Monday, April 28, 2008

Justified Separation?

My heart goes out to the mothers whose children were taken away from them from the recent raid on the polygamist sect ranch in Texas. Although those women live within a group of 'sisterhood' who may offer a shoulder to cry on in these type of situations, nothing can ever calm the mental anguish of each of them for seeing their children being chaperoned away in buses to unknown locations and fostering houses.

Although I am educated and know all my rights as a woman, I cannot help but try to understand the restraints placed on these women who were born and raised within the sect. The authorities are extremely harsh on them when all their lives, they only have their children to claim as their own while sharing their husbands with multiple others. And to have their flesh and blood taken away for the one reason that an anonymous phonecall was made by one abused individual and without any concrete proof of abusive behavior on their parts just doesn't make sense.

This type of polygamist sect has existed long enough and I do not condone to any inactions by the authorities in the name of freedom of religion and belief. However, the enforcement of any laws should be done in a more planned and appropriate way, especially when children are involved and multiple families are affected. The authorities' reason for this raid is that there is a fear and possibility that the children, specifically girls are abused and forced into marriages to older men. Almost 400 children are taken and so far, no charges are made against any of the men of the sect while the mothers scrambled from court hearings to housing compounds, just for the chance to reunite with their children again. Have we forgotten that these mothers are also victims themselves, ostracized by some because of their obligatory way of life which has been primarily determined and set by men? They may already have no dreams nor future being born within the sect and taking their children away just makes their miserable lives more unbearable.

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