*Below is a retelling of a zoom recording that was sent to us through our anonymous tip line*
“Hey uh… Professor? Sorry to interrupt, but I have a sort of person- I mean hypothetical question about the morality of wanting to be romantic with your step-sibling,” asked a philosophy class student quietly with their camera off during discussion. “Hypothetically, of course,” he added a few seconds later in the deafening silence of the meeting.
The professor chuckled awkwardly. “You’re talking about incest? Well, it’s often viewed as morally reprehensible because of possible defects from childbir-”
“No, we are not- I mean, hypothetically, consider two people are not actually blood-related. Like they are step-siblings whose parents just got married.”
“Well, I think that could still pose some ethical questions. If you’ve remembered Schneider’s ideas of kinship from earlier in the class you’ll know that the definition of the family often extends just beyon-”
“No, but what if they really aren’t family at all? Like if they look totally different from each other? Like I have- I mean, for example, let’s say he has brown hair and is a little chubby and she is like a model with beautiful curly red hair that flows like waves in the ocean”
“Okay… let’s consider this thought experime-”
“And what if she never likes him back even though he does so much for her. Why does she not notice all the things that-”
“Okay class, that should wrap it up for today,” announced the professor, muting everyone in the room and ending the meeting as soon as possible.