Tag Archives: gay marriage

Adoptive Children of Lesbian and Gay Couples Developing Well

Newswise — Should the sexual orientation of prospective adoptive parents be considered when placing children in adoptive homes?
According to the results of a new University of Virginia study, the answer may be “no.”
In a sample of 106 adoptive children living in different parts of the United States, youngsters were developing well regardless of whether they were living with lesbian, gay or heterosexual parenting couples. The study found that whether or not adoptive children were developing in positive ways was unrelated to the sexual orientation of their adoptive parents.
The finding appears in the August issue of the journal Applied Developmental Science.
“We found that children adopted by lesbian and gay couples are thriving,” said U.Va. psychology professor Charlotte J. Patterson, who led the study. “Our results provide no justification for denying lesbian or gay prospective adoptive parents the opportunity to adopt children. With thousands of children in need of permanent homes in the United States alone, our findings suggest that outreach to lesbian and gay prospective adoptive parents might benefit children who are in need.”
The research assessed adjustment and development among preschool-aged children adopted at birth by lesbian, gay or heterosexual couples. Using standardized assessment procedures, researchers found that parents and teachers agreed, on average, that the children were developing in typical ways. Measures of children’s adjustment, as well as parenting practices and stress, were found to be unassociated with the parents’ sexual orientation. And, regardless of their parents’ sexual orientation, how well children were adjusted was significantly associated with how warmly their parents were oriented to them.
Adoption of minor children by same-sex couples has been a controversial topic. Same-sex couples are prohibited by law from adopting children in Florida, Mississippi and Utah. Voters in Arkansas passed a ban on adoptions by same- and opposite-sex unmarried couples in 2008, only to have it overturned by the courts. That case is currently on appeal.
In the last few years, legislatures in a number of other states have also debated proposals to prohibit adoptions by same-sex couples. On the other hand, joint adoptions by same-sex couples are permitted in many states, including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Vermont.
The study was authored by Patterson, who also is a faculty member and research scientist at the Fenway Institute’s Center for Population Research in LGBT Health in Boston; Rachel H. Farr, a U.Va. doctoral candidate; and Stephen L. Forssell, a faculty member in psychology at George Washington University. It was funded by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law.

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Marriage Monday: Weddings in Washington

Monday, March 22, 2010 By Erin Pelletier
Photo Illustration by Brandon Weight
On March 3, same-sex couples gained the right to marry in Washington, DC. Washington is now the sixth place in the United States where same-sex couples can marry, joining Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. The new right came after months of Congressional and local opposition, and gay rights advocates are calling for a broader, more expansive change.

The new marriage law gives same-sex couples numerous rights, including the right to visit each other in the hospital, file taxes as a couple and be seen as a married couple by health insurance companies. Mayor Adrian Fenty signed the new rights into law in December, but because the District of Columbia is governed by Congress, the law had to undergo Congressional review. There were many Congressional attempts to block the legislation, including an attempt to have the Supreme Court delay it. Chief Justice John Roberts rejected this request.

“From a legal point of view, I think it is great,” said Senior Kiersten Kampshroeder. “Now it’s definitely how it should be.”

Many activists within the gay community and others who support gay rights say that the new law is a sign that all American states and territories should legalize same-sex marriage. They argue that if something is legal in the United States capital, it ought to be legal everywhere.

Read the rest at My Highschool Journalism

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What is the Defence of Marriage Act?

Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, is the short title of a federal law of the United States passed on September 21, 1996 as Public Law No. 104-199, 110 Stat. 2419. Its provisions are codified at 1 U.S.C. § 7 and 28 U.S.C. § 1738C. The law has two effects:

1. No state (or other political subdivision within the United States) needs to treat a relationship between persons of the same sex as a marriage, even if the relationship is considered a marriage in another state.
2. The federal government defines marriage as a legal union exclusively between one man and one woman.

The bill was passed by Congress by a vote of 85-14 in the Senate[1] and a vote of 342-67 in the House of Representatives,[2] and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on September 21, 1996.

At the time of passage, it was expected that Hawaii (and possibly other states) would soon legalize same-sex marriage, whether by legislation or judicial interpretation of either the state or federal constitution. Opponents of such recognition feared (and many proponents hoped) that the other states would then be required to recognize such marriages under the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution.

Four states (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, and Vermont) currently allow same-sex marriage (with Maine and New Hampshire having passed not-yet-implemented legislation to join that list), five states recognize some alternative form of same-sex union, twelve states ban any recognition of any form of same-sex unions including civil union, twenty-eight states have adopted amendments to their state constitution prohibiting same-sex marriage, and another twenty states have enacted state-level statutes to the same effect.

