed at risk. Keeping these children away from their mothers as well as their fathers until proven safe to return them is wise.

Nevertheless, I urge Texas officials to cause as little harm as possible themselves in their protective services processes and give the children as much comfort as possible. It’s unfortunate but also a protective that foster-care certification takes time. No matter how well-meaning an individual or group may be, they cannot try to step in the legal processes.

Source: Daily Camera

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