View Poll Results: Would You Support Polygamy

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  • Yes

    41 43.62%
  • No

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    3 3.19%
  • I couldn't care less either way.

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Thread: Polygamy: Why not?

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    Polygamy: Why not?

    As anyone familiar with the gay marriage threads knows, polygamy is often brought up to test the logical consistency of a given argument and identify what, if anything, would justify keeping polygamy illegal in a world where consenting adults can enter in any contract they wish.

    I personally have never possessed nor read a strong argument against polygamy, and I become confused when some pro-gm folks would not also support polygamy, as such individuals can never articulate their reasons.

    This thread does not need to involve gay marriage at all. I actually believe we could have a better discussion if gay marriage were included as little as passable.

    I invite anyone with strong objections or support of polygamy to make their arguments known.

    • Do you think legalized polygamy in society would affect you in any way? If so, in what way and to what degree?
    • Do you think polygamy could help lower the divorce, juvenile crime or runaway rates; or improve academic performance?
    • If you can argue the polygamy brings increased economic security, how would polygamy affect the abortion rate?


    Those are just a few questions to get your thoughts moving, please feel free to make any argument you wish.
    Last edited by Jerry; 12-20-08 at 07:21 PM.

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Poll in process....

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry View Post
    As anyone familiar with the gay marriage threads knows, polygamy is often brought up to test the logical consistency of a given argument and identify what, if anything, would justify keeping polygamy illegal in a world where consenting adults can enter in any contract they wish.

    I personally have never possessed nor read a strong argument against polygamy, and I become confused when pro-gm folks would not also support polygamy as such individuals can never articulate their reasons.

    This thread does not need to involve gay marriage at all. I actually believe we could have a better discussion if gay marriage were included as little as passable.

    I invite anyone with strong objections or support of polygamy to make their arguments known.

    • Do you think legalized polygamy in society would affect you in any way? If so, in what way and to what degree?
    • Do you think polygamy could help lower the divorce, juvenile crime or runaway rates; or improve academic performance?
    • If you can argue the polygamy brings increased economic security, how would polygamy affect the abortion rate?


    Those are just a few questions to get your thoughts moving, please feel free to make any argument you wish.
    First, please forgive me for the one sided discussion of me assuming it is always the man taking additional women. Although nothing rules out women taking multiple partners, it is more prevalent for men to take multiple spouses in history, so that's what I'll focus on.

    From an evolutionary standpoint, polygamy is part of our historical past. This is evidenced by the fact that men are, generally speaking, larger than the females. This general indication is in large part due to competition between males in the species (this goes for any species where the males tend to father off sping of many women). The larger males are generally more successful in fending off other males and reproducing. In species with a one to one relationship the sexes are equal in size. The opposite holds true when females take more partners than males (see mantis').

    It is my contention that polygamy has only begun to fade away in societies due to men fearing their inability to reproduce if other more attractive males were allowed to have multiple women. This fear has lead to laws and "moral codes" preventing men from doing so. It also probably stems from the fact that when men have multiple partners, they are less inclined to effectively care for their spouses and children, which can be viewed as immoral (although there is nothing that I see as immoral).

    So to answer your questions, there are two answers:
    1. A general sense of fairness that most people have that everyone should be entitled to be with someone else. If men were permitted to be with multiple women, there would be an equal number of men without a spouce. It is a fight against "the survival of the fittest".
    2. A more moral objection. Men who take multiple spouses inherently have less time and resources to care for each additional spouse and child. Whether this actually leads to a poorer quality of life for them is another matter.
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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    I really have no problems with polygamy. But I think the problem would be jealousy. No woman wants to be second or third choice. If a husband gives more attention to one than the rest. And the kids. Wife ones kids are healthy smart attractive. Wife two's kids are less healthy skinny under achievers.

    Wife two wants a divorce and she has 3 kids. Wife one wants to stay with hubby and also has 3 kids. How is property divided care etc. Just seems like it would create some serious problems.

    Like I say I am not against it but one wife has proven to be more than enough for me and I have a good one!

    Moe

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by MachuPicchu View Post
    A general sense of fairness that most people have that everyone should be entitled to be with someone else. If men were permitted to be with multiple women, there would be an equal number of men without a spouce. It is a fight against "the survival of the fittest".
    Have you seen anything to suggest there'd be more people with multiple partners if polygamous marriage was legalised? There's nothing to stop this happening now. Marriage is irrelevant to this situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by MachuPicchu View Post
    [*]A more moral objection. Men who take multiple spouses inherently have less time and resources to care for each additional spouse and child. Whether this actually leads to a poorer quality of life for them is another matter.
    Again, not relevant. People with multiple partners can do this whether they're married or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by moe View Post
    Wife two wants a divorce and she has 3 kids. Wife one wants to stay with hubby and also has 3 kids. How is property divided care etc. Just seems like it would create some serious problems.
    There would be more factors to consider and it would probably be more complicated but that is no reason for it to be illegal.

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry View Post
    As anyone familiar with the gay marriage threads knows, polygamy is often brought up to test the logical consistency of a given argument and identify what, if anything, would justify keeping polygamy illegal in a world where consenting adults can enter in any contract they wish.

    I personally have never possessed nor read a strong argument against polygamy, and I become confused when some pro-gm folks would not also support polygamy, as such individuals can never articulate their reasons.

    This thread does not need to involve gay marriage at all. I actually believe we could have a better discussion if gay marriage were included as little as passable.

    I invite anyone with strong objections or support of polygamy to make their arguments known.

