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Redefining marriage changes its purpose

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  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 20, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    More than 100,000 US gay couples are **already** raising children, with or without marriage -- and that isn't going to change.

    Gay couples produce children in the same ways that infertile straight couples do. Giving those couples the tools they need to provide stable homes for their kids is a GOOD thing. Marriage encourages stable families -- and THAT is what helps kids, no matter who their parents love.

    Multiple groups of professional child-development experts -- including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Psychological Association, AND the National Association of Social Workers -- all **support** gay marriage. There is NO such professional group that opposes them.

    The AAP's position statement declares: “There is an emerging consensus, based on extensive review of the scientific literature, that children growing up in households headed by gay men or lesbians are not disadvantaged in any significant respect relative to children of heterosexual parents" and "Marriage strengthens families and benefits child development".

    Yes, children are important. If you SUPPORT gay marriage, you're supporting more stable homes for those kids.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    April 20, 2013 1:47 p.m.

    I couldn't agree more, children need more than a good parent or two good parents. What is needed is a mother and a father. If one parent dies the child still has a mother and father, but one is alive and one is dead. I support civil rights for people who are gay including hate crime laws and housing and employment laws as well as strict harassment laws. When one gay person is attacked the entite community feels it and the sense of insecurity. This is the logic of hate crime laws. As a society we need to learn once and for all not to needlessly discriminate. But in asking to adopt children, this is going too far.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 20, 2013 4:34 p.m.

    @cjb --

    "But in asking to adopt children, this is going too far."

    Gay people can *already* legally adopt, even in Utah.

    In fact, *single* gay people can adopt in Utah -- but stable gay couples can not. How does that make any sense?

    In Utah, there are roughly 4 children in foster care for **every qualified adoptive home**. There simply aren't enough straight adoptive homes out there. Allowing gay couples to adopt gets more of these foster children into loving homes -- and allowing the gay couples to marry will improve the stability of those homes. That's GOOD for the kids.

    The APA has declared that "not a single study has found children of gay or lesbian parents to be disadvantaged in any significant respect relative to children of heterosexual parents," and concluded that "home environments provided by gay and lesbian parents are as likely as those provided by heterosexual parents to support and enable children’s psychosocial growth."

    I just saw a new estimate saying that, nationwide, the total number of children living with at least one gay parent is 6-14 **million** children. Child raising IS important -- to both straight AND gay couples.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 20, 2013 4:34 p.m.

    I guess the children of GLBT couples don't matter.

    Marriage is about creating a familial bond where none previously existed. "Redefining" marriage isn't going to affect heterosexual marriage in the least. Not to mention that the meaning of marriage has changed many, many times throughout history.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    April 20, 2013 4:37 p.m.

    "I'm a sixth-generation Iowan, an Eagle Scout, and I was raised by my two moms, Jackie and Terry.
    People want to know what it's like having lesbian parents. We're like any other family. We eat dinner, we go to church, we have chores. But some people don't see it that way. When I was 12, watching the 2004 Republican convention, I remember politicians talking about protecting marriage from families like mine. Governor Romney says he's against same-sex marriage because every child deserves a mother and a father. I think every child deserves a family as loving and committed as mine. Because the sense of family comes from the commitment we make to each other to work through the hard times so we can enjoy the good ones. It comes from the love that binds us; that's what makes a family. Mr. Romney, my family is just as real as yours."

    (Zach Wahls 2012)

  • Nate Pleasant Grove, UT
    April 20, 2013 4:44 p.m.

    @amazondoc "'[C]hildren growing up in households headed by gay men or lesbians are not disadvantaged in any significant respect...'"

    One would expect that this arrangement will have repercussions across generations. Not all of its effects can be known immediately. It's not wise to just roll the dice, and hope that everything turns out well for society.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 20, 2013 4:54 p.m.

    @Nate --

    "One would expect that this arrangement will have repercussions across generations. Not all of its effects can be known immediately. It's not wise to just roll the dice, and hope that everything turns out well for society."

    That genie is already out of the bottle. There are roughly 6-14 **million** children in the US being raised by at least one gay parent already. They aren't going away.

    We can't make these kids disappear, even if we want them to. What we **can** do is help them to grow up in stable homes -- by supporting gay marriage.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    April 20, 2013 5:24 p.m.

