Our post legalization impact on society

Amongst the various convoluted reasons behind incest remaining illegal is the ridiculous notion that it will in some way cause a kind of social catastrophe in which anarchy prevails and men devolve into savages. The reasoning goes that should the incest taboo be removed, then all sexual acts regardless of their immorality would become fair game. This is not only a form of the slippery slope fallacy, but it is patently absurd in the extreme.

Logic itself would suggest that any sexual act which is harmful in and of itself should always remain illegal, for instance bestiality and pedophilia cause significant harm and thus those acts should remain on the books as sex crimes. No sane person would argue for the legalization of shit like that, nor approve of the suggestion of such. This said, many people falsely associate incest with pedophilia and thus believe that incest in and of itself causes harm. This is ONLY true if one party is underage and thus unable to give informed meaningful consent.

However, incest between consenting adults is a completely different subject, there is no victim here, nor is there any valid reason for banning such relationships. To anyone who suggests that legalizing incest would be bad for society, it would be wise to ask them whether France, Spain, Holland, Japan, China, the Russian Federation, or Rhode Island were dealing with societal disasters as a result of incest being legal there. Of course, those countries are NOT lying in ruins or being overrun with predatory perverts.

So what would our impact be on society if incest was made legal tomorrow? I’d say relatively little, it’s not like we’re much different from anyone else anyway. We’re normal contributing members of society who raise families and like to live life to the full the same as everyone else. So while some might consider us oddballs, we’ve much more in common with regulars than they realize.

The charge that we would fundamentally change the function of the family unit or threaten family cohesion is ridiculous. There is a vast amount of diversity in what we call the modern family to begin with, and we are just one small part of that diversity. There are many things which can disrupt a family unit, most of which are perfectly legal. Take divorce for instance, that certainly upsets the functioning and cohesion of the family unit at least in the short term, but we don’t outlaw divorce because of this.

Also we do not redefine the family roles, we add to existing ones. When people are in incest relationships they are first and foremost family, then they are lovers simultaneously. Contrary to popular belief, this is NOT a contradiction, it’s the way these relationships work.

Furthermore, our way of life is often charged with destroying the traditional family unit. How could we even begin to threaten the family unit? We don’t. If somebody else wants to have the traditional setup, how does their neighbor over the road having an incestuous relationship affect them or prevent them from having what feels right to them? It doesn’t. So no, we aren’t out to destroy the family, we just live a little differently that’s all.

Of course, over time after legalization, there would be a greater amount of tolerance for us, just as their has been for LGBT persons. I doubt we would have much impact on culture, we may have some minor impact in terms of some celebrities coming out or whatever, but that isn’t exactly earth shattering stuff. So even though we may be numerous, I cannot see how giving us equality is going to negatively impact society at all. Doomsday is not going to come on our account.

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Democracy, Freedom and Consanguinamory

Most people believe that democracy and freedom go hand in hand, and on the surface of it, that seems to be the case. After all, countries which operate under democratic principals are by and large far freer societies than those that do not. If you’re lucky enough to live in a country which operates as a democracy, you’re quite entitled to say, for instance, that you hate certain politicians with no fear of reprisals. Democracy at it’s core is supposed to be a government of the people, by the people, for the people. A lofty ideal, and good on paper even when it falls short in practice due to the inherent imperfections of our politicians on all points on the political spectrum.

This said, true democracy has but one serious flaw built into it; the risk of the tyranny of the majority. Such a system would undoubtedly oppress minorities needlessly, wouldn’t it? Of course it would, there is no other way for it to be without various checks and balances being put into place which would prevent just that from occurring.

It is for this reason that the concept of HUMAN RIGHTS exists, to act as that check and balance to ensure that the rights of minorities to practice alternative lifestyles are afforded. On paper, again it all looks very very good, all people have the right to a private life, a family life, and sexual autonomy. So, what’s that to do with us?

Well, actually EVERYTHING. We are one minority that this system has so far failed miserably. Anti-incest laws are still on the books, we are still institutionally discriminated against despite being a threat to nobody. In truth these laws are still in effect due to public opinion; the public find us disgusting. Is that not the tyranny of the majority?

My argument here is that human rights concepts ought be applied universally when dealing with minorities that are harmless. We’re probably the most misunderstood and demonised sexual minority on Earth, and as such we should be protected from the tyranny of the majority, not subjected to it by our own governments on the basis that people are disgusted.

