The Sad Case of Cassidy Goodson


Cassidy Goodson is 14, and has been charged with murder as an adult by the government of Florida. Allegedly, she strangled her newborn infant.

According to the NY Daily News she hid her pregnancy from her parents, then gave birth by herself and killed the baby boy after trying to perform an abortion.

Question #1 is, why did she not share the problem with her parents? - no answer being known for now, we must speculate. An obvious possibility is that relations inside the family were dysfunctional. Perhaps Cassidy was scared out of her wits for 7 or 8 months but felt she had nowhere to turn. That's tragic. It also places blame on her parents. Why was there not open communication? - was Cassidy herself perhaps an unwanted child?

The government of Florida requires minors to inform parents of a planned abortion, though not to get permission first. Cassidy, apparently, did not bother trying. Perhaps she felt it would make life inside the family trailer even more intolerable, or perhaps she even feared being thrown out. That would explain her determination to keep the pregnancy quiet.

Evidently, she hated the baby for introducing such an agonizing situation. The trauma of having killed the boy will never leave her; her life is already scarred. Now the government is making it infinitely worse, by calling her a murderess.

Technically, she may be. It's ironic however that if her attempted abortion had succeeded ten minutes earlier, there would have been no such charge. This is therefore an excellent illustration of the lunacy of having laws. Every law is a one-size-fits-all "solution", and there is of course an infinitude of different sizes.

After government has evaporated along with its laws, how would a future Cassidy Goodson fare?

First, there would be no impediment to anti-abortion believers advertising, in places such a girl could not fail to see, that they wish to adopt babies and will pay pregnant girls good money to give normal birth. If a "Cassidy" saw the ads and applied, her pregnancy problem would be solved and so would her bad family situation; even at 14, with funds in hand she could up and leave the trailer park.

Second, if she did not accept such an offer, the requirement to inform her parents would not exist. Though normally beneficial, in such a case as Cassidy's she would be able to apply to other charities for help with an abortion - properly administered.

And third and most important, she (obviously a child, immature in all respects except one) would not be subjected to an adult law, nor made answerable to a charge which will doubly scar her whole life. There can hardly be a worse example of cruelty to children. In any case of homicide, the victim's family would (in a true justice system) be able to sue the killer, for the loss caused; in a case like this, the girl's own parents were denied the pleasure of a grandson, and might sue their own daughter. These circumstances are such that I think no lawyer would take the case - or not, at least, on contingency. Hence a future Cassidy would at least be spared the extra trauma of a court case.

Lastly, what of the infant, whose life was snuffed out moments after it began? He too is part of the tragedy - arguably the biggest part. He died because government and its laws impeded the flow of offers to Cassidy from those who would have saved his life - because it distorted or prohibited a free market. One more death by government.