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ACLU Puts Its Two Cents Into The Case of Children Taken From FLDS Compound

By Can Tran     Apr 20, 2008 in World
In the midst of what has going on in regards to the 416 children taken from the ranch in El Dorado, Texas, used as a compound for the FLDS, founded by Warren Jeffs, the American Civil Liberties Union has joined in on the case.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union’s (ACLU) Texas branch, the 416 children might have had their fundamental rights violated. On the night of Friday, April 18, Judge Barbara Walther ruled that the 416 children would be kept in state custody and would soon be placed into foster care. The ACLU said that the children’s rights were violated when the ranch was raided. However, the ACLU did not give any specific on how the authorities violated the rights of the 416 children taken from the compound.
This case involving the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) has been on the news for quite awhile. The court battle was indeed tiring as all 416 children had to have representation as required by law. In the ruling, Judge Walther explained that she found enough evidence to keep the children under custody of the state. Now, the ACLU has decided to jump into the fray.
Terri Burke, the executive director of the Texas branch of the ACLU, said that they question if the ruling properly protects the rights of both the children and their mothers.
In the regard to the children and their mothers, Angie Voss, a supervisor with Child Protection Services inspected the compound. Voss had given testimony that she had come across several pregnant teenagers. She explained that the girls believed that it was acceptable for them to marry a man of any age. To the FLDS, this is known as a “spiritual marriage.”
Bruce Perry, the child psychiatrist who interviewed the girls, said that they are too young and not mature enough for sexual relationships let alone marriage.
Days before, Flora Jessop, a former sect member gave her story on how the children have been brainwashed. Currently, she works in rescuing women and children from the FLDS. Before that, Jessop had turned to drugs and alcohol. She explained that she feared for her life after escaping from one compound in Arizona.
After the raid back on April 4, there have been all sorts of headlines. It looks as this story will remain in the headlines as the ACLU is now putting its two cents into the matter.
As this situation continues to unfold, we are concerned that the constitutional rights that all Americans rely upon and cherish – that we are secure in our homes, that we ma worship as we please and hold our places of worship sacred, and that we may be with our children absent evidence of imminent danger – have been threatened,” Burke explained.
The FDLS was formed by those that split off from mainstream Mormonism. The reason being, the mainstream Mormon group did away with polygamy. The FLDS practices polygamy. To the members of the FLDS, polygamy is deemed to be the way to the highest path of Heaven.
The founder of the FLDS, Warren Jeffs is serving time in prison after a 2007 conviction on numerous charges. I had also written an article as it was revealed that the Pentagon gave contracts to companies with ties to the FLDS.
In the case of the ACLU, the group has yet to specifically state what rights of the children were violated during the April 4 raid.
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