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ASK AMANDA Gay Marriage

35-gold-wedding-ringsDear NSNMF,

The subject of gay marriage is one near and dear to Amanda’s heart and should be a vital concern for all of us in the community.

Amanda believes (strongly) that we need the right to marry – NOT to “be just like straight people” but to have the loving and long lasting relationships we find ourselves in sanctioned and validated by society (not that Amanda believes society has been a good judge of what is right and wrong up to this point). And God forbid we have “marriage that is identical to theirs”. Marriages in the straight community fail at a rate higher than 50% and then they blame us for demise of marriage and the family – STRAIGNT PEOPLE WAKE UP.

First of all lets get some definitions cleared up.

A wedding is a religious ceremony – actually a worship service within which two people become united into a couple. In the US we have unfortunately considered this a marriage and that has caused many to drag along a religious reason to object to gay couples tying the knot in a religious service. Amanda feels this is unfortunate. It is America and if the Baptist church doesn’t want to marry Amanda and her partner (If she had one – always looking – and please excuse the personal reference) then good for them – no one will make them do it. There are a number of denominations that will allow same gender ceremonies, the United Church of Christ being one WAY out in front.

A marriage really is a legal contract between two people that is defined and sanctioned by the government and in this light should, by common sense, be a right of anyone living in that governmental unit who wants to take advantage of that right and therefore gain the rights AND responsibilities afforded others.

Now that Amanda has defined the process for you allow her to shed some light into your overly non-conformist little heart. Get over yourself!! People should and do have the right to live anyway they wish, in singles, groups, couples and they have the opportunity to call it anything they wish. People who do not believe in the concept of marriage – DONT DO IT. Much like the old abortion slogan – If you Don’t Believe in Abortion – Don’t Have One.

For those of us who would like to be in committed relationships and receive the benefits of said relationship AND fulfill the responsibilities of that relationship – we should have that right.

To answer your question – middle ground? on this subject? That may not exist. But Amanda is very VERY adamant about this – if people within our own community fight the right that so many of us desire we will never win the battle of equality. This has been evident in most of the human rights battles we have fought. We rarely come together as a community to fight for our rights – we have so many subgroups who dilute the battle with personal causes and specific agendas that we rarely win. Our opponents are united in one objective – deny us rights – thus – they most often win.

The gay community needs to come together to fight for rights – the same rights everyone else has. Amanda has the right to own a cat – She doesn’t (thank God) but She believe you do have that right and would fight for it – right next to you, if that were necessary.

Get on board this fight – and if you don’t believe in it working in your life – don’t participate in the right when it is achieved – but PLEASAE do not help the other side by standing with them.

Kiss, Kiss (in spite of Her Feelings)

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POLITICS Law Professor Argues for Role of Government in Marriage

Newswise — Recent legal and legislative decisions about gay marriage in many states–including Iowa and California–have brought suggestions from some commentators that government should get out of the marriage business entirely, grant civil unions to all couples and leave marriage to religious faiths. Continue reading POLITICS Law Professor Argues for Role of Government in Marriage

Gay Couples View Marriage as Legal Protection, Not Commitment Symbol

Challenging the idea that marriage is necessary for solidifying relationships, a new study from The University of Texas at Austin reveals same-sex couples in long-term relationships believe marriage is more important in terms of legal rights, but less so as a symbol of commitment. Continue reading Gay Couples View Marriage as Legal Protection, Not Commitment Symbol

California Same-Sex Marriage – Expert Sources

Newswise — Rockway Institute, a national center for LGBT research and public policy, has a wide range of experts available on a variety of LGBT topics. On marriage and relationships, especially the effects of legal status on same-sex relationships, we can offer the following highly knowledgeable sources: Continue reading California Same-Sex Marriage – Expert Sources

Come Out Come Out

Lots of closet doors are opening like never before — and in places where most gay folks five years ago were too wary of government census takers to acknowledge being in a same-sex relationship. “The closet door is really opening. That’s especially true in the Midwest,” says Gary Gates, author of a fascinating study based on the newly released 2005 American Community Survey — a sort of mini-Census — and the National Survey of Family Growth, both conducted by the federal government. Overall, the number of same-sex couples identifying themselves to the government soared 30 percent in five short years — to 776,943. To put that in perspective, the U.S. population grew 6 percent in that period. The biggest jumps in self-reporting by gay couples were largely in America’s heartland. The survey results suggest that anti-gay marriage drives are having a wonderful unintended consequence: They’re emboldening more of us to stand up and be counted. Six of the eight states with an anti-gay marriage initiative on this year’s ballot — Arizona, Colorado, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin — saw rate jumps higher than the 30 percent national average.

Continue reading Come Out Come Out