Sunday, October 24, 2010

FLDS Statements in Canadian Polygamy Case

Here's an article about some affidavits submitted by FLDS members in Canada's trial over polygamy.

What is surprising is that the affidavits are steeped in the myth of persecution. Filed in advance of the constitutional reference case, which is scheduled to be heard starting Nov. 22 in B.C. Supreme Court, they reveal that almost all of the fundamentalist Mormons say they live in fear of being jailed or having their children taken away from them.

Yet, the first time fundamentalist Mormon men were charged in Canada with polygamy was two years ago.

So then it shouldn't come as a surprise. It is fresh in their minds that they could be prosecuted for practicing polygyny.

There are other surprises. The affidavits clearly indicate that fundamentalist Mormons believe that if the anti-polygamy section of the Criminal Code is struck down in B.C. Supreme Court, they will get all of the benefits of Canadian society and more.

They believe it would mean an unfettered guarantee of religious freedom. And, unlike polyamorists who also want the section struck down, fundamentalist Mormons want as little as possible to do with secular Canadian society.

It's called freedom of association. It is a freedom that should protect the right to a poly home, too.

In fundamentalist Mormon doctrine -- unlike in the Qur'an -- there is no requirement that men must be financially able to support all of their wives and children.

I'm not an expert in Canadian law, but I'm guessing there is no requirement that one spouse must be financially able to support the other spouse and any children in a monogamous marriage.

But what is clear is that fundamentalist Mormons believe that a win in court would clear the way for them to set up a distinct society -- a theocracy within our secular, liberal democracy.

Again, this is freedom of association. It is important to make sure nobody is being kept somewhere against their will, or being forced to do anything against their will.  (And no child rape.) Other than that, let people live as they choose if they aren't harming others.

Canada can take another huge step towards full marriage equality by legalizing this freedom to marry, as it did with the freedom to marry one same-sex spouse.
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