Somebody to Love

I was thirteen when my parents first busted me for dressing up.

I learned a lot of new mean sounding words that night, words that were a lot meaner even than sissy.

I learned that it was expected that I would grow up queer and that expectation was reason enough for my parents to start withholding love and affection.

I was such an obvious transkid every  move I made, every thing I liked was cause for suspicion.

I got busted a lot over the next few years.

In 1962, I was 15. They found my clippings of April Ashley’s tabloid biography. They confronted me with it and I came out as transsexual for the first time.

My parents told me at that point:

“If you decide to be like that when you grow up, no one will ever love you, not a man, not a woman, not even queer men or women… No one.”

I was already experiencing the intense loneliness of being a small town transkid.

But I grew up cute and it was the era of free love and if there was one thing I found in great plenitude it was people to have sex with if not give me love.

Now negotiating relationships is hard enough for post-ops, even pretty post-ops.

An awful lot of us wind up alone and feeling unlovable.

It doesn’t help to have people disparage our genitals, no matter what our genitals are.

That goes for dogmatic Transgender Borg, for RadFems disparaging the genitals of post-ops and for HBS/CTs disparaging the genitals of pre-ops/TG sisters and brothers.

Much has been made of some pre-op or TG sisters using seemingly incongruous terms for their genitals.

Sister acting shocked over some people revealing these terms on the internet is kind of hypocritical, embarrassed might be a better reaction.

If you ever spent anytime hanging out with sisters you’ve heard these silly phrases tossed about.

Seeing them posted in reputable blogs is cringe inducing, sort of like Rep Anthony Wiener sexting pictures of his dick.

Why hand people sticks to beat us with?

I’m a bit of a fan of George Lakoff, if you are a regular here, you have seen the articles I’ve tried to tempt you into reading.

He talks a lot about framing and a whole lot of the ideas I’ve heard from too may TGs and more than a few post-TS folks have been framed in ways that make us sound sort of mental.

Part of the problem is that society wants to lump us into a sexuality binary of straight or gay based on our present genitals.  Forget bisexual for a moment.

Radfems want to divide us based on chromosomal sex and don’t much care what our present genitals are.

Most people don’t want to hear about the role of gender in defining sexual relationships, how two people with the same type of genitals may be in a heterogendered relationship while two people with different type genitals might be in a homogendered relationship.

My mother had just wrapped her mind around my living as a woman and working towards SRS when Jerry, my boyfriend moved in with me.  When she called him my room mate I corrected her and said, “He’s my lover.”

She asked, “What do you do, how?”

I was smart enough to say, “Mother! I’m as much of a girl for him as I can be with the body I have.”

There is such a thing as sharing too much information.

Especially with the radfems trying to deconstruct everything we say.

That said the right to love and not have sex acts that are common sex acts, criminalized or perversified due to having been born TS/TG should not be denied us.  Our having to negotiate our lives with either pre/non-op bodies or with post-SRS bodies is hard enough for us without being ridiculed for wanting to be able to love someone and be loved by someone.

The radfems have twisted whole Cotton Ceiling thing.

It isn’t about forcing some radfem that hates us to have sex with us.

It about wanting to have the same chances in life to connecting with some one we can have a relationship with that Cis-Sex/gender people have. Without the level of dehumanizing propaganda, without the propaganda that says we deserve to be abused or even killed for having that desire for someone to love and be loved by.

We are surrounded by the message that we don’t deserve love because we are different.

We live in a world where people push the meme that we are deceiving people, trying to trick them into joining us in a loving relationship.

We are supposed to be out and honest yet we are abused and discriminated against for that outness and honesty.

We have to walk a tight rope when it comes to when, where and how we tell potential mates.

Many of us are murdered by men who openly talk about kicking the shit out of any trannie at any time, not because the sister even approached them but because they discovered someone they were initially attracted to was TS or TG.

If we are lesbian or bisexual women, we are called “pretenbians” by “lesbians” who may well be so anti-sex as to never have sex with anyone. Or who are in certain cases actually married to men.

Pretendbian…  Roll that around in your head for a moment and then jump back to what I said about heterogender/homogender relationships.

I’ve had lesbian relationships with TG sisters that were homogendered, lesbian relationships even if the sex acts were such that some would try to call them heterosexual.

Life isn’t fucking black and white and can’t be measured by exacting standards.

The lesbian community has never been all that comfortable a place for many lesbians, not just those of us with trans-prefixed words attached to us.

