so now that gays are getting married all over, let's talk about real marriage equality.
i don't have a horse in this race, but i remember a lot of arguments from timid people saying oh noes! if gays get married, next people will be having plural marriages! and we can't have that!!
and i want to know: why the heck not?
well, if you find it icky, don't enter into one.
but the bible defines marriage as between one man and one woman!
actually, the bible never defines marriage, but it does DESCRIBE some marriages, and the ones it describes often involve one man and several wives, or one man, a couple of wives and some concubines, or one man and hundreds of wives and concubines. the bible even has rules about the inheritance given to sons of multiple wives, so that argument's done with.
but the children! what about the chillllldrennnnnn? we can't allow them to force girls to marry old men!
who said anything about letting old perverts marry children? consenting adults, bucko. i keep hearing that stupid argument come from even sensible people, as if people who might want to enter into a plural marriage are suddenly pedophiles.
but! but! it's abusive to the wives! one man will think he is king of them and that's not ok!
well, for starters, you're assuming that it would all be one man taking a bunch of wives and ruling over them as king. except for numbers that wouldn't be all that different than a lot of the one-man-one-woman marriages you see. but here's the important bit: if you as a woman WANT to enter into such a marriage, that is not my business. you are a consenting adult and you have the right to marry whom you please.
but the chllllldrennnnnnn! who is thinking of the chilllllldrennnnnnn! children can't grow up in a home like THAT.
um... why not? you're not seriously telling me that a group of five adults couldn't raise children in a caring environment as well as, say, one adult with an absentee parent not paying child support?
but the sex! we can't expose the children to weird sex!
do you have sex in front of your children? or do you just pack their lunches and take them to soccer practice and try to get them to do their chores and homework?
but. but. INSURANCE! FEDERAL BENEFITS!
ok, you got me there. but here's the thing. we can't deny perfectly competent adults the right to form households of their choice simply because of our accounting practices. sure, one man supporting ten wives and a truckload of children would be a drain on social security but the reality of it is that one adult is very unlikely to be supporting all those people. it's more likely that you'd be getting little groups of threes or fours and probably more than one adult in that group has a job to support the family.
i bet we could come up with some new rules to cover how many adult members of your household would be covered by your benefits and your insurance.
let's just imagine a household with one man and four wives. if all the wives stay home to take care of the children, that one man is making a TRUCKLOAD of money that is subject to payroll taxes.
if you have two men and three women living communally and three of them have jobs and two of them stay home and care for the home and children, the system is coming out ahead.
and let's face it. people who are polyamorous exist. they already have wives and husbands and children. they already work out the intricacies of how to live as they choose. they just can't have legal protections that, say, gay couples have. additionally, there are actual criminal penalties for marrying more than one person. the government is very strict about that. if you freakazoids are going to try to define your own family, you are going straight to jail.
right NOW our only examples of plural marriages are fundamentalist mormons and odd fringe culty people who INSIST on going against the stupid law. if we just make it legal for consenting adults to enter into domestic partnership contracts as they wish, you'd get regular joes and janes figuring out what kind of family configuration works best for them and then doing that.
and the cultish weirdos would have less reason to be all armed and suspicious that the gubmint is trying to break up their families. added benefit.
wouldn't that be nice? people of all kinds having the ability as consenting adults to decide how to best configure their own households for their own domestic tranquility?
call me a radical, but i'm for it.