It was clear during and following the public discussion of gay ‘marriage’ that there was no in-principle argument among the majority of its proponents that could present a stumbling block for polyamorous ‘marriage’. If people could not recognize that marriage was a union of the opposite sexes, given its ends, how could they further recognize it was also an exclusive union?
So it’s not surprising that the Economist, no less, is gently suggesting, in much the same way it and other outlets did re gay ‘marriage’, that polyamourous arrangements face discrimination, are misunderstood, and so on. There is, of course, an acknowledgement that marriage is in many respects institutionally inapt for polyamorous arrangements,
Triads and quads are what Laura Boyle, a relationship coach, calls “poster-child polyamory”: comprehensible to monogamous people who can grasp the concept of a closed unit living together. In fact networks are often more complicated, represented by v- and n-shaped configurations that don’t imply mutual attraction among several people. Ms Boyle lives separately from her three partners; she co-parents with her ex and his wife. She calls polyamorous people “folks with a scheduling kink” and thinks they are more willing to accept some fluidity in their relationships, for which marriage is a poor framework,
but the recognition is nevertheless sort in order to obtain the tax, workplace, health care, immigration benefits and the like that marriage affords. What is often missed in these discussions is that marriage includes these benefits because the institution itself was understood as a public good and thus worth promoting through these benefits, not because of its benefits to individuals. It’s not clear at all that these relationships (polyamorous, gay, and so on) that fall outside of the nature and form of marriage confer the same or similar public goods typically associated with it.
But this will likely be ignored, and the focus will be on whatever ‘discrimination’ is faced by those that want to engage in polyamorous arrangements. This will be the case both at the juridical and political level. The only likely impediment is the absence at present of a victim class. Gay ‘marriage’ was aided by the category of ‘sexual identity’, there ‘homosexual’; whereas, polyamorous arrangements can involve hetero/ homo/ bi- sexual individuals. Of course, given the propensity to multiply the number of sexual identities by the variety of sexual inclinations, there is nothing to stop the creation of the sexual identity ‘polysexual’; in fact, it is already with us.
The only way to stop and reverse this slide is to ask what marriage is for, and any failure to do so allows for the continued dissolution of marriage as a meaningful institution, which may be the point.
53 thoughts on “Sliding towards polyamorous ‘marriage’”
I grew up with a bunch of kids whose parents were Sri Rajneeshis and involved in polyamory and constant sex parties. Pretty much all of the kids went off the rails and so did their parents when the party stopped. That said, the left have already killed marriage. Traditional religions should come up with a new name for conventional unions and carry on. Frankly I don’t care if the gubbermint thinks I’m married or not. It’s now meaningless.
Correct, Dover. Marriage between a man and a woman based on the birth and raising of children is a foundational institution of any society. When it devolves to a network of arrangements then social stability is at risk. If individuals prefer to make these arrangements then they should be prepared to live with the disruptive nature of them, bear the expense involved personally, and not seek societal assistance in furthering their choices. To provide such assistance would, as you note, further diminish the original institution to the net disadvantage of children, who need stability rather than confusion in their daily lives.
Gay “marriage” was always a no for me for the simple reason that the word “marriage” applies to a union between a man and a woman.
Spool forward x number of years and now the “experts”…
Can’t define a woman
Cannot see any problem with “transwomen” competing against women (even though they can’t define a woman)
Cannot see any problem with housing “transwomen” prisoners in a female prison -(at least 3 documented rapes by “transwomen” have occurred)
The list is endless.
The F’wits calling for these changes should all be neutered, hung and quartered, and then the burial plot published so I can p!$$ on their graves at my leisure.
Muslims will be happy
Ah yes, the “slippery slope”. With every argument, be it abortion, SSM, and euthanasia, progressives always accuse us on the right, when we right rightly warn about the “slippery slope”, that we’re engaging in hyperbole and scare mongering. But you see, we’re not, because we know what the left is up to, we know how the left operate. We can accurately predict the obvious and on every single issue we’re proven right because it is always the cause that progressives are never ever happy with the status quo, no, they must push, push, and push. Why do they do this? Because progressivism has no moral or ethical boundaries.
