Love is love?
Advocates for “consensual incest” are firmly behind the cause of an unnamed New York parent who is seeking a marriage with their own adult child.
The New Yorker looking to tie the knot with their own child says that they have the right under the grounds of “individual autonomy.”
The parent has chosen to stay anonymous, because what they are looking for is “an action that a large segment of society views as morally, socially and biologically repugnant,” court papers say.
“Through the enduring bond of marriage, two persons, whatever relationship they might otherwise have with one another, can find a greater level of expression, intimacy and spirituality,” the parent contended in the Manhattan federal court claim filed on April 1.
Legal papers filed so far provide only the vaguest of glimpses at the couple-to-be, intentionally withholding details on their genders, ages, hometowns, or the nature of their unconventional relationship.
“The proposed spouses are adults,” according to the filing. “The proposed spouses are biological parent and child. The proposed spouses are unable to procreate together.”
Australian Richard Morris, an advocate who has taken up the cause to change incest laws in nearly 60 different countries, said that he is backing the legal battle in Manhattan Federal Court and that any relationship between consenting adults, even when they’re related, “should not be criminalized.”
Morris and other proponents of the taboo cause have spearheaded roughly 130 petitions, mostly launched on change.org, looking to update incest laws around the globe. Most of their efforts have not ignited the groundswell of support for which the activists were hoping.
“We haven’t moved any mountains yet,” he lamented to The New York Post.
Morris decided to become the hero who was willing to fight on behalf of people in consenting incestual partnerships, he explained, after hearing about a case in Scotland where an estranged father and daughter were reunited, only to start a relationship before being criminally convicted.
Morris says that standing up for real “marriage equality” is “the right thing to do, isn’t it?”
“It seems to be as unjust as the law that used to imprison gay people, and the law that used to stop people of different races marrying,” he continued.
Keith Pullman, the man behind the blog Full Marriage Equality, also applauded the progressive New York lawsuit.
“It is absurd to say that an adult can’t consent to marry their parent. That same adult can be sent to war, take on six or seven figures of debt, operate heavy machinery, be sentenced to death by a federal court, and consent to sex with five strangers (and marriage with one of them) but can’t consent to marry someone they love?” he said to The Post.
“In some of these cases, the genetic parent didn’t raise them and they met for the first time two years ago. Allegations of ‘grooming’ are laughable attempts to deny someone their rights even though it will have no impact on the person objecting.”
Currently under New York law, incestious relationships or activities of the same are a third-degree felony, with a penalty of up to four years in prison, and incestuous marriages are considered invalid with both parties involved being subject to a fine and up to six months behind bars.
As it stands in all five of New York City’s boroughs, marriage licenses require any potential couple to name their biological parents and certify that there are “no legal impediments to the marriage,” according to the City Clerk’s Office. A state appeals court unanimously authorized a case in 2014 concerning a woman married to her own mother’s half-brother, citing the genetic ties were the same as first cousins. However, that ruling went on the emphasize “the almost universal horror” with which a parent-child marriage is viewed.