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Gay Marriage is NOT Bad for Children

Gay Marriage is NOT Bad for Children

In light of the historic Supreme Court rulings this week, the overturning of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act and the rule against California’s Proposition 8, which effectively banned gay marriage throughout the state, many families have very good reason to celebrate. On paper, the SCOTUS rulings affirm that it is unconstitutional to withhold, or vary, the rights of another group in relationship to the right to marry. This means bazillions of same-sex couples, who are currently in relationship limbo or married but not yet receiving all the benefits they are due, will be entering the fray of the wedded in the near future (if their heart desires). This has been a long fought battle, and with federal legislation is still a bit elusive, it may be a few years before this issue becomes as easy as saying “I do” but all signs point towards enormous progress and, ultimately, justice.

But those who argued against marriage equality will likely remain steadfast against the inevitability of what is coming, and continue to provide rationalization as to why it just shouldn’t be so. Such rationalization includes everything from same-sex marriage being morally reprehensible to the idea that such unions lead down a path of crazy, aberrant behavior, like fighting for the right to marry one’s pet. But one issue that really became a rallying cry for opponents of same-sex marriage was the idea that such marriages would be bad for children. The concern voiced had to do with the idea that such marriages would deny children both a mother and father, as well as such unions would promote a “gay lifestyle” to the extent that it would make the children of such parents gay. It feels important to take a look at the SCOTUS ruling, as well as the reality of these families to dispel such allegations and allay the fears of many who live in opposition to such families.

Justice Kennedy argued that denying marriage to same-sex couples does far more damage to the children of these families than sanctioning marriage would, and he went on to say, in relationship to DOMA, that it “”humiliates tens of thousands of children now being raised by same-sex couples.” The American Sociological Association wrote in a briefing presented to the high court, “When the social science evidence is exhaustively examined–which the ASA has done–the facts demonstrate that children fare just as well when raised by same-sex parents … Unsubstantiated fears regarding same-sex child rearing do not overcome these facts and do not justify upholding DOMA and Proposition 8.” When considering that same-sex marriage has been a reality in Canada and many European countries for some time without incident, and studies have shown that it is the quality of family life, not the family structure, that provides the stability, it becomes apparent that same-sex marriages have just as much of a chance to produce screwed up kids as heterosexual marriages do. While there will certainly remain significant doubts among those who oppose such unions and whether or not such unions are ideal, the SCOTUS implicitly ruled that such concerns don’t rise to the level needed to overcome the harms caused to gay and lesbian married couples and their children.

What are your thoughts on this ruling? Will this validation actually provide more stability for same-sex families, or will the change not be so apparent? Do you feel that there is more value having two parents of the opposite sex, and if so, is it worth legislating against?

Read more: Blogs, Caregiving, Children, Family, Life, Love, News & Issues, Parenting at the Crossroads, Relationships, , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Eric Steinman

Eric Steinman is a freelance writer based in Rhinebeck, NY. He regularly writes about food, music, art, architecture, and culture and is a regular contributor to Bon Appétit among other publications.


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3:16PM PDT on Apr 25, 2015

It is all about commitment - anyone who is prepared to commit him/herself to another person needs to be applauded, no matter whether (s)he is gay or straight.

Real family values is about treating people equally - commitment and responsibility vs. their lack. Treat others as you would like to be treated yourself. Imagine yourself in other people's shoes, and do not judge lest ye be judged.

Of course that same-sex couples should be able to marry the person they love. I suspect we will all look back someday and wonder what all the fuss has been about - the same way we would not question equal rights for people of different ethnicities, religious creeds or disabilities today.

5:34PM PDT on Aug 7, 2013

Gay marriages are the most harmful environment for children. Gays and lesbians should not be allowed to adopt them.
How the the gay people born on this earth? What if there parents were gay too, could their birth ever took place? So for God's sake and for the adopted child's sake let them grow up in a natural environment, because this is how God had created us. Man and woman and never man and man or woman and woman. This is the dead end of the humanity.

1:56AM PDT on Jul 6, 2013

Great Article Shared

12:43AM PDT on Jul 6, 2013

I think one of the most iportant lessons to teach children is the nature of equality. Children have a very deep sense of justice, and if their family is being discriminated against, that is what can hurt them and undermine their confidence and sense of self. They love their parents, and to see them being denied a basic right causes them deep injury. Think back to our version of "apartheid" here in the US until the civil rights movement gave all Americans (at least on paper) the same rights. We were an injured, handicapped nation before that. This ruling gives us a chance to heal another great wrong and I am proud to be an American on days like the one where the Supreme court gave the SCOTUS ruling.

3:44PM PDT on Jul 4, 2013

Of course gay marriages should not exist in the first place and yes theyre a bad example for kids , is not natural so the kids will be gays too, where is the moral in this world?

2:50AM PDT on Jul 4, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

4:24AM PDT on Jul 2, 2013

To be loved and feeling safe as a child is the most important thing of all........
Thank you for sharing.

4:25AM PDT on Jul 1, 2013

Gays should be able to get married if they want to.

3:09AM PDT on Jul 1, 2013

Who ever doubted that is a nutter...children need love and stability!

3:07AM PDT on Jul 1, 2013

As long as there's love!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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