Abortion = supposed to be “safe, legal and rare” = in most Australian states abortion* is allowed just prior to birth, and we’ll soon see the murder of infants post-birth.
SSM = as soon as the age old notion that marriage is only between a man and woman was trashed, we now see the push to legalise “polyamory”. Unsurprising, all part of the slippery slope.
And of course, since the legalisation of SSM, we now have the rise of the sinister cult of “transgenderism and its tenets, which involve the mutilation of children by cutting of their breasts and their penises. What next? Well it’s already happening, the push to normalise pedophilia by quaintly referring to it as “minor attracted people”.
Euthanasia = look no further than Belgian and the Netherlands where children are now being euthanised. And Canada, a disgrace, people are choosing euthanasia because they have depression.
What next? Gulags? Umm, it’s not so absurd. The left now control everything, from the MSM to the police. In the UK and even here in Victoria, the left are already using their goons in the police to intimidate and arrest people for wrong-think. Forget about arresting a person for knife crime, far better (and easier) to arrest someone for posting a tweet on transgenderism that doesn’t conform to the progressive paradigm.
* and worth remembering that legal abortion right up to birth was ushered in, here in NSW and in SA, by supposed Liberal governments.
“…SSM = as soon as the age old notion that marriage is only between a man and woman was trashed,…”
It started before then – first it was “we just want homosexuality to be legal – why should we be punished, we’re not hurting anyone!”, then changed to “We just want equality”, then changed to “You should celebrate us!”, then changed to “We should be able to use the same words”.
The first 2 I am OK with – life your life as you see fit, if you’re not hurting anyone else, I don’t care.
The rest is BAD – I do NOT need or want to “celebrate” your “unusualness” – and I use that word for a reason, since saying you are “not normal” is apparently a problem. So OK, you are “unusual” instead.
In that, it is “usual” (ie, most common, and most likely any random person will be) heterosexual (and probably monogamous as well).
And words have meanings – if you change what words mean, you inhibit communications between people. That results in fights that can’t be resolved because the words you use mean different things to each side. That’s why the left does it – so GovCo can come in and “fix” what doesn’t need fixing. English is very flexible – if you need a new word, create one!
The BBC, which is pretty woke these days, had to report between its teeth recently on the results of the recent UK census. There was, for the first time, a question on sexual orientation. And guess what? The proportion of the population that self-identified as LGBTQI+ was 1.5 percent. Yes, not ten percent plus as they like to claim, but ONE point five. The proportion into ‘polyamory’ would likely be even less. Talk about the tail wagging the dog.
The need for regular families comes down to biology. We have by far the longest need for nurturing of any animal before we can function independently: apart from the physical vulnerability of children (we don’t have furry hides or thick scales and need to use adult intelligence instead), think of the complexity of acquiring language, let alone a secure sense of identity. Hence the need for stable and committed families.
One of Richard Dawkins’ most annoying traits, by the way, is his refusal to let the logic of biology get in the way of his religiophobic prejudices. I gather he is not on speaking terms with his own daughter.
Allow me to Tap The Sign-
It isn’t hard- they want a godless, parentless, wealthless mass of scatamanic proles to rule over.
I think we’re already there.
Get the state out of recognising the institution of marriage and we may have a solution.
Nope. If you think marriage is a public good, that it actually delivers tangible benefits to society, then you need the state to recognize marriage. To use an analogy, the problems involved with sex/ gender right now don’t flow from state involvement in sex/ gender but from an erroneous definition and understanding of sex and gender being foisted on the public by misanthropes. Therefore, the answer is not to get the state out of sex and gender, but to defeat the erroneous definition and view of sex and gender. The same holds true with marriage. Moreover, the idea that you can get the state out of either is impossible. Both public and private law make reference to sex/ gender and marriage; consequently there has to be a definition of sex/ gender or marriage that applies as a matter of law, and so on. The only way out is through.
What state benefits (tax, welfare) are available to those married, that are not also available to those in de facto relationships. hetero or homo?
If the state does not provide specific recognition to those in hetero marriages, raising children, what point is there in state recognition? Get your union blessed by whichever you prefer, and announce to the state that you are a de facto couple. Ignore the register of marriages.
