Marriages and Unions

November 6th, 2013 at 7:00 am by David Farrar

Stats NZ reported marriage and civil union data.

Since began in 2005, the totals have been:

  • 1,449 female couples (45%)
  • 1,092 male couples (34%)
  • 657 male-female couples (21%)

For marriage the data for the last quarter is:

  • 61 female couples (2.2%)
  • 56 male couples (2.0%)
  • 2,681 male-female couples (95.8%)

However same sex marriages were only available for just under half the quarter.

The total number of same sex marriages and unions in the quarter was 139 and the total number of marriages and unions was 2,831. That means 4.9% of unions and marriages were of same sex couples. Now that was for only half a quarter but one would also expect an initial flurry. U guess we won’t know for a few more quarters what the long-term marriage rates will be for each. It would be interesting to find out if over time there was a greater or smaller marriage rate among same sex couples and heterosexual couples. But that is hard to calculate without know the population size for each group/

 

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105 Responses to “Marriages and Unions”

  1. duggledog (1,625 comments) says:

    Out of the male couples, how many are still together, and how many have been unfaithful. Homosexual men are notoriously promiscuous which is why I don’t support them being allowed to adopt. What a way to grow up.

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  2. Akaroa (613 comments) says:

    Same-sex ‘marriages’?

    ‘Marriages’?

    Forgive my hollow mirth!

    And also forgive my disgust at the use of a term – ‘marriage’ – that lumps my own normal boy-girl marriage of fifty plus years with the perverted couplings of sad individuals embracing “man-man love”.

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  3. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I would think the first quarter would be statistically unhelpful as there would be a rush on newly available gay marriages. By the same token, I would think the next quarter would be similarly unhelpful because there will be a lull after the initial rush.

    Reliable estimates of the openly gay population are usually put between 1%< and 3%<. It is a very small minority. Surveys show that people consistently overestimate the number of actual gay people – and young people and women are the worst judges of all.

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  4. eszett (2,450 comments) says:

    Out of the male couples, how many are still together, and how many have been unfaithful. Homosexual men are notoriously promiscuous which is why I don’t support them being allowed to adopt. What a way to grow up.

    Let me see, Len Brown was unfaithful, Cameron Slater was unfaithful, Don Brash was unfaithful, Luigi Wewege looks like he was pretty promiscuous, Beraiah Hales and Joseph Parker too it seems.

    But it’s only gay men you are worried about.

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  5. duggledog (1,625 comments) says:

    No it’s the kids I’d have concerns for can’t you read? At least Len was using the Ngati Whatua room not the Herne Bay toilets.

    If they could, hetero males would have a different partner every day. As the guy said in Sleepless in Seattle, ‘pretty much all of them’.

    Now apply that to a gay man. I couldn’t care less but I don’t think it’s ideal for a kid to grow up with a thousand ‘uncles’

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  6. Longknives (4,956 comments) says:

    But we all know what loving,caring fathers the members of our beloved ‘Rainbow Community’ make-

    http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2013/s3794616.htm

    Heterosexual marriage is so ‘last century’…

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  7. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @eszet thanks, your scientific survey of six handpicked examples has convinced me that heterosexual men are more promiscuous than gay men.

    Someone should tell noted homophobes Andrew Sullivan and Dan Savage.

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  8. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    The number of people who engage solely in homosexual conduct is widely overestimated – deliberately of course. A British survey, Sexual Behaviour In Britain, by Wellings, Field, Johnson & Wadsworth was conducted using a 20000 member sample of the British demographic – one of the largest studies undertaken. It found that core homosexual behaviour was limited to 0.6% in men and a staggeringly low 0.1% in women.

    The vast majority of people professing to be “gay”, the study concluded, are merely uninhibited bisexuals when push comes to shove. (Alison Mau, Elton John for example)

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  9. F E Smith (3,307 comments) says:

    According to Bob McCroskie’s blog, which you link to, as of 5 November roughly a third of those marriages were of people not domiciled in NZ.  So the number of same sex marriages of NZers was about 4% of marriages.

    I am still bemused as to how a matter affecting 2% of the population could have been described as an important matter of human rights.  Oh well, now to campaign for the rights of the poly-amorous to marry more than one person at the same time; after all, if it is vital for 2%, surely it is just as vital for .25%?

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  10. Dennis Horne (2,403 comments) says:

    In this case, Numbers = Nonsense.

    In an ideal society men and women mate, stay together and work to look after any offspring. The word we use to describe this is “marriage”.

    Homosexuals don’t want to be married, they want us to think and feel buggery is the same as copulation. It isn’t at any level, biologically, socially, politically, historically, and that’s all there is about it.

    Marriage should be an ideal, a “prize”. That prize has now been cheapened. Marriage is now just a comforting word for people who “love” each other.

    Cats and dogs next.

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  11. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    If they could, hetero males would have a different partner every day.

    Can you back that up by anything more substantial than a quote from a movie?

    I have no wish or desire to have more than one partner. I prefer and am committed to a monogamous relationship.

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  12. nasska (12,101 comments) says:

    Wait until the people realise that gay marriage is compulsory…..then we’ll see a spike in the statistics. :)

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  13. duggledog (1,625 comments) says:

    I could back that up with stats (that rely on a participant’s honesty) Pete George but instead this time I use life experience. Gay mates, flatting with gay guys, friends who have had gay dads.

    The line from the movie was better than a statistic. It was a famous line, oft quoted, because everyone knew it to be true.

