March 1, 2013
Four Tiers of Failure: How the LGBT Lobby DominatesBy Robert Oscar Lopez
I never knew the extent of a lobby's power until fate called me to speak on behalf of children's rights. Now, six months after having come forward with a logical, secular argument against same-sex parenting based on experience, broad research, and international law, I have been met with vicious attacks and something far worse than viciousness: a massive nationwide cold shoulder. Both left and right are allied in a complete blackout of dissent from LGBT orthodoxy.
Doug Mainwaring is a gay father in Maryland; he and I jointly signed an amicus brief in support of Proposition 8. Over the last six weeks, fifteen news organizations have rejected our editorials and refused to interview us; many, like Salon and the New Republic, gave major coverage to the pro-gay marriage side at the same time that they rejected our correspondence. Some of these publications are conservative, though I will strive not to burn bridges by naming them here.
I am, moreover, the only person reared by a same-sex couple who signed an amicus brief in support of Proposition 8. Nonetheless, the Washington Post feels that it is newsworthy to report on two gay men holding a bake sale to raise money to pay a surrogate mother, while deeming the riposte from Mainwaring and me utterly insignificant.
Mainwaring and I support civil unions. We do not oppose homosexuality or object to gays living together. We support traditional marriage for the simple reason that a child's right to a father and mother is a fundamental consideration recognized by international law. Why has every paper from the New York Times to the Chicago Tribune pretended that our position simply doesn't exist?
There are four levels that have failed in the United States, and we must take these four tiers very seriously. It is time for a quick postmortem of what went wrong with the traditional marriage movement, so we can do better for the next round of battles, and perhaps win the war in a few decades.
Since it appears quite unlikely that traditional marriage will survive the next year, activists like Mainwaring and me, who worry about children's rights, will have to shift gears and strategize ways of saving more children from being deprived of fathers or mothers in the future.
Tier 1: The Academy Failed to Inform Us on Same-Sex Parenting
Everything starts with the universities. K-12 teachers are educated at universities, and it is among university faculty that ideological homogeneity has reached crisis levels.
Traditionalists have to start investing in journals, endowed chairs, and even their own colleges. There are large pools of unemployed Ph.D.s who want jobs. Look for the unemployed ones who support a traditionalist worldview, and employ them.
For twenty years -- in fact, up until the articles published by Loren Marks and Mark Regnerus in 2012 -- research into same-sex families was conducted under duress. A central principle of research is that studies cannot be trusted if it is clear that certain findings would result in reprisals against the researchers. After Social Science Research posted the Marks and Regnerus articles, a witch-hunt ensued by crackpot bloggers who managed to open an investigation at the University of Texas at Austin and force the publication of hundreds of pages of my e-mails (I defended Regnerus in Public Discourse).
What Marks and Regnerus found was not necessarily as significant as what the fallout revealed. We know now that all the studies conducted prior to 2012 were carried out by researchers who knew that if they found non-LGBT-affirming data, they would face professional ostracism and possibly lose their livelihood. The whole bank of scholarship we have is hence tainted and worthless.
So it is time to start from scratch -- and here advocates for children's rights must get into the game. Get behind researchers, bankroll legitimate scholarship, defend existing professors against witch-hunts, and recruit new faculty with new ideas.
Tier 2: The Fourth Estate Failed to Report on Same-Sex Parenting
Few readers of American Thinker would dispute that the press has failed to report honestly on same-sex parenting. While Mark Regnerus found copious evidence that children raised by gay parents contend with unique difficulties, for years, publications like the Los Angeles Times churned out puff pieces about lesbian moms and gay dads. What authors of such articles never asked is more crucial than what they did ask. They asked, "Don't these kids look happy?" rather than, "Where is the father? Where is the mother? Did you divorce someone to get this kid? Does your kid like knowing that his dad is a sperm donor? Does you kid like knowing that her mom rented her womb in a foreign country so you could have her?"
