Not quite, but finally, we see some social progress on the polygamy front, fellas.
Polygamy, a practice that President James Garfield once said “offends the moral sense,” is now seen by 17% of Americans as “morally acceptable,” up from 14% in 2016 and the highest rate on record dating back to 2003.
Despite growing acceptance of the practice over the last 15 years, polygamy, or having multiple spouses at one time, remains one of the most morally taboo social behaviors in the eyes of Americans.
In 2011, the share of Americans who found polygamy “morally acceptable” rose slightly to 11%, but the increase coincided with a change in how the word “polygamy” was defined in the survey. Prior to 2011, polygamy was defined as being when “a husband has more than one wife at the same time.” Beginning in 2011, this definition became gender-neutral, instead identifying polygamy as when “a married person has more than one spouse at the same time.”
Granted, this increase is slight by any standard, and may simply be the result of the broader leftward shift on moral issues Americans have exhibited in recent years. Or, as conservative columnist Ross Douthat notes in his New York Times blog, “Polygamy is bobbing forward in social liberalism’s wake …” To Douthat and other social conservatives, warming attitudes toward polygamy is a logical consequence of changing social norms — that values underpinning social liberalism offer “no compelling grounds for limiting the number of people who might wish to marry.”
That makes more sense. We can’t take the increase in favorable attitudes toward polygamy in isolation. If we also polled to see the acceptability of, say, incest or sex with a horse, I’m sure there has been a boost in recent years as well. Polygamy is just accepted as another expression of personal choice and sexual autonomy among a long list of perversions.
In reality, polygamous marriages amount to more commitment and a ton more responsibility. More wives means more kids, means more mouths to feed. More wives means more rights to fulfill. Polygamous marriage, in this way, decidedly constrains choice and restricts autonomy. But some men have the means and the will for that and they experience joy from that much more family to enrich their lives and the fulfillment of taking care of more than one woman. In other words, they are not in it for some hedonistic expression of unbridled sexual freedom. But the perverted Western mind has to reduce everything to bodily functions for it to make sense. They can’t conceive of how polygamy can be about anything other than a guy wanting to copulate with as many women as possible.
In short, there is little reason to believe that Americans are more likely to know or be polygamists now than at any other time in the past. But there is one way Americans may feel more familiar with or sympathetic to polygamy: television.
Beginning in the mid-2000s, television shows began to feature polygamist characters — though these depictions were not always favorable. The TLC show “Sister Wives” premiered in 2010, and according to The Washington Post, humanized a family of polygamists. The show was successful and remains on the air. Notably, over the time it has been on the air, Gallup has seen support for polygamy rise by nearly 10 percentage points, although it is impossible to establish any direct causality between the show and changing attitudes.
Americans who identify with a Christian religion are less likely than the overall sample average to find polygamy morally tolerable.
I don’t understand how Christians can be so uni-vocal in their views on polygamy when the Bible contains so many examples of polygamous relationships from prophets like Abraham, Moses, David, and Solomon (peace be upon them all). You don’t see any prophets endorsing same-sex degeneracy. As far as the Bible is concerned (and the Quran, of course), same-sex degeneracy gets you Sodom and Gomorrah. Yet, so many of these churches I drive by in my city are flying rainbow flags and some are even ordaining LGBT priests. I feel sorry for traditional Christians who are 40 years or older, wondering what the heck is going on with their religion.
Well, to those Christians I say, cut your losses and become Muslim.