Friday, April 3, 2009

Justices of the Texas Supreme Court:

The Texas Supreme Court just struck a blow at the foundation of civilized society - the incest taboo. On April 28, 2008, the Court overturned a Texas Department of Family and Protective Services finding that removed 130 children from a religious cult compound set up by a convicted sexual abuser. The court found that child protective authorities had not shown a sufficient danger to prohibit the children residing with their parents at the “Yearn for Zion” facility founded by Warren Jeffs, “prophet” and leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS). The Court argued that there were a number of options (counseling, etc.) available to protective services before separation could be justified.

Please note that the FLDS cult is not associated with the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints (commonly known as the Mormon Church). FLDS members would be subject to automatic excommunication from the Mormon Church due to their participation in polygamy.

Based on a request for help from the FLDS facility, Texas protective services workers found that forced marriage of adolescent girls 17 and under to adult males’ decades older was an accepted practice. There was strong concern about incestuous combinations in these polygamous "spiritual" marriages. As a result, a lower court ordered DNA tests for all involved at the cult's Texas compound. There were other findings of grave concern according to the head of family and protective services Carey Cockerell. These included possible sexual abuse of young boys.

The 130 children ordered returned to their parents are part of a larger group of 467 children removed by child protective authorities. The 130 will return to the Texas FLDS compound. The ruling is a significant step in hastening their removal from foster care arranged by child protective authorities and a reunion with parents living in the cult compound.....

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