Support for legalizing same-sex marriage can be achieved without supporting the case for polygamy. This article responds to Professor Calhoun by raising objections to Calhoun's three main points. Polygamy does not strengthen the case for same-sex marriage because polygamy has not achieved any cultural significance equaling monogamy. Advocating the state to adopt a pluralistic, contractual approach to marriage overlooks the fact that the liberal state's role is not only to enforce but also to regulate private contracts. Polygamy is structurally problematic because it exacerbates the crises marriages face. Because same-sex marriages do not suffer from the same structural problems polygamous marriages suffer from, the author concludes that arguments for same-sex marriage can be put forward without supporting polygamy.
Samuel C. Rickless,
Polygamy and Same-Sex Marriage: A Response to Calhoun,
San Diego L. Rev.
Available at: https://digital.sandiego.edu/sdlr/vol42/iss3/17