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Cameron: "Death activists" are "weakening the U.S."
July 31, 2005 8:53 AM   Subscribe

Don't like the results of legitimate scientific research? Make up your own! Conservatives (including GW) love to quote Paul Cameron of the Family Research Council on the effects of gay parenting. This Boston Globe articles tells what everyone should know about the man and his methodology.
posted by barjo (98 comments total)

 
You know exactly how conservatives (including GW) will do science when they come up with a primary philosophy like this:

"That's not the way the world really works anymore... [W]e create our own reality."

What more needs to be said in the face of such lunacy?
posted by Rothko at 9:00 AM on July 31, 2005


I seriously doubt that President Bush bases his policy ideas on this subject on scientific research, nor should he.

He's basing his policy ideas on his religious beliefs.

This is as it should be.

This is not really an arena where scientific research is of much use or relevance.
posted by Shouting at 9:04 AM on July 31, 2005


This is not really an arena where scientific research is of much use or relevance.

Care to explain why this is an exception, when we use statistics and other scientific measurement tools for other sociological studies — like the (federal) Census, for example?
posted by Rothko at 9:07 AM on July 31, 2005


Policy ideas should be based on the Constitution he swore to uphold and the welfare of the American People (who he works for), not his religion.

Cameron is a sick sad man, and it goes to show you that even when someone's thoroughly discredited, if the message he peddles fit their agenda, people will use his "research" to further their goals. Even when they know it's false and bullshit--... Cameron's work is controversial even among conservative groups. For example, the Traditional Values Coalition claims to speak for 43,000 churches. For three years, the coalition has quoted Cameron's studies on its website in an article headlined, 'Report Shows Homosexual Foster Parents Apt To Molest Children," and has told its membership to 'read and distribute Dr. Cameron's report."
But when The Boston Globe asked the Traditional Values Coalition last week about Cameron, the group responded within minutes by removing all references to Cameron from its website. ...

posted by amberglow at 9:10 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting, effective trolling depends on not being so obviously inflammatory at the start. You have to at least pretend that your viewpoint is reasonable. You've done already shot your wad.

Just a tip.
posted by jscalzi at 9:10 AM on July 31, 2005


Sorry, barjo, with two comments your thread has been permanently converted into a performance comedy piece.

Anyway: just more pulling the wool over everyone's eyes by Bush to justify religiously motivated legislation. Scientific backing can make anything sound credible if everyone is too lazy to fact-check.
posted by invitapriore at 9:11 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting: I seriously doubt that President Bush bases his policy ideas on this subject on scientific research, nor should he. He's basing his policy ideas on his religious beliefs. This is as it should be.

And what religion would that be? The state sanctioned religion? Because it certainly isn't my religion. Your dismissive arguments and frequency of posting is attracting attention.
posted by furtive at 9:21 AM on July 31, 2005


The reason, Rothko, is that we are not performing a cost/benefit analysis here. We are discussing human values and traditions. These are not rational issues.

First, the burden of proof, when basic changes to human traditions are proposed, falls entirely on those who propose that change... not vice versa. In the 1950s and 1960s, liberals likewise argued that no logical argument could possibly be presented against welfare. The result of welfare in the black community is a 70% illegitimacy rate and a culture of dependency that nobody anticipated.

Scientific studies will not tell us why virtually every society traditionally proscribed homosexual conduct. That information is contained within thousands of years of narrative history.

You can find an excellent discussion of these issues at: http://jkalb.org/node/25?PHPSESSID=b63817cb22680bcb64c7b4d53414d10f

And, before everybody gets all excited, I have no fixed opinion one way or another about the issue presented in this post. I just know that tinkering with the most basic traditions of human society presents an array of hazards that cannot be anticipated... those inevitable unanticipated consequences.
posted by Shouting at 9:23 AM on July 31, 2005


Jesus, is everyone's sarcasm meter turned off this morning. I feel ya shouting.
posted by jmgorman at 9:23 AM on July 31, 2005


Well, furtive, that means that my arguments are convincing and powerful... and that those who disagree fear me.

It's a compliment.
posted by Shouting at 9:24 AM on July 31, 2005


I don't know what these people are talking about. Paul Cameron is awesome. How could you not like a guy who compares gay sex to heroin?

“Untrammeled homosexuality can take over and destroy a social system,” says Cameron. “If you isolate sexuality as something solely for one’s own personal amusement, and all you want is the most satisfying orgasm you can get- and that is what homosexuality seems to be-then homosexuality seems too powerful to resist. The evidence is that men do a better job on men and women on women, if all you are looking for is orgasm.” So powerful is the allure of gays, Cameron believes, that if society approves that gay people, more and more heterosexuals will be inexorably drawn into homosexuality. “I’m convinced that lesbians are particularly good seducers,” says Cameron. “People in homosexuality are incredibly evangelical,” he adds, sounding evangelical himself. “It’s pure sexuality. It’s almost like pure heroin. It’s such a rush. They are committed in almost a religious way. And they’ll take enormous risks, do anything.” He says that for married men and women, gay sex would be irresistible. “Martial sex tends toward the boring end,” he points out. “Generally, it doesn’t deliver the kind of sheer sexual pleasure that homosexual sex does” So, Cameron believes, within a few generations homosexuality would be come the dominant form of sexual behavior.

This guy is classic!
posted by schroedinger at 9:29 AM on July 31, 2005


The reason, Rothko, is that we are not performing a cost/benefit analysis here. We are discussing human values and traditions. These are not rational issues.

