Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Day 6 of the Canadian Case

Thanks again to Nancy Mereska of Stop Polygamy in Canada for being there in person and keeping us up to date on the latest. Great job, Nancy!

November 30, 2010—Day 6, Challenging the validity of Professor Angela Campbell’s research

First things first—Chief Justice Robert Bauman still reserved making any ruling on the publication of the witness videos because the person who brought the complaint wants to address the court re her concerns about privacy and how she didn’t know the videos would be published by the media. She will be doing this via telephone in the morning, Wednesday, Dec. 1, which will be Day 7 of the hearing.

The issue today was the validity of Professor Angela Campbell’s research on the community of Bountiful, B.C. The lawyers for the AGBC, CAG, and Stop Polygamy in Canada brought to bear questions addressed to Professor Campbell on her qualifications to do the study on Bountiful; and, her generalizations.

In short, because I have nine pages of notes. Brian Samuels led the questioning of Prof. Angela Campbell (Brian & Prof. C, respectively in this report)

Brian: Wanted to know if Prof. C’s study had a social research aspect; and, if it did was Prof. C schooled in sociology, anthropology, ethnology or psychology.

Prof. C: Cited articles she had published but had to admit that she had no schooling in the disciplines Brian posed.

Brian: Wanted to know how Prof. C had decided to undertake the study on Bountiful.

Prof. C: Told how she was contacted by three or four women in Bountiful after they read an article she wrote—“Wives’ tales. . .” that reflected on research in Bountiful, then she applied to the SSHRC for funding to do the study.

Brian: Wanted to know if she used any methodology in deciding on the number of people male or female she would interview.

Prof. C: Admitted that she had no particular method, that she was not familiar with research methodology and she hired a sociology graduate student to assist her.

Brian: Wanted to know the nature of the questions she used and how did she arrange contacts with the women she interviewed in Bountiful?

Prof. C: Admitted there was no specific structure for the questions she used; and, said her contacts came via word-of-mouth through the original women who contacted her to do a study.

Brian: Did an overview of Prof. C’s qualifications to undertake such a study—Prof. C has no academic knowledge of anthropology, sociology, psychology or ethology; never taken any courses in qualitative methodology. He showed Prof. C some textbooks that to me, represented sociology research methodology 101. I studied one of the books years ago in my sociology studies.

Prof. C: Admitted she was interested in a “case study.”

Brian: More questions about structured and unstructured questions. Asked Prof. C if she believed that qualitative research produces better data.

Prof. C: Yes.

Brian: What is the sociological definition of a cult?

Prof. C: I don’t know. She gave her own opinion of what a cult is and said she did not believe Bountiful is a cult.

Brian: Do you know the sociological research methods for doing a study on a cult?

Prof. C: No.

Brian: Are you familiar with the software used for qualitative research?

Prof. C: No.

Brian: Can you deduct a broad conclusion based on your research?

Prof. C: No. I can’t.

Brian: Showed her a copy of the “International Journal of Qualitative Research” and asked her if she was familiar with or had ever read it.

Prof. C: No.

Brian: Referred to paragraphs in her affidavit where she had made generalizations.

Also, during Brian’s interrogation, he wanted to know if Prof. C believed that everything the women told her was the truth; and, if she ever spoke to any male leaders in Bountiful.

Prof. C said that “yes” she believed what the women told her was true; and, “no” she did not ever talk to any male leaders in Bountiful. Also, the women she spoke to were from the Winston Blackmore group. She did not know if the women she spoke to were all the wives of the same man or not.

Leah Greathead from the AGBC’s office really grilled Prof. C on her generalizations throughout her affidavit. In a couple of places Prof. C said that what was written was not what she meant and reworded the paragraphs on the stand!

L.G. The reason for your interviews was to give voice to the women you interviewed?

Prof. C: Yes.

L.G. You wanted to avoid putting words in their mouths?

Prof. C: Yes.

Then Leah Greathead went through the redacted transcripts of the interviews citing time after time where Prof. C provided leading questions to the women she interviewed. (Redacted transcripts are transcripts where the identity of the interviewee or anything that might identify them is blacked out!)

L.G.: Wanted clarification on the place where Prof. C asked the women of Bountiful if they were not able to contact resources outside the community because of fear of being stigmatized.

The answer in the transcripts was that the women said they were not afraid to go to outside resources—concluding that services are accessible to the residents of Bountiful.

Prof. C: Yes.

L.G.: Wanted to know if Prof. C conducted all of the interviews.

Prof. C: Yes.

L.G.: Read on in the transcripts—Bountiful woman, “. . .And people have always been so good to us.”

L.G.: Another page: “All of the residents can access general services without fear of doing so. . .”

At one point Prof. C had to admit that “services” meant grocery shopping, etc., not mental health, reproductive health, psychological or general family services.

L.G.: Concluded that Prof. C’s submissions should be dismissed in their entirety.

Lawyer for the Canadian AG: (did not get his name, but his grandmother was sitting behind me and pointed out to me that “he is my grandson!”—now that is a special fan club!)—LCAG

LCAG: That there is an admissibility issue. Prof. C’s evidence is not admissible because she was given a theme outside her frame of expertise. She makes sweeping conclusions that could be reversed on appeal. We must be cautious re expert witnesses in that they submit evidence within the framework of their area of expertise. The court must distinguish between the true knowledge of an expert as opposed to a “generalist” who lacks the credentials. The expert must be involved in the studies surrounding the field in which they give evidence. E.g. the scientific community. He cited passages in Prof. C’s affidavit where Prof. C does not even know if the individuals she interviewed even spoke the truth to her about their life in Bountiful; where Prof. C engages in speculation; where Prof. C’s conclusions cannot be a true representative of the women living in Bountiful; that Prof. C went into conversation with her interviewees re the criminalization/decriminalization of polygamy.

Karen Horsman, lawyer for the BCAG:

K.H. reviewed the number of tours Prof. C conducted in Bountiful--two—one in 2008 and one in 2009 of six and seven days, respectively with one-half day at each end was for travel so actually, five and six days for research work.

K.H.: Told the court that Prof. C’s submission does not carry any weight because of her lack of expertise. What in Prof. C’s affidavit gives her any elevated status that she can submit an expert report? That she is not qualified to make the generalizations she did. Prof. C reworded her own affidavit in her testimony. Also, contradicted her own transcripts.

Tim Dickenson, lawyer for the Amicus, rose to say that excerpts are taken from documents that are cloaked in confidentiality.

