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-Federal Judge: Utah’s Law Criminalizing Polygamy is Unconstitutional

by Dr. D ~ December 16th, 2013

The title card for Sister Wives, a TLC reality...

                  ( ‘Sister Wives’ TV Series: Wikipedia)

A federal Judge has ruled that Utah’s law which criminalizes polygamy is unconstitutional.

This does not mean that polygamy is now ‘legally’ recognized  in Utah only that there will no longer be a penalty for multiple people to live together in some kind of committed relationships.

Here’s the story from the RNS:

A federal judge has made a ruling suggests that Utah’s laws criminalizing polygamy are unconstitutional, in a case involving the Brown family featured on TLC’s reality series “Sister Wives.”

U.S. District Court Judge Clark Waddoups’ ruling attacks sections of Utah’s law making cohabitation illegal, saying in his decision that the phrase “or cohabits with another person” is a violation of both the First and 14th amendments.

In his decision, Waddoups writes that while there is no “fundamental right” to practice polygamy, the issue really comes down to “religious cohabitation.”

The judge’s ruling does not say that Utah has to recognize multiple marriages, …

<Read the whole article>

Response:This is a very narrow decision aimed at dismissing any penalties for ‘religious’ polygamy in Utah. In one sense I guess it could be considered a ‘freedom of religion’ issue at least that is how the judge has conveniently framed it. However it is really a product of the current social environment in America which condones pre-marital cohabitation and a toleration of all sorts of relationships which used to be considered ‘immoral’ a generation ago when the country was far more Christian than it is today. This is just the beginning.

In America we are in the middle of re-defining marriage to include same-sex relationships. While this decision has nothing to do with same-sex marriage, it is creating an environment where eventually marriage could be re-defined to include other types of committed relationships. After all, what would be the rational for continuing to prohibit polygamy or polyamory once the understanding of what constitutes marriage is separated from it’s traditional New Testament Christian roots?            *Top

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4 Responses to -Federal Judge: Utah’s Law Criminalizing Polygamy is Unconstitutional

  1. Brian

    This development was, of course, long foreseen by those who opposed the legalization of homosexual marriage. We are, quite literally, approaching a situation where any “arrangement” between consenting adults will be an acceptable “marriage” in the eyes of the law. The legal implications for taxes, government benefits, inheritance, etc are mind-boggling.

    I would point out that, in 1 Cor. 9:5, Paul points out that he has the “right” to a believing wife, just like the rest of the Apostles, the brothers of the Lord and even Simon Peter. Paul never says he has the “right” to multiple wives.

    Once all the standards and restrictions which limit the scope of “marriage” have fallen by the wayside (and that will not take long, at our present pace) and adults have absolute unlimited license to arrange their sexual affairs without legal or societal sanction, the next step in the agenda will be to lower the age of consent, and otherwise desensitize the population to the idea of teenage sex….and how much lower it will go is anybody’s guess.

  2. Dr. D

    Thanks Brian,
    I have been saying here for some time that a change in the definition of marriage would eventually lead to further changes including the acceptance of polygamy and other forms of relationships once the Biblical NT standards are eliminated.

    Some have called me extreme in that view but in reality there simply is no reason to stop at same-sex marriage if there are no longer any recognized authoritative standards.

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