Is incest immoral?
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28-11-2014, 07:29 AM
Is incest immoral?
I'd like to know a bunch of opinions on this topic, as I recently watched a debate with Lawrence Krauss where at one point he defends the position that it is not immoral.

I think I agree. It appears incest has become taboo and immoral in societies because of the threat it poses to offspring through deformity etc. So it hinders progression in said societies. This all seems reasonable. However, Krauss says that if a brother and sister were to genuinely love each other, and use contraception, then he can see no immorality within the action of them having sexual relations.

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28-11-2014, 08:04 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
I've seen the debate where Krauss said that and a couple of later videos where we talked about it. Studies show that people are normally less attracted to close relatives (info) so incest seems to raise the same kind of "ick" factor that homosexuality raises in heterosexuals. The dangers of inbreeding are well documented so it makes sense that evolution would favor species that avoid it.

On whether or not it is immoral though I think I have to agree with Krauss. If the question of potential children is removed and the relationship is consensual then who are they harming? If there is no harm then it is, at worst, amoral.

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28-11-2014, 08:30 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
This is one of those social taboos I never understood. I'd kind of get it if having kids was still something expected of everyone, but that seems to be fading away, and we have so many ways to avoid having them, it always seems like a moot point.

I expect it to become accepted eventually.

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28-11-2014, 08:41 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
Ask the Fritzls

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28-11-2014, 09:20 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
(28-11-2014 08:41 AM)The Germans are coming Wrote:  Ask the Fritzls

Different subject altogether, you silly billy.

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28-11-2014, 11:34 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
I've seen this debate here on the forum before. Most people were rather ok with non reproducing incest. Some folks pointed out - there's really no way to stop brothers and sisters from having babies. They are in love, what if they decide they want to have kids? Their bodies/lives after all.

I think it kind of went back and forth for a while with thinks like, well we can't stop people from having kids if they want them, that's immoral. Then, well it's not like everyone is going to decide to fall in love with their siblings, so it's likely to affect a very small portion of our population, who cares if they have a few deformed babies? Then I think... Well.... Kind of sucks for the kids, knowingly bringing them into a world where they are likely to not have a very good life. Then... We do have tests to identify some birth defects in the womb, a lot of those people decide to continue with pregnancy so..


I'm torn on the subject. A very very tricky and intricate issue.

I hope that the world turns, and things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that, even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you, I love you. With all my heart, I love you. - V for Vendetta
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28-11-2014, 11:39 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
The only way it's morally consistent to ban siblings from having children is to ban people with hereditary diseases from reproducing as well.

For the record, I would ban no sexual activity that consenting adults get up to in private.

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28-11-2014, 11:46 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
Agreed, Elder. And while it would be morally consistnat I don't know that I agree it is moral.

I hope that the world turns, and things get better. But what I hope most of all is that you understand what I mean when I tell you that, even though I do not know you, and even though I may never meet you, laugh with you, cry with you, or kiss you, I love you. With all my heart, I love you. - V for Vendetta
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28-11-2014, 11:52 AM
RE: Is incest immoral?
It's not so much that incest might be immoral rather, Confused kinda creepy.

Inbreeding doesn't help a species - it hinders the chances of survival- so we are hardwired to discourage this behavior, though it may indeed seem somewhat natural to find such familiarity attractive.

So yes, not so much immoral, just creepy. Shy

Does it help to know that famously, FDR & Elenor were cousins? As were Edgar Alan Poe & his wife... or does that just provide more creepy? Undecided

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28-11-2014, 12:21 PM
RE: Is incest immoral?
Most cases of criminal incest are actually sexual assault, in that there are issues of consent and exploitation. To get that out of the way.

Consenting adults can do whatever the fuck they want, no?

"B..b..but - risk factors!" is a terrible, terrible argument. There are self-evidently many other risk factors society lays absolutely no restriction upon (age, radiation exposure, known hereditary conditions, etc), and this smacks of purely post-hoc rationalisation.
(I mean, it seems gross to me, too, but there are plenty of legal consensual sex acts I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole...)

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