Whatever comes to mind: Polygamy perceived in a new way

Whatever Comes To MindBy George Flynn | Opinions Editor

With marriage equality becoming one of the most heated topics in our nation and world, it is no surprise that other forms of marriage are coming into question.

The progressive movement toward marriage equality, which has caused 17 states to legalize gay marriage, has created a slope that has allowed others to have an open mind about other different walks of life. The subject in question is polygamy, the act of having more than one spouse, which is societally viewed as an extreme taboo. However, is polygamy as atrocious as modern society thinks it is?

According to a CNN article by Mark Goldfeder entitled “It’s time to reconsider polygamy,” Utah has recently deemed part of the anti-polygamy laws as unconstitutional, but still the state has kept the ban on only possessing one marriage license at a time. This can be viewed as excellent news, however, in some places where polygamy is not exactly regulated, people, specifically women and children, are being subjected to abuse.

Another CNN article by Amanda Townsend and Agnes Pawlowski entitled “Girl, 14, fled abuse, ‘mind control’ of polygamy,” discusses a girl’s escape from the polygamous sect which was led by Warren Jeffs, who is presently spending a life sentence in prison for having sex with underage girls.

Sara Hammond escaped as a teenager. According to Townsend and Pawlowski, “She left behind 19 mothers, 74 siblings, and a father she says could never remember her name, even though he repeatedly molested her.”

Hammond also states within the article the worst beliefs of the church which she escaped. “‘Probably the worst part of the whole theology,’ she said, ‘is the treatment of women and teaching women that they are not equal to men.’” It is also stated that all woman who practiced in Warren Jeff’s church named the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints could only enter the highest degree of heaven if they had a husband who had two other wives.

With many other horror stories like Hammond’s, it is no wonder that the concept and act of polygamy has left nothing but a bad taste in our mouths. However, who is to say that polygamy is always a negative experience for women and children?

The television series, Sister Wives, which focuses on former Utah-resident, Kody Brown, his four wives and 17 children, changed the face of polygamy. The TLC series successfully humanized the act of polygamy, whether the Brown family or TLC meant to or not. The family and channel gave the world a chance to see that polygamy is not always monstrous. They have recently been in the news as they have been connected with the Utah polygamy lawsuit which was a victory for them.

CNN’s Goldfeder offers an interesting argument for polygamy and if it would be possible to legalize it. “Polygamy might not be inherently evil, which is why we need purposeful debates. But unlike traditional marriage, it has never been effectively regulated and so people, especially women and children, have suffered,” he said.

According to Goldfeder, advocates say that abuse is not in the true nature of the practice. Advocates of polygamy do not support underage relationships and abuse that is commonly correlated with polygamy.

Goldfeder’s argument is that if the nation recognized and regulated polygamy through issuing marriage licenses, it would make it much easier to catch the people who abuse the practice. Along with this, legal polygamy would allow independent civil authorities to express concerns about or disallow inappropriate polygamist pairings from taking place.

Whether or not polygamy is something that our government and society can handle right now, it is important to recognize that polygamy and the act of polygamy is something that is not completely evil. Polygamy can and is a walk of life that is acceptable in other countries. Why not here in the states?

George Flynn is a senior English major and can be reached at flynng@duq.edu.

