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June 26, 2004

Sneakin' Sally Through the Alley

I was watching a special on late night MSNBC about the man in Utah who was being tried for polygamy, Tom Green. 5 Wives, 25+ children.


Anyway, ole' Tom here's getting read the riot act by just about everyone, but feels he's expressing his religion with consenting women. Testimony of Green and the wives reveals no real misconduct and, indeed, consent. Adding to the scandal is the fact his original wife, Linda, was 13 when they married. I'll concede that this is astonishing by today's standards, but we all know what went on for us poor girls in the days of yore, so it's not unbelievable. Green going on television (Dateline) to defend his beliefs prompts state law enforcement to investigate him on charges of bigamy. Green and his wives cite ancient Mormon tradition as the reason for their lifestyle, and claim they've been pressured from the state to keep quiet about it.

Green: "It's [the prosecution] because we're an embarrassment to the state of Utah because we have the courage, or the stupidity, to talk to you people [the media] about our beliefs."

Green claims that he is, in fact, a single man, having divorced each wife before marrying the next (even though the entire ensemble essentially lives with each other and they interact daily) to abide by Utah state law. But the state is trying to prove that Green and his first wife qualify for what Utah recognizes as a "common law" marriage. So, they're trying (or maybe have) put him in jail for bigamy.

These people live in UTAH.
It appears that all 5 wives are into the commune idea, and all 25 children appear happy and healthy. Yes, it does does seem a little sick and all the people in question appear to be, well ... weird when interviewed, this is Utah.
Life in Utah is weird. For lots of reasons. We know this.

Again, I just think it's important that we reflect of the level of weirdness of life in Utah. Especially Mormon Life. In. Utah.
It's gotta be weirder than we could ever dream! Every first-hand Mormon experience I've had in my life suggests this to me. Anyway.

In reality, though:
At some point in their tenure as part of the harem, 4 of the 5 women have collected unemployment as single mothers. None have worked outside the home, excepting under Green's supervision in his magazine business. But all seem resolute and content with their lives and duties as ... mothers. All have testified in his defense, and continue to live together while he awaits trial. All of the children are in good health, attending Utah public schools, and investigators found no indication of child abuse.

But, if they put him in jail for marrying and living with all these women, what HAPPENS TO THE WOMEN?! They all have like 5 kids, and are still breeding?!

In 2001, when this first aired, the women were asked by reporters how they would survive if their husband went to jail.
The women say "we'll stick together and do the best we can to raise our families."

This same question was posed to the prosecutor in the case against Green:

MSNBC reporter: "So if Tom Green goes to jail, what happens to these women and their 25 children?"

Prosecutor: "The exact same thing that happens to the wives and children of murderers and rapists and burglars."

Oh, good...

UPDATE: Green was sentenced to 5 yrs. in prison, his 30th(!) child was born while he was being tried (more on the way when this aired), and the women and their kids were split up and living with relatives so that they could eat.

Green was separately tried, and I think convicted, for Rape of a Child - for conceiving a child with his first wife, Linda, when she was 14 years old. Both Green and his wife were appealing the decision.

Ultimately, to me, it was pretty sad on all fronts.

Last I checked, in 2001, we had bigger problems than that. At least I thought.

Posted by kati at 03:36 PM

June 09, 2004

"Ma-Na, Ma-Na"

"I mean, think about it. Can you imagine being so afflicted that you compulsively hit yourself in the head? Like, when you were upset? ...
Poor Rainman!"

I've befriended some renegade sock puppets. Some really down to earth, no nonsense sock puppets. Some sock puppets who tell it like it is.
Much like Sifl and Ollie from the old MTV days. I bet these puppets would play hackey sack if they had feet. But they don't, so that's only speculation on my part.

They're providing some much needed perspective, which is clearly why they were brought here. You know what people say, don't you, that God works in mysterious ways, and a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, and the grass is always greener, and everything happens for a reason - so I obviously was meant to meet these puppets right when I did. They must be part of my great cosmic plan.

Posted by kati at 04:43 PM