K.H. said that paragraphs would have to be completely reworded to mean women in Bountiful have difficulty accessing mental health services, etc. because Prof. C had said in her testimony that services meant grocery shopping, etc.

Robert Deane gave the summation for Stop Polygamy in Canada:

R.D.: Stop Polygamy in Canada objects to Prof. C as a qualitative researcher. That her generalized opinion expressed as a result of her interviews is inadequate. Cited an Ontario Court of Appeal case where there was a test to assess the reliability of expert witnesses:

1) What extent has the witness honoured their area of expertise within the evidence they took to “study”/submit to the court.

2) Is there an investigative discourse analysis—importance of peer review throughout the process. Prof C did not have a step by step peer review process.

3) Prof. C is not a sociologist, anthropologist, ethnologist, or psychologist. She didn’t spend an extended length of time in Bountiful in order to carry out an qualitative study.

4) Prof. C admitted that her interviews cannot be generalized at all—other than related to the 22 women she interviewed.

T.D. rose to say that Prof C provided the “only empirical data on the FLDS”.

Craig Jones rose to say that Prof. Joseph Henrich provides data in his second affidavit. (I was thinking and wondering why no one mentioned Dr. Larry Beall—a star in studying polygamy groups!)

T.D. rose to point out that both Prof. Rebecca Cook and Prof. Nicholas Bala who are expert witnesses for the BCAG and Stop Polygamy in Canada cited Prof. C’s work in their research papers.

His Lordship Chief Justice Robert Bauman ruled that Professor Angela Campbell’s affidavits and evidence are being admitted.

Note: the question will be—How much weight will Chief Justice Bauman give to this research with anonymous participants in the final analysis?

Nancy Mereska, President

Stop Polygamy in Canada

Day 5 of the Canadian Case

Thank you, Nancy Mereska with Stop Polygamy in Canada for these terrific updates!

Day 5

Background: It appears that one of the witnesses whose video (excerpt) interview was appended to the Vancouver Sun article last week has lodged a complaint saying they did not know the video interviews were going to be broadcast publicly. The videos have been distributed to several media and the Regina Leader-Post has posted some on their website.

Craig Jones argued that these witnesses have volunteered. There are 14 affidavits with attached videos. The Court considered the videos to be personal information. There was no permission obtained to broadcast the videos. Copies have been distributed to several other media. No advance notice was given to the participants that the material would be broadcast. Mr. Burnett (lawyer for the Vancouver Sun) takes the position that access equals publication rights. The property of the exhibit remains with the owner of the exhibit. There has to be a distinction between access and publication.

Chief Justice Robert Bauman interjected and said “. . .when they are filed in the Court, they are the property of the Court.”

Mr. Craig Jones disagreed and cited the Dagenais/Mentuk ruling in which it was said that there should be generous access to evidence; the court should be fully open to the public; the media should be able to describe what happened in the video. Craig made reference to the CBC ruling of earlier in the week. He said that the video supporting evidence is coming before the court as an exhibit. Should the content be downloaded to the internet with unregulated and unlimited use?

Chief Justice Bauman said he made ruling on CBC application to video the proceedings relating to the press broadcasting evidence before it is processed in court. He is not ruling on any suggestion that the press misrepresented itself.

Mr. Craig Jones argued that we are on the cusp of an age where we may have attempts by parties to put in competing video evidence and have it published. . .There has to be a distinction between a person’s videoing their evidence and it being broadcast to the world. No permission was given for this.

Chief Justice Bauman reiterated that evidence is property of the court.

Mr. Jones said that the court is the custodian of ecidence. There is an accountability question. What is the extent of public access? Is there re-victimization of those who are volunteering their evidence?

Chief Justice Bauman asked if not the onus is on the person supplying the information to apply for a publication ban? Where does the law say that the media have to ask permission to publish evidence they have in hand?

Mr. Jones brought up “privacy.”

Chief Justice Bauman said that the Vancouver Sun has lawfully obtained copies of the evidence. That no conditions were inposed on the Vancouver Sun and use of the videos. Here we are doing the expo facto—after the fact—argument.

Craig Jones said that there was no notice given to the witness. Where is the fairness in that? The witness must be able to consent to being broadcast. The media have access but not publication rights to videos. Any authorized recording may be used for another purpose but the applicant must obtain permission of those being videoed. The affidavit of Karen Horsman speaks to the difficulty of getting permission.

Chief Justice Bauman wanted to know the distinction between video and actual appearance. Is that the question.

Craig Jones said that the privacy issue is the issue. These witnesses should not be penalized because they willingly assisted the court.

There was discussion of other types of “media” evidence appended to affidavits such as books, research papers and copyright issues. I lost track because, of course, I am not familiar with the court decisions involved, etc.

Mr. Burnett argued before the court on behalf of the Vancover Sun. He argued that the person who brought the complaint has been very open about their involvement with the FLDS culture in the past even appearing the the Dr. Phil show and being quoted in various media. This person has talked openly on other media about under-aged girls being married, even revealing the number of wives an FLDS leader had.

Mr. Burnett went on to say that if a publication ban is put in place on the videos, certain factors have to be weighed such as if there is some rist to a fair trial with open publication of evidence; what is the reality of how publication will affect the witness; the privacy argument must be addressed; and, that openness and transparency in the court is important especially in a case of national significance such as this.

Mr. Jones rebutted with the fact that no one can underestimate the value of seeing and hearing a witness. All discretionary orders denying freedom of the press must meet a two-part test: absence of harm and consent rules. He emphasized that the witnesses were not informed that excerpts of their video testimonies were being broadcast.

Chief Justice Bauman said he would reserve his judgment until Monday.

Mr. Jones asked if he could make an interim injunction on any further publishing of the videos.

His Lordship Chief Justice Robert Bauman said he was not going to make any interim orders.

So, given that court does not resume until Tuesday, at 10:00, in room 55 of the Supreme Court of British Columbia, we will have to wait and see what the ruling will be.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Relativism needs a shakedown

Polyamorists decry anti-polygamy law

Canada’s law against polygamy contravenes the religious rights of a polygamous group and was originally enacted to criminalize a religious practice, says a lawyer for the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Read full story Here.

The Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association defines polyamory as the practice of having emotionally intimate, sexual relationships within groups of three or more people. Conjugal polyamory refers to polyamourous relationships in which three or more of the parties live in the same household.

Random thoughts...

