Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Is polyamory legal in Canada?

Today's Star has reprinted an edited version of a recent Vancouver Sun editorial (Polygamy is not a freedom issue) which seems to be urging B.C.'s Child, Family and Community Services to remove the children of Bountiful from a perceived situation of harm and exploitation; even without a court order.

This seems a tad harsh, but I suppose if there were concrete evidence of abuse, then by all means, the authorities should intercede.

The opening paragraph of the editorial also refers to the Canadian Criminal Code:

Polygamy has been a crime in Canada since 1892. Under s. 293 of the Criminal Code any conjugal union with more than one person at the same time, whether or not it is a binding marriage, is an indictable offence with a penalty of up to five years in prison.

There's no ambiguity in s. 293. Polygamy is illegal, no ifs, ands or buts.

Under that definition, any 'conjugal union' of consisting of more than two people is illegal.

However, I wonder how many consensual living arrangements there are in Canada involving more than two persons? We are already told that Swingers' sex is legal by the Supreme Court. So is it only legal in clubs? What if the couples want to live together in a conjugal manner? So they have to go the the clubs to have sex?

So what we're talking about here is polyamory. I really don't think that law from 1892 is valid any longer. Society and morals have changed, I am always being told.

Supposing two bi-sexual women and a straight guy all love each other and want to live together, and possibly even have that recognized as a civil union?

How can we stop it?

On what legal grounds?

13 comments:

PGP said...

The problem is the charter!
Trudeau's ultimate blow to Canadian tradition and real justice needs to be tossed to the scrap pile of failed socialist ventures..... permanently.

Jeff Davidson said...

what exactly are you trying to stop? consenting adults from having more than one sexual partner at a time?

good luck.

liberal supporter said...

No Jeff, you ignorant left wing tool. All sex must be regulated by government. Only those with intercourse permits may have intercourse. Of course there are no other kinds of sexual activities allowed under the law, and if you are infertile, you may not have a permit. Anyone engaging in such acts must be imprisoned. We will need special prisons to keep these bixsexual orgyists apart.

I love being a right winger!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

what exactly are you trying to stop? consenting adults from having more than one sexual partner at a time?

Actually, I am trying to make that very point. Contrary to the editorial's reference to Section 293, I don't see how any law can dictate who lives together, how many of them, and if they have sex with each other or not.

Kingston said...

Joanne, your totally correct concerning your statement, The one statement that Trudeau made that was totally correct is the state has no business in the bedrooms of our nations so long as all the hanky pankie is occurring between consenting adults or so deemed to be,(reaching the age of consent and be consenting). Now with that said how do you stop people from abusing the system as we see in BC with multiple social assistance being granted to the multiple wives of these men. To me it doesn't seem that hard, most half descent computer systems can cross reference and detect this. Maybe the govt could pass some legislation that says you are entitled to have more then one wife at a time but we are only going to provide social assistance to the first or primary family.

Jeff Davidson said...

the law doesn't dictate who lives together or whether or not they have sexual relations (among consenting adults).

the law does say that you may only have one conjugal union AKA civil marriage at a time.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

the law does say that you may only have one conjugal union AKA civil marriage at a time.

Jeff, I don't think you can equate "conjugal union" with "civil marriage".

PGP said...

Kingston's got a good point...
I'd like to see it happen BUT once again the CRF could and would be used to prevent it.
Our own national Catch 22 that guarantees only devolution of society.
The Sleep of Reason ! Embodied in what some choose to view as our Constitution ..........

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Cool pic, PGP. Where did you find that?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

BTW, interesting info here in a report by Status of Women (ironically) arguing for decriminalization of polygamy and plural unions in general:

Section 15(1) of the Charter, the equality guarantee, provides: “Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and, in particular, without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability.”122 Parties challenging the prohibition on polygamous marriages might invoke as many as five different grounds of discrimination. Because foreign polygamous marriages are recognized as valid in Canada, at least for some purposes, residents refused marriage licences for pending polygamous marriages could argue citizenship or marital status discrimination. Section 15(1) makes no reference to citizenship or to marital status. However, the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that citizenship and martial status are analogous grounds of discrimination.

Kingston said...

Jeff, how would you prevent the multiple feeders at the trough. It would be a huge mess, the women well not being legally married or in a civil union could still claim social assistance, yes I understand that it could happen even now but I would hazard a guess it is not very common place through out society, where as it became more socially acceptable by the legal right being given for multiple unions it would grow. It is a little late to say no to someone after the children have been conceived.

PGP said...

Where did the picture come from?
I'm not sure.....

Anonymous said...

I keep hearing the argument that polygamy is misogynist. While many religions that condone polygamy also condone misogyny I have yet to hear someone show cause and effect. Correlation does not prove causation. It seems to me that it is these religions that cause many people to seek polygamy but also cause the men to see themselves as better than women. Take away the polygamy and you have the same oppressive patriarchal relationships between one man and one woman.

I do think polygamy does come with a host of legal problems though. Giving potentially thousands of people spousal immunity and naturalization is one of them. Polygamous civil unions with less rights might be appropriate but not full marriage.