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  14. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    But we all know what loving,caring fathers the members of our beloved ‘Rainbow Community’ make-

    Interestingly enough, psychologist Judith Reisman – the woman whose investigations revealed what a true pervert “sexologist” Alfred Kinsey was, researched the leading gay travel guide “Sparticus” and discovered that forty seven percent of the 139 destinations referred to, identified places to find boys, including ages of consent for sex as well as the best locations, parks, streets, plazas where men might obtain younger boys for random encounters.

    Unsurprisingly, mainstream travel guides are not concerned finding ways for gay travelers to trawl for illicit sex with boys.

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  15. Dennis Horne (2,403 comments) says:

    Pete George (19,414) Says: November 6th, 2013 at 7:59 am
    I have no wish or desire to have more than one partner. I prefer and am committed to a monogamous relationship.

    Honestly? That explains a great deal about you, Pete. Is it age or have you always been like that?

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  16. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @FE Smith, it makes sense from a democratic perspective when you realise that people do overestimate the gay population. That 25% figure – that is the percentage of people the average American adult thinks is gay according to Gallup. That’s what adults believe despite the actual evidence of the low prevalence being present in their everyday lives. Women and young people estimate even higher percentages.

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  17. graham (2,348 comments) says:

    That’s a bit of a cheap shot, Dennis (at 8:07 am). What’s wrong with actually showing some commitment to your partner and being faithful to him or her?

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  18. Kleva Kiwi (290 comments) says:

    Its closer to 2.5%
    You cannot count the civil union to marriages in both columns

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  19. Dennis Horne (2,403 comments) says:

    @Graham. I have been married for >40 years and have remained absolutely physically faithful. I would be lying if I claimed that was my personal preference, but fidelity was very important to my wife and my family was very important to me.

    Indeed, it’s the sacrifice most men make or try to make that makes the concept of marriage so important, in my opinion.

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  20. Manolo (14,169 comments) says:

    KiwiGayBlog continues its promotion campaign.

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  21. Ashley Schaeffer (535 comments) says:

    I predict the number of same-sex marriages will fall off dramatically over time because I don’t accept that the campaign was ever about homosexuals wanting to get married. This whole campaign has been about normalising homosexuality and undermining one of the core pillars of Western civilisation, the traditional concept of marriage as practiced in the West.

    Now that this battle has been won, the homosexual lobbyists (and useful idiots) will move onto the next goal set for them by the Left while rank and file homosexuals continue to live the life they choose without burdening themselves trying to live up to the ideals of a heterosexual institution.

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  22. Scott Chris (6,178 comments) says:

    According to a Williams Institute review conducted in April 2011, approximately 3.8% of American adults identify themselves either as lesbian or gay.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_demographics_of_the_United_States

    And if you happen to dispute the validity of this estimate, pray do tell us why the source of your estimate would be any more reliable.

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  23. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Dennis Horne, maybe you should be more circumspect in your faux bravado. You claim to respect your wife yet openly post on the internet – presumably under your actual name – that if you could get away with it you would have sex with as many different women as possible. How would that make her feel to read that?

    We all have libidos but it’s the mark of a pretty ill-disciplined man if you can’t keep it – or your motormouth – in check.
    .

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  24. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @Scott Chris – how conversant are you with the data and methodology of the study? Did it closely control for demographics? Major cities vs minor cities vs rural? White, black, asian, hispanic? Presumably you can answer all those questions instantly because you’ve just brandished as if it was the only survey conducted in the area and is therefore the word of God on the matter.

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  25. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    Dennis Horne – I have always valued faithfulness both outside and within marriage. Promiscuity gets a lot more attention but I think being committed to a single partner will be important to many people – I don’t know if it will be a silent majority or not but I’d guess that many see the advantage of having a long term trusting relationship.

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  26. tspoon765 (14 comments) says:

    Gay males are very promiscuous, the amount of gay male relationships able to span the 18 year time period in which to raise a child in a stable environment is around 5%, as compared to around 60% for conventional heterosexual marriages. Children raised by gay or lesbian parents also fare less well than those raised in conventional arrangements in almost every metric. Having said that, this is nothing as compared to the massive amount of children seriously damaged by the modern love affair with the concept of single mothers. In fact, once the interests of the child have been wholly discounted in favour of other, clearly more important factors, it becomes a matter of equal opportunity fairness to allow other parties their chance to ride roughshod over the hopes of the powerless on their way to ‘happiness’, or whatever it was they thought they would achieve. And, like single mothers, they also reserve the right to become apoplectical at any and all whom would question what they do.

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  27. Scott Chris (6,178 comments) says:

    how conversant are you with the data and methodology of the study

    Feel free to direct me to a more reliable study.

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  28. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Chastity isn’t a biological impulse. It’s about respect for your spouse and the fact that coitus, being such an intimate thing, involves a high level of vulnerability. It’s an abuse of that vulnerability to betray that idea in thought, words or deeds (though none of us, me least of all, is perfect).

    I can see why knee-jerk atheism might take you down that reductive route, though, as it forces you to find amoral rationalisations of human decency.

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  29. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    @Scott Chris – make me. You’re the one who just posted it like you were Moses coming down from Mount Sinai. He who alleges must prove.

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  30. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Wow, so straight people don’t get STIs, the profession of venereology doesn’t exist, Family Planning or STI clinics don’t treat them, straight men aren’t too lazy to wear condoms and there’s no such thing as straight unplanned pregnancies? At least every child born into an enduring and responsible same-sex relationship is the result of deliberation and careful and responsible preparation before hand. What about feckless and irresponsible straights?

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  31. dubya (245 comments) says:

    “my own normal boy-girl marriage of fifty plus years”

    Pretty sure child marriage is a bit perverted too, old man.