This is not cost/benefit analysis. This is a sociological study. You ignored my example of how sociological studies are done with scientific methods.

This is a sociological study, like any other, and deserves to be judged on the merits of its science, just as any other similar work would be evaluated.

Cameron is not using science to conduct his studies. Therefore his conclusions are suspect for that reason alone, let alone suspect for injecting his personal agenda into his conclusions.

Further, given the faith-based philosophy that conservatives espouse, from George Bush down, it should be no surprise they believe in this nonsense.

The problem starts when the rest of us who live in a reality-based world have to deal with the negative consequences of these and other faith-based policies.
posted by Rothko at 9:35 AM on July 31, 2005


schroedinger's quote doesn't surprise me at all. I don't think you'll find anyone who has devoted their whole life to preventing gay sex between others, who isn't fighting some kind of inner battle with their own same-sex desires. I can't imagine how miserable these people must be. (I just wish they weren't so effective at spreading their misery to the rest of us.)
posted by BoringPostcards at 9:36 AM on July 31, 2005


First, the burden of proof, when basic changes to human traditions are proposed, falls entirely on those who propose that change.

I have two words for you: Says WHO?

I challenge the very fundamental assumption behind your post. The United States are founded upon a social contract, and that contract is its Constitution and its Bill of Rights.

Nowhere in there does it say anything remotely like what you are claiming. It DOES, however, guarantee equal rights and equal representation under the law for ALL people within the country.

So quite the opposite of what you claim, the assumption is that if one group is allowed to adopt, than ALL groups must be allowed to adopt. The burden of proof is therefore on YOU (or whoever is attempting oppression) to show that a certain group should not be alowed to adopt. Or participate in any other state-sponsored activity.

If you cannot provide a convincing set of reasons that someone should be denied the same activities as everyone else, then by the very basis OF our society, they must be allowed to participate.

And PS - get over yourself. Citing opinion as fact and introducing completely specious arguments (welfare? huh?) does in no way constitute "powerful and convincing" arguments.
posted by InnocentBystander at 9:38 AM on July 31, 2005


This is not really an arena where scientific research is of much use or relevance.

RIP my brain
posted by mcsweetie at 9:39 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting : "We are discussing human values and traditions. These are not rational issues."

Actually, I believe we are discussing the effects of gay parenting (the real world effects). If we were discussing our opinions of gay parenting, your comments would stand, but the effects themselves exist independently of how we feel about them.

Shouting : "First, the burden of proof, when basic changes to human traditions are proposed, falls entirely on those who propose that change... not vice versa."

Er...fine, but even so, we aren't discussing proposing changes to human traditions, we are discussing supposedly academic studies of the effects of gay parenting.

Shouting : "Scientific studies will not tell us why virtually every society traditionally proscribed homosexual conduct. That information is contained within thousands of years of narrative history. "

I dunno, the Japanese and Greeks did pretty well with it. But, that aside: we are discussing the methodology in scientific studies, not whether they are useful or not. If they are not useful, Paul Cameron should have no reason to pretend his methodology is scientific. If they are useful, he does a disservice by pretending they are scientific.

Shouting : "Well, furtive, that means that my arguments are convincing and powerful... and that those who disagree fear me.

"It's a compliment."


No, it doesn't mean that your arguments are convincing. (Not Godwinning, just an analogy, no similarity implied): Jews being afraid when Hitler called them a scourge was not an indicator that his arguments were convincing. "Powerful", perhaps (as in, "possibly resulting in bad things happening"). I would guess that people here are responding to you because they find your arguments reflect those of people who are scary and powerful. Saying someone is scary and powerful is not necessarily an insult (God is probably scary and powerful to Satan, to put it in an analogy you might dig), but not necessarily a compliment either (Satan is probably scary and powerful to a Christian).
posted by Bugbread at 9:39 AM on July 31, 2005




"The problem starts when the rest of us who live in a reality-based world have to deal with the negative consequences of these and other faith-based policies."

Nobody is forcing you to do anything. You just made that up to dramatize yourself.

"If you cannot provide a convincing set of reasons that someone should be denied the same activities as everyone else, then by the very basis OF our society, they must be allowed to participate."

Well, no you are wrong. This issue is subject to the political process and will be decided there. This may offend your sense of justice.

That's too bad.
posted by Shouting at 9:41 AM on July 31, 2005




Shouting : "Nobody is forcing you to do anything."

Correct. We could choose to ignore the negative effects of faith-based effects on reality. But, by the same token, you should not be so perturbed by the negative effects, as you see them, of homosexuality on culture, because nobody is forcing you to deal with them.
posted by Bugbread at 9:44 AM on July 31, 2005


Interesting, isn't it that it's so important to combat a "troll?"

Also, interestingly, the number of visitors to my weblog increased over the past few days by 400 hits a day.

You folks are certainly doing a great job of driving me into silence.
posted by Shouting at 9:47 AM on July 31, 2005


If science is irrelevant, and religion is what it's all about, they why have the scientific facade?
posted by Freen at 9:47 AM on July 31, 2005


Flat earthers have never had much need for empirical evidence. The belief that the earth is flat is a matter of personal conviction, the rights to which are constantly under assault by those philistines who claim to have "proof" that it isn't.
posted by gallois at 9:47 AM on July 31, 2005


oh, yeah right, that way you have have the illusion of falsifiability and repeatability. All those wonderful qualities of science that got us things like cell phones, laptops and satellites.
posted by Freen at 9:48 AM on July 31, 2005


Scientific studies will not tell us why virtually every society traditionally proscribed homosexual conduct. That information is contained within thousands of years of narrative history.

