Monday, April 8, 2013

Did any of these nitwits actually read the Regnerus study or are they confused or are they simply liars?

The American Family Association propagandist, Bryan Fischer, offers enough daily spew to fill an entire blog with counterpoint. AFA is a hate group and Fischer is clearly representative of the lunatic fringe. Nevertheless, his take on same-sex parenting is similar to many people who oppose marriage equality. Today (in a tedious piece about the SPLC) Fischer writes:
The SPLC falsely claims that same-sex parents don’t harm children. But according to prominent sociologist Mark Regnerus of the University of Texas, children raised in same-sex households fare worse on 77 of 80 possible outcomes compared to children raised in an intact home by their biological parents.
That's not what Regnerus concludes. Not even close. I'll get to Regnerus in a moment. Here is what the American Sociological Association says (in part) in their amicus brief:
Decades of methodologically sound social science research, especially multiple nationally representative studies ... confirm that positive child wellbeing is the product of stability in the relationship between the two parents, stability in the relationship between the parents and child, and greater parental socioeconomic resources. Whether a child is raised by same-sex or opposite-sex parents has no bearing on a child’s wellbeing.

The clear and consistent consensus in the social science profession is that across a wide range of indicators, children fare just as well when they are raised by same-sex parents when compared to children raised by opposite-sex parents.
The ASA brief goes on to demolish the Regnerus study but allow me to quote Bill Keller in the New York Times yesterday.
He [Regnerus] compared two groups of young adults. The first group told interviewers that at some point in their upbringing a parent experienced a same-sex “romantic relationship.” In most cases, the parents subsequently broke up. In other words, this group wasn’t the offspring of committed gay couples but of failed unions, some of them probably sham marriages. It’s not even clear whether the parents who strayed were gay or lesbian, or simply experimenting. The second group consisted of kids who spent their childhoods in lasting, married, mom-and-dad families.

Guess which group had problems?
Keller goes further because he spoke with Regnerus:
Regnerus, when I talked to him, conceded that his study compared apples and oranges, because “I didn’t have oranges.” He was unable to articulate what bearing his study had on gay marriage except that it “paints the reality of people’s lives as fairly complicated.”
At this point, we all know the flaws in Regnerus. Why do religious conservatives feel free to consistently and persistently misrepresent it? The answer, I think, is that they don't pay a price for doing so. If one of Fischer's disciples read the piece in the New York Times they would conclude "... well, after all it is just the ultra-liberal New York Times and I believe God's word."

In other words these are people who are easily misled     particularly when they are told what they want to hear. At this point Regnerus could retract the study and they would conclude that it was just political correctness under pressure. 

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