    Personally, I think they should have just repealed the marriage act, allowed anyone who wants one a civil union, thus, pissed off the fundies and the gay rights activists in one fell swoop.

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  32. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    I can see why knee-jerk atheism might take you down that reductive route, though, as it forces you to find amoral rationalisations of human decency.

    It doesn’t force you to find anything. In a way it simplifies a relationship (of both partners are atheist) because there is no religion or god issues to complicate it. You can simply be true to and trusting of each other without anything else being involved. Dictated by no one and nothing it is a genuine one to one relationship.

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  33. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    ChardonnayGuy – what on earth are you going on about?

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  34. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Peter George – please see the qualifying words “might” and “knee-jerk”.

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  35. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    I don’t know what you mean by “knee-jerk atheism”.

    I think most atheists either consider whether god stuff makes sense or not and decide that it doesn’t, or simply never consider theism as an option.

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  36. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Peter George – maybe if you don’t know what a term means you should seek clarification of what’s meant instead of just prattling on in your irksome manner.

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  37. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Merely that numerous heterosexuals are as sexually irresponsible and non-monogamous as some posters have alleged “all” lesbians and gay men are. As a matter of fact, there’s actually a continuum of numbers of sexual partners. HIV/AIDS slowed down the sexual fast lane lifestyle for many gay men, as well as the opening up of partnership recognition like civil unions and marriage equality, and that accusation also doesn’t allow for age- older gay men end up slowing down and settling down. And citing discredited “social scientists” like Judith Reisman, originator of the imaginary Children of Table 24 and the equally weird and wonderful “erototoxins” (oh, so now she’s a ‘neuroscientist’ instead of a quack who got a ‘doctorate’ from a US fundamentalist ‘university’ set up by a televangelist?) doesn’t impress me, incidentally.

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  38. Scott Chris (6,178 comments) says:

    Cato, I didn’t assert anything.

    But you did:

    it makes sense from a democratic perspective when you realise that people do overestimate the gay population

    Care to substantiate that claim?

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  39. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    ChardonnayGuy – I don’t know if you know this, but you sound quite unhinged. I realise this is a subject that gets you quite excitable but what you’ve written is quite hard to read.

    Let’s reason together. Do you think gay men are, in the mean, have more or fewer or the same number of sexual partners as heterosexual men?

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  40. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Here ya go mate: http://www.gallup.com/poll/147824/adults-estimate-americans-gay-lesbian.aspx

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  41. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    Cato – you could just clarify what you meant, otherwise it may look like you are avoiding explaining it. As you wrote it it can be seen as a general diss of atheism or as a reference to a certain type of atheist.

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  42. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Really? I would have thought that my point was quite plain, Cato. Surely, as a conservative Catholic, you equally find the spread of heterosexual “promiscuity,” STIs, unwanted pregnancies and abortions equally objectionable? I would refer you to a fellow conservative Catholic, Josef Budziszewski, who acknowledges that straight “promiscuity” presents similar ontological challenges for conservative Catholics. As for the opinion poll you’ve cited (as opposed to an epidemiological measurement), also note the word “estimate” in the URL?

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  43. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    With pleasure. I would have thought it obvious that a knee-jerk atheist is somebody who instinctively reaches out for a biological or materialist explanation for everything and every human behaviour. For example, your justification for chastity does not fall into that category because it was a waffly, content-free observation of the type that so endeared you to the good burghers of Dunedin. DH’s comment, on the other hand, that chastity only makes sense in the context of child rearing did fall into that category.

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  44. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Yeah – that was a source for my earlier comment that people consistently overestimate the prevalence of homosexuality.

    I certainly agree it’s a problem. A serious one. If DPF ever does a post centred on heterosexual marriage I promise to deplore it.

    My view is that there are inherent differences between men and women. Those differences are rooted in biology but mannifest themselves in different propensities to different behaviours. Men are more prone to promiscuity. Traditional marriage reduces promiscuity – not because it’s some sort of public declaration of love, but because it binds a man and a woman together in what’s supposed to be a permanent relationship.

    I don’t believe that marriage civilises men. Women do. Traditional marriage is just the conduit. A long term de facto relationship will have the same effect if it’s otherwise in the nature of marriage.

    Gay marriage does not reconcille the sexes in this way. I don’t think gay men are evil – not in the least. But I do think they are men. It’s surely no coincidence that, while (in the mean) gay couples are more open to promiscuity, lesbian couples are supposedly for faithful to one another.

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  45. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    F E Smith (2,901) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 7:57 am

    I am still bemused as to how a matter affecting 2% of the population could have been described as an important matter of human rights.

    What is the threshold where the human rights of people are “important”? 5%? 10%?

    If one criminal defendant is subject to a miscarriage of justice is it not an important matter of his human rights as he is just one person?

    Oh well, now to campaign for the rights of the poly-amorous to marry more than one person at the same time; after all, if it is vital for 2%, surely it is just as vital for .25%?

    I wouldn’t object.

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  46. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Weihana – thanks for being honest. Once you grant the assumption that the state’s only interest in marriage is the validation of loving relationships, all else follows.

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  47. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    No, Cato, that’s not an “explanation,” it is ad hominem abuse. And “chastity” in the context of “child rearing?!” Surely you mean prudent monogamous marital sex. Sorry, but not all of us are bound by quaint Aristotelian and Thomistic nostrums from prescientific, premodern twelfth century medieval European sources about human sexual behaviour. Oh, they have their place in academic philosophy and medieval history and politics courses, but as an actual guide to public policy? Please. Moreover, one objection to this palpably religious sectarian “natural law” model of sexual and social repression is that the imposition of particular sectarian religious policy is an attack on democratic pluralism and faith/state separation. After all, we don’t compel or permit people to refuse blood transfusions, handle poisonous reptiles during worship services, consume recreational drugs or engage in animal sacrifice in the context of religious practise, in the name of hyperbolic “religious liberty”- yet all of the above occur within the United States.

