Saturday, May 17, 2008

Gay Marriage vs. Polygamy


Few gay marriage advocates are willing to extend their views to include polygamy. Aside from the cultish compounds that push young girls into marriage, there is plenty of "big love" polygamy going on with consenting adults. Polygamy was practiced in the Bible and is practiced by many Muslims today. Why does the topic stop with gay marriage when including this "definition" of marriage? Some conservatives, like myself, want to "conserve" the definition of marriage to maintain a societal tradition that does not extend beyond the scope of normalcy. Liberals are always using the "slippery slope" argument and I offer that to you here. If changing the definition of marriage is to include those who want to marry those of the same gender, why not include those who want to marry multiple spouses? Trust me I can get more creative than polygamy, but I will stop at the multiple spouse argument. I am not advocating polygamy. I am against it. However the hypocrisy is what I am challenging. The Edmund's Act was passed in 1882 declaring that the practice of polygamy is a felony. The law still stands today and yet many cry foul at those still practicing under civilly disobedient circumstances. Gay marriage advocates, are you willing to include all other "definitions" of marriage in your dichotomy, or are these rights extended to the gay community based on a popular social trend?

22 comments:

Paul is a Hermit said...

I think Polygamy will be legal some day. Then Bestiality next. One day, we will find ourselves providing widow(er) benefits to a sheep or other animal.
I'm sure a lawyer will step forward to handle the case and a lawyer to rule in the other lawyer's favor.
As screwed up as our judicial system is, there is every reason to pass a Constitutional amendment that no judge can be a lawyer, because they are never able to understand what they read and want to keep changing a law's intent. Especially referendums passed by voters. Lawyers hate it when the people butt in.
In a system run by lawyers, fat chance on getting that introduced.

namaste said...

hey nik! here i come with my liberal talk. i have no thoughts on polygamy, bestiality, or other life styles out there that i may be clueless about. but when i think of gay marriage, i think of two ppl who love each other, form a partnership, and build a loving home together. there are relationships like that which sustain in harmony for years. and i think it's terrible to imagine one of those partners ending up in a hospital or dead, and their most significant other not having the same legal rights to make decisions on their behalf as persons protected by the institution of marriage. in the event of death, suddenly all their property belongs to the state or some disapproving kin because their partner is not recognized as a relative.

i don't attend gay parades or wave a gay flag. but when it comes to this issue, i don't know what the fuss is all about. restricting the laws on marriage is not going to make gay relationships go away. and please don't use religion as a rationale for why anyone think it's wrong. religion has been used as a rationale for a lot of screwy, sometimes violent practices.

but ALAS, i know we'll have to agree to disagree on this one nik. you're my blog-sis and i love you! we don't have to be clones of each other in thinking. hugs!! later gator. ;)

~m

Nikki said...

Maria, I know we disagree on this and I appreciate your comment and of course we are blog sisters! But my religion is who I am and while you may consider it a rationale I consider it truth and I will not deny what I know to be true though it rings untrue to you...I really only put this up because other blogs are discussing gay marriage and I can't get any of them to answer the polygamy question...but you are a tough cookie and I admire your speaking out on a very HOT TOPIC!! BLOG SISTERS ALL THE WAY! thanks for keeping it real and I am ready for some fun topics...this may be the last of the heavies for a bit as I am tired of the contention. It is hard being the conservative punching bag!! Hugs... hope your weekend is relaxing, when is your trip? :)N


Paul, we may be the only 2 left on the planet with this view and so be it! Thanks for the comment. :)N

Freadom said...

Again, if judges would uphold the law of the land as they are supposed to, we wouldn't be in this predicament. Great post.

Mike said...

Damn those activist judges! How dare they determine the constitutionality of a law? Oh yeah, it's their job.

Maybe some polygamously joined people should sue to have the laws against that type of marriage overturned. They could make a case that their right to equal protection is being violated. I don't see what the big deal is, except that the only polygamists I ever hear about are the religious nut middle aged men raping underage girls. If all people involved are consenting adults, then who cares?

