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The Stream: Public opinion on same-sex “marriage” has shifted so quickly that major Democratic candidates for president in 2008 still had to pretend to believe in man-woman marriage (that is, “marriage”). It was only after Joe Biden gave the game away that President Obama officially endorsed same-sex marriage as soon as he did — in May 2012. By that time, a majority of Americans were just starting to tell pollsters they agreed. Now, a mere three years later, only the most stout-hearted public figures can make the man-woman marriage argument that Barack Obama was still making in April 2012.
The Stream: The beginnings of the transgender movement have gotten lost today in the push for transgender rights, acceptance, and tolerance. If more people were aware of the dark and troubled history of sex-reassignment surgery, perhaps we wouldn’t be so quick to push people toward it.
The Federalist: For years, a major aim of the sexual revolution has been to deconstruct gender differences as being “social constructs,” mere cultural projections of what maleness and femaleness are and mean. This critique evacuated gender of any physical meaning and reduced it to an existential feeling—a feeling of being male or female, regardless of one’s sexual biology.
Mere Orthodoxy: The torrents of passion the sexual revolution released are now receding, leaving behind the ruins and rubble of broken lives and homes. We once thought we might have all the feelings of love without any of the boundaries; but by trying to set eros free, we instead shattered it.
Public Discourse: Because it reduces the human person into a mere vehicle for abstract rights, liberalism has no language to express the transcendence and sacrifice of human sexuality.
Slate: The exposure of one of the biggest scientific frauds in recent memory didn’t start with concerns about normally distributed data, or the test-retest reliability of feelings thermometers, or anonymous Stata output on shady message boards, or any of the other statistically complex details that would make it such a bizarre and explosive scandal. Rather, it started in the most unremarkable way possible: with a graduate student trying to figure out a money issue.
USA Today: It’s June — the time of year when we’re supposed to hear wedding bells. You know the drill: The invitations start pouring in and you find yourself scrambling to order gifts from registries and block off summer weekends to attend ceremonies and parties.
The New York Times: ON every issue save abortion, social liberalism is suddenly ascendant in America. The shift on same-sex marriage has captured the headlines, but the change is much more comprehensive: In just 15 years, we have gone from being a society divided roughly evenly between progressive and traditionalist visions to a country where social conservatism is countercultural and clearly in retreat.
The Daily Signal: Yesterday, the North Carolina House passed a bill that would protect magistrates who object to performing solemnizing ceremonies for same-sex marriages and clerks who object to issuing same-sex marriage licenses.
Juicy Ecumenism: When the LGBT agenda infects church authorities something has to give: the Gospel or sexual libertarianism. In the case of Dr. Giles Fraser, the priest-in-charge of South London’s St. Mary’s Newington and former canon chancellor of St. Paul’s Cathedral, the gospel gave.
The Gospel Coalition: Since the early 2000s, Gallup has tracked Americans’ views of the moral acceptability of various issues and behaviors. The overall trend clearly points toward a higher level of acceptance of a number of behaviors that the Bible clearly condemns. In fact, notes Gallup, the moral acceptability ratings for 10 of the issues measured since the early 2000s are at record highs.
HuffPost: Science magazine officially retracted a major study on same-sex marriage and public opinion on Thursday without the consent of the lead author, UCLA graduate student Michael J. LaCour.
Public Discourse: Citing tenuous social science that should not (and probably does not) change anyone’s mind merely obscures what people are actually divided over—namely, the purpose of marriage as a social institution.
WRAL: Within hours of the House giving final approval to a bill that would allow magistrates and other public officials to refuse to perform marriages for religious reasons, Gov. Pat McCrory vetoed the measure.
Canon and Culture: “You’ll be on the wrong side of history” is practically anthemic to the same-sex marriage crusade. As a political device, it’s a fairly effective line, for two reasons. One, it appeals to most everyone’s basest desire to be thought well of, especially by strangers; and two, because it doesn’t actually advance any sort of moral or philosophical argument whatsoever, it’s almost impossible to shoot down.
