Mindel Scott

Mormon Polygamy Legal Us

Today, Church members honor and respect the sacrifices made by those who practiced polygamy in the early days of the Church. However, the practice is forbidden in the Church, and no one can practice plural marriage and remain a member. The Mormon practice of plural marriage was officially introduced on July 12, 1843, by Joseph Smith, founder of the Latter-day Saint movement. Since polygamy was illegal in the state of Illinois,[24] it was practiced in secret during Smith`s lifetime. During the Nauvoo era, from 1839 to 1844, several Mormon leaders (including Smith, Brigham Young, and Heber C. Kimball) adopted several wives, but all Mormon leaders who publicly taught polygamous doctrine were disciplined. For example, Hyram Brown was excommunicated on February 1, 1844. [25] In May 1844, Smith declared, “What a thing it is for a man to be accused of adultery and to have seven wives, if I can find only one.” [26] Polygamy became a major social and political problem in the United States in 1852 when The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) announced that a form of practice called plural marriage was part of its doctrine. The U.S. government`s opposition to this practice led to a fierce legal dispute, culminating when Church President Wilford Woodruff announced the official abandonment of the Church on September 25, 1890. [1] However, renegade fundamentalist Mormon groups living primarily in the western United States, Canada, and Mexico still practice plural marriage.

In 2005, the attorneys general of Utah and Arizona released an introduction to help victims of domestic violence and child abuse in polygamous communities. [42] It was subsequently updated four times, most recently in 2011. [38] [43] [39] [44] The enforcement of crimes such as child abuse, domestic violence, and fraud has been placed above the enforcement of anti-polygamy and bigamy laws. The priorities of local prosecutors are not covered by this statement. When it became clear in 1890 that Utah would not be admitted to the Union while polygamy was still practiced, Church President Wilford Woodruff issued a manifesto that officially ended the practice of polygamy. [7] Although this manifesto did not dissolve existing plural marriages, relations with the United States improved considerably after 1890, so that Utah was admitted as a U.S. state in 1896. After the Manifesto, some Church members continued to contract polygamous marriages, but these finally ceased in 1904 when Church President Joseph F. Smith disavowed polygamy before Congress and issued a “Second Manifesto” calling for the cessation of all plural marriages in the Church and the consequent excommunication of those who disobeyed.

Introduced. Several small “fundamentalist” groups who wanted to continue the practice split from the LDS Church, including the United Apostolic Brethren (AUB) and The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS Church). Meanwhile, the LDS Church continues its policy of excommunicating members who practice polygamy and today actively seeks to distance itself from fundamentalist groups that continue this practice. [8] On its website, the Church explains that “the standard teaching of the Church is monogamy” and that polygamy was a temporary exception to the rule. [9] [10] Utah`s history of prosecuting crimes for polygamy never completely stopped its practice, but pushed it to the margins of society and created a culture of fear that allows perpetrators to thrive, Henderson said. Critics, however, say the measure falsely portrays polygamy as a human rights issue. Casey E. Faucon, an assistant professor at the University of Alabama School of Law, has written about polygamy for the Utah Law Review, the Harvard Law & Policy Review and the Duke Journal of Gender Law & Policy.

She believes that Americans are more accepting of polygamy because they generally accept alternative lifestyles. Senior leaders used the examples of polygamy of God the Father and Jesus Christ to defend them, and these teachings about God and the polygamy of Jesus were widely accepted among Mormons in the late 1850s. [33] [34] In 1853, Jedediah M. Grant, who later became a member of the First Presidency, explained that the main reason for persecuting Christ and His disciples was that they practiced polygamy. [35] [33] Two months later, Apostle Orson Pratt taught in a Church magazine, “We have now made it clear that God the Father had a multitude of wives” and that Mary (Jesus` mother) may have become another woman of eternal polygamous God after her death. [36] [37] He also explained that Christ had several wives as further evidence of the defense of polygamy. [38] [33] Over the next two years, Apostle Orson Hyde also stated that Jesus practiced polygamy in two general conference addresses,[39][40][33] and repeated it in an 1857 discourse. [41] [42] This doctrine was taught by President Brigham Young in 1870 and President Joseph F.

of the First Presidency. Smith in 1883. [43] [44] As early as 1832, Mormon missionaries worked successfully to convert followers of polygamous religious leader Jacob Cochran in Maine, who went into hiding in 1830 to avoid imprisonment for his polygamy. Among Cochran`s marital innovations was “spiritual wife” and “tradition has it that he frequently received spiritual concubines and that they were, without exception, the strongest and most attractive women in the community.” [17] The majority of what became the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in 1835 attended Mormon conferences held in the central territory of Cochrane in 1834 and 1835. [18] [19] [20] [21] Brigham Young, a Church Apostle, met Cochran`s disciples on several missionary journeys through Cochrane territory from Boston to Saco,[22] and later married Augusta Adams Cobb, a former Cochranite. [23] [24] TLC`s Sister Wives stars challenged Utah`s bigamy laws,[48] but also acknowledged that the constitutional ban on polygamy licenses would remain in place regardless of the outcome of the trial. [48] On December 13, 2013, U.S. Federal Judge Clark Waddoups ruled in Brown v.

Buhman[49] that the parts of Utah`s anti-polygamy laws prohibiting the cohabitation of multiple marriages were unconstitutional, but also allowed Utah to maintain its ban on multiple marriage licenses. [50] [51] [52] Illegal cohabitation, in which prosecutors did not have to prove that a marriage had taken place (only that a couple had lived together), had been an important tool in the prosecution of polygamy in Utah since the Edmunds Act of 1882. [53] The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit overturned the decision on April 11. 2016 [54] On January 23, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the arguments of the husband and four wives featured on the TV show Sister Wives, upholding a lower court decision that had made polygamy a crime in Utah. [55] State Senator Deidre M. Henderson, the bill`s lead sponsor, stressed that the state does not legalize bigamy.

“We simply removed the fear of law-abiding polygamists of being imprisoned or having their children taken away,” she told The New York Times in a 2020 interview. She also explained that most polygamists prosecuted in recent years have already been charged with other crimes, not bigamy. Polygamy is illegal in all 50 states. But Utah`s law is unique in that a person can be convicted of not only having two legal marriage licenses, but also of living with another adult in a marriage-like relationship if they are already legally married to someone else. According to Church guidelines, after a man`s death, he can be sealed by proxy to all women to whom he was legally married during his lifetime. The same is true for women; However, if a woman has been sealed to a man during her lifetime, all her husbands must be dead before she can be sealed to them by proxy. [80] [85] Critics of polygamy in the early LDS Church claim that Church leaders sometimes used polygamy to exploit young girls for immoral purposes. [102] Historian George D.