The problem is, shouting, you haven't actually read that history, have you? If you had, you would discover that homosexual conduct has been accepted and even encouraged by societies since the beginning of recorded history. In fact, in some societies it was considered an important part of becoming a man.

Or did you mean that judeochristian societies condemed it? In which case, I can only respond with "why should modern society care about the irrational homophobia of the ancient Hebrew tribes that stems from their feuds with the Assyrians?"
posted by cmonkey at 9:48 AM on July 31, 2005


This is the last time I'll bother with you, shouting, since you are clearly just trolling.

But to block quoth from the 14th Amendment to the Constitution:

Section. 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

ALL. PERSONS. Period. Full stop. End of story. QED.

If by some chance you actually believe what you are spouting, you are quite simply wrong and desperately need to take a class in US government.
posted by InnocentBystander at 9:50 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting: We are discussing human values and traditions. These are not rational issues.

Of course they are. Bush should be basing his decisions on science, not religion. First of all, because of the separation of church and state... but even that aside, science tells us what is true. If gay couples do not statistically "harm" their children any more than heterosexuals, then there is no reason not to let them adopt children.

Human "values and traditions" should not be subject to rationality? What kind of world do you live in? Many people had religious and "values"-based objections to desegregation, abolition of slavery, oppression of women, minorities, etc. Are you saying that back then, we should have used religion to justify these atrocities, as many did? This is the same thing. You are a sick person.
posted by aerify at 9:50 AM on July 31, 2005


I have a bachelor's degree is Russian history, literature, language and culture from the University of Illinois, as well as a bachelor's degree in English literature. I'm pretty well read in the classic literature.

In addition, I have a B.A. in music.

I have an M.A. in multimedia from New York University.

I've taught at several universities, including English literature, and now, in design and programming.

What's your resume?
posted by Shouting at 9:51 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting : "Interesting, isn't it that it's so important to combat a 'troll?'"

Well, yeah, since this a community built on discourse and links, trolls are anathema. For precision electronics factory, dust and static electricity are anathema. For outdoor parties, rainstorms are anathema. Dunno why you find that interesting, but more power to ya.

Shouting : "Also, interestingly, the number of visitors to my weblog increased over the past few days by 400 hits a day."

Ah, well, seeing this, I finally get the reason for the provocative stance (I gathered that you believe what you write, and so are not a troll): PR. Sorry for having responded.

Freen : "If science is irrelevant, and religion is what it's all about, they why have the scientific facade?"

I've got to learn conciseness from you.
posted by Bugbread at 9:54 AM on July 31, 2005


Well, I didn't cite the number of hits for the reason you suggested.

I'm just telling you that your junior high school tactics are proving counter productive.

You folks need to learn to cope with disagreement.
posted by Shouting at 9:55 AM on July 31, 2005


Er...which junior high school tactics?
posted by Bugbread at 9:56 AM on July 31, 2005


shouting "Well, I didn't cite the number of hits for the reason you suggested."

And, out of curiosity, why did you cite it, then?
posted by Bugbread at 9:57 AM on July 31, 2005


Guys, ignore the troll. You want to talk about research, and the problem that the administration has with research that doesn't match up with the research that they wish existed, don't end up wrestling with the pig. You just get yourself covered in mud, and the pig likes it.
posted by deanc at 9:58 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting: Shame that with all that education, actually understanding the Constitution of the United States appears to have eluded you.

"Also, interestingly, the number of visitors to my weblog increased over the past few days by 400 hits a day."

Everybody likes to see a monkey dance.
posted by jscalzi at 9:58 AM on July 31, 2005


Now, I do have other things to do.

I will continue posting here. My posts have been civil and well reasoned, and they will continue to be.

Which of you is the owner of this site? You seem to speak as if you were the owner of this site.

I'm pretty sure that I'm operating within the boundaries of courtesy and respect within this site. I'm not so sure about a number of my respondents.

When the proprietor of this site finds fault with what I have to say, I'll consider it. The rest of you might want to consider that you are just guests here too.
posted by Shouting at 9:59 AM on July 31, 2005


I cited the number of hits to point out to you that your actions are counterproductive.

You are only bringing more and more attention to the things I have not say.

If what I have to say is such anathema, a clever strategist might well do everything in his power to limit the impact.

You've increased the impact of what I've said by a thousand times.
posted by Shouting at 10:01 AM on July 31, 2005


Buh? Marital sex tends toward the boring end? It's only as boring as the couple allows it to be, ne? It's not like it's impossible for a married dude to put his weenie in his wifes bottom (or for the wife to insert things into her husband's bum). Or would the distiguished doctor object to that, too? And anyway, how would he know about the "sheer sexual pleasure" of homosexual sex. Has he ever had any??

The Ancient Greeks are considered the cradle of civilisation, right? Weren't they totally down with homosexuality?

(Man, my question mark key seems to be stuck this afternoon.)
posted by ddf at 10:02 AM on July 31, 2005


People, please leave the troll by itslef. It will wither when you stop responding. Like 111, etc.
posted by signal at 10:04 AM on July 31, 2005


signal,

You are quite wrong.

