I Was a Human Library Book, In Polygamy’s Shadow, at the Vancouver Public Library, Downtown Branch

2017 Human Library at the Vancouver Public Library
2017 Human Library at the Vancouver Public Library

Relaxing with some of the other titles after last Sunday’s event, with Jordy who makes the Human Library hum and Emily in the forefront – our incredible organizer who keeps everything running smoothly.

There is only one weekend left – next February 4 and 5.

For anyone who isn’t familiar with the Human Library, check out my interview with the Georgia Straight

 

Ask Permission or Claim Your Own Power?

In Polygamy's Shadow, Keynote speaker
In Polygamy’s Shadow, Keynote speaker, University Women’s Club of Vancouver at Hycroft, National Day of Remembrance and Action On Violence Against Women, December 6

I recognized the young woman by her signature Mormon smile, even before she told me that she’d just left the church. During the Q&A after my presentation of In Polygamy’s Shadow she asked, “How did you get off the membership list? Did you have go to your bishop, or to a bishop’s council?”

“I sent a letter to Salt Lake telling them what I thought of the church and instructing them to remove my name from all their records. I had to write twice.”

Only later did I remember that I’d sent the letter to everyone on the leadership directory.

Sound Choices Coalition

Thank you to Kristyn Decker, Author of Fifty Years in Polygamy and Founder of Sound Choices Coalition for providing this information.

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-4-31-54-pm
Visit Sound Choices Coalition at sound-choices.com

Why Not Polygamy?

No practice that results in such ill effects should be a “right” under the US Constitution.

“The harms flowing from polygamy are too evident to ignore and too serious to allow to occur under the guise of fundamental rights.” (Lawyer, Thomas Buck.)

“Good” polygamy versus “bad” polygamy? Canada’s ruling on polygamy found that “The harms associated with the practice are endemic; they are inherent.” This means that the harms of polygamy are not just the result of abusive individuals. Social, physical, or emotional harms are inevitable where polygamy exists. Keep reading →

Kristyn Decker, Author of 50 Years in Polygamy, Founder, Sound Choices Coalition

Kristyn Decker commented on Winston Blackmore’s warm welcome as a guest speaker at the recent Sun Stone in Utah and on the trial here in Creston. (Only one, easily missed media item has been published about the trial here in British Columbia):

Our SCC team and supporters were quite disappointed when Winston and other polygamists got the “Royal” treatment before, at and after Sun Stone. The pro polygamy speakers were the only ones who made the news – nothing new about that. Nothing. The media seems biased when it comes to pro or anti polygamy out-cries. The polygamists get .80 coverage to our .20.

The Supreme Court is considering taking on the Brown’s case. Utah has until next November to counter their plea. The only good thing about that would be if the outcome was the same as the Canadian Court Ref. Case. However, the way it looks now, the world might as well start announcing that if there are any polygamists and law-breakers, they can all move to Utah where they’ll be given free reign, and be supported by our tax dollars.

For further information on Sound Choices Coalition and their mission, please click on the link to visit their website.

Information above provided by Kristyn Decker and posted by Maggie Rayner

Three Bountiful Members Now In Cranbrook Court, in BC

Bill Piket of Campaign Against Bountiful Abuse posted this today:

Dear friends,

The CBC reports that three members of the FLDS are now before a judge charged with transporting a girl across the Canada USA border to hand her over to an older man in the USA. The case is on in a Cranbrook court.

Nice to know that at long last things are happening. Daphne Bramham is in Cranbrook to cover the story.

No information yet on when the case against Winston Blackmore himself will go to trial.

I am getting a ton of interest on this story on my facebook page.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/bountiful-polygamists-on-trial-for-taking-girl-to-u-s-to-marry-older-man-1.3820712

Charged with Polygamy in BC, Blackmore Guest Speaker at Mormon symposium in Salt Lake City, Utah

Balloons for the Celebratory Party
Balloons for the Celebration Parade

Don’t blow up any balloons to celebrate Blackmore’s conviction just yet. It’s the middle of August and no trial date has been set for Winston Blackmore of Bountiful, British Columbia. Criminal charges against Blackmore and three other members of that polygamous Mormon community were upheld by the BC Appeal Court and announced at the start of June. Charges range from polygamy to the cross-border transportation of underage girls – children – for illegal sexual purposes. (10 of the 27 wives that Blackmore married were under 19. Some were as young as 15 and 16 and half of those are American, still in British Columbia, years after their visitor visas have expired. One of Blackmore’s marriages is incestuous: he married his step-daughter.)  Keep reading →

Leader in Bountiful, B.C., Charged with Polygamy

It’s finally happened. After decades of public outcry and legal wrangling, Winston Blackmore, one of the leaders of the polygamous Mormon community in Bountiful, B.C., has lost his appeal. Blackmore has two dozen wives – some who were underage girls when he married them – and over one hundred and thirty children. On June 1, 2016, The Globe and Mail reported B.C. Appeal Court upholds attempt to charge accused polygamist Winston Blackmore. Keep reading →

Reading at the Gibsons Library, Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Gibsons, "little house around the bay" today - once a tool shed,
Gibsons, “little house around the bay” today – once a tool shed we lived in that dripped tar from the ceiling.
I arrived in Gibsons early for my presentation of In Polygamy’s Shadow at the Gibsons Library. The hot spring day added to the pleasure of driving by childhood memories – the tool shed we lived in, “the big house around the bay,” and “the house on the hill” – structures small now through adult eyes, and all changed beyond recognition.

The neighor’s yellow plum tree that I poached juicy fruit from was gone, along with the rope swing I dangled from, and the oak tree I climbed . . .

I was reminded that there is no going back, only forward, and home isn’t made of 2×4’s nailed together but the sense of self that I carry within.

The Gallery in Artisan Square, Bowen Island, May 15, 2016

The Gallery, Bowen Island
The Gallery, Bowen Island

“Things have changed in the Mormon Church since you grew up, haven’t they?” The voice of the woman in the audience seemed to ask for reassurance that I couldn’t provide. I knew without her telling me that she must have extended family who were members, or perhaps the children of friends. They couldn’t possibly be subject to the religious rules that had governed my childhood, could they???

The question came up during the Q&A of my first presentation and reading of In Polygamy’s Shadow at the Gallery in Artisan Square on Bowen Island. With so many years between me and attendance at church, all I could tell her was that I knew black men were now allowed to hold the priesthood and that it was still a patriarchal structure. Keep reading →