Someone said about Eastern Europe during the 1940s "They came for the Jews and I said nothing because I wasn't a Jew, then they came for the Gypsies and I said nothing because I wasn't a Gypsy, then they came for the Poles and I said nothing because I wasn't a Pole then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out."
This past week we have watched as nothing short of religious persecution has played out on television and in the desert lands of Texas.
Oh it has been very well reported and documented as the protection of children but it is nothing more than religious persecution. For these people at the FLDS compound in Texas the constitution has been suspended; just as the constitution was suspended in Missouri and Illinois in the 1840s for the Mormons.
I am not a proponent of polygamy I personally feel that it is a strange and impractical lifestyle that is almost impossible to live, and certainly a lifestyle that I would not want for myself or for my children.
I am amazed by the women both young and old, allowing themselves to dress, act and submit their lives to the dictatorial practices that are a part of the more fundamental sects like the one in Texas. But, it is their belief and their religion.
I am equally amazed and taken aback by the lifestyle that the Muslim women have or endure. I find their dress abhorrent and the fact that they too allow every act of their lives to be dictated by the men in their lives, so much so that in the more strict sects they never go out in public without the accompaniment of a male relative. This is not a lifestyle I would want for myself or my family members. But, it is their belief and their religion. I believe in freedom of religion.
Let's imagine what might happen if someone called Child Protective Services and said that they were 16 years old and being forced to marry an older man in a Muslim community. Do you think that this community would be raided and all of the children taken? Do you think that the rights of the parents of these Muslim children would be denied? I can tell you for sure this would not happen because the international cry of human rights violations would be so loud it would completely overwhelm the story.
When someone in Ferron calls Child Protective Services and reports a problem of child abuse every child in Ferron is not taken into custody, not even every child on the block and most times not even every child in the house.
We either have a constitution that guarantees us certain freedoms or we don't. If the answer is we don't then we need to think about the day when the Mormon temples may be breached because someone says that something suspicious is going on in them. We need to look to the day when the constitution will be suspended for us because of something someone finds unusual or uncomfortable about our religion. When and if this happens I don't want to be the one that says "when they came for me there was no one left to speak out.