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Re: The Evidence That Polygamy Will Be Next Claim

Sir,

Where can I respond to the above article citing a raft of inaccurate references, thereby rendering the press release as an outrageous dishonest sound byte pontificated by leaders that should know better?

I cannot fathom why this national grandstanding is permitted without questioning the information/fuel they supply in fanning this controversy.

I am referring to your article;
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/PO1301/S00012/the-evidence-that-polygamy-and-polyamory-will-be-next-claim.htm
in which there are 16 examples displaying Family First Facts

Example 1;
http://www.wluml.org/english/newsfulltxt.shtml?cmd[157]=x-157-507316

The link cites 2 studies from the Canadian government. Furthermore: The research paper is part of a controversial $150,000 polygamy project, launched a year ago and paid for by the Justice Department and Status of Women Canada. The paper by three law professors at Queen’s University in Kingston argues that Section 293 of the Criminal Code banning polygamy serves no useful purpose and in any case is rarely prosecuted.
Clicking on the above link takes the reader to
Women Living Under Muslim Laws, and the page is titled "Canada: End polygamy ban, report urges Ottawa"

In the reference section it refers to one report (two opposing views are in the body of the text, the largest estate belonging to allowing polygamy
Polygamy in Canada: Legal and Social Implications for Women and Children – A Collection of Policy Research Reports

Angela Campbell, Nicholas Bala, Katherine Duvall-Antonacopoulos, Leslie MacRae and Joanne J. Paetsch
Martha Bailey, Beverley Baines, Bita Amani and Amy Kaufman
The Alberta Civil Liberties Research Centre

This 2005 report concludes “At the international level, there is a clear movement toward the legal abolition of polygamy to promote the interests of women and children. Canada is widely known for its leadership in promoting the rights of women and the recognition of human rights. Canada should be very reluctant to alter this reputation be decriminalizing polygamy. Furthermore the first recommendation in the report is to maintain the Criminal code s. 293, making it an offence to enter into a polygamous marriage or live in a polygamous union in Canada.

There is also a broken link, I expect pointing to the first report.

Conclusion: a site by Muslim women (and from that I assume they are heterosexual) are promoting polygamy. What are the chances? Furthermore one of their sources of evidence is taken out of context and incorrectly applied to the extent one of the reports recommends against polygamy.

Example 2;
http://www.cga.ct.gov/2002/rpt/2002-R-0172.htm

Clicking on the above link takes the reader to a 2002 (Same sex marriage became legal in 2005) Law commission report having the Topic as MARRIAGE (GENERAL); FAMILIES (GENERAL); SEXUAL ORIENTATION.

No mention of polygamy, but was specific of relationships between couples (conjugal and non-conjugal) as well as being of the same sex on this link.

By further searching the paper is found and looking at the footnotes Family First refer to "Although the authors of “Beyond Conjugality” are politic enough to relegate the point to footnotes, they state that they see no reason, in principle, to limit registered partnerships to two people." This is simply untrue.

What the authors do state is (footnote 32) "In this Report, the Law Commission of Canada does not address the issue of polygamy. further study is required on the effects of polygamy and the appropriate governmental response, for example, around the inequality and balance of power issues which may exist within the relationship. However, it is reasonable to question whether use of the Criminal Code is the best way to respond to these issues. See Law Reform commission of Canada, Bigamy (Working Paper 42, 1985). The previous Commission recommended that the offences against conjugal unions, apart from bigamy, be repealed (at 22-23). There is a strong case that the consequences of bigamy are also better addressed through civil sanctions."


Example 3; Newsweek article.
I won't spend time disseminating news articles designed to polarise viewers.

Example 4;
http://beyondmarriage.org/full_statement.html

A statement from the LGBT community in the US. The word polygamy is not used. Nowhere is there specific reference to having more than one partner (and there are references from the mormon state, Utah)


Example 5;
Broken link I assume because they used the link found here: http://www.christiandoctrine.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=565:the-1972-gay-rights-platform-&catid=106:society-and-culture&Itemid=478

Additional searching found this;
http://www.rslevinson.com/gaylesissues/features/collect/onetime/bl_platform1972.htm
However this is one line from a 41 year old bulletin, so will not bother with it. How far back does Family First need to seek for examples?

Example 6;
Unfortunately I am unable from the comfort of this chair examine the full report. This is the first reference relevant to New Zealand society within an acceptable time frame. However looking at the example; "New Zealand legislation gives a mixed message about what State counts as family." This does it mean that same sex marriage will lead to polygamy. In fact this example implies existing legislation is conflicted on what constitutes a family.

Example 7;
Again the source in this example [http://www.investigatemagazine.com/dysonspeech.pdf] does not discuss Polygamy or same sex specifically. Rather the discussion is about empowering families and moving from a social welfare to a social development. By Family First implying this article is saying same sex relationships leading to polygamous results, and by that I mean "We must cater for the diversity, we know exists. By this I mean the range of relationships from single, couples, triples, blended, de facto, and so on" is simple bias. For example, because of the ambiguous wording "triples, blended" I think Dyson is really talking about separated couples maintaining children to both sets of parents.

Example 8; - the only New Zealand example providing evidence on the slippery slope of kiwi's sexual values
http://www.gaynz.com/articles/publish/2/article_12052.php
Interesting out of context example here. In this case it is clear to me that Family First have no distinction between polygamy and polyamory. The article was actually written to identify that GLBT rights did not end with marriage equality. Nowhere was polygamy mentioned or even implied.

Example 9;
http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/002/938xpsxy.asp?nopager=1
Back to the USA.
I won't spend time dissiminating news articles designed to polarise viewers.

Example 10;
http://familyfirst.org.nz/2012/10/toronto-school-board-poster-promotes-polygamy/
This is a school poster.
http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/toronto-school-board-poster-promotes-polygamy
The poster states in large letters, "Love has no gender", but that does not mean marriage. There are images of apparent unions with more than 2 people in it. but again not specifically does it detail a polygamous relationship. Now it may seem I am sweeping under the carpet here, so just to be clear. This is a poster containing images. The volume of stick figures implies the different type of relationships possible between individuals, and there are instances of being more than a couple. There are none with babies, there are none indicating marriage. Therefore I am assuming this is about sexual orientation, rather than legislated social definitions.

Example 11 through 16; news articles
I won't spend time dissiminating news articles designed to polarise viewers.

As can be seen from above Family First rely on incorrect references to push their view that same sex marriages will eventually lead to polygamy. I have looked through much of the evidence within a short timeframe and found it to be ambiguous at best. That is, there is no corroboratory evidence convincing me that Family First provides indicating that by permitting same sex marriages will eventually lead New Zealand to legislating for polygamous marriages.

Yours Sincerely
Dax Lloyd
Sydney, Australia

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