How can any system SERIOUSLY claim to believe in and practice human rights when those rights extend only to those that are approved of by the majority? That’s not real human rights, that’s just accepting those that are approved of already and to hell with anyone else! Human rights is the gateway to freedom for ALL consenting adults to engage in whatever relationships they please, regardless of whether or not it is popular. We cannot expect everyone to like us, obviously, but we can expect our governments to quit persecuting our people and throwing us in jail. We can expect to be protected from harassment and bullying, unfair dismissal at work on the basis of such relationships…etc. In short we can and SHOULD expect to be treated with the same respect and dignity as any other group of people.

We’re certainly a democratic society, but are we a FREE society? On the basis that human rights seem to apply to some and not to all, I would have to conclude that NO, we’re actually not as free as we think we are. When consenting adults can be jailed simply for having a sexual relationship which is unpopular, what kind of society are we living in? Not the pleasant, tolerant and progressive one that most people seem to think that they live in that’s for certain.

We will win the fight against bigotry and hate, we just need to get enough people to see that we are normal people leading normal lives, not weirdos or perverts. We do not need to justify our relationships because love justifies itself. We will get society to realize that just because they personally find something disgusting, does not make it necessarily wrong for everyone. We are both need and deserve equal rights, and we will settle for nothing less.

The campaign for Monica and Caleb

Over the last few months, I’ve been covering the story of Monica Mares and Caleb Petersen (for background information, go here, here, here, here and here, in that order). They are a GSA mother and son being persecuted by the law. So far their treatment has been nothing short of appalling. They weren’t read their rights when they were arrested, and they were also thrown in jail for breaking the conditions of their bail when they weren’t even told what those conditions were. Monica has had her four other children taken removed from her care and only recently has been allowed contact with her two youngest children.

Clearly this is unacceptable and unfair on all concerned. For this reason, this campaign is being launched, and it requires the participation of a large number of people. Below you will find letters and addresses to send them too. All you have to do is copy and paste the words into a word processor, print, sign and send. The more copies you can send the better, the idea is to overwhelm them with the sheer number coming in, to force them to take notice and do something about this appalling brand of so-called ‘justice’. All it will cost you is a few minutes of your time, and whatever it costs to post the letters. You don’t even have to use your real name, as long as the recipients can see that a lot of people do not want this prosecution to go ahead.

This campaign is primarily to help Monica and Caleb, but a victory here will leave the doors wide open for the legalization of consanguinamory in the United States of America, and later the world. The ramifications of our action or non-action go far beyond the consequences for this couple alone. We are one community spread across the globe, but we are united in our cause. So let’s help one of our, and in so doing, help ourselves and future generations.

Jane

 

A letter to the Judge

A letter to Calebs prosecutor

A letter to Monicas prosecutor (coming soon)

A letter to Calebs defence attorney

A letter to Monicas defence attorney

A letter to President Obama

A letter to Hillary Clinton

A letter to Donald Trump

Sign this Petition

You might remember back in January ago a petition was submitted to the Scottish government (for full story go here and here). Sadly, nobody signed it, and it was taken to mean that nobody wanted to see incest legalized. As a result of the lack of responses, it was pretty much thrown out immediately.

That said, a second attempt is underway. It doesn’t matter what country you live in you can still take part. It doesn’t matter if you’re consanguinamorous yourself or if you’re an ally who wants to see all consenting adults get equal rights… you should still sign this petition. Despite the official looking form, you DON’T even need to leave your real name, just leave a valid e-mail address, use a throwaway if you want to.

If we’re serious about this movement, and about getting the equal rights we deserve, then we ought to be doing these little things to help ourselves. We have solidarity within the community, but let’s show a little EXTRA solidarity in getting these outrageous laws repealed. It will take just two minutes of your time, and every signature is worth it’s weight in gold. Please share this page with all who may be interested, the more the merrier:)

As a final note, I will say a big thank you to Richard for getting his petition up and running again. I’m sure we will make a bloody good go of getting it signed this time around.

So, to sign it PLEASE CLICK HERE and follow the instructions.

A pint sized piece of ignorance

Ladies and gentlemen, today we have a miniature article to cover about incest in Kenya. Only a few sentences long, it’s half-baked attempt at informing the public is as lamentable as it is ignorant. Let’s get stuck in shall we.

The National Gender and Equality Commission Wednesday decried rampant cases of incest in the county as it called for prosecution of culprits.

