Pay No Attention To That Slippery Slope Behind The Curtain

The Emory Law Journal has a symposium on the constitution and polygamous marriage. Some articles are on whether the government may criminalize adults entering into polygamous religious marriages, even when the parties aren’t claiming any legal rights stemming from such a marriage. I think such a criminal prohibition violates the Free Speech Clause. But other articles discuss whether there should be a constitutional right to government recognition of polygamous marriage, much as the court is now considering whether there should be a constitutional right to government recognition of same-sex marriage. The article that most squarely endorses this view is Ronald C. Den Otter’s “Three May Not Be a Crowd: The Case for a Constitutional Right to Plural Marriage”

—Eugene Volokh, “Emory Law Journal symposium on a constitutional right to polygamy” (HT: Jack Miller)

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  1. When lawyers start thinking through potential arguments to use in future court cases, you can bet that such cases are coming… as predicted by many of us.

  2. A member of Christian Concern warned us at a conference some five years ago that the Islamic powers are only waiting for enough countries to throw away the moral high ground by legalizing same sex marriage before using their financial muscle to push through their own agenda, which includes legalizing not only polygamy, but forced marriage, child marriage and other paedophilia (I remember seeing in a Penguin/Pelican edition of the Koran that whilst you can only have four wives, you may have your slaves as well, Allah is merciful), wife-beating, and honour klllings.

  3. In our free-sex society, how is polygamy (practically speaking) illegal? If a dozen women live in the same place as one man, and they all have sex and children, what law are they breaking? Since all of the children are his biological children, there should be no issue with them being claimed as dependents for tax purposes, as well as maybe one of the women.

    • Simply, as things are at the moment, he can only claim ONE of the women as a dependent for tax purposes. But even more importantly, he can only bring one woman from abroad into the country as his partner.

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