The government shouldn't be in the marriage business anyway. If people want to have the benefits of a committed relationship (taxes, visitation, next of kin, etc.), they should be able to get a civil union. Beyond that, all marriages should be handled by their religious organization.

And Paul, LOL on the bestiality. Why is it conservatives always bring that up? Hmmm... :)

Nikki said...

Hey Mike, the one thing I don't understand about your argument is the government staying out of a government sactioned entity...if marriage is a laissez faire proposition stop seeking governmental recognition...plain and simple. Have a domestic partnership insure who you want, leave all your money to your partner, hospitals already recognize non married partners no one is discriminated against and let the state sactioned entity of marriage be defined by the state who sanctions it.
And as far as bestiality, I almost went incestuous because there really was a brother sister couple in Germany that wanted to get married a few months ago and it was an uproar. haha. thanks for the comments, and good for you for being intellectually consistent in your view. I find a lot of liberals can't quite bring themselves to condone polygamy in the same argument. I only ask for clarity since we will probably never agree...:)N

Paul is a Hermit said...

Mike, I don't know about all us bitter guns and Bible thumpers :) but I mention it because, now and then, someone actually wants to marry their pet.
Unless they can get it into the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, so far, Marriage 1 - Dr. Doolittle 0.

DB said...

Gay marriage is simply two people, like normal marriage. These couples just want the non-religious benefits all committed couples get: survivor rights, tax-filing, health benefits, operation decisions if incapacitated, etc. The current divorce rate is 40% and only getting worse, do you honestly think gays are going to ruin the sanctity of marriage? Will gay marriage ruin your marriage? Will it make you believe in god less? How will it affect you?

Now polygamy (a completely religious practice) is different. As I am unfamiliar with arguments for polygamy, what are their justifications other than religious? Is there a non-religious polygamy compound out there I don't know about? Are any of them fighting for their perceived rights? Are they lobbying congress, their legislators, getting lawyers? It doesn't seem like even they have the arguments for legal marriage if not. If they prove their case without religion, I could care less what consenting adults do. If will not affect me at all.

If you want anyone in California to blame for ruining marriage, blame the anti-gay marriage douches who did a crappy job arguing their case in front of a Republican appointed court. Courts aren't always about who is right, they are about who does a better job arguing their point. (see case in point OJ Simpson if you want to see how easily one group of incompetent people can completely blow a slam dunk case)

Nikki said...

DB, If you are saying that a 2 person marriage is "normal" then you are saying that there is a "normalcy" to marriage. A line that should not be crossed into multiples. Why can't I place limits on normalcy in gender? You are saying that a 2 person marriage is normal a multiple person marriage is not. I am saying marriage between a man and a woman is normal and marriage between a man and a man is not. I don't see how the religiosity of polygamy is an argument against their definition of marriage. Now you have 2 strikes against polygamists. Their right of freedom of religion and their right to civilly join together in happy union union union union. Why does the polygamy union have to be non-religious? It is illegitmate if it is religious? There are practicing polygamists in SLC who are not raping young girls. I went to school with polygamists and the majority are good citizens and keep to themselves. The scary ones are the ones out in the middle of nowhere hiding. I am not advocating for a comeback of polygamy and the church is in no way in support of it, I am merely throwing out a curve ball in the gay marriage argument.
I explained to Mike, I would be happy to explain my religious views to you but you think religion is illogical so getting you to understand my belief is a waste of time. If you really want a religious explanation I would be happy to give one. And I certainly do not want to invite ridicule from those who do not believe as I do. I am not one of those who believes in only one aspect of my religion and rejects others. For me it is an all or nothing proposition. I really am trying to be sincere. I appreciate your comment and your passion on this issue. :)N

Nikki said...

Freadom, I agree with you...why send the proposition to a vote when it can be overturned by a judge, did I not hear a whole lot a belly-aching in 2000 when a certain election was decided by a judge? hmmmm interesting how now judges are our friends. :)N

Sandi said...