Why bother prosecuting consenting adults? Furthermore, why is this an issue for the gender and equality commission? You’re not implying that women cannot consent to incest are you? Furthermore, if it is between consenting adults, why would the amount of incest be a problem. That’s like saying that the rampant use of sex toys or porn is bad. If something is not negative, then it matters not the quantity.

Commission Chairperson Winfred Lichuma said relatives engaging in sex had become common, raising concerns on morality values.

Morality values? So it’s moral to stop consenting adults from having relationships that you don’t approve of, is it? I fail to see how two consenting adults having sex is the concern of the state, it shouldn’t be. How does it become immoral just because two people are related? You wouldn’t decry two childhood best friends getting together, so how does it all of a sudden become disgusting if those two childhood best friends happen to be brother and sister? And while it may gain raised eyebrows if there is an age gap relationship, why does it become terrible when they’re parent and offspring? IT DOESN’T… consanguinamory is normal and natural, and should be respected as part of relationship diversity.

She said men were engaging in sex with their daughters or sisters.

That’s bad…. why? When incest is a part of a loving relationship, it is NOT a bad thing, it can indeed be a very GOOD thing. I speak from experience.

She said wife battery and defilement were on the rise. “We are preaching against gender-based violence,” she said.

Hold on a minute here, wife beating and defilement (child molesting) are BOTH completely different topics from consanguinamory. A man who beats his wife should be prosecuted for assault. Somebody who molests a child should be prosecuted for pedophilia. Nobody would argue those points. But WHAT DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH INCEST BETWEEN CONSENTING ADULTS? The answer: Absolutely NOTHING. So why even bring it up?

Actually, stupid question, I know EXACTLY why you brought it up. It was thrown in there to falsely associate incest with sexual violence against women and children. You might have fooled a lot of people because of their prejudices, but you haven’t fooled me or any number of other free thinking individuals who can spot propaganda a mile away. Nice try, but FAIL.

Shutting the borders leads to incest… apparently

Okay, this has to be one of the most unintentionally amusing stories I’ve covered, thanks in no small part to the lunatic ravings of the silly old fart who serves as the finance minister of Germany. The sheer stupidity of his statement is both breathtaking and mind boggling, leaving the reader scratching their head in amazement and wondering how anyone could conjure up such an outrageous statement. But then, maybe it was an overload of stupid.

Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble told a German newspaper this week that closing Germany’s borders would lead to incest. Wait, what?

“Isolation is what would ruin us – it would lead us into incest,” the finance minister told Die Zeit, doing a good imitation of a doomsday preacher.

So, let me get this straight… according to this moron, if a country were to shut it’s borders to mass immigration, it would lead to incest. Huh? How does that even compute, at all?

Okay, lets take a deep breath and take a step back here. If you aren’t attracted to a family member when the borders are open, logic would say that you aren’t going to become attracted to them as soon as the borders close. Incest only happens when the Westermarck effect is absent or very weak.

The borders open approach has only happened for the last few decades in the European Union anyway. By his bizarre logic, it would imply that all those people who lived during WW2 and all of history prior to that would have been secretly having affairs with family members. It would also mean that people would prefer to have relations with foreigners if available… again, not necessarily. While interracial relationships can and do happen, they are not a requirement for incest avoidance, the Westermarck effect does that for most people. Most people, whether the borders are open or shut, will have relationships with people outside their family and within their own cultural or racial identity. This isn’t xenophobia, it’s fact.

I’m not bothering to cover the rest of the article as it is about politics and therefore irrelevant to this blog. In conclusion, this laughable claim has more to do with political posturing than any form of sensible political debate. If he was trying to persuade people that it’s best to keep the borders open… wow, this is EPIC FAIL.

Unconventional love needs no justification

Many times, especially when dealing with others on the internet (although the same can apply offline too, of course), there is the temptation to try to justify our relationships. Don’t get me wrong, if somebody is asking a genuine question where the intent is to learn, then they deserve an honest answer and one should be provided. However, sometimes people get into debated about the rights and wrongs of relationships that do not follow the societal norms, and that of course includes incest. So people sometimes feel backed up into a corner, feeling as though they need to justify their feelings in order to shore up their validity.

My message today is that you DON’T have to justify your feelings or relationship to anyone. You have as much right to love and happiness as anyone else, and it’s NOT a sin to deviate from the crowd. People enter into mutual relationships because they love each other, to share time and experiences with each other, they raise families, buy or rent homes and do all the regular stuff that people do with their lives. That applies universally, whether you’re straight or gay, monogamous or polyamorous, regular or consanguinamorous.

