Whether polygamous relationships should receive state-recognition is a pertinent question as polygamous relationships are on the rise. Those in support of legal polygamous unions ask that we continue to break with the traditional conception of love. Yet, those who oppose legalization raise the legal infrastructure and policies that the government would have to introduce as a deterrent.
Yes, polygamy in relationships should be decriminalised
The legalisation of group unions should be afforded to all as we move on from traditional conceptions of love. Marriage equality is changing and desiring to exercise one’s right to marry, irrespective of the number of persons involved, should be allowed by the state.
Marriage equality must not exclude group unions
The legalisation of same-sex marriage demonstrates that love overpowers traditions conceptions of legitimate relationship irrespective of gender. There is no reason why polygamous relationships should be excluded on the basis of number when marriage is a fundament right.
No, polygamy in relationships shouldn’t be decriminalised
Plural marriages should not be legalised as they can have severe consequences for the persons involved and also the state. For example, wives are often mistreated in plural unions. What’s more, the state would have to introduce legislation to ensure all aspects of marriage are fair and that plural unions are afforded similar rights to two-person marriages.
Polygamy harms women
It is often the case that women suffer emotional and physical abuse in polygynous relationships. This abuse manifests in multiple ways, primarily in competing with co-wives which takes an emotional toll on women in the relationship and leads to emotional health issues such as depression.