Thursday, August 30, 2012

Another Ally For the Polygamous Freedom to Marry

I asked if Brazil will lead the way to full marriage equality. Responding to the same story, asked at, "Why shouldn't three people get married?"

Four pairs of feet in a bed
Photograph: Stone/Getty Images

And yet as we shoehorn ourselves into two-by-two formation, we're not that good at keeping our promises: as Helen Croydon has pointed out, breaking the boundaries of monogamy is far from unusual. Plenty of marriages have three people in them. They're just not legal ones.
I know a beautiful triad, or thruple. They want to get married under the law, and they have a marriage better than anything else I've seen. Why are they denied?
The government can dictate that two people should be in a marriage, but it can't legislate what will make them feel happy or stable or emotionally complete together. And if we accept that, as we do every time we allow anyone the freedom to make a decision about who they'll marry, and furthermore allow them the freedom to call each other by execrable pet names in public, then does it not begin to seem strange, just a bit, that we do allow the government to dictate how many people are allowed to pledge to be together forever?
It is not just strange, it is cruel. Some people couldn't be monogamous if their life depended on it. If three or more people have formed a spousal relationship or multiple spousal relationships in a construct that works for them, why deny them their right to marry?
Is it possible that if we allowed more people to marry simultaneously that more marriages might be successful?


Here's a very important point...
Legalisation wouldn't send stampedes of people to the registry office in five-aside squads; for many of us, monogamy does feel the most comfortable option, whether it's because our brains aren't wired to love more than one person or because the prospect of making multiple people happy is too complex. But three's not a crowd for everyone. And as long as everyone is entering a marriage equally, as long as everyone is really going to make an effort to be open and honest to everyone else, it's probably not the government's job to tell them how many of them there should be.

Thank you! Thank you!!! It is great that more and more people are seeing that both the same-gender freedom to marry and the polygamous freedom to marry are good things. These rights should not be denied. This is why we will have full marriage equality.
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