    Nice try, the old 'think of the children' dodge. Truth is, given the state of so called 'traditional' marriage today, the commitment of two loving people willing to go through the problems and harassment that gay couples must endure, especially in a place like utah, might be a nice improvement in the overall condition of marriage.

  • Mike in Cedar City Cedar City, Utah
    April 20, 2013 5:25 p.m.

    More of the same old red herring. If you can't find a way to prove that gay marriage is a threat to traditional marriage, make it about children. How many people are raising children alone, how many are in orphanages or other institutions? It seems to me that those situations are potentially more damaging than a gay couple raising children.

    Lets face it, this gay marriage opposition is more about simple homophobia than anything else.

  • KJB1 Eugene, OR
    April 20, 2013 6:00 p.m.

    The DN can run as many of these stories as they like, but they can't stop the momentum of history. More and more people are seeing that the opponents of same sex marriage don't have any argument stronger than, "Because God said so." Single parents are legally allowed to raise their children, infertile couples are allowed to marry, and soon gay couples will be able to legalize their unions. The world won't end and the family won't be destroyed; life will go on. Ob-la-di, ob-la-da.

    In fifty years, people will look back at this wonder what the big deal was, and hopefully the DN will be wringing their hands over topics that really matter. Hopefully.

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    April 21, 2013 10:33 a.m.

    This argument about what "children deserve" is SO tired. Banning gay marriage does not strengthen families any more than it guarantees a nurturing mommy-plus-daddy home to all children. Please spare us the deflection.

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    April 21, 2013 11:19 a.m.

    Children have the right to be raised by their biological parents when at all possible. Two people of the same gender who 'marry' will never bear children. Through marriage society says that men should be responsible for the procreative actions.

  • Snowdude South Jordan, UT
    April 21, 2013 12:28 p.m.

    Again, the arguments about NO experts believe same sex marriage is not as advantageous as traditional marriage for children. Google "The Regnerus Controversy: Children In Traditional Families Do Better Than Those Raised In Non-Traditional Settings" by W.M Briggs. Briggs is a professor of statistics at Cornell. Check his credentials on his blog. There are actually "experts" that don't believe same sex marriage is as good for children as a stable marriage with a mom and dad.

    Mention the Regnerus study and the gay community will immediately come unglued. However, this article points out the numerous problems and biases in the criticisms of the Regnerus study. You might also note that the University of Texas audited Regnerus based on all the noise and found no scientific misconduct. **None**

    I like the position, "don't talk about the affects on children--it has nothing to do with this conversation." Sorry, but it does.

  • Snowdude South Jordan, UT
    April 21, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    On the subject of experts agreeing--there are experts in the American College of Pediatricians that do not support gay parenting. It is said their membership is small, therefore their opinions do not matter in the vast political environment. There is also a professional organization called NARTH, comprised of licensed mental health experts. They are also criticized because they do not agree with the popular view. The problem is, if experts do not espouse what is popular, they cannot possibly be experts. See the Briggs article noted earlier.

    Ask anyone in the NASW or APA if their membership is lock step on these issues. They will laugh. The organizations have recognized bodies representing the gay community; and so we should not be surprised when their positions are gay affirmative; but the organizations in no way represent all members.

    I'm not saying the world will be idea where all kids get a mom & dad. Sometimes accidents happen (death, divorce); but why purposely race down a path where we set these situations up by design? Moms and dads are different. Are we really making the argument those differences don't matter in raising children?

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    April 21, 2013 12:47 p.m.

    They are bigots. How else can they be classified? If two men or two women want the same legal rights as a man-woman relationship, it does absolutely nothing to take away from the man-woman relationship. It has no bearing on their lives at all so it can't be anything but bigotry.
    The way polygamous relationships worked in Utah were far worse than man-man or woman-woman who desire the same legal rights.

  • amazondoc USA, TN
    April 21, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    @Snowdude --

    "Google "The Regnerus Controversy: Children In Traditional Families Do Better Than Those Raised In Non-Traditional Settings" by W.M Briggs."

    That blog entry says nothing to alleviate the centrally fatal flaw in Regnerus' study. In fact, Briggs admits that it's there. Specifically, Regnerus compared **unstable** homosexual homes with **stable** heterosexual homes. He fatally confounded his results.