Breakpoint: As we wait for the Supreme Court to decide whether there’s a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, I’d like to take a moment to go over what’s at stake.
ERLC: Any ideology that exalts one gender to the exclusion of the other is not honoring to God’s created design—namely that we bear his image (Gen. 1:26-27). Our humanity matters, and our maleness and femaleness matters. If men go the way of the Dodo Bird then we lose something precious about the image of God. And I don’t want to live in a world where that happens for men or women.
Albert Mohler: The Boy Scouts were doomed the moment the national leadership decided to preserve the organization at the cost of the values and ideals that gave it birth. Speaking to a national meeting of Boy Scouts of America leaders, President Robert Gates, former Secretary of Defense and former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, called for the B.S.A. to abandon its policy of allowing the participation of openly gay scouts, but not the involvement of openly-gay adults.
First Things: Of course I have been talking, in the first story, about the beleaguered but unbowed Mark Regnerus, the sociologist whose New Family Structures Study was published in Social Science Research in 2012. (Full disclosure: Regnerus’s NFSS was funded in principal part, but uninfluenced by, the Witherspoon Institute where I work.) And the second story, which broke this week, is about UCLA political science doctoral student Michael LaCour, whose co-author, Donald Green of Columbia, has asked for the journal Science to retract their much-ballyhooed December 2014 article.
Illinois Family Institute: Columbia University Political Science Professor Donald P. Green decided to retract the study published in the December 2014 issue of the journal Science after discovering his co-author, UCLA graduate student Michael LaCour, used fake data to support his claim.
The New York Times: Last week, their finding that gay canvassers were in fact powerfully persuasive with people who had voted against same-sex marriage — published in December in Science, one of the world’s leading scientific journals — collapsed amid accusations that Mr. LaCour had misrepresented his study methods and lacked the evidence to back up his findings.
I had a transgender parent. Unlike Obama, I don’t think transgender parents should be able to adopt.
The Daily Signal: The proclamation relates Obama’s latest thoughts on what’s best for LBGT adults. But what’s best for children? It is stunning that we hear no personal accounts from adults who grew up in transgender homes like this, and that so little research is made public about this.
Public Discourse: I’m attracted to people of the same sex, and I’m glad that I was raised by a devoutly Christian mom and dad. My dad’s acceptance of me as a man, with full knowledge of my attraction to other men, was his gift to me. And though it was late coming, I am utterly thankful for it.
The Stream: For many of us, National Review is indispensable daily reading. It hosts many of conservatism’s most gifted writers. Indeed, The Stream is proud to publish columns by such NR stalwarts as Jonah Goldberg, Rich Lowry and Kathryn Lopez. This is why the publication of a long essay defending same-sex marriage by National Review’s managing editor Jason Lee Steorts is so distressing.
The Gospel Coalition: Speaking to volunteers at the 2015 National Annual Meeting, Boy Scouts of America National President Dr. Robert M. Gates warned that the organizations ban on homosexual Scout leaders is “unsustainable” and should be modified.
Religion News Service: Evangelist Franklin Graham has taken to Facebook to plead for prayers on behalf of each U.S. Supreme Court justices as they prepare to rule on gay marriage.
The Federalist: A scene stands out to me from my graduate program in social work. A lesbian professor visited our class to tell about her experience of being same-sex attracted in a small, Midwestern, devoutly Protestant town in the latter twentieth century. As expected, her story was heart-rending.
The New York Times: The president of the Boy Scouts of America on Thursday called for an end to the group’s blanket ban on gay adult leaders, warning Scout executives that “we must deal with the world as it is, not as we might wish it to be,” and that “any other alternative will be the end of us as a national movement.”
