Polygamy is one of those issues that conservatives are going to get bit by if they are not careful. Far too much focus is put on orthodox Musolims having more than one wife, when the focus should be on how they control and abuse those wives.
In forgetting to focus on the human rights aspects of purdah (keeping women secluded) which can pop up in any culture’s history, these reactionary conservatives will soon be left behind by this culture’s history.
With the universal adoption of gay marriage in the West virtually inevitable it behooves us to re-examine our priorities, and our goals, in this issue. We already have rampant polygamy in this nation, and not just amongst Mormon “radicals”; the whole idea of the nuclear family is giving way to an extended family of choice, instead of an extended family by birth, which is the pattern that the unstable nuclear family replaced over the course of the 2oth century; a pattern that was not new but, had existed for millennia up until that time.
The bottom line on marriage, no matter where you find it in human cultures, is that it is about producing an environment that is conducive to raising children and conserves the energy/assets of the participants… that is the only definition that fits what a living, dynamic humanity has called “Marriage” over the course of a long and diverse history!
By this pattern’s perspective the orthodox Muslim marriage is an unhealthy one, and so is the traditional “purist” Mormon one; because they both impose control where there should only be consent, they demand submission where there should only be free will.
But, there are Mormon and Muslim polygamys that are not unhealthy at all. We stay with our mates because we are committed to them, not because of their plumbing, or number, or to coincide with a particular religion’s kinky code of what is love and what is perversion. As Jesus said, judge them by their fruits. If we are opposed to the oppressions of Islamists rather than their “strangeness”, then let us focus on the oppressivness, not just on the strangeness. Let’s focus on the seclusion, the forbidding education, or work, or even being allowed to be seen by the outside world to be free of bruises or unbearable stresses. Let’s remember what matters, and what is just our OWN desire to impose control for control’s sake, conformity for our confort’s sake.
If gay men and lesbian women are allowed to marry as a norm in this country,the next step, and last step all you reactionaries, will be for one or more men to contract marriage with one or more women. Commitment should be all that matters, and the one man one woman crowd has not done too wonderfully well in showing off that virtue as being in their exclusive possession. Sometimes they have trouble showing that they poses it at all.
Jesus said judge them by their fruit, I will not be harsher. That said, by his fruit this man will probably hang high, so to speak