Polyamory and the Polygamy Ruling
As was widely reported today, a ruling by the Supreme Court of BC’s chief judge upheld the anti-polygamy law today, while also narrowing its scope to apply only to cases where formal marriage has taken place. This ruling was characterized as a huge relief by the Canadian Polyamory Advocacy Association, given that the new scope does not apply to the majority of those in polyamorous relationships–those who have not formalized them. This characterization seems overly positive, but
In my experience, most people who come to the realization that they are polyamorous do not consider the legal implications of their new lifestyle. Rightly so, they focus on their feelings, the feelings of their existing partner, and the potential new connections they may form. In fact, it may come as quite a shock to some polyamorous people that they may actually be breaking the law. Thankfully, even if that is the case, very few are ever impacted by the legal implications; those going through custody battles are an unfortunate exception.
Ultimately, the benefit of this decision to the polyamorous community is not the scope of the ruling itself, but the exposure to the general public of the concept of polyamory. While many will not take the time or attention to actually grasp what polyamory is, it will at least plant the seed of understanding.