Personally, I'm in favor of marriage. The public declaration of fealty steers the focus of any marital problems onto resolution rather than dissolution. However, I don't think the question should be, "Should gay couples be allowed to marry?". It should be, "Why is the government involved, AT ALL, in how people wish to structure their households?".

We should be relying on government for assistance in enforcing contracts. But how these contracts are structured should be entirely up to the people involved. This, of course, includes people who wish to structure their households around participation by more than two individuals.

I guess there needs to be a set of default contracts (to protect children and establish ownership of chattels, etc.) which are deemed to be in effect when people share a household; but, other than that, the government should have no role. 

I know that polygamy facilitates some injustices that never occur in "traditional" marriages <joke>, but is polygamy sufficiently evil by its nature to require the government to ban it?

Tags: marriage, polygamy

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I think it might be time to remind you that the tirade you directed at me was directed toward the person who opened this thread with a defense of polygamy. You're railing against someone simply trying to introduce principles (more accurately, trying to dismiss "principles") that may have contributed to governments all over the world finding it necessary to outlaw polygamy. Your introduction of "teach the controversy" is a fallacy. If there were a legitimate controversy, it should be taught - but there's not. It's just the opposite. I would say there is (almost) NO controversy about polygamy. The prohibition of polygamy is almost as widely accepted as evolution. I would LIKE there to be more of a controversy - more intelligent debate about the subject.
If you don't like my anthropological principle, great. That's what I was hoping for. Now what did YOU learn in Anthropology that contradicts this?
You constantly return to your anecdotal cases. It doesn't matter if you cite 6 successful relationships or 50, it's still anecdotal. Anecdotal evidence in support of a postulation adds strength. But you seem to be saying, "I'm TELLING you it works for me (and my friends). How dare you deny it as (general) FACT."

See, while you're talking in theory - and theory mainly based on crackpot studies in misogynist cultures, we're talking in practice. The fact of the polyamory movement being female driven in not anecdotal, it's empirical. The comments that you are claiming translate to 'this works for me and my friends' really state 'of a large number of self-identified polyamorous people, amongst whom Joreth is a well-connected community leader, the *majority* of people pushing for acceptance of responsible, equal non-monogamy are female'. This is not an anecdotal statement - why? Because we're talking percentages, not individual stories. If you can measure it in numbers it's not a fricking anecdote, okay?

However, the statement you made was a generic one, of the type 'all As are Bs', and in fact it only takes one example to disprove such a statement. So the single data point that Joreth provides ought damn well to be enough.

 

Anthropology is the study of communities. We're telling you there is a large existing community of polyamorous people who do *not* have gender imbalance issues within the community. There is no shortage of women, and nor is there a shortage of men. Within the community of polyamorous people there is a roughly equal gender balance. Women clearly *are*, when given the option, just as likely to choose multi-partner relationships as men.
There is a growing community of women, both in the US, and the UK, who have been given (in actual fact, demanded) the option of having multiple partnerships, and they take it. There's your anthropology data right there, where you keep ignoring it.

 

A more interesting question might be whether women are more often drawn to a particular *kind* of multi-partner relationship than men are. I note that whilst the polyamory movement is strongly female-led, other forms of non-monogamy such as swinging may be less so. If you really can't resist the evo-psych nonsense, have a crack at that one.

There's a Church in Texas who's looking for women to join them for polygamy - must be under 18 and virgin to join.

Here's an operational mathematics question for you: Create a balanced system with cooperating nodes A and B, where these are in equal ratio, with single A and multible B or single B and multiple A connections, without the presumption that A and B has the same preference in multiple vs dual connections.

 

Thanks. I'm definitely a fan of gender balance. BTW, I don't "keep" doing anything regarding this thread. When it started getting heated, I backed out for 12 pages or so.

What my friend said about gender roles SEEMED reasonable. Reminds me of our recent earthquake predictions, which this publicity seeker whom the press nicknamed Mr. Moon, said he could make. The theory was that the proximity and phase of the moon were sufficient to trigger earthquakes. His theory was that if these gravitational forces are enough to virtually lift up the ocean, surely they could give the tectonic plates enough of a kick to push them over the edge. Seems quite reasonable. The unfortunate fact is that studies have been done starting a hundred years ago. It seems there is NO direct statistical correlation between lunar phases and proximity and major earthquakes. Great! Done deal, as far as I'm concerned. 

Further I'm perfectly happy to learn your "findings".

Because we're talking percentages, not individual stories. If you can measure it in numbers it's not a fricking anecdote, okay?

Okay! And the numbers are...? :-)

Isn't forming an hypothesis the first step of the scientific method? Do you really think that proffering such hypotheses for the expressed purpose of learning warrants attacks such as "crackpot" and "nonsense"? Why do you believe that presenting facts which contradict an hypothesis must be accompanied by such loss of composure?

I don't think polygamy by nature is any more evil than monogamous, male/female marriages. It's the people in the relationships that make them good or evil. 

 

One statement that almost always gets me in trouble on forums is saying that the abuses that exist in polygamist relationships also occur in monogamous, male/female ones, and shear numbers-wise, much much more in "traditional" marriages and households. 

 

Okay, sure we don't have the instance of child brides; but molestation, emotional abuse, and physical abuse all happen in "traditional" marriages. But for some reason nobody is saying "traditional" marriages need to be banned. Nobody blames these evils on the relationship structure as they do with plural relationships.

 

So whether a relationship works or not is not dependent on it's configuration, it's depended on he quality of the people involved in it.

Very good post. I have often stated that the 'marriage' contract should not be 'for' two adults. IMO contracts' only purpose are the ones you stated... care of children and division of goods. Love and sexual choices should not be subject to any contract whatsoever and people who get hitched, just so they can have a piece of paper to hold them together... blah.

Also agreed that there should be zero tax incentives to marriage or procreation. There are plenty of humans on the planet, we don't need tax payers' money subsidising more of us.

As for 'collecting wives'... men do that outside polygyny anyway. If we include the act of reproduction in the definition of 'wife collecting', I'd really like to see a stat on the percentage of men who's offspring (at least those they know of) are with different momas... I know several men who've procreated with at least three. A similar stat to see how many male genitors women have procreated with would of course also be interesting.

Of course the male stats will be biased to the lower end since a great many babies are born to 'unknown' fathers. Also, such stats would need to ensure that babies are assigned numerically to their biological parents, not their adoptive parents, to ensure unicity.

I see two principal differences between polygyny and 1M-1F marriages:

1-Caring for previous relationships. Our one-on-one system allows males to be gone, and leave previous wife and offspring dangled.

2-Physical/mental abuse. This is often mentioned, and we know it is present in polygynist clans. However, IMO the mistreatment of various family members is due to the very nature of them operating outside the law (in the same vein as alcohol and drug prohibitions being the root cause of violence, not the consumption of the product itself).

Some people bring up 'the poor males who won't get a mate' statistically. I don't buy that. Not all humans need to mate/breed, we don't all want to, and certainly we should not all of us breed. Social codes insisting that each male get his assigned female is a modern human construct meant to ensure patriarchal rule.

I doubt anyone would do it but marry who you like, whether you are man or woman, a bisexual person could have a husband and a wife, i see nothing wrong with thst as long as everyone consents to their spouse getting married to someone else as well. as regards to tax breaks i don't see why they should exist anyway.

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