    Many studies have confirmed that stable homes are better for kids than unstable ones. That is no surprise. So it isn't any surprise that Regnerus got the results he did. But he did NOTHING to prove any conclusions about orientation -- only about stability.

    Incidentally, one of the findings of the National Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study, an ongoing 30 year study, is that kids growing up in **stable** lesbian homes are SAFER than in stable heterosexual homes, and that kids in those homes do just as well.

    "There are actually "experts" that don't believe same sex marriage is as good for children as a stable marriage with a mom and dad."

    Errr....no. Briggs didn't actually make any conclusions about marriage himself. And, of course, he's a statistician -- not a child-development expert.

  • EDM Castle Valley, Utah
    April 21, 2013 12:50 p.m.

    Snowdude,

    Even if it is true that, overall, children do better in a two-parent heterosexual household, how on earth does the ban on sme-sex marriage achieve this? Gay people will still be gay, settle into partnerships, and sometimes raise children together. I find it very odd that some of the very people who hold marriage so high for its important role as a stabilizer in society, would also deny some children the benefit of growing up with married parents.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 21, 2013 1:27 p.m.

    @Snowdude --

    "there are experts in the American College of Pediatricians that do not support gay parenting."

    That's a tiny ultra-conservative group of roughly 60-100 people who banded together **specifically** to fight the issue of gay adoption. It can hardly be considered a representative sample of *anything* aside from homophobia.

    "There is also a professional organization called NARTH"

    These are conversion therapists. They ignore "the global scientific consensus, the holding of the world's major mental health organizations, and scientific research into the topic which show that homosexuality is not a disorder."

    They've even had their 501(c)(3) status revoked by the IRS.

    They are also no longer accredited to provide CE credits to therapists.

    Yeah, they sound **really** reputable.

    "Are we really making the argument those differences don't matter in raising children?"

    EVERY family is "different". Some are rich; some are black; some are educated; some are from Texas instead of Vermont. We don't restrict marriages or child-raising because of differences.

    Millions of children in this country are ALREADY being raised by at least one gay parent. We need to help these children by making their families more stable. That means marriage.

  • Older Than I Once Was South Jordan, UT
    April 21, 2013 4:46 p.m.

    Contrario, why was no one surprised when you rejected the expert opinions you requested? NARTH lost their 501c3 status--yes, they you need to file a 990 each year and they missed it. Therefore, they must be charlatans. They don't offer CE credits--they decided that wasn't their mission.

    It appears because you disagree with them, none of them went to college...or got licensed. Here's a comment from an NASW website--"...It’s important to express our opinions and help the Association realize not all its members vote or think one way. Yes Virginia, there ARE conservatives in NASW (alongside progressives, apathetics, centrists, fanatics and a variety of others)" Again, get a feel for who runs the organizations and their pronouncements won't surprise you.

    As Briggs pointed out, you can only be tolerated if you think the same as the gay community. Case in point - the Sacramento theater director who was fired after opponents of Proposition 8 publicized his campaign contributions.

    I wish kids in same sex families the best and I believe their parents love them. Wouldn't it be nice if we could strive to give children both a mom and a dad wherever possible?

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 21, 2013 4:58 p.m.

    @Snowdude;

    Not only has the Regnerus study been fully debunked, but he can hardly be considered an unbiased source as it has recently come to light that he had INSTRUCTIONS to find the results he did from his partons. Not only that, he had INSTRUCTIONS to hurry the study as quickly as possible.

    He's also provided an amicus brief to the Supreme Court on the anti-marriage cadre.

    As a result, ANY reading of the Regnerus study should be suspect.

  • Christian 24-7 Murray, UT
    April 21, 2013 9:19 p.m.

    There is no benefit to any children in lying to them by telling them that having same-sex parents is the ideal family structure, even if that is the family structure they live in.

    Deal with any legal disadvantages those children may have by changing the laws, but do not endorse a less than optimal family structure by pretending it is equal to a mother and father family. It simply is not equal, and no laws can be enacted that will change that fact. If laws attempting to equalize the relationships are passed, we are denying nature and we are lying to ourselves and our children.

