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      Get Smart on the Web   09/16/2016

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How to get to supreme court to Legalize the 1st cousin marriage

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Guest Turk   
Guest Turk

Hello all,

 

My name is Turk and I used to live in Texas before I found out that I am not able to live in Texas because it is a felony to have sex with your first cousin even though you are legally married.My wife was outside of the states and I had to relocate to a state where first cousin marriage is legal to bring her to states. I truly believe this is bullholy crapoly! and it is against my constitutional right. I am definitely going to court to challenge that rule. If the problem is genetics how about legalize it with Doctor Referral ( DNA Study). But most likely it looks like it is a moral issue and my moral values is nobody`s kissy-faceing business.

Long story short, I am seeing a lawyer to go to court( hoping to supreme court) to come up with a solution to this problem. Nowhere in the world it is forbidden to marry your cousin. So my question is: How do I go with this? Do I go to court in Texas? Or is there a way to go higher court? And my stance is if I am married legally I should be able to have sex with my wife and if you are worried about genetic how about getting a DNA reports showing the defect is not possible( or must have kid through DNA analysis).

I believe someone have to think doing the same think so please feel free to comment.

 

 

 

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Turk, I admire your pluck. I've long said that we are one court challenge away from striking down all of the laws prohibiting marriage nationwide. However, you'll probably have a hard time finding a lawyer willing to do so without a TON of cash up front. If you are successful in finding a lawyer to support you, I won't be surprised if it never makes its way to the Supreme Court without victory, which will make it limited to Texas or its US Court of Appeals region, but that's a huge start and worth doing. Please keep us informed!

 

CM

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Serendipity    68

If you go through with this:  Yay!  It'll have to make its way up the ladder before reaching the Supreme Court and like CC mentioned, will take a barrell full of money.  Your lawyer will be able to advice you on the best course of action.

If I may, Please don't broach the submit of genetic testing with anyone unless it's to vehemently oppose it.  We don't make African American couples test for Sickle Cell or Jews test for Tay-Sachs, so why should we be subjected to genetic testing?

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LadyC    99

a little bit of information though.

until about ten years or so ago, first cousins could legally marry in texas. texas can not go back retroactively and forbid married cousins who married legally under the law to have sex... nor can they forbid a married couple who married (legally) in some other state before moving here from having sex. if they tried to come after you on those grounds, i would imagine you'd be able to find plenty of lawyers to file on your behalf without paying cash up front.  but if you are legally married, i wouldn't worry about it anyway. are you going to call the police and tell them you're having sex with your wife? this is essentially the same thing as the sodomy laws in texas that got overturned... homosexual sex was illegal... but unless the police witnessed you having sex there was no grounds for arrest and certainly no evidence for a lawsuit.

now, if i understand you correctly, your wife is not an american citizen and is currently trying to get a visa to come over here. where did you marry your wife? and where were you residing at the time that you married? because i'm thinking that if you were not a resident of texas at the time of your marriage, then texas shouldn't be able to stand in the way of you getting her a visa to come here. in that case, you should probably check with an attorney. try to get a free consultation with an immigration attorney and then you'll know whether it would be worth challenging in court or if you'd be better off relocating to oklahoma or another nearby state that is more cousin friendly, assuming that you are close enough to a state line to commute back and forth to work.

as for the reason for texas changing the law, it had nothing to do with genetic risks. here's the chain of events that led to some slimy politician sneaking this new law into some bill that hand absolutely nothing to do with marriage or family in the first place (thereby getting it passed without anyone knowing it was even happening until it was too late.)..

it's all about this guy named warren jeffs. he was the leader of a small band of fundamentalist mormons who practiced polygamy in utah, in spite of the fact that polygamy was and is illegal. not only did he lead this group of polygamists, he arranged the abusive marriages of very young girls to much older relatives. i'm not sure of the timeline, but he moved his group to texas, where cousin marriage was legal. 

cousin marriage WAS legal here at the time. (yes, i'm a native texan and i'm married to my cousin... married him here in texas in '99). but polygamy has never been legal here, nor was arranging unconsentual marriages of minor girls to adult men, related or not. and even if the girls  thought they were consenting, by texas law, they can't legally give consent until they are over 17. these girls were as young as 12 years old.

at some point, jeffs and at least some of his group were living in las vegas. i remember this well, because my husband and i lived in vegas at the time. jeffs was arrested, which was HUGE news because at the time, he was on the fbi's 10 most wanted list, and was extradited to utah where he was charged with being an accomplice to rape as well as other sexual assault charges. one of these was for his personal assault on his nephew, and other was for arranging the marriage of a 14 year old to her adult male cousin. he was convicted on both counts, but the conviction got overturned because of a technicality.  he also had been indicted on 8 counts of sexual assault and incest in the state of arizona, but i don't remember that ever going to trial.

