View Poll Results: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

Voters
24. You may not vote on this poll
  • Yes, the majority of men would benefit

    0 0%
  • Yes, the majority of women would benefit

    0 0%
  • Yes, the majority of men and women would benefit

    4 16.67%
  • Yes, I don't care who would or would not benefit, as long as it doesn't affect me

    2 8.33%
  • Yes, I want to be able to engage in polyandry or polygamy without being stigmatized

    2 8.33%
  • Yes, this wouldn't have any appreciable effect on society

    3 12.50%
  • No, this would not be good for society

    7 29.17%
  • No, marriage is supposed to be between one man and one woman

    4 16.67%
  • No, marriage is supposed to be between two people only

    2 8.33%
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Thread: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

  1. #1
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    Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Contrary to what most people may believe, evolutionarily speaking, the institution of marriage between one man and one woman actually benefits men more than women. Most men believe that polygamy would be better for men because men are "horn dogs" and all they want is tons of women for themselves. However, if polygamy were the socially appropriate mating style, men would loose on the deal. Here is why:

    First, here are a few facts:

    1.) Women are much more likely to be a biological parent than are men. How can this be you may ask? Its simple, look at the next facts:
    2.) Men and woman both often have multiple sexual partners (this fact may be obvious to most people).
    3.) Woman can be absolutely sure that the child(ren) they care for are their own. Men do not have that certainty. If a woman has unprotected sex with more than one man (especially during ovulation) she will have a child that is most certainly her own. However, a man can have unprotected sex with as many women as he wants and is not guaranteed to father a child (biologically at least). Therefore, monogamy protects men from providing resources to children that are not his own. A woman does not have to worry about this since if the child comes out of her womb it is most certainly her own.
    4.) In world where highly disproportionate amounts of resources are dispersed between individuals, i.e. only a few people hold all the wealth, if polygamy and or polyandry were socially appropriate and it where the norm, it is likely that harems would emerge. This would be bad for most men on all fronts (evolutionarily at least). In the case of polygamy, there would only be a few happy men and there would be many unhappy men because most of the men with the most money would have several wives, leaving no wives for the poorer men. This would be a recipe for disaster, since studies have shown that men are married or partnered have fewer problems and are generally happier. Indeed, a chemical is released in the male that has calming effects; it also decreases testosterone in the male. The case of polyandry is obvious since only one man of the many, could father (biologically) a child. Essentially, not only would polygamy and or polyandry be bad for most males, it would likely be bad for society since there would likely be more aggressive crimes etc.
    It should be noted that most women would reply to this argument by saying that women would never go for it... however, in a world where one individual's income could provide for 100's of wives, it is not inconceivable. Indeed, if the social stigma against polygamy and or polyandry were removed, there would not be much from preventing this from happening on a large scale. Sure, the wives would be jealous of the other wives, but evolutionarily speaking, the increase in resources would overrule that jealousy.

  2. #2
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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Polyandry is really more practical than polygamy. I didn't realize it was socially stigmatized though. Obviously, it's not a legal form of "marriage" but that's a different debate altogether.

    I assume that when you use the term polyandry you would define it as fidelitous polyamory. Not sure if fidelitous is a word but you know what I'm asking. Are we referring to a woman with more than one "husband" who is faithful to the 2 or more husbands that have made this arrangement?

    Considering the practicality of these alternative arrangements, I don't think they are socially stigmatized. Legally, yes, but socially?

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    I'm firmly against the "traditional" practice of polygamy -where one man has multiple wives. In general, this has led to women not having many rights; to old men marrying young girls; to young men being driven out of the group because they compete with the old men for wives; etc. And, in cases where the men can't afford the wives, the extra spouses end up on welfare and we pay for them and their kids. Read up on Mormon fundamentalists to see more of this. Also, kids raised in this culture may say they're ok with it - young girls saying they want to marry the old men - but really, what have they seen differently?

    Now the more modern definition of Polyamory - where adults of various genders come together in a group and live together - I'm ok with that in general as long as they ARE adults (my personal opinion is that they should be at least 25 years old) and they are free to leave the group if it doesn't work for them. I think it is a very difficult arrangement and most of us (including myself) couldn't handle it.

    I don't see a reason to legalize this arrangement - there are so few of them; and if they are adult enough to live together like that, they should be adult enough to get contracts, power of attorney, wills, etc to cover them. To change our laws which are predicted on two people to include an unknown number just seems like not worth the effort given the small number of people affected.

    Changing the rules for marriage equality is pretty simple - from "husband and wife" to "spouse and spouse" ... nothing else has to change in terms of inheritance, survivor benefits, child custody, etc.

    I have no objections to people trying to legalize polyamory; but it won't be as major an issue for me as marriage equality is (note: I am straight, to me marriage equality is today's key civil rights issue).

    (yes, I'm new, hope it's ok to post here)

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    All your premises aside, a person's sexual relationships are their own business. Obviously, the young-girl-abusing nature of some forms of polygamy certainly warrants concern, but that is a consent and coercion issue. Adults can basically do whatever they want with each other. I see no reason for any social stigma.
    Liberté. Égalité. Fraternité.

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    We have a nearly equal number of males and females. What possible reason would we want all the hot women "bought" up by rich SOB's?

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paschendale View Post
    All your premises aside, a person's sexual relationships are their own business. Obviously, the young-girl-abusing nature of some forms of polygamy certainly warrants concern, but that is a consent and coercion issue. Adults can basically do whatever they want with each other. I see no reason for any social stigma.
    "Hi, I'm Randy. I have sixteen wives and one husband. My girlfriend thinks I'm not very enlightened having just one male spouse, but what does she know? She's just the mistress".