    Please skip the name calling. I recognize the full value of each human, including those with same-sex attraction, but their relationships ALWAYS lack the ability to produce children. That makes their relationships inherently unequal. Whining and enacting laws can never change this.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    April 22, 2013 5:56 a.m.

    @ amazondoc/Contrarius

    Regardless of how many asterisks you may use in your sophistic posts, you will never be able to refute the fact that in a "gay marriage" situation, a child could never, ever, ever enjoy having both of his own, biological parents in the same home with him in a committed marriage and parenting situation.

    Yes, yes, I know; due to various circumstances, not every kid has access to both his biological parents; and yes, not every heterosexual couple may have kids of their own; and yes, many of these couples adopt.

    But these are exceptions to the normal rule. And that exception is designed primarily for the benefit of the child. It is not designed for the benefit -- political or otherwise -- of same-gender couples.

    The notion that homosexuals want "gay marriage" because their overriding concern is for the child, is untrustworthy on its face. It cunningly denies critical conditions such as I named above, that of course a kid is at a distinct advantage being raised by his own mother and father in the same home.

    It is for this and many other reasons that only heterosexual unions should enjoy the endorsement of government and society.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 22, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    @anti-liar --

    "you will never be able to refute the fact that...."

    I have no desire to make such a refutation. :-)

    "And that exception is designed primarily for the benefit of the child....."

    What makes you think that homosexuals have a unique intent when adopting?

    "The notion that homosexuals want "gay marriage" because their overriding concern is for the child..."
    -
    Fortunately, I never presented such a notion.

    Homosexuals want marriage for the same reasons that everyone else does. Those reasons range from love and commitment, to recognition of full citizenship, to financial benefits -- as they do for straight couples. One of the *effects* of marriage is to increase stability, which helps children.

    "of course a kid is at a distinct advantage...."

    It doesn't matter where the kid is at a "distinct advantage" -- because that specific kid would never have the *opportunity* to be raised by his own biological parents. You won't magically move him into a happy straight home by denying gay marriage. You might as well say "a kid is at a distinct advantage being raised in a wealthy home -- so let's outlaw marriage by the poor!". Such measures don't help anything.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 22, 2013 10:00 a.m.

    @Christian 24-7;

    Marriages between old people is incapable of producing children, are those marriages "inherently unequal" (what a non-Christian idea).

    Marriages between infertile heterosexual couples are incapable of producing children, are those marriages "inherently unequal"?

    It isn't about the marriage being "equal" to a baby-factory marriage (no two marriages are ever equal), it's about begin treated equally by the government.

  • Contrarius Lebanon, TN
    April 22, 2013 10:17 a.m.

    @older --

    A few more facts about NARTH --

    1. NARTH's founders believed that homosexuality was caused by “smothering mothers and abdicating fathers.” -- even though homosexuals are born into ALL types of homes

    2. They are virulently homophobic --

    Founder Socarides called homosexuality "a purple menace that is threatening the proper design of gender distinctions and society”.

    Founder Nicolosi was previously a spokesman for Focus on the Family. He has called homosexuality "perverse and, in fact, unnatural". He has also claimed that homosexuals want to normalize pedophilia and spread AIDS.

    No bothering with scientific objectivity for these guys, nosirreebob!

    4. Former member Wayne Throckmorton confirms the group's bias, saying: "“When it comes to science, you can’t let your religious views color what is. And I think NARTH does that all the time".

    5. NARTH's conferences have featured such luminaries as Scott Lively (the pastor who claimed that gays orchestrated the holocaust) and Paul Cameron (who was thrown out of both the APA and the ASA for fiddling with research data).

    6. Board member George Rekers was caught in 2010 with a rentboy he'd taken on vacation.

    I could say much more!

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    April 22, 2013 2:14 p.m.

    Fact: Polygamists are allowed only to marry one person of their choice, but not more than one. Therefore, they are limited in exercising their civil rights, right? I smell some deep rooted bigotry if someone says 'no'. What about a child who doesn't have a choice who his/her parents are? What if he/she wanted polygamist parents, but were limited by their parents' bigotry? What if a child grows up and realizes they have been excluded from the experience of having father and a mother? Should they be able to sue their 'parents'? As far as being with a women, most men are driven by fear of being a man, but nevertheless, without the understanding that 'gender is an essential' characteristic of the human experience, being a man is what nature intended. I believe one of the most irresponsible decisions a man could possibly make is rooted in trying to change their identity to hide their fears of what it means to be a man.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    April 22, 2013 2:30 p.m.

