Venue change for my Seattle talk »« I support the #tooFEW project

Hamza Tzortzis is playing gotcha with Lawrence Krauss now

After that debate between Tzortzis and Lawrence Krauss that was overshadowed by the disgraceful anti-egalitarian exhibition of Muslim misogyny, iERA is now trying a new tactic: they’re releasing tiny snippets of the debate that they believe they can spin into anti-Krauss sentiment. Here’s a perfect example, Krauss’s reply to a question about the morality of incest.

The audience gasped when Krauss said it’s not clear to him that incest is wrong, and then he went on to argue that there are biological and societal reasons why incest is not a good idea, but that he’d be willing to listen to rational arguments for sexual and emotional interactions between siblings, for instance…not that he’d encourage such behavior. It’s a nuanced and complicated reply in too short a time, but otherwise, he’s not wrong.

But you know what Tzortzis is thinking: this is a perfect clip to play to the dogmatic mob, his people, who don’t do complicated and nuanced, and don’t care about rational arguments, only absolute dictates.

I’d add two other arguments that might sink in.

One is that religions also rationalize incest. Here’s the Protestant Christian example:

Since Eve was made from one of Adam’s ribs [Genesis 2:21-22], she would have been a clone of Adam and, had there been any genetic mutation in Adam, this would have been reproduced in Eve and expressed in their offspring. However, we may reasonably conclude that there were no mutations, and the very first commandment given to them was “to be fruitful and multiply” [Genesis 1:28]. However, the business at the tree of the knowledge of good and evil took place long before there were any children.

The account then continues where God confronted the guilty pair at the tree, but they did not confess their guilt or plead for forgiveness [Genesis 3:1-13]. God then cursed the serpent, imposed reproductive difficulties upon Eve and “cursed the ground for [Adam’s] sake” [Genesis 3:17]. From that moment, everything that Adam – and mankind since – ate had grown in the cursed ground. Cell by living cell, Adam began to very slowly change from his initial state of eternal perfection to mortal imperfection, and he finally died at the age of 930 years [Genesis 5:5]. Nevertheless, Adam and Eve’s immediate offspring would have been very close to physical perfection while brother-sister marriages were the only unions possible! Further, according to the genealogies given in Scripture, pre-flood longevity was about the same as that for Adam, so families were very large compared to those of today. Brother-sister unions were not only unavoidable, but they undoubtedly became traditional and expected.

Catholics make a similar argument.

Incest was not a problem for the immediate descendants of Adam and Eve. It became a problem when the deterioration of the gene pool meant that there was an increased likelihood that the offspring of the unions of near relatives would inherit physical or mental problems. Adam’s immediate descendants inherited perfect or nearly perfect genes, so the unions of near relatives were not a problem. Besides, near relatives were the only people who existed.

Muslims, too.

it is a known fact that legislation differs from one Shari’ah to another, while the principles and beliefs remain the same in all of them. So, making of portraits was allowed in the Shari’ah of Sulayman (peace be upon him) but is prohibited in our Shari’ah. Similarly, making prostration of salutation was permitted in the Shari’ah of Yusuf (peace be upon him) but is illegal in ours. Also, war booty was prohibited for nations before us but it is completely legal for us. The Qiblah of people before us used to be towards Bayt Al-Maqdis, but for us it is towards Ka’bah. In a similar way, marriage between brothers and sisters was permitted in the Shari’ah of Adam (peace be upon him) as opposed to those that came afterwards. The following is a clarification on the issue by Haafidh Ibn Katheer, who said:

Allaah allowed Adam (peace be upon him) to marry his daughters to his sons for necessity. Every couple used to have a boy and a girl. Hence, he married the girl of one couple to the boy of another. This is said by Suddi regarding what has been narrated by Abu Maalik and Abu Salih, from Ibn ‘Abbas, by Murrah from Ibn Mas‘ood and by other companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) that Adam did not have (in his grandchildren) a baby boy unless it was accompanied by a girl, so he married the male of a couple to the female of another, and the female of a couple to the male of another

So apparently their absolute moral prohibition against incest isn’t quite so absolute after all. A good Muslim can fuck his sister if Allah tells him to.