It is down right uncomfortable when we not only have to deal with our being abused but with partners or potential partners being abused for being in a relationship with us.

I’ve been lucky.  I’m bisexual and I’m part of a much wider and more accepting counter-culture of hip and creative people who are more likely to be attracted to someone without having a bunch of other people attack them for being in a relationship with me.

We are human beings.  Some of us are sexy and young others old and plain, sort of like all humanity.

We might have been born different with something about us that led to our being TS or TG but what ever it was that caused us to grow up different didn’t make us non-humans.

We may be post-transsexual, pre-op or transgender yet were have the same emotional needs  as every other person, even if we were told as children that no one would ever love us.

Even if our families disowned us.

Even if our relationships were destroyed when we came out.

Needing someone to love and be loved by is a human need and we are human beings.

Ida Hammer attempts to talk to Cathy Brennan after the NYC Dyke March 2012

From You Tube:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EqwU2t1q620&feature=plcp

Published on Jun 26, 2012 by

New York City—On June 23, 2012, Ida Hammer approached Cathy Brennan in Washington Square Park after the Dyke March in order to clarify that the NYC Dyke March supports all women whether they are cis, trans or otherwise.

This interaction was prompted by a number of women who attended the march coming up to Ms. Hammer to express concerns about how Ms. Brennan has been targeting women and girls because they are trans. Ms. Hammer asked if these people would like to go talk to Brennan in person.

Ms. Hammer approached Ms. Brennan and said welcome to the New York City Dyke March where we support trans women. Ms. Brennan did not seem intimidated or threatened by this welcome and said she too supports trans women. Ms. Hammer tried to have a discussion with Ms. Brennan about the concerns the women who approached her had with her aggressively targeting and harassing women and girls.

As you can see in this video captured by a bystander, Ms. Hammer is unable to communicate these concerns as Ms. Brennan continues to talk over her. So Ms. Hammer exits the conversation. Ms. Brennan continues to talk with the other women moving to another area of the park.

Later that night, Ms. Hammer posted on Twitter:

“The @NYCDykeMarch is for ALL women! All self-identified women are welcome. All lesbian, bi and queer women whether cis or trans.”

Ms. Brennan replied on Twitter:

“@IdaHammer @NYCDykeMarch except wbw are not welcome. And you assaulted me. Well done dyke march! Video forthcoming.”

Ms. Brennan is encouraged to post the video she has of her interaction with Ms. Hammer as a video response.

Ms. Hammer has not interacted with Ms. Brennan before or after the conversation at Washington Square Park, yet Ms. Brennan has since been aggressively targeting Ms. Hammer with the very harassment that Ms. Hammer wanted to have a discussion about with Ms. Brennan.

Video Transcription:

Brennan: And that’s what this is about!

Hammer: Well okay. But…

Brennan: That is what this is about!

Hammer: I’ve… I’ve looked at your Twitter feed. (To third person:) I’ve looked at her Twitter feed.

Brennan: What’s your name again?

Hammer: (Laughs) I don’t want to be put on your hit list. I don’t…

Brennan: (simultaneously) because, like I…

Brennan: I don’t have a hit list! Do you not know what these guys are doing?

Third person (to Brennan ): I’ve seen your hit list!

(Simultaneously)

Hammer: I… Look, I’m trying to… I looked at your twitter feed and every twitter that you write is “Fuck you” “@ so and so, Fuck you” “@ so and so fuck you”

Brennan: Do you not know what these guys are doing? Do you not know what these people are doing to lesbians in the community? Are you fucking kidding me? Are you fucking kidding me?Alright.

Third person (to Hammer): Do you have to…? We don’t need…

Brennan: No! No.

(Conversations split, Brennan and Hammer no longer talking to each other)

Third person (to Hammer): I have a question. (Hammer turns attention to this person). I have a question. I’m not trying to be anything, okay? Women…. (drowned out by fourth person yelling).

Fourth person (to Brennan): But how often do you like, actually let trans women have a voice? Because she… (drowned out by Brennan yelling).

Brennan (to fourth person): I have…!

Fourth person (to Brennan): No! Because she’s trying to talk to you and…

Brennan (to fourth person): She’s not trying to talk to me! She came up to me with her gang…

Fourth person (to Brennan): She is trying to talk to you! (Hammer turns attention to this conversation for a second, but returns it to the third person quickly and they walk out of scene).

