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Anti-trans Christian lawmaker says it's okay for 12-year-olds to get married
So much for protecting the children...
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Missouri State Sen. Mike Moon defended child marriage during a debate about how gender-affirming surgeries would hurt kids.
Moon is a co-sponsor of a bill that would ban health care providers from performing transition-related surgeries on minors. They also wouldn’t be able to prescribe hormones or puberty-blocking drugs to children. To be clear, hormone therapy and puberty-blocking drugs have immense value for trans kids and aren’t prescribed on whims. Moon’s bill would override the expert opinions of healthcare providers, all for the purpose of harming trans kids. It’s a bill that would legislate needless cruelty.
That’s the point State Rep. Peter Meredith wanted to make on Tuesday, during a committee hearing. He pointed out that Moon didn’t really care about protecting children because he was on record saying kids as young as 12 should be allowed to get married to an adult (with the approval of the kid’s parents), effectively sanctioning child rape.
Moon’s response? Sure, what’s wrong with that?
"I've heard you talk about parents' rights to raise their kids how they want. In fact, I just double checked. You voted no on making it illegal for kids to be married to adults at the age of 12. If their parents consented to it, you said actually, that should be the law because it's the parents right and the kids right to decide what's best for them. To be raped by an adult," Meredith said.
In response Moon said that he knows someone married at 12 and "they are still married."
That… is a horrible answer.
Just because a child doesn’t seek a divorce isn’t a defense of child marriage unless you’re a conservative Christian looking to justify child rape.
Moon later clarified that the 12-year-old in question “impregnated a minor of similar age.” Their parents said they should get married and they “are still married today.” So this was not a marriage between a child and an adult.
That… is also a horrible answer.
Taking an impregnated middle-schooler and coercing her into getting married—at an age when both of them barely understand how their own bodies work—isn’t a love story. It’s Purity Culture run amok. Just because both kids may feel trapped in their marriage today isn’t a cause for celebration either. They didn’t have much of a childhood. They barely had time to develop crushes. They probably haven’t gone through a break-up. Why should we assume they have the maturity to understand their options as wedded adults?
While you think about that, realize that Missouri bans divorces from being finalized if a woman (or girl) is pregnant.
It’s deeply ironic that Moon believes a 12-year-old girl is capable of getting married (and having children!) but a 16-year-old trans girl should have no say in getting gender-affirming care after seeing a doctor.
The most damning aspect of this story is that Moon’s comment didn’t come out of nowhere. As Meredith alluded to, Moon first made his beliefs known on this matter in 2018, when there was a bill that would have raised the age of marriage from 15 to 16 and require parental permission for those older teens. (Let’s all admit it’s great that they wanted to amend the law to prevent 15-year-olds from getting married, but it’s truly messed up that the bill would still have permitted 16-year-olds to get hitched.)
And yet Moon opposed that bill because he saw nothing wrong with 15-year-olds getting married, citing that same married-at-12 couple in his defense.
This isn’t just some weird view held by a random Republican lawmaker.
According to his campaign website, Moon brags about being a “believer in Jesus Christ” and notes that he met his own wife at Baptist Bible College (not, as you might suspect, elementary school). He’s currently a member of High Street Baptist Church, “where he serves as a deacon, Sunday school teacher, and on several mission committees.”
He’s previously thrown hissy fits over a statue of the Roman goddess Ceres atop the Capitol dome because it’s a “false god” and made headlines for posting a video to Facebook slaughtering a chicken, then pulling out its heart for viewers, all to make some point about abortion.
This guy uses his Christian faith to justify everything from animal murder to child rape. All while claiming the real problem in society is the existence of transgender students.
This is what passes for lawmaking when Republicans control the state government.
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