News Ticker

Utah Judge Backtracks After Ordering Lesbian Couple to Give Up Child

Well, that was quick.Juvenile Court Judge Scott Johansen is trying to turn back time after he told foster parents Beckie Peirce and April Hoagland that their new daughter would be taken away from them and placed with a heterosexual couple because it was in the best interest of the child.

Well, that was quick.

Juvenile Court Judge Scott Johansen is trying to turn back time after he told foster parents Beckie Peirce and April Hoagland that their new daughter would be taken away from them and placed with a heterosexual couple because it was in the best interest of the child.

Beckie Peirce (left) and April Hoagland

Documents released Friday… show the judge has crossed out statements in his original order about the problems children suffer when raised by same-sex parents, and set a Dec. 4 hearing to determine what will be best for the girl.

“Essentially we’ve bought some time,” Utah Division of Child and Family Services spokeswoman Ashley Sumner said Friday. “We’ll have to see at the permanency hearing on Dec. 4 what the next steps will be.”

The fight isn’t over yet. While Johansen crossed out the more problematic words in his order, there’s no evidence that his views have changed. This is damage control for himself, nothing more. We’ll see in a few weeks if his heart and brain follow suit.

At least Utah’s GOP governor said something sensible in the face of all this:

Gov. Gary R. Herbert, a Republican, weighed in on the issue Thursday, saying that he was “a little puzzled” by the judge’s action. “He may not like the law,” the governor said, “but he should follow the law.”

The one bright note in all this is that people are paying attention to this case, so Johansen may be less likely to use debunked research to justify his bigotry.

In the spotlight

For Certain Christians, Lying for Jesus is Justified in the Abortion Wars

Leviticus 19:11 makes clear: "Ye shall not steal, neither deal falsely, neither lie one to another."There's quite a bit of the Bible that conservative Christian activists tend to leave out, but Biblical prohibitions against lying are routinely given short shrift by those intent on seeing God's will done on Earth. We don't have to look far for examples of it -- from Christians arguing that LGBT people are predators to politicians pretending that being gay is a choice, these lies are common.The Washington Post has a good look at another popular outlet for faith-based lying: the abortion debate, and the notoriously deceptive idea of "crisis pregnancy centers." Reporter Petula Dvorak examines the work of one Virginia activist, Pat Lohman, in particular.shutterstock_296153609
[MORE]

Leave a comment