(Incomprehensible talking between fourth person and Brennan).

Fourth person (to Brennan): As a cis-woman, as a fellow cis-woman, I’m very disappointed.

Brennan (to fourth person): I am not cis! I am not cis!

Fourth person (to Brennan): Then Why, why..?

(video ends).

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Racial Profiling and Trans People

From Rights Working Group:  http://www.rightsworkinggroup.org/content/racial-profiling-and-trans-people

by Keith Rushing
on Tue, 2012-06-26

By Ryan Durgin, National Center for Transgender Equality

It’s a disturbing reality that today people of color often cannot drive down the highway or walk down the street without fear of being stopped by police just because of the color of their skin. Trans people of color are especially at risk as their gender expression or identification may not fit what law enforcement officials expect. This often leads to law enforcement classifying Trans people of color as “suspicious” or outside of what they consider to be the norm.

This then leads to high rates of arrest, harassment, physical and sexual assault.

The National Transgender Discrimination Surveyrevealed shocking statistics on the experiences of Trans people with law enforcement:

  • Thirty-eight percent of Black respondents had been harassed by the police compared to 18% of their white counterparts.
  • Forty-one percent of Black respondents reported being held in a cell because of their gender identity alone compared to 4% of their white counterparts.
  • Forty-seven percent of Black and Latino/a respondents were treated disrespectfully by law enforcement compared to 25% of their white counterparts.

This kind of profiling has hurt thousands of Black and Latino/a people in New York City with their stop-and-frisk laws, profiling by race. Last year, 87% of the people that New York police officers stopped were Black or Latino/a. In 2010 the Department of Justice (DOJ) opened an investigation of the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) following numerous complaints from black and transgender community members and advocates about harassment, sexual violence, and arrest without cause. Following the investigation, the DOJ released a report stating that the NOPD was exhibiting “unconstitutional conduct.” Even though the DOJ classified this racial and gender profiling as unconstitutional in their report, we still see it happening in places like New York today.

This month, national LGBT equality groups joined racial justice and civil rights organizations to rally against New York City’s discriminatory stop-and-frisk policy. While law enforcement officials and Mayor Bloomberg fail to convince us that policies like this keep our communities safe, racial profiling continues to make it difficult for Trans people of color to live their lives. The only thing stop-and-frisk protects are harmful racial and gender stereotypes.

This is why the National Center for Transgender Equality, along with other Trans and LGB equality groups, support the passage of the End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA). If ERPA became law, it would ban racial and religious profiling and provide training for law enforcement on appropriate responses in police arrest and detainment procedures.

Ryan Durgin, is a communications intern with The National Center for Transgender Equality, a social justice organization dedicated to advancing equality for transgender people through advocacy, collaboration, and empowerment. Check out our blog, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitterfor more information and updates.

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Facing Fear… And Having Dinner With Him

From Huffington Post:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leslie-lagerstrom/facing-fear-and-having-dinner-with-him_b_1641284.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices


07/02/2012

In my defense, I was still in a state of denial. Well, sort of. Sam was 10 years old, and deep down we knew what we were dealing with; we just hadn’t said it out loud that often, and when we did, it was only between my husband and me. That was the same year Oprah aired her first show on transgender children. As I recall, the carefully scripted promotion for an upcoming show caught my attention from the get-go, simultaneously scaring and luring me with the information she promised to share, information that I knew I needed but didn’t want to hear:

“Be sure to watch next Thursday, when we air a special show on children born in the wrong bodies.”

Her calm voice made the subject seem as common as her shows on favorite books or notable celebrities. And so I tuned in.

I remember not wanting Sam to see the show, thinking, foolishly, that if she wasn’t really transgender, I shouldn’t give her any ideas. Oh, if it were only that simple. In her bedroom down the hall, she was oblivious to what I was watching as she conscientiously worked on her spelling words for the next school day. Still worried about her hearing the show, I sat with my nose two inches from the television with the volume set on low. Before me was a 15-year-old named Jake, a child who was born female but had transitioned to being a boy, who bravely told Oprah his story. As the details of his life unfolded on air, the fear in me escalated until I couldn’t breathe. To put it bluntly, Jake’s story scared the hell out of me, because it so closely resembled our own.

