Anyone want to discuss Warren Jeffs? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 12:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by swimswamswum
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I like having one DH, but I could see the advantage for some people to have more than one spouse- especially if they were kind of lazy or something.
Heck no! That's 3x as many socks all over the floor.
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#62 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 02:38 AM
 
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Well, I'd say in our society, polyandry would be more economically viable than polygyny (the proper term for multiple wives; polygamy just means multiple marriage). In places where polygyny is traditionally practiced, such as many parts of rural Africa, it has to do with economics more than anything else. In a subsistence agrarian or pastoral economy where women and children are the primary laborers, having more of them banded together as an organized labor unit makes economic sense. If you can afford it, having another wife is going to help the whole family live better lives and let you be a teeny bit wealthier because you can produce more/maintain more cattle, etc. As people move to urban areas and come to rely on the cash economy, this system falls apart. Polygyny loses its advantages and becomes less common--actually, women tend to get the dirty end of the stick in that situation in Africa because the "man as breadwinner" thing never really took off in many places. With the erosion of traditional responsibilities and roles, women wind up doing all the work on their own (raising and feeding children and putting a roof over their heads, etc.) and are poorer.

The economic scams and shams of the FLDS church represent some of the problems with polygamy in our society when you try to also enforce traditional Western male/female roles. No, having 3 wives and 17 children or whatever is not as likely to be a viable family structure if you've got all three wives staying at home and out of the workforce with the man expected to be the breadwinner. But if just one wife stays home and there are 3 people bringing cash into the family, or the wives help each other with child care with all of them bringing some kind of WAH or WOH money in, it could be a very comfortable lifestyle. From what I've read of other mormon polygamists (and the example of the family I mentioned above), this is a more practical way to go about it in our society. Being a Patriarch just doesn't work without a suitable economic base. Those in the Bible were pastoralists or farmers, after all.

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#63 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 07:30 AM
 
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A brief thought about the welfare fraud issue--the fraud was based on the fact that these plural wives would file for welfare as single mothers, even though they were living with civilly-unrecognized husbands. But polygamous marriage is illegal. In Utah, even polyamorous cohabitation is illegal (I'm pretty sure this is unconstitutional post-Lawrence, but it hasn't been challenged). There are 1049 federal benefits that are only for legally married people. Is it really fair to deny people marriage rights, and then criticize them for filing for welfare as single people? What should an ethical plural family do? They can't get the benefits of married people, and if they try for the benefits of single people, that's fraud?


Of course for full disclosure, I really don't think welfare fraud is all that evil. Our society does such an abysmal job of helping people in need, I can't really blame people if in order to provide food or shelter or medical care for their children, they bend the truth on the forms a little bit. And I would much rather my tax dollars went to help families in need, polygamous, monogamous, or otherwise, or to help moms stay home with their babies, than almost anything else paid for by taxes. That's just my opinion though.

And of course the child abuse, forced marriage, statutory rape should definitely be punished. But I'm not sure the welfare fraud is as unethical as it's being made out to be.
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#64 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 12:23 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Brigianna
A brief thought about the welfare fraud issue--the fraud was based on the fact that these plural wives would file for welfare as single mothers, even though they were living with civilly-unrecognized husbands. But polygamous marriage is illegal. In Utah, even polyamorous cohabitation is illegal (I'm pretty sure this is unconstitutional post-Lawrence, but it hasn't been challenged). There are 1049 federal benefits that are only for legally married people. Is it really fair to deny people marriage rights, and then criticize them for filing for welfare as single people? What should an ethical plural family do? They can't get the benefits of married people, and if they try for the benefits of single people, that's fraud?
...
That's easy enough. I don't mind them getting welfare if they are geniunely in need, polygamist or monogamist. But the families in question have money coming out their ears and filed ANYWAY, because they can. Free money, HEY!! Why not, am I right? Easy enough to put all assets under one family so the others can file as super super poor.
That is what my neighbors did, along with building their whole compound off one illegal water connection (so they weren't paying their water bill, at all) and all sans permits. When rough times hit, the bank took the houses, and now the poor suckers who bought them have houses that actually overlap the property line.
I don't have a problem with nice, consentual polygamy by nice people. There is just this pattern right now of people that feel free to help themselves to any resource they choose, no matter how immoral it might be to do so. And time and again, the law looks the other way.
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#65 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 04:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by boingo82
Heck no! That's 3x as many socks all over the floor.
Okay, good point. I was thinking that it could be beneficial for other reasons, but you're probably right.
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#66 of 66 Old 09-09-2006, 11:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by boingo82
That's easy enough. I don't mind them getting welfare if they are geniunely in need, polygamist or monogamist. But the families in question have money coming out their ears and filed ANYWAY, because they can. Free money, HEY!! Why not, am I right? Easy enough to put all assets under one family so the others can file as super super poor.
That is what my neighbors did, along with building their whole compound off one illegal water connection (so they weren't paying their water bill, at all) and all sans permits. When rough times hit, the bank took the houses, and now the poor suckers who bought them have houses that actually overlap the property line.
I don't have a problem with nice, consentual polygamy by nice people. There is just this pattern right now of people that feel free to help themselves to any resource they choose, no matter how immoral it might be to do so. And time and again, the law looks the other way.
If it's really obscene fraud, then yeah that should be stopped/punished. It just seems funny to me that of all the fraudulent uses of tax dollars, welfare fraud is probably the smallest amount, and yet it's the one people get most exercised about.

And really, what's an ethical plural family supposed to do if they're legitimately in need? Should they file as "married" because they're living as married, even though they're denied the 1049 federal benefits reserved only for married people? Isn't it unfair to say they can't have the benefits of marriage, and they can't have the benefits of single status either?
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