2 Responses to "Whatever comes to mind: Polygamy perceived in a new way"

  1. ANONYMOUS  October 17, 2014 at 6:00 am

    CHRISTIANS – ALTHOUGH WELL MEANING – R MOSTLY BRAIN WASHED BY ZIONISTS 2THINK MONOGAMY IS THE ONLY CORRECT VERSION OF MARRIAGE: [EVIL] ZIONIST MOTIVE WAS TO ALLOW PSYCHOPATHS & AND ALSO OTHER SUCH MENTALLY DISTURBED PEOPLE TO BREED MAKING IT EASIER FOR ZIONIST TO CONTROL SOCIETIES & LATER COUNTRIES & LATER THE ENTIRE PLANET EARTY & EVENTUALLY UNIVERSE BY FIRST LET MONOGAMIST POLITICAL POWER SO THAT PSYCHOPATHS TO BE BORN TO PSYCHOPATH MEN TO BREED BY NOT ALLOWING WOMENtheCHOICE TO GET MARRIED TO MAN THAT WAS ALREADY MARRIED. MOST RELIGIOUS FANATICS ARE GULLIBLE IDIOTS NOT SEEING THE OBVIOUS EVIL CONTROLLING THEM THAT BE ZIONISTS, INCLUDING ISLAM IS CONTROLLED BY ZIONISTS, EXCEPT MUSLIMS INCLUDING ALL OTHER RELIGIOUS FANATICS, INCLUDING CHRISTIANS, R GULLIBLE IDIOTS, DO NOT SEE OBVIOUS EVIL WHICH IS ZIONISTS CREATED MONOGAMY LAWS TO BREED EVIL, BY FIRST PRETENDING TO BE WELL MEANING BUT WITH EVIL MOTIVES, BUT THE SLOW THINKING HUMANS DID NOT SEE THEN NOR NOW FOR MOST THEIR EVIL MOTIVES IS HOW ALL GOVERNMENTS WERE CREATED BY DECEPTION & FRAUD & COERCION, BUT ALL OF THIS EVIL COULD ONLY BE DONE IF MONOGAMY AND MONOGAMISTS HAD POLITICAL POWER WITH ZIONISTS AS RULERS, IS NOT TO SAY POLYGAMY IS SUPERIOR, SINCE SOME MEN DON’T EVEN DESERVE TO HAVE ONE WIFE, WHICH EVEN THAT IS TOO MUCH TO ALLOW TO SOME MEN, WHO OUGHT TO BE REMOVED FROM THE HUMAN GENE POOL, WHICH IS WHAT THE ROBOTS WERE DO OR WILL DO AFTER DECADE[S]IN FUTURE. EVIL CAN BE REDUCED BY FIRST NOT ALLOWING ANY FORM OF GOVERNMENT, SINCE ITS TOO EASILY ABUSED & TAKEN OVER & MIS-USED BY PSYCHOPATHS: JUST LOOK @ THE TSA @ ALL AIRPORTS TO CONFIRM WHAT ME SAY IS TRUE: ONLY THE IDIOTS & MORONS WOULD THINK TSA R NOT CRIMINALS, BUT R CRIMINALS & ALSO INSANE COMMITTING CRIME UNDER COVER OF LAWS, BUT PUBLIC IS COWARDLY OR STUPID, EITHER WAY, THAT IS HOW & WHY, ZIONISTS IN ANCIENT TIMES WERE ABLE TO REPLACE POLYGAMY WITH MONOGAMY, FOR PURPOSE OF TO REPLACE COMMON SENSE WITH STUPIDITY AND CONFUSION, WHICH WOULD THEN ALLOW ZIONISTS 2 TAKE OVER SOCIETIES & COUNTRIES & LATER ENTIRE EARTH, WHICH IF THEIR POLITICAL FRAUD OR FAKE LAWS R NOT STOPPED, THEIR ORGANIZED CRIME SYSTEM WILL SPREAD OUTSIDE OF THIS PLANET EARTH, IS WHY FASTEST & EASIEST APPROACH TO STOP OR REDUCE OR DIMINISH ZIONIST EVIL TO ALLOW POLYGAMY, WOULD ALSO REDUCE # OF PSYCHOPATHS, SINCE LESS WOMEN WOULD MATE WITH PSYCHOPATHS, RESULTING IN LESS MENTALLY DEFECTIVE MALES, IF WOMEN R GIVEN CHOICE TO MARRY ANY MAN IF HE WANTS HER AS HIS WIFE, BUT @ THE SAME TIME IT’S NOT GOOD IDEA FOR WOMAN TO HAVE MORE THAN ONE HUSBAND. AND THOSE THAT ARGUE 4 IT R TROUBLE MAKERS WHO PRETEND TO BE PRO POLYGAMY BUT R REALLY MONOGAMISTS, SORT OF LIKE IN PAST CENTURIES AGO, MAFIA AGENTS DISGUISED THEMSELVES AS YOUR SAVIORS, WHOM YOU REFER TO AS FOUNDING FATHERS, WERE REALLY ALL AGENTS OF ORGANIZED CRIME & WORKING TO IMPRISON YUR CHILDREN & REDUCE THEIR GOD GIVEN RIGHTS & TO STEAL FROM THEM. BUT MOST THEN & MOST NOW DON’T SEE NOR CARE FOR THE OBVIOUS IS WHY ZIONISTS CONTROL U. AND, WHEN ME USE THE WORD ZIONIST[S], NOT REFERRING TO JEWS, WHO R ANOTHER BUNCH OF BRAIN-WASHED EUROPEANS WHO THINK THEY R NOT EUROPEANS: AMAZING HOW GULLIBLE MOST R.

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  2. Norman Arminger  January 20, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    Quick answer: because polygamy is and always has been based on the objectification, abuse, and commodification of women.

    Long answer: The acceptance of polygamy is the next logical step for a society that is increasingly forgetting what marriage is. By “what marriage is” I mean how society has always viewed marriage and defined it; and it does, in fact, need defining, because since the dawn of civilization it has been viewed not as primarily a personal choice—certainly not a “right”—but as a contract or covenant between people. Forgive me what must seem like an impossibly medieval view right now, but the reason that marriage exists is to ensure the welfare of natural families. It provides the safety of commitment and support to the spouses and furnishes children with the necessary stability of growing up with both a male and a female parent. (If anyone has “rights” in this situation, by the way, it would be children: the right to be raised by their natural mother and father. Anything else is a tragedy, regardless of individual cases where such an ideal may not have worked out so bad.)

    We are now, however, at the point where marriage has effectively lost any signification at all. A brief history. First, marriage lost its indissoluble character because of no-fault divorce; it became something that could be dissolved at the whim of the spouses. Next, the proliferation of birth control severed it from its most fundamental purpose, which is the creation and upbringing of children. Today we are at the point where marriage need not have any relationship to children or even serve as a natural recognition of the complementarity of the sexes: thus so-called “gay marriage.”

    With its foundation completely eroded, polygamy was the next logical step. With polygamy, marriage is now no longer even about the complement of two persons. All it means is “state-recognized relationship.” Wouldn’t it really be in everyone’s better interest at this point just to abolish the whole concept? You can chop all the legs off a stool and keep calling it a stool, I suppose, but it’s not really honest once it’s stopped being able to fulfill its function.

    Historically, polygamy was common in many cultures. So were practices like genocide and torture. These things are still popular with cultures that practice polygamy, because polygamy is a primitive institution. In cultures where it existed alongside marriage for any amount of time, it was never seen as equal; your stereotypical sultan or pharaoh would have harem of “concubines,” but they were never at the level of his actual wife. It is essentially a form of slavery for women. The idea that it might be discussed in even neutral tones shows a disturbing lack of background. (The fact that your one “positive” example is a cable TV show should say enough about how ridiculous it is to try to use examples to sweeten the pot on this idea.)

    There is a reason that Western civilization abandoned polygamy. It is a vile practice that makes slaves out of spouses. Besides, some things are not a question of whether or not they are “negative experiences.” Having a “negative experience” is not the same as something being wrong, and having a “positive experience” does not make it right. Some things are just wrong.

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