People would not ask their friend to justify why she is dating a guy from her workplace, or a guy they know from the bar to justify his relationship with his best friend since high school, they wouldn’t ask a homosexual to justify his or her orientation either. So why suddenly, when it comes to incest or polyamory, do people all of a sudden require such justification? It makes no sense.

Love justifies itself, and it knows no artificial barriers. People do of course have a free choice on whether to act on such feelings or not, and it would be short-sighted and stupid to claim that people have no autonomy on who they enter into relationships with… clearly they do. Everyone is responsible for their own lives. But the CHOICE of an unconventional relationship that is based in love never needs justification, it needs acceptance (or at the very least tolerance).

Consider this: every time we try to justify our choices, we are giving in to our opponents claim that our love needs such justification. It doesn’t. Consanguinamory is just as valid as any other type of relationship between consenting adults. So each time we get into a debate with a naysayer, it would be a great idea to say ‘if your relationship needs no justification, then neither does mine’. At best it will get the other person to stop and think, and at worst it could send the other person on a rant, either way, some of the spectators will stop and think. There are plenty of debate tactics to use that do not rely on self-justification.

All in all, just know that you’re not obliged to explain yourself to anyone, and why should you?

The state DOES NOT necessarily know best

Most people believe that the governments of the world put laws there for a reason, and that if something is illegal, there must be a good reason for it. Sometimes this appears to be true, for instance there are legitimate reasons why it is illegal to run a red light, or to assault somebody, or to steal from them. However, there are some laws in place which really ought not be there, and one of those laws is the law against consensual adult incest.

Something as private and as personal as ones sex life should not be something for the state to dictate. Provided that all participants are of legal age and are consenting to the relationship, where exactly is the harm?

The state would claim that incest is illegal to protect people from sexual abuse, and to prevent deformed inbred babies from being born. So lets have a little look at this logically:

  1. It is quite possible, feasible and doable to legalize consensual adult incest whilst keeping pedophilia and sexual assault illegal. Penalties are already in place for child molestation and sexual assault (if anything those penalties should be more severe than they actually are). In the exact same way as the legalization of homosexuality did not lead to the legalization of same sex pedophilia, the legalization of incest will not lead to the legalization of same family pedophilia.
  2. The state sometimes says that even amongst adults, incest cannot be truly consensual where there is a power imbalance. Well, that doesn’t apply to GSA couples or to similarly aged siblings for a start. Here they’re mostly on about parent/offspring relations. However, the power differential here is TINY compared to some of the perfectly legal relationships like boss/employee and rich/poor. Just because it is possible for abuse to occur, does not mean that it will, and as stated above, it is possible to prosecute abusers without simultaneously persecuting consenting adults. Telling offspring in consensual relationships with their parent that they can’t consent is offensive and insulting, because it is treating those young adults like children who can’t make proper decisions for themselves. Again, if they can make the choice to have a relationship with a billionaire or their boss, they can make the choice to have a relationship with a parent.
  3. On the reproduction issue. I’ve said it before in other articles, and I’ll say it again… Everyone should be held to the same standards. We don’t stop others from procreating who may have a higher risk of birth defects, such as women over 40, drug abusers, alcoholics, heavy smokers, people with existing inheritable medical conditions, people who need medicines which may harm an unborn baby, people who have been exposed to radiation or toxic chemicals…. etc. Some of those people have a considerably higher chance of birth defects than the average incest couple. So in the interests of fairness and equality alone, this argument is complete horse shit.
  4. The state has no business telling people who they may or may not have a relationship with. It is infantilizing people and not allowing them to make their own choices in life. Big Brother DOES NOT KNOW WHAT’S BEST FOR YOU, only you know that, and you should have the legal right to make up your own mind and choose for yourself, especially on an issue as personal as who to have an intimate relationship with.

Some laws which were borne out of prejudice and fear should have no place in the 21st century, and it is my hope that one day, these oppressive and overbearing anti-incest laws are placed in the dustbin of history where they belong, alongside the anti-gay legislation, slave owning, and misogyny which tarnished the past.

An outrageous case of discrimination: UPDATE 4

For those of you unfamiliar with this case, you’ll find the backstory here, here, here and here(in that order). What we’re about to go through is the latest pile of crap emanating from the mouths of their persecutors. Let’s dig in:

A Clovis woman, facing an incest charge with an adult child, will be allowed to have contact with her 5- and 6-year-old children, a judge ruled on Tuesday.

