Peter Sprigg won’t address hate group charges but will lie about same-sex households

crossposted on Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters

Photobucket Peter Sprigg of the Family Research Council has yet to address the charges lodged against his group by the Southern Poverty Law Center regarding how they spread propaganda and junk science or misrepresent legitimate science to demonize the lgbt community.

But apparently he isn't too busy to continue misrepresenting legitimate science against the lgbt community.

Yesterday, a piece of his, Federal Report Confirms 'Nuclear Family' Best for Children's Health, was published in The Christian Post.

In this piece, Sprigg claims that nonpartisan groups support theories lodged by himself and FRC regarding the best households to raise children – i.e. the notion that two-parent heterosexual families are the best places to raise children as opposed to same-sex families:

 

During such debates, Family Research Council and other pro-family groups note social science evidence showing children raised by their own mother and father, who are committed to one another in a lifelong marriage, are happier (experience better mental health), healthier (have better physical health), and more prosperous (attain higher socioeconomic status) than children raised in any other household setting. For example, the non-partisan research group Child Trends summarized the evidence this way:

“Research clearly demonstrates that family structure matters for children, and the family structure that helps the most is a family headed by two biological parents in a low-conflict marriage.”

We point to this evidence in support of policies which would discourage divorce, cohabitation, and out-of-wedlock pregnancies, while encouraging sexual abstinence until marriage-as well as in opposing efforts to change the fundamental definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Yet more evidence along these lines can be found in a recently published federal study on “Family Structure and Children’s Health in the United States.” The report compares health outcomes on a variety of measures by family structure. Seven different categories of “families” are identified-“nuclear,” “single-parent,” “unmarried biological or adoptive,” “blended,” “cohabiting,” “extended,” and “other.”

Like with so many other times Sprigg refers to legitimate science to quantify his theories, there are several things wrong with his citations of these studies.

The first study he cited – The Child Trends study – was published in 2002.  And it never even addressed same-sex households.
The second study he cited – The Family Structure and Children's Health in the United States study – looked at  findings from the National Health Interview Survey between the years of 2001 and 2007. And it looked at married familes vs. unmarried families. Same-sex households was not specifically mentioned. The following classifications – seven different categories of “families” are identified-“nuclear,” “single-parent,” “unmarried biological or adoptive,” “blended,” “cohabiting,” “extended,” and “other” – are extremely vague at best in dealing with same-sex households because there is no specificity.

With these two studies, Sprigg seems to be following a pattern very familiar with him, i.e. twisting legitimate science to prove his theories even when said studies don't address his theories or contradict what he is trying to prove.

Last year, he published  The Top Ten Myths About Homosexuality. In this piece, he used the statements of an lgbt health organization to prove that the lgbt orientation itself is indicative of negative behaviors, i.e. depression, alcohol and drug abuse:

Even the pro-homosexual Gay& Lesbian Medical Association (GLMA) acknowledges:

• “Gay men use substances at a higher rate than the general population . . .”
• “Depression and anxiety appear to affect gay men at a higher rate . . . .”
• “ . . . [G]ay men have higher rates of alcohol dependence and abuse . . . .”
• “ . . . [G]ay men use tobacco at much higher rates than straight men . . . .”
• “Problems with body image are more common among gay men . . . and gay men are much more likely to experience an eating disorder . . . .”

The GLMA also confirms that:

• “ . . . [L]esbians may use tobacco and smoking products more often than heterosexual women use them.”
• “Alcohol use and abuse may be higher among lesbians.”
• “ . . . [L]esbians may use illicit drugs more often than heterosexual women.”

Homosexual activists generally attempt to explain these problems as results of “homophobic discrimination.” However, there is a serious problem with that theory—there is no empirical evidence that such psychological problems are greater in areas where disapproval of homosexuality is more intense.

But strange enough, the source which he cited – the Gay & Lesbian Medical Association – said that homophobia is the reason for many of these health problems. Sprigg deliberately omitted information pointing this out:

Sprigg:

“Depression and anxiety appear to affect gay men at a higher rate . . . .”

GMLA:

Depression and anxiety appear to affect gay men at a higher rate than in the general population. The likelihood of depression or anxiety may be greater, and the problem may be more severe for those men who remain in the closet or who do not have adequate social supports. Adolescents and young adults may be at particularly high risk of suicide because of these concerns.

Sprigg:

“ . . . [L]esbians may use illicit drugs more often than heterosexual women.

