[Dale Carpenter (guest-blogging), November 3, 2005 at 10:39pm] Trackbacks
Response to commentators -- Day 4:

I'm afraid I didn't have time to read much of the commentary today. I do plan to go back and skim the commentary from this week later on. Since this will be my last commentary response, let me encourage you to send any burning questions I haven't answered to me directly at dalecarp@umn.edu.

I do have a couple of quick responses.

First, thanks to the commentator who pointed out that all this talk about gays and gay couples as "non-procreative" or "sterile" is actually a bit misleading. Many gay people have biological children through various means. It's especially common among lesbians, who have an easier time with artificial insemination than gay men do with hiring surrogates. Plus, of course, gay people raise their biological children from prior marriages. They will be raising these children no matter what we decide about gay marriage.

Second, a commentator brought up an essay by Stanley Kurtz purporting to show that "gay marriage" has led to a number of social pathologies in Scandinavia, including more out-of-wedlock births. Stanley Kurtz, "The End of Marriage in Scandinavia," Weekly Standard (February 2, 2004). This thesis has been carefully rebutted in M. V. Lee Badgett, Will Providing Marriage Rights to Same-Sex Couples Undermine Heterosexual Marriages? Evidence From Scandinavia and the Netherlands, Discussion Paper (Council on Contemporary Families and Institute for Gay and Lesbian Studies, July 2004), and in William N. Eskridge, Darren R. Spedale, and Hans Ytterberg, "Nordic Bliss? Scandinavian Registered Partnerships and the Same-Sex Marriage Debate," Issues in Legal Scholarship (available at www.bepress.com/ils/iss5/art4/).