But the other example I’d give is current, and it’s done all the time. Ever looked at a purebred Arabian horse’s pedigree? It’s an incestuous nightmare, and it’s encouraged — it’s even regarded as a good thing to reinforce good stock with a moderate amount of inbreeding.

Here’s an example of a horse pedigree. Notice what’s going on?

horsepedigree

Look at Pie’s Joseph, for instance. He is the product of a breeding between Wood’s Jay and Wood’s Jay’s granddaughter, Wood’s Chili.

Pie’s Joseph was then bred with his own niece, Pie’s Lady I, and they had a daughter, Pie’s Lady II. Pie’s Joseph was than bred to his own daughter to produce a son, Blue Joe, who is also his grandson.

Let’s not even get into cows and pigeons. Here’s a quick glimpse at the sordid sex life of Favorite:

cowpedigree

Are you squicked out yet? You shouldn’t be. This stuff is going on on farms all over the world. The biological prohibition isn’t quite as strong as you might think — if you want extremes of a phenotype, as you might in agriculture, trying to achieve selective homozygosity for specific traits might actually give you an advantage.

We tend to not want that kind of result in human crosses…although, if you think about it, an unscrupulous nation could embark on a breeding program for athletic ability that would benefit from a multi-generation pattern of incest…

But this all highlights a common problem: get into a debate with fanatics and ideologues like the iERA mob, and they will actually hold it against you if you actually consider the complexities of reality. We like both complexity and reality; how can you argue with someone who comes in with a bias that what you regard as virtues are sinful, and demands that the universe fit itself to their false simplicities?

Comments

  1. doublereed says

    Huh. I would’ve just argued that there is often a massive consent issue with incest. I think that’s a lot more serious than the genetic issues which may not necessarily come up.

  2. Scrago Winslow says

    From the catholic piece: “Adam’s immediate descendants inherited perfect or nearly perfect genes”
    There’s no such thing as perfect genes. Genes, and organisms, exist and function within an ecological context. What can be a harmful gene in one environment can be a detriment in another.

  3. Scrago Winslow says

    Of course I meant harmful in one context and helpful in another. It’s still early.

  4. says

    Consent is the big deal-breaker for incest arguments, I agree, but that was Krauss’s point already. If two siblings are mutually agreeable and enthusiastic, then the consent issue is suddenly off the table, and now how does a non-authoritarian argue against it? It turns out to be harder than iERA thinks.

  5. Mak, acolyte to Farore says

    Consent isn’t always that clean cut, though, especially when there’s concern about one sibling grooming another.

    But really, it’s not as universally reviled as they seem to think. Even if you don’t consider the religious points already pointed out, most states in the US allow second-cousin relationships, and some even allow first-cousin relationships if there’s medical reason to assume they can’t accidentally reproduce.

    I wonder how many of us can actually go back through our family tree and not find a single instance of incest anywhere in it.

  6. Mak, acolyte to Farore says

    What’s kind of funny is how many of those states allow incestuous marriage but don’t allow same-sex marriage.

  7. patterson says

    What’s kind of funny is how many of those states allow incestuous marriage but don’t allow same-sex marriage.

    Well of course, it wasn’t Adam and Steve it was Adam and his sister Eve.

  8. No One says

    On the Greek island of Lemnos there was a devastating fire in a cinema theater that killed a number of inhabitants. The film stock used in the beginning of the 20th century was very flammable. In solidarity the island of Rhodes sent two deer as gifts. A shepherd fearing that the deer would compete for forage with his flock, went to the pen the deer where in, and in a drunken state bashed one of the deers head in with a rock. He killed the wrong one. The pregnant female survived and gave birth to a son. There is a beautiful herd of deer currently residing around the castle at the town of Myrna. I have heard anecdotally, that some exchanges of stock have happened to strengthen the bloodline.

