Instigator / Pro

Polygamy should be legalised if marriage is still present in the society in question.


The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

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After 3 votes and with 9 points ahead, the winner is...

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Two days
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Two weeks
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Round 1
Intro Speech

Okay, so the issue with the angle of this resolution is that ultimately I see it as backwards to what should be but I am aware that since monogamy is the status quo and since most readers are going to think that if we want polyamory, the natural thing to do is to get rid of marriage, I angled it with me as Pro even though the initial Burden of Proof (BoP) is on Con here because Con's natural angle is to support marriage but with the limit of two people per marriage that can uniquely be in that a monogamous marriage and no other at any given time. This BoP is important to comprehend as I make my case because my case is going to be heavily destructive as opposed to constructive and the reason for that is that I intend to prove that the natural way humans compete would be polygamous as opposed to monogamous and then go into what marriage is justified by and why, instead of getting rid of marriage, the natural progression of a society that upholds marriage as important is to legalise polygamy.

Protection against Troll-like Kritiks:

Troll Kritik (TK) #1: What if polygamy is legal? Then we can't legalise it.

Protective Retort (PR) #1: It is about that the legalisation of Polygamy should occur (and therefore that it should have occurred in the first place). If Polygamy is already legal, it's then up to Con to justify outlawing it, otherwise the default is to assume it should have been legalised in the first place and thus this Kritik falls flat due to almost all reasons for it being legal, being reasons to make it legal from its illegal state in the first place and vice versa.

TK #2: Why shouldn't we just get rid of marriage altogether and let polyamory occur, unfettered?

PR #2.1: If the society in place has marriage, the path of least resistance is to seek a way of handling customs that respects what the society hold sacred but meshing it with what outliers wish to be permitted to do in an equally 'sacred' manner. The solution of getting rid of the sacred custom altogether to enable those wanting a more exotic and unusual way of carrying it out is going to cause far less peace and harmony with said progression of society and on top of that is going to make both sides unhappy if marriage matters to them.

PR #2.2: There is a series of reasons why all societies on Earth have a version of 'marriage' but sure, unmarried legally-single couples/thruples/quadruples etc. are entitled to do that even if polygamy is legal, so the question isn't if marriage is a necessity but rather if its presence is desirable and a strong enough want in any society that isn't essentially devoid of love and optimal in how it operates marriage for anyone other than the rich (which I will prove later).

Defence against predictable attacks on Polygamy made by Pro-Monogamists

Note: My defense will quote and have, as part of it, a lot of offensive points. These will include mental health, STD-transfer debunking etc. I won't go too heavily into that because it's up to my opponent to prove, I will be exploring more in-depth analysis and rebuttals to common points raised by pro-monogamists and leave it at that, seeing where my opponent takes the debate trying to shut off usual lines of attack. The polygamist is actually the defensive-side despite begin Pro (as I explained earlier in this Round).

Fallacious Attack (FA) #1: Polygamy helps the rich get 50 wives and all the poor, ugly and dumb men will be left with no one to marry so it's better to force 49 of those women to settle for less as we help our society be fair to the inferior men.

Ninja Polygamist Defence (NPD) #1.1: This is most hilarious because apart from Islamic socities that legalise polygyny but still have no polyandry, there's not been official marriage occurring in societies where polygamy has helped the rich more than the poor and even in Islamic society, I would love you to observe that polygamy occurs to a maximum of 4 women per man and is fundamentally about family dynasties marrying rich women off to rich men... You see, my darling monogamist, you have a delusion of fairness to the poor in monogamous society and it stems from the fact that you think the 'fairness' which inspired monogamy in the first place was something that remotely involved the poor, let alone care for them. The rich invented monogamy because it helped rich families with many daughters and few sons (or no sons at all) have equal power in negotiating marriage and keeping family ties strong between the rich and powerful despite the bad luck of having only female offspring to 'trade with'. This didn't help the poor at all as the poor couldn't even afford the marriage certificate, let alone a half-decent ceremony so spare me the idea that polygamy punishes the poor, all that happens is these super-inferior extreme of ugly, poor, dumb and even emotionally toxic men end up ideally with no one at all as the women would rather be single than marry such a man for any reason other than finance, in which case they'd actually benefit more from polygamy than a society without it. Also note, polygamy isn't exclusively polygyny-variant. In fact, if society does evolve to consider gender-fluid variants as neither gender, there'd become a third variant or rather it would be polygamy without being polygyny or polyandry. 

NPD #1.2: Polygamy does benefit rich families who get lucky enough to have many male offspring in less-developed, Patriarchal societies but in societies where things are becoming severely egalitarian in every sense, polyamory (which in those cultures is distinct from Polygamy as there's a very official way to marry that legally binds the man as much as the women to the other, or same to same if homosexual) and this can then be held as opposed to polyamory where only the ceremony occurs but no marriage certificate exists. Either way, polygamy is both the past and the future of human relationships and reproductive selection because as unfair as it is, it is actually the most fair in the end (I will explain more on how the unfairness is actually the fairness later, it requires you to understand that the world is becoming less Patriarchal but overall proves itself true regardless).

Note, the following source uses the word Polygamy loosely to include non-legally-bound-marriage Polyamory as well as Polygamy. This doesn't discredit what it's found, rather it had to be that way because official marriage is not even a real thing in many less developed nations, legally marrying people without getting the marriage certificate for each marriage is actually a real thing that happens but is unimportant to what it's trying to prove and convey:

Polyamory does not feature in any census tick box but anecdotal evidence suggests that it is on the rise. Some are even calling for it to be recognised by law following the legalisation of gay marriage in the UK and the US. All this raises of the question of whether the future of love may be very different from our current conceptions of romance.

But love has always been the same, right? A man falls for a woman, they get married, pop out a few children and stay together in a harmonious and monogamous relationship for life.

Sorry romantics. This wasn’t, and still isn’t, always the picture of love. Polygamy – where more than one spouse is allowed – was the norm for many of our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Monogamy started flourishing when our ancestors began to settle down. A preference for it then appears to have arisen, among many other reasons, for economic purposes.

It made it easier for fathers to divide and share valuable commodities such as land with their children. Monogamy later got hijacked by romantic love by idealistic 19th Century Victorians. “The idea of sexual exclusivity started emerging fairly late in the game,” says professor of law Hadar Aviram at UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco, US.

Even today monogamy is the minority relationship style around the world. Cultural estimates suggest that as many as 83% of societies around the world allow polygamy.

To start with, in a 2014 review paper Conley found that polyamorous people tend to maintain more friendships as they keep a wider social network. They are also less likely to cut off contact after a break-up.

Monogamous couples on the other hand, often withdraw from their friends in the first, loved-up stages of their relationship.

Conley also found that individuals in poly relationships are better at communicating and that jealousy is often lower. In new research, not yet published, she even discovered that overall relationship satisfaction can be higher in poly relationships, though another earlier 2015 review found that satisfaction was similar among monogamous and “consensual non-monogamous” relationships.

Nor do they seem more likely to spread sexually transmitted diseases. Indeed, an anonymous online study revealed that openly non-monogamous people are more likely to practice safe sex than cheating individuals in seemingly monogamous relationships. 

Taking all her findings into consideration, Conley says that married monogamous couples could learn from a poly way of life. They could use using similar ways to communicate and resolve conflict for example. “The idea is that we put too much stress on marriage and need to give it more oxygen by giving people more resources,” she says. “A lot of the strategies used in poly relationships can map onto suggestions of how we improve marriage.”
- Click the relevant studies emboldened, in blue to find their source.

