Index of FAQ about Homosexuality

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Is Love Sufficient to Condone a Sexual Relationship?  /  Should Governments Establish Sexual Boundaries?

It simply is not true that the love experienced between individuals is the only thing that matters. Every society establishes acceptable boundaries for sexual relationships. These are requirements in addition to love which must be met if the couple is to marry—or even to have sexual intercourse. To illustrate this, consider the case of incest. In Indiana, a 72-year-old grandmother fell madly in love with her 26-year-old grandson.1 Likewise, in Germany, a brother and sister who were estranged at birth eventually met and fell in love. However, the law in both countries prohibits these couples from marrying one another. In fact, in Germany it is illegal for close relatives to have any sexual relationship. According to Professor Kunze in a BBC News article, “[T]he law is here for a good reason. Medical research has shown that there is a higher risk of genetic abnormalities when close relatives have a child together. When siblings have children, there is a 50% chance that the child will be disabled.”2 This couple, which had lived together for 6 years and had given birth to 4 children, appears to have substantiated this claim as 2 of their children are disabled. Nevertheless, they claimed discrimination when the brother was jailed, and they presented many of the same heart-rending appeals as are frequently offered by homosexuals. At one point, the sister said, “I just want to live with my family, and be left alone by the authorities and by the courts.”3 Nevertheless, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Germany is entitled to ban incest. This is just one example of the many boundaries that society places around sexual relationships.

Another example is polygamy. Not only are polygamous marriages forbidden, but in many places a person can be imprisoned for such an arrangement.4 Still another example is that of under-aged relationships. In many countries, it is a criminal offense to engage in sexual activity with an under-aged child—even if that child desires the relationship. Outrage is a common reaction to stories such as India’s child brides as young as 5 years of age,5 or Britain’s barrister who advocated lowering the legal age of consent to 13 in order to stop the “persecution of old men.”6 This is because it is innately understood that when it comes to sexual relationships, there must be boundaries.

Governments and individuals alike draw lines at some point defining when love is no longer sufficient to condone a sexual relationship. Some of these lines are drawn because of moral reasons. Some are drawn because of genetic reasons. Others are drawn because of psychological reasons. Still other lines are drawn because of social reasons. Whatever the reason, anytime a line is drawn, it will necessarily make some people feel upset, misunderstood, and mistreated. However, this does not mean that it is unloving, and these are not sufficient reasons to remove these boundary lines. If the argument is accepted in the case of homosexuality that love alone is enough to excuse a sexual relationship, then there remains no consistent reason to uphold these other protective sexual boundary lines. This would genuinely be an unloving act.


1. Nikkhah, “Grandmother and grandson.”
2. Moore, “Couple stand by forbidden love.”
3. Ibid.
4. “Is polygamy illegal?”
5. Daily Mail Reporter, “The secret world.”
6. Meredith, “Age of consent.”

Works Cited

1. Daily Mail Reporter. “The secret world of the child bride: Heartbreaking pictures of the girls as young as FIVE who are married off to middle-aged men.” The Daily Mail, June 9, 2011. Accessed October 18, 2014. .
2. “Is polygamy illegal?” Polygamy. Accessed February 19, 2015. .
3. Meredith, Charlotte. “Age of consent should be lowered to 13 to stop persecution of old men, says top barrister.” Express, May 9, 2013. Accessed October 18, 2014. .
4. Moore, Tristana. “Couple stand by forbidden love.” BBC News, March 7, 2007. Accessed June 12, 2014. .
5. Nikkhah, Roya. “Grandmother and grandson to have child together.” The Telegraph, May 1, 2010. Accessed June 12, 2014. .


The above comes from our book Laid Bare . Check it out!


Author: Timothy Zebell, 2015