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Thursday, November 29, 2018

Attention Outgoing State Governors

There are state Governors in the US who are rapidly approaching the end of their terms as Governor and will be leaving that office.

We are respectfully imploring you to use your executive powers to pardon any of your residents convicted of crimes due to having consensual (to be redundant) sex with an adult under anti-incest laws, whether they are currently in the justice system or not, even if they have since passed away,

Let's be clear. We're not talking about assault or child molestation. We're talking about sex between consenting adults (or between minors close in age to each other), still criminalized in your states. The laws should be changed, but since they haven't been yet, please have mercy on these people.

This plea is directed at the following Governors:

Matt Mead - Wyoming
Scott Walker - Wisconsin
Bill Haslam - Tennessee
Dennis Daugaard - South Dakota
Jerry Brown - California
John Hickenlooper - Colorado
Dannel Malloy - Connecticut
Rick Scott - Florida
Nathan Deal - Georgia
Butch Otter - Idaho
Bruce Rauner - Illinois
Jeff Colyer - Kansas
Paul LePage - Maine
Rick Snyder - Michigan
Mark Dayton - Minnesota
Brian Sandoval - Nevada
Susana Martinez - New Mexico
John Kasich - Ohio
Mary Fallin - Oklahoma

If we've missed an outgoing Governor, we apologize.


This plea is also directed at Governors of US territories: If you have the power to do so, pardon or at least commute the sentences of those listed as criminals due to consanguineous affections.

If you are the Governor or someone on the Governor's staff, or someone with access to the Governor, please act quickly to get this done. We know time is very limited.

There is no good reason these people should suffer any more for having had a physical relationship.

Let's stop wasting public resources on treating these people like they are a threat to anyone. If they were convicted of additional crimes relating to the investigation, their arrest, prosecution, etc., please consider pardoning them of those, too.

Do the kind, merciful, and just thing as you end your term as Governor. Get on the right side of history!

Please pardon!
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Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Tale as Old as Time

This blog is about relationship rights for all adults, especially the right to marry any and all consenting adults. It is not about criticizing nor promoting any philosophy towards religion, spiritual considerations, superstitions, the paranormal or supernatural, any religious text or writings/traditions/beliefs/practices/systems/organizations considered sacred, inspired, of authoritative by some, nor skepticism when it comes to such things.

There are both allies and opponents of relationship rights and full marriage equality in just about every religion and among those who claim no religion, and I welcome allies no matter what tradition, if any, they prefer or reject.

With that out of the way…

Considering the Bible as literature, which anyone can do whether they are a devout Christian, a Deist, a Hindu, an Atheist, or an Antitheist or take some other path, one can see that the Bible implies, outright portrays, and further addresses consanguineous sex.

Frequently, someone will ask “Where did Cain get his wife?” or “Did Adam and Eve’s children have sex with each other?” or some variation. Whether someone considers this speculation about fanciful myths or actual history is irrelevant to analyzing what the text itself says.

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Saturday, November 24, 2018

Consanguineous Couples Wanted

Rarely do couples involved in consanguinamory have offers to tell their stories to a wide audience in a way that protects their anonymity and it done with a friendly producer. Of course you can always have the story of your relationship featured in text here on this blog, but the people behind a project we called attention to here also want to hear from you about having your story told via video.

From our friends working on that project...

I’d like to shoot a series of small video "vignettes"; quick interviews with adults who are in real life, day to day committed relationships with a family member.
The logistics of this would have to take place in the Midwestern US. We would have an iron-clad understanding in place that would protect everyone’s identity and that EVERYTHING would be strictly confidential. We can carefully build that trust by emails, texts, or whatever platform you are comfortable with. I know this will take time, and that’s something I am more than happy putting into this.
So if you're and adult in a romantic/sexual relationship with a consenting close relative and are willing to at least consider working with a friendly producer, contact Kirok via email: kirok411 at protonmail dot com
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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today, especially, we remember transgender people killed by hatred and ignorance. It's the Transgender Day of Remembrance.

For all transgender people reading this:

We value you. You are valid. You deserve to live your life free of prejudice, free of being attacked for who you are.

We are going to help make things better sooner rather than later.
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Sunday, November 18, 2018

Hate Adds Pain to Genetic Sexual Attraction and GSA Relationships

I'm bumping up this entry I wrote a while back because there are people who need to see it.

Genetic Sexual Attraction (GSA) is a condition that may be experienced when close genetic relatives who have been separated for significant amounts of time, often since birth or before puberty, are reunited or introduced. It describes an intense physical and/or emotional attraction, and may include sexual attraction or be expressed through sex. The attraction may or may not be mutual. Even if mutual, not all GSA results in sexual contact. (Some people prefer the term "Genetic Attraction.")