Continutation of NPD #1.2: The idea that it was for the rich originally is true but I will now show why it is popular even in non-Patriarchal societies and why progression in society doesn't really stop polyamory in general. The reason why more egalitarian societies originally outlawed polygamy was indeed because they felt polygamy was too often polygyny and that it was rigging society in favour of powerful, rich men and the families that raised them. The issue is that as society has progressed to become more egalitarian, polyamory (polygamy without the marriage aspect) has increased a lot with cohabitation often being what people would prefer to do if it was both more socially and legally/economically viable to do but since only monogamy is legally binding and leads people to get different taxation and cohabitation clauses in both renting and purchasing of estate, it results in cohabitation and 'genuine polyamory' still being unpopular due to said stigma and lack of legal backing.

I shall finish off NPD #1.2 with this source-quote:
discovered polyamory when I was 23. I met a parliament of poly performers at the Adelaide Festival who were hippyish, liberal and kind. These performers spoke about their partners, children, poly-families. There were ex-couples who were working together on shows while their other poly families toured elsewhere, married couples who had live-in partners, triumvirates where they all balanced an equal partnership. I was entranced by their openness. It seemed symbolic of our changing global world, and most peoples developing nomadic lifestyles where we travel for work and find love with others on the way.

So when I went to study at theatre school in Paris (fresh out of a relationship with a 45-year-old French father of three), I decided to embrace my inner Barbarella. And the reality? Non-monogamy is rather ordinary and occasionally dull. Stereotypes of weird Eyes Wide Shut sex parties and Sartre/de Beauvoir/Olga ménages à trois aside, it’s like any normal relationship, except with more time- management, more conversations about “feelings” and more awkward encounters with acquaintances at parties who try to use you as their “Sexual Awakening Friend Bicycle”, ie that shy girl from book club will get drunk and put her hand on your leg, before leaning in to kiss you, hiccuping: “I really loved Orange Is the New Black…”

There are misconceptions – a date once grabbed me for a kiss unexpectedly despite the fact I had made it clear I was in no way interested (my words were exactly: “This is not going to work. We have entirely different opinions on the EU and you have just told me I am ‘very funny for a woman’.”) When I pushed him away he was shocked. He believed because I was “sexually awakened” he could do what he liked. Luckily my experiences have meant that I am more vocal and confident, and able to stand up for myself. Yes I am open about my relationships and desires, but that doesn’t mean anyone’s allowed to touch me without my permission. Sexual awakenings do not mean the absence of consent.

I must admit, when I first dipped my toes into polyamory I misunderstood, went overboard with Tinder. The experience was stressful and would involve me asking awkward questions like: “Do you think crabs think fish can fly?” while wandering around the National Gallery for the third time that month. (There is no denying that polyamory suits the self-employed schedule). I learned that when people don’t know what polyamory is, they misunderstand it as another term for “hook up”, which it’s not. So previous partners have usually been friends I trust.

People often ask: “How can you truly love someone if you want to be with someone else?” and “Don’t you get jealous?” I think these statements enforce unhealthy relationship ideals. I feel it’s dangerous to think that you’re the only person that can complete someone else’s life, and be their confidant, their friend, their support network and their sexual partner. It’s too much pressure! When you take a step back, drop your ego and realise you’re one unique component of someone’s life, it’s liberating and freeing. Jealousy ebbs away and you realise that, of course, they may find another person attractive, because we’re all different pieces of a puzzle. This has made me more comfortable about myself – I am not holding myself up to standards about traditional female beauty, because I can experience it in a hundred different ways.

Of course, there have been tears, heartbreaks, existential crises and moments when I felt left out. I’ve wondered if it was actually making me more free, or more insecure, with jealousy popping up at the most inconvenient times. I’ve dated people who have lied and I’ve had relationships that have ended because they didn’t trust or believe in polyamory.

But, despite the downs, non-monogamy has revolutionised the way I view love. First, it made me less ashamed of my sexuality. I fancied girls way before I fancied boys. But as a teenager at house parties I remember being made to think that female sexual relationships were purely to turn men on. We’d all seen that scene in Cruel Intentions. I remember girls kissing at parties and the guys cheering. It was performative. Except, I wanted to kiss girls because I liked girls.

When I started getting to know people in the poly community it was as liberating as taking off an underwired bra. I have had partners of both genders. I didn’t have to “choose”: the people I met understood that it was possible to give infinite, equal love to both sexes. My confidence soared. I wasn’t hiding. Men and women had equal place in my life. I no longer felt like a pendulum, swinging from one to another. This refreshing awakening did result in many awkward conversations with my mum and dad though, which would go something like this:

Elf: “Mum and Dad, I am queer.” [Mum puts the hummus down.]

Mum: “What does that mean?”

Elf: “It means I have relationships with men and women”. [Mum picks the hummus up.]

Mum: “Oh! Well, I’m queer. Your father’s queer, your grandmother’s queer, we’re all queer darling!”

Elf: “No you don’t understand. I mean I have sex with men and women.” [Mum drops the hummus.]

Mum: “Oh Elfy… No wonder you’re so tired.”

Although I love sex, because of past unpleasant experiences I’m also mildly afraid of it. So when I started experimenting with non-monogamy the idea of being intimate emotionally as well as physically with more than one person was a challenge. But, the choice gave me a power and ownership over my wants which I felt I had lost and been made to feel ashamed about. I’m not saying I jumped in the sack with everyone I met. God no. I’m too busy. But through being less judgemental on myself, I relaxed, opened up to the people I trusted and started loving myself again. It forces you to be really honest, to live life with an undefended heart.

It’s not been plain sailing. But to quote RuPaul: “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell can you love anyone else” – this is integral to non-monogamy. You can’t use multiple relationships to fill the void and give you the gratification that you should be able to give yourself. More love doesn’t mean better love. If you are dating multiple people in order to enhance your self-worth, you end up feeling like out-of-date hummus, feeling jealous anytime anyone chooses to spend time with anyone else, resulting in you treating your partners badly and without respect.

We shouldn’t feel ashamed about being socially and sexually confident. Women have been made to feel embarrassed for their desires for too long. It’s about having the trust to speak our minds and behave the way we want to. The moment you start to crumble you need to stop and ask exactly what it is you want and if it makes you happy. Being loved and loving multiple people should make you feel stronger, not weaker.

It forces you to be really honest, to live life with an undefended heart
In a time of censorship on women, increases in assault and constant critiques on how we should behave, polyamory and its manifesto of embracing our evolving feelings, sharing responsibility and communicating and working effectively with people from all around the world could help revolutionise the way we tackle privilege, inequality and control of women’s rights.

I have an authority and a voice that I didn’t feel I had before. My friendships are better, my health is better. Through being polyamorous and being a part of the community I have been made aware of issues, both personal and political, that need to be uncovered and addressed.

The world would be a better place if everybody was more open to polyamory. As well as that traditional idea, that it takes a village to raise a child, it would mean we’d all love more, and love better. Loving different people at the same time is like learning a different language. There are different rules every time and it’s always open for discussion. You start to realise that love is infinite. Every time you say “I love you” to someone it takes on a new meaning. It’s retranslated, and it’s wonderful.

FA #2: Polygamy makes people less happy and makes the relationship naturally neglect one beta-male or equivalent for a female, if not more than one in bigger polyamorous-chains.

NPD #2.1: I would predict here a huge point in favour of polygamy being legalised; since only monogamy can legally be the marriage in many nations, 'polygamy' ends up being polyamory where only some pairs are married officially. The strain of envy and also economic aspects of only that marriage being legally recognised as the 'true marriage' in the polyamorous relationship-web is what can and no doubt does cause friction because it lessens the significance of the other relationships unless it's very blatant that the 'marriage' is the superficial part as opposed to the relationships. This is still toxic even in the latter scenario as it lessens what marriage means and is unjustifiable stigma against such relationships based on the idea that they are purely about Patriarchy and economic elitism.