I will continue to post when and as often as I like.

I already told you that the junior high school tactics will not work on me.

Now, I will take my leave, kids. And, you will continue to hear from me. If you don't like it, don't read my postings.
posted by Shouting at 10:06 AM on July 31, 2005


I seriously doubt that President Bush bases his policy ideas on this subject on scientific research, nor should he.

He's basing his policy ideas on his religious beliefs.

This is as it should be.

This is not really an arena where scientific research is of much use or relevance.


Then why lie about it, and pretend there's a scientific rationalization?
posted by 31d1 at 10:07 AM on July 31, 2005


"My posts have been... well reasoned."

As with the studies in question in the FPP, this assertion does not stand up to more than the most casual scrutiny.
posted by jscalzi at 10:07 AM on July 31, 2005


Hey Shouting, Metafilter's liberal in-crowd doesn't fear you, they simply don't like anybody who disagrees with them. However this should never be taken as "proof" that your opinions have any merit at all, nor should you restrain yourself from broadening the manner in which you express those opinions. You should also not delude yourself that my defense of your right to post here indicates that I take you or what you say seriously: you have indeed shown yourself to be an unthinking one-note right-wing asshole. ("Civil and well reasoned"? Don't bogart that joint.)
posted by davy at 10:10 AM on July 31, 2005


deanc : "Guys, ignore the troll. You want to talk about research, and the problem that the administration has with research that doesn't match up with the research that they wish existed"

Well (speaking realistically), there just isn't all that much to discuss about it. Either nobody who disagrees shows up, in which case we do the patented "stamp around and agree about how lousy the administration is" dance, or someone who disagrees shows up, in which case we get this thread.

Shouting : "Which of you is the owner of this site? You seem to speak as if you were the owner of this site."

Mathowie is the owner of the site. Jessamyn is his assistant editor. Depending on how you define "self-policing", we might all (yep, even you) be describable as being the police of the site.

Shouting : "If what I have to say is such anathema, a clever strategist might well do everything in his power to limit the impact."

Yes and no (gotta do a bit of a deeper reading on what I said). You said " Interesting, isn't it that it's so important to combat a 'troll?'". My response is that, to me, it isn't so interesting, because trolls are anathema. And I agree that, if you were a troll, as some folks think, those folks would be best served by ignoring you. However, I don't believe you're a troll, so I'm not really bound by the same strategic considerations.

If you mean to limit the impact of what you have to say, outside of the context of trolling: since the people in power agree with you, remaining silent with folks espousing the same opinion wouldn't really limit impact, while presenting counterarguments might.

So, if you were a troll, ignoring you would be best (ok, actually, practically speaking, convincing the site owner to ban you would be the optimal solution). If you were espousing an unsupported (as in "popular support", not "well-founded") and dangerous view, ignoring you might also be a good idea. If you were espousing a popularly supported and dangerous view, disagreeing with you might be a good idea.
posted by Bugbread at 10:14 AM on July 31, 2005


I have a bachelor's degree is Russian history, literature, language and culture from the University of Illinois...

Good for you!
posted by ericb at 10:17 AM on July 31, 2005


POO POO POO POO POO POO POO BUMLICK POO POO POO POO POO POO POOP POO POO POO POO POO POO POO POO POO IF ANYONE DISPUTES OR DISPLAYS ANNOYANCE WITH THIS CAST IRON POO FACT IT MERELY HIGHLIGHTS THE UNQUESTIONABLE POWER OF MY INVECTIVE AND PROVES THAT THEY ALL FEAR ME BECAUSE THEY HAVE NO RESPONSE TO MY ALL-CONQUERING POO POO POO POO POO POO POO POO POOP JUGGERNAUT
posted by Pretty_Generic at 10:17 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting: “signal, You are quite wrong. I will continue to post when and as often as I like.

Why did you think I was refering to you? All I said was ”please leave the troll by itself".
Kind of gave your game away, huh?
posted by signal at 10:19 AM on July 31, 2005


Pretty_Generic, this interests me and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
posted by Balisong at 10:20 AM on July 31, 2005


From the article:

"President Bush had a ready answer when asked in January for his view of adoption by same-sex couples: 'Studies have shown that the ideal is where a child is raised in a married family with a man and a woman,' the president said."

Whom is the family married to? Are the man and the woman also married, and if so to whom? Or is he talking about those poly-pagan group-marriage things, where everybody in the family is married to everybody else in the family? Is this a same-sex or mixed-sex family, and if the latter is same-sex sex put on an equal footing with opposite-sex sex? And isn't it kinda unfair and unbalanced to make one child put up with all those adults, even if s/he's lucky enough to not be related to them?
posted by davy at 10:26 AM on July 31, 2005


If I may interupt for a second: the article's title may help us out here: "Beliefs drive research agenda of new think tanks."

Dr. Cameron puts out shitty "research" (if you can even call it that), publishes it in a shitty "peer-reviewed journal" (if you can even call it that) to try to make anti-gay arguments from a "scientific" perspective.

His work is completely deceptive--poor studies, published in journals that are not truly peer-reviewed with veto power and that charge authors for publishing--and totally misleading. He's been kicked out of professional organizations. I couldn't believe his work made it into the Mass Supreme Court decision; some court clerk isn't doing his or her job. He's making a farce of true academic research and statistics, and it's a pity journalists, judges, and politicians continue to use his "work" as evidence.