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  48. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    Cato, your explanation doesn’t make sense. ‘Knee-jerk’ seems to be a derogatory term relating to an unthinking reaction whereas ‘instinctively reaches out for a biological or materialist explanation’ suggests one is thinking about an explanation.

    I didn’t justify chastity, I just said that it is what I prefer and am committed to. It has nothing to do with atheism or kids or marriage, I prefer a single long term partner – and don’t feel any need to justify that.

    Can you justify your repeated snarkiness? You seem to have an instinctive habit of sneering at people you disagree with.

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  49. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Ah, so FE Smith also therefore must believe that small religious and ethnic minorities should be similarly exposed to discrimination, harassment and other practises on the basis that they have small numerical populations? And incidentally, according to the census, there are more Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims than some smaller conservative Christian denominations these days, and Christian religious observance overall is plummeting, probably as a result of higher public educational achievement and distaste at the radical militancy of the statist “Christian Right.”

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  50. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    By chastity I simply mean the moderation of sexual appetites, which includes fidelity to one’s spouse.

    Why do you need to attack natural law theory like that? Are you a positive? Does might really make right?

    And how is that not an explanation? I can understand why you feel you need to rant like that, but you’ve obviously got a good brain. Why not slow down and reason? Do you think gay men are, in the mean, have more or fewer or the same number of sexual partners as heterosexual men? What implications does that have for marriage?

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  51. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Hey Peter George – instead of carrying on this asinine back-and-forth that proves nothing except that you will grab onto any semantic fig leaf to save face – can you please just google “define: instinctively” and then pipe down?

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  52. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Here’s a quote from a recent article of mine about why polyamorist spousal rights are unlikely to be on the political agenda in the intermediate term:

    Apart from media monitoring organisations, there are no polyamorist rights groups that want immediate legislative reform to encompass ethical non-monogamy. As we are ourselves aware from our recent experience dealing with monogamous same-sex marriage equality and inclusive adoption reform, it takes considerable time to achieve legislative reform due to the time that it takes to secure funding and carry out duly rigorous research for the purpose of evidence-based medical and social scientific proofs for such claims to be made. Given that not even Canada, the Netherlands and Scandinavia have fully-fledged polyamorist spousal rights movements or lobby groups as yet, and they attained marriage and same-sex parenting equality several years before we did, I estimate that if this ever happened, it would be ten to fifteen years or so away at the minimum.
    What does the research currently say? There isn’t much of it. In Atlanta, Elisabeth Sheff, a sociologist, has studied polyamorous families in detail since the nineties. Within polyamorous relationships, female participants share sexual power more equally with men – because women value interpersonal relationships and emotional contact with their sexual partners, and find new ones more easily, which gives them leverage within their relationships.
    In 2011, Canadian Simon Fraser sociologist Melissa Mitchell carried out an Internet survey of 1,100 polyamorists – the largest academic survey of polyamorists to date. She found that most polyamorist individuals (64 per cent) have two partners. Sixty one per cent of the women identified their two closest partners as both men and eighty six per cent of men identified their two closest partners as both women.
    Most of the women in the sample identified as bisexual (at sixty-eight per cent), while bisexual men were less frequent (only thirty nine per cent) and exclusive lesbians or gay men were rare (only four percent identified as lesbians and three percent identified as gay men).
    Polyamorists spend more time with and feel more committed to their primary partners than their secondary partners, according to Sheff’s survey. However, they may also find that secondary partners are more amenable to their sexual needs. Seventy per cent of the sample live with their primary partner and forty-seven per cent are married to them. The average relationship duration was nine years for primary partners and three years for secondary partners.
    The Canadian survey is self-selected, so it cannot provide a representative sample, but Sheff says the Simon Fraser University results line up with those of other studies, such as seventy-one focus group interviews that she made with Midwestern and Californian polyamorists over a thirteen year period (1996-2009). Sheff also notes that despite the importance of feminism to polyamorists, it’s not unusual for straight men to become involved because they believe that it will lead to “easy sex” or sex with more than one woman. However, straight or bisexual male swingers tend to have a difficult time meeting the emotional demands of polyamory and are either turned off – or ostracised – by polyfidelity as a social norm within polyamorous relationships. In polyamorist relationships, common monogamous spousal dilemmas can result in particularly thorny dilemmas for participants, particularly if the community norm of polyfidelity has been implied to be infringed.
    According to a 2011 polyamorist literature survey by Sheff and Corie Hammers, racial and class data on polyamorists and related groups was compiled from thirty six independent studies, and confirmed that sexual minorities largely consist of upper-middle-class Caucasians. Sheff concludes that lower socio-economic class individuals and people of colour cannot usually afford to take the risks associated with defying social norms, which could lead to employment, accomodation, parental or other forms of discrimination against polyamorists, given that legal protection is particularly scarce for polyamorists. This provides community participation advantages for those with the financial resources to hire legal assistance. However, it also reduces the potential scale of mass mobilisation in the context of any polyamorist spousal rights social movement.
    Authors of polyamorist self-help literature view it as a “choice” that is reliant on ethical conviction, hard relationship maintenance work and personal endurance, rather than security conferred through relative affluence. Sheff notes that polyamorists don’t tend to discuss class or ethnicity within their ethical debates about their relationship option. Some individuals and families may participate covertly within non-monogamous relationships, but refuse to consider “coming out” and adopting an identity that could lead to further stigmatisation or experiences of discrimination. This is one of the reasons it is hard to estimate the scale of polyamorous social networks or communities– researchers are unsure about “closetry” in this contest.”

