LGBT vs Polyamory 4/4

Image via Newsweek

If you want the rewards, do the work. That isn’t flippant or glib. I mean it genuinely. If you want a repeal of 1800s anti bigamy laws, you’re going to need to package and sell the idea to the masses. You’re going to have to reassure people who won’t be impacted and defend yourself against people who will never be persuaded, and you’re going to have to do it for years.

You’re going to have to balance visibility with respectability, and have a lot of painful in group conversations about what image you want to project to the world. You’re going to have to reassure people that you’re not FLDS Mormons bent on marrying several teen girls to an old man, and you’re going to have to consider how any proposed legislation might impact victims of sexist polygamy and child marriage.

You’re going to have to field invasive questions about your sex life and defend your own humanity. You’re going to have to face backlash and an increase in oppression and violence as punishment for every bit of social and legal acceptance you earn. You’re going to have to watch things get worse before they get better.

That’s not a fun list of chores, I know. That list, and the lack of motivating persecution, is enough for me not to spend my activism energy on poly acceptance or poly legislation. The risk to reward ratio sucks, and I’m not so desperate that seems worthwhile anyway.

Until you’re willing to do the work, you’re going to have to live without the rewards. That is the way of the world. Asking or expecting LGBT people, people facing enough real persecution we are willing to do the work, to do your work as well isn’t just lazy and outrageous. It’s disrespectful of our efforts, our sacrifices, our dead.

If you are straight, that is to say cis gender heterosexual and not a part of the LGBT extended alphabet, then National Coming Out Day is not for you. Appropriating it from queers, especially while claiming to be an ally, is an asshole thing to do. You have 364 other days to “come out” about preferring multiple partners. Let us have this day: we did the work to earn it.  It is ours.

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