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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Few Reactions in Kenya to Court Ruling

We recently noted that a judge in Kenya pointed out that Kenya does not have laws criminalizing sex between cousins. To follow up on that news, Ruth Nyambura at allafrica.com collected opinions against the court finding from people who aren't lawyers, judges, or legislators. Seems legit.

First up to say the judge, who made a legally (and ethically) connect ruling, got it wrong is a chaplain...

Daystar University's Chaplain Jeremiah Obura said a lot of what is happening is out of influence from the western culture where they do all sorts of weird things and people copy for the sake of it.
Right. Uhm, western culture didn't invent sex between first cousins. It's been going on for all of human history.
He quoted the Bible the book of Leviticus Chapter 18 verse six which states: "No one is to approach any close relative to have sexual relations, I am the Lord. There is no debate on this issue. Based on the scriptures it is not right and it rules out."
1. I was unaware that present-day Kenya is ancient Israel, subject to the laws of ancient Israel. If so, well, there's a whole lot of other laws I'm sure Obura is breaking.

2. In those laws for ancient Israel, prohibitions on cousins getting together are NOT THERE. If this guy bothers to read his Bible, he knows that.

3. The Bible, subsequent to this passage, depicts marriages between cousins in a positive light.

4. Kenya shouldn't be a theocracy.

A business man in Ngara James Mwangi said he could not understand how the court would come up with a decision like that and even the bible itself is so clear that it is wrong.
It's a present-day Kenyan court, not a court in ancient Israel.
Jacob Odhiambo a tout in one of the routes in Nairobi said that no matter how the judge tried to put it, it does not make sense for a cousin to sleep with another cousin as they are of the same blood.
How would that mean it wouldn't "make sense?" These people just make stuff up and then insist everyone else has to agree.
He explained that in their culture it is a taboo and even a curse to sleep with your relatives.
"It does not sound like a normal thing, what will your children think?"
1. What if you never have children?

2. Children really don't care as long as they are being raised by someone who loves them.

3. It is a normal thing, if human history is any indication of what is normal for humans.
A Doctor by the name Naomi James said it is not a good thing for it to be made legal because there are possibilities of children born out of parents who are cousins to have physical or mental abnormalities.
She explained that first cousins are two-times more likely to bear offspring with a birth defect than children born of couples who don't share a common grandparents. If cousin couples happen to be carrying known genetic diseases, the risks faced by their offspring can jump.
"Two-times more likely" sounds like bad odds until you realize a 2% chance is "two-times more likely" than a 1% chance.  Surely the doctor knows people have sex for reasons other than making babies? And that they let people with obvious, serious genetic diseases have sex? And that there are people who will have sex but not have babies? See here for more. Also, it wasn't "made legal," it has been legal, and the judge simply applied the law.

I wonder if these people were asked, "How does it hurt you if other people have sex or marry?"

Again, we see there is no good reason to deny consenting adults their rights.

Keep your laws  simple. Let adults share love, sex,  residence, and marriage (or any of those without the others) with any and all consenting adults, without fear of prosecution, bullying, or discrimination.
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