Monday, March 9, 2015

ASA brief slams Regnerus again

Mark Regnerus' professional organization, the American Sociological Association, has filed an amicus brief in the current marriage cases before the Supreme Court. Not only does the ASA assert a scholarly consensus about same-sex parenting, they dismantle, by name, Regnerus' study. This is the second time that ASA has done this. In 2013, they filed a similar brief in United States v. Windsor.

Ideally this commentary would be irrelevant to 14th Amendment issues identified by the Court. However equality opponents suggest that one of the reasons to oppose same-sex marriage is that gay couples are crappy parents. Not only is this untrue, it ignores the simple fact that kids are being raised by gay couples and they are greatly benefited if their parents are married. Nevertheless, according to the current amicus brief:
The clear and consistent social science consensus is that children raised by same-sex parents fare just as well as children raised by different-sex parents. Decades of methodologically sound social science research, including multiple nationally representative studies and expert evidence introduced in courts around the country, 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 the child, and sufficient parental socioeconomic resources. The wellbeing of children does not depend on the sex or sexual orientation of their parents. Unsurprisingly, the courts below recognized this fact.
Further along:
The Regnerus 2012a Paper Offers No Basis for Conclusions About Same-Sex Parents

The Regnerus 2012a paper offers no basis for conclusions about same-sex parents for the following reasons. First , Regnerus 2012a does not examine children born or adopted into same-sex parent families, but instead examines children who, from the time they were born until they were 18 or moved out, had a parent who at some time had “a same-sex romantic relationship.” See Regnerus 2012a at 756. Regnerus noted that “just under half” of the individuals characterized by him as children of ‘lesbian mothers’ and ‘gay fathers’ were the offspring of failed different- sex marriages whose parent subsequently had a same- sex relationship. In other words, the study did not analyze children of two same-sex parents.
… [Regnerus] published a second analysis of the data, which is referred to as Regnerus 2012b. Regnerus 2012b attempted to remedy the fact that Regnerus 2012a did not analyze whether the children had actually lived with the parent who had at some point been “romantically involved” with someone of the same sex. But Regnerus 2012b does not remedy Regnerus 2012a’s shortcomings.
I am guessing that the folks at ASA have been intellectually offended by Dr. Regnerus' lack of scholarship. 

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