In a jaw-dropping display of hypocrisy, Missouri State Senator Mike Moon (R) recently defended the rights of parents to marry off their children as young as 12 years old. Moon’s comments came during a heated debate over banning gender-affirming care for transgender minors, where he was accused of inconsistency in his stance on parents’ rights.
Democratic State Rep. Peter Meredith confronted Moon, reminding him that he had previously voted against making it illegal for children to be married to adults at the age of 12 if their parents consented. Meredith accused Moon of essentially supporting the legality of child rape, as long as the parents approved of the marriage.
Moon, instead of addressing the accusation directly, responded with an anecdote about knowing a couple who had married at the age of 12 and were still together. This disturbing defense of child marriage is not an isolated incident for Moon, who has a history of supporting such unions.
It’s disheartening to see politicians like Moon, who claim to champion the rights of parents, expose their hypocrisy and lack of empathy when it comes to the well-being of children. Child marriage, which is a human rights violation, has lasting consequences on young lives, including the potential for physical, emotional, and psychological trauma. By supporting this practice, Moon is disregarding the rights and welfare of the very children he purports to protect.
As young, progressive readers, we must continue to call out and challenge these dangerous and outdated views, advocating for the rights and protection of all children, regardless of their age, gender identity, or background. It’s time to hold our elected officials accountable and demand they work towards creating a safer and more inclusive society for everyone.