English 2000 18 March 2013 Is Same-Sex Parenting just as Effective as Conventional Parenting? Marriage equality is currently one of the latest civil rights issues; along with marriage equality, same-sex parenting is a controversial topic that has yet to die down. There are usually two views taken on the topic of gay parenting: it’s wrong and should be illegal or it’s normal and should be legal. Gay parenting and marriage has become publicly accepted by some and prohibited by others and the average family has developed into many different forms in the last few years.
The majority of society believes that child being raised by a single parent is equivalent to same-sex parents. Studies show that children with two moms or two dads grow up just as well as children with heterosexual parents. Opponents of same-sex parenting believe that just as marriage should remain traditional, parenting should also be specifically between a man and a woman, while proponents believe that DNA does not make a parent. The main issue that needs to be resolved today is if same-sex parenting is just as effective as conventional parenting throughout families.
Both sides of the debate have their reasons for their beliefs that need to be explored. An argument of opponents is that same-sex relationships are infamously short-lived and will create an unstable family. By allowing same-sex couples to become parents we are ignoring what is best for children; growing up with a mother and a father. There have been many different studies conducted to get the true background of children being raised by gay parents. Mark Regnerus, Associate Professor of sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, conducted a study on young adults raised within different family arrangements.
While sexual orientation or parent sexual behavior has nothing to do with the ability to be an effective parent, his data suggests that it may affect a child’s life experiences. His study reveals that “children appear most apt to succeed well as adults—on multiple counts and across a variety of domains—when they spend their entire childhood with their married mother and father, and especially when the parents remain married to the present day” (Regnerus). There are a great number of people who believe that much of the research on same-sex parenting is flawed. This stakeholder usually has a neutral stance on the issue. Judges and lawmakers have relied on a growing body of research on same-sex parenting to make decisions in cases and legislation regarding custody battles and adoption” (Homosexual Parenting). In today’s society, one must need scientific data and research on an issue to decide how it should properly be resolved. Many researchers are aware of this concept and the data usually leads to coincide with the researchers beliefs. Rabbi Daniel Lapin, the President of the conservative public advocacy group Toward Tradition, states that “flawed science is not new, right now it’s swirling around the controversial area of sexuality” (qtd.
In Homosexual Parenting). Those who support that gay parenting studies are flawed believe that same-sex parenting is an issue that is based on beliefs, not scientific research. The majority of opposing views are influenced by religious motives. According to the Laws of Nature and Nature’s God, marriage exists for three purposes: companionship, sexual intimacy, and procreation (Fischer). Marriage is viewed as a religious ritual and is established for the purpose of procreation and since same-sex couples cannot conceive children, they should neither get married nor become parents.
Those who disagree with same-sex parenting/same-sex marriage tend to be against homosexuality. There is fear in conservative society that being raised by homosexual parents not gives children the fair chance to live a heterosexual life. Bryan Fischer, a conservative radio host and the Director of issues Analysis for the American Family Association, same-sex parenting and adoption are a form of child abuse. In his article, he includes many scientific researches, including sociologist Mark Regenerus, which confirms same-sex relationships are unstable for children.
He believes that while single parent families are an “unfortunate social tragedy” adopting children into same-sex environments is inexcusably and deliberately creating households with a missing mother or father (Fischer). Professionals trust that fathers contribute necessary ingredients to parenting that mothers cannot provide, and mothers contribute something to the nurture of children that fathers cannot provide (Fischer). The main reason people support same-sex parenting is because they support same-sex marriage.
Supporters believe that homosexuals desire an equal chance versus heterosexuals at civil rights. The documentary Fatherhood Dreams follows four gay men who are fathers and shows the incentive that drives gay men to become dads. Julia Ivanoa, the Russian director, depicts the untraditional families as better alternatives than divorce and neglect towards children’s growing experience. Same-sex couples create more opportunities for other families who cannot support their children to find a better home with devoted parents.
Convetional parenting, the “mom and dad” traditional way of parenting, is at an all-time low. Divorce and non-marital birth rates increase drastically every year. The quality of a marriage is proven to be a key factor in a child’s well-being. While research clearly indicates that children benefit from growing up with both biological parents in a low-conflict marriage, there has been very little rigorous research on how to promote and sustain healthy marriages. (Moore, Jekielek, and Emig). There are many sides to the same-sex parenting controversy, and all arguments give reasons to justify their beliefs.
Opponents of gay parenting support traditional family arrangements between a man and a woman. Not only do they believe the importance of religion is in dang they also fear that allowing children to be raised by same-sex couples will jeopardize their chances of having a stable life in the future. Those who support gay parenting believe that homosexuals desire the right to marry and raise children freely. Everyone has their own different views regarding this issue and is subject to change; however, homosexuals are not going to stop being parents.
This raises the question; are we going to continue to fight same-sex parenting? Works Citied “Homosexual Parenting Studies Are Flawed, Report Says | Fox News. ” Fox News. FOX News Network, 18 July 2001. Web. 28 Feb. 2013. Fatherhood Dreams. Dir. Julia Ivanoa. Interfilm Productions, 2007. Film. Fischer, Bryan. “Bryan Fischer: Same-sex Parenting Is Bad for Kids, Period. ” Bryan Fischer: Same-sex Parenting Is Bad for Kids, Period. American Family Association, 14 June 2012. Web. 28 Feb. 2013. Moore, Kristin, Anderson, Susan M. Jekielek, and Carol Emig. Marriage from a Child’s Perspective: How Does Family Structure Affect Children, and What Can We Do about It? ” Child Trends. Child Trends, June 2008. Web. 28 Feb. 2013. Prager, Dennis. “Same-sex Marriage: Good for Gays, Bad for Children. ” WorldNet Daily. WND Commentary, 4 May 2004. Web. 24 Feb. 2013. Regnerus, Mark. “How Different Are The Adult Children Of Parents Who Have Same-Sex Relationships? Findings From The New Family Structures Study. ” Social Science Research 41. (n. d. ): 752-770. ScienceDirect. Web. 28 Feb. 2013.
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