“Wait! There are kids like that out there?” asked Sam’s eager voice, coming from behind me. So immersed in the show was I that I had not seen her enter the room. The excitement in her voice gave me another jolt of fear.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/leslie-lagerstrom/facing-fear-and-having-dinner-with-him_b_1641284.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices

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Mark Regnerus And NOM’s Anti-Gay-Rights ‘Expert Witness Project’

From The New Civil Rights Movement:  http://thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/mark-regnerus-and-noms-anti-gay-rights-expert-witness-project/politics/2012/07/02/42580

by Scott Rose
on July 2, 2012

Reposted with Permission

Mark Regnerus is a University of Texas at Austin Associate Professor of Sociology.

His professional integrity was cast into doubt in June, 2012 after the appearance of his The New Family Structures Study, on the basis of which Regnerus published a paper in which he falsely claimed to have scientifically revealed that parents who have ever had a same-sex romantic relationship are more dangerous to children than are heterosexual married parents.

Quickly, it was noted that Regnerus had not actually surveyed young adult children raised by gay or lesbian parents between the 1970s and the 1990s, as he had alleged he aimed to do for his study. Regnerus essentially has admitted that those critical observations are accurate; but he has been inventing alibis for why he proceeded with his study, though he had not actually been able to survey young adult children raised by gay or lesbian parents.

What Regnerus did, was to disingenuously cherry-pick his control groups to seek to justify, unscientifically, his prejudices against gay and lesbian parents. Regnerus worked with an invalid sample. Such practices seriously deviate from ethical standards for proposing, conducting and reporting research. The complaint filed against Regnerus does not regard ordinary errors, good faith differences in interpretations or judgments of data, scholarly or political disagreements, good faith personal or professional opinions, or private moral or ethical behavior. In the matter of the Scientific Misconduct Inquiry into the behavior of Mark Regnerus, the University of Texas, Austin’s honor and reputation could be at the stake.

The sum and substance of Regnerus’s alibis are 1) that he used the best available population survey method to survey a tiny population, and that; 2) because he did not survey an adequate number of young adult children raised by gay parents, but; 3) wanted to carry out a study on such persons anyway, he; 4) decided to make stuff up about gay parents and children, and hope for the best for himself.

Notwithstanding that Regnerus made stuff up about gay parents, Regnerus further misrepresented the results of his study when he told The National Review that “This study definitely affirms that there is a gold standard” for parenting, and that the gold standard is the “intact biological heterosexual-headed family.” Regnerus’s study affirmed no such thing. Regnerus did not compare young adult children raised in stable gay-headed households with young adult children raised in heterosexual-headed households. He did not do that in his study, but is talking to the public as though he had, in a way that unjustly demonizes gay parents. As stated above: what Regnerus did, was to disingenuously cherry-pick his control groups to seek to justify, unscientifically, his prejudices against gay and lesbian parents. Such practices seriously deviate from ethical standards for proposing, conducting and reporting research. The University of Texas, Austin, should be extremely concerned that their Associate Professor Regnerus is cherry-picking study control groups to seek to justify his prejudices, and then adding insult to injury by telling the public false things about what his study demonstrated.

Regnerus’s claims that he used the best available population sampling method for his study are false. One of the most troubling factors of his willingness to make stuff up about gay parents, and hope for the best for himself, is that, those portions of his study funding, so far to be revealed to the public came from The Witherspoon Institute, where Robert P. George, mastermind of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is a Senior Fellow, and The Bradley Foundation, where Robert George is a Board member. Robert George and NOM are notorious for making stuff up about — and that is to say — telling negative lies about — gay people.

Before Regnerus obtained full study funding from Robert George’s groups, he received a “planning grant” from Witherspoon. Witherspoon had to approve of his study design before he would receive the study grant. A UTA Director of Public Affairs told this reporter that the planning grant was for $35,000, but the CV document viewable on Regnerus’s own website says that the planning grant was for $55,000. UTA officials, asked for complete records of disbursements of study funds, including how much Regnerus was paid, at first told this reporter that they had already gotten to work on assembling the documentation, but later said that an open records act request would have to be filed.

Regnerus’s funding fixer, NOM’s Robert George, is an author of the NOM pledge signed by Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney. The pledge intends to see created a federal constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriages throughout the country. Regnerus’s study introduction notes the importance of child-rearing studies to “the legal boundaries of marriage.”