It's all fine and dandy if politicians want to say (ignorant) things they believe about homosexuals, but it's misleading and unprofessional to use such information to support their beliefs.
posted by gramcracker at 10:26 AM on July 31, 2005


Why did you think I was refering to you? All I said was ”please leave the troll by itself".

Zing!
posted by grouse at 10:39 AM on July 31, 2005


And isn't it kinda unfair and unbalanced to make one child put up with all those adults, even if s/he's lucky enough to not be related to them?

Davy, can you quantify this "unfairness" or "unbalance" assertion with some statistical test? Can you give us a p-value of this "unfairness" test, for example? Anything?
posted by Rothko at 10:48 AM on July 31, 2005


"Martial sex ...it doesn’t deliver the kind of sheer sexual pleasure that homosexual sex does."

Its official! Medical research has proved that Gay Sex is the HOTTTTTT!!!
posted by jmccorm at 10:50 AM on July 31, 2005


He says that like it's a bad thing.
posted by InnocentBystander at 10:53 AM on July 31, 2005


Rothko : "Davy, can you quantify this 'unfairness' or 'unbalance' assertion with some statistical test? Can you give us a p-value of this 'unfairness' test, for example? Anything?"

(Sorry, but I really can't tell: are you playing along with davy's joke, or are you seriously contesting him regarding his joke?)
posted by Bugbread at 10:54 AM on July 31, 2005


Also, interestingly, the number of visitors to my weblog increased over the past few days by 400 hits a day. You folks are certainly doing a great job of driving me into silence.

Dude, you know how drivers inevitably slow down and gawk at the carnage of a car accident, simultaneously horrified that they are enthralled at the possibility of witnessing someone's tragic end?

That's MeFi folk viewing your website.

Well, furtive, that means that my arguments are convincing and powerful... and that those who disagree fear me. It's a compliment.

You mistake folk's incentive here.

Your comments are not addressed because they are convincing or powerful, but because they are abysmally stupid.

MeFi doesn't tolerate stupid people at all well.

That is the sole reason you are attracting attention.

Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments would be a most enlightening read for you, except that you are, in fact, too incompetent to realize its application to your life!
posted by five fresh fish at 10:57 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting sucks more every day.
posted by mosch at 11:05 AM on July 31, 2005


Well (speaking realistically), there just isn't all that much to discuss about it. Either nobody who disagrees shows up, in which case we do the patented "stamp around and agree about how lousy the administration is" dance, or someone who disagrees shows up, in which case we get this thread.

Not necessarily. Someone could come to the thread defending the integrity of Dr. Cameron's work... someone could even defend the propriety of fudging research, but certain people haven't even bothered to do that.
posted by deanc at 11:06 AM on July 31, 2005


That's MeFi folk viewing your website.


Yeah, five, ParisParamus thinks it's a dating site.
posted by three blind mice at 11:08 AM on July 31, 2005


Hilarious, jmcorm.
posted by digaman at 11:09 AM on July 31, 2005


Shouting: First, the burden of proof, when basic changes to human traditions are proposed, falls entirely on those who propose that change.

These are reasonable, widely held viewpoint. They're wrong, but Shouting's ideas need to be challenged with fact and better argument, not dismissed as trollish. Thanks to amberglow, bugbread and innocentBystander for rising to the challenge.

signal: Kind of gave your game away, huh?
grouse: Zing!
Way too cheap for a zing. I'd give you a 'groan' at best.
posted by Popular Ethics at 11:30 AM on July 31, 2005


Yeah, I'm wondering why we don't see more of that in the news. "Studies show that gay sex is much, much better than straight sex! Find out more after these messages from our sponsor..."
posted by hattifattener at 11:32 AM on July 31, 2005


Holy shit

And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.

Fuckin. Why did we build these institutions. Why did we, Jefferson, Franklin, those before us in Europe, why did they value education? What despotic pool of cess did science and analytical reason lift us from?

Anyway that's dodgy as hell.
posted by nervousfritz at 11:36 AM on July 31, 2005


Actually, the link that schroedinger provided suggests that, according to Cameron, gay sex is superior to martial sex. Unfortunately, I have no experience with the latter, so I can't say.
posted by namret at 12:06 PM on July 31, 2005


namret : "Actually, the link that schroedinger provided suggests that, according to Cameron, gay sex is superior to martial sex."

So, how does that work out for gay military personnel? Do the two average out to the middle, does the bad override the good, does the good override the bad, or...lord forbid...do the two stack up, resulting in the best sex in the world taking place in Marines barracks?

And would martial law increase the pleasure of sex for everyone in a community?
posted by Bugbread at 12:23 PM on July 31, 2005


theres too many assholes around here these days.... whats a satapher to do? ;..(
posted by Satapher at 12:47 PM on July 31, 2005


Two articles from Slate (by liberals) skeptical about the politics, bold claims and mushy social science on both sides:
Adopting Premises
The sneaky debate over legalizing adoptions by gay couples.
By William Saletan
Posted Thursday, Feb. 7, 2002, at 1:34 PM PT

Several million American children reportedly live in homes with at least one gay parent. In most cases, the same-sex domestic partner of that parent has no legal parental rights or responsibilities. This week, the American Academy of Pediatrics declared that these "co-parents" should be allowed to undertake such rights and responsibilities by adopting their partners' children. The announcement has provoked outcries from conservatives, with each side claiming to represent science against politics. In truth, each side's "science" is loaded with politics. Here's how they fudge the data. [More]

And more recently:

The Gay Science
What do we know about the effects of same-sex parenting?
By Ann Hulbert
Posted Friday, March 12, 2004, at 12:16 PM PT

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage: So far, the gay marriage debate has been about rights and romance and, of course, religion. Advocates and opponents alike have been notably quiet about a fourth "R"—raising children. But when the rhetoric heats up, we'll doubtless hear plenty from each side about the research on same-sex parenting and its effects on kids. What's surprising is that both camps have converged lately on a very basic point: The existing science is methodologically flawed and ideologically skewed. Don't count on that consensus, however, to dampen the feud.