    Jeff Fraser: “Polyamory: Three or Four or Five’s Company” Globe and Mail: 22.09.2012: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/polyamory-threes-or-fours-or-fives-company/article4560587/service=mobile

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  53. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    Cato (844) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 9:42 am

    Weihana – thanks for being honest. Once you grant the assumption that the state’s only interest in marriage is the validation of loving relationships, all else follows.

    The state has other interests, such as the welfare and best interests of children, but these interests are irrelevant to whether or not people are married. A child’s welfare is not safeguarded simply because their parents are married, and if a child’s parents are not married it does not mean the child’s welfare is not a relevant interest to the state.

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  54. simo (130 comments) says:

    This country is infested with minorities who have, apart from wanting to be “new” and “cool” will blaze a trail of destruction into oblivion. There are ethnic groups in this country who see opportunity to expand and grow their population base to fill the void of childless Caucasian homosexual couples who are not reproducing due to obvious reasons. The pendulum must realign at some stage either some major event will do this or as an ethnic group they will be overrun by the ethnic groups that are reproducing in the way the Caucasian couples did back in the 50’s.

    It is definitely in our lifetimes that this will happen. What citizens in this country don’t realise is that these minorities through the exploitation of MMP and political correctness, are evolving our own downfall and for our children through their own “me” selfishness. We are over self actualised idiots thinking they have the vision to ensure continuity of our families and the future of our children.

    The glaring “flashing neon sign” evidence is plain to see from the Labour Party conference.

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  55. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Woah – ChardonnayGuy do you think you could have just linked that? That must be at least 700 words. Can you be more concise?

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  56. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Weihana – so … you agree with my characterisation?

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  57. Kea (13,571 comments) says:

    I can see why knee-jerk atheism

    Atheism is not a position or a statement. It is the default position.

    Why are you not a Hindu, or a follower of one of the many thousands of other Gods ? Relgion is a learned behaviour and the fact you may be Christian is nothing more than an accident of birth. Had you been born in Saudi Arabia you would be Muslim. You are an atheist about every God except one.

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  58. Kea (13,571 comments) says:

    Homosexuals don’t want to be married, they want us to think and feel buggery is the same as copulation.

    Those crafty poofters trying to trick us into buggery ? LOL :)

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  59. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Actually, Kea, agnostism is the default position. ‘I’m not convinced God exists” isn’t a positive statement that requires validation. ‘I am convinced that God does not exist” is as much a positive assertion as “I am convinced that God does exist.”

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  60. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    Agnostism is not the default position. If someone grew up in isolation of any beliefs they would not even know of the concept of theism or gods.

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  61. Longknives (4,956 comments) says:

    Atheism? Agnostism?
    I thought this was a thread about Homosexuals pretending to get married?

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  62. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    What a strange thing to say. Presumably animals don’t believe in God and men were once animals. How on earth did religious belief arise basically everywhere where there have been humans.

    And besides, as a logical proposition claiming not to have knowledge (literally “without knowledge”) is the default position. Anyone who claims any positive belief has the burden of discharging an onus of proof. Atheism of the type that buffoon Kea espouses is a positive belief (and, if it’s not, it’s really agnostism).

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  63. Manolo (14,169 comments) says:

    I thought this was a thread about Homosexuals pretending to get married?

    Yes. And a clever campaign by GayKiwiBlog to promote pink-power and all things homosexual.

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  64. RRM (10,099 comments) says:

    Only this morning I saw a dog with two heads; surly an omen of our impending damnation.

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  65. Akaroa (613 comments) says:

    (Dubya at 9.00 am posted, inter alia:

    ……..Pretty sure child marriage is a bit perverted too, old man…).

    Can’t let that slur pass without responding, Dubya, me ol’ pal, me ol’ beauty!!

    Try this for size.

    My date of birth: 1935. Wife’s date of birth: 1935. Date of marriage: Sept 1954. Ages of each party: 19 yrs

    You were saying?

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  66. SGA (1,257 comments) says:

    RRM at 10:24 am

    Only this morning I saw a dog with two heads; surly an omen of our impending damnation.

    RRM, that was actually two dogs (you should have counted the legs). When you’re old enough I’ll explain what they were doing :-)

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  67. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    Cato (845) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 9:38 am

    I don’t believe that marriage civilises men. Women do. Traditional marriage is just the conduit. A long term de facto relationship will have the same effect if it’s otherwise in the nature of marriage.

    Clearly this is not true in many cases, but assuming there is nevertheless this tendency (which I agree with), in what way does recognizing gay relationships change this? You just acknowledged that long term de facto relationships achieve the same outcome, thus demonstrating that what counts are the facts, not what is written on a piece of paper.

    Marriage is not a “conduit” it is merely a representation of what exists independent of that ceremony.

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  68. Harriet (5,200 comments) says:

    Marriage is all about happiness.

    Homosexual ‘marriage’ is about pleasure. Edit: And leisure.

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  69. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    How on earth did religious belief arise basically everywhere where there have been humans.

    They have been communicated and travelled with human migrations. A ‘belief’ would not have just arisen. Beliefs, plural, a wide range of beliefs over a long period pf time. Those beliefs have evolved in a variety of ways in different populations.

    There is still a wide variety of religious beliefs and non-beliefs.

