Gay Marriage first – Polygamy/Polyamory next

It has been confirmed today that same-sex marriage won’t be the end – and that claims by some that they are not interested in decriminalising polygamy or polyamory are simply empty promises

GayNZ 27 July 2012
Wellington-based activist group The Queer Avengers is calling for a struggle “beyond marriage”, saying while it supports marriage equality, it’s not the end of the line for GLBT rights. While the group supports Louisa Wall’s Bill to introduce marriage equality, it says the community still faces a number of obstacles. Member Sara Fraser says these include bullying, suicide and homelessness among GLBT youth, inadequate access to quality healthcare for trans people and common intimidation and violence in the streets. She adds that there are many family structures which marriage and adoption law does not cover, for example polyamory and whangai adoption. “This is not the final struggle,” Fraser says. “We’re looking ahead to the struggles beyond marriage.”

Of course, this is nothing unexpected. The previous Labour government were already going down this road

From the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, The New Zealand Jurisdictional Report — Work and Family Balance: A policy perspective, March 2002 –

New Zealand legislation gives a mixed message about what State counts as family. For example… only the male and one wife from a polygamous family are allowed to immigrate to New Zealand. There is an increasing recognition of the need to avoid enshrining in legislation concepts of family which are exclusive.”

 And Labour’s Ruth Dyson – Speech to Victoria University first year Social and Public Policy students 6 May 2008

“We must cater for the diversity, we know exists. By this I mean the range of relationships from single, couples, triples, blended, de facto, and so on. That’s where we’re going with social policy.”



33 comments for “Gay Marriage first – Polygamy/Polyamory next

  1. Dawn Bedingfield
    28 July 2012 at 5:47 am

    When will it end. New Zealand is going on a fast track to destruction of the family unit. What sort of a society are our children being raised in . Remember none of them are here through a gay union but they have to suffer confussion and sin in this country that is bent on imoral actions. I realise and feel sorry for those who chose the gay road or grow up believing they are different, through whatever reason has lead them to this, but those who believe this in natural and normal must surely be deluded.

  2. Rhona
    28 July 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Sorry, but there are problems with the conservative side of the marriage debate. What about Muslim majority states that practise polygamy and prohibit homosexuality altogether, which are the majority of such situations? What about Uganda, currently the scene of fierce battles between conservative evangelicals and homosexuals, yet which continues to recognise polygamous marriage?

    And there’s also the British Columbian Bountiful case to consider. Thankfully, that continued to ban polygamy in Canada, but it also gave polyamory the stamp of approval by dissociating it from the child sexual abuse and domestic violence that is endemic within the schismatic, “Mormon traditionalist” sects that requested it.

  3. Rhona
    28 July 2012 at 5:15 pm

    In the case of polygamy, all homosexual and lesbian activists need to do is dissociate themselves from it. Given that most lesbians are strongly feminist and wholeheartedly oppose child sexual abuse, rape and violence against women, that will be easy enough to achieve.

  4. Rhona
    28 July 2012 at 6:19 pm

    As a matter of interest, I see that the World Congress of Families includes some Muslim members, some apparently from societies that practise polygamy. Is that the case? If so, one suspects that the homosexual and lesbian community will detect that sooner or later…

  5. Christina Ackermann
    28 July 2012 at 6:51 pm

    Well said Dawn! I’m praying that no such law will be passed in New Zealand!!

  6. bob
    28 July 2012 at 11:02 pm

    Rhona – you contradict yourself in successive comments. First you say “it also gave polyamory the stamp of approval by dissociating it from the child sexual abuse and domestic violence”, then you say that gay activists should dissociate themselves from polygamy because “most lesbians are strongly feminist and wholeheartedly oppose child sexual abuse, rape and violence against women”, which implies polygamy leads to such abuse (otherwise, why dissociate themselves from it?).