NPD #2.2: It's blatantly unrealistic and unjustifiably nonsensical that we are raised from a young age via fairytales and Conservative-styled nuclear family idealism to think that one man is both enough for a woman who is singularly enough for the man. I know that the retort to this is 'one lover, many platonic friends does the trick' but even sexually, are you telling me the likelihood of all your kinks being fulfilled by this one person and then all their kinks being what you're the type for is a likely outcome? Do you even know how to gamble? This is so unrealistic to think can be possible and what exactly is 'true love'? I understand it if you split it between many people and they split you up and take the part(s) of you they love and adore but the occurrences of one person being both the consistent type that the other wants in each department of their personality and physique and then the opposite way around happening (the other being the exact type for said person) is simply utterly ridiculous to aim for. It's not impossible, it's simply brutally improbable such that to make laws restricting people who 'split up' each other and love the 'group' fully in the way we think they should love one person in a monogamous relationship not only increases stability if one person is down emotionally, physically or financially but it completely makes it clear to everyone involved that you should only be in the relationship if you want to be, you're free to leave and the other isn't going to be totally crushed emotionally, sexually or financially if you leave. There are very few studies supporting me on this blatant truth because there has been no society so far that has actively engaged in proper cultural two-way polygamy where it isn't patriarchal and financially elitist but on a small-scale it has at least been proven they are 'as good' as monogamous ones (but I seriously can't believe they're only as good and have had many heartbreaks on a personal level to lead me to have anecdotal bitterness and realisation that this is simply a toxic thing to aim for, no one is your entire type and you aren't theirs either... Not even sexually but even if that's the case, it's silly to say the platonic friends can fulfil you in the same way other lovers can/would purely due to time and effort put into maintaining said bonds).

What I believe the optimal society of humanity is, is a society where we all end up being a local community that is an incestuous family but not the paedophilic kind. What this means is that it's not about parent-child type incest but that's not out-rules once the 'child' is not a child at all anymore with respects to their age. What I believe the optimal society would be is very, very similar to Plato's republic (for those who haven't studied it, it's undeniably Utopia in my eyes). Everyone should love everyone fully and passionately, one kid being bullied by another is absolutely disgusting and wrong even fi the bully or victim are not 'your kid' but society today doesn't think so, they just point at the flawed parents and say 'your fault, not ours you impotent monogamous pair'. The parents of all children should be fully responsible for the parents of all other children in any feasible optimal society. The only reason we aren't there yet is we say 'well what if a Muslim family wants to cut the foreskin off their kid against its will, raise it to be a homophobic animal-torturing... What I am saying is that eventually a community has to agree on one ideology and if a minority disagrees, there should be debate. You're either right or you're wrong. I don't mean right or wrong about raising your kid to love a certain band or type of something, I mean raising in a specific way, with specific beliefs. You cannot sit there and tell me it's right for families to be entitled to privacy and then say it's wrong to abuse children. There should not be privacy involved with that. How are you going to stop a parent subtly brainwashing or abusing their child in a way the rest of that society thinks is toxic if we aren't all equally responsible for the upbringing of that child? Foster care is a complete disaster in all nations that have it. Whatever, I'm done preaching and will go more into this in later Rounds. Let's just finish off with the sources:

NOTE: THE ONLY STUDIES THAT PROVE THAT CHILDREN OR ANYONE SUFFERS IN POLYAMOROUS RELATIONSHIPS HAS ONLY STUDIED IT IN SOCIETIES THAT BULLY KIDS OF THESE RELATIONSHIPS AND CALL THEIR FAMILIES 'BROKEN HOMES'...So, before Con brings up 'harms of polyamory to the children' and other such studies, the harms are because of it not being polygamy and there being strain legally and socially on that it's not 'proper marriage' among other things leading to social isolation of the children by the kids of ignorant monogamists and also due to them focusing on situations where only one partner in a particular pair is into the polyamory (the fact society and the studies split polyamorous relationships up by pairs itself is half the issue).

I end it here, I will dig into Con's case in the next Round and 'build' a proper case based on what Con attacks Polygamy with.

Thank you to RM for the debate. 


What is legalization, anyway? Webster's defines Marriage as "the state of being united as spouses in a consensual and contractual relationship recognized by law[1]" When we talk about marriage we are necessarily talking about a formal, state sanctioned arrangement. Thus, the debate is not about whether the state should hunt down and imprison people who say they are married to multiple spouses, but whether or not that arrangement deserves governmental sanction.

In this debate I will prove that polygamy is not only socially cancerous, but fundamentally unworkable in a modern state.


I. Polygamy is Impractical 

Polygamous marriages could be abused incredibly easily because the entire economic system is predicated on marriage being between two people. If polygamous marriages were given equal status to monogamous ones, widespread abuse of the system would begin overnight.

A few examples off the top of my head: 

-Workers could legally marry all of their coworkers or friends, enabling them to claim dozens of exemptions on their tax returns and reducing their tax burden to zero

-Retirees could legally marry their wealthiest friends and claim higher social security benefits, straining an already overburdened system to the breaking point

-Workers could all marry each other and claim healthcare benefits from one person.

-Parents could marry the parents of all of their children's friends, allowing them to get dozens of child tax credits

-Criminals could get married before the act, because in many jurisdictions it would mean that they could not testify against each other and that their communications would be privileged[2]

With these kind of incentives, even monogamous people would be fools not to marry others on paper for the benefits. The treasury would be drained overnight.

I could not begin to list the number of institutions built up over thousands of years of monogamous society that would have to be fundamentally altered--what RM is proposing is not a simple matter of the government staying out of peoples business, it is a fully fledged social revolution. Property rights, welfare benefits, insurance, divorce proceedings/family law...these things are *all* predicated on a system of marriage between two individuals and it is not clear at all what they would look like in a Polygamous world. It isn't enough to wax poetic about a utopian society, RM needs to provide a mechanism that can prevent widespread abuse as well as laying out a framework for how a polygamous society would actually work.

II. Polygamy is Destructive 

Polygamy is a cancerous social arrangement. An analysis of polygamous and monogamous societies found that "In suppressing intrasexual competition and reducing the size of the pool of unmarried men, normative monogamy reduces crime rates, including rape, murder, assault, robbery and fraud, as well as decreasing personal abuses."[3]

A polygamous society is one of never ending male competition to attract mates. A more equal distribution of spouses, where each man can only have one wife, reduces male competition and violence. Rauch explains[4]:

"...when a high-status man takes two wives (and one man taking many wives, or polygyny, is almost invariably the real-world pattern), a lower-status man gets no wife. If the high-status man takes three wives, two lower-status men get no wives... This competitive, zero-sum dynamic sets off a competition among high-status men to hoard marriage opportunities, which leaves lower-status men out in the cold. Those men, denied access to life's most stabilizing and civilizing institution, are unfairly disadvantaged and often turn to behaviors like crime and violence."

Young men without roots and without hope are the most dangerous group in the world. This is why an analysis of Indian states found that when the sex ratio went up 8%, violence against women due to the increase of unmarried men went up 22%[5]. Unmarried men often feel that they have nothing to lose and are more likely to "act out", especially when they're thrown into an incredibly unhealthy sexual marketplace where many men are competing for a small number of women. Marriage tames even criminals, which is why a 40 year longitudinal study of criminals in London found that the conviction rate of ex cons who stayed married to their spouses fell by 80%[6]

Economically, marriage is a uniquely stabilizing institution. An analysis of the United States from the Institute of Family Studies[7] found that only 3% of people who graduate high school, work full time jobs, and get married before having children are in poverty, compared with 12.3% of the general population[8]. Polygamy freezes many out of this incredibly beneficial institution.

I have a lot to say about my opponents case, but I never got his approval to attack it in the first round, and three more rounds will provide more than enough clash. Please vote Con. 