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  70. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ Harriet (2,899) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 10:33 am

    So you have experienced both and can then make an informed statement ?

    You are wrong. Heterosexual marriages are not necessarily about ‘happiness’, unless you regard sexual gratification as the only form of happiness, in which case it negates your statement about homosexual marriage. Many people have married because of pregnancy, just to find out that further along there is no happiness found in anything but previous sexual relations. If your statement was true, there would not have been any divorce.

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  71. Scott Chris (6,178 comments) says:

    Here ya go mate

    Thanks Cato – so to throw your own question back at you:

    how conversant are you with the data and methodology of the study? Did it closely control for demographics? Major cities vs minor cities vs rural? White, black, asian, hispanic?

    And more importantly, how relevant is this study to New Zealand? After all, plenty of Americans seem to think that the earth was conjured up 6000 years ago.

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  72. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ Pete George (19,422) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 10:37 am

    Religious belief, like many other forms of ‘beliefs’ e.g. the occult, arose from the need for people to make ‘sense’ of what they were experiencing. For example death. As an example people dreamed of their dead loved ones, and not understanding what dreams were, decided that the dead must be living somewhere – hence the concept of life after death emerged, and later used as a means of social control.

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  73. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    I’m inclined to agree with Weihana on this one. Marriage is an anthropological phenomenon, as are its particular attendant wedding rituals and ceremonies in given societies. It’s quaint that religious social conservatives seem to think that merely because most LGBT New Zealanders are post-Christian (post-Muslim/post-Hindu/etc) and that ironically enough, we respect their religious freedom enough to steer around antigay religious groups, and therefore have secular civil marriages, this somehow renders them ‘inferior’ to religious marriages.

    Hell, my sister had a church wedding and divorced her ratbag of an Aussie husband and he shamefully neglects my disabled nephew in terms of child support payments and visitation. So did all four of my dad and paternal uncles and aunts- and Mum and Dad are the only ones still together, fifty eight years later.

    Harriut: So hot monogamous sex with one’s spouse isn’t part of marriage? Hey, that might explain why so many fundies get divorced :)

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  74. Harriet (5,200 comments) says:

    You’re being silly again Judith.

    BTW: If you don’t like murder in society – then don’t support women who kill.

    You social revolutionaries protested and demanded everything you wanted. You’ve got that, and left nothing secure for the next generations to build upon.

    Your ideals are then nothing more than immature, selfish hedonism. That will end in disater.

    Like I said. Gay Marriage is about pleasure and not happiness! Gays are being very immature. :cool:

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  75. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    I would say the default position is “without knowledge”. But logical arguments can nevertheless be made in support of things that are not known absolutely. For instance, is there a tea pot orbiting between Earth and Mars? I don’t know is the default position. But if one considers what one knows about tea pots, what one knows about the solar system and how it formed, one can reasonably infer that the likelihood of a tea pot orbiting between Earth and Mars is vanishingly small.

    The same can be done with God or Gods. I don’t know is the default position. But if one were to assess any specific claim, such as the Christian God, one could invoke one’s knowledge of evolution, geology, cosmology, physics, history etc. and come to the conclusion that the likelihood of this God existing is also vanishingly small.

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  76. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ Harriet (2,900) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 10:43 am

    What a load a shyte Harriet.

    Explain the divorce rate if heterosexual marriage is about ‘happiness’?

    Pleasure and happiness are one and the same, unless you are qualifying it by saying it is sexual pleasure, in which case you are also wrong. You can’t win this one Harriet, the statistic are against you. Commonsense is against (and I realise commonsense has little to do with religion). Until you can explain the divorce rate, you don’t have an argument.

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  77. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ weihana

    I suspect the default setting is ignorance. A newborn seeks pleasure through nurturing. One could argue that the seeking of pleasure is also a default setting.

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  78. Harriet (5,200 comments) says:

    “….Explain the divorce rate if heterosexual marriage is about ‘happiness’?…”

    Hedonism.

    People place their pleasure above the happiness of their children – and therefor themselves. Oh yes….their is a few women who are bashed – but nothing like the divorce rate! :cool:

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  79. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

    @ Harriet (2,901) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 10:51 am

    You can’t win Harriet. “People who place their pleasure above the happiness of their children”

    How do you explain people who divorce violent and abusive partners because of the damage it is doing to the children? I know of many people who have separated, not because they no longer love the other, or are in danger themselves, but because of what the destructive relationship is doing to the children who have become the target of the other parent’s violence and abuse.

    You either live in a bubble, or don’t get out and witness the real world Harriet.

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  80. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    Well, Judith, Harriut does live in Queensland, and that place is noted for its unreal nature by the rest of Oz. How else can you explain Joh Bjelke-Petersen’s interminable reign…

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  81. Harriet (5,200 comments) says:

    Oh yes….their is a few women who are bashed – but nothing like the divorce rate!

    Like I said – your’re being silly again Judith.

    Capitalists and feminists are nothing more than the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact.

    Capitalists give feminists what they want – equality with males where the wage structure is ever decreasing!

    Like I said Judith:

    you revolutionaries are leaving nothing for the next generation to build upon.

    You’ve dismatled everything and constructed nothing. :cool:

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  82. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    Judith (4,260) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 10:50 am

    @ weihana

    I suspect the default setting is ignorance.

    I suppose the more interesting question is how do we acquire knowledge in the first place? As with the Tea Pot and the Christian God, I assumed some prior knowledge (e.g. knowledge of Tea Pots, or knowledge of Cosmology). But how do we go from knowing nothing to knowing anything?