    And most Kiwis would be opposed to polyamory and polygamy whether it is gay polygamy or hetero. There is disquiet in Britain over immigration policies that have turned a blind eye to polygamous marriage under the counter (often Pakistani Brits going back to Pakistan for 2nd marriages, etc).

    Bob – that’s some good digging for those quotes – I wasn’t aware of the first two. I note that the second quote by Women’s Affairs is factually wrong too, when they say “only the male and one wife from a polygamous family are allowed to immigrate to New Zealand.” Nothing stopping subsequent spouses from immigrating to NZ, but they can’t be brought in as spouses; ie they have to qualify as skilled or business migrants, rather than under family reunification.

  7. bob
    28 July 2012 at 11:10 pm

    Interesting too, to note how shallow the arguments are from many liberal ‘gay marriage’ champions are. Science researcher Danyl McLaughlin at Vic Uni has a popular NZ blog – the Dim Post – and he recently posted about claimed health benefits for gay marriage.

    But none of the gay marriage cheerleaders have even attempted to counter what I noted when I dug into the US research that Danyl cited – that there was little to no evidence of health benefits from gay marriage applicable to NZ, at least in those US studies cited. See comments 10 and 12, and the lack of responses to these. Killed the discussion dead. Hmmmm.

  8. Bob
    28 July 2012 at 11:18 pm

    Nice work Bob. Great research and counter-argument. No wonder the comments dried up 🙂

  9. Lewis Gregory
    28 July 2012 at 11:26 pm

    My favorite thing about this legislation is that it’ll probably pass and you guys won’t be able to do anything about it.
    The western perspective on gay people is rapidly turning into total acceptance. There currently is mass boycott of the Boy Scouts of America for having an anti-gay stance, as is the Chick-fil-A restaurant. This is even more impressive as it’s taking place in a country where a massive subset of citizens are still staunchly anti-gay! The generation of children reaching young adulthood have now spent long enough exposed to a media that is more and more tolerant. A whole generation of teens find peer intolerance on this matter to be recent history.

    What’s going to be fun is watching you intolerant fools be silenced one by one. Soon, your cries against gay marriage will be viewed as archaic as the cries of racists.
    Stay classy!

  10. Will
    29 July 2012 at 1:09 am

    Your right Lewis … its pure perversion, propegated by the media. Sick sick and sick.

  11. Rhona
    29 July 2012 at 3:51 pm

    Bob, polyamory is not polygamy and if you do raise that issue in public debate, you’re liable to have the Bountiful case cited right back at you. I suggest you read it and resile from this strategy. Moreover, I suspect that there will eventually be a rebuttal of some of the “Protect Marriage” claims in the resources section.

    Also, I think you need to be more selective. I looked at most of the papers and many of them seemed to be critical of solo parenthood and heterosexual cohabitation or childcare, without mentioning homosexuality. As a pro-lifer, I have major difficulties with demonising solo mums, given that increased abortions will result.

    Please also note that it’s no good citing Robert Spitzer or David Blankenhorn, who now *support* homosexual and lesbian marriage, and Hans-Christian Rabbe was sacked from the UK Advisory Committee on Drug Abuse for his involvement in the “Gay Marriage and Homosexuality” paper- by David Cameron’s Conservative-led government.

  12. Lewis Gregory
    29 July 2012 at 6:27 pm

    Oh Will, you’re funny. Mainstream media reflects the zeitgeist of its local culture. It changes all the time to reflect the current thoughts and beliefs of the people.
    Answer me- why do you believe it’s sick? No more or less sick than what married couples are able to get up to in the privacy of their own home?

  13. Kay
    30 July 2012 at 5:19 am

    My marriage to my husband isn’t threatended by marriage equality. We would welcome our friends who are lesbian or gay or bisexual or transgender or intersex having the same human and civil rights that we do. Our child’s future marriage choices wouldn’t be threatened by marriage being available to all nonrelated adult couples. The Minister at my church says that “love thy neighbour” is not limited by gender or sexual orientation. She would be happy to perform marriage ceremonies for all loving couples under equal marriage laws. I don’t see why anyone should be scared of the move to equality in marriage laws.

