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State Assembly, Planned Parenthood Won't Fight Calif. Child Marriage

State Assembly, Planned Parenthood  Won't Fight Calif. Child Marriage
State Sens. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, left, and Mike McGuire, D-Healdsburg, confer during the Senate session, in May of this year, in Sacramento, Calif. Lawmakers were on a short deadline to have their bills passed out of the House of origination. (Rich Pedroncelli/AP)

By Wednesday, 12 July 2017 09:58 AM Current | Bio | Archive

California is that rare state where a young woman must be 18 before she can legally consent to have sex, but she can marry at any age with permission from her parents and a judge’s order.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports Calif. Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, thought that was contradictory so he set about to reconcile the law. I’m happy to report his idea of reconciling matched mine. He wanted to prohibit child marriage.

Hill’s bill would have "set a strict line at age 18." Incredibly enough he ran into a buzzsaw of opposition from, you guessed it — the left. Planned Parenthood — which must view child brides as a potential profit center — opposed the bill, along with some of the other usual suspects including the ACLU.

The criminal’s lobby spokesman, Phyllida Burlingame, said her organization opposed the bill because the ACLU thought the "focus of efforts should be on abusive and coerced relationships, regardless of marital status." Since California already has quite of bit of law directed at discouraging domestic violence and abuse, her opposition to Hill’s bill just seems to be another example of the ACLU’s reflexive opposition to supporting cultural norms.

Allies of the bill estimate California "sees about 3,000 marriages per year that include a minor." That figure actually appears low. U.S. Census data reports approximately five out of every 1,000 teenagers between the ages of 15 and 17 are married. California, as of 2015, had 1,549,792 teenagers between those ages so the five per 1,000 calculation would produce 7,750 child brides or grooms in the state.

Other opponents say marriage is a fundamental right and some juveniles not only marry willingly "but benefit from the choice." (Funny how you never heard this argument from the left with regard to gun ownership.)

Opposition on the left wasn’t total. The Feminist Majority was disappointed by efforts to defeat the bill, "Initially it was a nice, simple, bright line — either you’re 18 or not. Like a tanning bed or voting, you can’t get a waiver from your parents," said Sarah Bradshaw. "We’re hoping that people in the assembly will put teeth back in it."

After the opposition finished the age restriction was removed in its entirety. Instead prospective child brides are treated to a personal, private interview with a judge who will make the final ruling as to the teen’s eligibility for matrimony.

Hill, who evidently wants to get along with fellow Democrats, says his diluted bill is a positive step. I say it’s a travesty the California State Assembly refused to fight Planned Parenthood and the ACLU to save teenaged girls.

Michael Reagan, the eldest son of President Reagan, is a Newsmax TV analyst. A syndicated columnist and author, he chairs The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Michael is an in-demand speaker with Premiere speaker’s bureau. Read more reports from Michael Reagan — Go Here Now.

© Mike Reagan

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It’s a travesty the California State Assembly refused to fight Planned Parenthood and the ACLU to save teenaged girls.
aclu, democrats, left
Wednesday, 12 July 2017 09:58 AM
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