As I looked at the jury I understood instantly what had happened. The men all looked pissed and tired, while the women looked like they had been through Hell. They had puffy eyes, some tears, and a mostly drawn exhausted demeanor.
They looked like they had really fought. I felt bad for them.
As soon as I saw the Rangers let one local reporter out the door, I bolted, too, for the rental car and my cell phone.
I didn't call a reporter. It is not my job to bring anyone the news first. That is the media's job. It is also not my job to provide you with the legal analysis. My job as an activist and an advocate is to provide you with the human perspective.
My first information obligation is to the people who have been victimized, raped and abused by the polygamists culture.
My call was to Flora Jessop. She, more than anyone else, deserved to be the first to know. She escaped when she was a child, got to Utah CPS, was called a liar and sent back for more abuse, at the hands of women this time. Nobody ever listened to her. They called her a "crazy liar" from the start.
Then of course, I have a board to report to. These people need to be the first people I give information to.
I am here as a human rights advocate and anti-polygamy activist to give you the human perspective on this sentence.
For the community members who testified that Mr. Jessop was a hard worker, a good father and honest business man, because you enjoyed a profitable business deal with him, G-d help your souls.
For the witness who testified that you would trust your own children to Mr. Jessop's care, G-d forgive you for your ignorance. Mr. Jessop is never going to be a danger to your children. Mr. Jessop's faith requires him to think of your children as corrupt, defiled, impure and definitely not "delightfully whitesome" enough.
Mr. Jessop is only a danger to little girls raised in his cult, behind the gates of the YFZ. They are all taught from birth to believe they must "Keep Sweet" and be completely obedient, or they will burn forever in Hell.
The boys are taught the very same thing. Then when they reach adolescence they are systematically driven from the city. The mothers allow this to happen to their sons. Some mothers, on their husband or the prophet's command have driven their sons away from home and dumped them personally, to demonstrate their perfect obedience.
Mr. Jessops children are much more likely to hurt your children someday. Once they start dumping the boys and driving them away, then you will have to worry about your children.
These boys are damaged beyond description, ask Brent Jeffs.
I hope Scleicher and Tom Green County don't ever have this kind of problem. One lost boy in Utah demanded his girlfriend have sex with him at a party in front of all his friends. When she refused, he shot her in the head and did it anyway. His defense? He had no concept that females were ever allowed to refuse to obey a male. Shariah law is a nice fit with that. Muslim Shariah law requires a woman to have four male witnesses if she is raped, otherwise it is her fault and she is beaten for being raped.
If a Shariah law court has witnesses, two women count as one man. No one woman can ever testify. She doesn't count alone.
If you decriminalize polygamy by handing out anything but severe penalties for the practice, our Muslim sisters in Houston, Dallas and Austin are going to start coming home to even more extra wives. After all, if you won't prosecute the nice cheese making white folks who live on a compound for the human right's crime, how can you possibly enforce the law inside your major cities?
The eyes of Texas should now be moving to the first full blown Bigamy trial.
It's time to stand up for traditional marriage, all the way around. If you complain about gay marriage, and in any way support these criminals in their right to keep concubines, especially under any freedom of religion argument, then you are a hypocrite and don't really believe in traditional marriage but are only interested in discriminating against people for their sexual preferences.
You either support the protection of traditional marriage or you don't. You can't pick and choose gender roles for exceptions. Polygamists rape little girls. It's what they do. It's what they have to do to keep them in it. The female children must be saddled with offspring before they are developmentally mature enough to make their own decisions. Otherwise, too many women would leave before submitting to the abuse of concubinage.
She must believe it is the only means to her salvation, a refusal would mean burning in eternal Hell, or that she has no right to complain about the abuse and submits out of fear.
No matter how you slice it, this makes victims.
Abuse is not a religion.
To those of the jury who fought so hard, "thank you".