House legal team cites controversial parenting study
A Republican-controlled congressional body this week used a controversial new parenting study to argue that the Defense of Marriage Act is constitutional.
The Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group of the U.S. House of Representatives, commonly known as BLAG, filed a brief Tuesday with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the case of Karen Golinski, who is suing to force the federal government to recognize her marriage. BLAG has been involved in this and other marriage cases since last year, when President Obama decided the Department of Justice would no longer defend the constitutionality of a key section of DOMA.
BLAG’s brief marks the second time the study — which was conducted by University of Texas professor Mark Regnerus with the financial backing of socially conservative groups — has been used to defend DOMA in the case. The day after Regnerus’ study was released to the public last month, a conservative medical group highlighted it in a “friend of the court” brief. The American College of Pediatricians filed that brief at the request of the Alliance Defending Freedom, an influential religious right legal organization.
In its June 11 amicus brief, the American College of Pediatricians had referred to Regnerus’ study as “the most current research on child outcomes for children raised by same-sex couples” and wrongly asserted that Regnerus had found a number of “statistically significant differences where children raised by two women fared worse than children raised by married biological parents.”
In fact, Regnerus’ study has been widely criticized for comparing children raised by intact biological families to children raised by parents who had a same-sex relationship at some point, regardless of whether the child was actually raised by a stable, same-sex couple.
Golinski, who is represented by the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, responded in a brief earlier this month defending previous research concluding that children raised by same-sex parents fared no worse than those raised by opposite-sex parents. Golinksi’s brief criticized the American College of Pediatricians’ use of Regnerus’ study:
[The American College of Pediatricians] cites a recent paper by Mark Regnerus purporting to present empirical evidence of differences in outcomes for children raised by lesbian and gay parents. … This study, however, compared children of “intact biological famil[ies]” not to children raised by “intact” same-sex couples but instead primarily to children raised by single parents and in unstable family settings, with loosely-applied criteria for categorizing a parent as lesbian or gay. The paper itself concedes that it cannot answer any “questions of causation.” This paper does nothing to undercut the consistent social science findings over decades of research.
On Tuesday, BLAG answered with a brief that cites Regnerus’ study in defending what it describes as one of the rational bases behind DOMA: “the centuries-old wisdom that children generally benefit from being raised by their own biological mothers and fathers, and that law and government should encourage and support that outcome.”
BLAG’s brief describes the Regnerus study as one of “two significant studies” published in recent weeks “undermining Ms. Golinski’s social science theory.” BLAG adds:
Unlike virtually all of the previous studies in this area, the Regnerus study included a representative sample that was large enough to draw statistically powerful conclusions regarding comparative outcomes of people whose parents had homosexual relationships and those who were raised by their married biological mothers and fathers—and it discovered that the former group reported significantly worse outcomes on a large number of key indicators.
BLAG also pushes back on criticism of Regnerus’ study, citing a joint statement from 18 social scientists who have defended it. BLAG’s brief further states:
In any event, the study’s alleged shortcoming—that adults raised from infancy by same-sex couples are so rare that it is impossible to obtain a large sampling of them … “despite significant efforts” to do so… —only highlights the fact that all of the research in this field is in its infancy. That fact underscores the rationality of Congress’ decision to proceed with caution.
The other recent study BLAG cites in support of the premise that children are better off when raised by two heterosexual parents was published in the Journal of Marriage and Family in May. That study, authored by Daniel Potter of the American Institutes for Research, found that children raised in same-sex-parent families scored lower on academic tests than children raised in two-parent households by a straight couple. Potter found that children raised by same-sex couples scored similarly to children in other types of “nontraditional families” — meaning families that involve stepparents, single parents, cohabiting parents, or another nontraditional structure.
Thank you for a well researched and well written article.
There are plenty of dtnefiiions for those who wish to see them. No one is asking for 50% of anything, that is merely right talking points. The definition is simple, the top 1% of earners actually paying taxes which fall in line with those who make much less. Go look up historical tax brackets in the US, notice when we are about to fall into the gutter, like say the Great Depression or the Reagan Era, tax brackets for the top earners dropped significantly, which happened also very recently in our history with The Bush tax cuts and you’ll see the pattern, if you care to.
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You must get your share of strange comments on The American Independent but I will have to state that I have never seen one so strange and unconnected as ronb68.If he is a regular,you should keep an eye on him.
By the way,great articule,well written and argued.Keep up the good work.
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I plan to build a raised gdaren bed in my back yard to grow vegetables (tomatoes, squash, etc.). I am planning to raise the bed only about 5.5 from the ground. Is that enough to make a difference or does the bed have to be higher? It seems like there are lots of variations on bed height from about 5.5 to about 30 . I don’t know if this makes a difference, but I am in Zone 7. Thanks for the help.
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We’re smarter than the idtois in the UK, aren’t we? Er, I mean those of us who understand simple economic principles and pay taxes so the rioting may well happen here for the same reasons it happened there people who have gained off the backs of others will never want to work for it until you tell them they will work or starve.I am so tired of the rich being blamed for what happened in the UK and the rich here. Make no mistake: those who are blaming the rich will be helped more by such people than any damn wealthy democrat on the planet. As most democrats I know eschew organized religion, A faithless man will not offer you charity, unless he will be sent to jail to save his ass. With them, it is every man for himself.
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Potter, FTW. Nice work, Mr. Potter.
, the percent, I do beivele, is too high; punitive taxes are not effective, are not wise, and harm growth and development. With percents in use, you should not punish people with different percents, except as a criminal penalty process. If we continue to penalize success we should expect to fail as a nation; we should expect our best and brightest, and wealthiest, to leave.Returning to whether it’s cash; during the financial collapse, one of the banks that fell actually had hard assets that could have paid their debt. Due to the wealth punitive tax code, if they had tried to move that to liquidity to do so, it would have been preemptively taxed at something like 60%. The result was the bank falling, not because they weren’t worth it, but because the taxes prevented them from being worth it in the real world. That’s terrible policy, and bad for the economy. (No I don’t remember which one, IIRC they’re suing over the Fed transferring their assets in a fire sale currently.)Now, somewhat because of that wealth punitive system, and due to the way modern money products work, there are definite tastes of regressive taxation in our current system. When comparing a wealthy person’s complete tax filing to a median income worker, and summing their worth, it can appear the wealthy pay less, as a percent of the total, because of the nature of taxes attaching to money in their current design. But, making the wealthy cash out stocks, or what have you, to pay taxes because they over performed isn’t a wise choice; you’re simply going to concentrate the wealth in a smaller and smaller group who have learned to game the system more, like Buffett.So, wrapping again to my personal premise: The system is broken, completely. Tinkering with percents, or wealth punitive rules, will not help. We need a new, planar percent application, which has a low enough to be painless for the poor rate, that allows taxation of a larger swath of the economic activity of the nation, without the need for shielding and obfuscation of wealth, and without punishing success and wealth.
I am attempting a gedarn for the first time, and am unsure of the best spot to plan it. Our house block much of the sun in our yard, so the best spot is at the bottom of a small slope where the water runoff passes, leaving the ground almost always saturated and soft. I planned on building a bit of a raised bed. Is this a good spot to plan my gedarn or not? I watched a few videos online and one said it would be a good spot, but I wanted to be sure.Thanks in advance!
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