  9. sc_770d159609e0f8deaa72849e3731a29d says

    “The biological prohibition isn’t quite as strong as you might think — if you want extremes of a phenotype, as you might in agriculture, trying to achieve selective homozygosity for specific traits might actually give you an advantage.”

    A friend of mine, who is part of the Darwin-Galton-Keynes-Vaughan Williams-Wedgwood-etc family, cites his own family as an unconscious human example. For a couple of hundred years they had a high rate of cousin marriage- Charles Darwin himself is an example- and produced several geniuses, a large number of very talented people and a higher-than-average rate of sufferers from depression and other mental illnesses. The other interesting thing, is that the youngest members of the family have not only abandoned cousin marriage but are enthusiastically exogamous, tending to marry Asians, Africans and South Americans.

  10. says

    All four of my grandparents come from the same small island in the Atlantic. I must be an inbred thoroughbred. (Too bad I don’t have any cousins I’d like to marry.)

  11. doublereed says

    Personally, that’s why I wouldn’t take consent off the table. To assume that incest occurs when people are mutually agreeable and enthusiastic seems to be immediately a bad position. And quite frankly, I think it’s more of a theoretical position instead of a realistic one.

    Of course, I’m thinking about how to look good and win the argument, not how to give the most comprehensive answer.

  12. Owlglass says

    The illustration of the issue using breeding of animals could be considered rhetorically and tactically unwise due to connotations of eugenics and human breeding. While facts are central to the argument, the presentation does matter a lot. Great many people seem to have a rather emotional approach to the world, where when something “feels wrong” their bias and dissonances spring up and devalue facts quickly, without really considering them. Hence a good speech or presentation makes an effort of inviting people to stroll along with the arguments. It then depends who is considered the target audience. It can be the opponent of the debate and their followers, it could be about getting reassurance from own followers, but more often it is (or should be) another third party. In this sense, its probably smarter to focus on “telling the world” how wrong these “fanatics” and “ideologues” are, in such a way that their claims also lose emotional traction and then “feel wrong”.

  13. trj says

    Yet another facile excuse some Christians use to defend the incest of the Bible is that it wasn’t forbidden until Moses laid it down as law (Lev. 18). So therefore it was- a-ok for Cain to impregnate his mother or sisters, and it was a-ok for righteous Lot to have sex with hos own daughters.

    So apparently there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with the act of incest. The only reason it’s wrong is because God says we shouldn’t do it. Should he change his mind incest will become entirely acceptable once again.

  14. Nick Gotts (formerly KG) says

    most states in the US allow second-cousin relationships, and some even allow first-cousin relationships – Mak, acolyte to Farore

    The USA is unusually restrictive. In the UK you can legally marry a first cousin, and I think that includes a double first cousin. You can legally have sex with, but not marry, a nephew or niece.

  15. Ogvorbis says

    The illustration of the issue using breeding of animals could be considered rhetorically and tactically unwise due to connotations of eugenics and human breeding

    In the United States, marriage between first cousins was considered normal (Edgar Allen Poe married his first cousin (she was 13 at the time)). Normal, that is, until the eugenic craze of the early 20th century extended the boundaries of unlawful consanguinity. On the other hand, the interpretation of the Catholic Church during parts of the High Middle Ages made even sixth-cousin unions incestuous (which worked nicely for the Church (with a big enough donation to the Church, the consanguinity could be ignored) and for the nobility of the time (with a big enough donation to the Church, the consanguinity could be ‘discovered’ and the inconvenient marriage annulled). Who can marry whom is a power game, not biology.

  16. says

    Money-heavy Islamistic propaganda organisation and its main man using quotemining tactics to make their enemies look bad. Color me shocked. Can we move on now and finally ignore Hamza “Ray Comfort” Tzortzis and his club of clowns? Please?

