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COURT RULES state wrong to remove polygamist sect children

By Ann Tatko-Peterson
Thursday, May 22nd, 2008 at 11:36 am in Other.

sectAn appeals court in Texas has ruled that child welfare officials had no right to remove the children of 48 mothers from a polygamist sect in April. The state took custody of 464 children after allegations of sexual abuse surfaced. The court essentially has ruled that the children were not in immediate danger and that a court hearing should have been held before removing them from the sect’s Texas ranch. (Read more about the story here.) It’s unclear when or if the children will be returned to their mothers.

The startling number of underage mothers in the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has turned this into a sensationalized story. The moms, often soft-spoken and evasive, pleaded for the return of their children on national television. Pundits on both sides of the issue weighed in. And no matter how this situation turns out, it’s hard to believe anyone can really come out a winner. What do you think — is polygamy, even with underage girls, a religious right or a call for action to remove these underage girls from the sect?

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