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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Incest Laws in Oregon

Law enforcement authorities get all kinds of calls asking if something is legal or illegal, and it doesn’t make the news. But this time it did.

The caller had questions about first cousins “being together.” Turns out while incest is a Class C felony and defined as marriage or sex between an immediate family member (mother/son, sister/brother) or any half-relation such as half-brother. Beyond that, the law is up for interpretation.

The Oregon Revised Statute describes the above as incest, but also “a person whom the person knows to be related to the person ... as an ancestor, descendant.” It is the “ancestor, descendant” section that is ill-defined within the law. The deputy advised the caller that the couple is in the clear as long as they are second cousins or more distant. Anything closer could be referred to the district attorney’s office for interpretation.

It would be a waste for the sheriff or the district attorney or any court to spend resources punishing people for consensual sex, regardless of their relation. Not only should people be free to have such relationships, but they should have the freedom to marry as well. First cousins can marry in some states. Why would Oregon prosecute them for having sex?

A candidate for Kansas Governor has proposed having a person whose job it is to find bad or outdated laws to repeal. Oregon and every other state should have one of those, and one of the things they should do is propose the repealing of any law designed to punish consensual sex. It doesn’t matter if they are the same sex. It doesn’t matter if they are sisters. It doesn’t matter if they are three sisters and a male friend. It should not be something for the law to stop.

I hope the caller wasn't calling from their own number.
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10 comments:

  1. my X wife has been living as a couple with my son in Oregon since he was 15 and he is now 26. what can I do to prosecute my x wife. child services dosent care because I didnt have pictures

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    Replies
    1. She is his biological mother? If the authorities don't care there is nothing you can legally do. They are consenting adults now anyway.

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  2. Does an uncle (age 42) commit incest when he suduces and has sex with his neice age 18-19

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are they related through blood or marriage? I'm not sure if Oregon makes a distinction. However, if the 18-19 year-old consents, it should NOT be illegal (even if Oregon laws still make it illegal.) I call that consanguinamory.

      Delete
  3. Does cousin marriage considered illegal for immigration purpose? Our marriage happened to be cousin marriage and it's legal in our country, please advice...

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous, about half of US states will marry first cousins. I'm reasonably certain cousin marriages from outside the country are recognized in the US for immigration purposes.

      Delete
  4. Can a half uncle who is 29 be together with his 19 year old niece he just met for the first time in oregon?????

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    Replies
    1. My guess is that the laws in Oregon would be against that, even though it happens all of the time. It is a matter of whether or not someone complains to the authorities, or self-incrimination, as in one of you crosses paths with law enforcement on another matter and admit you are together and your relation to each other. Since you just met, it might be a matter of Genetic Sexual Attraction and you should see my page here on this blog with that title.

      Delete
  5. What about father daughter if they are consenting adults and never knew each other until the daughter was 20

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    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, the ridiculous laws in Oregon and most states don't allow for her to make her own decisions as an adult. Only the states of Rhode Island and New Jersey don't criminalize such relationships as of this writing. Many other countries also allow for such relationships. Please contact me at fullmarriageequality at Protonmail dot com for more information relating to your specific situation.

      Delete

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