  17. Pierce R. Butler says

    Apparently, close relatives separated at very early ages often feel very strong sexual urges toward each other once reunited.

    Consider the case of siblings Patrick Stuebing and Susan Karolewski, who didn’t meet until adolescence/early adulthood, and immediately launched a romance. They had four children, three of whom suffered serious congenital defects, and fought continuously against German social agencies until Stuebing (who spent two years in jail over this) finally had a vasectomy.

  18. No One says

    Can we move on now and finally ignore Hamza “Ray Comfort” Tzortzis and his club of clowns? Please?

    I wouldn’t compare the two directly. The UCL Islamic Society, the on campus student organization that hosted the iERA debate was once chaired by the Detroit “underwear bomber”. Their language and underlying attitude is very different than that of Ray Comfort. I wouldn’t ignore Tzortzis, I would have him contained and “disarmed”.

  19. Matt Penfold says

    Apparently, close relatives separated at very early ages often feel very strong sexual urges toward each other once reunited.

    And people who are not related but are brought up as though they were siblings seldom experience sexual urges towards each other.

  20. says

    Eve was a clone of Adam? Wouldn’t that make Adam some kind of a hermaphrodite (I’d say Klinefelter’s, but they’re usually sterile)? Or maybe it was some kind of mosaic Klinefelter’s where his none of the cells in his rib had a Y chromosome.

    And then, if Eve and Adam were kind of the same person, wouldn’t that mean that Evangelicals shouldn’t really have a problem with masturbation?

  21. Pierce R. Butler says

    Correction to my # 18: Patrick Stuebing spent 14 months in prison for incest, not two years – a conviction upheld last year by the European Court of Human Rights.

  22. rowanvt says

    My lineages to create my line of Sweet Corns (snakes) and black pewters is going to look fairly similar to those charts. Reptiles in particular seem to be very hardy in the face of incest as the most common complications of extreme line breeding seem to be fertility and hatchling feeding issues. And that is part of the reason that I plan to bring in outside blood every few generations AND will not use as a breeder any animal that has a difficult start with regards to eating.

    And the arguments religious against incest fail utterly…. because we’re all still siblings according to them. ALL of us if the original pairs were siblings.

  23. cag says

    The catholic church does not have any problem with incest. How many times do we read about the rapes committed by “Father” X on his “children”?

  24. says

    I don’t understand why Krauss thinks its so important that they love each other. If it is consensual and they use protection I don’t see what the problem would be. Not my cup of tea though.

  25. scimaths says

    When children and adults grow up in close physical proximity to one another then, in healthy families at least, there is an unspoken contract not to violate or exploit the vunerability that goes along with having to share your space and a less well-defended self with others. This is why incest between family members that have grown and lived together is a problem – it is based on a breach of trust and exploitation of the weaker boundaries that are naturally there in the family unit.

    And has also been mentioned, adopted and foster children living together tend to develop the same sense of prohibition, but biological siblings raised seperately are less likely to.

  26. Sastra says

    I’ve read that sociologists have discovered that the incest taboo is internalized through a kind of “potty rule.” If you’re close enough to someone to regularly share a family potty with them before you are six years old or so, then they will always “feel” to you like a brother or sister when it comes to having sex. In other words, it will feel icky or wrong. You won’t be sexually attracted to them.

    Apparently they discovered this “rule” while messing around doing studies on children raised together in Israel kubbitzes and Indochinan child brides reared along with the future groom child (so the extended family would be harmonious.) The married couple didn’t want to mate.

    Religious rules against incest have less I think to do with inbreeding and control and more to do with explaining an “ick” reaction. It’s similar then to the taboo against homosexuality. It doesn’t appeal to the average person. Therefore, it must be “against nature.” God explains instinct.

  27. rinn says

    Did Hamza mention that Prophet Muhammad married off his daughter, Fatima, to his own cousin, Ali?

  28. anchor says

    Bonobos.

