The Debate over Gay Parenting

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Over the last several decades, gay rights have been a growing topic in the public and in the court rooms. Recently, the debate about gays having the right or ability to parent has become a hot topic, due to the expanding gay community. There are typically two stances taken on the topic of gay parenting: it’s wrong and should be illegal or it’s normal and should be legal. While the norms, stereotypes and debates about gay parenting have varied over the years, today there seems to be a positive consensus when it comes to the beliefs about children being raised by homosexuals.

Although today most psychologists agree that parents’ sexual orientation does not affect the well-being of a child, less than 40 years ago, doctors considered homosexuality a mental disorder causing hundreds of parents to lose visitation rights to their children. Arguments against gay parenting are all solely based on the sexual orientation of the parents, making this a large issue in sexual culture. An individual’s sexual orientation and history caused many parents to be declared mentally incompetent and a threat to their children. Often times in court, arguers classified homosexuals as repeat criminals due to sodomy laws and used that as grounds as to argue child endangerment. Since science was used to declare homosexuality a disorder and deem it deviant, many stereotypes, common beliefs and norms were established putting gays in a negative view.

Today homosexuality has become more accepted in our culture, however a significant amount of people still share the same anti-gay values and beliefs. When influential people, such as political candidates or The Pope, take such a strong stance against gays being able to parent, science is ignored when society crea...

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Children of Lesbian and Gay Parents

Charlotte J. Patterson

Child Development , Vol. 63, No. 5 (Oct., 1992), pp. 1025-1042

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