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Polygamy In America

The United States of America is a country of contrasts and contradictions. The most religious country accepted gay marriages for all 50 states not long ago and in some parts of the country people are even not against the polygamy. How did it happen? There are some parts of America, where the "plural marriage" seems like a perfectly normal practice and living with few wives or husbands is not considered to be against the law or offensive. The routes of this phenomena are in the complicated and multinational history of this country, where, it seems, everything is possible.

LDS Church and Mormons

Polygamy became an important topic in America thanks to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), where the plural marriage was the part of the official doctrine. After a huge legal conflict in the 1890s, the LDS church president of that time announced the church's official abandonment of the practice. However, the practice of living with more than one spouse is still practiced by Mormon fundamentalists in the western USA, Canada, and Mexico. Is it legal and how other people react to this?

Legality of polygamy in America

In Mexico a "plural marriage" is forbidden and in Canada living with few spouses is an offense practice, which is punishable by up to 5 yeas in prison. A little bit better situation is in the USA, where up to 40,000 polygamy families live in Salt Lake City (Utah) and few thousands of them in Centennial Park (Arizona). These people call themselves Mormon Fundamentalists and practice polygamy, living in the closed community. Some of them also live in Mexico and Canada, but the most loyal attitude to these unusual families are only in these few American States.

An experience of living in a polygamy families

Most of the time Mormon families are really huge: one family can consist of one husband, few wives and dozens of children. Few years ago National Geographic documented a life of an 88-years old man with 5 wives, 46 children, and 239 grandchildren living as a one family in Salt Lake City community. The photos show Mormon girls in long dresses, big family pictures, wooden hand-made swings for kids and how all of them were impressed by fireworks they saw for the first time in their life. Needless to say, that Mormon families have some pretty severe rules (especially about the marriage), but most of the family members have phones already, their own computers and driving licenses, which is a big step, especially for women.

Not long ago one girl from a polygamy family in Utah told the whole world what it's like to grow up in a family with 13 kids and three mothers. Her words met the huge response all over the world. She said that although her family seemed content, there are much pain and jealousy. Is it possible for people to live in such community and have few mothers you treat the same? How do you feel yourself having dozens of brothers/sisters and a father you almost never see? Eventually, that girl refused to be a part of it and right now she accepted another religion and live happily in an ordinary marriage, but thousand of girls have no chance or even desire to change their life and religion. "We are happy living this way" - told one of the Mormons to the press and many more of them would tell the same.

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