You might call it “Free sex for me, but not for thee.” It’s not prostitution if you call it “temporary marriage.” Meanwhile, a man’s other wife or wives will be sitting ducks for whatever venereal diseases hubby brings home, and may even end up getting blamed as a cover story.
And everyone knows that nothing strengthens the bonds of holy matrimony and the fabric of society like temporary polygamous unions contracted in secret. What could go wrong? An update on this story. “Iran rejects obligation to register temporary marriages,” by Farshid Motahari for Deutsche Presse-Agentur, March 6 (thanks to The Religion of Peace):
Tehran (dpa) — The Iranian parliament rejected a draft bill Monday which would have obliged men to register temporary marriages, Fars news agency reported.
The bill was aimed at increasing the rights of women who become the second or third wives of polygamous men, in a practice used to get around a religious ban on sex outside marriage.
Unregistered temporary marriages are those made by clerics — de facto only making the couple religiously legitimate — but without any written contract which could at least give some rights to the women.
The bill was rejected by a majority of deputies.
Temporary marriage — or Siqeh — is a highly controversial issue in Iran.
The supporters, mainly among clergy circles and religious people, say that it is a legitimate way to counter social immoralities.
But opponents term Siqeh as a legalized form of prostitution and a humiliation for women.
Sexual relations between unmarried couples are strictly prohibited in Islamic Iran and can lead to arrest and heavy cash fines.
Islamic law allows men to have four wives at the same time, while women are only allowed one husband.
Temporary marriage is virtually unheard of among modern Iranian families, but some traditional and religious families still turn to the practice.
High living costs and unemployment also drive some young people who cannot afford to get officially married to choose the Siqeh option.
Siqeh allows couples to live like husband and wife, but the bond is neither officially registered in identification cards, nor can children from these marriages obtain legal rights.