GMLA:

Research indicates that lesbians may use illicit drugs more often than heterosexual women. This may be due to added stressors in lesbian lives from discrimination. Lesbians need support from each other and from health care providers to find healthy releases, quality recreation, stress reduction, and coping techniques.

What Sprigg is doing now with these two studies regarding households raising children is simply more of the same.

It's worth mentioning that Sprigg is fastly becoming the “point man” who is called in front of state legislative committees to speak against marriage equality.

Pretty soon, the question regarding Sprigg's intentional distortion of scientific work will no longer be “how can he continue to get away with this?”

The question is going to become “how can someone professing to believe in Jesus continue to engage in such blatant deceptions?”

And “how can an organization claiming to stand up for morality and values (the Family Research Council) condone such behavior?”

Related posts:

Family Research Council has yet to come out with 'detailed response' against SPLC charges

Will the Family Research Council ever fulfill its promise and address SPLC's charges?

Same-sex couples can be effective parents, researchers find 
 
Peter Sprigg proves the Family Research Council to be a hate group (again)

Family Research Council defends itself with distorted studies . . . again
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  David Taffet

Indiana House Votes 70-26 in Favor of Constitutionally Banning Same-Sex Marriage and Civil Unions

Indiana

The Indiana House of Representatives has approved a constitutional amendment that would ban both same-sex marriage and civil unions in the Hoosier State.

The amendment states: "Marriage. Provides that only marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Indiana. Provides that a legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized. This proposed amendment has not been previously agreed to by a general assembly."

The Courier Press reports:

The House voted 70-26 for the ban, starting the clock on the long process of amending Indiana’s constitution.

It now moves to the Senate, where such a ban has passed with little trouble in recent years. If it clears the Senate, then a separately-elected House and Senate must once again approve the ban in either 2013 or 2014. Then, voters would have the final say in a November 2014 referendum.

A long and ugly road.

In related news, we'll likely get a final vote on civil unions in Hawaii tomorrow, and possibly a vote on marriage equality in Maryland by the end of the week. A lot happening. Stay tuned, folks…


Towleroad News #gay

—  David Taffet

Indiana House to Prohibit Same-Sex Marriage and Civil Unions in Valentine’s Day Vote?

Happy Valentine's Day from the Hoosier State. A vote is on tap in Indiana's House which would prohibit recognition of same-sex marriage and civil unions in the state, and that vote could come as early as today:

Indiana Political analysts expect that the ban is almost certain to pass, with Republicans in control of the Legislature.

The amendment states that only marriage between one man and one woman is valid in Indiana, and prohibits civil unions by stating that a legal status "substantially similar" to marriage for unmarried people is not valid.

Opponents have argued that the amendment isn't needed because Indiana law already bans gay marriage, but supporters said they are concerned that the courts could overturn that law.

Supporters also contend that traditional heterosexual marriage is best for raising children. Opponents said the amendment seeks to write discrimination into the state's constitution.

A House panel approved the measure last week.


Towleroad News #gay

—  David Taffet

State Department Creates New Visa Program for Same-Sex Partners of Foreign Service Employees

In a cable issued yesterday, the State Department informed its personnel worldwide that it has created a program under which non-citizen same-sex partners of Foreign Service employees can obtain visas to allow them to come to the U.S. when the State Department employee partner receives a domestic assignment.  An employee’s same-sex partner will now be eligible for a J-1 visa, allowing them to live and work in this country under certain conditions.  This development is the latest in a range of benefits extended to the partners of Foreign Service employees by the Obama administration.

The State Department’s action is an unfortunate necessity because, under current U.S. immigration law, while American citizens and legal permanent residents can sponsor their spouses and other family members for immigration purposes, they are not permitted to do for their same-sex partners.  As a result, a non-citizen partner must have an independent reason to remain in the country lawfully – such as a work or student visa.  Unfortunately, all too often, binational same-sex couples are left with the heart-wrenching choice between the country they love and the person they love.  That is why HRC supports the Uniting American Families Act, legislation that would end this inhumane treatment of loving, committed same-sex couples.

We applaud today’s action by the State Department on behalf of its LGBT employees, but also urge the Administration and Congress to take action to ensure that all binational same-sex couples are treated fairly by our nation’s immigration laws.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  David Taffet

Hawaii State House Approves Landmark Bill to Protect Same-Sex Couples

Today the Hawaii State House passed SB 232 SD1 HD1 by a 31-19 vote.  The bill provides that equal rights and responsibilities of married couples in Hawaii be afforded to thousands of non-married couples in the state – including same-sex couples.