Regnerus’s personal background suggests that he harbors anti-gay prejudices. This would not be an issue, were his science sound. It is possible that the generous funding dangled in front of him clouded his judgement. As an adult, Regnerus converted to Catholicism, led by a Pope whom Catholics consider “infallible” and who has stated that stopping same-sex marriages is necessary for the future of humanity. The most powerful Catholic Church employee in America, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, threatened President Obama with “a national conflict between church and state of enormous proportions” if he did not stop liberalizing in his attitudes and actions on gay rights matters. Many of Regnerus’s published papers, meanwhile, appear to reveal his personal concern with strengthening obedience to churches known to oppose gay rights. For example, in his article How Corrosive Is College to Religious Faith and Practice?, he described college professors “antagonistic” towards religious students (instead of acknowledging, for instance, that it is not appropriate for a college-level religious student to insist on a creationism argument in the middle of a lecture on Darwin), and he wrote that “evangelical efforts tend to connect best with the dormant faith and inactive-but-intact belief systems of previously religious youth.” In that last phrase, had Regnerus written “connect most readily with” instead of “connect best with,” he might have avoided an appearance that he was injecting his opinion into his research finding.

What is the National Organization for Marriage’s Expert Witness Project?

In March, 2012, NOM internal strategy documents were released through court order. Those NOM documents revealed shocking disregard for the well-being of children by, for example, plotting to drive a wedge and to fan hostility between African-Americans, Latinos and gays. No reputable psychologist has ever said that fanning hostilities between minority groups is a net positive for children in the society. NOM also was scheming to get children of gay parents to denounce their parents on camera. Again, exacerbating animosities between parents and children, where animosities exist, does not promote child well-being.

Here is how the NOM documents describe the goals of NOM’s Expert Witness Project:

“identify and nurture a worldwide community of highly credentialed intellectuals and professional scholars, physicians, psychiatrists, social workers, and writers to credential our concerns and to interrupt the silencing that takes place in the academy around gay marriage and related family issues. Marriage as the union of husband and wife has deep grounding in human nature, and is supported by serious social science.”

NOM wasted no time in using Regnerus’s study as an anti-gay-rights political cudgel; the appearance is strong that Regnerus could be in cahoots with Robert George in anti-gay-rights promotions of the study. For example, Regnerus claimed that his study “affirmed” that the “intact biological family” is “the gold standard,” superior in child-rearing results to anything that  gay or lesbian couples are able to achieve in raising children. His study affirmed no such thing; that is exactly the type of misleading statement that NOM’s Robert George would have Regnerus make, if he were paying him to do study-related public relations for NOM.

How Has Regnerus Been Promoting His Study?

In both his written study and the mass media, Regnerus has been trumpeting his study as a breakthrough in gay parenting research. He portrays himself as a NOM-pipe dream, knight in shining armor, saving the day for the heterosexual-only legal boundaries of marriage by proving that gay parents are dangerous to children. All research on gay parenting carried out in the last ten years and showing good child outcomes, Regnerus describes as being scientifically unsound, in contrast to his study, which he falsely portrays as being scientifically sound.

Firstly, there is nothing new about Regnerus’s methods of helping his funders to demonize gay people in a political context.

Regnerus is promoting his work as though this method of attempting to discredit gay parents were some new invention of his, when as a matter of documented fact, his work is a tired old dirty trick.

In 2006, Gregory M. Herek, a University of California, Davis professor surveyed the literature of gay parenting studies. Herek’s criticism of people relying on studies to demonize gay and lesbian parents is, in essence, identical to the criticisms now being made of Regnerus’s methodology; namely, cherry-picking of control groups to seek to justify anti-gay prejudices. This is where the observer can confirm that Regnerus’s practices seriously deviate from ethical standards for proposing, conducting and reporting research.

According to Herek’s extensive review of the literature in 2006; 1) the research on which opponents to marriage of same-sex couples rely looks at the functioning of children in intact families with heterosexual parents, and compares that to 2) those children raised by a single parent following divorce or death of a spouse. Additionally, according to Herek, it must be understood that; 3) those efforts to discredit gay parents never include any studies that compare the functioning of children raised by heterosexual couples, with the functioning of children raised by same-sex couples. And, 4) in the group of studies Herek was criticizing, any differences observed are more accurately attributable to the effects of death or divorce, and/or to the effects  of living with a single parent, rather than to parents’ sexual orientation.  Herek concluded that those studies that were being used to attempt to demonize gay parents; 5) do not tell us that the children of same-sex parents in an intact relationship fair worse than the children of opposite-sex parents in an intact relationship.

