Tony Perkins, head of the suspiciously named Family Research Council (we’ve been making families for millions of years without his “research”, yet he seems to feel that we need some?) was on one of the Sunday morning talk-shows this week, speaking about the “studies” that his conservative Christian lobbying group has seen regarding gays, children and marriage.
These studies (in his interview there was no mention of who did them or where to find the raw data) have determined, according to Mr. Perkins, that children who have, not just two parents, but two parents of the opposite sex, “turn out better” than children of same sex couples. On their web site, the only mention of this study is as follows:
“Last summer, University of Texas sociologist Mark Regnerus published a groundbreaking study of homosexual parents in the journal, Social Science Research. It showed that children of homosexuals suffered disadvantages in numerous areas—“.
Please note that the sociologist, Mark Regnerus, works for The University of Texas, but did the study on his own. It was not done by the University, just him. The article does not mention what the disadvantages were nor what were the “numerous areas”. You would think that he’d want to hit those items pretty hard, wouldn’t you?
I’d like to explore the logic which must precede any studies on subjects such as these. Shall we?
1. The occurance of same-sex couples having children is a recent one. Only in the last ten years or so have gay couples been legally able to adopt children, so it’s quite soon to believe that there is enough empirical data to be a reliable predictor of family relationships. And that data is irrevocably constitutive to a properly done study.
2. On its face, if you look at the difference between how gay couples and straight couples have children you will see that:
a. Gay people (couple or singles) cannot reproduce, so any children they have is by choice, every time. There is no such thing as a surprise gay pregnancy.
b. Heterosexual people (couples or singles) can, and often do, have children due to poor planning, broken condoms, disregard of precautions, rape, errors in calculating ovulation times, etc., etc.
c. Gay people ALWAYS get married by choice. There is no reason for them to ever get married due to pregnancy, or dad pressuring them for grandchildren, or issues of biological clocks.
The takeaway from these self-evident facts is that gay couples have fewer reasons to have unhappy marriages and even fewer reasons to blame children for their own disadvantaged lives. We see this happening with straight couples all around us, were young girls fall in love too soon, get pregnant, and are faced with raising a child at too young an age, and resenting it, or foisting that responsibility on their parents. It is extremely prevalent in urban areas, where teen pregnancies have been rampant for years. These things cannot happen with gay couples.
The point that I’m making is not that gay couples, by definition, make better parents. I’m only suggesting that anyone who pretends to be able to measure the advantages or disadvantages of children being raised by gay couples has an obvious and potentially sinister motivation to do so, since the data is too new and the logic betrays their conclusions.
The other incredibly ironic thing about Mr. Perkins is that he wants to ensure, with his oft-repeated desire to see Roe-Wade overturned, and birth-control limited, that the girl I described above has no choice but to keep that unwanted child and raise it, happily or not, or give it up for adoption.
Then, if a gay couple was eager to adopt it, get married and raise it in a home where it was wanted, loved and cherished, well, sorry, no.
You see, they’ve got this study…