The Family Research Council says that their vision is “a culture in which human life is valued, families flourish, and religious liberty thrives”. I recently stumbled upon an article on their website titled “Ten Arguments From Social Science Against Same Sex Marriage”. Whoever wrote this article has obviously never met a same sex couple with or without children. I can also say with 100% certainty that the author of the article and the researchers who complied the studies the author quotes DID NOT grow up in a same sex household. I can personally refute every single point they make with events from my own life. I’ll retype the gist of their points, but here’s a link to the actual article if you want to read the whole thing (http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=if04g01).
1) Children hunger for their biological parents.
This in in no way 100% true. The only things I know for sure about the sperm donor my mother’s doctor used is that he was a medical student at the University of Texas, he looked similar to my mother and had a clean family medical history. I’ve had several opportunities to find out more, and I’ve turned each one down. I’ve never had a deep urge to seek him out. I’m happy with my family and don’t feel the need to add to it. He did his part and provided my parents with the chance to have a child.
Their initial complaint is that same sex couples would be producing a “generation of children living apart from their parent”. Umm, aren’t there a lot of straight couples who have done the same thing? The number of children from broken homes and parents who don’t live together would be a staggering number. Where is your objection to that?
What they don’t understand is that growing up in a house with same sex parents is nothing like being the child of an unwed mother or a child from a broken home. The child of a single mother knows that they live in a house with one parent while their friends don’t. That leads to the hard to answer questions like “Where’s my daddy?” and “Didn’t he love me?”. A child of divorce goes from living in a house with two parents that is then disturbed by one of them leaving.
I grew up in a house with two parents. I remember asking my grandmother once why my friends had a mommy and a daddy when I had two mommies. The answer I got was “You know how some people have black hair or red hair or blonde hair? Some people have a mommy and a daddy, some people have two mommies and some people have two daddies”. To me, at the time, it made sense. People have different colors of hair and eyes, so why not different parents?
In the long run, growing up the way I did made me less judgmental. I learned at an early age that not everyone is the same and not everyone comes from the same situation I did. It didn’t mean they were in any way lesser than me.
Growing up assuming that everyone is just like you will cause a huge culture shock the first time you have to deal with the real world. These people seem to assume that children are raised in a vacuum. I was raised not just by my parents but by a whole group of adults. I had five father figures, and each one had a different and positive impact on my life.
2) Children need fathers.
I will agree the the basic premise of this point, but I don’t think children necessarily need their biological father around. There are an awful lot of biological fathers who would be horrible role models for their children. They’re abusive, criminals or neglectful. You can’t tell me that having a person like that in a child’s life is a good thing. Genetics don’t make you a good parent, love does.
If these people genuinely believe that 100% of children are better off with both biological parents, they should be lobbying for a bill that outlaws separation or divorce for married couples with children and a law that makes being a single parent illegal.
I agree that strong male role models reduce criminal behavior and risky sexual behavior in girls, but nothing says that it has to be a biological role model. I wasn’t a criminal or promiscuous. I had more father figures than my friends who grew up in a house with two parents. Again, children are not raised in a vacuum.
3) Children need mothers.
Again, somewhat true, but again a child needs a loving role model, not just a donor of biological tissue. My younger brother (not genetically, he’s my mother’s godson) was adopted before he was a week old by a single gay man my family knew from a parenting support group at our church. Evan (my brother) spent a good deal of time at our house and even though he’s 18 now, he still has an amazingly close relationship with both me and my mother. Any time he had a question, there were always a lot of people around to answer him. He grew up, just as I did, knowing that he was loved and accepted no matter who he was.
He’s had a lot of female role models just like I had a lot of different male role models.
4) Evidence on parenting by same sex couples is inadequate.
I would agree with this, but I think that if you would make an effort to talk to people who were raised in a same sex household, you would find that they are no different than children raised by the American nuclear family.
Was my childhood perfect? No, but nobody has a perfect childhood. The only negative things in my upbringing came from groups like the FRC and the religious conservatives. From within the gay community and my family, there was nothing but support and acceptance.
Frankly, it was beneficial to me to be raised in a household where I never worried about wether or not my family was going to cast me out because of who I was.
5) Evidence suggests that children raised by homosexuals are more likely to experience gender and sexual disorders.
They quote a same sex marriage advocate who says that children raised in same sex households are more likely to have homosexual relationships. The APA removed homosexuality from the DSM (the Diagnostic and Statistics Manual) more than 20 years ago. The FRC doesn’t list any other “disorders” in this entry. All they say is that these children are more likely to be gay/bisexual and that girls raised by lesbians tend to be more masculine and boys raised by gay men tend to be less masculine.
Here’s an idea, maybe these aren’t disorders. Maybe those children (and the adults they grow into) feel accepted and allowed to be who/whatever they want to be. I can’t tell you how many adults I know personally who felt pressured by their family and community to fit some ideal mold. They felt like they had to be a man’s man or a delicate wilting flower.