You wouldn't guess from the current "expert" position on homosexual child-rearing that the data are in any doubt. Two years ago, the American Academy of Pediatrics put its imprimatur on the stance adopted by the American Psychiatric Association in 2000. An article in Pediatrics pronounced that "a growing body of scientific literature demonstrates that children who grow up with 1 or 2 gay and/or lesbian parents fare as well in emotional, cognitive, social, and sexual functioning as do children whose parents are heterosexual."

But behind the scenes, skeptics have emerged—and from an unexpected quarter. [More]
posted by Jason Malloy at 12:52 PM on July 31, 2005


Slate.com : "You wouldn't guess from the current 'expert' position on homosexual child-rearing that the data are in any doubt."

I dunno, I would've. Both sides have too much invested ideologically to trust either side's experts.
posted by Bugbread at 1:00 PM on July 31, 2005


just know that tinkering with the most basic traditions of human society presents an array of hazards that cannot be anticipated...

there's a very long tradition of slavery, too. should we reinstate it? it's a tradition, after all.


In the 1950s and 1960s, liberals likewise argued that no logical argument could possibly be presented against welfare.

no, you didn't pay attention -- liberals back then were arguing that another tradition, segregation, had to go. and luckily it did go.
and before you get all excited about welfare, it's the white Red State folk who seem to have a taste for gubmint help, more than the urban, melanin-rich peoples you are politely alluding to.
posted by matteo at 1:12 PM on July 31, 2005


and that those who disagree fear me.
It's a compliment.


no, again. personally, I think you're funny. and an asset for MeFi -- unfiltered right wing thought, in all its pettiness and all its hatred for minorities.

on Planet Shouting women and gays are the oppressors, white straight men are oppressed, blacks are lazy and fuck way too often, and it's fun to piss in women's coffee and watch them drink it. here on earth, we're not afraid of you, we mostly feel pity.
posted by matteo at 1:19 PM on July 31, 2005


Ha! Project much?
posted by TetrisKid at 1:41 PM on July 31, 2005


that means that my arguments are convincing and powerful

Funniest. Shit. Ever. Who is this pathetic clown ?


Shouting out loud.
posted by realcountrymusic at 1:46 PM on July 31, 2005


TetrisKid : "Ha! Project much?"

Why, yes, as a ventriloquist, my very livelihood consists of it. Why do you ask?
posted by Bugbread at 1:51 PM on July 31, 2005


Jesus. Back to Meta
posted by nanojath at 2:04 PM on July 31, 2005


I dunno, I would've. Both sides have too much invested ideologically to trust either side's experts.

well, if you had to choose whether to believe one side that was basically making up their own facts, and another side that arrived at their conclusions following vigorous scientific inquiry, which would you go with?
posted by mcsweetie at 2:07 PM on July 31, 2005


Ladies and Gentlemen, please do not feed the trolls.

As to the man who the article is about, how is he any different than the climate scientists sponsored by ExxonMobilBPChevonTexaco?
posted by Hactar at 2:15 PM on July 31, 2005


i don't think those oil co. scientists pull all their "statistics" out of one issue of a gay newspaper's obituary page, for one.
posted by amberglow at 2:27 PM on July 31, 2005


Actually, to some extent, I agree with Shouting's proposition that scientific studies on same-sex parenting don't matter (though I'd strongly disagree with the second half of his statement, that it's religion that matters). The fact that the religious right has appropriated scientific terminology and created pseudo-scientific journals and articles and mouthpieces does matter, as it's dishonest, but there's another point to be made here.

Let's say that all of the nay-sayers are correct, and outcomes for children of same-sex couples are demonstrably worse than those in families with both a mom and a dad. It still doesn't matter.

You see, I'd be willing to bet that on average outcomes are also worse for children whose parents are African-American, even after controlling for economics. A long history of discrimination cannot be erased so quickly, and African-American children still face barriers of perception even if they've been given every available advantage by caring parents.

But we don't judge the abilities of African-American parents as a class as a matter of policy. The only reason the state intervenes is if there's an accusation of abuse or neglect by a specific individual - and that's true no matter the race or gender of the people involved. (Certainly, there may be bias in the way the state responds to such allegations, but still the state is responding on the level of the individual, not giving and taking away parental rights on the level of the whole demographic group).

Gay and lesbian parents deserve to be judged on precisely the same basis. Even if it is true that overall the outcomes are worse - and I have no reason to believe that they actually are - the fact that the outcomes could be worse for a group of parents does not automatically condemn specific individual parents. Gay and lesbian parents, then, should be judged by their individual fitness as parents, the same as any other parent, and not by their membership in a particular demographic group.
posted by Chanther at 2:30 PM on July 31, 2005


But that's just the point...many mothers have lost custody of their kids specifically because they were members of a group--lesbians. And many people are looking to ensure that that remains the case, and so continually trot out these false "statistics" from this thoroughly discredited guy. Even now, in Florida a gay couple is going to lose their foster kid--they did too good a job in ensuring his survival when he wasn't expected to.