so in the middle of all those rape charges and trials and prison time, texas wanted to strengthen their case. honestly, i don't think it needed any strengthening. in my opinion, what jeffs was doing was the same as human trafficking... these marriages weren't legal. they weren't even filed with any state. the girls were too young to consent to what they were doing. they were being forced into sexual relationships and being told it was God's will. but some politician thought "oh cool, we'll just slip this bill into some other bill, and get it passed so that cousin marriages aren't legal anymore, and then we can prosecute warren jeffs.

during a raid on his texas ranch, evidence was turned up that he'd arranged the illegal 'marriages' of more than 70 girls, and about 20+ of those were very young... as young as 12 years old. he also took wives from among those for himself. he often apparently recorded or videotaped his assaults on his 'wives', and when his utah conviction was overturned in 2010 and he was released from prison there, he was extradited here where he went to trial it  for the rape of two of his own wives... one was 12, and one was 15. (the 15 year old was also the mother of one of his children). the tapes and some of his journals became part of the evidence against him, and the jury sentenced him to two consecutive life sentences after a whopping 30 minutes of deliberation.

 

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pooch    17

LadyC,

Then what happened to  this Warren Jeffs? What is the relationship  of his case to marriage laws and how it affects cousin relationships in where you are? :mellow:

 

'Pooch

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Serendipity    68

Jeffs has been sentenced to life in prison.  He was extradited to Texas and convicted there (the FLDS church has a ranch in Texas) and that's where he got his final sentence.  

If I interpret LadyC's post correctly, she is saying that once all of this was out in public, Texas lawmakers got scared and in an effort to not seem sympathetic to polygamy, the state threw the baby out with the bath water and made cousin marriage illegal.  

 

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It was done in anticipation of being able to prosecute them at a later date. The law was in reaction to them moving in well before any of the stuff came out. While I don't disagree that Jeffs is human debris worthy of every conviction he got and more, I am disgusted with how Texas went about it. First, they targeted a group just because they were unusual and different and of a peculiar religion. They had no real evidence at that time of underage or illegal marriages (other than polygamous "spiritual" marriages) but did know that first cousin marriage was more common in that particular community than average so they stacked the deck.

Second, they confiscated all of the children and even some adults they "believed" might be under 18 based on an anonymous phone call that turned out to be from someone in Colorado with a shady past who was never prosecuted for her part in that bizarre situation. I smell a rat.

Third, because the community held all property in common, the state confiscated all of the property, (i.e. homes) of everyone, including the majority who were demonstrably legal in their family situations... all because a handful of lawmakers in the state were angry that this group had set up their new homes there.

Again, I'm glad Jeffs is in prison and hope he rots as he deserves (and his select scumbag accomplices). But as an American, I find it completely unacceptable that literally everyone willingly turned a blind eye to the Constitutional rights of so many people just because they're "weird".

Sorry... had to rant a bit. I still get angry when I think of how the whole "Yearning for Zion Ranch" thing went down

CM

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pooch    17
1 hour ago, Serendipity said:

Jeffs has been sentenced to life in prison.  He was extradited to Texas and convicted there (the FLDS church has a ranch in Texas) and that's where he got his final sentence.  

If I interpret LadyC's post correctly, she is saying that once all of this was out in public, Texas lawmakers got scared and in an effort to not seem sympathetic to polygamy, the state threw the baby out with the bath water and made cousin marriage illegal.  

Okay, I understand...

But what I do not understand is the relationship of polygamy and cousin marriage. Those are entirely separate things. How are the two connected insofar as law?

Pooch

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They weren't connected at all. The lawmakers who hated the FLDS moving in was looking for any way to make them outlaws to add as many verifiable charges as possible to make at least something stick. It's why sex with your first cousin in Texas is a more severe crime than sex with your sibling and in their haste, they neglected to exempt legally married people (also because it would have exempted some of the very people they were targeting). They may not be able to prove polygamy but they can prove marriage to a cousin or possibly sex with a cousin and that would be enough if they couldn't get them on underage sex.

 

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LadyC    99

they can't do anything to cousins who are legally married already. that would be back to the whole sodomy law thing. it would never see inside the courtroom.

but right, polygamy and cousin marriage are two separate issues. it just happens that the FLDS group was doing both. so as coloradomarried points out, the lawmakers felt they needed to stiffen the laws to make sure something stuck. kinda like throwing spaghetti against a wall. polygamy was already illegal. but since that might fail in the courtroom, let's make some other things illegal too, so that if they get off on some charges, maybe other charges will succeed. and it worked. he got life. not on the polygamy charges, but on the incest and rape charges.

i wasn't aware of some of what coloradomarried is angry about. from what he's saying, yep, that's just plain wrong... violating constitutional rights of many to prosecute the few. my own beef has always been that i personally feel that people's rights were violated (even if the law wasn't broken) in the way that they passed the law... under the cover of some bill that had nothing at all to do with marriage or family or anything of the sort... just slip it into something else so that nobody notices until it is too late. that SHOULD be illegal, but i guess it isn't, since it is done all the time on both state and national levels.

totally off subject, CM, remind me never to bring up david koresh! ;) oh wait... i just did!

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