Sunday, May 4, 2008

Polygamy: Good, Bad, or Normal?

Before I begin to talk about my blog on the Polygamist Cult, I would like to properly point out that a Cult is defined as 'a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader.' This is telling us that the 'Cult' that is in Eldorado is, as the defenition states, false, or extremist. These people seem to be very real, and have a very rea religion, so is it right to be saying that this is a cult? Or is the Government saying that they are 'false' to get the support to go in to their community?

Now..

As you may have already heard from CNN or other news references, there is a Polygamist Cult in Texas. We have seen this many, many times over the past month about what's been going on in this little community in Eldorado, Texas. When we see the news reports, we may think 'Eww, what are they thinking forcing young women to marry older men?' or 'They should all be taken out of that place and have it burned down!' I was wondering, have we ever taken a step back and really looked at this? This 'cult' has been seen as disgusting, unorthodox, and appalling, but let's think for a minute, where has this situation come up before...ah yes, after 9/11 when all the Arab people were looked down on because they were Muslim. If we look, this is another one of these:

"Us" "Them"
"Good" vs. "Bad"
"Right" "Wrong"


In this case, "We" are everyone in North America, and "They" are the people in the Polygamist Cult. Polygamy is another religion, isn't it? Those people are just that; PEOPLE! Although their beliefs are different, why do we look down upon then with disgust? If we were all Polygamists, and this was, say, a Christian Cult in Eldorado, we would be looking down on them with the same disgust, and would that be right? I know there are children in there being married off to older men, but in the eyes of this cult, this is the "Right" and normal thing to do. Looking at the other side, was it right to go in and take all these children from a place they're used to, a place all their mothers live, and somewhere where they were comfortable to 'save' them from their own religion?I believe that they should be left alone to practise their religion. Who are we to tell people what to believe in?




As for the news coverage, CNN has been very, very one-sided. They have been exploiting the Polygamists as extremely bad people, who can do no right, and who are a menace to Society. But what about the good these people are doing? What about the good parts of their lifestyle? They make their own clothing, quilts, food, etc. but where is that in the news? Those are the five-second explanations of what they do, and then they report all the bad things that they are doing. They should be fair to these people ad help the world understand Polygamy, and not how bad it is for doing what they do. It was stated that there was a little girl who broke free from the cult and called the police to inform them of the goings-on in the cult, but since her 'escape' I haven't seehn hide or hair of this little girl, so where is she? I would like to see an interview with the 'little girl' who called the police!




Now, here's my question: If you were a Polygamist, especially a mother of these children, how would you feel if your children were ripped from you? How would you feel if you were never allowed to see your children again, all because of your religion and your beliefs? Personally, I would feel like I let my children down and I would be really mad at the government for taking my children for the simple reason of practising a belief!






**NEW UPDATE**
Since my blog post of the Polygamists, the wives have been trying terribly to get their children back home safe and sound. Watch this video, and notice that the man says that the 'repoted' phone call was made and that they think it was a HOAX!! I agree with this statement. Now, watch the video.



The polygamist mothers took this issue all the way up to the State Supreme court, where they won and were granted the custody of their children. I am really happy for these people, because, like I have said before, they did not deserve to have their children ripped away from them because of an alleged phone call from a girl who hasn't been found yet. Don't you think she would have come out into the open and told news about her 'middle-aged husband who beat her'. I do, which makes this even more interesting, right? Watch this video about the Polygamist Wives and Husbands getting back their children!

26 comments:

Janee=] said...

Good, bad, or normal.

It's said that our society even has to ask that. It's said that we have to ask whether a 50 year old male, can get a 13 year old girl pregneat.It's even more side that some people say it's "normal".

If someone had a daughter and a 40 year old guy got her pregneat and she was like..even 14, DON'T tell me you wouldn't pull a riffle out and DON'T tell me you would think it was ok. Because you wouldn't.
It's disturbing

Nickie said...
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Nickie said...

Jane, I agree with your point about a 40 year old guy getting my own daughter pregnant, but thats not the way it is in this Polygamist Community. I'm here to show you that these people are, however disgusting it is to us, enjoying their religion and enjoying relative peace. This is the way they have been taught, raised, and the only way they know how to live. If someone was to come into your house, and take you away from your family because of the religion you believed in, wouldn't you feel the same way as these women feel?

