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Wednesday, September 28, 2005

More on Prop 73

If you haven't yet read my first post on Prop 73, please do so here.

The "Campaign for Teen Safety" organization opposed to Prop 73. But it is not just the name that is misleading. On their blog, they have "one teenager's story". You can read it for yourself, but in summary the entry says this:

The teenager writing the blog post has a friend who once got a B in a class at school. When the friend brought the report card home, her parents started yelling at her and told her to get out of the house. The friend lived at the blog-writer's house for a couple weeks and showed the bruises on her arm from when "her mother had grabbed her and shaken her while screaming. " Three months later, the friend is pregnant. The blog-writer and the blog-writer's mom had the friend go to Planned Parenthood and have an abortion.

The entry says that "All of this would have been illegal under Proposition 73." It is true that not notifying the parents would be illegal, but once the parents have been notified, it would be legal for the friend to do everything else that she did. Only parental notification is needed, not consent.

The next paragraph states "Without Proposition 73, Kathy [the friend] was able to make a decision with the assistance of a responsible adult, access safe, confidential medical care and counseling, and leave the medical office with the tools to protect herself in the future. She also, with the help of my mom, Planned Parenthood and our school counselors, sought joint counseling with her parents to remedy her situation at home. With Proposition 73, Kathy would have been forced to tell her parents - the very same parents who kicked her out of the house with bruises for getting a B on her report card."

This is false. Kathy herself would not have to tell her parents anything. In fact, as I have said before, Prop 73 allows a minor to petition the juvenile court for a waiver. This proceeding is confidential and usually informal and in the judges' private chambers. If notifying her parents is not in her best interests, she will not have to.

More from the blog: "If she had felt unsafe, Prop 73 opponents say she could have achieved a judicial bypass - but in a town as small as mine, with her father as a lawyer, her case wouldn't have remained confidential and she would have undoubtedly looked for another alternative. She would have avoided legal clinics and doctors, avoided talking frankly and openly with a responsible adult, would have delayed access to medical care and she would have been terrified and alone the entire time. The way I see it, Proposition 73 does nothing to keep teens safe - instead, it puts teens from every socioeconomic class, every race, every neighborhood in every city in California in serious danger."

Although I don't know how small the town mentioned is, the proceedings would in no way involve the lawyer father. I think that it is unfair to assume that just because the father is a lawyer, it would not be kept confidential. At the proceedings, an appointed guardian will assist the girl and also this particular girl could still have had the "help" of the blog-writer's mom, so that "alone and terrified" part is false as well.

So Prop 73 does not endanger the girl. But does it protect further?

In Prop 73, as part of a waiver proceeding, the court must report evidence of abuse to the child protection agency. If Prop 73 was not implemented, the abuse would most likely continue to go unreported. Also, abortion facilities provide a secret, tax-payer funded abortion and they rarely report evidence of statutory rape, sexual abuse or molestation. Think about it. If they suspect abuse and don't tell, the abuse is likely to happen again. And in the cases of rape and other sexual abuse, this will most likely result in more business for them.

Another interesting thing that I just heard today is that minors cannot be sentenced to death because it is believed that they have poor or under-developed judgment. Yet, in our state, they can decide to kill their child.

All in all, the No on Prop 73 organization uses ignorance to convince people to vote the way that they want them to. (I personally think that they just had to revert to the ole' liberal "plan B": make something up that sounds good and hope that no one notices the truth.) However, I hope that all of you who are old enough to vote really research this topic.
So, here is the "No on Proposition 73" website. Here is the "Yes on 73" website and here is the text of the proposition itself.

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