The state Senate of Utah voted this week to reclassify polygamy from a felony to a misdemeanor crime. In an oh-so-predictable twist, conservatives have already blamed marriage equality.
To be clear: polygamy is not legal in Utah, even under the new statute. That hasn’t stopped conservative publication The Federalist from a hyperbolic attack on LGBTQ rights, in essence blaming legalization of polygamy which hasn’t even happened on queer visibility and marriage equality.
Author David Marcus writes:
“The reason polygamy became inevitable is that once untethered from the concept of man and wife, there is simply no basis for constraining marriage to two people…Now that the concept of marriage has been turned into a malleable plastic, how can critics of polygamy who championed gay marriage say with a straight face that consenting adults should be barred from the practice? Social progressivism has left us after the past two decades in a place where marriage is whatever we want it to be, gender is whatever we want it to be, and even history is whatever we think we need it to be to solve today’s problems. All is relativism. In the digital age, nothing is written in stone. It can all be cut, copied, and pasted; it can all be rewritten, rewired, recoded.”
Marcus also decries defenders of marriage equality who denounced polygamy as part of their argument. He also manages to work in a ludicrous complaint of removing statues of Confederate figures like Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis as erosion of our heritage (forget that those guys were traitors to and enemies of the United States who favored its dissolution and who thought to keep an entire race of people as slaves was a good idea).
He then goes on to say “The slippery slopes are real. They are not fabricated conspiracy theories spun by bigoted conservatives; they are the obvious fallout of decisions we make as a society and nation. For all intents and purposes, polygamy is now legal in the United States. This proves yet again that any time a progressive utters the phrase, ‘That will never happen,’ you should sprint to your bookie and put down a good chunk of change that it will.”
David Marcus’ credentials, for the record, consist of penning essays for National Review and The New York Post, as well as a failed career as an actor. That hardly makes him an expert in marriage tort.
And just for the record, polygamy remains illegal under federal law. Thus, even if Utah did try to legalize the practice, it would still remain a crime. We have a feeling David Marcus probably remains willfully ignorant on that point. Then again, Marcus the failed actor has, no doubt found the part of a lifetime: conservative gasbag. And his performance still sucks.