Good point, don’t provide any recognition outside of the marriage relationship. It was always thoroughly stupid and short-sighted doing so anyway re de facto marriage. The whole point of providing these benefits is to channel people into marriage because of the public benefits that accrue therein. The rationale for those benefits were never private, they were public.
by whichever religion you prefer …
The religious angle to this is neither here nor there.
What are these public benefits?
Why can’t a de facto relationship provide them?
I’ll go out on a limb here…
Demographics will see that we (at least in Australia) return to traditional marriage.
See Lizzie above for starters. Typically not as stable as de jure marriage. Also, you want the couple to publicly make their declaration, to make vows to each other, and so on.
It is and it’s pretty clear from my argument.
It was always thoroughly stupid and short-sighted doing so anyway re de facto marriage. The whole point of providing these benefits is to channel people into marriage because of the public benefits that accrue therein. The rationale for those benefits were never private, they were public.
The religious angle to this is neither here nor there.
Those benefits will never be taken back, there is no government that would even try. That leaves only the alternative as to separate the religious aspect from the state aspect.
“I’ll go out on a limb here…
Demographics will see that we (at least in Australia) return to traditional marriage.”
Not a limb. I think you’re right and not just in Oz…but also in the UK and France.
as others have suggested, de-facto recognition already covers (I think) everything at the legal level.
The public good is limited to stable families — I’m not sure marriage (of any form) improves a child’s lot these days.
How do you know?
Like stats or is it assumption?
Mine was private like most.
Re 1, I’d like to try. Re 2, there just isn’t these two aspects in respect of what we are talking about.
Sure, but the studies indicate de facto relationships lack the stability of marriage. So if stable families are in the public interest then the state ought to recognize marriage alone.
You made no declaration? Never registered? Never told family or friends? You don’t tick the married box on official or other documents?
I referring to the ceremony, Dover. Infront family and friends. Registering was just a formaty. It ment nothing to owe comment.
So it was public, bespoke.
Marriage is coming back. The effect of feminism has come the full 360.
In the media articles are being written that girls should only have sex with boys they want to have children with.
Meaning in a Church to me is meaningful, from the friends , family, to the community you live in and out through the cosmos – the whole universe – it means something.
Outside the Regular church going families growing up in the 70s, the notion of family seemed to mean not much.
Ask where the brother ect was – I don’t know, or the one I remember was I could go to a boozy night out due to a feast day – you Catholics – you and your families.
It’s coming back. Talk to females to a pointed part of a conversation about ssm and quite a number will blurt out it’s disgusting or that homosexual behaviour in nature is treated as freaks – talk to horsie girls
External expectations can couse trouble for couples as it is without the the state butting in. Remember the last time a state did that? Hint: it was in Europe in twentieth century .
Ok, I believe that, but correlation is not causation.
If there were no state recognition of marriage, I think those who entered marriage solely under the umbrella of religion would be more stable.
Homosexual ‘marriage’ was the first step in the left’s campaign to abolish both marriage and the family as institutions.
which is exactly why families, and the church, need to take back marriage from the state.
You conducted it in front of family and friends. You registered it. It satisfied the forms of marriage which is why your guests understood what the event entailed and so on. It was thus public.
You’re getting married. You didn’t invent the institution. The expectations arise because it is an institution. It has nothing to do with the state aspect.
This phrase is overused. You can provide plausible explanations for the correlation. People can fall into de facto relationships, whereas people in de jure relationships enter into them intentionally, make vows to each other, and so on.
I’m concerned about promoting the public goods that arise from marriage; this requires state recognition. This isn’t about carving out a space where I and those like-minded can remain unmolested while everyone else travels further down the slippery slope.
As I said in the previous analogy, can the state get out of recognising sex/ gender? No it can’t. The problem is not state recognition. The problem is the understanding of sex and gender that is emerging. The same is true with respect to marriage.
First step? Liberals had already made several steps before that starting in the 19th century.
precisely. Those that marry are generally more serious about it, whereas defacto is often just a default setting for couples in a relationship.
My point is that the *state institution of marriage* (signing up at the registry) didn’t create a more stable relationship, it was the public statement of commitment (ceremony in front of family and peers) which did it.
Dissolving a legal marriage is easy these days – or should I say dissolving a de-facto relationship is just as hard.