Relativism needs a shakedown. Just because you want to be all flowery and non judgmental doesn't give you the moral right to condemn children to a "lifestyle", which will undoubtedly expose them to higher rates of abuse, neglect, poverty and especially molestation.

Every civilized society has a right to decide how they want children protected. It's not hateful or judgmental to say to someone, "No, you can't do that because we know it harms children; and if we find you doing it, we will put you into a jail."

That's why it's called civilization, because the law holds people to a standard of behavior towards it's weakest members, namely children, the elderly and the infirm.

If Canada throws it's children to the sexual predator wolves here, then G-d help their civilization, for eventually they will have none.

No Justification or Explanation

Criminal sanction against polygamy offends guaranteed rights, FLDS tells Vancouver hearing

By Daphne Bramham, Vancouver Sun

"As for former members who will testify to abuses and bad experiences, the opening statement makes clear that the church will not "seek to justify or explain their mistreatment."

Read more Here.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Muslim or Mormon Just SAY NO!

Homa Arjomand

This Conference will emphasize on the effects of globalization of political Islam on Women’s Rights, the question with polygamy, the Niqab and Honour Killing. As well as the problems of legal pluralism and cultural relativism with respect to women’s rights and discussion on separation of religion from the State.

In order to cover all these issues, I will start my speech with a case of a victim of polygamy, child trafficking as well as forced and arranged marriages in Canada; the obstacles and challenges they face with no hope to overcome them unless we progress our laws and regulations to one secular law for all and alter the legal pluralism and cultural relativism for integration.

In the following case, some changes are made to protect the client’s identity:

Farideh, at the age of 14, was sent to Pakistan with her mother and uncle in the summer of 2001. She understood that she was going for a vacation but soon after their arrival, she found out that she was to become the second wife of a clerk. She said from the time her uncle’s wife told her about the marriage to the night of her wedding, she cried and tried to burn herself. But she was left with no choice and it took 9 years before she was able to return to Canada at the age of 23. By this time, she had two sons 6 and 3 years.

Now her father is pushing her to sponsor her husband. Farideh indicated she would rather die than sponsor her abuser. In a Risk Assessment Check List, she specified the following abuse: pushed, pulled, grabbed, slapped, punched and kicked, objects were thrown at her. And in the section OTHER she described in one full page how she was chained to the ground with her baby in her arms to care for, without food and water for hours. All this was while she was breast feeding her baby. She also described how her husband knocked out two of her front teeth and broke her nose.

In the part of the Sexual Abuse portion, Farideh indicated there was persistent pressure to consent to rape, and she described how she was beaten while her husband performed sex and then he would throw a glass of holy water over her to purify her. All this abuse was to make her more submissive.

Farideh returned to Canada because her mother was dying.

At the hospital, she met a nurse in which she claims changed her life. She was told by her family members that she cannot go against Allah’s wish because Allah was testing her, and her husband is her destiny.

History of Farideh’s background:

Farideh was born in Ontario and had never been outside of her community. Farideh never had any friends outside of her culture even when she was attending public school. After school, she attended a Madreseh school which is an Islamic School. She never participated in any of the school’s activities, never attended any field trip; never went to a movie theatre, never wore pink, red or purple coloured clothes even though those were her favourite colours. Her biggest dream was to attend her graduation when she finished grade eight. And that never happened.

The obstacle Farideh faces:

Farideh will not be able to pay market rate for rent and she will not be qualified for subsidized housing as her children are not Canadian. She will not be qualified for subsidized day care for the same reasons. She is supported financially by Ontario Work which is social welfare but her financial support will be discontinued if she does not resolve the child custody matter soon. She will not be eligible for legal aid certificate in order to hire a lawyer as the abuser is living outside of Canada. And soon if she does not find a way out of this international legal system she will be prosecuted for abducting her own children.

Social obstacles:

Farideh will be forced to distance herself from all members of her community, relatives and her family for the safety of her children and herself which means she will have to leave behind all she had known in her childhood and early youth. She will be disowned by her family members as her action to seek help for separation will not be taken lightly by the members of her community. There are other hidden burdens that she needs to overcome, because of her action: no-one in the community would be willing to arrange any marriage with her siblings. Her brothers might be able to marry a girl from the community but there is no chance for her sisters.

Among members of the community, Farideh is considered a rebellious, a very bad example for all the other girls. However despite, all these obstacles, Farideh has made up her mind to go for separation and save the future of her children, with no money and community support.

Regarding the legal barrier:

If Farideh is forced by the legal system to send the children back to Pakistan, then she needs to make a huge decision. If she returns back with the children, she will face a harsh punishment, not only from her husband but also from the legal system in Pakistan. She knows there are women in Pakistan whose noses were cut off by their husbands or their father, or have no ears because they were not obedient or did not
honour the family wishes. She knows in Pakistan murderers can get out of prison with a small amount of money.

Farideh will be facing a long painful legal battle. Her situation is not as simple as child custody, child support and divorce. In her case the husband is living in Pakistan, he is not Canadian and Canadian law does not apply to him at all. The children were born in Pakistan. Her marriage was performed in Pakistan. Therefore nothing much can be done at the Ontario Family Court system.

Farideh is not the only Canadian child of misfortune. There are countless other Canadian children whose civil rights are violated and no-one has ever been put in the spot light for this violation of children’s rights.

In Farideh’s case, no one has been charged for what they have done to this child: that she was taken to Pakistan at very young age and forced to marry and live in a polygamist relationship: that she was left there with a man more than three times her age to be sexually rapped, physically injured and go under tremendous torture.

Our expectation in Canada should be for the Canadian government to arrest and jail Farideh’s father and all the ones involved in crimes committed against Farideh, at least under Child Trafficking Act as shamefully there is no criminal act for forced and arranged marriages or early child bride or even polygamy in Canada.

But even with the Child Protection Act in place, the system has failed Farideh for not protecting her rights, for not questioning her parents upon their return to Canada about their missing child; after all they went out of the country with the child and returned without her.

The system managed to fail her without questions asked by any of its concerned citizens. No-one from Children Aid Society ever knocked at her parents’ house and asked about the missing Farideh, no school teacher ever questioned the authorities about all those missing children, among them Farideh.

The question is how the government of Canada could neglect Farideh and all the other children like her while there is the Child Protection Act in place? How could the Child’s Civil Rights be totally violated in the presence of all involved members of society and involved authorities but no-one speaks out against it?

It is certainly not an error in the legal documents.