“Today is a great day for the people of Hawaii,” said Alan Spector, co-chair for Equality Hawaii.  “The action taken by the House today sends a strong message that our state recognizes the importance of moving towards equality.  Providing equal rights to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community is long overdue and we thank all those who have stood with us to make this day a reality.”

After minor changes were made in the House, the bill now heads to back to the Senate for agreement on the amendments before heading to Gov. Neil Abercrombie for his signature.  SB 232 SD1 passed the Hawaii Senate on January 28, by a 19-6 vote.  Except for some technical corrections and implementation amendments, the bill is identical to HB 444, the civil unions bill passed in 2010.  That bill passed the House and Senate with near supermajorities before Gov. Linda Lingle vetoed it.  No override vote was held.

“The Human Rights Campaign congratulates the Hawaii House of Representatives for overwhelmingly supporting the equal dignity and respect of Hawaii’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families,” said HRC president Joe Solmonese.  “No child of a same-sex family should have to grow up with less protections or thinking their family is less legitimate or loving than others.”

The Human Rights Campaign and Equality Hawaii have worked closely together since 2008 to build both public and legislative support for civil unions.  Through this joint effort, tens of thousands of phone calls, emails, postcards and handwritten letters have been sent to legislators urging them to approve this legislation.  More on our work in Hawaii is  www.hrcbackstory.org/category/states/hawaii/.

When Hawaii’s civil unions law is signed, the state will join thirteen other states plus Washington, D.C. with laws providing an expansive form of state-level relationship recognition for gay and lesbian couples.  Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and Washington D.C. provide marriage to same-sex couples under state law.  New York and Maryland recognize out-of-jurisdiction same-sex marriages, but do not provide marriage licenses to same-sex couples in state.  Five other states—California, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, and Washington —provide same-sex couples with access to almost of all the state level benefits and responsibilities of marriage, through either civil unions or domestic partnerships.  A new law providing for civil unions in Illinois will take effect on June 1st.

Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, and Wisconsin provide gay and lesbian couples with limited rights and benefits, not all rights provided to married couples.  An attorney general opinion and subsequent court ruling in Rhode Island resulted in limited recognition of out-of-jurisdiction marriages of same-sex couples. California recognized marriage for same-sex couples between June and November of 2008, before voters approved Proposition 8, which purports to amend the state constitution to prohibit marriage equality.  Couples married during that window remain married under California law, but all other same-sex couples can only receive a domestic partnership within the state. The state will recognize out-of-jurisdiction same-sex marriages that occurred before November 5, 2008 as marriages and those that occurred on or after November 5, 2008 as similar to domestic partnerships.

Same-sex couples do not receive federal rights and benefits in any state.  For an electronic map showing where marriage equality stands in the states, please visit: www.HRC.org/State_Laws.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  David Taffet

Wyoming House Passes Ban on Recognition of Same-Sex Unions

Wyoming's HB 74 passed the House on its third reading Monday. The bill bans recognition of same-sex marriages and civil unions from outside the state:

Wyoming House Bill 74 now heads to the Senate, where its chances for passage appear good.

State Rep. Owen Petersen, R-Mountain View, the bill's sponsor, said the legislation is needed to resolve a conflict in Wyoming law, which defines marriage as a contract "between a male and a female person" but also recognizes any valid marriage performed outside the state. Other supporters have said the bill will help to hold back government intrusion into Wyoming traditions and culture.

Opponents said the bill is unnecessary, violates the rights of gays and lesbians to marry, and would create havoc for legally married out-of-state gay couples traveling in Wyoming.


Towleroad News #gay

—  admin

NYDN: ‘The battle over same-sex marriage is about to heat up again in the state Senate’

The first line of the article in today’s New York Daily News says it all. The battle for marriage is on in New York:

The battle over same-sex marriage is about to heat up again in the state Senate.

Sen. Thomas Duane (D-Manhattan), the Senate’s biggest booster of gay marriage, said he’ll introduce legislation “within weeks” to legalize same-sex marriage – and will push for a vote before the end of June.

“I think everyone is aware that we have to make the lives of New Yorkers better in every way – economically, as well as to provide equality to New York families,” Duane said Monday.

Although a similar bill was soundly defeated in the Senate in 2009, Duane and other supporters believe Gov. Cuomo’s support can finally tilt the political landscape.

Cuomo, whose favorable rating reached a soaring 70% in this week’s Siena poll, called for the legalization of gay marriage in his State of the State address earlier this month.

“I think the governor is starting in a strong political place with the people on his side and the wind at his back,” said Ross Levi, executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda.

“That is helpful.”

