Mark Regnerus’ flawed paper on gay parenting has won the acclaim of hate groups and ex-gay therapists and its publication seems to have been politically calculated with marriage equality opponents like the National Organization for Marriage. A group of 18 anti-gay religiously-biased professors defended the paper, but now, a group of over 200 professors and therapists have written a “bombshell letter” critiquing its methods and publication.
Among the concerns are how quickly it was published, the validity of its peer review, and the merits of its methodology and conclusions:
We are very concerned about the academic integrity of the peer review process for this paper as well as its intellectual merit. We question the decision of Social Science Research to publish the paper, and particularly, to publish it without an extensive, rigorous peer review process and commentary from scholars with explicit expertise on LGBT family research. The methodologies used in this paper and the interpretation of the findings are inappropriate.
The publication of this paper and the accompanying commentary calls the editorial process at Social Science Research, a well-regarded, highly cited social science journal (ranking in the top 15% of Sociology journals by ISI), into serious question. We urge you to publicly disclose the reasons for both the expedited peer review process of this clearly controversial paper and the choice of commentators invited to submit critiques. We further request that you invite scholars with specific expertise in LGBT parenting issues to submit a detailed critique of the paper and accompanying commentaries for publication in the next issue of the journal.
Read the full letter for more detail about the professors’ concerns.
The data in this study clearly lacks the integrity to actually impact mainstream psychological thinking on the question of same-sex parenting, as exemplified by this letter and the American Psychological Association’s rebuke of the study. Whether its publication was politically intentional is irrelevant to the fact that the only purpose it serves is to add to the stack of invalid studies the anti-gay movement cites to defend its anti-equality actions.