Understood, but there isn’t multiple institutions of marriage but one, recognized both by state and church alike.
Precisely, which is why it isn’t just a matter of opposing the removal of one or other attribute of marriage, whether it’s the union of the opposite sexes (gay ‘marriage’, or exclusive union (polyamory) but marriage understood completely, so defending the permanent union attribute (divorce), and more importantly, a recognition of marriage’s ends, the care, custody, and education of children and mutual love and support between the spouses. And so on. Taking this seriously means de facto marriage, certainly as it understood nowadays is absurd, and divorce/ separation should be far far harder. I’m sure, for instance, that divorce rates are high because in many respects people give far less sober consideration to entering into marriage, for instance, because dissolving the marriage is far easier, and the social costs of divorce are far lower.
Rubbish. You’re looking for an excuse to put conditions acting though the state. It was a private ceremony invitation only owe commitment was between us not you or the state.
You didn’t invent marriage, bespoke. The conditions are entirely it’s own. I didn’t invent them. The fact the ceremony was private is beside the point. You told those invited you were getting married. If it was something else you should have used another word.
Well what are getting at Dover?
Is it because we invited guest that makes it public?
The conditions are between me and my wife.
What I’m getting at is plain. What makes it public beyond reciting the vows before witnesses is that you entered into an institution you didn’t invent, one already governed by custom and law. The ‘conditions’ are a part of the institution of marriage, whether you or any other individual agree with them or not, arising out of the ends of marriage.
If this weren’t the case and what you said was true, you could have no in-principle objection to polyamorous ‘marriage’, whatever the arrangements involved as they would be ‘private’.
Sure, beyond the basic conditions that make the relationship ‘marriage’, entirely up to both of you to decide who takes the garbage out, cooks dinner, etc.
And weather we choose to have kids.
Look if women want to lay back and do it for King and country or go into an an arranged marriage as has been suggested go for it. Only as long as it’s for themselves not! My granddaughter or little sister.
Just because that is the primary end of marriage, institutionally, doesn’t mean that all individual couples are compelled as a matter of law to have them. All that the form of marriage requires therein is that the relationship involves the opposite sexes.
Social security and multiple relationships
Social security law recognises that a person can be in a de facto relationship with more than one person at a time. These are termed ‘multiple relationships’. An assessment as to whether a person is a member of a couple is conducted in respect of each relationship.
Members of a multiple relationship would receive the partnered rate of payment which is lower than the single rate. For example, the basic single Newstart Allowance rate is currently $528.70 per fortnight while the member of a couple rate is $477.40 per fortnight.
Members of a multiple relationship are also considered partnered for the purposes of the income and assets tests. Each person’s income and assets are assessed against the income and assets of each of their partners and the lowest rate payable is applied.
It’s pretty clear that this is a ham-fisted attempt to cover immigrants in polygamous marriages under the banner of ‘multiple’ couples. The fact that welfare recognizes these ‘multiple relationships’ is a sluice that wets the slide that will lead to polyamorous ‘marriage’.
That quote is awful. Who in their right mind would use the words polyamorous and Child in the same sentence?
Given marriage is a committed relationship between a man and a woman at the exclusion of all others the term polyamorous marriage is an oxymoron.
It reminds me of a quote I swlaw recently that said “ethically non-monagamous” is a term invented by people who sleep around but have a guilt conscience
Indeed, A reader. Same is true of ‘open marriage’. If it’s ‘open’ it is not marriage. In fact, I think ‘ethical non-monogamous’ is the extension of that to de facto type relationships. The ethical simply arising from the consent of all involved.
Now if you expect the state to dictate what is marriage then you’ll be legally bound to accept its interpretation. Take that power away you are free to accept or not., simple.
I don’t expect the state to ‘dictate’ what marriage is; I want it to recognize and acknowledge what marriage is because it is an important public institution. There is just no option wherein the state either through policy or law is uninterested in marriage and therefore unconcerned with how it is defined and so on.
You have higher expectations of those running the state than I do, dover. You want them to ask themselves what marriage is for. I don’t believe they are capable of contemplating societal functioning. They ask themselves only what will get them votes from the other unthinking.