5. file:///Users/stephenhodges/Downloads/missingwomen_paa%20(1).pdf
Round 2
Con, either intentionally or accidentally (if so, very unfortunately) has confused unfettered polyamory for polygamy. This is not entirely his fault and I understand if voters start to make this a semantics battle where Con has equal footing but if you read my Round 1 and resolution it's made severely clear, in my eyes, that I am referring to official polygamy and not to non-marriage-based polygamy. Otherwise, what am I discussing outlawing? I am not talking about not putting someone to prison for cheating on their married-partner, that would also be quite an extremist stance for Con to have to be defending. This is about official polygamy:

The polygamist family featured in the reality television show “Sister Wives” lost its bid to overturn parts of Utah’s anti-bigamy law under a federal appeals court ruling issued on Monday.

The case, filed after the show’s popularity prompted a criminal investigation into whether star Kody Brown was illegally married to four women, drew international attention and raised questions about whether the state could bar consenting adults from living together as a family.

Polygamy is illegal in all 50 states. But Utah’s law is unique in that a person can be found guilty not just for having two legal marriage licenses, but also for cohabiting with another adult in a marriage-like relationship when already legally married to someone else.

Brown is legally married to one of his wives, and “spiritually” married to the others.

In 2013, U.S. District Judge Clark Waddoups struck down part of the state’s law, saying it criminalizes intimate relationships among consenting adults.

But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit overturned that ruling on Monday. The court said because the Browns had not actually been charged under the law - and the state said it would not prosecute multiple marriage cases unless there were allegations of fraud or criminal activity - the case was moot.

“Federal courts are courts of limited jurisdiction,” the court wrote. “They lack power to decide issues - however important or fiercely contested - that are detached from a live dispute between the parties.”
What is polygamy?
Polygamy is the act of marrying multiple spouses, that means having more than one husband or wife at the same time.

The term is the opposite of monogamy which is the more common practice of having just one spouse at any given moment.

The habit was once quite widespread across parts of the globe and is still practiced by some to this day.

But in most countries, polygamy is now illegal or at the very least not officially recognised.

What forms does polygamy take?
There are generally assumed to be three forms of polygamy: polygyny, polyandry and group marriage.

  • Polygyny is when a man has multiple wives.
  • Polyandry is when a woman has multiple husbands
  • Group marriage is a bit of a free for all where the family unit consists of a mish-mash of spouses from both sexes

Con is referring to that adultery (which is basically cheating but specific to when it's done to someone you're married to and not just your girlfriend/boyfriend who legally you aren't married to) is legal and causes a lot of pain and other things to happen as a result. The harms that the studies Coin brings forth come with pseudo-polygamous relationships which are pseudo not because they lack marriage alone but because they are done where only one partner in a 'pairing' actually wants the polyamory and all of that, while the others is filled with envy, pain and regret.

I am pressed for time due to on-site and off-site stuff, so forgive me that this particular Round I can't go study-by-study but I am going to offer overall counters to what they attack being my suggested polygamy. While my end goal is actually a society where we all love each other in 'groups of a bigger group' and take care of each other as one big tight-knit interconnected family of a society and destroy this idea of a nuclear family or any kind of overt tribalism that would lead to divides, I am aware this is an extreme end-goal. The idea that everyone should marry everyone is still not present even in my ideal society, it's about groups working together to serve the young and each other in a way 'one person' can't do to another.

Imagine a society where 'hiring a nanny' was standard but not because the ideal was monogamy and not because the 'worker-parents' were less important to the household(s) involved. Imagine if those who are more naturally predisposed to child-rearing, whether male or female, raise the children of others in their neighbourhoods full-time and do it without the biological parents regretting it and without society pointing fingers saying 'yeah but it's proven by studies that the child won't bond as well with their parents'. If we had a society of organised daycare, strategised nanny systems of active, genuine concepts of them taking care of all the 'group that's married' and their offspring we wouldn't have the harms that come with Con's case against me and the studies involved. You see, just because a father is a severely introverted pure-mathematics professor who can't bond too well with his biological children, doesn't mean that the child can't bond with the nanny and allocated people like that. The father is earning cash for the 'group' and serving society as a whole in what he does. We are not all built to be parents in the conventional sense psychologically and just due to the plain skill-set we have as a person. Shitty parents should not be forced to raise their children better, I am telling you right here that this would become a non-necessity in a polygamous-mainstream society. Shitty parents are brilliant workaholics or brilliant at something else. Unless you are talking about a nasty person who is also 'bad at everything' then you'd find everyone can contribute to a polygamous situation and earn their keep to have offspring as part of the children-group and passing their genes on. It only is toxic like Con portrays when there's deception involved. Cheating is not polygamy, this is a wrong usage of the term. This isn't about hedonistic polyamory where we have a monogamous relationship calling itself 'open' but only one partner really believing in the cause and being severely hurt by the sharing. This is about optimal arrangements so that the nanny-types take care of the young, the introverted nerds go out and give to society being proud of their children that perhaps they aren't the best 'dad' to but that others in their polygamous-unit are and for others to serve their purpose in the arrangement too. We aren't all built the same, that's the beauty of team-work.

We dominated the entire planet by polygamy originally, we changed to monogamy due to elitism. I covered my bases for Con's attack on elitist-polygamy and the fake injustice that appears to form. The reason why, in a Partirarchy, the elite men have more wives is not at all a counter to an egalitarian society having polygamy and I proved in Round 1 that it's still better and fairer to have that elitism happening in the patriarchy as the other 49 wives of the man with 50, are being forced to remain single and suffer economically or whatever else. They are not going to just 'settle for less' they are going to stay single and be unhappy. It's also ridiculous to assume that polygamy is about the rich due to what I said before. It was made by rich families as they realised it was bad for them if they had many female offspring in a particular generation if the females weren't able to 'take men away' from other families to marry. It was about evening the scales among the elite if they had a lot of females. Religion and all that Jazz is nonsense made by the elite to make the poor stay tame, believing in afterlife reward for doing so, and such as the following:

As I noted in my last post, the ethnographic evidence suggests that human nature is adapted to an ancestral mating system that was predominately polygynous (one husband, multiple wives). Most ancestral men aspired to polygyny (even though most weren't impressive enough to attract more than one wife), and some ancestral women preferred to be the co-wife of a really impressive man than the sole wife of a second-rate one.
In other words, the genetically encoded psychological machinery of human mating behavior was built by, and for, a world in which striving for polygyny was often reproductively advantageous. That's why people living in modern societies often seem inclined towards polygyny, even in cultures that have attempted to abolish it.

This last point raises a key question: Why have so many cultures attempted to abolish polygyny? If our ancestors' environments were so polygynous, why is "socially imposed" monogamy—the moral and legal prohibition of polygyny—so common in modern societies? Or more accurately, why is it so common in the West? (Polygyny remains legal and common in many non-Western societies, especially sub-Saharan African and Islamic countries).

Monogamy's spread in the West had something to do with the influence of Christianity, but not as much as you might expect. Mainstream Christianity has always endorsed and enforced monogamy, and as Christianity spread across Europe in the centuries following the fall of Rome, monogamy spread along with it. However, Christianity's condemnation of polygyny has never been as straightforward as anti-polygyny church leaders would have preferred, because no Biblical passages explicitly prohibit plural marriage. Indeed, leaders of breakaway Christian polygynous sects, like 16th-century German Anabaptists and 19th-century American Mormons, have always been eager to point out that several central Old Testament figures are polygynists. Abraham, for instance, had two wives simultaneously, and Solomon had 700 (plus 300 concubines).

Thanks, RM

==RM's Case==

A lot of RM's arguments are defensive arguments addressing points I am not planning to make and thus aren't relevant. In this round I'll attack my opponents case and then circle back to my own. For clarity, I have broken RM's case down to two major points which I will address individually. These are that polygamy will not adversely affect marriage and polygamy will make people happier.


Burden of proof shouldn't be too big of an issue in this debate, but I wanted to clear something up. RM has stated that I have the burden of proof. This is entirely backwards. RM's job as the affirmative is to show you why the resolution needs to be affirmed--moreover, RM is the one advocating for a change in the status quo. All I have to do to win is disprove his arguments, because he has to provide us reasons to change the status quo. 