The violations of children’s civil rights was done simply by implementing a legal policy in such a way that a horrendous crime would be considered an affront to humanity, and the responsibility of the State to enforce this policy. Canada has put in place legal pluralism and cultural relativism which is totally in contradiction
with the Universal Rights of the Child and Freedom of Individuals. Under this policy minority rights and religious rights over take the individual rights.

So crimes against Farideh became invisible and not a crime at all. It is consider part of Farideh’s culture and religion to be taken out of school forcefully, cross the boarders, pass five oceans to her parents’ country and forced to marry so young, in a polygamist relationship. It has been said to the members of the greater society that under no circumstances, under Child Protection Act, this harsh and inhuman life
journey of Farideh could have been prevented. And we are supposed to believe what we have been told by the legal system.

This unbearable cruelty to children and women should not be tolerated and must be condemned strongly. Zero tolerance is needed to put in place for all repressive laws and regulations. We need to come forward in full force against any policies that pursues cultural and social segregation, and against any practice that undermines the right and well-being of the child.

No doubt when people hear about the case of Farideh, humanity will rise up and help will come from every avenue. I am convinced that Farideh’s legal problem will be resolved if not by “lawyers without boarders” then by other kind and caring individuals who have heart and compassion for humanity. But this is not the
main aim of this conference.

The aim is to help all the vulnerable children and women living in these isolated communities, these communities that are surrounded by thick invisible walls. These walls were built there from the moment the legal pluralism and cultural relativism were implemented in Canada. The federal government adopted multiculturalism as its official policy in 1971, to the disadvantage of women and children, and patronized
more the religious and ethnic groups. The Multiculturalism Act was passed by Parliament and proclaimed in 1988. This broad, unclear act needs to be amended immediately before the life and safety of more women and children are put in jeopardy.

The reality is that these invisible walls needs to be demolished and replaced by one secular progressive law for all. Only then can the act of Child Protection be effective and no child will be mistreated.

Right now under the legal pluralism and cultural relativism and under the name of freedom of religion, the Mormon sect can openly engage in polygamy where children as young as 14 can become the wives of one man (as many as 180 wives, I was told or even more in order to become part of the God) and political Islam can find enough legal ground to establish Sharia law in Canada. It was not too long ago that we challenged Sharia Court in Ontario and managed to overcome faith based arbitration for family disputes. That means we closed one gate only but there are many other gates open allowing 7th century traditions to hunt and hurt women and children. And it is not practical to fight these violations one at the time.

Under this policy, women and children are left at the mercy of the sheik, imams, priests, rabbi, old traditions, 7th century customs and religious institutions. As a result there are two or more sets of values and rights in Canada, one being Canadian law and the other being the law of the sect or cult of a community. The only way it can be described is “ a state within state”. Women and girls are forced to comply with those laws and regulations and the ones who resist as Farideh did, will face harsh punishment. If they are lucky, they might be flogged, raped, pulled out of school, separated from all their siblings, disowned by community and family members or forced to marry, but the misfortunate ones will face death by honour killing, if not by stoning. All these are happening in our back yard.

One must not fail to remember, the reasons why these young brave girls were slaughtered in the name of honor killing is because they all refused the interference of religion and the backward culture in their private
lives. They were at the forefront of the battle for individual rights verses collective /(minority rights) or lets say religious rights.

Aqsa Parvez 16 in Mississauga, Khatera Haidery 20 in Calgary, Aminat Magomadova, 14 in Calgary, Jaswinder Kaur Sidhu 25 known as Jassi, in British Columbia, Rona Amir Mohammad and her three stepdaughters, Zainab Shafia (19), Sahari Shafia, (17) and Geeti Shafia (13) from Kingstown Ontario. All these victims have been tried and sentenced to death according to family beliefs and culture, and murdered by members of their own family, for not honouring the rules of inhuman traditions and culture. These killings are shamefully honoured, respected and guarded legally, and financially supported by the Canadian government under the policy of multiculturalism and cultural relativism.

These brave girls wished to control their own way of life and lost their lives for what members of the greater society have been benefiting for the past centuries. The most basic rights, the right to individual independence, the right to the necessities of a normal life, the right to have protection of body and mind
against any violation, the right to education, the right to socialize and have a social life. Their thirst for these basic rights put them in a death role by the culture and religion of their parents. And we as members of the greater society kept our distance and did nothing to protect their civil rights.

The reality is that honour killing, polygamy, child bride, forced marriage and arranged marriage and stoning have great ties with the growth of the anti-women culture and religious movement, in particular Islamic movements in the West. As soon as the advocators of this movement find the tiniest room to penetrate into legal system, more women will be subjected to violence and brutally slaughtered for refusing to follow the traditions of their families’ culture. It is hurtful to say that Canada under the policy of multiculturalism and cultural relativism has legally provided political Islam and all other organized religious sects, lots of ground
to grow.

It is time to stand up firm and build a political campaign that promotes a political solution. The banner of this campaign must be integration and the concept of the equal and universal rights for all citizens, irrespective of their country of origin, race, gender or religion; verses legal pluralism and cultural relativism.
Only then we can end all these horrendous crimes against women and children living in these communities.

In response to question of the Niqab and Burqa one needs to tie these two types of veils to rise of political Islam. These types of veils are used for advertising and promoting the agenda of political Islam movement, in the West and so far have served its political desire and political needs.

In fact these types of veils have become the banner of Islamists movement.

It should not come to anyone’s surprise to witness not only niqab and burqa but also the hijab being burnt by women at the forefront of every demonstration in countries where political Islam gained power. Women have every right to see this piece of cloth as a tool of oppression as they have witnessed it, lived with its degrading laws and suffered a great deal.

They know the only way out is to make religion stay a private matter for individuals, separate from the State. Not water it down.

The Niqab existed in only marginalized the Arabian Gulf region and came to light after Islamic movement organized itself as state in Iran. The only difference is, back then it was enforced upon women only in a small uneducated isolated rural area, but now these types of veils are willingly adopted by advocators of the Islamic movement, the ones who enjoyed sitting on benches of universities and successfully achieved a degree that could not have been possible if there was not an on going struggle for social progress, freedom, equality between men and women and justice for all, at that time of their study, they were not wearing niqab or any other hijab as political Islam was not yet in power, therefore no recognition of this flag
was needed then.

