As Predicted, Polygamists Run the Same-Sex Playbook

08/19/2010 22:13

From News Real Blog

One of the foreseen consequences of the legal recognition of “gay marriage” has been follow-up arguments for recognition of other counter-cultural relationships. In convincing society that the purpose of marriage is self-fulfillment, rather than the stability of a relationship tasked by nature with the bearing of healthy children, “gay marriage” advocates have opened the door for any sexual relationship to be equated with marriage. The only defining characteristic is “people in love.”

Hence, in the wake of Judge Vaughn Walker’s decision to overturn California’s Proposition 8 and allow same-sex couples to “marry,” it comes as no surprise that the next counter-culturists to emerge from the closet are polygamists. As usual, Hollywood carries the water.

“Sister Wives,” a seven-episode series on the TLC network, is the first reality show that follows a polygamous family…

“When we met this family, we thought, ‘Wow, what a great story to tell,’” [president of North Carolina-based Figure 8 Films and co-executive producer of the show Bill] Hayes said.

“Their children were so well behaved and polite and healthy and happy,” he added. “Pardon the cliché, but the proof was in the pudding. I thought, ‘What a bunch of great young people, and there was nothing strange about them.’ They have an unusual lifestyle, but for them, it was their lifestyle.”

Moral equivalence begins anew. Prepare to have all the same arguments, now repackaged to champion a different social more. After all, polygamists are people too.

The suburban Brown family consists of the patriarch, who works in advertising; his first wife Meri, 39, and their 14-year-old daughter; second wife Janelle, 40, and their six children, ages 5 to 15; and third wife Christine, 37, and their five children, ages 6 to 14, with one on the way. The show follows Kody Brown’s pursuit of a fourth wife, Robyn, who has three children, ages 5 to 10, from a previous marriage.

Sounds like a riot. But hey, isn’t polygamy illegal in every state of the union?

While the family had been living in “quasi-secret” over its lifestyle for many years, Hayes said the Browns decided to do the series to show that polygamy does not have to be a world shrouded in dark secrets…

Good for them. It’s unreasonable to expect people to break the law in secret. We don’t want to burden hapless families with such obligation. Besides, openly breaking the law without consequence is one of the best ways to change it. Just ask “undocumented workers.”

In an interview with The Salt Lake Tribune last year, Kody Brown said they were careful with whom they revealed their lifestyle.

“In the past, polygamists have had to be secret due to the threat of indictment or expulsion from work. Our civil rights got thrown out a long time ago,” he said. “Even though society has evolved to the point of not knocking on my door with pitch forks and a lynch mob, that doesn’t mean that they couldn’t get away with it.”

Boy, that sounds familiar. Spontaneously discovered civil rights. Cries of persecution. Equating approval with tolerance. Where have we heard this before?

All sarcasm aside, the goal here is precisely that sought by “gay marriage” advocates, the personal affirmation that comes with social acceptance. This family hopes to affect the culture with their Mirror Universe Brady Bunch. They hope, by revealing themselves as “real people,” the public (or at least a few activist judges) will support another redefinition of marriage.

Indeed, if Judge Walker’s dubious constitutional argument is upheld, courts will be hard pressed to distinguish between polygamists and homosexuals. After all, in the leftist paradigm, “equal protection” does not mean applying the law regardless of difference. It means interpreting the law to accommodate all difference.

The point here is not to rage on polygamy. The practice doesn’t strike me as a naturally criminal act. Neither does homosexuality. I am sympathetic to the argument we ought to live and let live. However, such tolerance does not compel approval.

States’ endorsement of marriage as the union between one man and one woman does not obligate endorsement of any other type of relationship. The Browns’ sense that the culture has presented them with an opening to push for acceptance of their lifestyle demonstrates what traditional marriage advocates have said all along. Confusing equality with sameness undermines definition. When words mean nothing, neither does the law, and our social order is lost.


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