Janee=] said...

ofcourse those guys are enjoying their religion, their having relations with girls less than half their age.
And if someone came into my house and took away my children I WOULD be out raged, but I wouldn't be with a 60 year old guy for that to happen.
And these children don't even know who their actual parents are... and they live in a small community

kelsey =] said...

i definitely do not agree with polygamy, and some of the things are very disturbing. Like jane said, a 40 year old man with a 14 year old girl, he's old enough to be her father! If this is the girls choice to be with the 40 year old man then it's her choice, but they should not be forced to be with a person that they do not want to be with. And i personally think that 14 is too young to get married anyways, they haven't matured enough yet to make huge decisions like getting married. A 14 year old doesn't know what they want to do with their life. But if polygamy is what people believe in then I guess it's okay as long as they are okay with it, but i definitely am not okay with it.

I just watched Oprah and the episode I was watching was all about polygamy, I wish I could find the video for everyone to see. And there was a young 14 year old girl who was forced to marry her 19 year old first cousin,if that isn't gross enough right there. And she never learned anything about sex or relationships. So when she went on a honeymoon with him he expected it from her and now he is facing charges for rape and the priest of the church is also facing charges for polygamy. So, not all men and women have the choice of who they are going to marry, some are actually forced.

tanya o said...

i believe polygamy is very disturbing and the way they treat little girls. But if this is their religion and what they believe in, then that's a different story. Yes i think its wrong what they are doing, making 14 year old girls marry older men i think that's wrong, their not even old enough to know anything about life. If its what they believe in, then there's nothing we can really do about it but talk about how wrong it is and how it should be stopped.

tanja said...

this is disturbing on so many levels.
not only is the age difference like.. ridiculous,
but if these girls are getting married at 14.. what happens to their future?
do they still go to school? do they work? what the hell is there to look forward to in the future.. taking care of 5739854 children?
and sure, they might enjoy it.. but only because they are used to it. they don't know of anything else, of anytihng better?
what happens to their children, what kind of home do they grow up in? these kids don't even know their own fathers...?

sure,.. they have their benefits .. "they make their own food, clothes..."
sounds like an inrteresting life to me.. for every advantage of polygany, i can name about 10 for monogamy

ALEX said...

You know what, if everyone agrees, the woman and the man then they should do what they want. I am atheist so i dont believe in religon at all, and when children are brought up on religon and their parents are teaching them that religon is the only way. People should have there OWN views. I believe its disturbing too Janee.

Nickie said...

I appreciate all your comments, I never realized this topic struck such a raw nerve with everyone else. People, I would like you to ask one question, though. Why do you all look at this as 'gross' or 'weird'? Okay, I know it IS 'gross' and 'weird' but why are you all one-sided? No one has answered my ultimate question, what would YOU do if someone took you children away just for practising your religion? Also, you have to take a step out of your own skin and look at the other side. Like I said, I do think some of the things that go on are 'gross', but that doesn't make it any more wrong for people to prasctise their religion.

forbzy said...

I dont think it matters if they're happy with polygamy or not i think that if 40 year old men are getting 14 year old girls pregnant then they're child molestors. The fact that they make their own food and quilts shows nothing if they can practice polygamy then why not let all the child molestors out of jail?

Nickie said...

Dave, like everyone else, you have given an oppinion about what you think should be done, and have failed to answer my ultimate question. About your comment of the child molestors, Child molestors in jail don't exactly practice polygamy. If they were let out, the US and Canada would have a LOT to deal with. Im not saying it's right what they're doing in the cult, but it definately isn't something that can be compared to the child molestors who are in jail. Also, you said "I dont think it matters if they're happy with polygamy or not". So, according to you, you could care less if these people have to give up they're happiness, as long as their religion goes to hell, you'll be happy? I dont think thats how we should be treating other human beings, no matter how much we dislike their religion. Think of what it would mean to you if someone cared less about your happiness and thought you should rot in hell for doing what makes you happy, and then tell me you still think they should have to stop what's making them happy.

LBurton24 said...

How long has this cult existed? Who exactly did these people learn from to act this way? I do not see anything wrong with people believing in a certain religion..I personally do not believe in too much so I respect them for having a sincere opinion. Anyone can believe in what they want, but there is a certain extent to this right. Younger children should not be exposed to older people, this just is not fair.

I would be very very upset if one were to come and take my children away because of my religion. Problem is I would never believe what the Polygamy believes. I think if children continue to get taken away from them, they will start to realize what they believe in is not moral and can perhaps change. Like Kelsey, I also watched a video on the polygamy about a child having to marry a family member. When asked about this, people in the cult had nothing to say and kept trying to avoid the question. I was honestly creeped out

Brandon said...

I agree with Nick. Some people really seem to be missing the big point, maybe I am too. I can't exactly answer your ultimate question since I don't have children, but if I did I think I'd be very angry if someone took them away. I'm personally against polygamy and find it quite disturbing, but if that's really how they were raised then I can't blame them much. Most of them aren't being forced to marry people much older than them, so then it shouldn't be that big of a deal.

