Gay Parenting Claim Is Unfounded - The Missourian: Opinion

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Gay Parenting Claim Is Unfounded

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Posted: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 5:32 pm

To The Editor:

I would like to respond to a letter by Richard Trigg regarding the impact of same-sex marriage on children.

While Mr. Trigg is correct that “numerous studies” show that traditional mother/father families are best for children, this is far from the full story.

The simple fact is this: All of the major professional organizations with expertise in child welfare — including (among others) pediatrics, psychology, psychiatry and sociology — have issued reports or resolutions in support of gay and lesbian parental rights.

While there are dissenters, the scholarly consensus clearly cuts against what Mr. Trigg claims. Moreover, the burden is actually on opponents of LGBT parental rights to prove that children raised by sexual minority parents fare worse than their counterparts in traditional mother/father households.

This burden has, to my knowledge, never been met. Indeed, in 2010 a 25-year longitudinal study actually showed that children raised by lesbian mothers had higher social and academic competencies than their counterparts, with lower instances of social problems.

This is likely due to multiple factors beyond parental sexual orientation, but the results are still interesting. The debate over marriage equality is important, and everyone deserves to know the full facts.

Dr. Judith Stacey of NYU summarizes the issue perfectly: “Rarely is there as much consensus in any area of social science as in the case of gay parenting.”

To claim, as Mr. Trigg does, that it is “grossly unfair” to raise a child in an LGBT household is, on the whole, empirically unfounded.

/opinion

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