Well I should bloody well hope so! Tearing a loving family apart like this and separating a mother from her children is cruel to all concerned.

Monica Mares, 36, and Caleb Peterson, 19, face up to three years in prison and a $5,000 fine if convicted of incest charges, which is a third-degree felony.

Which, I’ll say it again, is outrageous. This couple was not harming anybody by their relationship. Why waste police time and money on an unnecessary and cruel prosecution?

A trial has been slated for August.

Again, what a waste of money. Go after some REAL criminals would you, you know, the ones that leave behind actual victims.

But during a hearing on Tuesday, Mares’ attorney, Brett Carter, and Mares petitioned Judge Drew Tatum to allow the conditions of her release be amended so she could have contact with her younger children.

She should be allowed contact with ALL of her children, including Caleb who she had a GSA relationship with. Better yet, why should this be a legal matter at all?

“During arraignment, my client was in custody and wanted to address the conditions of release,” Carter said in addressing Tatum. “One of the conditions of release was that she have no contact with two of her children. One is 5 and one is 6 (years old). The two children were not called to testify during the grand jury hearing, they both have speech impediments and we don’t believe they have anything to add to the case. All we ask is that the conditions be modified so she can see her 5- and 6-year-old children. The children miss their mother.”

Of course they miss their mother, they should never have been separated from her. Even more to the point, will the ages of her kids be taken into consideration if she is convicted and sentenced, and their need for their mother? I doubt it. This trial has the potential to punish not only Monica and Caleb, but the whole family including FOUR INNOCENT CHILDREN. Does that sound right or fair to you? Think about that.

Mares, who is free on bond, pleaded with Tatum to again be in her children’s lives.

“Your honor, I really want my kids back,” she said. “My mom is keeping my 5- and 6-year-old.”

Testimony also showed Mares has two other children, age 13 and 14.

She should never have been separated with any of them. All of this because the state does not approve of her love life. How sick and sad it is that this couple are being treated so disgracefully. This makes me angry.

Ninth Judicial District Assistant District Attorney Leah Hutchins argued against Mares contacting her younger children:

“We ask that the no-contact order remain,” she said. “For one, the nature of the charges. Initially, Ms. Mares had problems following the conditions of her release anyway, as she was ordered to have no contact with the co-defendant and showed up in magistrate court with the co-defendant. Both of their bonds, I believe, were revoked at that time.

“Additionally, the notes from Mrs. (Andrea) Reeb (district attorney) says the kids could definitely be included as witnesses per the police report. For those reasons the state is asking the no-contact remain.”

So, the prosecution argued that she should NOT get to see her kids because OF THE NATURE OF THE CHARGES? So…. that means that they believe that she is about to molest her young ones because she had a consensual relationship with her ADULT child from whom she was separated? Make no mistake, that is the sick and twisted implication here… and they are DEAD WRONG. This is prejudice and assumptions at work.

Oh, and about the release terms violation, if I recall correctly, that is because they WEREN’T ACTUALLY TOLD TO HAVE NO CONTACT, and then they were re-arrested when they did. You cannot follow an instruction you are not given.

“I am going to allow contact with the 5- and 6-year-old,” Tatum ruled, “but let me be absolutely clear about the concerns the state has about you (Mares) following the conditions of your release.

“You need to know these rules and if you don’t follow them, I will revoke your bond, put you back in jail and you will have no contact with any of your family. These are not suggestions, these are rules. You’re not to have any contact with the co-defendant. You have contact with the 5- and 6-year-old, but you will not discuss the case with them in any way. If you do, I will revoke your bond and put you right back in jail.”

This is pure insanity. They can prevent her from having any contact with her family if she is banged up…. surely that is a human rights violation. If it isn’t, it should be. As for the states touching concern for these young children… I don’t feel it, do you? This is the ranting of a broken system, one that needs repairing, and quickly.

Additionally, Tatum said in accordance with conditions of her release, Mares cannot leave Curry or Roosevelt County, consume alcohol or any illegal drugs and must be present for all hearings.

Not leaving the county… understandable, not taking illegal drugs…. a given…. not consuming alcohol? Why the hell not? It’s not like a couple of glasses of wine is going to do any harm. After the stress this must be putting her through she deserves a drink, on the house.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is what you call a pointless prosecution borne from a deep seated prejudice enshrined into law. This is hateful, this is persecution, this is bigotry of the worst kind. Monica, if you’re out there reading this, know that you and your son have supporters and allies out here who will blog for you… I for one am following your case.