I. Polygamy won't destroy the marriage market

RM argues that switching to a polygamous society would not lead to "wife hoarding" where rich, powerful, and attractive men end up with all of the wives. 

First, this is not a reason to affirm the resolution. This is a purely defensive argument that doesn't give us a reason to change the status quo. 

More importantly: nothing could be further from the truth. I attempted to find some empirical data on the distribution of mates in a polygamist societies, but I don't really need to. RM's very first argument concedes that rich and powerful men will end up with more wives. RM writes: 

I would love you to observe that polygamy occurs to a maximum of 4 women per man and is fundamentally about family dynasties marrying rich women off to rich men... so spare me the idea that polygamy punishes the poor, all that happens is these super-inferior extreme of ugly, poor, dumb and even emotionally toxic men end up ideally with no one at all as the women would rather be single than marry such a man for any reason other than finance, in which case they'd actually benefit more from polygamy than a society without it. 
Not only has he not proven that Polygamy will be limited to 4 wives, but he admits that many men will end up with no one at all. RM says that this is better for women because they don't have to marry "inferior" men, but they have this option in a monogamous society as well. 

Because men and women are typically equal in number, even a small amount of polygamy would wreck the marriage market. As The Economist states[1]:

If the richest and most powerful 10% of men have, say, four wives each, the bottom 30% of men cannot marry. Young men will take desperate measures to avoid this state.
The simple mathematics of it means that some men won't have any wives at all. The Economist goes on the explain that: 

The taking of multiple wives is a feature of life in all of the 20 most unstable countries on the Fragile States Index compiled by the Fund for Peace, an NGO.
Single, unrooted young men are the most dangerous force in the world--including to women. Remember, once demographics in India changed so that there were 1.08 men for every 1 woman, violence against women increased 22%. Just imagine what would happen if 30% of men (or more) were unable to attract a wife. Polygamy is one of the few things unstable societies all over the globe have in common--this is why monogamous societies have totally outcompeted polygamous ones. 

II. Polygamy makes people happier

RMs second point is a broad criticism of monogamy, arguing that it is unrealistic:

It's blatantly unrealistic and unjustifiably nonsensical that we are raised from a young age via fairytales and Conservative-styled nuclear family idealism to think that one man is both enough for a woman who is singularly enough for the man.
If married people want to have an "open marriage", there is no law against that--the fact that this arrangement is vanishingly rare suggests that few people actually want to do this. Later on, RM argues that it's an absurdity to expect someone to have all of their "kinks" fulfilled by a single person. It's similarly absurd to expect that a woman would be sexually satisfied as the fifth wife of an old rich guy. In reality no system is going to perfectly fulfill everyones sexual fantasies.

There is far more to life than sex. It's no fairytale to say that the poverty rate for married high school grads is a quarter that of the general population. It isn't a fairytale to point out that polygamous societies are notoriously unstable, or that marriage tames even the roughest of men, reducing recidivism of criminals by 80%. These are simply the facts. If we want to address happiness lets look at how our competing visions affect the society around them: hyper competition for mates among males in polygamous societies has a long history of leaving societies a smoking wreckage. Monogamy civilizes even criminals, helps people avoid poverty,  and protects women (and men) from outbursts of violence. 

RM doesn't explain how we're going to get to his "society where we all end up being a local community that is an incestuous family but not the paedophilic kind." We have examples of real life polygamous societies to look to--and it isn't pretty.


RM agrees with my framework that "marriage" in the context of this debate refers to unions that are socially and legally sanctioned, stating that: "it's made severely clear, in my eyes, that I am referring to official polygamy and not to non-marriage-based polygamy." 

RM did not respond at all to my arguments about how polygamy is impractical and cannot coexist with our present system, so please extend these. Remember: without totally changing the system, allowing people to have as many spouses as they want would wreak economic havoc. Financially speaking, everyone would be advised to legally marry as many people as possible for the benefits. The system isn't built for seven wives drawing from one husbands social security or for a father to claim all of his child's friends as dependents after he legally marries their parents. RM has not demonstrated how we could avoid this abuse, nor has he explained how to reform our system to account for polygamous marriages. 

RM didn't really respond to my points about marriage being a beneficial institution, either. He seems to argue that many men wouldn't be denied a mate if we switched to polygamy because he's advocating for an egalitarian society. But he doesn't show us how we can get to this society. We have to work with the society we have now--and the brutal reality of sexual selection is the opposite of egalitarian. The real world examples of polygamous societies that we have almost universally show a pattern of mate hoarding by high status men and constant instability caused by the resentment of the low status men. RM did not dispute the benefits of marriage so please extend them all--even many brutish men are tamed once they have a wife and family in their lives. Marriage decreases poverty and crime. It is an incredibly valuable social institution that has more than earned its social sanction. Compare this to polygamy, os which RM has not shown us any benefit. 

Please vote Con.


Round 3
I ask you, voters, to consider that I was surprise-banned forcing me to have to produce a full Round for both this and another in-depth debate an entire 24+ hours earlier than I originally planned for. Not only that, but the actual discussion of the ban and stress involved with it (yes, seriously I experienced physical stress due to it and it caused me to become very tired afterwards and approaching the ban as there was a whole day's delay involved) ended up accumulating to me not fully going into all counterpoints and bringing up all studies or data to cancel out what Con raised in previous rounds. Con goes second each Round, so has a full Round still to Counter me uninhibited and due to what I have done I even invite Con to raise new studies and points against what I raise in Round 4 because I likely will have to bring up something slightly new to counter what Con says/does in R3.

This Round I can hopefully link all that has been said so far while stringing in some studies and data if need be. I will like to point out that I was about to quit the site but that's not really relevant and I still had a lot of time to think about this debate even before the debate prior to making it but just bear in mind that there's been a lot of things accumulating to me rushing this debate overall compared to what I could have done in R2 and even this Round.

I will now explain why I believe Con's counter-case to be self-refuting and my case to thus be ultimately supported by Con despite Con saying otherwise.

I am going to be replying to Con as if both Con's R1 and R2 were the same Round. This will help me keep my rebuttals concise and well-aimed and is not a matter of laziness but rather restraint both for the readers and writer(s) in this debate to conclude it faster. At this point I genuinely believe that Con supports the legalisation of polygamy but is concerned with the ability of people in the society to either adjust to it or to make it feasible in the first place in a long-term sense.

Con's essential counter-case in my own words, if I may, is that humans are inherently greedy, Patriarchal and without moral restraint in the face of laws allowing people to do things that they otherwise would so then Con's ultimate case against the resolution is that laws should exist to help us fight our darker nature and/or assist us in stabilising things to achieve the best for all. What I seek to prove in this Round is that not only has egalitarianism already been largely achieved in certain nations but that even if humans are inherently as sociopathic as Con implies, the society nets more benefit from polygamy than law-enforced monogamy.

If humans in a society are left to their own devices, Con would have us believe that they/we ('we' because I assume the voters and such are human):
[will produce male offspring without roots or hopes and] young men without roots and without hope are the most dangerous group in the world.
- Con R1
- The part in brackets are not Con's own words but context relating to how I've quoted him that helps understand what he's said in relation to it.

The way that Con proves this is based on assertion from someone who was arguing that we shouldn't encourage group marriage, not that we should outlaw it completely but even more than that, it only analysed societies that... Actually, this is a good time to explain exactly what has happened to the world and why monogamy was legally 'forced' in the first place.