Reading accounts or watching documentaries about those struggling with GSA feelings or related actions can be heartbreaking. There are many reasons as to why.

First of all, there are all of the problems that come with any attraction or any relationship. One person is attracted to someone else and that attraction is not mutual, or is mutual only for period of time. Relationships involve at least two different people who are trying to get along with each other and to deal with those outside the relationship as well. This can all be increased when the individuals are biologically related.

This new attraction and resulting relationship can bring change, disruption, and uncertainty to someone’s life, which is again something that may happen in general relationships as well, but can be more of an issue with biological relatives and the strong pull of GSA. This is especially a problem when someone has made a life and perhaps has existing vows with someone else. For example, a married, monogamous woman who gets in contact with a biological half-brother and finds herself strongly attracted to him and wanting to spend time with him, with or without sex. The time and attention taken from her marriage may be enough of a problem, but add sexual cheating to the mix, and it is even worse. She may love and value her husband, but feels this intense connection or draw to her half-brother that must be suppressed if she wants to have a chance to save her marriage. In that case, either choice is painful. Or what if she doesn’t want to save her marriage? What if it was dying before the GSA issue surfaced? Divorce is usually a painful experience anyway.

Some people experiencing GSA are disturbed by their feelings (or the feelings of their relative) because they feel a need to have that person in their life as a sibling, a parent, or a child, and they see sexual attraction or sex as incompatible with that role. They may feel like they finally had something they were missing for so long, only to have it taken away by unexpected or unwanted feelings and resulting tensions. Just the unfamiliar nature of these feelings may be bothersome.

In addition to all of the usual problems someone with an unrequited attraction or a mutual attraction between people can bring, one that is different with GSA is, of course, the legal, familial, social, and religious prohibitions imposed against sex with and marriage to close relatives. Incest between consenting adults is still criminalized in many places, including most US states, and bigotry against people in such relationships or experiencing such attraction continues to be perpetuated, sometimes in the most hateful and harmful ways.

This is sometimes compounded by a lack of solidarity. Even if there is a GSA relationship that didn’t break up any existing families, marriages, or relationships, and the individuals are happy together and able to share their lives in a functional way despite legal and social challenges, they may be rebuffed or judged when they reach out for understanding and support from others. Other people experiencing GSA who have decided not to have sexual relationship or have ended a sexual relationship or want to end their sexual relationship may disapprove of those who want to engage in or continue their sexual relationship. Or, if the GSA relationship is intergenerational, interracial [biracial with non-biracial], same-sex, or polyamorous, other people experiencing GSA may express disapproval based on one of those factors (in addition to all of the other people who disapprove based on those factors). Finally, those who have recently struggled or are still struggling for their own freedom to marry or just the basic freedom of association, such as LGBT people or poly people, may express contempt for consanguineous sex and love, including in cases where GSA is factor, or may be unsupportive of those in GSA relationships gaining the freedom to marry. Thus, instead of finding comfort from those who have also been targeted by those who want to control the sexuality of other adults, people experiencing GSA may find some more vitriol or at least a cold shoulder.

All of these things can bring pain and hardship to GSA relationships. Laws and public attitudes can be changed. There is some help for those struggling to deal with their feelings or the feelings of someone else or just to be themselves, but that help would be greatly aided by a change in the laws and public attitudes. That is one reason I call for solidarity. Someone who is struggling with GSA does not need the added burden of laws and finger-wavers that treat them as second-class citizens or with hate and impede their ability to make decisions in the best interest of themselves and their loved ones.

For help, see here.

[Edited for typing errors and clarity.]
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Saturday, November 17, 2018

Thanksgiving Time

This US national holiday always falls on the fourth Thursday of November.

Thanksgiving Day is a huge holiday in the US, centered mainly around a special family meal. In case you haven't noticed, Americans like to eat a lot. Since Thanksgiving is always on a Thursday, Friday is a holiday as well (at least as far as the government is concerned). Because Thanksgiving is considered to specifically be about family togetherness, it can be a painful time for those who have been rejected by their family because of their gender identity, sexual orientation, relationship orientation, or choice in partner(s). Some LGBTQ people, polyamorous people, and those in consanguineousintergenerational, or interracial relationships are reminded every year that even their own family hates them.

Some people make the best of this and plan a Thanksgiving meal with friends. I throw out a special “good for you” to anyone who hosts such a meal this holiday. Keep up the good work. I think such gatherings are much more enjoyable anyway. If you don't have one to go to, consider hosting your own!