    Just sayin’, in case anyone thinks the human-directed animal pedigree examples PZ points out doesn’t or shouldn’t really count because it somehow isn’t ‘natural’, or doesn’t involve animals invested with complex biological, cognitive or cultural behavior comparable to humans.

    …And as PZ has frequently and recently reminded, sex isn’t just about reproduction.

    Like others here, I too fall into the “Eeeiuw, that’s ICKEEE!” camp, but my introspection can’t honestly extract a reason for it (besides the reproductive risks and social persecution) that can’t be consistently and entirely attributed to the cultural shaping of my tastes in my formative years.

  29. scimaths says

    It’s similar then to the taboo against homosexuality.

    No it isn’t.

    “Icky” can be a shorthand way of referring either to genuinely harmful relationships and behaviour or to cultural beliefs that some relationships or behaviour are wrong – even though there is no evidence for harm.

    Are you really trying to make the case that homosexuality is by its very nature a violation ?

  30. scimaths says

    failed formatting:

    quote: It’s similar then to the taboo against homosexuality.

    my reply: No it isn’t.“Icky” can be a shorthand way of referring either to genuinely harmful relationships and behaviour or to cultural beliefs that some relationships or behaviour are wrong – even though there is no evidence for harm.

    Are you really trying to make the case that homosexuality is by its very nature a violation ?

  31. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Are you really trying to make the case that homosexuality is by its very nature a violation ?

    I’m presuming the last sentence in #31 is a questions from Scimaths.

    No, Sastra doesn’t think homosexuality is bad. She’s explaining a bit about the possible psychology behind why a lot of folks think homosexual sex is “ickky”. Hence their deity, who is made in their image with their prejudices, is also against it.

  32. scimaths says

    I’m presuming the last sentence in #31 is a questions from Scimaths.

    It is, my formatting blipped.

    But I’m not quite sure how to answer your post. How is a culturaly invented taboo, (what’s more a taboo that is fabricated as part of a system to keep men as owners of women and women as their property) in anyway “similar to” a yuck reaction to actual genuine harm ?

    Or, put it another way: do you think that in the abscence of patriarchal religion that people would be instinctively homophobic ? Why would they be ? (I think they wouldn’t) But in contrast they still would be anti-incest as there is actual violation there, regardless of religious edicts or inventions.

  33. Sastra says

    scimaths #32 wrote:

    Are you really trying to make the case that homosexuality is by its very nature a violation ?

    No. As Nerd of Redhead clarifies (thanks), I’m just trying to explore the psychology of the religious.

    Why do so many people think that homosexuality and incest are wrong because they’re “unnatural?” They’re clearly not assuming that the acts are paranormal stunts or never found in the wild. Because so many of our instincts make sense (if the meat smells horrible, don’t eat it) there’s a strong tendency for people to automatically trust them. Nature = good and therefore whatever is unnatural is wrong and will feel wrong. They’re going with the naturalism fallacy and inventing moral Natural Laws.

    Tribalism, prejudice, and violence are often based on instincts, too. Doesn’t say anything about what is “natural” — or right.

  34. laurentweppe says

    If two siblings are mutually agreeable and enthusiastic, then the consent issue is suddenly off the table, and now how does a non-authoritarian argue against it?

    I’m not arguing in favor of forbiding things (my opinion is that once consent is established, authorities and uninvited neighbours are not welcome in the bedroom), but one has to wonder how little socialization with the outside world these hypothetical siblings have had to seek each others as lovers.

    ***

    unscrupulous nation could embark on a breeding program for athletic ability that would benefit from a multi-generation pattern of incest…

    Cough cough cough

    ***

    Allah didn’t seem to have a problem with Lot’s daughters date-raping him.

    It’s ok when it’s female on male

  35. scimaths says

    Why do so many people think that homosexuality and incest are wrong because they’re “unnatural?”

    Do you think that in the abscence of patriarchal religion that people would still be instinctively homophobic and anti-incest, either or both ?

