This story of a husband with three wives in Utah will not terrify Americans. Polygamy doesn’t come off as a barbaric threat to the country’s moral fabric. It looks more like what it really is: an arrangement that can make sense for some people in some circumstances, but not one that could ever be a dangerous trend in America.
After watching the husband on the show struggle to pay for three households and watching his three wives struggle for his attention, the question that comes to mind is not how to keep polygamy illegal. The question is why we bother to ban something that takes so much work these days.”
The government should not play “big brother” for the very reason that it is incapable of teaching people how to live their own lives. If polygamy is bad for individuals, we need to trust that they can figure that out on their own. If we can’t trust individuals to figure this out, then we demean their capacity to reason and to assume responsibility over their own affairs. Even if we were to assume that polygamy is bad, it is clear that government laws and intervention are incapable of instructing individuals to do right. Or, at least the government it is not more capable than social and individual reasoning in guiding individuals to do right. This reasoning is validated by the fact that, despite laws against polygamy, the practice continues to be widespread. Maybe that is because it is actually not bad.