But I also have words for anyone who has driven away or banned someone in their family because of that other family member’s identity, orientation or partner(s): Shame on you. You don’t have to like your family member’s sexuality or how they live. But you should reach out to them and support them instead of driving them away. Every person at that table does things you don’t like. Why single out a family member for punishment because of who they love? If your family member has a partner whose family is more accepting, guess who is going to win? Guess who is going to get to play with any grandkids/nieces/nephews? Not you. Think about it. Maybe it isn't too late to make amends and have them over for this year's holiday. This might help.

If you can’t go “home” for Thanksgiving and you are feeling down and you haven’t managed to make plans with friends, consider hosting your own Thanksgiving and invite some friends. Or, volunteer at a homeless shelter or some other charity location that will be helping people that day. Don’t allow sadness or loneliness to take hold. You can find a place where you will be welcomed.

Do you have any special plans for this holiday week? Are you going to be coming out, or trying to start or rekindle something with someone special? You can comment (anonymously, if you'd like) below or write an email at fullmarriageequality at protonmail dot com.
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Wednesday, November 14, 2018

A Note From a Therapist

This was a comment left on the blog I wanted to highlight.
I am a psychotherapist who specializes in working with clients who struggle with "taboo" sexualized thoughts and behaviors. I'm currently working on research dealing with consensual familial intimate relationships. I offer online therapy as well as in-person and I accept most major insurance. I'm licensed in Georgia and Maryland. 
Keya Johnson, MSW, LCSW, CCTP, CSOTP 
therapist.keya@gmail.com

I communicated privately with this person and they do not discourage adults who are happily enjoying sexual relationships with other adults and everything along those lines stays private with them.

So please consider helping with the research, and if you need a therapist who won't automatically dismiss your relationships or desires, this may be someone for you.
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Monday, November 12, 2018

Marriage Doesn't Have to be Monogamous


More and more people are questioning whether the polygamous freedom to marry should continue to be denied anywhere. At the forum community.babycentre.co.uk, MonaVanderwaal asked...
Should marrying more than one person be allowed in the UK?
Yes!
At the moment it is a crime punishable for up to seven years in prison.
Do you think it is an outdated law?
It's a ridiculous and unjust law.
If three+ people could prove they are happy in the arrangement, would this change your mind?
Visibility is important, but this is a basic matter of freedom of association. People have a fundamental right to marry. Some people are polyamorous or otherwise want more than one spouse. If all are consenting adults, there's no good reason to deny them their rights. You don't need to be aware of the polyamorous people around you who are in happy, long-term relationships to understand that all adults should have their rights.

Let's look at a few of the responses.

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Saturday, November 10, 2018

These Are Not Arguments

This has been added to our Discredited Arguments page, which you'll find to be very helpful in answering the usual arguments that are really flimsy attempts to justify prejudice.

NOT EVEN ARGUMENTS: 1) Labeling or describing something, even accurately, is NOT an argument. For example, saying "That's homosexuality!" does not make a claim as to why it shouldn't be allowed or why it should be discriminated against. 2) Stating an opinion, such as that something is "wrong" or "immoral" is not an argument, either. It indicates WHAT someone thinks, but not WHY. 3) Claiming to have made an accurate prediction that someone would want their rights, such as "I said this would happen!" isn't an argument. 4) Appealing to the very law in question, by saying "It's illegal!" isn't an argument (and, it isn't always true, either, depending on location.) The very thing being argued is whether something should be illegal or otherwise discriminated against.


Here's the full page.
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Monday, November 5, 2018

We Will Win

It's very sad when we see reports, either personal and private or in the news media, of lovers facing persecution and prosecution for the "crime" of being closely related adults. The same "crime" can mean having their children taken from them. The ignorant and mean-spirited jokes and harassment are bad enough. Having your own government discriminate against you and treat you like a criminal because of sexual affection and love is outrageous. Still, lovers in the US and similar countries are better off than those in places on the planet where they could be executed.

The good news, though, is that we're making progress, the laws will be changed and we're going to win, and in the meantime, it is heartwarming to know that the overwhelming majority of people enjoying consanguinamorous relationships are never criminally prosecuted. While the mere existence of the discriminatory laws against consensual  adult relationships is a problem, it is a wonderful thing that most consanguineous lovers are never charged under the "incest" laws.

Whether you're an ally or a bigoted hater, like it or not, not far from where you are right now, is the passion and bliss of consanguinamory, with lovers sharing affection, and there's nothing that can be done to stop them. People of all genders, orientations, races, and classes are loving their close relative(s), snuggling up together, holding hands, kissing, having intercourse, expressing their care for each other in countless ways.

And no hater can stop them.