  14. Randal
    1 August 2012 at 3:01 am

    Exactly how does legitimizing gay relationships break down the family unit? How will it change one man’s decision to ask a woman to marry him? How will it change their decision to have children?
    The only confusion children suffer is facing your fear(?), judgmental attitude towards perfectly healthy, law abiding, contributing members of society. Whether I was born this way or chose to be gay, you have no right to limit my rights when I am not hurting anyone. I pay taxes and give back/support my community, why shouldn’t have the same legal rights as my neighbour?
    Dawn, do you know any ‘out’ gay people?

  15. Bob
    1 August 2012 at 12:52 pm


  16. Bob
    1 August 2012 at 12:54 pm

    Same sex couples already have the same legal recognition. We’re simply saying that marriage does not need to redefined

    We’ve given women equal rights. We didn’t need to redefine ‘man’ to do that

  17. Rhona
    1 August 2012 at 4:23 pm

    I asked a friend in Rainbow Labour for clarification on this (we get on quite well as she has a grandson with spina bifida herself). “Polyamory” is apparently more influenced by feminism and is more ‘egalitarian’ than polygamy, which does seem to have a high incidence of domestic violence and child sexual abuse. So, the two are different in philosophy and emphasis. Given that polyamory has no institutional backing or ‘rights’ movement of its own, it is less of a threat to traditional male/female marriage than polygamy.

    Interestingly, my lesbian friend rejects euthanasia and is adamantly opposed to any legalisation of polygamy, as, I gather, is most of her community.

  18. Rhona
    1 August 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Kay, I am not scared, either. What I am concerned about is indiscriminate open slather free fire on solo mothers, particularly. Some of the “Protect Marriage” articles are quite abusive and antagonistic toward solo parents and solo mothers. What about those that refuse to have abortions and choose life for their unborn children?

  19. Hamish Price
    1 August 2012 at 8:21 pm

    Hi Bob. Can you please point out a single enactment where a “man” has been defined.

  20. Bob
    1 August 2012 at 8:34 pm


  21. John
    19 August 2012 at 10:00 pm

    Nice strawman argument there Bob. I like how you cite an independent gay rights activist group and attempt to play it off as the hivemind of the queer agenda.
    We don’t sign off all Christian arguments as the ramblings of the Webstboro Baptist Church now, do we?

  22. Bob
    20 August 2012 at 1:23 am

    The problem is that the call to recognize polygamy is an increasingly worldwide trend e.g Canada, US, Australia to name a few

    Westboro baptist is a one-off

    If you’re consistent on anti-discrimination and equality, you should be all for polygamy and adult incestual relationships

    If you’re consistent

  23. Rhona
    20 August 2012 at 3:18 pm

    Bob, you fail to realise that the polygamy argument has already been refuted by their side, or soon will be. The Canadian “Bountiful” case was decided last year, and as such, it is a more current manifestation of contemporary Canadian legal thinking than Law Commission Reports from a decade ago.

    As for adult incest, I’ve been told that there was a very recent European Court of Human Rights decision on this very issue, Stuebing versus Germany, which held that there was no “constitutional right” to privacy in the context of ‘consensual adult’ incest.

    In this case, the woman involved apparently had a dependent personality disorder and learning disabilities, so there are questions about consent. And unfortunately, she had two children with severe intellectual and physical disabilities, now in state care.

    Which in a way is good news. Most of the lesbians and homosexuals I know find incest utterly repugnant. It’s good to know that civilisation and moral propriety haven’t completely collapsed!

  24. Rhona
    20 August 2012 at 3:37 pm

    Sorry, had to ask my husband for the URL. Here’s the European Court of Human Rights decision in question, Stuebing Vs. Germany against the premise that there is such a thing as ‘consensual adult’ incest:

    Stuebing versus Germany (European Court of Human Rights, 2012):

  25. Bob
    20 August 2012 at 10:37 pm

    Is that why it’s been decriminalised already in Peoples Republic of China, Japan, Israel, Turkey, Spain, Portugal, France , Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia, Ukraine and Argentina.

