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Michael Jackson & Marital Sex

Gloom in the bedroom?

October 28, 2010

Last week, a teary-eyed Lisa Marie Presley, the first wife of Michael Joseph Jackson, revealed her innermost feelings as she reminisced about her late husband on Oprah. King Elvis' daughter even discreetly talked about the couple's sex life. But that he obviously had one argues against the past contemptibly bogus charges of child molestation.

In a related story, fans around the world were elated to see his elementary school restore his good name on the auditorium. It was a move long overdue. Interestingly, with regard to marital intimacies, MJ "the Jehovah's Witness" was taught NOT to subscribe to what Witness leadership considered to be taboo sex acts--even those between a husband and wife. Engaging in these illicit acts was punishable by congregation sanctions. What follows may surprise some.

Oral Sex: A History: Historically, all three Abrahamic faiths--Judaism, Christianity, and Islam--have condemned oral sex between marriage mates, though contemporary views and more liberal interpretation of Scripture challenge the status quo.

For part of the ‘70s, oral sex within the marriage was a disfellowshipping offense as well as grounds for divorce among the Witnesses. But what exactly is oral sex?

One website for teens describes it thusly: "Oral sex is any genital (to the vulva, penis or anus) stimulation (touch) done by a partner's mouth, lips and/or tongue (and often combined with use of the hands). Cunnilingus is the big word for oral sex done upon women, and fellatio, for oral sex upon men. Analingus is a term used to describe oral-anal sex for anyone." As will be shown below, oral sex prohibitions are not restricted to the western religions.

Anal Sex: No Mystery: Unlike oral sex, anal sex (including analingus) remains anathema among the Abrahamic faiths. The act of penile penetration of the anus is specifically condemned throughout Scripture. (Le 18:22; Ro 1:26, 27) Whether it is consensual sex (as is the case at 1 Co 6:9 where the receptive male partner, a malakos [Greek for "soft man"] is mentioned), or nonconsensual sex (as detailed at 1 Tim 1:10 where Paul speaks of "men who forcefully penetrate the anuses of boys and men" [Carr's Christian Bible]), anal penetration is ostensibly condemned in and of itself. 

The text at Deuteronomy 23:18, where the footnote in the New World Translation describes "one who practices anal intercourse, especially with a boy," suggests such a conclusion. (For Biblical incidents of places or locations where probable forced sodomy or "male-on-male-rape" had occurred, see Ge 19:1-29 and Jg 19:15-20:48.) Aside from Scriptural censure, there are also medical concerns.

Irrespective of the novelty and orgasmic intensity reportedly experienced by participants there are serious risks associated the practice of anal sex, not the least of which is anal cancer. "Anal cancer is relatively rare," says one source, "accounting for about 1 percent of gastrointestinal malignancies." However, this same source then strikes an ominous tone.

"But as many as 4,000 new cases can be diagnosed within a year in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society." Continuing, it notes that "Most cases of anal cancer are related to infection with the human papilloma virus [HPV]. The incidence of the disease has jumped 160% in men and 78% in women in the last thirty years, according to a 2004 American study."

Not surprisingly--at least from a Biblical standpoint--"Receptive anal sex increases the incidence [of anal cancer] sevenfold," according to this study. And insofar as the Sentinel's target audience is concern, it may be particularly disturbing for readers to know that "The sharpest increase was among African American men, whose incidence of anal cancer has more than doubled in the past three decades." Adding insult to injury, "Black men also had a lower survival rate from the disease." All are concerned.

Quandary in the Laundry?: Some argue that neither oral nor anal sex is explicitly defined in Witness literature.  Indeed, apparently there's some shyness. JWs published the expressions cunnilingus and fellatio once each when they quoted a physician in The Watchtower July 15, 1974.

Conclusion: "The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibetan Buddhism has said that any sex other than penis-vagina intercourse, including anal sex but also oral sex and masturbation, is ‘sexual misconduct.'" Further, "In an 1997 interview he restated that ‘even with your own wife, using one's mouth or the other hole is sexual misconduct.'" Though this may echo the official Witness posture, Michael's position apparently was, "Don't Ask. Don't Tell." Peace and blessings to all. Amen.