    @Contrarius/amazondoc

    "I have no desire to make such a refutation."
    "Fortunately, I never presented such a notion."

    Yes, you do, and have. In this reader discussion, you, "Contrarius," and "amazondoc," the poster of the first message in this discussion, obviously are one and the same poster.

    "What makes you think that homosexuals have a unique intent when adopting?"

    By the fact that typically, they cite THEIR "rights," rather than the rights of the child; and by the fact that you, yourself, Contrarius/amazondoc, would EXCLUDE the fact which I pointed out earlier, as you certainly did.

    "Homosexuals want marriage for the same reasons that everyone else does."

    No, they don't. They don't share the same, special concerns for the best interests of the child that society at large has shared for thousands of years. For example, they DENY the value of a child being raised by both his natural parents where possible.

    This basic couple-centeredness is the primary reason why there must never be a state-sanctioned redefinition of the concept of "marriage."

    Nor must the institution be eliminated -- which many, lesbian journalist Masha Gessen, for example, believe is the ultimate goal of the LGBT community.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    April 22, 2013 5:35 p.m.

    bandersen says:

    "I believe one of the most irresponsible decisions a man could possibly make is rooted in trying to change their identity to hide their fears of what it means to be a man."

    You have most of that right. It would be 100% irresponsible to try and change our identity and hide it in fear of what other men may think of us. I'm perfectly fine being who and what I am, including a terrific man. Being with a woman doesn't make a man a "man", it's what he does with his life that does.

    Your comment that the polygamist doesn't have the right to marry as many as they want is a non-sequitur. As I stated, they at least get to legally marry one of the people they choose; that's what we're fighting for: the right to marry one person of our choice.

  • bandersen Saint George, UT
    April 22, 2013 7:10 p.m.

    Ranchhand: It ain't what a knows that hurts him; it's what he knows that just ain't so. When God created man, eve was made along side him for a purpose, one of those purposes not being to run from her and the responsibilities that come with it. Anybody, clearly evidenced by the wave of irresponsible men in our society today, can run from the responsibilities of fatherhood, wife, and community. That takes work, something sorely missing from the male segment of our society today. Women naturally take to someone that wants to take charge of his responsibilties. For my daughter, I will expect nothing less. Unfortunately, some in our society seem bent on refusing those responsibitlites and have come up with a host of fraudulent reasons to do so.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    April 22, 2013 7:41 p.m.

    bandersen says:

    "Ranchhand: It ain't what a knows that hurts him; it's what he knows that JUST AIN'T SO. When God created man, eve was made along side him..."

    Oh the irony...

  • plainbrownwrapper Nashville, TN
    April 23, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    @anti-liar --

    "Contrarius," and "amazondoc," the poster of the first message in this discussion, obviously are one and the same poster."

    This one, too. It's no secret; I've mentioned it myself in previous posts.

    But --

    1. I've never claimed that children raised by gay couples have both biological parents with them, and;

    2. I've never claimed that gay couples want marriage "because their overriding concern is for the child".

    Gays want marriage for the same multiplicity of reasons as straights do. Those reasons include children, formalizing their love and commitment, legal benefits, and recognition as full citizens. And, of course, marriage has the *effect* of helping kids.

    I'm sorry for your confusion, but I'm not responsible for it.

    "typically, they cite THEIR "rights," rather than the rights of the child"

    and

    "They don't share the same, special concerns for the best interests of the child that society at large has shared for thousands of years."

    Gay people aren't some alien species. They want the same things anyone else does. If you expect anyone to take you seriously, you're going to need a whole lot more evidence than "because I say so".

  • Lasvegaspam Henderson, NV
    April 24, 2013 11:02 p.m.

    Due to the scant amount of research that currently exists and which will impact future unborn generations who will be denied either a mother or a father, there is good reason why this debate should be lengthened out.

    Read one man’s story of growing up with two moms and the chaos that resulted.
    Search for Robert Oscar Lopez Growing Up With Two Moms.