So, the legal forcing of monogamy and the idea that polygamy is an evil thing did indeed occur more so in places that, despite totally ignoring their morals and ethics when invading other nations, ended up being nations we now know and respect as fairly egalitarian... This is, indeed, correlated with such nations being Christian or of a monogamy-encouraging religion (Buddhism encourages monogamy as do some other religions but that's not important to what I am about to go into). If you observe Christian nations (who were colonised or less officially invaded and influenced to end up that way) you will find that despite monogamy being a central part of their religion, there's a glaring issue in so many respects in some nations that forced them to have to allow polygamy... Name three? Alright, Kenya, Chad and Cameroon. Yes, all three are examples of African nations that both ended up influenced by Christian colonisation and Islamic... What should we call it, Imperialism? It's really just semantics if you ask me. The only difference between what the Ottoman empire and other such Islamic groups did to North and East Africa versus what The Brits, French, Portuguese and whoever else did to the rest of Africa is that the Islamic invasion didn't put a flag as such it enforced a religion of Islam and said 'you belong to this group' whereas the Colonial method still forced the alternate religion of Christianity and said 'you belong to our nation'. The reason I find this ironic is that if you look at which of the two is pro-polygyny vs pro-monogamy, you'd then wonder why the Christian invaders are the ones implying one 'alpha male nation' can have many 'wife-nations'... I know, I am somewhat making that analogy up since you could argue it's more 'one parent many children' relationship but ultimatley colonial methods are that of polygyny and the Islamic method is one that has one nation loyal to one flag... So, it's quite a twist. Where am I going with this? I am trying to build up the idea in your head that monogamy is nothing to do with morality, it's based on hypocritical elitist game-theory that I already explicitly explained was made by (admittedly wiser, sorry if you're Muslim) 'western Elite' who had the realisation that to ensure the elite families stay happy with each other and united in their Elitism, they need to prevent bad luck of producing many daughters in the ratio to many sons as screwing over that family's power and dynasty. Sure, it would screw over the 'name' of the family passing on if they had no sons but if they had one or two sons versus 12 daughters in that generation, at least the daughters can be powerful family-tie-binders and by forcing men to compete over wives has indeed had a chain reaction that I ADMIT, yes I ADMITTED has led to egalitarianism being achieved in Western nations. 

I am not admitting that to do Con a favour alone, I want to get that out of the way so we can both compete in a sportsmanlike manner (yes, I noticed it's 'man' and not 'person' but the term sportspersonlike is not really an English word yet). What happened in the older times was the only way to counteract the unfair power of one rich family having many male offspring does to them and their snowball-influence, is to force the said men to highly value and need to carefully choose the female they marry. The reason this mattered was so little to do with the legal elements of marriage other than the fact that in those days adultery was punishable by law. Yes, yes oh yes... You didn't realise this one Con. The reason that monogamy, even in a normative sense, was desirable was that it was so brutally enforced.

Many European countries once had anti-adultery laws on the books, but most were repealed in the 1970s and 1980s. The last European nations to decriminalise infidelity were Austria, in 1997, and Romania, in 2006.

The story is similar in Latin America, which saw a flurry of decriminalisation in the 1990s.

In the US, however, adultery remains technically illegal in 21 states. In most states, including New York, cheating on your spouse is considered only a misdemeanour. But in Idaho, Massachusetts, Michigan, Oklahoma and Wisconsin, among others, it is a felony crime punishable by prison.

However, attempts to enforce historic anti-fornication laws are vanishingly rare.

The laws remain on the books largely due to inertia, says The New York Times. Getting rid of them would require politicians to vocally oppose them - something few are willing to do.

Additionally, “many like the idea of the criminal code serving as a kind of moral guide even if certain laws are almost never applied”, says the newspaper.

That certainly was not the case in South Korea, whose adultery laws still very much had teeth in the 21st century. Between 2008 and 2015, when adultery was finally decriminalised, more than 5,500 people were successfully prosecuted for cheating on their partner, CNN reports.

Elsewhere in East Asia, adultery remains illegal in Taiwan and the Philippines.

What happened was fascinating, in my eyes. As society progressed, it first (as Con agrees) came up with this idea (made by the Elites who realised that having many daughters vs many sons in a particular generation was too punishing vs rewarding respectively for one of them in relation to the other Elite families) and so, of course, that then became the ideal way to interpret the Bible... Doesn't matter to me, I am not bothered about why monogamy began. I agree with Con, it helped stopped a huge element of how severely powerful Elite men were over Elite women... Did you see the joke, yet? Did you quite understand what I just did and said? Elite men become equal, relatively, to Elite women in 'power' and 'prestige' due to monogamy and only then if adultery is legally punishable. So, what caused the more developed and egalitarian nations to gradually move towards making adultery legal but leaving bigamy/polygamy illegal but(same law that bans bigamy is what ends up outlawing polygamy)?

This is the exact opposite of what society should have done, yet they did it anyway. I will tell you why, shall I say it again? Polygamy, with adultery being illegal, in a Patriarchal society, ends up extremely benefiting Elite males disproportionately above Elite females. It does not, can not and will not do what Con implied and this is why it was the single first point I raised in predictive countering. I don't exactly support making adultery illegal once more, I understand the idea behind not having that legally punishable just morally so. I do, however, say that if either polygamy or adultery should be illegal as a solution to the problematic tyranny of monogamy, it should be that polygamy became legal and not adultery.

There is a reason why adultery was legalised, that reason is something both the rich and poor agreed was beneficial; it allowed again the arrangements of one rich person having many sexual paid-for sugar-honies and whatever else and other than the playboy-types also enabled the poor willing to serve in some way to another to either gain citizenship or some other thing financially or illegally without that other partner being necessarily 'chained' to the other in an emotional or sexual way. It achieve pseudo-polygamy without having to rig things back to what helped Elite males have unfair advantage over Elite females. This was a rational reaction as back in the 70's when adultery began to become legalised, the world even in Europe was still overall Patriarchal. It was only beginning to become liberal and Egalitarian.

So, is Con essentially denying that there's egalitarianism here, today? Is Con also denying that in a severely Patriarchal society you can fight against it without outlawing Polygamy?

I get it now, Con is trying to do the first (and will fail after I prove some things) but is actually having a stronger case with the latter. Con is saying that since my resolution says 'the society' and doesn't specify a particularly egalitarian one that inevitably the humans int it will form a many-women-few-rich-men system that brutally stops any hope of egalitarianism and/or liberalism. I would also observe historically that Con has a strong backing there too as I narrated the very story-line Con perhaps was trying to or felt he didn't need to go into. Yet, what case am I making in contradiction to it? Here, let me reiterate:

First, adultery had to be outlawed, then monogamy had to be enforced. If Polyamory was firstly legal, Monogamy being legalised would not only defeat itself in the sense of helping fight Patriarchy but the entire thing would collapse in trying to do what it was designed to... To help elite women become equal in marriage-competing-power to elite men on behalf of powerful dynasties as this evened out bad luck in any particular generation's gender dispersion for the family.

Con would perhaps have us believe that an adultery-outlawed (I am aware Con hasn't explicitly said this part) and monogamy-law-enforced marriage limit and societal arrangement is optimal both psychologically and economically on a moral and feasible-application level. Con argues that what I strive for is either too unrealistic, too amoral to the poor males of society or both or something a little different I can't quite tell. 

If you don't outlaw adultery, the only point of anti-bigamy and anti-polygamy laws in a society that is fairly egalitarian anyway ends up being an incessant craving to 'stick with the old ways'. I guess it's fitting that Con is, I believe, Conservative or at least her (I mean he goes by 'he' in the forums but profile is Female) profile says she is Monarchist. The reason this is fitting is that Conservatives have the saying 'if it aint broke don't fix it' whereas us Progressives, given the name and all, have the mentality 'if it can be improved, consider breaking it as a risk'. This doesn't mean we irrationally break any and all traditions and such but I do believe strongly in the idea that just because something isn't obviously going wrong doesn't mean it's going well, this is a huge misconception based on measuring things vs only that which has happened yet instead of what could happen following logic and possible outcomes. If you're in the best of the three-worst-scenarios of nine scenarios and only those three have happened presently or in history, that doesn't mean the other 6 are not worth looking into or considering. This isn't me waffling, this is extremely central to my case and I hope severely that you as a reader and voter take this entire paragraph to heart as if you don't, Con can easily win on an assumed-logical anti-feasibility attack.

