The FLDS polygamy and statutory rape farm

FLDS women at the court houseHaven’t blogged anything about this, so this is just a quick hit. There’s lots of blogging about this around.


Texas polygamist sect is accused of indoctrinating girls

SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) — Girls in the west Texas polygamous sect enter into underage marriages without resistance because they are ruthlessly indoctrinated from birth to believe disobedience will lead to their damnation, experts for the state testified Friday at a custody hearing for 416 youngsters.

Walsh [a defence witness for the parents] disputed that young girls have no say in who they marry.

“Basically, they’re into match-making,” he said of the sect, adding that girls who have refused matches have not been expelled.

I believe the girls are given a real choice. Girls have successfully said, ‘No, this is not a good match for me,’ and they remained in good standing,” he said.

Perry [a prosecution witness and expert on cults] testified that the girls he interviewed said they freely chose to marry young. But he said those choices were based on lessons drilled into them from birth. (emphasis added)

As commentor Ema said at Pandagon:

Funny how the issue of choice and the presumption of informed consent only come up when the decision has to do with marriage and statutory rape, but never when the decision is about terminating a pregnancy.

Tangent: notice how in this community where the women wear ultra-feminine dress there appears to be no need to pinkify them?

Categories: culture wars, gender & feminism, law & order, religion, social justice

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10 replies

  1. I read somewhere that the dresses are colour coded to age…

  2. “Ultra-feminine” wouldn’t be thought of as bad in a better world. When “too girly” is seen as a negative, you know there’s a problem.
    I agree with Emma – Marriage is a choice but not reproductive freedom?

  3. And has some order gone out from Troll Central to swarm almost every blog where anyone calls this institutional rape? Here’s a typical one from ginmar’s place:

    just because these families are different from ours, doesn’t give us the right to bang on their doors. their view marriage is different from most of ours. they all love each other, and how is there lifestyle effecting us?
    Isn’t this what the gay marriage proponents always tell us?

    I’ve seen variations of this “argument” all over the place.
    Because the girls are legally under the age of consent, arseholes. Statutory rape is against the law. Same-sex intercourse between consenting adults is not against the law. It really is a fucking simple concept.

  4. Perhaps they don’t expell the girls for disobedience because they need a skewed gender ratio so that the men can have multiple wives? duh. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t subjected to other forms of “correction.”

  5. An excellent post discussing the Yearning For Zion ranch/farm and the FLDS, with lots of links: The Handmaid’s Tale
    I read somewhere else that the underage “marriages” is a relatively recent practice within the FLDS. Apparently originally the marriages generally only happened when the women were actually 18 or over, but in the last ailing years of the Prophet Rulon Jeffs the ages started moving younger, and his son Wayne Jeffs kept that process trending younger still once he took over as Prophet.
    So it took less than two generations for an authoritarian isolationist fundamentalist group to move from requiring rigorous submission of adult women to actively fostering the statutory rape of girls. It’s a nasty illustration of the old saying of how “absolute power corrupts absolutely”.

  6. It’s coming back to bite the children in other ways, too.
    Helen’s last blog post..New! Another plug-in for your blog

  7. In a spectacular example of women/girls and children being punished for their own abuse, the State’s initial impulse was to separate the nursing infants from their mothers in foster care.
    Only after significant outcry and advocacy work did the court yesterday decide to allow babies under 12 months to remain with their mothers. Mothers of toddlers and older children may still be separated.
    The FLDS Breastmilk Blog is covering this side of the issue.
    And yet, people will still pointedly and accusatorily wonder why the girls don’t run away and speak out.

  8. New info: apparently half of all the girls aged between 14 and 17 who were taken in to custody are either currently pregnant or already have children.
    And as Lauredhel’s latest post shows, the judge is an arsehat who apparently thinks that feminists want all babies weaned onto formula at 6 weeks so that they can go back to work, instead of the actuality that feminists generally would prefer workplaces to be more family-friendly generally and nursing-friendly in particular.


  1. Judge-endorsed abuse by protective services: more on the FLDS mother-child foster separation issue at Hoyden About Town
  2. Texas Polygamist Sect at Life on Snow Hill
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