Polyamorous relationships are getting newfound respectability after a city near Boston became the first in the country to officially recognize this particular sexual and marital perversion.
Somerville, Massachusetts passed an ordinance changing the definition of relationships that are recognized by the government, with the city no longer limiting the number of people included in a partnership. Whereas before they were defined as “entity formed by 2 persons,” the new definition reads a relationship “formed by people.”
The Somerville Journal reports that “Ward 6 Councilor Lance Davis, who chairs the Legislative Matters committee that reviewed the ordinance, said this began by just wanting to draft an ordinance recognizing domestic partnerships. “
After he submitted it, one of the other councilors reached out and said:
‘Why is this two?’ And I said, ‘I don’t have a good answer’ I tripped over my words a bit, and played devil’s advocate, but I had no good reason. So, I pulled it out, went through quickly making whatever word changes necessary to make it not gendered or limited to two people.”
The ordinance passed unanimously. It also “replaces “he and she” with “they,” replaces “both” with “all,” and contains other inclusive language. Davis said:
“I’ve consistently felt that when society and government tries to define what is or is not a family, we’ve historically done a very poor job of doing so.”
It is estimated that some 4-5% of people in the U.S. are involved in polyamorous relationships.