Wearing Niqab or Burqa has nothing to do with their Islamic faith. Niqab or Burqa is a flag of Islamists on rise for the expansion of Political Islam on the international arena, socially, culturally, and religiously on a macro level. And for it, they need to stay in the spot lights of the media every day if not for every hour of the day, the Islamist’s existence needs to be acknowledged, in every household either by act of terrorism globally or by the outcry over the caricatures of Mohammad or over the halah meat at elementary schools cafeteria, or upholding Islamic fashion under the Eiffel tower, or over space to pray during lunch hours at
schools, universities and work places or else the followers of this movement will stop the traffic in the heart of France and England and line up to pray. Of course in all these mocking shows, the niqabist will be seen in first rows. And when they realize there is no more audience, then it is time to show up at public places
such as schools, courts or even at election polls in various countries dressed in full niqab and if they are confronted then the niqabists file a complaint with the Human Rights Tribunal. We need to ban Niqab totally from our society, the same way we banned the fascist flag.

As for other forms of the veil (hijab), women should have rights to wear them or not. However when it comes to public sectors such as schools, courts, hospitals, libraries, police stations, the veil should be prohibited totally.

The Islamic veil in any shapes and forms must be banned for children under the age of 18 and prohibition of veiling children must become part of child protection act.

Banning the niqab will certainly push back political Islam and that will help the women’s movement to promote their progressive agenda which is advancing total equality in every avenue possible.

*Thank you Dr. Susan Stickevers for forwarding this amazing speech. GO CANADA!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Day 2 in Canada

I've just received this fabulous bulletin from Nancy Mereska with Stop Polygamy in Canada!
Please take the time to read the great notes on the case she is taking, and the great case Canadian Prosecutors are making in educating their court and the public on the other relic of barbarism, polygamy.

For a look at the Republican Party's stance go Here

Resolved: That the Constitution confers upon Congress sovereign powers over the Territories of the United States for their government; and that in the exercise of this power, it is both the right and the imperative duty of Congress to prohibit in the Territories those twin relics of barbarism — Polygamy, and Slavery.

From Nancy,
Dear Network:

Re: Day 2, Reference Trial of s. 293 to test its constitutionality (s. 293 being the law that bans the practice of polygamy in Canada

Today AGBC’s attorney Mr. Craig Jones finished his opening statement. Some highlights:

· Polygamy can be compared to Slavery of the United States

· The purpose of the polygamy law has always been to address the harms associated with polygamy.

· Original incest legislation was enacted perhaps millennia before we understood the genetic implications of incest.

· Most challengers of s. 293 propose the broadest possible definition; grey areas include same sex multiple partners, polyandry (rare), and polyamory claiming that they practice “good” polygamy.

· Polygamy must be restricted to polygyny and not polyandry, polyamory, etc.

· Almost all of the harms that we are going to demonstrate are the harms of polygyny.

· Legislators often use a general term to mean a specific term; e.g. polygamy = polygyny; laws about animal abuse—animal does not mean human.

· Inherently harmful conduct does not justify claiming justification through s. 2(a) of the Charter (Canada’s Freedom of Religion Law)

· The Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association (CPAA) says s. 293 contravenes their right to group marriage. In fact, s. 293 focuses on marriage and consanguinity. S. 293 defines the crime of polygamy in terms of a relationship.

· Note: I’ve covered only two of five pages of notes thus far. I’m going to attempt to bring the Statement of the AGBC up to the blog!

Ms. Deborah Strachan, Attorney for the AG of Canada

· Parliament has a general interest to uphold the sanctions against polygamy: civil rights and liberties, it’s effect on society, its effect on individual women and children

· Polygamy presents physical, emotional and reproductive harm

· Polygamy leaves some young men with no opportunity to form a family

· Polygamy presents systemic problems on society

· If the court finds the reasonable apprehension of harm, then it must uphold the law.

· If Canada were to allow polygamy, it would be taking a very backward step. Countries around the world are generally against the practice of polygamy.

· The analysis relating to international views and norms will show a general regard for prohibiting the practice.

· Prof. Rose McDermot data from 172 countries will be presented.

· Definition of “conjugal union” in s. 293 is interpreted as a form of marriage not civilly recognized by law. “Conjugal union” incorporates an element of formality; a marriage-like ceremony.

· Canada’s law is in harmony with international law with respect to polygamy.

· The phenomenon of lost boys who are ejected one way or another and left on their own is a crime.

REAL Women

· REAL Women is a proponent of monogamy, 65,000 members strong.

· In the U.S. there is an absolute prohibition against addressing church doctrine. Courts will sometimes take it upon themselves to investigate particular practices.

· Will bring forth reports/studies from experts: Mohammed Fidel (Muslim) and Dr. Walter Scheidel

· FLDS presents a different story regarding freedom of religion.

· Are sexual predators actually “God’s chosen people”? (laughter in the courtroom)

· A finding that s. 203 is unconstitutional will be an insult to our democratic principles—“anti-democratic abomination.”

West Coast LEAF (LEAF=Legal Action Fund for Women)

· Submits that s. 293 is consistent with the Charter insofar as it is read down to apply to exploitation of relationships only.

· Reading down signifies maximizing the impact of the law.

Note: Although West Coast LEAF is funded in part by the Federal Government, it is not taking the position that s. 293 is constitutional. It wants the present law struck down and a new law written that will address only exploitation in polygamy. Stop Polygamy in Canada asserts that polygamy itself is exploitive. When a second “wife” (concubine, religious prostitute) comes into the picture, the rights of these women are denigrated and equality is thrown out the window. Their argument is moot. They are a body made up mostly of female attorneys. If they had wanted s. 293 “read down” they should have challenged the law a long time ago. Their argument has no place in the Reference.

Nancy Mereska, President

Stop Polygamy in Canada

Monday, November 22, 2010

The First Day in Canada

Here are links to two very good articles on the Canadian Supreme Court reference case that began today.

Comments welcome, of course!

One: The town polygamy built: B.C. says Bountiful shows need to ban multiple wives Here

Two: Canada's anti-polygamy laws go on trial

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Canadian Supreme Court Case Begins Monday

And here would be the "temple bed", complete with pop up crib railings, found outside tiny Eldorado, in Schleicher County. Doncha gotta wonder if Texas shared that tape of a twelve year old little girl being raped on that uh, alter, with the help of two of Warren's concubines?

Does society have to tolerate all the rituals of any religion to be practiced? Did Warren Jeffs have an inherent or intrinsic right to rape a little girl in the name of Joseph Smith or of his god?