And we have a straight parent killing his toddler because he thought he was too gay.
posted by amberglow at 2:38 PM on July 31, 2005


I honestly cannot believe you all spent 80+ comments debating about a guy who pays 30 bucks a page to get his shit published. I recommend looking him up on pubmed.org, his papers read like junior high science experiments.

Do Gays have Cooties?
Are Gays the Devil?
Why do I long for Sweet Gay Loving?

I mean honestly, this guy's a fucking loon who wouldn't know how to put together a coherent study if his life depended on it. As Amberglow mentioned, most of his studies involve looking up articles on molestation in lexis-nexis. Yeah, really credible work he's doing there.


And Shouting,

You're adorable. You actually think a couple of Bachelor Degrees in the humanities and a master's in media give you the credibility to talk about science? How quaint. I won't get into a pissing contest here but seriously, you have no idea what you're talking about, as many above have pointed out.
posted by slapshot57 at 2:39 PM on July 31, 2005


Amberglow, I think you and I are saying the same thing - gay and lesbian parents shouldn't be judged as fit or unfit on the basis of the fact that they are gay or lesbian. For everyone else in the world, the government assumes you are fit unless there's a specific allegation otherwise; the same should be true for gay and lesbian parents. I think the point you're making is that that the specific allegation against many gay and lesbian parents is just that - that they are gay or lesbian. And I agree that's wrong.

What I was saying is that no study in the world about the average fitness of parents could be used as a basis for judging the fitness of any individual parent. And since scientific studies cannot tell us about the fitness of individual parents, they should have little bearing on policy.
posted by Chanther at 2:48 PM on July 31, 2005


Yep, slapshot. The vast majority of Cameron's work is published in Psychological Reports, which charges to publish. It's barely peer reviewed. Cameron's group has come under fire before for poor scientific methodology (again, can see that by searching pubmed).
posted by gaspode at 2:51 PM on July 31, 2005


mcsweetie : "if you had to choose whether to believe one side that was basically making up their own facts, and another side that arrived at their conclusions following vigorous scientific inquiry, which would you go with?"

Pretty hard question. In this case, I believe the folks on the left more than on the right, but that's more because of a natural tendency to trust folks you agree with than with folks you disagree with, not because of being intrinsically more trustable.

amberglow : "But that's just the point"

Amberglow, I strongly think you're using the word "but" incorrectly here.
posted by Bugbread at 3:02 PM on July 31, 2005


Great comment, Chanther. Best of the thread, so far... Feel free to make a little trophy out of aluminum foil and stick it on your mantel. (That's silly, but I'm serious about the compliment.)
posted by chasing at 3:36 PM on July 31, 2005


Wow, Shouting is insane he cant even stay on on train of thought. First he says "We are discussing human values and traditions. These are not rational issues."

then he says "First, the burden of proof, when basic changes to human traditions are proposed, falls entirely on those who propose that change... not vice versa."

Problem is if its not a rational issue, then you cannot argue someone needs a burden of proof. Proof is only useful in 'rational issues' to use the terms in use. If you are going on faith (belief without proof), or fantasy, or using the voices caused by mental illness as a basis, then proof is unnecessary.

Checkmate.
posted by MrLint at 3:51 PM on July 31, 2005


Pretty hard question. In this case, I believe the folks on the left more than on the right, but that's more because of a natural tendency to trust folks you agree with than with folks you disagree with, not because of being intrinsically more trustable.

but this isn't a left vs. right thing. it's a make-stuff-up vs. science thing.
posted by mcsweetie at 3:54 PM on July 31, 2005


mcsweetie : "but this isn't a left vs. right thing. it's a make-stuff-up vs. science thing."

Yeah, I misread that. Sorry. If given a choice between fake science and real science, I'd of course go with real science any day. But your question was in response to my comment that I would suspect both sides of using fake science.

Your example is a make-stuff-up vs. science thing. I'm just saying that I wouldn't take that on faith, and instead would be unsurprised if it turned out to be a make-stuff-up vs. opposing-make-stuff-up thing. Not that it is, but that I would not be surprised if it turned out that way.
posted by Bugbread at 4:16 PM on July 31, 2005


does anyone remember the rules of discourse?

I love mefi, but too often are worthwhile discussions hijacked--not by people espousing unpopular views, but by those who take it upon themselves to argue said opinionators ad nauseum. I can't quite decide the perfect word for it; i can't settle between asinine and inane. how about asinane?

To me, the greatest moment in civil human discourse occurs when people agree to disagree, and go on living.

The second greates moment in human discourse is when one remembers that the easiest way to end an argument is to not argue back .

sorrry for all the HTML, i just reminded myself how to do it.


oh, and who else thinks asinane is a great new word?
posted by markovitch at 5:20 PM on July 31, 2005


POO ... JUGGERNAUT

I flagged your post.

As Fantastic.
posted by delmoi at 5:28 PM on July 31, 2005


You see, I'd be willing to bet that on average outcomes are also worse for children whose parents are African-American, even after controlling for economics.

Ugh.

In any event, African American children are also, in fact, African American, so if the world is descrimintory, then they will also be descriminated against. The proper comparison would be white children rased by black parents. But that still misses the point, we're talking about parents harming (molesting, in fact) their children.

