GOP sex ed furor lingers over child sexual abuse task force meeting




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In the midst of a brewing controversy over sex education in Arizona schools, Gov. Doug Ducey’s task force that aims to examine ways to better protect children from sexual abuse had its second meeting. 

The task force is seemingly at odds with legislative priorities outlined by Speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives Rusty Bowers, R-Mesa, and Sen. Sylvia Allen, R-Snowflake, who have stated their intentions to block any sort of sex education up to the fifth grade. 

The task force in its first meeting had discussed age appropriate preventative training for children on how to spot inappropriate sexual behavior starting at an early age, something legislation proposed by Allen could prevent. 

Rep. Paul Boyer, R-Glendale, who co-chairs the task force with acting Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell, said he aims to speak with Allen about her legislation. 

“In principal, they should be fine with (the task force’s recommendations),” Boyer told Arizona Mirror after the meeting. “I think we’re all on the same page.” 

However, a bill proposed earlier this year by Sen. Victoria Steele, D-Tucson, that would have created what the task force is looking into creating died without a hearing in the Senate Education Committee, which Allen leads. During her speech at a Sept. 14 education forum in opposition to sex education in schools, Allen bragged about how she blocked Democrat bills related to sex education. 

Currently, 26 states and Guam have a law that requires the state to either study or develop age-appropriate child sexual abuse prevention and identification classes beginning in pre-kindergarten in order to educate both students and teachers about the signs of child sexual abuse. 

Arizona is not one of those states. 

The task force’s second meeting focused heavily on sex trafficking and cold cases, though the issue of sex abuse prevention education and sex education hung over the group. 

“Its sort of ad hoc right now,” Gilbert Orrantia, Arizona’s Director of Homeland Security said about sex abuse prevention training during a presentation to the task force. “In some situations, people don’t really want that right now. Its not sex education, its prevention education.”

Orrantia later reiterated that one of the biggest ways to stop sex trafficking of children is preventative education. 

Additionally, a representative from the State Board of Education was present during the task force meeting. 

Earlier this month, Bowers told parents at an education forum that the Democratic state schools chief is a “radical” and that Planned Parenthood has the “business plan of hell” in part because the organization advocates for sex education in public schools. 

Bowers previously told the Mirror that he had not met with anyone on the task force to discuss the education component of preventing child sex abuse.

“There isn’t a middle ground on sexualizing my children,” Bowers said. “If you want to put that in your paper, you can.” 

The House speaker reiterated he was “all for” helping kids understand what they need to know when speaking with police, but said children are able to educate themselves on sex.

“If you go and talk to a kid, they can figure out how sex works real quick,” Bowers said. 

The task force didn’t delve into the issues around sex education that are brewing at the Capitol, and focused instead on looking deeper into the issues of cold cases and child sex trafficking. 

Sen. Heather Carter, R-Cave Creek, expressed surprise when a speaker from the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office told the task force that law enforcement agencies in Arizona do not have a centralized repository to share data on sex crimes. 

Carter said she wants tha task force to come up with a recommendation to allow for better reporting between law enforcement entities in the state in order to keep child sex predators from moving around to avoid detection, a tactic often used by perpatrators of sexual abuse. 

The task force is scheduled to meet again on Oct. 1.

9 COMMENTS

  1. This controversial subject and laws should NOT be determined by PROSECUTORS running for office. And certainly, not a temporary Maricopa County DA/Attorney, Rachel Mitchell, who plan to run for office driven by abuse of power and prosecutorial malfeasance. These child sex issues should wait until AFTER the new MCAO is elected in 2020. Once again, preparing for the upcoming election, the Maricopa County Attorneys Office and candidates have a long established pattern of using child sex crimes/abuse for political gain, which results in campaign witch hunts with no presumption of innocence or due process. By the way, is Rachel Mitchell a parent? Government interference in our children’s sex education, sexualizing our children, creating unnecessary fears is wrong! Keep child sex abuse out of politics!

    • Watch Kern County DA Ed Jagels. A prosecutor in action with NO accountability. He should have been sent to prison for the innocent lives he destroyed. Maricopa County DA/Attorneys Office is similar. — “A look back: Kern County’s ‘Witch Hunt’; a man who was falsely accused is still trying to clear his..
      3,573 views•May 19, 2016

    • A continuation of the ’80’s and 90’s moral panic witch hunts for political and financial gain, in the name of “saving the children”? Time to call it what it is. Arizona does NOT care about the children with the separation of families, children taken from their mothers with way to find them again. #Hypocrites on the campaign cycle use child sex crimes to the detriment of innocent lives that will be shredded with moral panic laws.

      “Conviction of Things Not Seen: The Uniquely American Myth of Satanic Cults” – Pacific Standard https://wrongfulconvictionsblog.org/2015/09/10/satanic-cult-hysteria-still-capable-of-putting-people-through-hell/

  2. A MUST-WATCH documentary: WITCH HUNT by Sean Penn. How DA’s/prosecutors use children and sex crimes for political and financial gain. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JxKy7nC9jM

    Running for election, DA Ed Jagels should have been sent to prison for the innocent lives he destroyed and growth of the prison population with draconian laws. Kern County is like Maricopa County.

    • LEARN FROM “WITCH HUNT” — What words will your legislation put into a child’s mouth? The ordinary word “touch” in AZ = a class 2 felony; 17 years in prison. Changing a baby’s diaper is child molest, a class 2 felony. Work at changing these terribly written laws that put ALL at risk for destruction. All one has to do is point the finger at another person.

      Law enforcement turns it around. Prosecutors use them for easy convictions: “A look back: Kern County’s ‘Witch Hunt’; a man who was falsely accused is still trying to clear his …”
      3,573 views•May 19, 2016

  3. Lest we forget the destruction caused with moral panics created by prosecutors and legislators running for office — for political and financial gain. Table the discussion on the child sex related issues until after the election. Certainly an interim MCAO filling Bill Montgomery’s position should not be making these laws — once again would be used for political gain.

    Satanic cult hysteria still capable of putting people through hell
    Posted on September 10, 2015 by Martin Yant | 13 Comments
    If you thought that the Satanic Panic and child-abuse hysteria, which caused dozens of wrongful convictions in the 1980s and 1990s, are no longer a threat, think again. Pacific Standard magazine writer Dan Shewan says there still are a lot of true believers out there.

    “The specter of Satanic cult hysteria continues to color many cases marked by unusual barbarity and cruelty, little having apparently been learned from the lessons of the 1980s,” Shewan writes. “In some quarters, crude symbolism and token teenage dabblings in the occult are still seen as evidence that legitimate, violent Satanic cults exist.” You can read Shewan’s frightening story here.

    https://wrongfulconvictionsblog.org/2015/09/10/satanic-cult-hysteria-still-capable-of-putting-people-through-hell/

  4. Here we go again. Read this articles as a reminder where these controversial laws end up — destroying innocent lives by creating moral panic and controversy.

    CONVICTION OF THINGS NOT SEEN: THE UNIQUELY AMERICAN MYTH OF SATANIC CULTS — “How quack psychology helped pundits invent the Satanic Panic of the 1980s and ‘90s.”

    DAN SHEWAN UPDATED:JUN 14, 2017ORIGINAL:SEP 8, 2015
    https://PSMAG.COM/SOCIAL-JUSTICE/MAKE-A-CROSS-WITH-YOUR-FINGERS-ITS-THE-SATANIC-PANIC

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