Savagely Exploding Monogamy

I meant to quote this Dan Savage comment when he first wrote it on his blog in response to the Mark Sanford and Jon and Kate scandals, and then he ended up putting it in his column, so I missed out on the timeliness factor, but it's still quite good and relevant:

A new euphemism: When someone cheats on a spouse, that should be known as "hiking the Appalachian Trail" in honor of South Carolina governor Mark Sanford.

But I have to say that Adultery Confessional Theater is getting tired. Can our culture start to deflate the drama on extramarital affairs a little? Bill Clinton, Eliot Spitzer, Larry Craig, Jon and Kate, John Ensign, Mark Sanford: Yes, it sucks if kids are involved and it often leads to divorce. But I wonder if setting the panic bar a bit lower wouldn't save more marriages. Maybe we should embrace the fact that few of us will remain monogamous over the long life of a marriage.

Anne In NJ

I'm with you, AINJ: At the bottom of all these sex scandals—Sanford, Ensign, Spitzer, et al.—is our unnatural fixation on monogamy. Human beings, male or female, aren't wired to be sexually monogamous, and the feigned shock with which we're required to greet each new revelation of infidelity on the part of an elected official, a reality-show star, or a sports figure would be comical if the costs weren't so great. Elevating monogamy over all else—insisting that it, and it alone, is the sole measure of love and devotion—destroys countless marriages, families, and careers.

Which is not to say that people shouldn't honor their commitments or that there aren't folks out there capable of remaining monogamous over the five-decade course of a marriage or that the hypocrisy of assholes like Sanford—who called on President Clinton to resign during Monicagate—isn't worthy of censure. But think of all the people who've cheated and gotten caught. Now think about all the people who've cheated and gotten away with it. Our idealized notions about sex—within marriage and without—are at war with who and what we are. Sex is powerful; relationships are fragile. Why on earth do we insist on pitting them against each other?

The only part I'd push back against is his claim that humans aren't wired to be sexually monogamous. I have no idea how we are wired, if we are all wired the same, or if there are a significant number of outliers (and if these outliers are the consistently monogamous ones or the polyamorous ones), but there is clearly something wrong with the social expectation of life-long monogamy. It is totally unrealistic to the point of being laughable, and seems to lead to more frustration and family disintegration than if the expectation didn't exist at all. I understand some people have trouble dealing with their petty jealousies, but maybe they should try a little Don't Ask, Don't Tell instead of the nuclear option?

Share this

On Wiring

The best evidence suggests that humans, like most other vertebrates, are not exclusive in their sexual relationships. But there's also good reason to believe that, despite our sexual infidelity, we're "wired" to act otherwise. So for those who are inclined to cite our biological underpinnings, it's important to consider more than just one aspect. We benefit from being sexually liberal while appearing sexually conservative.

As I said, I don't know

As I said, I don't know enough about our biological underpinnings to conclude either way, but I am very skeptical of claims that start off with a description of how we evolved a long time ego in societies very different from our own that somehow end up determining how we must or should behave today. Whatever constraints our biological underpinnings may create for us, as enlightened beings we might want to strive for honesty over deceit. Deceit seems pretty unhealthy.

Perhaps we are wired to be

Perhaps we are wired to be unfaithful ourselves, but demand fidelity from others.

It is a commonplace that "ought implies is", or one should not demand the impossible. I think fighting against the current is often futile, so best just to channel imperfections in the least destructive manner. Making it infeasible to maintain deceit through the expansion of common knowledge may be one way.

Re: Perhaps we are wired to be

To your first point, I think that's true, but we are also attempting to appear faithful, so as not to invoke the wrath of those who demand it from us. So being deceitful is, in fact, to our (evolutionary) advantage.

To your second point, I wouldn't even attempt to derive an ought from any of this. It is what it is. My earlier post was just an attempt to explain why it is that people are so hung up on politicians sex lives. I think it's largely due to our biological double-standard, not because we're simply a prudish culture. Though I'm sure culture plays a role.

esthetician schools Thanks a

esthetician schools
Thanks a lot for this beauty Enjoying article with me. I am Appreciating it very much! Looking Forward to Another Great.