Interesting thoughts. I've never thought of polygamy in the same context as gay marriage, but in some ways you're right. And, if all partners are consenting, what the heck? The only polygamy we hear about is with young girls being forced into marriage and that I don't agree with - even if it's a monogamous relationship. As for gay marriage, I frankly don't see why people object. I know many gay couples who have stronger and more respectful relationships than some married people so why shouldn't they have the same rights and respect.

Khaki Elephant said...

Hey, Nikki, you are right that blogs are blazing with this topic. I wrote and post as well, though I'm a Republican who happens to support gay marriage.

In thinking about your blog it is important to note that much of the controversy really revolves around the legal complexities of "marriage." You can't control whether or not people fall in love, regardless of religious beliefs, but you can control the legal ramifications of a state sanctioned marriage. To me that's where polygamy is different. Without a Will, how could the state decide which spouse can make decisions concerning health, family or estate issues? Do you start rating spouses? Marriage is legal identification of a person's most significant other.

Marci said...

I like the line of thought here! I would be interested in the how much more "interesting" you can get! I get really tired of the argument that some gay couples are more loving and commited than some straight couples, that really opens up a can of worms! I got your back that our religion is more than something on Sunday it is our way of life.

Nikki said...

Sandi, It is interesting to think about and I am actually against both but I do think people should be consistent...thanks for being so brave and commenting on such a hot topic!


Marci, thanks girlfriend! It is hard for me to argue the dynamics of gay marriage without throwing religion out there, but its how it goes...thanks for the comment! :)N


Khaki, In polygamist marriages there is a ranking as a matter of fact. The first wife is the head wife and she approves all the other wives. Probate is often not as clear as husband to wife. You can leave your possessions to your dog, your neighbor, your waitress, your mistresses and your wife and her sister. You just need a Probate lawyer. Gay couples can leave everything to whomever they want. The legality is a moot point because if there is a will there is a way. The state sactioning polygamy would have to make provisions for dependants and according to my tax expert husband, claiming independants is all that is needed. He also stated that claiming a domestic partner as a dependant on your taxes is already allowed. I do believe that a person should be able to claim and insure who they want on their own insurance policies as long as they are paying for benefit, they should be able to claim a domestic partner. :)N

Karen said...

My problem with the ruling was the fact that the people of CA voted on this and didn't want it. The court decided against the popular will of the voters. Activism from the bench isn't good from either side of the aisle.

Mike said...

Karen, when a law is passed that violates the civil rights of a minority group, that law should be overturned. The determination that the California Supreme Court made was not that gay marriage should be legalized, but that the California constitution does not allow for a law that assigns marriage rights based on sexual preference. What this means is that if enough people in Cali want to ban same sex marriage, they will have to find a way to do so that does not violate the civil rights of same sex couples.

Nikki said...

Mike, do you mean like a certain election in 2000, those kind of votes? Are you saying it is ok for a court to rule in like manner? just sayin. :)N

Nikki said...

I know I am not Karen just had a bug up butt..hehe :)N

Karen said...

Nikki,
You're too much! I got your back, too.
I still think it's not right to go over the will of the people. I do think it's a states' rights issue. And, I'm not against gay marriage. I'm still open on the subject. I think I've had too many gay friends in my life, and I thought civil unions would do it but I don't want loved ones to be denied visiting in Intensive Care Units or other end of life legal issues.

Mike said...

Karen, this is a states' rights issue. The California supreme court made a ruling on a California law regarding its validity under the California constitution. They did the same thing when they overturned the California law banning inter-racial marriage. Our country's legal system is based on the principle of protecting the individual, not on blindly following mob rule.

And Nikki, I was going to respond to the whole Supreme Court 2000 thing, but it always gets me riled up, so I passed. Just for the record, though, I had no problem with the Florida supreme court making its rulings on that. :)

DB said...

Just because the people vote for something or strongly supports something, doesn't make it a good law. Slavery, interracial marriage, Separate but Equal laws, and countless other blunders of laws based to restrict freedom that the people supported.

Nikki said...

DB, I would agree that just because you think it doesn't make it so...same goes for your side of the argument. I think your category comparisan is a huge stretch. and that is my opinion. :)N