  36. Sastra says

    scimaths #34 wrote:

    Or, put it another way: do you think that in the abscence of patriarchal religion that people would be instinctively homophobic ? Why would they be ? (I think they wouldn’t)

    Homophobic? No. Religion amplifies and justifies small tendencies which wouldn’t otherwise make much sense and which would be rationally discarded in the secular world.

    But I think do studies have shown (citation? nope) that even cross-culturally heterosexual people often have an instinctive “ick” reaction when thinking about sex with someone of the same sex. This doesn’t mean much of anything, since you could say the same about homosexuals and it need reflect no more than personal taste. It’s the religious who grab this and run with it into some sort of Natural Law placed into our hearts by God.

    But in contrast they still would be anti-incest as there is actual violation there, regardless of religious edicts or inventions.

    Not always, and I think that’s what Krauss was referring to. He was trying to remove all the exploitative aspects and consider only the hypothetical best-case scenarios. If two siblings in their 20’s spontaneously and freely decided they wanted to have sex — where’s the harm? We don’t like it (“ick”) — but when all is said and done it’s their choice. We wouldn’t want to arrest them.

    The Muslims would. They place a very high value on Purity — and they interpret purity in religious terms. They’re appalled that Krauss, an atheist, considers sin to be a matter of causing harm — instead of disobedience to God and going against the Natural Law he carefully placed in our instincts.

    (Of course they have to pick and choose which of our instincts is the Natural Law — since instincts can and do conflict.)

  37. chigau (違う) says

    I don’t know of any evidence that people are ” instinctively” homophobic and anti-incest.

  38. scimaths says

    sorry Sastra we are cross posting a bit. Ok

    “This doesn’t mean much of anything, since you could say the same about homosexuals and it need reflect no more than personal taste.”

    I guess I’m categorising a quite reasonable “hmm, not for me thanks” reaction as different to the “eeew totally gross” ickiness which is quite reasonably there in response to abuse, cruelty and so on. Not just different in intensity but in type. Religion and even secular culture may conflate the two but they are not the same.

    If two siblings in their 20′s spontaneously and freely decided they wanted to have sex — where’s the harm?

    I would make the case that there is harm. In a family where children have grown up together there are particular boundaries and vunerabilities just from the reality of being in close proximity to people and the structure of familial relationships. In a functional family those vunerabilities and relationships will not be exploited. In a dysfunctional family the relationships are exploited (by definition). That’s the problem.

  39. robro says

    That horse pedigree could be a good start for the pedigree of the heir apparent of England. Charles’s mother and father are 3rd cousins on Elizabeth’s side of the family and 2nd cousins on Philip’s side. It’s surprising that no one has mentioned the role of incest, both near and not-so-near, in aristocratic pedigrees…a practice that dates back at least 5000 years.

    And then there’s that whole business about whether Sarai was Abram’s sister, but then that’s fiction for you.

    Interestingly, Hamza is essentially describing an evolution of a moral law. I guess this means that Hamza believes in evolution and is a moral relativist to boot. Perhaps he should be tried for apostasy.

  40. laurentweppe says

    I don’t know of any evidence that people are ” instinctively” homophobic and anti-incest.

    Lots of people have an instinctively “ick” reaction as in “This does not turn Me on so imagining Myself involved in this type of intercourse revulses me on a visceral level.” That in itself does not make one an homophobe: it’s going from “I don’t want to do it myself” to “The mere thought that some people might be doing “It” disgust me so much that I want “It” to be forbidden to all, especially “It”‘s enthusiasts

    It’s not limited to sex: watching people eating haggis gives Me a “ick” reaction because I just can’t stand that dish and the idea of being Myself involved in eating some revulses me on a visceral level, but that does not make me some anti-haggis hater of Scots.

  41. Fred Salvador - Colonialist says

    Krauss’ point is of course correct, but in the context of a debate with religionists there’s a big difference between being correct and being right, and if you’re going to put yourself in a debate with these creatures you’d better make sure you know what that difference is. If you don’t, it’s the difference between sending the audience away with some food for thought and handing your opponent, whom you know is a mendacious little toad, a cheap soundbite. Krauss could’ve done better here, I feel.

