ďFreedom is not merely the opportunity to do as one pleases; neither is it merely the opportunity to choose between set alternatives. Freedom is, first of all, the chance to formulate the available choices, to argue over themóand then the opportunity to choose.Ē C. Wright Mills

            Good morning ladies and gentlemen. My name is Amanda and Iím thrilled to be here and have a chance to defend my lifestyle. My family hasnít been blessed with the opportunity to live this sacred principle yet but Iím associated with many friends and other direct family members who are living polygamy. The love and support I receive from these people is incredible and I wouldnít want to be around a different group of people. Being where I am and doing what I believe is one of few choices that has given me so many blessings and opportunities. I only wish I could change the stigma society has about polygamy. I canít see how itís wrong for consenting adults to enter into a very sacred convenient with each other when theyíre not harming anyone. Polygamy isnít the horror story you might think it is. Itís true that the story changes with groups and individuals but I rarely come across what society might call terrible in my community.

            Iíve been to many schools, lived in several locations, and had a variety of religions to choose from. I chose the work Joseph Smith Jr. restored in itís entirety because by contrast, everything is brought to your sense, and after all the contrast I had growing up with divorced parents, the Work is the only thing that made sense to me. I see Celestial marriage as a blessing not a burden and although Iím not married yet, itís celestial marriage or bust for me.

            Now I canít say that my life is always a bed of roses, find me someone who honestly can, but I know every thorn I come across is an opportunity in disguise. My family and religion helped me see that. You are free to choose what you want in your life and the same applies to me. I choose this lifestyle and no amount of money, promises, or chocolate will change my mind.

            Thank you for your time.