    • Do you think legalized polygamy in society would affect you in any way? If so, in what way and to what degree?
    • Do you think polygamy could help lower the divorce, juvenile crime or runaway rates; or improve academic performance?
    • If you can argue the polygamy brings increased economic security, how would polygamy affect the abortion rate?


    Those are just a few questions to get your thoughts moving, please feel free to make any argument you wish.
    I don't have any particular MORAL objection to polygamy. However, I can think of a couple PRACTICAL reasons why it shouldn't be legalized in the eyes of the law.

    1. Our legal code would need a massive overhaul to comply with this. What happens if someone decides to marry every single person in the world who wants to live in America? What happens if a hundred spouses show up in a hospital emergency room demanding to see their spouse? What happens to the estate if the spouses don't know about each other and their spouse dies? What if I have ten wives, each of whom has ten husbands, each of whom has ten wives? What would it mean to "jointly file" tax returns? All in all, it's simply not worth the expense to our legal system to try to correct all of these things.

    2. Since men are naturally sluttier than women, polygamy would almost always entail one man with several wives, rather than the other way around. This means that there are lots of men who would not be able to marry at all, which would most likely increase the crime rate and cause social unrest.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 12-20-08 at 08:26 PM.
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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    I'm not opposed to consenting adults engaging in polygamous relationships, nor do I oppose giving their relationships some amount of legal protection.

    However, I do not believe that civil marriage in the US is well equipped to do this.

    Marriage laws in the US have always been written with 2 people in mind, and there would be numerous technical problems with trying to add a third person. tax laws regarding marriage would need to be revised, for instance. Or consider a situation where one person was unable to make medical decisions for them self, and the other two people disagreed on what action should be taken. Who gets the last word?

    For technical reasons alone, trying to adopt marriage as is, to polygamy would make a legal mess.

    It would also make family law, especially child custody disputes, more complicated than it already is.

    if a child biologically belongs to two of the parents, but not the 3rd (or forth...), do the other parents have legal rights? are their rights are large as the rights of the biological parents? if there are two women involved, can the non-birth mother sue to take custody away from the birth mother?

    when there are disagreements, does it simply come down to a vote? or must the minority opinion always be heard, and does it always carry weight?

    in order to work, polygamy wouldn't just require expanding the definition of marriage, it would require restructuring it entirely.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry
    Do you think legalized polygamy in society would affect you in any way? If so, in what way and to what degree?
    this question isn't easy to answer as polygamy can mean many different things to many people. if polygamy as practiced by the fundamentalist LDS church were to become legal and protected, a lot more people would be hurt, and it would be much harder to help them. when people around you are being hurt, it always effects you.

    if it was a situation of 3 or 4 adults without children, I have a hard time seeing how I would be effected by this. but expecting polygamous relationships to be childless is unrealistic. if marriage as is were to be expanded to include polygamy, I think it would create a legal mess that could effect everyone. it could be different if it were restructured, but that leaves open questions of how it would be done.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry
    Do you think polygamy could help lower the divorce, juvenile crime or runaway rates; or improve academic performance?
    I don't think theres any data anyway, but I think arguments could be made that polygamy could heighten or lower them. largely depending on how polygamy is defined or carried out legally.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry
    If you can argue the polygamy brings increased economic security, how would polygamy affect the abortion rate?
    I don't make that argument.

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    * Do you think legalized polygamy in society would affect you in any way? If so, in what way and to what degree?

    Legalized polygamy would not affect me in any harmful way.


    *Do you think polygamy could help lower the divorce, juvenile crime or runaway rates; or improve academic performance?

    No. I think many parental problems take place on an individual basis, not because an individual participates in the institution. Likewise, I think benefits beyond those that are part of the legal contract can be attributed to each individual partipating in the contract.


    *If you can argue the polygamy brings increased economic security, how would polygamy affect the abortion rate?

    I don't think polygamy would have much of an effect on the abortion rate.

    As a side note, polygamy was legal in this country up until the mid 1800's, when it was outlawed by the Morrill Act. I really see no reason it should be outlawed unless there is definitive proof that multiple marriage partners is harmful to individuals or society.
    Last edited by Singularity; 12-20-08 at 09:00 PM.

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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by JoeDavies View Post
    Have you seen anything to suggest there'd be more people with multiple partners if polygamous marriage was legalised? There's nothing to stop this happening now. Marriage is irrelevant to this situation.
    Yes. I actually have a good friend who dates multiple women at the same time. He doesn't hide it, and although the women aren't overly pleased about it, none leave him. He is quite good to them and knows how to occupy a womans mind and keep her interested, unlike most men.



    Quote Originally Posted by JoeDavies View Post
    Again, not relevant. People with multiple partners can do this whether they're married or not.

    There would be more factors to consider and it would probably be more complicated but that is no reason for it to be illegal.
    I'm not saying that I feel it should be this way, I'm just detailing why I feel that it has become a socially ostracized thing to do.
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    Re: Polygamy: Why not?

    Quote Originally Posted by MachuPicchu View Post
    Yes. I actually have a good friend who dates multiple women at the same time. He doesn't hide it, and although the women aren't overly pleased about it, none leave him. He is quite good to them and knows how to occupy a womans mind and keep her interested, unlike most men.
    Sorry, I must be missing something here. How does that prove there'd be more people with multiple partners if polygamous marriage was legalised? People who want multiple partners are probably doing it already.
    Last edited by JoeDavies; 12-20-08 at 09:19 PM.

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