Now on the horizon:
- The AP reports that “A Montana man said Wednesday that he was inspired by last week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing gay marriage to apply for a marriage license so that he can legally wed his second wife.”
- A commentary in Politico by Fredrik deBoer aruges “It’s Time to Legalize Polygamy, with the subhead: “Why group marriage is the next horizon of social liberalism.”
- Jonathan Rauch responds (also in Politico) No, Polygamy Isn’t the Next Gay Marriage.
- Similarly, Cathy Young writes at Time Polygamy Is Not Next.
- In response, a commentary in by Charles C.W. Cooke at National Review asks Is Polygamy on the Right Side of History?, contending that Rauch and Young are naïve if they think that the polygamous marriage movement isn’t going to ride the same emotional appeal as same-sex marriage.
That’s a lot of focus in the week following the Supreme Court’s landmark gay marriage ruling!
While there are far fewer polygamy advocates than gay people who wanted to marry, it’s clear that the polyamorous are now making the same kinds of arguments that advocates of same-sex marriage equality advanced. I have no idea how this will play out, but the debate is clearly gaining prominence.
More. The Washington Post chimes in with Is polygamy next in the marriage debate?:
Chief Justice John G. Roberts’s dissenting opinion raised the question of whether the court’s rationale could be used to legalize plural marriage down the road.
“Although the majority randomly inserts the adjective ‘two’ in various places, it offers no reason at all why the two-person element of the core definition of marriage may be preserved while the man-woman element may not,” Roberts wrote. “Indeed, from the standpoint of history and tradition, a leap from opposite-sex marriage to same-sex marriage is much greater than one from a two-person union to plural unions, which have deep roots in some cultures around the world.”
Some are now using Roberts’s arguments to revisit the idea of legalized polygamy.
Well, Roberts seems to have opened the door.