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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

April 18, 2009 at 6:00 AM

Mother, 14, charged in newborn’s death

Abuse and neglect of girl ignored

While reading about the 14-year-old girl who is being charged with killing her newborn baby [“Teen mother charged in smothering of newborn,” NW Thursday, April 16], I am struck by many things. First, this is a heinous act. Society exists in part to protect the most vulnerable among us. This includes the elderly, the sick and disabled and, of course, children.

This 14-year-old mother is not old enough to drink, smoke, work, buy cigarettes, sign a contract or drop out of school. These laws are in place because, as a society, we want to protect our youth so that they will not become targets of abuse.

This girl has been having regular sex with a man six years her senior since she was 13. The article stated that he was not implicated in the baby’s death. I beg to differ. He was the father. He was having predatory sex with this child. When she got pregnant, what did he do?

Adding to this young girl’s misery is her family. First of all, they did not protect her from the sexual predator. Secondly, they did not know she was pregnant even though she had a bump. So where was this child supposed to turn for protection and education and advice?

Society certainly did not protect her. And now they want to extract their pound of flesh and keep her incarcerated until she is 21.

I am appalled. I suspect that the abuse and neglect of this girl is being ignored. This is beyond wrong. I suspect it is misogyny.

Shame on King County for being a partner to this travesty of justice.

— Carol Barber, Kent

Comments | More in Children, crime/justice

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