    What’s amusing is that groan of disapproval from the audience, many of whom are likely of South Asian extraction; South Asia has a tradition of marrying second and third cousins to one another in the same way that European nobility do, and for much the same reasons (to keep the castes/classes ‘pure’ and make sure the inheritance apples can never fall far from the tree). Hypocrisy is a funny thing.

  42. Sastra says

    scimaths #40 wrote:

    I would make the case that there is harm. In a family where children have grown up together there are particular boundaries and vunerabilities just from the reality of being in close proximity to people and the structure of familial relationships.

    What about a family where the children have not grown up together?

    I’m pressing the point because I think that when you do press the point — when you do just keep on looking for that hypothetical ideal situation where all the reservations regarding exploitation and non-consent have been answered so that you have nothing left but “it’s wrong only because incest is wrong” — then you start to get the interesting philosophical shades of gray analysis which Krauss was trying to promote to this philosophically black-and-white crowd. There is a difference between secular ethical reasoning and religious moral absolutes. We often have to put in “well, it depends,” get case-dependent, and we look for harm. They don’t.

    I think I know just what Krauss was thinking about when he gave his answer to “why is incest wrong?” There was a study done a while back which tried to track the process of people’s moral reasoning by giving them dilemmas which “felt” wrong but carefully removed all harmful consequences. It included things like someone cleaning the toilet with an old American flag they were about to discard … and it also included an incest question with a “just this once” agreement between an adult brother and sister who were then described as happy afterwards with no emotional fallout or problems and nothing but a pleasant memory. It was kicking around the internet for a while. I wouldn’t be surprised if someone looked around and discovered it was discussed on Pharyngula. Tough questions.

    As PZ says, a nuanced and complicated sort of thing to bring up in a debate with fundamentalists who believe in firm authoritarian rules, honor, and Purity.

  43. scimaths says

    What about a family where the children have not grown up together?

    Then (as long as there has been sufficient distance) it’s a totally different dynamic. Said upthread #27

    “adopted and foster children living together tend to develop the same sense of prohibition, but biological siblings raised seperately are less likely to.”

    dilemmas … included things like someone cleaning the toilet with an old American flag they were about to discard … and it also included an incest question with a “just this once” agreement between an adult brother and sister who were then described as happy afterwards with no emotional fallout or problems and nothing but a pleasant memory.

    I’d be perfectly happy to wipe up any old mess with any flag. As to the incest example, the “just once and no emotional fallout” is setting up an unrealistic scenario. It’s not how healthy human beings operate. You could possibly ask the question “two very damaged people who ….” but that is a different scenario again.

    In reality when does incest actually happen ? Mostly 1) Plain old rape and abuse and rarely 2) estrangement and making a later adult connection. People brought up together in a healthy functional home suddenly deciding to do their siblings ? No.

  44. Pierce R. Butler says

    laurentweppe @ # 36: unscrupulous nation could embark on a breeding program for athletic ability that would benefit from a multi-generation pattern of incest… Cough cough cough

    Despite its provocative headline, that story says exactly zero about “breeding” athletes.

  45. emmet says

    Good grief. Myers’ citation for the Catholic POV is a random comment from a thread on a Catholic forum?
    Yep, that’s authoritative.
    Is he being lazy or duplicitous?

  46. Ichthyic says

    Good grief. Myers’ citation for the Catholic POV is a random comment from a thread on a Catholic forum?
    Yep, that’s authoritative.
    Is he being lazy or duplicitous?

    I notice though, that you don’t deny it.

    so, there are a billion catholics, and you are one that doesn’t think this way.

    Instead of wasting your efforts trying to project, why not spend that time trying to convince your church to actually adopt your personal PoV officially?

    too much work for you?

    ….yeah…