Well this content sounds

Well this content sounds interesting but thie new euphemism sounds really odd. :/
kredyt hipoteczny

I really like visiting your

I really like visiting your blog which is updated on a regular basis unlike others which die pretty soon. When ever I need any such kind of information, I know where to look for.
best golf simulator

I would definitely agree. I

I would definitely agree. I like this information on this blog because it is updated regularly. In between sipping my coffee from the best french press and reading my morning newspaper, this website makes my day go by better.

Sports team needs a megaphone

Sports team needs a megaphone on the cheer day.

money.litdesigns

This is the right weblog for anyone who wants to learn about this subject.

I browse your site, I love

I browse your site, I love the information you provide here and I'm surprised. Notified that this is the first place where I find issues and topics I've been searching for. The post has a top quality yishuilvyou

DWI Attorney Houston No man

DWI Attorney Houston No man who worships education has got the best out of education.... Without a gentle contempt for education no man's education is complete.

Post info

Bardzo ciekawie napisany artykuł poświęcony fotowoltaice i projektowaniu instalacji solarnych wiele dobrych informacji o budowie elektrownie słoneczne.

locksmith

24 hour locksmith Atlanta so many comments here that are really interesting and conducive to me thanks for sharing a link especially for sharing this blog.

Book of Ra kostenlos

Book of Ra kostenlos spielen

explain the fullyt site , Give more detail about it . It is not so fast

Cloud Hosting I figure I am

Cloud Hosting I figure I am not the specific having all the unwinding here! Keep up the extraordinary work.seo companyremely speedy.

cloth is very important to

cloth is very important to make personality yourself now you can buy online different type of cloth here Gorras

Re

Fantastic blog ! I don’t think I’ve seen all the angles of this subject the way you’ve pointed them out. Allhealthreviews for health products.

seen all the angles of this

seen all the angles of this subject the way you’ve pointed them out. Allhealthreviews for health products. peak transfer

’ve seen all the angles of

’ve seen all the angles of this subject the way you’ve pointed them out. Allhealthreviews for health products. View this site

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hi there to all, it's truly a good for me to visit this website,
it consists of valuable Information.

Feel free to surf to my blog post: les sims 4 telecharger gratuit

I don’t think I’ve seen all

I don’t think I’ve seen all the angles of this subject the way you’ve pointed them out. Allhealthreviews for health products. click here

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

It's awesome for me to have a web page, which is
valuable in favor of my knowledge. thanks admin

make personality yourself now

make personality yourself now you can buy online different type of cloth game

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hi there Dear, are you actually visiting this web site on a regular basis, if so after that
you will without doubt obtain pleasant know-how.

My homepage :: Qui a peur de Vagina Wolf Télécharger Le Film

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

It's really a nice and helpful piece of info. I'm glad that you shared this helpful information with us.
Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

excellent points altogether, you simply gained a
new reader. What might you suggest about your publish that you just made some days in
the past? Any certain?

Also visit my web blog Brave frontier hacks

Informative

Really awesome work with the blog. I do like your hard work on and will wait for more post as from you as post gave me pleasure and gives some helps to do same work right here. Thanks a lot
Manessis Travel Booking | Sweat Shop Factory | Shop Davis County | Graph O Shop | Hindu Wedding Photo | Erica Berger Weddings | Celebrity Wedding Hair | The Wedding Toast | Booster Marriage | Civil Marriage Lebanon

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

I hardly comment, but i did some searching and wound up here
Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic. And I do have 2 questions for you if you do
not mind. Could it be just me or does it look like a few of the responses come across like
they are left by brain dead individuals? :-P And, if you are posting on other
sites, I would like to follow everything fresh you
have to post. Would you make a list of every one of all your public sites
like your Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hello would you mind stating which blog platform you're working with?

I'm looking to start my own blog in the near future but I'm having a hard time
making a decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and
Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I'm looking for something unique.
P.S Sorry for being off-topic but I had to ask!

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Howdy! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us so I came to give it a
look. I'm definitely loving the information. I'm book-marking
and will be tweeting this to my followers! Exceptional blog and wonderful design and
style.

