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Child Marriages in the USA is not a “Muslim Problem”

“They are for child marriages”. Who has not heard that myth about Islam and Muslims? But what about the USA? There are states in the USA that allow marriages of children aged 12,13 or 14, and has done so since the 1700s and 1800s. And guess what? It is mainly a “Christian” problem.

Most states in the USA prohibit child marriages, but not all, and there are “exceptions” in most states that allow minors to marry if a court okays it even if the minimum age is higher.

In Virginia 12 year-old’s were allowed to marry until last year when the minimum age was raised.

Between 2004 and 2013, 4,500 children under the age of 18 were married in the state, with more than 200 of them younger than 15. State authorities decided they had enough of this grossness and abolished laws that allowed parental and judicial consent for girls 12 to 13 to get married if they were pregnant.

In New Hamsphire the minimum age is 13:

It’s not often middle-schoolers get married in New Hampshire. But it’s still perfectly legal, after the Republican-led House killed a bill Thursday to raise the marriage age to 18. The rejection leaves intact a state law that lets girls get married as young as age 13 with parental consent and sign-off from a judge. Boys a year older can marry with the same approvals.

In North Carolina the minimum age is 14:

“If an unmarried female who is more than 14 years of age, but less than 16 years of age, is pregnant or has given birth to a child and the unmarried female and the putative father of the child, either born or unborn, agree to marry, or if an unmarried male who is more than 14 years of age, but less than 16 years of age, is the putative father of a child, either born or unborn, and the unmarried male and the mother of the child agree to marry, the register of deeds is authorized to issue to the parties a license to marry; and it shall be lawful for them to marry in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter,”

In New Jersey the minimum age is 18. But children can marry younger, with parental consent. Judges can even allow 13 year old’s to marry.

The minimum marriage age in New Jersey is 18. However, children ages 16 or 17 may wed with “parental consent” (with no process in place to ensure it’s not actually “parental coercion”), and children 15 or younger may wed with judicial approval (with no minimum age below which a judge may no longer approve a marriage, and with no instructions for judges not to approve marriages for couple at ages or with age differences that are considered statutory rape).

The situation

The last case, New Jersey, shows one important thing. There are exceptions to the laws in almost all states, meaning that if the law formally states that the minimum age is 18, the real minimum age might be below that age.

This is how it looks like if one disregards the exceptions.

Eleven other states — Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wisconsin—and the District of Columbia require parties to be at least age 16. Five states require parties to be at least age 15: Hawaii, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland and Utah. Three states require parties to be at least age 14: Alaska, New York and North Carolina. One state requires males to be at least age 14 and females to be at least age 13: New Hampshire. Case law in Massachusetts, but not statute, directs that males must be at least age 14 and females must be at least age 12.

The number of “child marriages” are not high. As PEW research showed the numbers are below 1%. Child marriages in the USA are mainly a problem in some Christian communities, as has been described in several articles in New York Times, Washington Post.


170,000 children were wed between 2000 and 2010 in the USA, in 38 of the 50 states where data was available.

Some people spread myths about the “Muslim threat” and claim that child marriages is an “imported” problem. The “Muslims” are as usual the ones to blame. IT IS NOT AN IMPORTED PROBLEM. The laws of the states are in some cases hundred years old or more and most cases has to do with non Muslims.

Read more: Is Child Marriages a Muslim problem?

Edit – 5/20

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  • Classy.

  • You “did history” in school? Oh, okay then, you must be an expert on the age of consent and marriage then. In exactly what history class in school was that subject covered?

  • Muslims don’t worship Muhammad.

    Pedophilia related to prepubescent children. There is no dispute whatsoever regarding the fact Aisha had reached puberty by the time the marriage was consummated, and thus this is not an appropriate label in any case.

    Again, Muslims don’t worship Muhammad. You seem confused on this point. There is not “trinity” concept in Islam that equates a prophet with God. They are separate, and Muslims only worship God, not prophets.

    As to what you want to worship, that’s entirely up to you, obviously, though not particularly relevant as I see it.

  • Jasper Nadle

    pointless little muslim destroyed cunt

    fuck off out of this world and leave us alone

  • 1DrM

    The problem is you’re an ignorant idiot who doesn’t know his own history. By your own retarded definition, your ancestors were pedophiles, fool. Another worthless product of the broken American school system projecting his weakness onto Muslims.

  • 1DrM

    Another retarded Nazi sewer rat who doesn’t know his own history, and projects his own weakness onto Muslims.

  • Jasper Nadle

    Honey, I did history at school… we didn’t do mohammed tho

    Tell wat, the reception Trump got from 40 muslim countries was better than mohammed

  • Jasper Nadle

    My cousin Bobby married a girl when she was 5.

    Who cares, that’s not my point.

    The world doesn’t worship Bobby (they’d better not do coz he’s a lazy sumbitch).

    The Muslim world venerates a “suspected paedophile”.

    Don’t sound like summon I wanna worship.

  • JD

    Timothy Kane, a New Britain, Connecticut man, has been arrested after sending a threatening email to two openly gay Connecticut lawmakers, state senator Andrew McDonald, and state representative Michael Lawlor.
    …..

    Atheist mom receives death threats after a public school is forced to remove a Ten Commandments monument. Some conservative Christians are angry after a Pennsylvania school district agreed to remove a 6-foot tall granite Ten Commandments monument in front of a public high school
    ……
    Why do all American hate gay marriage and Atheist they are sending death treats..I thought there was ability to discuss, and change, these outdated laws.

