Polygamy in America Essay

Polygamy in America Essay

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Polygamy is defined as “a marriage that includes more than two partners.” There are different types of polygamy, these include: polygyny, where a man has multiple wives, polyandry, in which a woman has multiple husbands, and group marriage, where a family consists of multiple husbands and wives. Of these different types of polygamy, polygyny is definitely the most popular of the three. In America, the practice of any form of polygamy is illegal and due to this law, many adherents of the lifestyle stay hidden ("What is Polygamy?"). Polygamy became an issue in the United States in the year 1852 when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the LDS Church, made it so that plural marriage became a part of its religious doctrine. However, due to the storm of controversy that followed this movement, in 1890 the Mormon Church officially abandoned the practice. The Mormon’s who disagreed with the movement broke away from the Mormon Church and became known as Fundamentalist Mormons. Although the practice was almost unheard of in regions such as the Midwest, Northeast and South, in the Western portion of the United States, polygyny marriage is still prevalent. Those who are found to be practicing the belief are fined and sometimes are forced to split up with the rest of their families. For this reason many remain in the dark about their lifestyle, considering the severity of the consequences ("History of Fundamentalist Mormons"). However, recently many families have come out of hiding and proclaimed to the world that they are a practicing polygamist family, raising the question: is it right for the government to tell people who they can and cannot marry?
Polygamy can be found throughout the world and is thought to be ...

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...“Divorce Rates.” Divorce Rates. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Dec. 2011. .
Fletcher-Stack, Peggy. “Polygamy: Not as Rare as You May Think.” Beliefnet. Beliefnet, Inc., 2011. Web. 19 Dec. 2011. .
“History of Fundamentalist Mormons.” Wheat & Tares. Wheat and Tares, 2011. Web. 19 Dec. 2011. .
“Polygamy.” International Debate Education Association. IDEA Inc., n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2011. .
Quran. Polygamy in the Quran. James M. Arlandson, n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2011. .
“What is Polygamy?” Polygamy. N.p., 2011. Web. 19 Dec. 2011. .

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