You have neighbors, friends, maybe someone in your family, co-workers, classmates, maybe a performing artist you admire, maybe your doctor, maybe your accountant, maybe the paramedic who helped you, maybe your bus driver, maybe one of your educators or students, who have experience with consanguinamory. They might still be involved.

And it is highly unlikely any hater will stop them.

Some of them may never come out to you. Some of them may never come out to anyone. It's their choice. Just like their sex life and relationships. Some will keep living happily as they have.
But the laws will be replaced by equality, and the prejudices will be rightly discarded to the ash heap of history. We're going to make that happen sooner rather than later, because there's no good reason to deny relationship rights to all consenting adults.

We will win!
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What About Donor-Conceived People Getting Together?


The National Infertility and Adoption Education Organization has a Question and Answer about “Accidental Incest between Donor Conceived People.”
Q: How worried should I be about inadvertent partnering of two donor conceived half siblings from the same donor?
The main worry is an artificial one... undue criminalization of such relationships.

From their answer...
While the fear is understandable, many professionals believe the fear is not well founded. For example, we asked this question to Ole Schou, founder and CEO of Cryos International sperm banks, who has researched and spoke to professional groups on this issues. [Note that he is not a native English speaker.]

“There is no reason to be concerned about accidental incest between donor conceived children/adults. The risk is extremely low. Professionals call the risk consanguinity or inbreeding. It is also described as incest. However, this word is surrounded by many taboos and connected to something morally wrong, and is not the best word to use in this situation.
I agree.
The concern is for the increase in recessive DNA disorders in children where the parents DNA are too closely matched. Remember that all humans have plenty of these recessive genes (C.J. Bell 2011).

However, the risk may only be increased some few percentage in comparison to normal procreation. So this is not much. It is more a problem if it continues generation after generation.
That is what we’ve been saying.
This is not relevant for donors as it is only a one generation issue.

Further, the risk that two half siblings from the same donor meet each other is generally very little if the sperm bank distribute internationally or worldwide.
It might be tempting for someone working for a sperm bank to claim that if a donor-conceived person walks into a room with 100 people in it, one conceived from the same donor, and chooses one person to approach, there is only a 1% chance it will be their half-sibling (if we’re talking egg or sperm donation, full sibling if we’re talking donated embryos). However, there odds are probably going to be much higher because of the shared genes. That is one reason Genetic Sexual Attraction happens. Sharing genes can cause people to be strongly attracted to each other. This is going to happen more and more as more and more people, for reasons including donation as well as many other reasons, are raised apart from close genetic relatives.

Donors are often screened for genetic problems, so that is a plus for avoiding problems.

Anyway, it is interesting to see what they had to say about risks to children born of consanguineous parents.

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Saturday, November 3, 2018

What Genealogists Know

With each previous generation you trace back, the maximum possible number of your genetic ancestors doubles. You can have 2 parents, up to 4 grandparents, up to 8 great-grandparents, up to 16 great-great-grandparents, etc.

On average, there are about four generations per century. For people born in the year 2000, their 8 great-great-grandparents were probably born around 1900. Sometime around 1800 their great-great-great-great-great-great-grandparents were born (there may be up to 128 of them). About 29 generations back, or roughly around the time of 1250-1300, the total number of your possible ancestors for that generation equals or exceeds the total population of the planet, which was about 500 million people.

What gives? Well, first of all, if all 500 million of those people were your ancestors, they would also be the ancestors of all of the rest of us, too.

Secondly, you probably don’t have every person alive back then as your ancestor. There wasn’t a lot of interracial or intercultural parenting going on back then. People were more isolated, more people lived in rural countrysides rather than dense urban areas, and people were not nearly as geographically or socially mobile as they are today. It was very common for a person to be born in and to die in the the same village or town, having lived all of her or his life there.

This means that for many, many, many, many generations, there was a lot of what most people would call today “inbreeding.” If your spouse wasn’t your first cousin, your spouse was likely a second or third cousin, or a second cousin-once removed, or even your double-cousin, etc. And as I’ve noted before, even if they weren’t marrying them, people were having children with siblings, aunts or uncles, etc. (Even if not having children together, what do you think went on, given that pubescent teens, like most children, were usually sharing a bedroom?) Not only did these things not destroy humanity, but in Europe, the Renaissance was birthed in these conditions.

Coming back to around 1800, very few people are likely to have 128 great-great-great-great-great-great-grandparents, just like very few of those people in 1800 had 128 of them in 1600. Because chances are, some of your recent ancestors were cousins, if not closer. If you marry your first cousin, you have no more than six genetic grandparents between you, instead of eight. If your parents are first cousins, you have six great-grandparents instead of eight.

If “inbreeding” was as detrimental as common misconception says, none of us would be here.

 
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