  • JD

    point out that, in seventh-century Arabia, adulthood was defined as the onset of puberty. (This much is true, and was also the case in Europe: five centuries after Muhammad’s marriage to Aisha, 33-year-old King John of England married 12-year-old Isabella of Angoulême.) Interestingly, of the many criticisms of Muhammad made at the time by his opponents, none focused on Aisha’s age at marriage.

    According to this perspective, Aisha may have been young, but she was not younger than was the norm at the time Your judging ancient tribal Arabia where Aisha’s union would also have cemented Muhammad’s longstanding friendship with her father, Abu Bakr. As was the tradition in Arabia (and still is in some parts of the world today), marriage typically served a social and political function with today’s laws and rules also point out NO one is sure of the age

    Mary Hathaway (Virginia, 1689) was only 9 when she was married to William Williams. Sir Edward Coke (England, 17th century) made it clear that “the marriage of girls under 12 was normal

  • This is a very tiresome hate monger talking point. The age of Aisha at the time of marriage is not known.

    If you want to say it is, prove it. Hint: the age is not in the primary source, and secondary sources conflict.

  • Fact: Aisha’s age at marriage is not known.

    However even if you could prove she was 9, that in no way “undermines Islam.” It was ***1400 years**** ago. Do you get that?!?

    Learn history and understand that even in the West, the age of marriage was quite low until fairly recently.

  • BPatMann

    At least the Muslims don’t consider it to be a problem. After all, Muhammad had sex with a 9 year old girl.

  • GaribaldiOfLoonwatch

    Your comment is actually completely false and betrays a great ignorance of Islamic law. Second, there were no mass protests against the marriage, that is the definition of false news. There may be instances of religious figures with varying degrees of authority and condemnations opposing such measures. You fall into the same simplistic binary thinking that dominates many who try and discuss Islam.

  • Reynaud

    Wow, it was only last year that Virginia changed its child-marriage laws?

    Where were the protests, the death threats to the politicians who made this change? In recent years lawmakers in Yemen and Pakistan tried to introduce legislation to set a legal adult age for marriage, only to have such measures shut down because Islamic jurisprudence never set a minimum age for marriage. Since Muhammad himself married a minor, it would be an insult to him to raise the legal age.

    In our system we have the ability to discuss, and change, these outdated laws.
    Under Islamic law nothing can be changed because it allegedly achieved perfection some 1000 years ago. Even suggesting change is an affront to the faith.

    This entire article reeks of false equivalency.

  • HSkol

    In MN, children with abusive parents may emancipate themselves from their parents. I myself have not seen a case where an emancipated child was younger than 16. At the point of emancipation, a child must follow the laws prescribed to 18-year-olds, until they turn 21 – at which point they’re legal for everything minus the presidency, of course.

    I’d personally hope that persons would wait until brain maturity (25 or so) before making any decision to marry – just a personal preference. Following the law is more important than my personal views.

  • AJ

    Pediatricians can talk to kids over 13 about sex while shooing the parents out of the door. But if the kiddo is pregnant, it’s the parents’ insurance that would be responsible. The secular society is just worried about the kids being ‘officially married’ but the kids can do all the related work without that seal. It’s hypocrisy at its best. My motto: no sex and no marriage when you can’t deal with the implications of it.

  • mindy1

    Frankly, I think the minimum should be 17 with permission, and 18 without. Let kids be kids.

  • cmyfe .

    Pointless ‘age limits’… can they stop children from having sex? Do they even care?
    Society of today seems to encourage children to have sexual relations without any commitment but only applies superficial and meaningless restrictions on marriage.

  • CowabungaCreeper

    Well, once it’s over 9 and once you’re not a role model it doesn’t count.

    Also I read Joseph was 90 and Mary was 12-14.

  • JD

    How about 16 with someone 60 that was age Mary married Joseph according biblical scholar

  • CowabungaCreeper

    Well 13 is higher than 9 so that makes it okay.

  • Joey Sanders

    Regardless if you look at any religion, child marriages are not accepted to be the norm. Most are conducted by fringe religious groups. Some examples are the Branch Davidians and the Yearning for Zion groups.

    My problem is when certain people try to say that all Muslims believe that child marriages are okay, or that they over report instances of child marriage to make it out to be more common than what it is.

  • AJ

    Minimum age for a marriage means nothing if the same age criterion is not applied for sexual relationships outside marriages. For example if a state sets a minimum age for marriage as 18 but ‘allows’ 13-year olds to have sex, the 18-year marriage limit means nothing. I don’t understand if a 13-year old wouldn’t need a parental permission to have sex, why would they need one if they were getting married since in the strictest sense marriage is having sex. To raise the age for marriage but not for sex seems like a secular manner of doing away with the tradition of marriage before sex.

    For the record, I don’t approve of minors having sex, before marriage or after however the hypocrisy of the those who chastise Muslims or Christians for early marriages but not chastise kids having sex and producing kids outside marriages is astounding. This article presents the hypocrisy of the Christians that ridicule Muslims for doing something that they themselves do however this article fails to present the hypocrisy of secularists that are against the tradition of marriage just because of the concept of it.

  • HSkol

    … and, yet, the “Patriots” – often rural Christian folk who cannot see beyond their own hypocrisy entirely fail to see this. Why? Because, “that’s different”! “They’re different!”

    I often wonder, why so many a blind eye? “Self-preservation” and understanding of mistakes within one’s own setting – without applying as much compassion and/or genuinely legal judgement upon “their own”.

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