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Polygamy in the Media

Poughkeepsie Journal Interviews Founder
   About Polygamy, for Published article

Order this TAPE
This Interview is Available on TAPE.

Poughkeepsie Journal
Rasheed Oluwa
April 28, 2003
(Interview: April. 16, 2003)
Poughkeepsie Journal Interviews Founder
About Polygamy, for Published article

On April 16, 2003, Rasheed Oluwa, a writer for the Poughkeepsie Journal, a daily newspaper in New York State, interviewed the Founder of TruthBearer.org. The 34-minute telephone interview was for an article which would be published in a subsequent issue of the Poughkeepsie Journal. The entire interview was recorded on audiocassette tape, and is available for order.

The writer conducting the interview was seeking information for an article he was writing about recently caught bigamists in the New York area. In his efforts to provide "journalistic balance" to his story, he sought pro-polygamy information from the TruthBearer organization.

The interview went very well.

As can be heard on the audiocassette recording of the interview, a number of excellent points were able to be succcessfully made, such as...

  • * how the organization is only after de-criminalization, not legalization

  • * how some state bigamy laws actually criminalize mere "speech", violating the 1st Amendment in terms of "free speech" even (never mind, "freedom of religion" issues)

  • * dishonest bigamy vs. honest polygamy

  • * love-not-force is the standard for honest polygamy

  • * the deep psychological challenge for people to accept that others were not correct about the scripturality of polygyny

  • * the successful paradigm-shifting that Christian leaders have already made

  • * Christian Polygamy vs. Mormon Polygamy

  • * no support for the horrible situations of Tom Green or of the Elizabeth Smart kidnappers

  • * how media hype on polygamy is, too often, much like racists only using one-sided or skewed "news reports" to try to "prove" that some race is supposedly "not good"

  • * and more excellent arguments were made, as well!

No doubt, pro-polygamy activists will want to be sure to order the audiocassette recording of this telephone interview. Beyond the published article, the collection of arguments all presented on this one tape make it a very important tape to use as a tool for passing the pro-polygamy message on to others!

What now follows is Rasheed Oluwa's article, followed by a quick clarification and comment at the end.



In marriage, three's a crowd -- and a crime

Bigamy can result in prison term

By Rasheed Oluwa

Double the fun or just twice the trouble?

Either way, the life of a bigamist is destined for heartache if authorities catch wind. David Mitchell learned the hard way when he was arrested in March 2001 after his first wife, a Beekman woman, informed police Mitchell was illegally married to another woman in Carmel.

''He was looking to end his marriage with his first wife, but they couldn't come to an agreement,'' said Senior In-vestigator Tom Jones of the New York State Police. ''He decided to get married to his new love without waiting to work things out with his first wife and he wound up getting married again in Connecticut.''

Wife reported

Jones said police were tipped off when Mitchell's first wife, who was living in Beekman, reported him to state police in Dover Plains.

Bigamy is when a person takes on more than one spouse. It's a class E felony under the state penal law and carries a potential prison sentence of three to four years.

From 1990 to 2002, there were four bigamy arrests in Dutchess and Ulster counties and 161 statewide, the state Department of Criminal Justice Services said.

Most cases happen when marriage terms run into each other or are part of larger scams, said Roy Tario, head of enforcement at the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services office in Albany.

One example was the 1998 arrest of a Canadian man in Fishkill. Authorities said the man had as many as 10 wives, marrying each and scamming them before they caught on.

''We don't see a lot of it and it's not that common in the Albany area,'' Tario said. ''When we do see it, we just look at it as fraud.''

Many of these scams involve "marriage brokers" who arrange marriages for immigrants to citizens situated stateside, Tario said. The arrangement is done so that an immigrant can receive a two-year, conditional citizenship.

In 1998, a similar situation happened in Kingston when a woman was arrested for being married to three men at the same time. She was living by herself at the time of her arrest.

Town of Ulster police said there appeared to have been no monetary gain for the woman and the marriages appeared to have been motivated by citizenship reasons.