Regnerus’s study does not tell us that either, but in his promotions of it — which have some appearance of being coordinated with those of his funders — he behaves as though it had. Regnerus did not compare children raised by stable heterosexual couples with those raised by stable homosexual couples, yet he says that his study “affirmed” that married heterosexual couples are the “gold standard” for child rearing.

The Lie at the Heart of NOM’s Expert Witness Project

NOM’s strategy documents stated that an aim of the Expert Witness Project is “to interrupt the silencing that takes place in the academy around gay marriage and related family issues.”

As Herek’s 2006 survey of the literature of gay parenting studies showed, however, there is no “silencing” taking place in the academy around gay marriage and related family issues. Rather, there is accurate, evidence-based criticism of underhanded attempts to discredit gay parents, attempts that like Regnerus’s study, are not evidence based, and are ideology-driven.

It must be mentioned that there is no child-bearing requirement attached to a marriage license, nor must one be married to have children. Foster care children have been either abandoned or abused by their heterosexual parents. The number of foster care children in the last 15 years has dramatically declined because of gay parent adoptions. NOM’s goals of stigmatizing such families and seeing them legally disadvantaged stems wholly from anti-gay bigotry, and has nothing to do with a genuine interest in child welfare.

Regnerus knew, or should have known, that his funding fixer, NOM’s Robert George, has sponsored anti-gay-rights rallies where NOM speakers have told crowds that homosexuals are “worthy to death” and that Robert George was certain to make dishonorable uses of the anti-gay-rights political propaganda he commissioned from Regnerus. Regnerus, moreover, has admitted that had he gotten funding for a gay parenting child outcomes study from the National Institutes of Health, the standards they would have required from him in his planning, carrying out and reporting of the study would have worked to the long-term best-interests of science, but that “some scholars don’t feel like going that route.”

The Regnerus Study Has Already Been Used in a DOMA Case Brief

Regnerus’s study became available online late on Sunday, June 10, 2012. Barely two days later, on June 12, 2012, an amicus brief submitted to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the Golinski DOMA-related case was based almost entirely on the Regnerus study. The brief relies heavily on Regnerus’s study to allege that homosexuals are dangerous to children and that therefore, the judge must decide against gay rights.

That amicus brief was filed by the American College of Pediatricians. The Southern Poverty Law Center designates the ACP as an Anti-Gay Group and describes it as “a tiny, explicitly religious-right breakaway group from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the 60,000 member association of the profession.” Umpteen scientists have issued countless declarations complaining that the ACP has distorted their scientific observations in order to make a point against homosexuality. A typical headline reporting on the ACP’s anti-gay distortions of real science is: University of Minnesota Professor’s Research Hijacked. The National Association of Social Workers has described the ACP as a “small and marginal group,” “out of step with the research-based position of the” far larger and more widely respected “American Academy of Pediatricians and other medical and child welfare authorities.”

NOM’s Expert Witness Project and the Scientific Misconduct Inquiry Regarding UTA’s Mark Regnerus

Below are enumerated some of the factors that the University of Texas, Austin, must take into consideration during its inquiry into Associate Professor Mark Regnerus’s behavior.

The public should understand that in UTA procedures and parlance, an Inquiry precedes an Investigation of a complaint. Nonetheless, during a UTA Inquiry, university authorities are actually conducting an investigation of sorts. Here is how UTA defines “Inquiry;” “Inquiry means gathering information and initial fact-finding to determine whether an allegation or apparent instance of scientific misconduct warrants an investigation.”

Another definition to keep in mind is that UTA gives for “Conflict of Interest;” “Conflict of Interest means the real or apparent interference of one person’s interests with the interests of another person or entity, where the potential bias may occur due to prior or existing personal or professional relationships.”

Furthermore, UTA policy states that: “As a part of an inquiry, the Research Integrity Officer must ensure that all original research records and materials, and all documents relevant to the allegation are immediately secured.”

I have asked Dr. Robert Peterson, UTA’s Research Integrity Officer, for a complete list of relevant documents that he has secured; Dr. Peterson has not yet provided that list.