    Ah, the carnal charms of unfettered Socialism....
    Last edited by Dooble; 07-17-13 at 09:36 PM.

  7. #7
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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Quote Originally Posted by MusicAdventurer View Post
    Contrary to what most people may believe, evolutionarily speaking, the institution of marriage between one man and one woman actually benefits men more than women. Most men believe that polygamy would be better for men because men are "horn dogs" and all they want is tons of women for themselves. However, if polygamy were the socially appropriate mating style, men would loose on the deal. Here is why:

    First, here are a few facts:

    1.) Women are much more likely to be a biological parent than are men. How can this be you may ask? Its simple, look at the next facts:
    2.) Men and woman both often have multiple sexual partners (this fact may be obvious to most people).
    3.) Woman can be absolutely sure that the child(ren) they care for are their own. Men do not have that certainty. If a woman has unprotected sex with more than one man (especially during ovulation) she will have a child that is most certainly her own. However, a man can have unprotected sex with as many women as he wants and is not guaranteed to father a child (biologically at least). Therefore, monogamy protects men from providing resources to children that are not his own. A woman does not have to worry about this since if the child comes out of her womb it is most certainly her own.
    4.) In world where highly disproportionate amounts of resources are dispersed between individuals, i.e. only a few people hold all the wealth, if polygamy and or polyandry were socially appropriate and it where the norm, it is likely that harems would emerge. This would be bad for most men on all fronts (evolutionarily at least). In the case of polygamy, there would only be a few happy men and there would be many unhappy men because most of the men with the most money would have several wives, leaving no wives for the poorer men. This would be a recipe for disaster, since studies have shown that men are married or partnered have fewer problems and are generally happier. Indeed, a chemical is released in the male that has calming effects; it also decreases testosterone in the male. The case of polyandry is obvious since only one man of the many, could father (biologically) a child. Essentially, not only would polygamy and or polyandry be bad for most males, it would likely be bad for society since there would likely be more aggressive crimes etc.
    It should be noted that most women would reply to this argument by saying that women would never go for it... however, in a world where one individual's income could provide for 100's of wives, it is not inconceivable. Indeed, if the social stigma against polygamy and or polyandry were removed, there would not be much from preventing this from happening on a large scale. Sure, the wives would be jealous of the other wives, but evolutionarily speaking, the increase in resources would overrule that jealousy.
    In the societies out there which practice polyandry or polygamy, there is a specific reason and benefit. These reasons and benefits are different and based on things like social-order, hierarchy, familial responsibilities, inheritance, etc. It is not a social-norm issue which relies on public acceptance. If it does, that's usually in cases where the royal family or leader of the tribe (etc) is permitted to have more than one wife (or vise versa) to aid in the duties therein (beyond parenting children) - yet the individuals who rank beneath him/her are not permitted to do so.

    In the US we cater to the individual needs and desires - we don't rely on social norms and other considerations to form most of our beliefs and living concerns. Thus, when people are told "you cannot do ___" in the areas where society does insert itself - they become personally opinion. The self, in these situations, is ranked too high.

    "I should be able to do whatever I want" is the thought process for such people.

    In truth, there's simply no reason or benefit beyond immediate personal desires for such relationships. There are no royal customs, there are no land-rights, there is no fear that the family cannot continuously divide their land for each male born, etc. There are only a few people who just want to for no reason other than their own personal desires.

    In the US - we uphold individuality but "because I want to" doesn't cut it.
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    It has happened before, but there is nothing to compare it to now.
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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Marriage primarily benefits women because the woman is guaranteed financial support for her child if she gets pregnant. The husband can be held legally responsible for the child even if it isn't actually his.

    I don't think we need to promote or discourage any particular type of relationship, different people have different needs and desires.

    I have no problem with legalized polygamous marriages as long as employers or the government don't give a greater subsidy to polygamous marriages than they do to monogamous ones. I would also raise the minimum age for marriage to 18 for all marriages to prevent exploitation of naive kids.

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    Quote Originally Posted by specklebang View Post
    Polyandry is really more practical than polygamy.
    Do explain...

    Quote Originally Posted by specklebang View Post
    I didn't realize it was socially stigmatized though. Obviously, it's not a legal form of "marriage" but that's a different debate altogether.
    Oh there is!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by specklebang View Post
    I assume that when you use the term polyandry you would define it as fidelitous polyamory. Not sure if fidelitous is a word but you know what I'm asking. Are we referring to a woman with more than one "husband" who is faithful to the 2 or more husbands that have made this arrangement?
    polyandry defined: A pattern of mating in which a female animal has more than one male mate

    source: https://www.google.com/#q=polyandry&...w=1366&bih=552

    Quote Originally Posted by specklebang View Post
    Considering the practicality of these alternative arrangements, I don't think they are socially stigmatized. Legally, yes, but socially?
    Interesting opinion, but studies have shown that these alternative arrangements are a counterculture and stigmatized. In what way do you feel they are not stigmatized?

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    Re: Should we take steps to remove the social stigma on polyandry and polygamy?

    I doubt this would have a significant impact on society. Frankly I question the mental/emotional health of sets of folks who would willingly engage in polygamous arrangements. Who's being abused and controlled in this arrangement? Who's the abuser/controller? Are these really normal, healthy, functional people, on average?

    I think these people exist on the margins, and not just because it's stigmatized, but because it doesn't really work any better than infidelity or open relationships.

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