Being That Polygamy Is Illegal the in US How Is the Show Sister Wives Even Being Aired?

Question by Ayana Linval: Being that polygamy is illegal the in US how is the show Sister Wives even being aired?
It’s illegal plain and simple, so how is it that it is being aired on television? I’m not here to debate whether or not you think polygamy is right or wrong, I don’t want to here opinions or chatter. Polygamy/bigamy, and cohabitation is illegal in Utah, and yet they are blatantly showing off that they’re participating in it, and damaging 16 children in the process by exposing them to these crimes. Why is it that the show is still being aired, and why these criminals are not being charged? They’ve admitted guilt, they have hours of video proving their guilt. Why aren’t these people in prison, and the children in proper care?
Maybe if you read the information below the question you could figure it out. It’s a new, and appalling show that TLC decided to pump out to follow their shows about teen pregnancies, borderline child porn, and families that choose to pump out hundreds of kids oppose to actually taking care of the ones they already have. It’s a show about a polygamist family teaching their children that women are worth less than men. Polygamy is illegal, so all I want to know is why they are not being arrested, and the kids being pulled out of there and put somewhere safe.
Oh yeah, I guess your right, that’s exactly why we ignore pedophilia, theft, and people who start cults to brainwash people into doing other crimes. Because it doesn’t affect us. If you’re not here to answer why something that is illegal is being allowed to continue unpunished then just leave.

Best answer:

Answer by PoohBearPenguin
This is something I don’t understand either.

As far as I know, Utah was the last state to allow polygamy or at least not explicitly outlaw it, and they formally outlawed it as a condition for hosting the 2002 Olympics.

Ok, sure, so maybe the family they’re covering got married before the ban, and is covered by a grandfather clause. However the previews made it clear that the show was going to cover the effects of the family absorbing a new wife – which would clearly be after the 2002 ban.

So…what gives? Do they ever address this? I have no interest in the show but find it odd that TLC even got the green flag from their legal department to even consider this show.

For what it’s worth, the only reason polygamy is illegal is because of the havok it would wreak with our legal system with regards to property laws. All our laws are written with the assumption that a marriage is only between 2 people at any one time. For instance, what would happen if wife #2 decided she wanted a divorce? Do all wives get equal shares? Is there some formula for dealing with the different lengths of being married? Don’t know. While we could create new laws to deal with this, as a society it’s a problem we’ve decided to just not deal with so it’s easier to make it illegal.

Answer by phrog
utah “formally outlawed” polygamy in 1890……and it had nothing to do with “property laws”.

and to answer your question – now that they have called attention to themselves they will undoubtedly be charged. you can live under the radar fairly easily…..in fact – they are currently being investigated for a possible charge of felony bigamy – and officials were apparently investigating them prior to the show (which will only provide evidence against them now).

polygamy is difficult to prosecute due to the fact that they usually only “legally” marry one wife and just cohabitate with the rest. utah, however, has on it’s books laws with wording addressing that and they will face the consequences of polygamous relationships under the law.

I would like to point out the show “intervention” – which also shows illegal activity taking place (like drug use) and doesn’t stop it. tv will show what people will watch……

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