Sunday, June 24, 2012

Inflammatory Things

I'm trying to avoid posting stuff like this on facebook, because I really hate status arguments (so pointless). I've been dog-sitting for my parents, and unlike Mitch and I, they have like a million channels. So of course I've been watching way more TV than is necessary for life (Note: none TV is necessary for life). In particular I've been enjoying Sister Wives.

I'm pretty sure most people are familiar with the premise: it's a reality show about a polygamous family. The husband is definitely a huge dweeb (c'mon, Kody with a K?), but it at least appears that the family is relatively functional. The kids are clean, well-fed, and enrolled in school, and the wives are realistically cheerful. They just seem like a really huge family; not much different than the Duggars I suppose.

Anyway, amidst all this push to legalize same-sex marriage (of which I am a proponent), I feel like maybe we should also legalize polygamy.

Much of the argument in support of same-sex marriage regards access to benefits and destigmatization of families with same-sex parents, not to mention the fact that two consenting adults should be allowed to marry each other just because. Seriously, just because. It has no bearing on anyone else's marriage, and the kids in these relationships are no better or worse for it, so just leave it.

Along that same vein, why shouldn't three or four (or more) consenting adults be allowed to marry? Isn't this type of prohibition just another example of banning a lifestyle that we might not understand?

Personally, I don't understand polyamory either. Even though I'm pretty sure I would be the alpha wife, I really have no desire to share Mitch's manly resources with other women. Conversely, I also have no desire to manage a houseful of husbands who don't know how to scrub a bathtub. Regardless of my own insecurities/laziness, polygamous families are also stigmatized and denied equal access to certain benefits. I'm sure there are some deeper economic, tax, and insurance issues that perhaps could exploited by polygamous families, but that's beyond the scope of what I feel like talking about here (it's late, and I'm starting to ramble). And I believe bringing these families out of the woodwork might help regulate some of the darker aspects of polygamy, namely child brides and rape. Maybe it's the tiny (very tiny) libertarian in me, but I just don't think the issue of who marries whom should be left up to the government.

Then again, I've also been watching a lot of Iron Chef, which also makes me feel like they should make it legal to marry a wheel of Gruyere.

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