I know the Office of the Attorney General here in Texas contributed over 50 lbs of written and electronic media evidence, in aid of Canada on this case, to show what was happening in the purest form of fundamentalist Mormon polygamy in North America.

Ron Skolrood, a constitutional lawyer in Vancouver, said
"Does the law address real social evils today? Or is it, as the challengers would say, an antiquated law that really has no relevance today?"

Read more: http://www.theprovince.com/life/Polygamy+trial+starts+tomorrow/3862116/story.html#ixzz15uNwIaEs

G-d Bless Canada!

I sure hope everyone is praying for their women.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sharia is a killer. Choose Life for Asia!

Mr. Asif Ali Zardari,
President of Pakistan
President House, Islamabad, PAKISTAN.

Spare the life of Asia Bibi

Dear Mr. President Zardari,

Americans Against Abuses of Polygamy joins local human rights organizations, international women’s groups and religious minorities in calling for Pakistan to urgently repeal its Blasphemy Laws. We also appeal to the authorities to guarantee the safety of Asia Bibi and her family from the rage of local extremists, as well as investigate the violent persecution of the Christian community in the Punjab.

Allowing Ms. Bibi to be killed for the crime of believing in a different G-d than Allah is completely barbaric and will do nothing to show Americans that Pakistan should share a place of honor within the civilized world. On the contrary, it will simply contribute to the growing awareness in America, and other freedom loving countries, that Islam itself is a danger and a threat to us all.

If you want us to believe that Islam is truly "a religion of peace", I would very respectfully suggest that your country take immediate measures to protect the life and property of religious minorities dwelling among you, starting with Ms. Bibi and her family.

We will be watching to see how serious your government is about stopping the spread of "radical Islam", or whether officials in your country are simply lying about their real intentions, while spreading this disease of barbaric hate and intolerance for minorities even more.


K. Dee Ignatin
Executive Director
Americans Against Abuses of Polygamy
Abuse is not a religion: http://tripleap.tumblr.com

Pakistan: Ensure safety of Asia Bibi and her family and repeal Pakistan’s Blasphemy Laws

The International Solidarity Network, Women Living Under Muslim Laws (WLUML) is deeply shocked that a court in Nankana Sahib, Pakistan, has sentenced a 45-year-old Christian woman, Asia Bibi, to death on the charge of having committed “blasphemy”. Although illiterate, she has been accused of denying the institution of prophet-hood by citing copious examples from the key texts of Islam.

We join local human rights organizations, international women’s groups and religious minorities in calling for Pakistan to urgently repeal its Blasphemy Laws. We also appeal to the authorities to guarantee the safety of Asia Bibi and her family from the rage of local extremists, as well as investigate the violent persecution of the Christian community in the Punjab.

Asia Bibi is a farm worker in a village of Ittanwali in Nankana, about 75 kilometres west of Lahore. By Asia Bibi’s own account, her women co-workers tried to force her to embrace Islam on 8 June, 2009. This led to a discussion on the religious beliefs of the two communities and following a heated exchange between her and three Muslim women, the complainant Qari Muhammad Sallam, with the testimonies of these women, lodged a First Information Report (FIR) on June 19, 2009, under sections 295-B and C of the Pakistan Penal Code. Both sections state punishment by life imprisonment or capital punishment. Following the judicial process, Asia Bibi was sentenced to death by an additional sessions court in Nankana district. Mrs Bibi was also ordered to pay a fine of 300,000 Pakistani rupees (£2,180). Now the family is appealing against the judgment in the Lahore High Court. SK Shahid, Asia Bibi's counsel, said that he has filed an appeal with the Lahore High Court against the lower court's judgment. "How can we expect from a non-Muslim to follow beliefs of the Muslims?" he asked. Various human rights groups are also likely to become party to the appeal, calling for the repeal of the judgment.

Mrs Bibi said that during the investigation held by Special Prosecutor Muhammad Amin Bokhari, she begged for pardon as she had never heard of the crime of blasphemy before. Mrs Bibi explained that she has not had access to a lawyer in jail and even on the day of her final verdict she was not accompanied by a lawyer. In court she was made to put a thumb print on the papers she was unable to read.

The Blasphemy laws have not only curtailed citizens’ freedom of expression, but have also been misused by violent religious extremists to commit grave acts of violence against others and to spread religious intolerance. In several cases the law has been used to settle personal scores and rivalries. Incidents of mob violence against non-Muslims, especially Christians, have also increased in this part of Punjab over the last few years, engineered by local extremists groups to give impetus to their religious and political base.

Blasphemy Laws in their present form were promulgated arbitrarily by the military dictator, Zia al-Huq, more than twenty years ago. Those who have worked to overturn false charges of blasphemy have themselves become the target of violence. A former Lahore High Court judge, Justice Arif Hussain Bhatti, was murdered by a religious extremist in 1996, reportedly because he acquitted a blasphemy case. A number of lawyers and journalists have also been harassed for defending people accused of blasphemy and campaigning against the Blasphemy Laws.

17 November 2010
Submitted on 11/17/2010

* South Asia
* Pakistan
* Fundamentalisms
* Blasphemy Laws
* Religious minorities
* WLUML/allies

We are asking you to take 5 minutes out of your day to write to the president of Pakistan and ask that the life of this woman be spared.

What you can do
Action needed:
Please send letters to:

Mr. Asif Ali Zardari,
President of Pakistan
President House, Islamabad, PAKISTAN.
Fax: +92-51-9207458 Email address:ppp@comsats.net.pk or publicmail@president.gov.pk

Mr. Yousaf Raza Gillani,
Prime Minister of Pakistan,
Prime Minister Secretariat, Islamabad, PAKISTAN.
Fax: + 92-51-9204632, 9221596 or Fax: +92-51-9206907

Mr. Shehbaz Sharif,
Chief Minister of Punjab,
Chief Minister Secretariat,
90 – Shahrah-e- Quaid-e-Azam,Lahore, PAKISTAN.

Mr. Syed Masood Kausar,
Federal Minister for Law and Justice,
Pak – Secretariat, Islamabad, PAKISTAN.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

So she called her imam...

This is an excellent essay written by Dr. Susan Stickevers, M.D. about one of her personal experiences with Muslim American polygamy, and reprinted here with her very kind permission.

35 year old Fatima thought she had it all.

As a proud naturalized American citizen who immigrated to the US at age 7, Fatima realized that she had accomplished more in the United States than she could ever could have as a woman in her native Pakistan.

