wrote at salon.com to let you know that she thinks the term "Genetic Sexual Attraction" is just an excuse people who love each other use for... uh... loving each other. How dare they!!! She takes journalists to task for not doing more research. And we agree! For example, it is not acceptable for a newspaper to report that someone has been charged with "incest" without clarifying what that means.
Anyway, on to this piece at salon.
She references the viral news item about Monica and Caleb as her starting point.
But Mares and Peterson are defending themselves by claiming that it’s not incest, but something called “genetic sexual attraction.”GSA can lead to "incestuous sex," yes. That doesn't mean GSA isn't a thing. Yet the writer goes on to mock the term Genetic Sexual Attraction in various ways.
A “standard definition”? Offering statistics, even as an “estimate”? Other media coverage used words like “phenomenon” or “raising awareness” — language that implies that genetic sexual attraction is a measurable, demonstrable reality, as opposed to some half-baked pseudoscientific nonsense that people dreamed up to justify continuing unhealthy, abusive relationships.Many GSA relationships are healthy and not abusive at all. So no, it isn't about that.
It didn’t take much digging for me to discover that genetic sexual attraction is not the scientifically determined phenomenon that its proponents portray it as, starting with the fact that the vast majority of these stories have been percolating out of tabloid publications like the Daily Mail and not from legitimate news sources.So if something appears in publications this writer doesn't esteem as opposed to publications for which this writer has high regard, that means it doesn't exist? The US tabloid National Inquirer has run with many stories other sources haven't that have turned out to be true. A lack of coverage doesn't mean something doesn't exist. As far as I know, the New York Times has never reported on this writer's love life or her kindness to puppies. Does that mean those things don't exist? ABC News and other reputable newsrooms have documented cases of GSA. (Though I have a suspicion this writer would attack any such coverage as distasteful. She should ask herself honestly if she would write against such coverage and if she would, she should see her circular reasoning.)
A better way to put it is that there is no real research supporting the notion that sharing genes with someone makes you more likely to want to have sex with them.Not true!
But research can be hard to come by when people get thrown in prison for being reported or outed.
I couldn’t find any studies or mentions of this supposed phenomenon in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or scientific articles with an in-depth look at it.So all of the things that weren't in the fourth, third, second, and first editions didn't exist until they were listed in the subsequent manuals? And let's be clear. We're not talking about a disorder. We're talking about something that is a normal, natural reaction to the circumstances. Not a reaction every person in the same circumstances has, but a normal reaction anyway.
Next, she attacks Barbara Gonyo, then goes on to Discredited Argument #8.
Moving along, she attacks a father-daughter GSA couple who was in the news in early 2015.
She’s only 18.So the writer doubts 18-year-olds can consent to sex. Or maybe just 18-year-old women.
He groomed her sexually by pretending he was just cuddling or playing.The writer insults people who were actually groomed into child abuse. Nice.
She was a virgin when they first had sex.Now virgins can't consent to sex. That's going to put a lot of people into a closed loop.
This writer is a politics writer, trying to label GSA as pseudoscience instead of science. Certainly someone who is a political writer for Salon knows better than people who've observed people experiencing GSA and studied the issue for many years now, right?
If you'd like to contact her, she's on Twitter @AmandaMarcotte
I have to wonder why someone would go out of their way to hurt people who aren't hurting anyone else and are already being persecuted.
Different words are needed for different things. Clearly, there is a big difference between:
1) A drunken father raping a minor daughter.
2) Adult siblings who've always shared a life falling in love.
3) Two people who never met until they were adults experiencing an overwhelming attraction.
She might want to label all three as simply "incest" but that's like calling rape, consensual intercourse, and WANTING to have sex "penetration." Descriptive words and different terms for clearly different things are helpful, aren't they?
Not all GSA situations involve sex. However, even when it does involve sex, by definition the people involved were not raised together or by one another, so were not socialized and bonded as family while growing up. It might be classified as incest in law and biologically, but it isn’t incestuous socially.
GSA describes a specific experience that does not involve people who have been socialized as family; sex may or may not be involved. GSA-initiated consanguinamory is different from sociological incest.
Whatever it is called, or however CONSENTING ADULTS are brought together, notice that she didn't give any good reason to discrimination against, persecute, or prosecute consenting adults for having sex with each other, loving each other, or marrying. She's not alone, because there isn't any good reason. Rather than calling for decriminalization, which would aid in research, or offering help, she used her platform to further attack people who are already facing prison time and getting death threats for doing nothing more than falling in love.
UPDATE: Here is Jane's brilliant analysis.