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Cultural accommodation where child marriage is the issue


bcsapper

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Taking the "cultural accommodation" issue from the chess player thread a little further. (ok, a lot further)

I came across this article this morning.

At first glance it seems pretty obvious. Wrong. Very Wrong. But then you read about the effect on the vulnerable of not allowing the practice. Suicide attempts, in a couple of cases, and it gets more complicated.

Still against it, but not as comfortably so.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-37518289

Edited by bcsapper
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It is a tough situation. It reminds me of a tribe I read about many years ago in New Guinea (I think) in which 12-year-old boys were selected by older males. The boys lived with the men, including having sexual relations with them, until they were of marriage age, when they married females. Sounds horrific, but it seems the boys not chosen were devastated and it affected their standing in the tribe thereafter. The boys who were chosen seemed to suffer no ill-effect and were considered better marriage material. Things like this makes immorality such a context-specific word.

I don't agree that very young people should have to get married, but in that specific context, perhaps it was absolutely the best and most moral thing for them. Perhaps ensuring they now have the choice and support to leave or stay is the most moral way forward.

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It is a tough situation. It reminds me of a tribe I read about many years ago in New Guinea (I think) in which 12-year-old boys were selected by older males. The boys lived with the men, including having sexual relations with them, until they were of marriage age, when they married females. Sounds horrific, but it seems the boys not chosen were devastated and it affected their standing in the tribe thereafter. The boys who were chosen seemed to suffer no ill-effect and were considered better marriage material. Things like this makes immorality such a context-specific word.

I don't agree that very young people should have to get married, but in that specific context, perhaps it was absolutely the best and most moral thing for them. Perhaps ensuring they now have the choice and support to leave or stay is the most moral way forward.

I hope you're not saying that should be allowed in a Western Nation. That's, pretty clearly, pedophilia. But who are we to judge right? :rolleyes:

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So? Islam is a major religion of over 1 billion people. I'd be getting used to the new normal.

It's okay. The Prophet married a six year old.

It's not Islam, or the cultural practice of marrying a kid that's in question. (That's not to say it shouldn't be)

It's the European response to the issue that I posted about. Obviously there is an automatic response. Forget it. Stay home if you want to marry a kid, and wait to catch up to the world. But given the situation of the individuals in question, it's not that easy.

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It's not Islam, or the cultural practice of marrying a kid that's in question. (That's not to say it shouldn't be)

It's the European response to the issue that I posted about. Obviously there is an automatic response. Forget it. Stay home if you want to marry a kid, and wait to catch up to the world. But given the situation of the individuals in question, it's not that easy.

The world is FULL of damned if you do, damned if you don't choices. They'd be chattel in the home country if under Islamic Law and none of us the wiser or care. Child brides are just the new norm in some places where the culture permits. And Islam trumps all re: culture. Canada will be no different.

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They're children who are being abused... the state should take them away and find parents for them... not leave them with a pedophile because they're "married".

ETA:

And the "husband" (pedophile) should be immediately jailed and then deported.

Edited by The_Squid
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The world is FULL of damned if you do, damned if you don't choices. They'd be chattel in the home country if under Islamic Law and none of us the wiser or care. Child brides are just the new norm in some places where the culture permits. And Islam trumps all re: culture. Canada will be no different.

Yep, that's what I was on about.

I assume right now Canada has every intention of being different, just as Europe does. How do you do it without having individuals try and commit suicide over it?

I remember a dicussion on here about a minor who was suffering, in great pain, from an incurable condition. I advocated granting her wish for assisted suicide, even though she was a minor. I still would.

The question I ask myself is, how is that different from granting the wish of a minor to remain with a man she feels safe with, in a situation where the alternative might lead her to try and kill herself?

I do understand that is oversimplfying the issue, but I tend to look at issues from the perspective of the individuals involved, not the groups.

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They're children who are being abused... the state should take them away and find parents for them... not leave them with a pedophile because they're "married".

ETA:

And the "husband" (pedophile) should be immediately jailed and then deported.

They're not always older. The article provided not so cut and dry examples where the bride is 15 and the husband is 18.

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They're not always older. The article provided not so cut and dry examples where the bride is 15 and the husband is 18.

And in Canada the legal age of consent used to be 14 unless the person was in a position of authority over the younger party, then it was 18. The 14 limit was changed to 16. So a 16 year old can consent to sex and marry anyone, so long as they're not a cop, teacher, employer, judge, or someone else in a position of trust. Recently, Canada refused to send a 43 year old woman back to the United States because she faced 40 some odd years in prison for having consensual sex with a 17 year old. Our legal system saw this as cruel and unusual punishment, so it refused the request to extradite her. Most people don't think of the grey areas for these kinds of laws. Hell, I bet most people think 18 is the age of consent. That's why we have courts.

