LNH: Legion of Net.Heroes Vol. 2 # 18: Catalyst Lass vs. the Preacher!

martinphipps2 at yahoo.com martinphipps2 at yahoo.com
Fri Jul 7 20:01:09 PDT 2006

Tom Russell wrote:
> martinphipps2 at yahoo.com wrote:
> > But really, incest, miscegenation, none of this pollutes the gene pool.
> >  As long as we all get married and have children, our genes will get
> > passed on to the next generation.  No "pollutants" are introduced to
> > the worldwide gene pool, regardless of who we marry.  Genetic diseases
> > result from mutations and natural selection discourages the spreading
> > of such undesired traits.
> I think the basic argument against incest is that it is morally wrong,
> and usually the reason that it is morally wrong is, God Said So.
> I think having that taboo in place, though, discourages parents from
> abusing their children.

Well, so do age of consent laws.

> I've heard that inbreeding causes birth defects, but I think that's
> only after three or four generations of continuous inbreeding.

Well, logically, if we imagine that people have the "best" genes then
imbreeding would serve to keep the line "pure".  That was why royalty
(with "blue blood") were encouraged to marry their cousins as opposed
to "commoners".

It's a circular argument: imbreeding allows recessive genes to be
exibited.  Genetic diseases are interpretted as punishments from God.
Therefore imbreeding is wrong because God says so.

Of course, in ancient times, incest (between brothers and sisters) was
quite common.  Now, it could be that the Jewish people historically
considered it evil because it was something that their masters (ie the
Egyptians) practiced but they didn't.  I'm not saying that incest is
perfectly fine and okay, just that the argument against it may be based
more on cultural intolerance than scientific rationale.

Now, interestingly enough, doctors in China did historically warn
people against inbreeding and a law was even passed insisting that
people not marry anyone with the same family name in case they might be
related.  Nowadays, the law has been abolished because it discriminates
against people with names like Wang or Lee, people who are more likely
to meet a special someone with the same name with whom they are
unlikely to be significantly related.  So far as I know, the rescinding
of this edict hasn't led to parents abusing their children.

> Here in the States, there are several Republicans-- Rick Santorum
> famously among them-- who argue that the recent legalization of
> homosexuality would open the door to incest, beastiality, and polygamy.
>  (Me, I have no problem with polygamy.)
> I'm for equal rights for everybody, but my stance on issues of sexual
> freedom is coloured by one thing: the issue of consent.

Well, the consent issue would put the kybosh on beastiality.  There's
no way your dog can give consent and pet ownership does not give people
the right to abuse their pets.

It seems men today are more open to polygamy than women, although,
again, it was something that both men and women in power historically
practiced.  It could be that it's been so long that women haven't
enjoyed political power that it is still ingrained in a lot of their
thinking that you can only gain status by marrying a man with status.
And if the man marries several women then each one is reduced in
status, ie from being THE wife to A wife.  Plus, it's not very romantic
being one of seven wives, say the one he spends Wednesdays with.

> Let's look at
> NAMBLA, for example.  NAMBLA wants the age of consent lowered to twelve
> (most places in the U.S., it's eighteen, though in Michigan where I
> reside it's sixteen-- so long as there is no more than two years
> difference between the lovers.  Once you hit eighteen, you can have sex
> with anybody you want-- so long as they're over eighteen or no more
> than two years younger than you).

Well, a freshman in high school would be about fourteen and a senior
would be seventeen.  They could meet in high school, fall in love and
then, the very next year, have to worry about age of consent, even in
Michigan, which would be a bit silly.  Mind you, the seventeen year old
would also be going off to college the next year and there's the added
taboo against college student / high school student relationships.

> The problem with this is that, is a twelve-year-old mature/intelligent
> enough to make that decision?  And my answer is, no.  They're not.
> Most twelve-year-olds can't decide whether or not to stop watching
> Dragon Ball Z (oh no!  another threat!  let's train!  oh, he died!
> let's use the dragonballs to resurrect him!  oh, let's reveal another
> new power!  he's dead!  but there's another threat!  let's train!).
> And even if this hypothetical child has the intelligence and maturity
> of a wisened old man, we're still talking about a young boy and an
> older man-- a man who can and will use manipulation and force to get
> what he wants.  And that's wrong.

Not to mention that the twelve year old is probably not physically
mature enough to be considered an adult and that reducing the age of
consent to twelve gives an excuse to pedaphiles.  ("I thought she was
twelve!")  After all, you can be arrested for having sex with a minor
but the charges won't stick if it is clear that you didn't know said
minor was underaged.

[Well meaning analogy between twelve year olds and mentally retarded
adults deleted.]

> Now, as for the other slippery-slope argument that this invokes-- that
> is, the implication that people who are not peers on an intellectual or
> maturity level should not have a sexual relationship-- that's not what
> I'm saying.  My wife is much smarter and much more mature than I am,
> and much older, to boot.
> But I'm an adult.  I might not be the smartest or the most mature, but
> as an adult I have the right-- and the obligation-- to make my own
> decisions.

Of course, this brings up a good point: what if an adult is arrested
for statutory rape but the minor doesn't want charges brought, despite
everybody telling him or her that what the adult did was wrong?  What
if the minor later turns eighteen and is now supposedly mature enough
to know the difference and yet still feels the adult did nothing wrong?
 Will the adult then be released from jail and given a chance to
continue the now legal relationship?  I suppose, in practice, this
happens: there's the saying "Fifteen will get you twenty" but I think a
distinction has to be made between victimization by pedaphiles and
genuine May-September relationships.

> Do you know why they don't let kids drive?  No, it's not because
> they're too short!  They make cars for short people!  It's not because
> they'd be lousy drivers!  Look at any arcade.  These kids would
> probably be some of the best technical drivers on the road-- IF it
> wasn't for the fact that they don't always think through their
> decisions.

Not a good analogy as most children learn to drive from an adult.  The
analogy would suggest that it is only okay for a minor to have sex if
the other person is an adult who is capable of making responsible
decisions for the minor.

> As someone gets older, they are expected to learn how to make decisions
> responsibly.  Not only can you not expect this from children, but it's
> morally wrong to do so.  And I think it's doubly-wrong on a moral level
> to expect children to be capable of giving consent to adult acts.
> Again, I'm not arguing that certain people shouldn't be allowed to date
> or have sexual relationships.  What I'm arguing is that this question
> of sexual freedom depends squarely on the issue of consent, and that
> one cannot reasonably consider a child to be capable of giving that
> consent.
> I believe that what consenting adults of any race, gender, or age do is
> their own business.
> I believe that children are incapable of giving consent.
> I believe that animals are incapable of giving consent.
> I believe that incest is wrong, even between consenting adults.  I
> don't really have a reason for this; call it a knee-jerk reaction.

Ohhh.  Now I see where you were going with this.  Well, to me, sex with
children (other than your own) is a completely different situation to
somebody having sex with their sister.  You could argue that people
having sex with THEIR children is doubly wrong then.

> I hope that this discussion will encourage people to read the story
> itself. :-)

Well, it's hard to comment about commentary without commenting on the
commentary. :)


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