Some of the press's failure to report on same-sex parenting can be blamed on the academy, which was pumping out bogus research and therefore gave them no legitimate scholarship on the topic. But a mix of intellectual laziness and inflated ideological self-importance has led to attitudes like this one, expressed by a Washington Post writer: "Of course I have a bias. I have a bias toward fairness."
Reporters on both left and right are comfortable farming out their jobs to a vague court of consensus. If their colleagues all seem to be quoting people who say the same thing, then that must be the only thing worth reporting. People who say anything else are crazy and not newsworthy. The emperor has no clothes.
We must be indefatigable using social media. We have to cherish the few news outlets we have outside the mainstream, defend them, write our best for them, go to bat for them when they come under fire. And we cannot wait several years for the problem to get worse. We have to be proactive and build momentum for an alternative press now.
Tier 3: The Two-Party System Has Built a Bridge on the Backs of Children
Over eighty Republicans signed an amicus brief supporting gay marriage. Children are lost in the two-party system, because they cannot vote and have no money of their own. They are natural prisoners of their parents' agendas. The gay people who have enough money to buy children are the gay people both parties want. The Democrats want them to agree to pay higher taxes on their income to support social spending. The Republicans want them to sway their corporate connections and friends in high places to the capitalist policies they think represent the party's only chance against Democratic hegemony.
In a time of (supposed) partisan rancor between left and right, gay parenting is the perfect grounds for a two-party truce. Democrats keep the wealthiest of their donors happy, and Republicans get to shed one of their most troublesome stigmas (homophobes!). The people who lose out on this truce are children, who will be silenced by their same-sex parents and made to feel guilty if they resent their loss of a mother or father. By the time they are adults, anyway, their only choice will be between the two parties who united to deprive them. It's a match made in heaven.
Same-sex couples of high economic class are a tiny fraction of the country, but on the gay parenting issue they have come to wield incredible power over the two-party political class. The only way to counteract this is, I believe, to withdraw from the two-party divide when it comes to children's rights. When I was in Minnesota speaking out on children's rights, I met with Democrats and sought to persuade them based on their commitment to social justice. I met with Republicans and sought to persuade them based on their traditional values.
The only way out of the two-party stalemate is to get out of the two-party system altogether. When it comes to children, we must be non-partisan or bipartisan -- anything but lockstep "Republicans." The Republicans are ready to sell kids downriver. Let's face it.
Tier #4: The Courts Have Nowhere to Go
The judicial system will be given the Herculean task of cleaning up the mess created by same-sex marriage. Family court, divorce court, surrogate court -- you name it. Whether it is the Florida court who issued a birth certificate with three parents listed, or the Kansas Supreme Court ruling that a biological mother had to cede partial custody to her lesbian ex-partner who wasn't even related to the child, we are seeing the courts dragged into more and more imbroglios because of the unsoundness of same-sex parenting schemes. Whereas you can conceive a child with a spouse of the opposite sex and then raise the child without much judicial interference, if you want exclusive custody of a child with a same-sex spouse, you will have to rely upon lawyers, judges, social workers, and deputies to enforce contractual rights.
The courts cannot be entirely blamed. Academia offers a dearth of qualified expert witnesses. The press has filled LGBT minds with unrealistic hopes for parenthood. Democrats and Republicans have joined forces to pass destructive laws in the hope of "keeping government out of the bedrooms" of LGBT couples. The end result is, tragically, that the courts will be in their kitchens, living rooms, and kids' heads, forced to juggle competing claims from exiled biological parents, sperm donors, surrogate mothers, and of course, the children, the children, the children -- the ones lost in the whole unseemly fiasco.
My sense is that future efforts cannot focus on courts or lawyers. By the time we're arguing in front of judges, it is too late. Our due diligence must happen at Tiers 1-3, and we have to start a countermovement now, to stop the hemorrhaging and help as many kids as we can live life with a mom and a dad.
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