A dating website dedicated to helping married Muslim men find a second wife is gaining traction among the Islamic communities in the US and UK–while attracting scorn from liberals.
SecondWife.com looks like your average dating site. It allows for the creation of user profiles and has visitors go through a questionnaire to determine compatibility.
The main difference between the site and more popular platforms like eHarmony is, of course, that SecondWife.com is exclusively targeted at married Muslim men on the hunt for a second spouse and women who don’t mind getting together with a taken man.
The site was founded by British-born entrepreneur Azad Chaiwala, Fox News reports. Its business address is listed as being in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The creators of SecondWife.com describe it as a Muslim polygamy matchmaking service. We set up this service as we believed this is a Sunnah we needed to revive. This service is for practising Muslims who are seeking marriage and accept polygamy as lifestyle.”
The front page even offers a definition of “polygamist”: “A polygamist is someone who practices polygamy. Most commonly this will be one man with multiple wives and this is becomes family unit. All the wives are friends and are to be treated as equals.”
The site’s header features a quote from the Quran: “then marry women of your choice, two or three, or four but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly, then only one.”
Chaiwala says his site has more than 25,000 registered users across 163 countries. As with any dating website, the vast majority appear to be men unable to court women in the real world.
In the US, SecondWife.com has about 1,600 profiles of men–compared to just 304 for women. In the UK, where the site has been more heavily promoted, there are 4,000 men’s profiles–but only 261 women.
The controversial match-making site has glowing reviews from some users. One testimonial reads:
“I like how privacy is the main focus of this site. I feel comfortable as all my pictures are private and users need authorisation before seeing them. I can also browse profiles for compatibility without revealing myself searching.”
Another testimonial states:
The site is really easy to use and mobile friendly. A site that cares about the lifestyle of polygamy and really takes the effort to guide people properly.
Not everyone is so enamored by the polygamy site’s user-friendliness.
Politicians and women’s activists are lashing out at SecondWife.com for its promotion of polygamy, which is illegal in Britain, as well as in the US.
Even in the US, where polygamy is most often associated with fundamentalist Mormon sects, Black Muslim communities in cities like Chicago and Detroit have the highest prevalence of plural marriage.
The most prominent criticisms come from members of the UK’s left-wing Labour Party, which tends to favor Muslim migration.
Jess Phillips, a Labour Party member of the House of Commons, said “The popularity of this site worries me deeply. This site should be outlawed for U.K. use and follow the law in the U.K., which does not allow this…Women are not a commodity, they are not domestic slaves. People cannot be collected like ornaments.”
— true success (@DiscoverTruth1) September 12, 2017
Nevertheless, it remains unlikely that liberals like Phillips will wake up to the connection between the polygamist culture they detest and the Muslim faith they encourage.