July 2017 (AP) “Two former leaders of an isolated polygamous community in Canada were convicted Monday of practicing polygamy after a decades-long legal fight, setting up another potential court battle over the constitutionality of Canada’s polygamy laws. Winston Blackmore, 60, and James Oler, 53, were found guilty by British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Sheri Ann Donegan, who said the evidence was clear that Blackmore was married to 25 women at the same time and that Oler was married to five women in the tiny community of Bountiful.”
Actually, the cases bring up several questions, including our culture’s “tolerance” for sexual behavior.
If the two had been simply living and procreating with a total of 30 women, that would be completely legal (provided members of the harems were all over 16 years of age). In the United States, the laws vary from state to state, but in general, if you don’t ask for a marriage license from the state for your first marriage, then you can legally cohabit with as many people as you like and it is not illegal. Bigamy is only a crime for a married person, not for people who are simply living together.
So, utilizing our culture’s current thinking, a case could be made for legalizing polygamy. [Read more]