But whatever. Also everyone please stop feeding the troll.
posted by delmoi at 5:39 PM on July 31, 2005


The proper comparison would be white children rased by black parents.

I see your point here. I agree my analogy was flawed. A better analogy might be that outcomes for children of single mothers are (on average) lower than those of children from two-parent homes, and yet it's not the policy of the government to deny parenthood rights to single parents as a group. Parental rights are only denied based on specific accusations against specific individuals. The larger point, though, that group outcomes can't be used to determine the fitness of individual parents, is still valid, I think.

But that still misses the point, we're talking about parents harming (molesting, in fact) their children

I'm not following you here. Can you explain further?
posted by Chanther at 5:57 PM on July 31, 2005


Perrin, the Boston pediatrician, has watched these developments from a unique perspective. She was a lead author of the report by the American Academy of Pediatrics -- unanimously approved by its board of directors and its president and vice president -- that was supportive of same-sex parenting, and she has suggested repeatedly that articles by Cameron be rejected by medical journals.

Its a good thing Perrin is on the case. Superior intellect untainted by any motive. Why cant everyone be as pure and dedicated to science as she?
posted by bevets at 6:12 PM on July 31, 2005


Because it's very difficult to accept facts which don't fit in a pre-existing framework for understanding the world. It's easy to become emotionally attached to such world views, particularly if they don't require much intellectual work, play on our emotions, promise fantastic rewards for believing in them, and horrific punishments for not.

And then we have the oil industry shills.
posted by cytherea at 6:37 PM on July 31, 2005


Sometimes I think we as a society should simply abolish parenthood and the family, or at least stop treating them as if they wre sacred. For everybody, across the board. Then straights would have no family-based prerogatives or privilieges to deny to gays.

My stand on gay marriage might help: if the law allows cross-sex marriages then same-sex marriages must also be allowed. However I'm against the institution of marriage for anyone, and would rather demolish the conervative institution of straight marriage than establish another conservative institution.

To start with, hey, look around: most of the evil bastards we read about in history books (like Hitler and Stalin) were raised in two-parent hetero marriages, most abused children come from two-parent hetero marriages, etc. etc. The institution of straight marriage, while reinforcing property laws and religious prejudice, is neither automatic paradise for the kids they produce nor any guarantee that those kids won't turn out to be warped monsters. So yes, by all means, gay people should get their chance to produce victims and/or monsters too, if fairness is all that matters. We should all get a chance to contribute to the problem!

I'm sure most people would rather mock the idea and/or proclaim that it can't work for some "human nature" reason, but whatever; I'm not trying to start an argument, only to state my problems with the question as posed. "B is as good as A!" does not establish that A is worthwhile.

And by the way, I think American society could do with a lot more gay sex. If they're going to outsource all the productive jobs elsewhere we ought to lower the birth rate.
posted by davy at 8:16 PM on July 31, 2005


"You folks need to learn to cope with disagreement."

And you need to put together a relevant and rational argument. But you don't.

I've got a B.A. in English Literature and Drama. I also watch documentaries!

I've noticed a new form of performance art emerging Internet wide, but particularly here on MetaFilter. It involves a sustained performance wherein the "actor" plays a bloke or lass that more often than not, completely, entirely, and maybe even absolutely entirely (or completely) misses the premise of the post or discussion and then appears to willfully continue to do so, all the while casting rational and sensible questions as irrational and biased and liberally pointing an accusing finger all about while implying, of course, their own superiority. Most noticeable are series of statements that are presented without any evidence or argument behind them whatsoever, but the performer comically insists that there are and so, marvelously makes an ass of himself much to the amusement, bemusement, and astonishment of those who watch the performance.

The advantage of such a performance in a blog is that the audience gets to participate in it, and in some way, influence the play itself. The drama becomes a game and in so doing, both the performer and the audience conversely become either and/or both simultaneously. But like every ensemble, a lead gives the drama shape and coherence. You're the lead mate.

I clap and cheer, and would throw flowers on the stage if I could. You're a master performer. Sometimes, we need to be entertained. You're the top mate! Watch out for the former top performers, they always try their best to get stand tall again.
posted by juiceCake at 11:59 PM on July 31, 2005


Incidently, here (pdf) is the Stacey-Biblerz study noted in the Slate article above.

And, Chanther's comments are right on.
posted by bumpkin at 8:28 AM on August 1, 2005


I clap and cheer, and would throw flowers on the stage if I could. You're a master performer.

Or a master baiter.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:44 AM on August 1, 2005


This is the last time I'll bother with you, shouting, since you are clearly just trolling.

The best response to a troll is none at all.
posted by prak at 9:58 AM on August 1, 2005


Since this thread is already full of complete asides dealing mainly with shouting, I feel less badly about posing the following question:

I have a bachelor's degree is Russian history, literature, language and culture from the University of Illinois, as well as a bachelor's degree in English literature. I'm pretty well read in the classic literature. In addition, I have a B.A. in music.

Who gets three BAs? No, seriously, who are these people and why why oh why do they get multiple undergraduate degrees? Is that what you do when you can't get into graduate school? Master's degrees are way more fun, why waste time in the world of the undergrad so many times?

And as for Cameron: I blame the librarians for not banning the pay-per-page journals from the eyes of those in the White House. Good censorship starts at home.
posted by Hildegarde at 11:43 AM on August 1, 2005


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