Mark H*****, a spokesman for the group TruthBearer, said he would like to see bigamy laws changed altogether.

TruthBearer is a Christian polygamy advocacy group based in Maine that cites biblical scripture and the polygamists' lifestyle of such Old Testament biblical figures as Abraham and King David as justification.

H***** interprets a parable told in Matthew 25 in which Jesus tells of 10 maidens awaiting a bridegroom, as proof that Jesus acknowledged polygamy.

''The point is, that it is so hard for the people to cope with the reality,'' he said.

While H***** would like to see polygamy laws changed, he acknowledges that some protections are needed to protect people from potential scams and fraud. He also said his group did not believe in forced marriages and that potential wives must agree to polygamous arrangements on their own accord.

Examples easy to find

Michael Tori, a professor in Marist College's religious studies program, agreed examples of polygamy could easily be found in the Old Testament. But, he also cited several examples that showed the Bible's shift to the idea of monogamy.

One example Tori gave was in a section in Paul's first letter to Timothy, which states that an overseer should be a man of one wife, beyond reproach, moderate in habits and sound in mind.

He also questioned H***** 's interpretation of Jesus' parable in Matthew 25.

''Jesus making a parable or saying something is not the same as him saying that a man can be married to 10 wives,'' he said.

Tori said societal changes also contributed to the shift to monogamy. Despite the polygamous marriages of the Mormon prophets Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, the church issued an official declaration in 1890 banning the practice of polygamy.

The declaration followed the government's decision in 1862 to outlaw polygamy.

''The reasoning behind the Latter Day Saints' decision was for social acceptance and statehood,'' Tori said.

[ END OF ARTICLE ]

<><

The audiocassette recording of the 34-minute telephone interview with the Founder of Truthbearer.org, pertaining to the above published article, has been mass produced and is now available for order.

Final Clarifications and Comment:

For briefly clarifying the matters.... In the interview, Mark the Founder did not merely "acknowledge" that protections should be in place to protect people from the fraud and contract-breaking issues of "dishonest bigamy". Rather, he quite emphatically declared support for such legal protections for people as part of his elaborating the "love-not-force" position. As well, and of course, the presented "debate" of supposed "interpretation" about the Matthew 25:1-13 "Parable of the 10 Virgins" was not about Jesus merely "acknowledging" polygamy. Rather is was the matter of the Lord using HIS OWN SELF in the example thereof. The visibly obvious point is that, since our Lord Jesus Christ was sinless, He would NEVER have described HIS OWN SELF in any context of a supposed sinful situation. If polygamy was a sin, Jesus would NEVER have told the story that way with HIS OWN SELF in the described context of being a polygamist. (And since Christians understand that WE are the ones to be with Him forever, the "five wise virgins" cannot be mere temporarily-present "bridesmaids", but only actual BRIDES to be with the BRIDEGROOM for ever. Amen! ) THAT is certainly more than just "acknowledging polygamy", of course. It is an outright proof for us that polygamy can NOT be a sin according to our sinless Lord and Savior ---precisely because he DID use that parable.

With these two clarifications made, though, it is possible that the use of the word, "acknowledged", in each of these two, now-clarified situations in the article might be a simple matter local, geographic cultural use of the word, "acknowledged". So, it is fair enough to also give the article and reporter the benefit of the doubt in this case, for sure. For, no doubt, the article did otherwise positively present and represent what was said in the interview quite well indeed. The reporter is to be commended indeed.

The ministry of TruthBearer.org is truly and genuinely grateful to Rasheed Oluwa the Poughkeepsie Journal newspaper for the truly positive telephone interview which he conducted prior to writing this article, as well as for writing the article itself. Notwithstanding the aforementioned clarifications, the interview and the article provided yet another constructive opportunity with which to get out our positive message about TRUE Christian Polygamy, per love-not-force.

And now YOU can get a copy of the audiocassette recording of this very positive media interview too YOU can help further spread the word to others too! Order your copy TODAY!

Glory to God that that message gets out! Alleluia Hallelujah!

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