If news is being one-sided then that is totally wrong. They need to show things for the way they really are instead of focusing on the negatives. The "Us" versus "Them" idea definitely applies here. We believe that they are strange, weird people, but we need to realize that they have feelings too. They're doing something that we consider wrong, but taking away their children will crush them. People need to start thinking of the ways that they are like us.

lauren! said...

An answer to your ULTIMATE QUESTION!!!

Clearly I would be upset if my kids were taken away just for practicing our religion.

According to dictionary.com, religion is “something one believes in and follows devotedly; a point or matter of ethics or conscience, strict faithfulness”. I believe nobody should be judged or treated differently just because of their values and beliefs. HOWEVER, that does not mean they should get away with breaking the law. Mr. Puley mentioned in class the other day that the legal age for a Canadian to willingly have sex is 14. Therefore, if a 50 year old man was having sex with a willing 14 year old in Canada, he is doing nothing wrong but rather practicing his religion.

Do I agree with polygamy? Absolutely not. But that’s a whole other topic.

I have grown up in a society that believes marrying or having sex with someone so much older than am, is not acceptable. However, these young women do not know any different. They have the right to believe whatever they want.

ah-leks said...

Woww, kelsey really pointed something out: "So, not all men and women have the choice of who they are going to marry, some are actually forced." THATS SO TRUE, it didn't even croass my mind, because for awhile i was thinking that we were being the bad guys and intruding their space and harmony, but when i think about it there must be just as much "marital?" conflict with them as there would be in our society. I can picture it being even worse if these are 15 yr old girls, then they must not be properly educated about sex, unless they are being taught it at the age of 8? I think most of us are just focusing on the whole underage sex thing anyway just because its disturbing, but honestly there is so much more to this. I feel that they are not aware of the outside world, I'm not calling them stupid or ignorant but half of them did not have the chance to experience our way of life, and maybe if they were more open to the way we live the media wouldn't cover them as monsters. If anything I think that we are being ignorant to their way of life but I still don't understand the underage sex thing.

чℓℓzล said...

i think the whole under age sex thing is soo wrong and disturbing but thats not the point even though those girls had their kids taken away from them and are being treated like monsters ... its their religion its what they believe is right just like we all have our own beliefs.. they have theirs ... and the way the media is covering this is soo stupid they make them seem like monsters and all that but its the only way they know ...

Brandon said...

I can't tell which side ah-leks is on. Looks like somewhere in the middle. Anyways, I agree these people don't have much idea of the world. I'm guessing they have to learn about marriage at really young ages if they are going to get married at ages like 14. Most of them are not being forced. The ones that are being forced get too much attention in the media and make them all look bad.

Most of the time they aren't breaking the law. If the age of consent was 16 like the United States then they'd be in big trouble. Too bad it's 14.

]ΛvΛЯіччΛ said...
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]ΛvΛЯіччΛ said...

First of all everybody, POLYGAMY IS NOT A RELIGION!! The dictionary definition for polygamy is: having more than one spouse at a time.

Anyways, ya like Nick mentioned, the media has totally made these polygamists out to be weirdos. I remember a long time ago I was watching the news and they mentioned polygamists, who lived just like us-same clothes we wear, same things we do, etc. The only thing was that the man had multiple wives. Ya that's totally weird and wrong to us, but other than that, the media covered them as normal ppl.

However, after the whole story about the cult in Texas came out the media has really been one-sided. Instead of focusing on the issue, which I think was the fact that young girls were said to have been forced to marry old men, the news has been focusing on the fact that the entire cult as a whole is full of total freaks. It all seems wrong and gross to us, but that's because, like Lauren said, we've grown up in a society that's told us that. I was watching the news a while ago and they were taking a tour of the house that ppl from the cult wereliving in and talking about how weird they were because they had nothing on their walls like “we” do. What does that have to do with anything? And then there was one journalist who wouldn't stop dissing up the men from the cult..which to me is like...who asked you what you thought...REPORT THE FACTS!!

It would seem that the reason the media had to make the cult seem all weird was so the public would agree that there was in fact a need to remove all the children from the cult since there was a problem with where they'd been living.

And like Brandon said: “Most of them are not being forced. The ones that are being forced get too much attention in the media and make them all look bad.” Plus, all the times that I've watched the news, I actually haven't seen anyone who can say that they've been forced to marry an older man...like where's the proof?

And the fact that all the kids from the cult were removed on the basis of one phone call that supposedly came from a 16 year old girl who they have never found, is kinda dumb.

