Wednesday, September 15, 2010
The new gay?
I've been seeing a lot of articles lately that theorize Polyamory is the "new gay". That is to say, Polyamory is trending upward at a fast rate, discrimination is becoming more widespread, and more poly people are demanding rights.
A fair amount of the buzz seems tied to a new book, "Sex At Dawn: The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality" by Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha. I haven't read their book personally but understand it examines human sexuality and postulates that humans have needed and sought sexual variety since their beginnings. An interesting idea since many arguments against modern sexuality proclaim that it is evolution which has led to such behavior. An argument which would seem to also disprove that human disposition toward sexual variety is rooted in our origins. Either evolution has been stagnant with respect to sexuality and things like polyamory have been around forever, or they were never part of humans originally but rather a result of evolution. I don’t think it can be both. But again, I haven't read the book so I'm really not trying to start a debate about it. I do however find it amusing some think a single book will be the catalyst for a sexual revolution. Does that mean "The Ethical Slut", commonly believed to be the "Poly Bible", is about to be burned at the stake?
This article takes a deeper look at the book if you are interested:
New Zealand Listener (http://www.listener.co.nz/issue/3665/features/15907/sex_at_dawn.html)
Unless you are under a rock lately you have probably also heard about the court case in B.C. over Sec. 293 of the Criminal Code which many think could be a catalyst for change. Essentially Sec. 293 is the anti-polygamy section of the law that was recently tested by the attempted prosecution of two men from the Bountiful B.C. FLDS group. The Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association (CPAA) has joined the suit over concerns that the current law could be applied to polyamorists despite current understanding that it applies to polygamists. Several articles have been written that conclude polyamorists are looking to have polyamory legalized or feel they are above the law. In reality all that has happened so far is the CPAA attorney has asked the B.C. court to clarify if Sec. 293 applies to polyamorists or not. They have not asked for changes to B.C. law specifically legitimizing polyamory or even specifically excluding it, though it does appear they will ask for exclusion. Those misunderstandings and bloating of the facts seem to have led many others to conclude polyamorists are poised and pushing for a sexual revolution.
Here are a couple of interesting related articles:
The Vancouver Sun (http://www.vancouversun.com/life/Polyamorists+want+court+declare+group+love+legal/3499029/story.html )
And then there is Mr. Patrick Fagan who purports that Polyamory has come much further than is commonly believed. According to Fagan the Polyamory "movement" is so well defined, organized, connected, and powerful, that they are actually guiding public school policy and controlling childhood education, sex education, and youth health programs in an effort to ensure sustained polyamory in the future. Were it not inappropriate to repeat "LOL" or "::laughing::" to the nth power in a written article I would be doing so right now. Instead, here is a link to the article so you can go read it and have a chuckle yourself:
Is polyamory "The New Gay"? Being someone who wasn't (and isn't) strongly involved in the gay rights movement I have a hard time knowing if Polyamory is following the same path or not. What I do know is that most of the poly folk I talk to don't seem to be activists. Some have strong political opinions and will even stand up for their rights when it comes to sexuality, preserving nature, abortion and such but that is no different than monogamous folks. But most feel their right to practice polyamory isn't being directly impeded nor do they have any interest in converting other folks. Most have a "Live and let live" type attitude.
What do you think? Is Polyamory "The New Gay"? Is it the next sexual revolution?