The issue with a society that is legally only allowing monogamous marriage but which legalises adultery, to counteract the irrational restriction of that on people's personal lives and indeed people seeking a 'funkier' life sexually but also romantically, is that it is completely conceding to the idea that over time polyamory is desirable, if not optimal. Think about it for a minute, if society was not moving towards egalitarianism in an economic and societal sense but the elite women still wanted equality to elite men, the only way to achieve it is to keep adultery illegal and monogamy as the only way to marry legally (with prenup being a no-go so that divorce punishes the richer one and this again helps the elite women be the best choice for the elite men to marry so that at least the divorce isn't too damaging overall and the elite woman is the least likely to ask for too much so as not to cause friction between the families). If we start to consider a society without prenups, where adultery is illegal and where women aren't able to get as high ranks in workplaces as men and aren't able to earn as much even for the same job and socially are oppressed and encouraged to aim for mediocrity, then yes monogamy countering polygamy is the first step to egalitarianism. YES, I CONCEDE THIS to CON.

That is not only where the concessions stop, that's literally not even a proper concession. The 'if' statements are fundamental to comprehending why Pro is winning this debate. Con's case revolves around studying severely patriarchal societies (not due to, but regardless of polygamy) that have polygamy legal. Then to study what that does to women in society. The women it hurts the most, if at all, are rich women who are members of powerful families. These women, due to Patriarchy, can only compete by who they marry and how they help their family's males have ties to those family's males. See the issue?

In fact, in the societies (if not all, then most) that Con raised studies in, only polygyny is legal, not only polygyny is practised by only polygyny is legal. Con argues that's just human nature but if we go by human nature, Pro wins the debate by Con's own admission too. Humans being naturally polygynous is not the point of this debate on either side, neither side is arguing that what's natural is what's automatically good. We both agree on aiming for what's optimal but while Con says to do it in spite of what's natural, my core case is to do it working with the nicer parts of what's natural.

Patriarchy is natural but unfair and unfettered Capitalism is brutal to the poor of both genders. Con agrees with me on this and only looked into those societies to make his case. Con says fight our nature to be Patriarchal but has not once supported stopping adultery in any legal way yet says we should legally ban polygamy because it's 'what divorce lawyers find convenient' or something along that line. 

I am going to prove to you now that as societies become egalitarian, they legalise polyamory (which is what adultery is if the culture/country outlaws bigamy and if not, well as I said I don't like adultery but it's optimally necessary to have polyamory in a society that outlaws polygamy unless we want to be complete tyrants on the matter).

I also notice something, Con's case is basically that all rich men are the same fundamentally and applies this same brush-stroke mentality onto others. This is not really proven and a central concept to my polygamous society is that not everyone is built the same at all, be it psychologically, physically and/or intellectually (not the same thing as psychologically). Sure, I will even concede, some people are built for one-on-one relationships where they overlook the flaws of the other and vice versa but this is a rarity, not the norm. It only is the norm because we are told it is... By who? Literally the stories we're told as children and way we're raised, that alone sets in the ideals of monogamy.

The reason that Relationship Anarchy is confused with Polygamy is because by legalising adultery and outlawing bigamy/polygamy you have forced polyamory in the sense that would be achieved via polygamy to be considered the same in value and sincerity as basically cheating or being loveless in one's sexual endeavours. In fact, is there even such a thing as a sexless polyamorous relation? Society as it is today forces that to be called 'best friend' but in my society it's likely such people would marry and form neighbourhoods together as there's actual motive to do so but of course there's no obligation to, you can have a non-married bestie, absolutely so.

Hi, I’m Kale. Today I want to talk about the differences between relationship anarchy and non-hierarchical polyamory.

First, I should give a quick explanation of what hierarchical polyamory is.

Hierarchical Polyamory

Polyamory (or poly for short) is the practice of having multiple, simultaneous, consensual relationships.

Hierarchical poly is when there is a ranking system among sexual relationships. At the top is a person’s primary. Primaries often live together and share resources, make decisions together, spend the most amount of time together.

Secondaries are what they sound like, secondary relationships. A secondary partner will get less time and resources, and often have less say in what their relationship with someone else’s primary looks like.

Sometimes a primary will maintain the right to veto power, which means they can demand their primary partner end a secondary relationship.

Veto power is the ultimate display of holding power over a secondary. It means that the person with veto power can end a relationship they are not even a part of.

It pretty much goes against everything I believe as a relationship anarchist.

Non-Hierarchical Polyamory

Non-hierarchical polyamory grew out of polyamory, as a way to practice multiple simultaneous relationships without imposing hierarchies.

This means that there is no ranking system of primary and secondary. It means no person has extra influence over a person’s relationships. It means there is no veto power.

It means that certain people don’t get more privilege because you live together or have been together longer. All important people get a seat at the table, they get to have a voice.

While non-hierarchical poly people do not have hierarchies within their romantic and sexual relationships, they do still have them in their overall social network.

Relationship Anarchy

Relationship anarchists reject all hierarchies. They reject them in all their social relationships, including their romantic, sexual and platonic relationships.

Part of rejecting social hierarchies means not separating partners from friends. It means not saving intimacy or romance just for people they have sex with.

It also means rejecting hegemony, or predominant influence exercised over another person. It is about living free and independently.

Relationship anarchy came out of a political philosophy, as a way to apply anarchistic principles to interpersonal relationships.

Relationship anarchy is a way to live in accordance with these principles, such as rejection of authority and entitlement, and respect for autonomy and personal choices.

It’s about valuing relationships as you choose to, not based on imposed structures.

It’s not about everything always being equal, it’s about each person following their own path, and coming together based on mutual desires, not duty and obligation.

Relationship anarchists are looking at their relationship dynamics in a totally different way. They are actively working against hetero and mono normativity, and societal structures.

They are building from the ground up, rather than renovating.

This source is not biased in my favour, it's literally written by a pro-anarchist preacher both in relationships and general politics. Look at her Youtube Channel. I do feel she's quite fair and unbiased to the hierarchical alternatives though.

Both Pro and Con are believers in the idea that unfettered polyamory (the anarchic version of relationships) is damaging psychologically and sociologically. We both agree that structured groups are necessary. Pro disagrees altogether with the idea that one person needs to be held as some kind of equal chip to gamble with and be attached to another, especially if we consider that as societies progress they legalise prenups, adultery and women not taking their husband's family-name in marriage all to fight against Patriarchy. I get it, patriarchy happens when 'society' is not really a society at all but tried to become one in the most barbaric way possible; having people brutally fight each other for power. This is something both Con and I agree, is a no-no as the end goal for any society. Do you fight this by outlawing monogamy? The Christian elites thought so. They were not inherently wrong. Since they outlawed adultery, had no real way for women to equal men in output or rank career-wise and had a society that actively rigged itself against women, they came up with a nice patching to a bigger problem that was getting injuries elsewhere that led to legalising adultery among other things.

Humans are naturally polyamorous and yes I do think women have a bigger kink deep down for being owned by a man many other women admire whereas men have a general kink for seeking women that other men desire. This is the basis of why polygyny becames what men fight over and what women allow and enjoy. They don't 'enjoy it' if they're naturally feminist or less feminine than the usual female and feminine men definitely don't enjoy it but those types are killed off generation by generation or so it was thought they would be until people realised that being a feminine man or ambitious feminist is not about inherited hormones alone but open to many variables including to what happens to you int he womb to just raw brain chemistry and personality. This meant a very feminist women could be born from a severely masculine man... why? There's nothing about the brain-side of genes that makes you inherit your own gender of parent's traits more than the other. While physically boys are more likely to have their dad's body structure and girls are more likely to have their mother's, little else than metabolism is really favored by genders. 