    It’s irrelevant what you find repugnant – with respect.

  26. Rhona
    21 August 2012 at 1:21 pm

    However, Germany has provided opponents of ‘consensual adult’ incest with good legal grounds for opposing the practise, which can be cited in other contexts…like parliamentary submissions. I think that this is a positive move. And fortunately, none of those jurisdictions are in the British Commonwealth. Indeed, the United Kingdom itself criminalises adult sibling incest.

    And in any case, amongst the Council of Europe members cited in the Stuebing vs Germany case, Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Finland, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Moldova, San Marino, Slovakia, Denmark, Italy, Poland, Romania, Sweden, Switzerland, Hungary and the United Kingdom have all criminalised ‘consensual adult’ incest, so it is far from a uniform trend.

  27. Bob
    21 August 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Gay marriage isn’t a “uniform trend”.

    Neither is polygamy.

    But still exists and being fought for

  28. Rhona
    22 August 2012 at 1:52 pm

    And opposed. Have you seen the latest Gaynz.Com? Specifically its section on same sex marriage and polygamy and polyamory, which strongly condemns polygamy as abusive to women and children.

    The same author has an extraordinarily balanced piece on euthansia in his blog. He doesn’t seem to be behind Maryann Street’s bill at all.

  29. Rhona
    22 August 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Hee hee. I don’t think Street is going to like that! I quite like Young’s accurate perceptions of disabled people’s adverse perceptions of the euthanasia apologists in particular.

  30. Bob
    22 August 2012 at 11:24 pm

    Don’t think Street will take much notice of that blog!

  31. Rhona
    24 August 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Sadly not, but at least it shows that support for Street’s radical euthanasia agenda is weak even within her own community.

  32. hone
    28 August 2012 at 2:42 pm

    the problem is sociaty cant keep it in there pants. everyone out there just wants to get off with as many people as they can. nature built the sexual urge into us so we produce babies and dont go exstinct. homosexuality is actually a bastardisation of that urge,… because you cant produce a family out of it, nature says so. but, manipulation of our laws will allow them to get around that -adoptin etc but at the cost of the institution of marrage as i /we know it.currently,if you say “im married”. that ALSO sends a signal to sociaty that im not gay. if the law goes through then ill find myself having to “explain” “ah ,by the they way, im straight”. when im sighing documents for example, where they will say married or single, ill say married, but ill feel weird because ill be wondering if the person that reads it might be thinking /wondering “is he gay or straight”. hetero sexual people will understand what i mean and why. homo sexual people wont.

    why is gay rights so closly linked to racisem. has anyone else noticed that?. i beleive its a cop out. the maori party are only voting there support for it because of that. perhaps they think that people who dislike homos are also the same people who are racist against blacks or maori.? far from the truth for i myself am maori. i also have a relative who is gay. (who doesnt). i get on with fine and dont hate him or anything. the govt needs to stop playing at being family archetect.

  33. bob
    29 August 2012 at 6:25 am

    Well done Bob & Family First for fighting so hard against the 1st reading of the Gay Marriage Bill. Shame that 80 MPs thought their personal opinions counted more than logic or supporting marriage so that future generations can be raised as best as possible…

    Oh well, fight on for the submissions and next readings huh? Though it sadly seems most MPs are now social liberals and are hellbent on pushing through their (constantly revising) idea of human rights.

    By the way, did you see the guest post National’s spin doctor David Farrar ran? Found a ‘catholic’ in favour of gay marriage. Pity she hasn’t spoken to her bishop about this, huh?


    P.S. Sorry to post this comment on an old post, but the comments box is not appearing on recent posts, but works fine on older posts like this one. Are comments turned off on more recent posts? Too much hate mail? ;(

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