Forget about same sex marriage--you can marry your uncle!

Sick of the "debate" about gay marriage? Then prepare to puke. As the Pioneer Press reports, forces pro and con are currently raising gobs of cash in preperation for a consitutional amendment come November. This, of course, means one thing: There will be a Katrina-esque torrent of television ads, newspaper commentaries and screeds from bloggers addressing the peculiar non-institution. This massive exertion probably won't change the opinion of a single thoughtful human being. Of course, that is not to say it might not sway the minds of a considerable chunk of the electorate.

Whatever the outcome, moralizing legislators, bloviating pastors and activists of all stripes will probably keep yakking about same sex marriage until the day the sun finally goes super nova. Before that sweet relief arrives, the more trivial matters of the day--health care, economic inequity, environmental collapse, war, etc.--will languish largely unattended. Just as the Founding Fathers intended.

Oh well. As long as we're going to squander the End Times arguing same sex marriage, it's probably worthwhile to take a closer look at some other provisions of Minnesota's matrimonial law. You probably know, for instance, that existing law already explicitly prohibits same sex marriage. And, no doubt, you suspect that it forbids brothers and sisters from the long march down the aisle. (That unseemly custom, it turns out, is one of the reasons the great Inca empire only lasted about 85 years).

But there is one very surprising exemption to the incest prohibitions in the laws of the North Star state. Right there, tucked into Chapter 517 , subsection one, is a provision of law that allows for marriage "between an uncle and a niece, between an aunt and a nephew, [and] between first cousins...[as] permitted by the established customs of aboriginal cultures."

In other words, same sex couples--who pose zero threat to the collective health of the gene pool--are to be forever barred from enjoying the benefits of civil union. Meanwhile, for a certain protected class, an uncle and niece are free to marry, copulate and conceive children whose prefrontal cortexes will likely resemble a bowl of spilled oatmeal. Makes a lot of sense, doesn't it?


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