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Old 11-27-2011, 08:04 AM
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ImaginaryIllusion ImaginaryIllusion is offline
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,950

Originally Posted by Tonberry View Post
Not much progress here from my point of view. Why couldn't you have a ceremony without enjoying any of the legal benefits? What goes wrong the second there is a ceremony? This is incredibly ridiculous.
Ridiculous...yeah, kinda. Part of why this story is likely far from over.
Originally Posted by TruckerPete View Post
It's a good amount of progress from my POV. It means that we three can't be arrested because I'm married to Indigo and also having "conjugal relations" with Mr. A.
You got it TP. The case in general, and I think the entire objective of the Amicus and challenging intervenors was never about legalizing or figuring out how to regulate polygamy. That's not the purview of the court, it belongs to the legislature. All the questions in news comments etc. which yell and scream about what happens to pension benefits and such are far far down the road, and won't be decided by a trial.

The purpose of the reference was to determine if the law which makes polygamy criminal is constitutional. Does the state have the authority under the charter to restrict our freedom of having multiple spouses by using a criminal statute. And while the decision is so far in favour of upholding that law, the clarification means that the majority of polyamorous relationships (those that have not conducted more than one simultaneous marriage ceremony) are not captured by s.293. By that clarification polyamory as a relationship style, be it by co-habitation and/or common law is legal (upto the line in the sand of multiple marriages).

To have the threat of criminal prosecution lifted from our community is not an insignificant victory by any means. It opens the door for us to start moving freely and work towards the next court challenge, public awareness, and eventual acceptance. Whether or not we ever get it, we at least have the option to try.

Originally Posted by trescool View Post
I have to say, it's such a relief to hear this explained. I was really upset when I first read it because of how very negative it is regarding multiple partner relationships. For example,

" As for polyamory, only vague definitions have been offered as to what the term means, and none is capable of supporting any practical distinction between harmful polygamy and supposedly benign polyamory. Moreover, given that polyamory necessarily entails an increase in the number of non-related cohabitants, there is no reason to expect that the predicted increase in associated harms would apply with any less rigour than in the context of religiously motivated polygamy."
That bit was the AG's, and they were of course trying to minimize the weight that polyamory would be given in evidence as opposed to the polygamists on which all their evidence was based.

Originally Posted by trescool View Post
It seems this legislation is very anti multiple conjugal partners, but I guess reading this has made me realise that as bizarre as it sounds, it seems like multiple co HABITATING partners is not seen in the same in the eyes of the law as multiple CONJUGAL partners...
It's not about the relationship, it's whether or not you had a wedding. AGBC was similarly dismissive of our inclinations toward weddings in drawing the following conclusion from the Polyamorous affidavits.
[960] In explaining why the need to address the matter may never arise, the AGBC offers some further insight into what conduct he considers s. 293 to capture (at para. 126):
Indeed, it may be doubted that such a day may even come. The evidence indicates no significant religious, cultural or legal tradition, anywhere in the world, that includes among its tenets polyandrous or same-sex multi-partner unions. There are five affidavits from polyandrous polyamorists in Canada, but it may be doubted whether any of them is in a polygamous marriage or conjugal union within the prima facie scope of section 293 - none of the relationships has been of long-standing (it appears the longest has endured three years), none involves a sanctioning authority or external influence, and the parties appear to consider themselves bound only as long as they choose. [Emphasis added.]

Originally Posted by trescool View Post

Anyway, I expect this ruling to be challenged.
Cross your fingers.

Originally Posted by trescool View Post
In the meantime, it made me think about the necessity of having a better survey out there for who's all been in a COHABITATING polyamorous relationship, since this ruling was veryclear that sex with multiple partners was NOT illegal, nor was sex with someone else while you're married, etc. The interest would be to see who is involved in polyamory in a numbers way. I have a number of contacts that could get such a survey rolling on a national scale.... anyone interested in this?
Absolutely my thoughts as well. As I said, decriminalization will hopefully pave the way for poly's to be more willing to stand up and be counted. Hopefully others will be inclined to join as well when they understand that s.293 could impact them as well. Swingers who find their unicorn for example? What if she moves it? The decision applies to multipartner same-sex households as well. This law does have far wider implications than just polyamory.

Originally Posted by Tonberry View Post
Also, incredibly anticlimactic. A whole year for this? Man I knew the law liked to take its time, but that much?
Actually it's been more like 2 years, and it's going by quickly! Keep in mind that while Homosexuality was decriminalized in 1968-69, it wasn't until various provincial court decisions started around 2002 and parliaments eventual introduction of the Civil Marriage act in 2005 that same-sex marriage became legal. Over 35 years.

No matter what way you slice it, this is going to be a long haul.
“People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.” - Chinese Proverb

-Imaginary Illusion

How did I get here & Where am I going?

Last edited by ImaginaryIllusion; 11-27-2011 at 08:07 AM.
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