Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Debate on Homosexuality/Gay Marriage: Statistics Part 2

The subject of ex-gays was also brought up quickly but we didn't really get a chance to delve into it much. Fist I don't much care whether people occasionally change their sexual orientation, that may be possible, but I find it irrelevant. For one thing these people may actually be bisexual and not aware of it. However my main problem with this is that even if sexual preference was 100% personal choice, even if I could simply wake up one morning and decide to be gay (and even most fundamentalists would not claim this) I would not care. Support for gay marriage about supporting the rights of people to marry whomever they love, regardless of gender, choice is a red herring in my opinion.

However, I will go one step further though and point out that the whole concept of ex-homosexual is undeniably wrapped up with gay conversion therapy, and the statistics there show that these programs rarely work and people who go through them have much higher rates of depression and suicide. so it seems a bit ridiculous to claim this is a healthy option.

Vocab claims to know ex-homosexuals, I'll happily admit he may know such people but who cares? I know others who are, and in fact I am, an ex-Christian. I'm sure Vocab would not like anyone limiting his civil rights to practice his religion just because some people like myself decided to stop following said religion. This isn't how civil rights work for good reason.

On the subject of gay marriage Vocab brought up a study done in Sweden suggesting that rates of divorce are much higher than that of heterosexual couples. Upon further research this turned about to be a perfect example of the poor way in which people in his camp frame statistics to make their case look strong when it is weak. First off, divorce is just as an important aspect of marriage laws as the actual marriage is. Relationships that end amicably are fine, but any relationship that ends badly may need legal involvement and marriage gives us such a system.

Secondly, marriage is simply not a very big deal in Sweden, most heterosexual couples don't even bother getting married themselves. It is clear that marriage and relationships are envisioned very differently in that country than here so it is pointless to extrapolate from this data how gay marriage would play out in our country.

So what about studies of divorce rates in other countries?

So the first link here shows a study in which they measured the rate of dissolution of civil partnerships for homosexuals in Great Brittan (they don't call it marriage there yet) and found that the statistics actually show lower rates than heterosexual couples. On top of that male homosexual couples actually had lower dissolution rates that the female couples.

The second link shows statistics that indicate that in states where same sex marriage is legal the divorce rates are again lower than than of heterosexual marriages. This one I find especially interesting because they are figures from the U.S.

The third study is interesting because it shows that the states with legal same sex marriage divorce rates for heterosexuals are lower than the national average as well.  Of course I am not suggesting that homosexual marriage is directly responsible for this, these numbers were lower before it was legalized. The point is that the states who are generally most religious and have the the largest number of people complaining that gay marriage will destroy the sanctity of the institution have the highest rates of divorce. It is interesting to say the least.

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