Your DNA contains a record of your ancestors, but you aren’t a carbon copy of any one of them. The particular mix of DNA you inherit is unique to you. You receive 50% of your DNA from each of your parents, who received 50% of theirs from each of their parents, and so on.

Even if that 50% is 'unevenly arranged despite the equal amount' than body structure, it's not rigged enough and therefore not relevant enough to this debate for Con to win. 

Women being equal to men means you also should respect that some women like serving one man, this is why even if we have Patriarchy, we end up legalising polyamory as society develops and respects women (as I proved by the societies and timings of them legalising adultery despite outlawing bigamy still today).

It's so obvious to me, that the next step in progression is to legalise polygamy that I'm unsure what really to say at this point. You have achieved a society where marriage means at little as possible, where prenups are well-known I would say and increasingly practised, where egalitarianism is directly proportional to the rate of divorce of the couple and you're telling me, really you're telling me that this archaic outlawing of marriage between more than 2 members is the one thing stopping it all from becoming the opposite of egalitarian? The entire direction and inevitable evolution society as it nurtures and respects the poor and the females in it is clearly moving towards legalising polygamy it's just that the reverse relationship is currently seen due to the detailed set of things I have described in this Round. If this became a pure-feasibility debate against me then so be it. I'm willing to argue that my side is undeniably what should and will happen and Con is free to push me into a corner of admitting that my idea hasn't yet been done and that the opposite of it was the first step in stopping brutal Patriarchy. I explained why the opposite of it was needed and worked and truly, I believe, have won this debate. I am looking forward to Con's reply but if it becomes solely about feasibility, I will be disappointed and in dismay is all.
Thanks, RM.

This debate boils down to who has a more practical vision for society. I'm going to go over my case one last time because I do not think it was responded to at all. 

==My Case==

Please extend my framework as I didn't see a response to it. This debate is about whether or not polygamous marriages should be legally recognized, and RM has to give us some kind of outline for how that society is going to work. So far he has utterly failed to do so, making a Pro vote impossible. 

I. Polygamy is impractical

I apologize in advance to my opponent if I missed any of his responses to this, but I did not see them. How will social security work in a polygamous system? What about child tax credits? What's to prevent gangs from all getting married so they cannot be compelled to testify against each other? A system where polygamous marriages are legally recognized is incredibly ripe for abuse, but I'm not seeing any plan from my opponent about how to make this society work out. He talks about what his ideal utopian society would look like, but unless he presents a credible path to getting there we have no choice but to work with the society that we have--and polygamy would be a total disaster. 

II. Polygamy is Destructive 

RM writes:

Con's essential counter-case in my own words, if I may, is that humans are inherently greedy, Patriarchal and without moral restraint in the face of laws allowing people to do things that they otherwise would so then Con's ultimate case against the resolution is that laws should exist to help us fight our darker nature and/or assist us in stabilising things to achieve the best for all.
Not really. My argument isn't based on any philosophical point at all. All I've done is analyze the effect of marriage within societies and given a theory as to how polygamy would play out. We have real world examples of polygamy to look at, and none of them end in a utopian free love society. The consistent result is that mates are not evenly distributed. Not only is this extreme inequality itself socially cancerous, but it cuts an entire class of people out of the marriage market. I've spoken over and over in this round how incredibly important marriage as an institution is. Please reread and extend these arguments as I have not seen a response to them. 

RM then argues about the history of monogamy, but that simply is not relevant to the debate. If monogamy was forced upon polygamous societies by the sword, that simply hammers home the fact that monogamous societies outcompete polygamous ones. Remember: polygamy is one of the few things that a continent spanning list of failed states had in common. 

This is an incredibly short round, but it doesn't really have to be any longer. RM has utterly failed to rebut my case and his most recent round is almost entirely him complaining about monogamy and its history with little actual analysis.  I honestly do not know what else I can say that hasn't already been said.

My most powerful argument, about how a polygamous society is completely unworkable in a modern welfare state, has been left entirely untouched this entire debate. RM has not explained how polygamy would lead to more marriages, or how polygamous marriages would be equivalent to monogamous ones. Remember: marriage reduces violence against women and political and economic instability. It's an amazing social institution that would be greatly damaged by a polygamous society. Even if you agree with RM in principle, he still has to show us how we get to his ideal society, and he has utterly failed in this regard. 

RM has written a lot about why he doesn't like monogamy or think it's fair, but what's more important in this debate are the things he did not do. He has not shown us how to get to his ideal society. He has not explained how it will work or what it would look like. He has not accounted for the utter failure of polygamous societies past and present. He has barely touched my case. Please vote Con.

Round 4
I will explain that I have won the debate here and now:

If the goal is to make society as egalitarian as possible and as equal between classes not just gender when we do so, the first step being 'monogamy' is only true if adultery is outlawed, prenups are a no-go and if marriage is still very desirable and sacred to the society with no foreseeable way to economically equal the genders. In fact homosexual marriage, too, has to be outlawed like adultery but this is going to be rare in a patriarchal society as such societies are homophobic so I didn't really feel the need to bring this point up before as it's so small a point to raise

Even in that society, where we legalise monogamy to achieve equality between elite women and elite men, the end of the 'snowball towards egalitarianism' always ends up being at a point where marriage itself is as open as possible, prenups are increasingly known and used and adultery is legal (as well as homosexual marriage being allowed). This is all very important because once you have these other factors at play, it then is wrong to still limit marriage to monogamy since we aren't fighting patriarchy anymore, we're encouraging the elite to marry the elite and not share their wealth as well as encouraging everyone to feel they only are to look for one person, which is very suboptimal if you imagine how unlikely it is that one is the type for the other in every way while the other is the reverse to the original person.

^ All these points are raw logic/facts. This is why Con is terrified to directly address them and is simply going to be calling them irrelevant but they aren't, they are so important to understand.

Even if the society still is patriarchal, polygamy turning into monogamy only is useful to help elite women to become equal to elite men. It doesn't actually help middle to lower class people at all, especially not the women who could cling to an elite man as a married-group and serve him in exchange for financial prosperity. 

I don't think I need to say any more, I have made a very solid case in this debate and I truly believe you, the reader must see how undeniable my case is.
Thank you to RM for the debate. I'll be quick in this round and just hit a few critical points, and why I think I won. 

I. RM never showed how polygamy would work 

RM has the burden of proof in this debate to show how his egalitarian polygamous society would work. How we get there, what kind of social structures we have, what the economic system/welfare state is, how we avoid the pitfall of "mate hoarding." He has utterly failed to do so, and only asserts that polygamy in his utopian society would be workable. Perhaps it would, but he didn't how us how and more importantly he didn't show us how we get there. He can't vote Pro when you don't know what it is that you are getting. Most of his arguments were entirely defensive and didn't affirm the resolution at all.

II. My case was completely ignored

Not only did RM fail to meet his own burden, but he didn't address my most powerful arguments at all. What does social security look like in a polygamous system? How do we stop people from engaging in (very obvious) abuses of the system? In a modern welfare state polygamy would be entirely unworkable without serious reforms that RM did not advocate for or explain. More importantly, please extend my arguments about marriage being a uniquely beneficial institution. The India evidence alone outweighs anything RM put forward in this entire debate. When the gender ration changed so that there were 8% more men than women, violence against women increased by 22%. Young, rootless men with nothing to lose are the most dangerous force in the world. Marriage turns them into productive members of society. RM never addressed the obvious: when the highest status men get multiple wives, the lower status men get none at all. I've said over and over again how this is socially cancerous. 

RM sort of attacks this by saying that in his ideal society everyone would love everyone but, again, he never explained how we got there. Historically this is not what we see in polygamous societies. 

This is a short round but there really is not much else to say. Please vote Con.