I was standing face to face with women from the Yearning For Zion ranch and getting an idea of the difficulties investigators say they've been having for the past week and a half.
In a surprising move, the secretive, polygamist FLDS sect opened its gates and allowed us to go inside.
The first thing I was told was not to call the secured and secluded property a "compound." Some of the men objected to the term, preferring their home be called a "ranch."
We were guided a short way to a residential area where the women were waiting. They had just been removed from a state shelter and taken away from their children. They were hurt, angry and some were crying.
No questions were off limits, but most of these mothers seemed very sensitive about telling me how old they were when they married. Most said 18.
Everyone I spoke with insisted that no woman was ever forced to marry, but there was frequent hesitation when I pressed for details on whether or not women under the age of 17 were being married to adult men, as the state alledges.
Most women would not give me their last name. Every time I pressed for answers I was told that all they were concerned about is getting their 416 children back.
This much I'm sure is true.
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The Northeast woke up with weather a bit chillier than usual this morning... That got me thinking (in between shivering)... and thats when I found it – Tonight's ‘Beat 360°.’
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Here is today’s “Beat 360°” pic of the day: Here we see a whole bunch of Snowmen in Velka Raca-Oscadnica, Slovakia last year (Ahhh, THIS must be where they all go during the off-season...) They were built as part of an attempt to contest the world record for the building of snowmen. Residents of the village built 205 snowmen in an hour and 361 snowmen in 8 hours and will ask to be written into the Guiness Book of Records.
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Filed under: Beat 360°
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/15/art.congressman.geoff.davis.jpg caption="Congressman Geoff Davis (R-KY) ."]
Roland S. Martin, CNN Contributor
Special Correspondent, Essence Magazine/Essence.com
When I read about Kentucky Republican Congressman Geoff Davis using the word "boy" in reference to Sen. Barack Obama, I immediately thought of a routine, and subsequent book, by comedian Cedric the Entertainer.
While watching the movie, "The Kings of Comedy," Ced had me rolling in the aisle talking about being a "grown ass man," and that eventually became the title of his best-selling book, "Grown-A$$ Man."
For those who think that African Americans are too sensitive over this issue, and it's just a well-meaning person making a mistake, I understand that. But others must understand the history of African Americans, and what it has always meant to black men for someone to call them a "boy."
Tonight we begin a series of candidate profiles...Tonight's focus: Senator Barack Obama. Barack Obama is known for his smooth oratorical skills, his easy way, and his supreme confidence. But he wasn’t always the sure-footed politician we see today. The son of an African father and a white mid-western mother, Obama was mostly raised by his white grandparents. He struggled with his identity and where he fit in. Obama’s closest high school friend tells Anderson that he felt abandoned by his parents, and left out at his mostly white, mostly wealthy high school. He found a place to belong on the basketball court, but off the court he struggled…experimenting with drugs to numb the confusion. Obama’s community organizing boss tells AC360 he was a chronic underachiever, until college when his mother’s influence finally came to bear and he began applying himself. Obama continued struggling with his identity, searching for a place to belong throughout his younger years. He finally found that place in the African American community in Chicago, joining an African American church, and marrying a black woman from the south side. And somewhere along the way, he also found his purpose. Looking back now it looks as if, that young man who was searching so hard to find his identity had all along been on a journey toward the white house
Also, Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores the many sides of former Heisman Trophy winner, NFL running back Herschel Walker. His new book "Breaking Free" details Walker's life living with dissociative identity disorder (AKA multiple personalities). Walker's revelation caught many former teammates and coaches by surprise. Dr. Sanjay Gupta sat down with Walker, who described the various facets of his disorder, and explained how the various personalities may not be aware of one another, or have access to all memories. Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores this fascinating disorder, speaking to Walker, his physician, and his former wife. This is MUST SEE TV...
AND David Mattingly continues on the poylgamy beat in Texas. AC360 was granted exclusive access to the YFZ (Yearning for Zion) Ranch last night....we heard from many of the women, who have NOW been separated from their children...Fascinating stuff... PLUS Dan Simon's interview with Winston Blackmore will hopefully air tonight. Blackmore, the polygamous leader who broke away from Warren Jeffs and resides north of the border, reacts to the Texas raid....
AND lets not forget the POPE...He arrives around 4 pm eastern...we will track his FIRST journey to the United States....Man oh man, there is a lot going on tonight!!!!
Filed under: The Buzz
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