As a physical therapist with a masters degree, she commanded a high salary - higher than her husband's. Her seven year old son excelled in school, she lived in a comfortable home in a suburb of NYC, and she considered herself to be happily married to a wonderful Moslem man named Muhammad whom she had met through a matchmaker 9 years ago.

Fatima felt secure about her career, her future, and her marriage - until Muhammad returned home from a visit to his family in Pakistan and announced that he had married his 17 yr old cousin. He announced to a stunned Fatima that he intended to send money from their joint bank account to Pakistan on a regular basis to provide for his new wife's financial support. Muhammad told Fatima that he eventually planned to bring his young bride to the US so that she could live with them.

Fatima was familiar with Sharia law regarding polygamous marriages. Muhammad was supposed to have asked her permission before he took a second wife.

He had not consulted her about his intention to marry a second time, so she called her imam. Her imam wearily informed her that she was one of many American Moslem women who had been duped by their husbands, and now there was nothing that could be done from a standpoint of Islamic law. Her imam informed her that she should simply learn to cope with Muhammad's decision to take another wife. Fatima found the prospect of sharing her husband, her home, and her finances with another woman to be intolerable.

Fortunately polygamy is illegal in NY State, and Fatima's attorney successfully used the threat of invoking NY anti - bigamy statutes to assist Fatima in gaining sole custody of her son, sole ownership of her home, and generous child support in her uncontested divorce settlement. Despite the fact that she has a substantial income which exceeds her husband's, Fatima is not required to make a monetary payment to Muhammad.

Susan M. Stickevers, MD

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Rebuke

I am reprinting this excellent article with the kind permission of the author, John. R. Llewellyn, who is a former AUB member and practicing polygamist.

By John R. Llewellyn

“Sister Wives” is a TLC cable television series, purporting to be a
“reality show” starring the flamboyant Kody Brown and his four plural
wives. The Browns live in a large house divided by three apartments
in the city of Lehi, 30 miles south of Salt Lake City. The forth wife
has a residence of her own a few blocks away.


The polygamous Brown family is what is known as Mormon
fundamentalists, a subculture of divisive Mormons who believe the
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was out of order when it
discontinued the “sacred” practice of polygamy in 1890. According to
Brigham Young, Joseph Smith’s successor, plural marriage was the most
sacred principle of Jesus Christ’s “gospel” and the Mormons were
commanded to live it and “raise up a righteous seed.” Joseph Smith is
the martyred prophet who founded Mormonism by authoring and publishing
the Book of Mormon which he claimed to have translated from gold
plates. The Church, founded in 1830, grew rapidly in a climate of
religious agitation, but was unpopular with mainstream, Protestant
Christianity. As a result the Mormons, as they were called, were
driven from Ohio, Missouri and Nauvoo, Illinois (but not without
cause). Joseph was assassinated in 1844. Brigham Young assumed
control of the Church and herded the (Latter-day) Saints to the Great
Basin (Utah Territory) arriving in 1847.

Joseph and his inner circle of acolytes, while denying that polygamy
was a Church doctrine, were secretly seducing the young attractive
women, including married women, with the notion that polygamy was
Jesus Christ’s preferred form of marriage. This breach of Christian
custom was justified by an alleged revelation Joseph Smith received
from Jesus Christ which is currently Section 132 of the LDS law book,
Doctrine & Covenants. The revelation is inherently coercive for it
threatens to damn all who reject plural marriage, and destroy
monogamous wives if they interfere with their husband’s quest for
plural wives. (See verses 6, 54, 64 and 65) In 1854, Brigham Young,
thinking he was safe from persecution shocked the world by revealing
that plural marriage was indeed Mormon dogma – and until 1890 all of
Mormonism revolved around plural marriage.

In the 1920s a fella name Lorin Woolley who is in essence the Father
of Mormon Fundamentalism, spun a story about John Taylor, the third
president and prophet of the LDS Church, alleging Taylor was visited
in 1886 by Jesus Christ and Joseph Smith. The two supernaturals
predicted the 1890 Manifesto, and commanded Taylor to keep plural
marriage alive until the Second Coming of Jesus. Taylor subsequently
held an eight hour meeting in which he set apart a group of Mormons
commanding them not to let a year go by without a child being born in
the New and Everlasting Covenant – i.e. Mormon polygamy. Strangely
enough, by 1920 which was the first time the 1886 yarn was heard,
Lorin Woolley was the only surviving member of the eight hour meeting.

In other words, all we have is Lorin Woolley’s word – but that was
good enough for a handful of frustrated, pious Mormons with vibrant

This first Mormon fundamentalist group concocted another incredible
tall-tale giving them priesthood authority so they could organize.
But as groups often do, as they grew they split over the question of
authority, and these splits eventually split – and the splits split
and more tall-tales were told until there are dozens of groups all
claiming to be the one and only group having authority and living all
of God’s laws. Kody Brown and company belong to the second largest of
these groups, Apostolic United Brethren, with alcoves in Old Mexico,
Utah, Arizona, Wyoming and Montana.

Sister Wives is supposed to be a reality show, but as is often the
case in Mormon fundamentalism what is purported to be reality is only
an illusion. The reality is that the run-of-the-mill polygamists are
not peacockish – they try to be as inconspicuous as possible, not
wanting to draw attention to themselves. Mormon plural marriage is a
sacred tenet, a principle you don’t flaunt. To do so is tantamount to
“casting pearls before swine.”

When Kody first announced that he and his wives were going to star in
a national televised realty show, we have it from reliable sources
that the leader of the group advised against it – which makes more
sense than the late claim they wanted to test the bigamy statute. The
history of Apostolic United Brethren, affectingly known as AUB, is
fraught with a history of key priesthood icons allegedly molesting
their children and key priesthood moguls involved in the theft of 1.5
million dollars. (See Hill vs Allred, Apostolic United Brethren, et.
al. AUB is currently paying off a 6 million dollar civil judgment)
Why take a chance of reopening that Pandora’s Box?

Mormon fundamentalists are stereotypical. Men with long hair are
frowned upon. Long hair generally symbolizes rebelliousness. If that
is the case with Kody, what is he rebelling against? Monogamy, the
law of the land, or the austerity of Mormon fundamentalism?