Children raised by same sex couples aren’t raised under this kind of pressure. I was told my entire life that I would always be loved and accepted regardless of what/who I was. Surprise, surprise, I was allowed to learn how to think for myself rather than just parroting what my parents said. I feel sorry for people who grew up afraid to be honest with their family.
How is it better to feel like you have to choose between being who you are and your family? I know so many people who got married because they were told it was what you had to do. They thought everyone felt the way they did. This leads to a person living a lie, pretending to be someone they’re not, a person who comes to the difficult decision that they have to be honest with their family and accpet the fact that they could be disowned or shunned by the people who are supposed to love them.
“Experts” have occasionally pointed to the fact that there is a higher than normal rate of drug and alcohol abuse within the gay community and say this is proof that homosexuality is an unnatural state of being. Imagine if you had to live your life as something you’re not. Could you imagine having to find a way to cope with that? Do you have any idea how painful it would be have your family cast you aside like a peice of trash because you were honest with them? Now try to figure out how you feel if you not only had to deal with that pain, but it’s now compounded by the fact that until a few years ago, it was almost unheard of for someone to be prosecuted for beating someone because they were gay. In the south, it was almost a sport to go gay bashing. Is it any surprise then that there is a higher incident of drug and alcohol abuse?
6) Same sex “marriage” would undercut the norm of sexual fidelity within marriage.
Basically, they think that same sex couples are more likely to seek sexual partners outside their marriage. If you’re truly concerned about this, why aren’t you also protesting and speaking out against heterosexuals who have open marriage or who are swingers? Hell, why not go all the way and make audultery punishable by death like it was in the Bible?
They site a statistic that 79% of same sex couples surveyed in Vermont say that they have no problem with extramarital sex. How many heterosexual marriages are ruined by infedelity? According to the state department, it’s more than 50%.
If you’re going to use infedelity as a reason to prevent same sex marriage from being legal, maybe you should look into correcting the same issue in heterosexual couples first.
7) Same sex “marriage” would further isolate marriage from its procreative purpose
So, your arguement here is that marriage should exist for procreation, right? Do you adovocate that heterosexual couples should only be allowed to marry if they’re both able and willing to have children? Do you think single women who get pregnant outside of marriage either marry the father of their child or be forced to have an abortion? Both assertations make just as much sense.
If you’re going to argue that marriage’s primary purpose is procreation, then straight couples who can’t/don’t want to have children shouldn’t be allowed to get married either. I think most people would argue that forcing couples to undergo medical testing and require them to sign a legal document to ensure they have children makes no goddamn sense.
8) Same sex “marriage” would further deminish the exception of pateranl commitment.
Their argument here is that the avalibility of contraception and the sexual revolution have made it easier for men to abandon their children. They say that if same sex couples were allowed to be legally married, heterosexual men would justify abandoning their children since it’s become the social norm that children don’t need fathers.
You can’t make a sleazy person unsleazy by restricting the rights of an unrelated group. There have been and always will be dead beat dads and neglectful mothers. These people don’t give a damn about their own kids, why would they give a damn about what two men or two women they don’t know do?
Again, if this is your main complaint, where are your protests saying that a man and woman who have a child have to get married or abort the pregnancy? It follows the same logic.
9) Marriages thrive when spouses specialize in gender typical roles.
Oh, boy, here we go. They actually say that women are hapiest when their husband is the bred winner and they focus on child raising and house work. I’m glad they still live in the “Leave It to Beaver” universe, but the rest of society does not.
This statement not only offends me as a marriage equality advocate, but as a modern woman as well. This statement makes all of the work done by those in the past who fought for gender equality seem pointless. It’s a slap in the face to everyone who fought for equal rigts for any group. Every couple, regardless of gender, should be free to structure their relationship any way that works for them. This is possibly one of the most mysoginistic, sexist, and bigoted statements I’ve ever read in my life.
10) Women and marriage domesticate men.
So, married me live longer, earn more money, drink less, etc. Why on earth does it matter if the man lives with a woman or a man? I know just as many gay men who have settled down as I do straight men.
Being in a commited relationship is what domesticates a person, not what genetalia your partner has.
This artilce offends so many people and is riddled with inaccurate statements and half truths. I think one of the most telling things about this site is the fact that you can’t leave comments on this.
This author pressumes to know how I was raised and what my childhood was like. They have no idea. I was raised in a family where I was allowed to be myself. Am I a tomboy? Yes, but I was NEVER pressured to be that way. I know quite a few teens and young adults who were raised in same sex households and their personalities and interests cover all points of the spectrum.
How dare they pressume to know anything about me? They have no background or expertise that qualifies them to make these statements. They are all bigots who seek to force everyone else to be like them.