Sen. Thomas Duane (D-Manhattan), the Senate’s biggest booster of gay marriage, said he’ll introduce legislation “within weeks” to legalize same-sex marriage – and will push for a vote before the end of June.

“I think everyone is aware that we have to make the lives of New Yorkers better in every way – economically, as well as to provide equality to New York families,” Duane said Monday.

Although a similar bill was soundly defeated in the Senate in 2009, Duane and other supporters believe Gov. Cuomo’s support can finally tilt the political landscape.

Cuomo, whose favorable rating reached a soaring 70% in this week’s Siena poll, called for the legalization of gay marriage in his State of the State address earlier this month.

Marriage equality legislation, sponsored by Assemblyman Danny O’Donnell, has passed twice in the New York Assembly. The bill failed in the State Senate on December 2, 2009 by a vote of 38 – 24. Republicans now control the Senate (Again. The GOP controlled the Senate for decades until the 2009-2010 session.) But, the GOP leader won’t prevent a vote on the bill, we’re told:

Scott Reif, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-Nassau), said his boss opposes gay marriage, but would not block the measure from coming up for a vote.

This one is going to be intense. Having a supportive Governor with strong polling numbers on our side should help.

And, thanks to Fight Back NY, a lot of the state’s politicians know there’s a political price to pay for opposing equality.




AMERICAblog Gay

—  admin

Latest papal bigot eruption: “same-sex ‘marriage’ perverts essence and goal of family”

Yawn. It’s not only offensive, at this point it’s just tiring to hear this gasbag find different ways to say the same damn thing — that LGBTs are defective, perverted and otherwise destroying society.

This is from EWTN News:

As efforts to legalize same-sex “marriage” proceed in the United States and countries around the world, Pope Benedict issued strong remarks on Jan. 14, saying that gay “marriage” perverts the “essence and goal of the family.”

Addressing officials from the city of Rome and the Italian region of Lazio, Pope Benedict said that legislation and policies that promote same-sex unions end up “penalizing” heterosexual couples, “who, not without effort, seek to maintain stable emotional ties which are juridically guaranteed and publicly recognized.”

“To this end,” he stressed, “the various components of society must agree on the objectives of education, in order for human love not to be reduced to an article of consumption, but to be seen and lived as a fundamental experience which gives existence meaning and a goal.”

FUN FACT: The conservative Catholic-bent EWTN (Eternal Word Television Network) studio and HQ, ironically, is located not far from where Kate’s mom and dad used to live in Birmingham, AL. It was founded by Mother Mary Angelica of the Annunciation, who suffered a stroke several years ago, but is alive and well in perpetual repeats on the channel of her “Mother Angelica Live” program. Here (2000) she advises a caller on how to avoid purgatory.


Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

State Department Changes Forms to Include Same-Sex Parents

As reported over the weekend, in late December, the State Department will modify applications for passports and birth records for children of U.S. citizens born overseas to reflect that both parents may be of the same sex.  The forms, which formerly asked only for information on a child’s  “mother” and “father,” will now request “mother or parent 1” and “father or parent 2”.  We applaud the State Department and Secretary Clinton for taking this important step to recognize the many different family structures in our nation, including those headed by same-sex couples.


Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  admin

U.S. Passport Applications To Acknowledge Same-Sex Parents

PassStarting in February, passport applications will start to recognize gay and lesbian families:

The State Department has decided to make U.S. passport application forms "gender neutral" by removing references to mother and father, officials said, in favor of language that describes one's parentage somewhat less tenderly. The change is "in recognition of different types of families," according to a statement issued just before Christmas that drew widespread attention Friday after a Fox News report.

The announcement of the change was buried at the end of a Dec. 22 news release, titled "Consular Report of Birth Abroad Certificate Improvements," that highlighted unrelated security changes.

Sounds like progress to me, but the usual suspects have vocally opposed the changes. Wingnut Tony Perkins said the following in a press release:

"Only in the topsy-turvy world of left-wing political correctness could it be considered an 'improvement' for a birth-related document to provide less information about the circumstances of that birth. Yet that is the result of the State Department's decision to remove the words 'mother' and 'father' from Consular Reports of Birth Abroad."

He continued:

"This is clearly designed to advance the causes of same-sex 'marriage' and homosexual parenting without statutory authority, and violates the spirit if not the letter of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). But it does so at the expense of fundamental biological reality – and social reality as well. The State Department's abolition of motherhood and fatherhood would be almost comical, if it did not fly in the face of the mounting social science evidence that children are most likely to thrive when born into a family led by their own married biological mother and father."


Towleroad News #gay

—  admin