    Arguably our knowledge is derived from the integration of all our experiences to organize correlates into a conceptual hierarchy. Fundamentally we experience our senses. I feel my hand through the nerves in my hand. I see my hand through me eyes. Eventually I correlate those senses to form the concept of a hand. But arguably my knowledge of my own hand is not absolute, the concept is merely the repeated correlation of sensory input though in actuality what I think is my hand could be nothing more than a computer inputing those senses as part of some simulation. So even the most basic things we know are really just very probably true, rather than necessarily absolutely true.

    It is interesting that IBM’s Watson thinks in a similar way by correlating information that is fed to it to be able to answer questions on Jeopardy. But people say it doesn’t really “understand”. Perhaps that’s just a reflection of its limited computing power rather than being unable to think like we do.

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  83. Fletch (6,528 comments) says:

    Atheism is not a position or a statement. It is the default position.

    And yet, most people in the world are religious. Wouldn’t that make having religion the “default”?

    According to the CIA website, there are approx 7 billion people in the world –

    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/xx.html
    (Click on the [+] People and Society link)

    According to the same site, 88.54% (6.2 billion) are religious in some way – Christian 33.35% (of which Roman Catholic 16.83%, Protestant 6.08%, Orthodox 4.03%, Anglican 1.26%), Muslim 22.43%, Hindu 13.78%, Buddhist 7.13%, Sikh 0.36%, Jewish 0.21%, Baha’i 0.11%, other religions 11.17%.

    Only 9.42% are non-religious and 2.04% are atheist.
    So which position is the “default”?

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  84. RichardX (330 comments) says:

    That 25% figure – that is the percentage of people the average American adult thinks is gay according to Gallup. That’s what adults believe despite the actual evidence of the low prevalence being present in their everyday lives

    There was also a Gallup poll in 2012 the 46% of Americans believe in Creationism
    I'm not sure that americans rely on evidence much

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  85. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    And yet, most people in the world are religious. Wouldn’t that make having religion the “default”?

    No. Most of the people in the world are more than ten years old, but that doesn’t make being over ten years old the default position.

    And as you demonstrate, there are a wide range of religions, and within each of those there will be a range of beliefs and degrees of belief. There is no ‘default’ position on religion.

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  86. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    Fletch,

    I suspect what Kea means is that it is, rationally considered, the default position. That most people believe a particular proposition does not make that proposition true, though I think it is an interesting question as to why most people would believe something regarldess of whether the particular belief is true or not.

    Personally I believe religious thought is a natural and inevitable part of human nature. It is intrinsic to the way we think. Since we do not know things absolutely, what our brains do is create models of the universe in our minds. Like any model, these are invariably simplified versions of reality rather than reality itself. Religion is merely a particular type of model created by people to explain the world around them.

    While atheists may not believe in God I am quite sure that they nevertheless have a model of the Universe in their brains which like all models is flawed. The crucial question is not whether they believe in a God or not, it is whether those models update themselves in the face of conflicting evidence or whether they remain dogmatically attached to preconceived notions.

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  87. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    I’ve been out and I’ve lost the thread. However, just a last few points:

    Peter George – do keep up, we are talking about the ‘default’ position in terms of argument and analysis.

    Weihana – Nice to have the basis of some agreement. I agree that recognising gay marriage will not have much of a direct impact on the efficacy of traditional marriage (especially given that the minority is so small). There have been far more corrosive influences on marriage than this.

    CG – it’s a shame you didn’t want to engage in discussion. Unless I missed it, my question to you was whether you believed gay men (in the mean) have more or fewer or the same number of sexual partners as heterosexual men (or lesbians, for that matter)?

    Judith – the default position is ignorance. Classic stopped clock here. It’s not a coincidence that the Latin form of the Greek ‘Agnostic’ is ‘Ignoramus’.

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  88. TheContrarian (1,094 comments) says:

    ” The crucial question is not whether they believe in a God or not, it is whether those models update themselves in the face of conflicting evidence or whether they remain dogmatically attached to preconceived notions.”

    just look at this history of models:

    Steady state > expanding universe > inflation theory > increasingly expanding universe > chaotic inflation theory/multiverse > ?

    Science is a self correcting process whereas religion rejects or twists whatever doesn’t fit the narrative of whatever holy book the religion is drawn from (generalistion of course)

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  89. Pete George (23,804 comments) says:

    It’s not a coincidence that the Latin form of the Greek ‘Agnostic’ is ‘Ignoramus’.

    It would appear to be nothing more than a coincidence. There doesn’t appear to be any Greek form for ‘Agnostic’.

    The word agnostic was coined by the English biologist T.H. Huxley in the late 1860s. The original usage of the term was confined to philosophy and religion, and referred to Huxley’s assertion that anything beyond the material world, including the existence and nature of God, was unknowable.

    1870, “one who professes that the existence of a First Cause and the essential nature of things are not and cannot be known.” Coined by T.H. Huxley (1825-1895) from Gk. agnostos “unknown, unknowable,” from a- “not” + gnostos “(to be) known”

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/agnostic

    Linking to a Latin form of ‘agnostic’ would seem to be based on ignorance.

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  90. gump (1,683 comments) says:

    @Cato

    It’s not a coincidence that the Latin form of the Greek ‘Agnostic’ is ‘Ignoramus’.”

    ————————–

    According to the OED, the word Agnostic was coined in the mid-1800s.

    There is no Latin or Greek form of the word Agnostic.

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  91. RichardX (330 comments) says:

    Cato (851) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 8:58 am

    He who alleges must prove.

    If you are alleging the existence of god, where is your proof?