Denny Burk: The National Review is a leading journal of conservative opinion. It should not be lost on us that many conservatives are eager to shed the albatross of traditional marriage. They view it as a political loser. Younger conservatives can hardly comprehend any reason to oppose gay marriage. At this point, the Republican party is divided on the issue with traditional social conservatives being the only ones holding the line. Those social conservatives have always been viewed as a key part of the Republican coalition. For the time being, they still are. But how long will that last? That a leading journal of conservative opinion would publish an article like this tells us something about the future of political conservatism in America.
WND: In a state where the law already deprives minors of counseling for unwanted sexual attractions, a trial is scheduled to get under way in a case that could be a bellwether for what is often called “conversion therapy.”
The Washington Post: Gallup announced historic results of two polls within a day of each other this week, one for support for same-sex marriage, the other for belief that people who are gay or lesbian were born that way.
Religion Clause: After a committee of the Louisiana House of Representatives effectively killed the proposed Marriage and Conscience Act yesterday (New Orleans Times Picayune), Governor Bobby Jindahl issued Executive Order BJ 15-8 (May 19, 2015) designed to accomplish the same thing. Its key provision prohibits government departments, commissions, boards, agencies and local governments from denying various benefits because a person acts in accordance with his religious belief that marriage should be only between one man and one woman.
NOM Blog: Last year, the media was awash in stories reporting what was considered a major study that “proved” that once people had a conversation at their home with a same-sex canvasser, their minds were changed on whether same-sex ‘marriage’ should be accepted.
The Washington Times: Supporters of such therapy counter that it has helped many people successfully reduce or eliminate their unwanted same-sex attractions, and it’s wrong to trample people’s rights to seek the counseling of their choice.
Family Studies: My dad was just 61 when he died. I never had the deep and meaningful relationship with him that I craved. From the day he divorced my mother when I was aged three, I probably saw him a couple of times a year. On those occasions, we got along extremely well and I enjoyed his company very much. But there was so much missing from what could and should have been a powerful bonding relationship between father and son. It’s an absence that has affected me profoundly and still does.
CBN: In an exclusive one-on-one interview with The Brody File, Jeb Bush says there is not a constitutional right to same-sex marriage. The Supreme Court will be deciding that issue next month. Watch him talk about the issue below.
New Jersey: A longtime Wawa employee is suing the convenience store chain in federal court, claiming she was harassed and eventually fired from her corporate office job after working to create a Gay-Straight Alliance group at the company in 2012.
The Legal Intelligencer: Federal regulations requiring producers of pornographic material to keep records of their models’ ages don’t violate the First Amendment, but the warrantless searches they authorize do violate the Fourth Amendment, the Third Circuit has ruled.
The New York Times: Former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida hardened his position against same-sex marriage in an interview that aired on Sunday, making clear he did not believe in constitutional protection for gay marriages — an issue now before the United States Supreme Court — and leaving out his past call for “respect” for gay couples.
The New York Times: No one was sure if she was emphasizing her own beliefs or giving a hint to the outcome of the case the Supreme Court is considering whether to decide if same-sex marriage is constitutional.
National Review: In our entire legal history, no one bothered to legislate a restriction of marriage to sexually complementary couples until the day before yesterday because everyone understood what “marriage” meant and would (if asked) have thought it naturally impossible for two men or two women to marry.
The Washington Post: Millennials are poised to become the nation’s largest living generation this year. As they grow as a percentage of the population, more of them will reach the age at which Americans historically have gotten married. And many baby-boomer parents are probably eagerly anticipating the big day when their son or daughter walks down the aisle (and the grandkids that will follow.)
Public Discourse: Mothers and fathers are not interchangeable—they both add distinct benefits to the development of children. Courts and legislatures can change legal definitions, but they cannot alter biology or psychology.
Fox News: One of the nation’s largest public school systems is preparing to include gender identity to its classroom curriculum, including lessons on gender fluidity – the idea that there’s no such thing as boys or girls.
The Federalist: What is it that makes men and women see the world so differently, especially parenting and our roles as parents? Is it biological, cultural expectations, or some mix of the two? Because it’s clear that we don’t all live in the same head space where parenting is concerned.
