Menu Close

Mainstreaming Polygamy3 min read

Listen to this article

Now, I am not one to buy into slippery slope arguments (hence my dislike for both ends of the abortion debate, the gay debate, and other debates – I may be conservative, but I disagree with the far right in many things), but I think there is merit in the accusation that the pro-gay logic includes other types of "loving adult relationships", including polygamy and polyamory.  This week, we see that, as predicted, the media is making an effort to understand and humanize polygamy and polyamory. 

Now, I have a little more tolerance for polygamy than homosexuality, since the latter is clearly condemned in scripture and appears "against nature", while the latter is not directly condemned nor considered "unnatural."  And I found the interviews interesting and though-provoking.  I think Christians are going to have to have a bigger discussion about polygamy in the coming days.

1. HBO began it’s new series, Big Love this week, a fictional series about about a polygamous family.

  • The description of this series is "Polygamist Bill Henrickson tries to satisfy the emotional, romantic and financial needs of his three wives — Barb, Nicki and Margene — and seven children in suburban Salt Lake City. "

2. NPR ran an interview with a polygamist family, Real-Life Polygamists React to HBO’s ‘Big Love’ to get their reaction to the series

  • "I hope that our culture or way of life is presented as normal.  That we are normal people in committed relationships, with good families, just on a bigger scale."
  • "I think it would be really lovely to see a respect for our belief system so that it’s not just a laughing stock situation….It would be nice to see those stereotypes erased by this piece."

They were not happy with the series, since it focused too much on the sexual part of polygamy, which feeds right into the stereotypes.  But they did like the focus on prayer and devotion to God.

  • "If I were [a viewer], I would wonder ‘What in the world?  We have people like that in America today?’  My concept of a polygamist would be pretty bad – especially since we want polygamy decriminalized….viewers are not going to see this as people who add value to their lives, but as a sideshow."

This is gonna be interesting.