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  92. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    TheContrarian (936) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 11:39 am

    Science is a self correcting process whereas religion rejects or twists whatever doesn’t fit the narrative of whatever holy book the religion is drawn from (generalistion of course)

    Which I think reflects the different functions of each. Science is for advancement, religion is a form of social order.

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  93. TheContrarian (1,094 comments) says:

    “Which I think reflects the different functions of each. Science is for advancement, religion is a form of social order.”

    Religion has co-opted social order. The Code of Hammurabi for example lays out many of the laws co-opted by Christianity.

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  94. RRM (10,099 comments) says:

    Wow, this thread just reminded me why Mrs RRM and I got a civil union rather than a marriage: we didn’t want any religious poison tarnishing it.

    Jesus certainly taught his followers to be a lot of mean spirited, venal little haters. I wonder if that’s what he really had in mind?

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  95. TheContrarian (1,094 comments) says:

    Me and the wife had a wedding but nary a god was mentioned

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  96. MT_Tinman (3,317 comments) says:

    TheContrarian (938) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 12:23 pm
    Me and the wife had a wedding but nary a god was mentioned

    What a shame, there are some bloody great gods out there.

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  97. Harriet (5,200 comments) says:

    “….Jesus certainly taught his followers to be a lot of mean spirited, venal little haters. I wonder if that’s what he really had in mind?…”

    I haven’t seen any hate here – and the odd comment that heads that way doesn’t even mention God. Or religion.

    It’s all in your head RRM. Maybe you just don’t like tolerance being in the public square – and having to read what you disagree with.

    Edit: Very distressing to see people behaving like that in 2012.

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  98. ciaron (1,448 comments) says:

    kea… pulling out the big genetic fallacy guns since ages ago.

    Criticizing HOW someone came to hold a belief does nothing to undermine the TRUTH of said belief.

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  99. F E Smith (3,307 comments) says:

    Chardonnayguy,

    you are wrong in how you characterise my point, and also wrong re poly-amory. There are groups in both the UK and Oz, and probably elsewhere, that are already lobbying for the legal recognition of their relationships via marriage. But why do there need to be groups pushing for it to make it right? If gay marriage is a human right then so is poly-amorous marriage.
    I could say more, but I hate typing on a smartphone.

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  100. RichardX (330 comments) says:

    ciaron (1,004) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 1:17 pm
    kea… pulling out the big genetic fallacy guns since ages ago.

    Criticizing HOW someone came to hold a belief does nothing to undermine the TRUTH of said belief.

    Is there any evidence for the TRUTH of said belief?

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  101. Weihana (4,621 comments) says:

    F E Smith (2,902) Says:
    November 6th, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    But why do there need to be groups pushing for it to make it right?

    Because God does not send a bolt of lightning up the arse of those who violate human rights. Rather, what is and what is not considered human rights is decided by popular consensus.

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  102. Dennis Horne (2,403 comments) says:

    Cato (852) Says: November 6th, 2013 at 8:44 am (Marriages and Unions)
    Dennis Horne, maybe you should be more circumspect in your faux bravado. You claim to respect your wife yet openly post on the internet – presumably under your actual name – that if you could get away with it you would have sex with as many different women as possible. How would that make her feel to read that? We all have libidos but it’s the mark of a pretty ill-disciplined man if you can’t keep it – or your motormouth – in check.

    You suggest I live a lie. I leave that to you, Cato, you sanctimonious fathead; your whole view of the Universe is a lie.

    And don’t tell me how to relate to my wife and conduct my marriage, you impertinent little prick.

    Apart from that, you misquote my answer to criticism from Graham:

    Dennis Horne (1,858) Says: November 6th, 2013 at 8:17 am
    @Graham. I have been married for >40 years and have remained absolutely physically faithful. I would be lying if I claimed that was my personal preference, but fidelity was very important to my wife and my family was very important to me.

    Indeed, it’s the sacrifice most men make or try to make that makes the concept of marriage so important, in my opinion.

    Where did I say I wanted to have sex with as many women as possible? Apart from that, I successfully landed a single-engine aircraft after a catastrophic engine failure the other day, and I suspect that requires more discipline and cool headedness than imaging some god is looking after you. Pompous blinkered fool.

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  103. Kea (13,571 comments) says:

    Cato, atheism is not a belief. It is up to the person making a claim to prove it.

    Agnostics are intellectual cowards. If you have no evidence for something the sensible approach is non belief. We can not know anything for sure, but only with religion do we invent the absurd term agnostic. Even the term atheist is not needed. You do not call someone an atheist for not believing other things for which there is not evidence.

    If you have evidence to prove your christian god (one of thousands of gods) then shut up and just present it. You idiots have had two thousand years to do it, hurry up.

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  104. ciaron (1,448 comments) says:

    RichardX (86) Says:

    Is there any evidence for the TRUTH of said belief?

    well, you could start with these 5 arguments.

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  105. ChardonnayGuy (1,232 comments) says:

    And let’s make this clear. I oppose any decriminalisation of polygamy as opposed to polyamory. I fully accept that polygamy is a destructive misogynist institution characterised by spousal rape, violence against women and child “marriage” to pedophile sexual predators. Which may be why the British Columbian Supreme Court opposed any relaxation of Canada’s Section 293 of its Criminal Code when it came to its “Bountiful” decision. And carefully distinguished polyamory from polygamy in the process, because it has no such characteristics.

    FE: Can you provide proof for your assertions? I’ve been covering this issue for the last two years and I haven’t found any such evidence of active polyamorist spousal rights groups outside an Australian media accountability polyamorists group. Most polyamorist social networks spend a lot of time processing interminably about the ethics of their particular form of ethical but circumscribed non-monogamy.

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