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One of my nieces – from a very large family – was at my house playing with my girls when she noticed my baby had teeth.

“How many teeth does your baby have?” she asked.

“Five,” I answered.

She then proceeded to tell me the number of teeth all the babies/toddlers in her family had and even the number of teeth of some of the children of her married siblings.

All of this came from a SIX-YEAR-OLD.

Not only did I find it absolutely adorable that she was so observant and cared so much about her siblings, I couldn’t help but chuckle to myself at all the people I hear talk about how unloved polygamous children are.  We always hear from the naysayers how children in plural homes are “just another number.” 

Children are taught to be observant and caring by the examples of the adults in their lives. If a six-year-old knows that level of detail about the children in her family, just think about how much her parents know and care about the children in the household.

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Monogamy has been codified into the law of the land due to a nineteenth century religious bias inherited from a state religion tradition in government dating to the Romans where there was only one church. If there had been true separation of church and state in this country, the government would have been religion neutral and freedom would have trumped any alleged harm regarding polygamy—But, as black slaves had to fight for their freedom to overturn “Dred Scott” and eventually gain civil rights equality (in this America where all men are purportedly created equal), polygamists have had to fight as well for the reversal of “Reynolds” and continue to endure oppressive bias regarding a religiously mandated monogamy. This begs the question, “In a free state, why should the religious tradition (monogamy) of the majority be imposed on an unpopular religious minority?”

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Another article on the recent decision by a federal judge in Canada to declare three federal statutes criminalizing prostitution to be unconstitutional has a very interesting basis in Canadian legal theory, “the right not to be harmed.” Apparently the theory goes something like this:

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Our community recently had the wonderful and joyful pleasure of having Maya Stein visit and share her amazing poetic talent with us. She shared the experience on her blog and it seemed appropriate to repost here as well:

I have so much to say about the past two days, and yet I can’t possibly contain it all here, in the span of a blog post. It feels like the world has shifted, and it’s beyond election results and the World Series and October segueing into November. It’s something about world view and peace-making and surrender. It’s about being aligned with the desert and safeguarded by mountains. It’s about self-care and self-love. And it’s about the grandeur of kindness.

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Here we are in the 21st Century. Technology is moving faster than we can keep up with, opening whole new arenas to us. The options of what we watch, listen to, read and connect with are so much more expansive than at any other part of our lives, informing us of any little thing we could hope to know.

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These comments from J. Wight, and others from the http://www.jonathanturley.org blog were well articulated and we feel it has merit to be shared here on our blog:

J. Wight
1, October 18, 2010 at 4:40 am
I’m a mainstream Mormon and have alway been taught to shun even the appearance of condoning the polygamous lifestyle at all costs. I grew up in Oregon but now I live in the same Utah valley as the participants in this show. I’m an involuntarily-divorced father and over the past years I have come to reconsider the notion of polygamy, though I would never leave my church and will never do anything other than sympathize with many polygamous families. I now know polygamous families personally that are decent, down-to-earth, and loving families. The astounding fact everyone seems to miss is the caring, nurturing, and loving parenting that takes place with the children. This lifestyle is probably not for everyone, but if you think that this lifestyle is somehow deficient for the children involved, compared with neighbors and most families,who put their children in daycare for 10 hours a day, then you are simply deluded. No sober or sane perspective of these people, witnessing it first-hand, can come to this conclusion. The caveat here, of course, is that I’m talking about the non-criminal and/or non-abusive polygamous lifestyle. Everyone knows about the crazy and abusive polygamists, who operate and socio-pathologically thrive on the margins of a disenfranchised or outlawed culture–like so many other sociopaths who operate on so many different fringes of the marginalized populations of our societies. Because they can get away with so much on the un-monitored margins, sociopathic personalities will always be associated with such subcultures. However, you must look beyond the headlines and surface portrayals to understand a cultural choice such as this, just as you would for any alternative lifestyle.

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The following article from http://www.cavalierdaily.com written by Claire Shotwell captures some of our thoughts and talking points regarding the change of attitude we wish to see of Americans concerning our right to practice adult consensual polygamy; and it illustrates that many who aren’t in polygamous societies realize that this is a civil right that shouldn’t be criminalized by a society that is continually becoming more accepting of homosexuals:

The first time I watched “Sister Wives” on TLC, I thought to myself, “How can people that seem so normal be so weird?” For those of you who have not seen the show or its promotional advertisements, it follows a modern, polygamist family — the Browns — who live in Utah. They wear jeans and T-shirts, curse and even encourage their daughters to finish college before they marry. How exceedingly … normal. I have since realized that the Brown family confronts the negative stereotypes and stigmas associated with plural marriages and also present the positive side to a debate that society has long ignored. State governments, in examining the equality and justness of marriage, should not only debate same-sex marriage, but plural marriage as well.
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