Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Anti-Incest Laws as Political Tools

I have noted before that laws and taboos against consanguinamory (consensual incest) have been used as a political tool for centuries. Accusing a political rival of "incest" plays upon sex-negative attitudes and "othering" someone.

Here's yet another example, this time from Kenya. It is a blind news item...
A well known politician who aspired for a big office has been forced to put his ambitions on hold. Reason? Elders from his village have threatened to go public and expose what they claim are his incestuous relations. The elders, who claim the man had sired a child with his own sister, walked into his house a month ago and told him to let go the seat or risk exposure. The man acquiesced to their demand.

We need to move past this kind of thing, and one way we will is by standing up and saying that someone's sexual orientation or the consensual sex they enjoy does not indicate they will be a bad leader. When someone tries to tear down a political candidate or tried get someone fired from their job by talking about who she or he loves, tell the bigot we are not selecting our own sexual partner, we are selecting someone to do a job, and that a person's love life, as long as they aren't being a hypocrite and trying to restrict the love lives of others, is nobody's concern.
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