There have been other long-haired polygamists, Alex Joseph and Tom
Green for example, enticed by the intoxication of cameras, bright
lights and feigned loftiness, where narcissism shined through loud and
clear. Tom for example compared himself with some of Hollywood’s
notorious lovers. He was emboldened by the thought that he was
envied. Because media throughout the US, Europe and Japan sought him
out he thought he was a celebrity which gave him power. I am not
saying that Kody fits into this category, you decide. But Kody, his
wives and children obviously enjoy their singular, reality stardom.

Kody’s act is cleaner and more upbeat than Tom’s. Five of Tom’s
wives were adolescent girls when he took them as wives. Consequently
he was convicted not only of bigamy, but criminal non support and
child rape. What Kody and Tom have in common is long hair, a belief
in Mormon polygamy, and an apparent love of the lime light. I just
about forgot, when Tom was charged with bigamy he cut his hair so he
would look like just an ordinary nice guy.

The Lehi Police built a bigamy case against Kody and have submitted
it to the Utah County Prosecutor. Kody has retained a lawyer who
according to newspaper accounts thinks it is unwise and unjust to
prosecute Kody for it would be singling him out among thousands of
Mormon polygamists. So far the prosecutor’s office hasn’t made a
decision. I suspect it’s going to be hard for the Utah County
Attorney to decline prosecution for lack of evidence. But then, he
may do what the Utah Attorney General has done, ignore the Utah
Constitution and bigamy statute.

The media is not going to let this issue slide between the cracks.
The Utah Constitution specifically forbids polygamy. The bigamy
statute has been upheld twice by the Utah Supreme Court in Utah vs.
Tom Green and Utah vs. Rodney Holmes. A couple of years ago a man
and two women attempted to get a Utah marriage license. It was a
backdoor attempt to overturn the bigamy statute but it too failed.
Some pundits fear that if one of these bigamy cases makes it to the
United States Supreme Court it will be overturned. Is that a valid
reason for not prosecuting?

Sister Wives did not address the abuse of women and children, or
neglect, welfare fraud, sense of entitlement, incest and dishonesty in
general that seems to be endemic to Mormon fundamentalism. It appears
TLC was only interested in sensationalism. The Brown family was
fodder used for ratings, nevertheless, willing and flamboyant fodder.
If the Utah County Attorney declines to prosecute what messages will
that send to the world?

The Utah County Attorney has vast discretionary powers. The
assumption is his decision will be based on legal polemics. But I can
just about guarantee that if he declines to prosecute there will be
moral interpretations. The Utah Attorney General has already
established that Utah is soft on polygamy. Polygamy is still a valid
LDS Church tenet, they just don’t think they should practice it now.
Utah County is bedrock Mormonism – the home of steadfast true
believers. It therefore stands to reason that Utah County Mormons
believe that Jesus Christ actually talked to Joseph Smith and Jesus
commanded all Mormon women to become plural wives. It is therefore a
safe prediction that if Kody is not prosecuted the world is apt to
deduce that it was due to religious influences.

The LDS Church is the most powerful and influential institution in
the State of Utah. The official position of the Church is to stay out
of politics and governmental matters except where morality such as
abortion and homosexuality is concerned, which brings to mind, is
polygamy a moral, religious or cultural issue?

The Church’s position concerning Mormon fundamentalist polygamy is
perplexing. All the leaders are willing to say is that the
polygamists do not belong to the Church. The Brethren are
conspicuously silent when it comes to the constitutional and moral
issues surrounding polygamy. I suspect that the Utah County Attorney
would appreciate a sign from South Temple Street, the location of
Church headquarters, a simple thumb up or thumb down would do.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Gone in 60 Seconds

All the empirical medical research done on polygamy, worldwide, shows that the practice shows elevated levels of molestation and incest, especially in female children.

Are people psychologically different because they live in a different section of the world? Hardly.

How long does it take, when you are associating with people who commit the felony crime of polygamy to locate an example of child abuse, molestation, poverty or neglect? I'd suggest you can't throw a rock in the local vicinity without hitting one.

In the full KSL interview with the Brown's from TLC's new show, Sister Wives, it seems to prove it takes less than 60 seconds anyway.


At the 55 second mark, a woman is seen walking in the background. Her name is Heidi Mattingly Foster, and obviously she is an acquaintance of the Browns, there to assist with the taping.

Perhaps someone should ask the Browns how exactly they know Ms. Foster, whose children have been removed from her on more than one occasion by the state of Utah.


Foster parents of her children say that the female children in their care ended every night by climbing into their beds, lying on their backs, clasping their hands in prayer and spreading their legs wide apart. When asked what they were doing the foster parents were informed that the girls were "waiting for the hand of G-d to come bless them between their legs."

So how long does it take to locate other crimes when the crime of polygamy is highlighted?

I'd like to thank the Browns for clearing this up for us.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

The Eyes of Texas

There's an issue among those of us who oppose polygamy that needs to be addressed. Since the airing of the TLC show "Sister Wives", I have heard from more than one quarter that "I simply refuse to watch the garbage".

I understand. It was hard for me to tune in as well. I had to DVR it, so I could step away and have my fits of indignation. I understand those, and the need for them.

I have watched all 7 episodes of the show, exactly once, and I already have a list of issues, either lies the Browns have told, or obvious problems with their assertions that none of this polygamous behavior is coercive.

If any of you think that the opposition, the Plural Voices group, or the Safety Net Committee, or the governments of Utah and Arizona are skipping the show, or skipping looking at us, their opposition, you are wrong.

The AAAP has an online discussion group where we post empirical medical research done on the affects of polygamy on women and children. And guess who came to the party this week wanting to take a gander at our research? The email address ends in utah.gov.

I know it is hard to look at this stuff, whether because of basic human principle or because all our sensibilities are so offended when we look at it, but that's what we're here for, isn't it?

Believe me, more than once when someone has expressed interest in "what I do", they have told me, "Wow, this stuff is really a bummer, isn't it?"

Yes, it's a bummer. That's why everyone isn't an anti-polygamy activist. It takes someone strong to continue looking right back at evil behavior and to stand your ground and say, "I'm watching YOU!"

I have yet to go back and re-watch the 7 "Sister Wives" episodes. Maybe I'll need a stiff drink or something to get through it. But my point is that in just one viewing I spotted many lies and inconsistencies. I need more eyes willing to watch and ask questions.

Utah is obviously gearing up for a full court press to decriminalize this human blight. They aren't asking for access to the research we've compiled because they don't think it is a threat. They are there to find holes.

Don't you think, as activists, we should be looking back?

Well? Don't you?