Monday, April 03, 2006

Predicate of Polygamy

Krauthammer has it cold:

As Newsweek notes, these stirrings for the mainstreaming of polygamy (or, more accurately, polyamory) have their roots in the increasing legitimization of gay marriage. In an essay 10 years ago, I pointed out that it is utterly logical for polygamy rights to follow gay rights. After all, if traditional marriage is defined as the union of (1) two people of (2) opposite gender, and if, as advocates of gay marriage insist, the gender requirement is nothing but prejudice, exclusion and an arbitrary denial of one's autonomous choices in love, then the first requirement — the number restriction (two and only two) — is a similarly arbitrary, discriminatory and indefensible denial of individual choice.

This line of argument makes gay activists furious. I can understand why they do not want to be in the same room as polygamists. But I'm not the one who put them there. Their argument does. Blogger and author Andrew Sullivan, who had the courage to advocate gay marriage at a time when it was considered pretty crazy, has called this the "polygamy diversion," arguing that homosexuality and polygamy are categorically different because polygamy is a mere "activity" while homosexuality is an intrinsic state that "occupies a deeper level of human consciousness."
But this distinction between higher and lower orders of love is precisely what gay rights activists so vigorously protest when the general culture "privileges" (as they say in the English departments) heterosexual unions over homosexual ones.


Once again, we are examining the limits of Positive Law--and it is found wanting.

Another commenter goes on to re-state the Maggie Gallagher thesis:

Legalizing gay marriage would be a life-threatening blow to traditional marriage because it would further dilute the value of traditional marriage in the eyes of the public. If there are additional alternatives to traditional marriage, there will be less emphasis on the importance of traditional marriage.

4 comments:

J. Michael said...

1) biblically based, polygamy is not a moral evil
2) in the USA, polygamy has only been out of use since the 1890s, when the Mormons bowed to politics and threat of force and stopped the practice

Dad29 said...

Uhhhhmmmnnnnhhhh...

The Bible INCLUDES the New Testament. But even if it did not, please explain the LACK of polygamy midst the Jews from, say, 1000BC to date...

Hmmmmm?

J. Michael said...

hmm? so are you insinuating it is a moral evil for falling out of practice, or that it should be illegal (and with your skewed view of the law we have, what is illegal is tied to morals, so why i distinguish is beyond me) for another reason?

another queston i have to ask to save another comment for your email: how does letting more people marry dilute the value of marriage, when the validity and standing of 1 couple's marriage is not affected by if their neighbor marries or not?

Dad29 said...

Someday, Mikie, in school, you may learn how to clearly express yourself.

THEN you should post questions.