Originally Posted by MoxCo. Executive
I disagree with the term "marriage equality" which is a question begging attempt by homosexuals to phrase their position as being the objectively correct one. The current definition of marriage as a man and a woman is arbitrary, but not in itself unequal. "Marriage equality" could just as well describe polygamous marriages.
That said I'm fully supportive of same-sex marriage and don't really feel strongly about the aforemade point, but wanted to get this ball rolling.
Originally Posted by Nate
What's wrong with polyamorous marriages? As long as everyone's honest and open with each other and there aren't wierd power dynamics in terms of religion or money, who's harmed?
It gets a bad rap because those who tend to participate are often from reclusive cults riddled with abuse and both forced and underage participation, though that's hardly an argument against it because that's the kind of thing law enforcement should be dealing with in any case.
The problems with poly marriage are entirely legal ones. Recall that the only thing that changed with marriage equality was who is allowed to participate with one another, every other aspect remains identical. There's the rub: there is no legal precedent for fair marriages containing more than one participant, and the current marriage laws have absolutely no ability to deal with that whatsoever. Everything from inheritance to child support, power of attorney, divorce and custody, all of it in current laws expects only two participants. Changing that doesn't demand rewrites or additions, it requires rebuilding the whole thing from the ground-up. Example: with multiple equal spouses, what do you do when one is rendered unable to make their own medical decisions and the other spouses disagree on the course of action? What do you do when someone leaves the marriage and there are children? That they are related to? That they are not related to? If that changes things then the marriage does not have equality of responsibility and is more like multiple two-person marriages all mixed up, with all the problems that would cause.
It's an unprecedented legal nightmare. The real problem is not finding public support, it's finding the legislative will to sort it out. The only solution I can see would be to create a modular marriage licence that is customised to the number of participants and other necessary aspects, allowing it to be constructed to requirement, including the popular two-person package that affords the familiar rights and responsibilities of a two-person marriage. This means dismantling the legal institution of marriage entirely and building something new. Possibility adapting from current laws of business incorporating, which deals with similar issues.
I would support that, I'm just saying that the difficulties and practicalities of putting together a workable system may be prohibitive, at the very least a very long way off. The best case scenario would, ironically, involve in part the overturning of gay marriage laws so soon after their implementation.