Saturday, August 22, 2015

Real Consent

A few months back John Moore wrote:

 Why not use consent as the moral test for sexual activity? If both parties are mature enough and give their willing consent, then it can't be wrong.

The problem with polyamory is just that it's sometimes doubtful whether all parties freely consent. That's also the problem with polygamy and sadomasochism.

 VR: It seems to me that this implies that Real Consent is more than just saying yes, and as such represents a far more restrictive sexual morality than one would be initially inclined to think. 

It seems to me that Real Consent implies a very strong case against pornography, since the person using the pornography cannot be sure that the actors and actresses are not being raped.  

As Linda Lovelace said, "When you see the movie Deep Throat, you are watching me being raped.

Anyone who uses lies or alcohol to persuade someone sexually, it seems to me, does not have real consent. 

I am pretty sure that real consent is not a sufficient test. But it is certainly a necessary condition, and one that is insufficiently developed. 


John B. Moore said...

It's the same in any industry, not just pornography. I can't wear Nike shoes because I can't be sure they're not made by sweatshop child labor. I can't eat beef because I can't be sure the animals are treated humanely. I can't eat fresh fruit because I can't be sure the immigrant laborers aren't victims of trafficking in persons.

The problem isn't with the pornography itself, but with poor industry regulation. And the industry tends to be poorly regulated due to people's squeamish prudery that turns a blind eye.

Crude said...

And the industry tends to be poorly regulated due to people's squeamish prudery that turns a blind eye.

It tends to be poorly regulated because the one political party really into regulation is also really into rape flicks and the studios that make them - and the studios don't like regulation.

Ilíon said...

"... one that is insufficiently developed."

And *who* is competent, and by what criteria, to determine that Real Consent (tm) has been achieved?

Ilíon said...

Is the determinate that Real Consent (tm) has been achieved something that can be codified, such that a presumption (for or against) by those who are not amongst the elect can be rationally maintained? Or is Real Consent (tm) something which can be determined only on a case-by-case basis, and only by the elect?

UberGenius said...

On theism, where morality is objective being rooted in what God thinks about humans in relationship to humans and objects, it is worthwhile to ponder the necessary and sufficient conditions of various moral propositions. However, on atheism, where we are "dancing to our DNA" so to speak, what does it mean to act morally? Were the Nazis acting morally when they killed 6 million Jews? The Holocaust optimized the German DNA didn't it. The fittest survived.

If we are just a few rungs higher on the evolutionary ladder than apes why do we consider forcible copulating with another of our species to be "immoral?" Many species rape their mate. Why should we be different on evolution? Who develops the criterion for behavior on evolution? The fittest? The Nazis gave this very defense at the Nuremberg trials.

On naturalism all so-called morals are just what your society will let you get away with. I'm thinking of the recent flurry of commercials, "Love has no boundaries!" They show people behind a x-Ray machine and when they step out we see straight and gay, family and friends and applaud the new openness! But I imagine that applause would dwindle if we say:
A man and a pony
A priest and a little boy
A Mormon man and his seven wives
A father and a 10-year old daughter

The problem with grounding ones morals based on popular vote by groups of subjects is that across human history it always declines and by that I mean ends up devolving into might makes right. We in the U.S. Are the policemen of the world due to our Christian foundation. We erode that foundation at our own peril.