The New York Times: The place where you grow up doesn’t affect only your future income, as we wrote about last week. It also affects your odds of marrying, a large new data set shows.
NBC News: Divorce can be a one-way ticket down the road to financial instability for many women, especially for those who are middle class or low-income.
Mayor signs ordinance to protect housing rights for LGBT Tulsans, cites support for state religious liberty law
Tulsa World: Mayor Dewey Bartlett signed an ordinance last week that would include gender identity in the city’s list of protected classes under the fair-housing policy.
Religion Clause: Religion News Service reported yesterday that as the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage nears, legislation has been introduced in several states to block the effect of a ruling in favor of marriage equality.
First Things: Recent arguments at the Supreme Court revealed deep confusion about the nature of dignity. Arguing that “the marriage institution did not develop to deny dignity or to give second class status to anyone,” but rather “to serve purposes that, by their nature, arise from biology,” attorney James J. Bursch described the push to legalize same-sex marriage as the desire to “take an institution that was never intended to be dignity-bestowing, and make it dignity-bestowing.”
First Things: A few weeks ago, I assigned the article “What is Marriage?” to the students in my gender theory class, which I teach at an evangelical university.
Family Studies: Most times, men greeted the news of an unmarried pregnancy with a mixture of fright and excitement. Except in a few instances, men described the pregnancies as unplanned. They wanted to have kids someday, and becoming a father was something that many of them looked forward to. But they didn’t foresee it happening yet.
Family Studies: Are marriage’s days in America numbered? The answer to this question would seem to be “yes,” judging by the views expressed by some of the nation’s leading family scholars.
The Stream: Professor Lopez talked to The Stream about his new book, co-edited with Rivka Edelman, Jephthah’s Daughters: Innocent Casualties in the War for Family “Equality.”The previous three installments of our interview can be read here, here and here. You can read the fourth part here.
The Federalist: “One way philosophers might think about solving the social-justice problem would be by simply abolishing the family,” he continues, cheerfully. “If the family is this source of unfairness in society, then it looks plausible to think that if we were to abolish the family, we would create a more level playing field.”
Religion News Service: The U.S. Supreme Court is now weighing arguments in the same-sex marriage case it heard on April 28 that could lead to a landmark decision requiring all states to acknowledge the unions.
Ethika Politika: First, even if some transgenderism is caused by physiological anomalies, that does not mean that even that form of transgenderism is not also a psychological disorder or mental illness—albeit caused by physiological anomalies rather than by distorting life experiences, for instance.
USA Today: Justice Alito posed a predictable, but revealing question to Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, Jr., in the recent Supreme Court same-sex marriage oral argument: “In the Bob Jones case, the court held that a college was not entitled to tax exempt status if it opposed interracial marriage or interracial dating. So would the same apply to a university or a college if it opposed same-sex marriage?”
The Christian Post: Oregon is expected to join California, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia in enacting a ban on sexual orientation change efforts therapy for gay minors.
Michael C Sherrard: I don’t know how a society that wants to put the emotional fulfillment of adults ahead of the well being of its children can survive. And that is what troubles me most about Same-Sex Marriage; children are the afterthought.
The Christian Post: I really appreciate Pastor Andy Stanley’s call last month for Christians in America to live like real Christians, and I absolutely agree with him that if we do, in just one year’s time the nation would be positively affected.
The Atlantic: I swore I’d never write publicly about this issue. It always felt too personal. Better to avoid it and focus on what my sister and I have in common.
Campus Reform: Stony Brook University’s Graduate Queer Alliance (GQA) is demanding the school apologize for hosting a conservative Christian during a recent debate, citing the importance of debate and open dialogue.
Nathan Cherry: The Supreme Court is the highest court in the United States. Once they make a decision it is binding on all 50 states and there is little (if any) recourse for anyone opposed to the ruling. For this reason the pending decision regarding marriage is more than important, it is potentially historic.