Mar 23, 2007, NY Times:
She worked at the Red Lobster in Times Square and lived with her husband near Yankee Stadium. Yet one night, returning home from her job, Odine D. discovered that African custom, not American law, held sway over her marriage.
A strange woman was sitting in the living room, and Ms. D.’s husband, a security guard born in Ghana, introduced her as his other wife.
Devastated, Ms. D., a Guinean immigrant who insisted that her last name be withheld, said she protested: “I can’t live with the woman in my house — we have only two bedrooms.” Her husband cited Islamic precepts allowing a man to have up to four wives, and told her to get used to it. And she tried to obey.
Polygamy in America, outlawed in every state but rarely prosecuted, has long been associated with Mormon splinter groups out West, not immigrants in New York. But a fatal fire in a row house in the Bronx on March 7 revealed its presence here ...
The city’s mourning for the dead — a woman and nine children in two families from Mali — has been followed by a hushed double take at the domestic arrangements described by relatives: Moussa Magassa, the Mali-born American citizen who owned the house and was the father of five children who perished, had two wives in the home, on different floors. Both survived.
No one knows how prevalent polygamy is in New York. Those who practice it have cause to keep it secret: under immigration law, polygamy is grounds for exclusion from the United States.
Under state law, bigamy can be punished by up to four years in prison.
... the picture that emerges from dozens of interviews with African immigrants, officials and scholars of polygamy is of a clandestine practice that probably involves thousands of New Yorkers.
Mar 7, 2008, Lisa Schiffren
A Polygamist State of Mind:
In any event, now that a year has passed since the fire, the Post decided to catch up with Moussa Magassa and his family, which is growing again. Manthia, 36, the mother of the four dead children, gave birth on January 4 to a son. Aisse, 25, gave birth to twins the very next day at the same hospital. (One of the twins, the girl, died a few weeks later.) But Mr. Magassa’s family is also growing in another way: Lo and behold, in the interim, he has taken an additional wife — and now lives with all three. The new, youngest one is named Niekale ...Lawrence Auster:
It’s time for the Magassas to be sent home, and for an example to be made so we can avoid the situation the French find themselves in. France has so many people living in polygamous families — somewhere between 200,000 and 400,000 — that politicians are powerless to rein in the practice, since the polygamists can vote and riot, and they have the critical mass in their own neighborhoods to elect their own representatives. Nor do they assimilate. If we allow the same thing to occur here, the next thing you know, parts of the United States will live under sharia law. Failure to prosecute is an invitation to just that.
Lisa Schiffren ... Departing from neoconservative orthodoxy, she recognizes that the people who follow such practices are not assimilable in our society; that they should be made to leave ... if people who practice polygamy should be expelled from America and should be kept out of America, not just because polygamy is against the law here, but because, as you argue, their increase among us will inevitably result in sharia being imposed in this country, then doesn't the same argument apply to sharia believers generally? And who are the sharia believers? All believing Muslims. Therefore, by your reasoning, which I fully agree with, all believing Muslims should be kept from immigrating into America, and the ones who are already here should be encouraged to leave (if they are citizens), or made to leave (if they are not).And, since I'm in the mood, Lisa Schiffren can have a standing ovation too.
And, before I sit down, one more round of applause for Lawrence Auster for relentlessly leading the way.