Can a man marry his close male relative in West Virginia?

Here is the applicable law prohibiting consaguineous marriages in the State of West Virginia:

Of course, the law has not been updated since Obergefell required the recognition and performance of same sex marriages. So, suppose you are a county clerk and a man wishes to marry his brother or his adult son. Must you issue the license? Would it be an absurd result that a man cannot marry his male cousin because of this law, but can marry closer relatives?

Assuming you’re serious about this question…

The effect of Obergefell was to render gender-based restrictions on marriage unenforceable. The law forbidding the marriage of a woman and her son or a woman and her brother have thus been implicitly generalized to mean any adult, regardless of gender, and his/her child, regardless of gender; likewise any adult, regardless of gender, and his/her sibling, regardless of gender.

Implicitly generalized is not the same as explicitly generalized. The existence of a law generally permitting both opposite-sex and same-sex marriage, combined with the existence of a law specifically prohibiting marriage between certain parties, could be read to say all marriages that are not explicitly forbidden are implicitly allowed.

I’m quite certain that an attempt by two West Virginian brothers to marry would surely in the law being amended, but it seems to me that until the law is challenged there is a bit of a gray area…

Well, the obvious way to read that would be that the gender-based restiction on a woman marrying her father is now unenforceable, and the gender-based restriction on a father marrying his daughter is now unenforcable, but we know better than to expect any specific law to have it’s obvious meaning

On a technical note, this is a subset of what computer tech-heads called the “gay2k” problem. (It’s safe to google)

I’m in IT and I’ve never heard that although I immediately can figure out what it means. Perhaps it’s more of a thing in Australia because it is closer to rhyming with y2k?

I couldn’t find a very good page on it, but I assume it is a limitation in older software that prohibits the assignment of two people as married when they are of the same sex? IOW, the software assumes that any marriage will be by opposite sex couples?

Back to the OP, let’s assume that two brothers were able to marry, and the Legislature amended the law because of public outrage. Could the Legislature retroactively abolish the marriage, or would the two brothers be permitted to remain married?

If I read c) correctly, the marriage of mother to my father’s brother would not have been permitted in WV? (My father and his brother’s wife had both died, I should point out. They did have trouble finding a rabbi to perform the service, but that’s a different question.) Also I have married friends who are actually step-brother and sister, although they had never lived in the same household before getting married. They have been married for 58 years.

Need answer fast?