On Newt Gingrich and the Criticism of Open Marriages

I’m glad that people are looking into Newt Gingrich’s marital infidelities.

I am not glad, however, that they are using the opportunity to mock and vilify open marriages. Everyone’s talking about it like the idea of an open marriage is a despicable thing. It’s not. It’s a lifestyle choice that two (or more) people can openly and honestly enter into and be happy with.

Gingrich may have wanted an open marriage, but he was never in one. Sleeping around on your wife, and then proposing an open marriage when she finds out about it is not how it works, buddy. Obviously his wife at the time was not interested in it. So he left her.

It’s perfectly fine to criticize Newt Gingrich for attempting to assuage his wife by proposing an open marriage. And it’s perfectly fine to mock him for attempting to live this lifestyle, and succeeding at being a guy who sleeps around and leaves his wife for a new one when he gets bored while at the same time speaking out about how the values traditional marriage are under attack (especially while being the driving force behind the Clinton/Lewinsky investigation). That’s all fine. Hypocrisy is hypocrisy.

But it’s not okay to make a mockery of the idea of open marriage itself.

We’re starting to see a trend where homosexuality is becoming more and more accepted into society (even among conservatives). Some say it’s the last hurdle in the civil rights movement, but there’s another one very close to it, and that’s the world of open relationships, polyamory and the like.

One day it may be perfectly legal for two men or two women to marry anywhere in the country, but the chances of that also including three-person marriages (or four, or five, etc) is highly unlikely. Hopefully after one, the other follows shortly thereafter.


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