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You suggested that a case of obvious pedophilia has its merits because there's a context attached to it.

Yeah. I would like to explore this more, but it would take us off-topic. Suffice to say that I think the tribe I described presents a similar dilemma to the child-marriage in the OP.

Should there not ever be moral absolutes?

I think that's an interesting question, thanks for asking. I do think there are moral absolutes.

Edited by dialamah
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The only solution that I can come up with (and even it would be far from imperfect) would be that any spouse under the age of fifteen automatically becomes single at the age of fifteen and must remarry his spouse.

Yet I can see a problem even with that. Imagine a fourteen-year-old married to a twelve-year-old. My proposal would mean that as soon as the fourteen-year-old reaches the age of fifteen (in which case the younger spouse would only be thirteen), the marriage would become automatically dissolved and the thirteen-year-old could not remarry the fifteen-year-old until he reaches the age of fifteen too, thus forcing them apart for over a year.

So even that is not a good solution.

The only other solution I could see would be to promote some kind of international standard at the UN. I'd say fifteen ought to be the minimum, and even then only with the consent of all living parents at least until the age of 22 (in China, a man cannot marry before 22).

Another solution would be to require any marriage to be contracted in the EU in which at least one of the intended spouses is a foreign national to be a monogamous family-marriage contract. This would mean that the marriage contract itself would include a monogamy clause with financial civil consequences to the other spouse should a spouse violate the clause. Since it would be entrenched in a civil contract, it could be transfered to another jurisdiction should the couple move to a jurisdiction where polygamy is permitted.

Furthermore, since it would be a family-contract, all living parents must sign it too. This would mean that even if, once abroad, a person succeeds in pressuring his spouse to agree to revise the contract, he must pressure his and her living parents to agree to revise it too. Since even states that allow polygamy still recognize civil contracts, the contract would still be applicable abroad too.

This stil would leave the loophole of a person simply marrying his first spouse abroad so as to circumvent this. And it is hard to not recognize a legal marriage contracted abroad no matter the age of the spouse. Again, that brings us back to international pressure to recognize a marriage not before the age of fifteen in all states along with required living parental consent until at least 22 if not even later if there is even a cap. Until that is done, there is no way to stop the loophole without causing more harm than good. We ought to recognize a legal marriage if it was legally contracted in the jurisdiction in which it was contracted.

I like the Tunisian model to a degree. There, you cannot legally contract a polygamous marriage (though it does occur illegally just as it does in Toronto, but Tunisia also has fornication laws to deal with that), but it will acknowledge a polygamous marriage that is legaly contracted abroad. In short, it acknoledges the reality of what is and what is not within its reasonable control. In that sense, the EU might even want to partner up with Tunisia to promote the Tunisian model in more states. As more states adopt the Tunisian model, it would become ever more difficult to find a state that will allow the contracting of a polygamous marriage, yet a state will not break one apart once established. A nice balance there.

Age is a seprate matter, but they are related in that the stem from the same problem: different jurisdictions recognize different marriage laws, yet once married, the marriage follows the couple to whatever jurisdiction he goes. For this reason, establishing an international standard of some kind is essential.

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There are some occasions when you must take into consideration that people coming from different parts of the world have different customs.

Child-marriage is not one of those occasions. Child-marriage is 100% wrong and there are no excuses. Zero tolerance for such a thing is needed.

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There are some occasions when you must take into consideration that people coming from different parts of the world have different customs.

Child-marriage is not one of those occasions. Child-marriage is 100% wrong and there are no excuses. Zero tolerance for such a thing is needed.

Child marriage is defined as a formal or informal union occurring when the person is under the age of 18.

In Canada, marriage as young as 16 is allowed with parental consent. In the States most minimums are 16, but kids as young as 12 can marry under certain circumstances.

Couldn't find any stats on how many marriages in Canada or the States occur before the age of 18, although I assume not many. The article above mentions around 4,000 since 2000, in the States.

I'm all for banning child-marriage, but I think we should get our own house in order before we slam other countries and cultures.

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....Couldn't find any stats on how many marriages in Canada or the States occur before the age of 18, although I assume not many. The article above mentions around 4,000 since 2000, in the States.

Since when do "Canadian values" have anything to do with what happens in the "States" ?

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