]ΛvΛЯіччΛ said...

A few days ago, it was reported that some kids have been returned to their families because “an appeals court ruled the state had no right to take the children into custody “
Read about it here:
http://www.babble.com/CS/blogs/strollerderby/archive/2008/05/26/Children-of-Polygamy-Cult-Returned-to-Parents.aspx

On the news, the picture that they kept repeating was that of a middle-aged woman with a middle-aged man holding a young girl. They were a part of the cult and the woman didn't seem like she was too young for the man.

lauren! said...

On the news the other day, I saw three polygamist women being interviewed. They insisted that they do not “force” any girl to get married but rather wait until she is ready and chooses herself. That is basically all they would say. When asked other questions such as, “how old were YOU when you got married” they avoided the question completely. They just rambled on about how every girl chooses her future for herself without pressure from others.

They complain about getting a “bad wrap” from the media..but common!! What do they expect when they don’t answer questions and just gaze at the camera with their dreary eyes?

briar. said...

in the FOX news video, the male reporter asked when rosie was married, her response had nothing to do with the question, she started rambling on how she didnt want to leave but armed men made her leave the ranch. there was something odd about it...idk maybe its just me.

anyways...
14 year old GIRLS shouldnt make the decision on marriage like theyre way too young. alhough i dont agree with polygamy, its there way of life and their choising to live this way...and no one can do anything about it.

the US vs. Them is totally relevant in this, non-polygamists cannot judge polymagmy if they dont know all the facts. just because it may seem 'abnormal' to many people it doesnt make it so.
i completely agree with lauren, the polygamist 'cult' isnt breaking any laws with a 14 year old and a 50 year old marrying.

and omg if someone ever took my child away i would loose it! they had no right on taking those children.

like javariyya said the news should only report the facts and stop being so opinionated!@ not all polygamists are forcing others to marry them, so quite it labeling all of them becasue of a few. no one should hate a whole group of people when only a few are doing something wrong. i think everyone has heard that line before but we really have to start following it.

kelsey =] said...

I definitely agree with briar. This is very relevant to the US vs. THEM lesson that we learned, non-polygamists can't judge what polygamists do if they want to do something then it's fine. But I still think polygamy is very disturbing. Also, i agree with javarriya about the news, they need to stop thinking that everyone doesn't want polygamy, if it's in their religion, then they don't know nay better.

LBurton24 said...

I agree with everyone who says this is similar to the "Us vs Them". Despite hearing about and viewing stories on the polygamy, no one should negatively judge them until they know all of the facts and what exactly their intention is.
I'm sure people in the polygamist community believe that people in our society are different and should be doing thins that are not right.

i believe it is wrong for the news to take the one side, then just assume everyone else and everyone watching agrees with them. This is just another example of how the news media can influence decisions.. These people need to start finding things out for themselves, rather than "beleive what they see"

Sonya!AtTheDisco said...

Well..why are we suddenly talking about it now..the is cult has been here since forever. why did we wait until someting happened? In my religion we only have one spouse but in other religions they have more. How come we don't critize the other religions if we think they are so wrong? We are basically choosing different religions or this case cults to pick on. Wheres the girl who called the police? Why cant we talk to her?
What if we switched the girls to guys and the guys to girls..so what if women had more then one husband? would we feel differently?

Nickie said...

Firstly, I want to thank all of you for being so commentive to my blog, I now see that many of you feel similar to the way I feel about this. Now, like you have all seen, and I've said this many times, I agree with what the people who have posted since my last post are saying. I don't believe that they are forced to be married, but I do think that they have this only way of life to live, and nothing else has influenced them, so why should we judge? Like Sonya said, why are we only talking about it now? It's not like this cult was built yesterday and now we have a problem, it's been there forever. I also agree with Sonya about the genders being changed. WOULD we feel different if the men were forced to marry older women, who had multiple husbands? Personally, I would feel the same. I wouldn't feel outraged that MEN are forced to marry WOMEN. Im sure you all know where I stand on this, but if you dont, I say that this is their religion, and that "we" should leave "them" alone and let them practise their "religion".


Also, if anyone decides to come back since Jane's first post, I am going to update my blog with what Javariyya said about the children going back to their mothers and how the polygamists won the case. Mr. Puley pointed something else out to me, the government had a warrent to only check ONE HOUSE. BUT the government chose to "accept" the WHOLE CULT as ONE HOUSE, and Mr. Puley predicts that the Polygamist Wives will now sue the government for wrongly going about with their warrent, so check back on Monday for the new info!!!!

~Nick