My web-site - What-Causes-Hemroids

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hello i am kavin, iits my first occasion to ccommenting anyplace, when i read this piece of writing i thought i could also create comment due
to this sensible piece of writing.

Look ingo my web page online casino lebanon

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Greetings! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering if you
knew where I could find a captcha plugin for my comment form?

I'm using the same blog platform as yours and I'm having difficulty finding one?
Thanks a lot!

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hey there I am so thrilled I found your website, I really found you by mistake, while I was researching on Aol for something
else, Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say cheers for a fantastic post and a all round interesting
blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read through it all at the minute but I have bookmarked it and also included your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do
keep up the awesome work.

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Undeniably believe that that you said. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the internet the easiest thing
to be mindful of. I say to you, I definitely get annoyed while people think
about concerns that they just do not recognise about.
You controlled to hit the nail upon the highest as neatly as defined out the entire thing with
no need side-effects , other people can take a signal.

Will likely be back to get more. Thanks

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Now I am ready to do my breakfast, when having my breakfast coming over again to read more news.

my webpage jOe PANTEl (Jonelle)

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

I believe what you published was actually very logical.
However, think on this, what if you were to create a awesome title?
I ain't suggesting your content isn't solid, however what if you added a post title that makes people desire more?

I mean Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic is a little boring.
You could peek at Yahoo's home page and note how
they write post titles to get viewers to open the links.
You might try adding a video or a pic or two to get readers interested about everything've written.
Just my opinion, it might bring your posts a little bit more interesting.

Here is my webpage ... Executive Homes Realty fremont

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
I've been trying for a while but I never seem
to get there! Thanks

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

This is really attention-grabbing, You're an overly professional blogger.
I have joined your rss feed and stay up for seeking extra
of your great post. Additionally, I've shared your web site
in my social networks

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Hi there! I know this is kinda off topic however ,
I'd figured I'd ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest
authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My blog covers a lot of the same subjects as yours
and I believe we could greatly benefit from each other.
If you happen to be interested feel free to shoot me
an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Wonderful
blog by the way!

Feel free to surf to my web site ... dasdasdasd :: Jacquelyn ::

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

I am really impressed with your writing abilities and also with the layout for your blog.
Is this a paid topic or did you modify it your self?
Either way keep up the nice high quality writing, it's rare
to peer a nice blog like this one today..

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

It's like you read my mind! You appear to recognize a lot concerning this,
as if you wrote the e-book in it or something. This is a
wonderful blog. I'll definitely be back.

Also visit my blog post - acne treatment - bestacneproducts81.xtgem.com,

cheap oakley sunglasses

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic cheap oakley sunglasses http://goo.gl/bwYN1

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Spot on with this write-up, I truly feel this site needs far more
attention. I'll probably be returning to see more, thanks for the information!

My weblog 08 Béchar الوظيف العمومي المسابقات الجزائر

The Distributed Republic

The Distributed Republic cheap oakley sunglasses stop loss order

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

The fish oil part sounds great but what about all those warnings about eating too much fish,
especially for pregnant women and small children. o This
critical factor will need to be noticed that not all the nutritional supplements
are equivalent. Doctors have recognized for years that good quality fish oil helps the heart, brain, blood
pressure and can help lower cholesterol.

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

These are really impressive ideas in concerning blogging.
You have touched some nice things here. Any way keep up wrinting.

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Wow, this piece of writing is pleasant, my sister
is analyzing these kinds of things, so I am going to convey her.

Feel free to surf to my site; ผิวขาว

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

First off I want to say awesome blog! I had a quick question in which I'd like to ask
if you don't mind. I was interested to know how you center
yourself and clear your mind before writing.
I have had a tough time clearing my thoughts in getting my ideas out.
I do enjoy writing however it just seems like the first 10 to
15 minutes are lost simply just trying to figure out
how to begin. Any recommendations or hints?
Thanks!

Reply to comment | The Distributed Republic

Good day! I could have sworn I've been to your blog before but
after going through a few of the posts I realized it's new to me.
Anyways, I'm definitely pleased I stumbled upon it and I'll be bookmarking it and checking back often!

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <img> <blockquote> <b> <i> <s> <del> <object> <embed> <script> <param> <center> <hr> <p>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options