Why Ban Cousin Marriages?

Einstein married Elsa Löwenthal — his first cousin, in 1919

Source: The Huffington Post

: Muslim, professor, doctor and philanthropist

Never go to a barber shop while you are still mulling over controversial news like, “Obama invokes gay rights in inaugural address.”

Because your mind may sputter an even more controversial question like, “Why then we smother the discussion on the topic of first cousin marriages?”

And if the question is asked out loud, you may get a response like, “well, you don’t have to be an Einstein to know that incestuous relationships lead to diseases in the babies.”

This actually happened to me last week. In one succinct sentence, my barber spelled out the three oft repeated reasons to justify banning cousin marriages. That they cause diseases, that they are incestuous, and that banning such marriages is a no brainer. But there is only one problem: all three reasons should be debunked.

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10 replies

  1. First or second cousin marriages have no significance of any hereditary abnormality. If there, as some believe in it, then the frequency is much lower than other reasons of abnormalities.Like down syndrome disorder is an onset of late life marriages.It is great piece of research and adequate justification that cousin marriages are perfectly safe.

  2. Einstein married Elsa Löwenthal, who had nursed him through an illness. Elsa was Albert’s first cousin maternally and his second cousin paternally.Their union produced no children. Praise the Lord.

  3. Zakaria Virk: Why ‘praise the Lord’? Would it not have been interesting to see Einstein’s children?
    Well, not every one can be a genius, therefore – cousins or not – the society might have been disappointed…

  4. If Allah the All-Knowing allows it in Holy Quran, who are we to question it? The abnormality myth is from old pagan times.

  5. First of all, I completely understand the fact that you are allowed marry your first cousin in islam. and I am not at all supporting the ban of marrying cousin. When parents enquired about my opinion to marry my cousin, first thing came in to my mind is the fact that there are more chances of having a baby with some deficiency when we have kids. my relative who lives next door married his cousin and both his children have physical problem. Then i thought why would i take risk and get married to my cousin? I am quite sure that there are 100s of examples to prove otherwise Including our beloved huzur. But if there is even 3-4% more chances (according to this report) why would i take risk.

    Having said that, finally I got married to someone who is not my cousin or second cousin. And my 3 month old baby is not born perfect and he has his deficiency. May be this is how the Allah almighty’s way of saying “it is Me who gives the baby and it is ME who decides how the baby should be, not you”

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