1) In his written study, and in his public statements about the study, Regnerus has made claims documented as untrue; 2) Regnerus took a study planning grant from The Witherspoon Institute, where the anti-gay-rights National Organization for Marriage’s head Robert George is a Senior Fellow; 3) A majority of top-rated sociologists consider that Regnerus’s study plan is shoddy, fixed so as to guarantee that gay parents will be unjustly defamed through it, and that it was an unscientific plan rigged for use in anti-gay-rights political argumentation, similar to many criticized for those same reasons by U.C. Davis’s Dr. Gregory M. Herek, when he surveyed the literature of gay parenting studies, back in 2006. Nonetheless; 4) Robert George’s Witherspoon Institute, and Robert George’s Bradley Foundation, approved funding for Regnerus’s study; 5) Many of Regnerus’s practices seriously deviate from ethical standards for proposing, conducting and reporting research; 6) Regnerus’s written study introduction makes plain his desire to appear to provide expert testimony that works to limit the legal boundaries of marriage to heterosexual couples only, a goal consistent with; 7) the National Organization for Marriage’s head Robert George, who is known to be trying to advance NOM’s Expert Witness Project; 8) NOM’s Robert George has authority within The Witherspoon Institute, which gave Regnerus his planning grant, as well as within both organizations so far known to have funded Regnerus’s study; 9) a sampling method exists, through which Regnerus would have been able to survey young adult offspring raised by gay parents, but Regnerus used an inferior sampling method that did not allow him to survey actual young adult children of gay parents. Regnerus nevertheless; 10) is alleging that his study revealed bad child outcomes for gay parents. In that, he is like; 11) a particle physicist who can not afford to use a particle accelerator, so carries out his study in a Dixie cup but then reports on the study as though he had carried it out in a particle accelerator.

The University of Texas, Austin must leave no stone unturned in its inquiry into whether Regnerus is in cahoots with the National Organization for Marriage in its Expert Witness Project, as an appearance exists that Regnerus has been scheming and collaborating with his funders, in ways indicative of practices that seriously deviate from ethical standards for proposing, conducting and reporting research. It is to be hoped that UTA officials have already sequestered evidence of Regnerus’s communications with the Witherspoon Institute, which gave him his study “planning grant” and then approved him for actual study funding. Regnerus’s personal thoughts and feelings about same-sex marriage and related family issues would not be of consequence in this, were his science sound. It is not irrelevant, however, to note that Regnerus’s thoughts and beliefs do appear to align with those of his study’s funders. He is, moreover, promoting his study in ways that the study’s funding organizations and those associated with those funding organizations then showcase on their website dedicated to his study, as well as in many additional places, including in DOMA-related court cases.

UTA Sociology Professor Debra Umberson, together with three additional UTA Family Sociologists, published an article assessing the scientific merits of Regnerus’s study. Umberson wrote: “As a family sociologist at the University of Texas, I am disturbed by his irresponsible and reckless representation of social science research, and furious that he is besmirching my university to lend credibility to his ‘findings.’” Something else Umberson wrote creates an impression that Regnerus worked more closely with the known anti-gay-rights crusaders who gave him his study planning grant than with sociologists knowledgeable about gay-headed families: “the first I learned of this study was when it hit the press. Had Regnerus walked down the hall and knocked on my door, I would have been happy to explain that stress and instability harm children in any family context. Love and support help children to thrive and succeed. Pseudo-science that demonizes gay and lesbian families contributes to stress, and is not good for children.”

 

New York City-based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT-interest by-line has appeared on Advocate.com, PoliticusUSA.com, The New York Blade, Queerty.com, Girlfriends and in numerous additional venues. Among his other interests are the arts, boating and yachting, wine and food, travel, poker and dogs. His “Mr. David Cooper’s Happy Suicide” is about a New York City advertising executive assigned to a condom account.

We repeat; In the matter of the Scientific Misconduct Inquiry into the behavior of Mark Regnerus, the University of Texas, Austin’s honor and reputation could be at the stake.

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Old Mitt’s Investment in a Fetus-Disposal Company Is Not a Great Thing for New Mitt

From New York Magazine:  http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/07/romney-invested-in-a-fetus-disposal-company.html

By
July 2, 2012

That Bain Capital investment in Stericycle, a medical-waste company that helps to dispose of aborted fetuses? When Huffington Post reported on it earlier this year, Bain officials insisted that Mitt Romney, the currently pro-life Republican presidential candidate, had already left Bain when it happened, in 1999. But a trove of financial filings uncovered by Mother Jones appears to show the very opposite:

The SEC filing lists assorted Bain-related entities that were part of the deal, including Bain Capital (BCI), Bain Capital Partners VI (BCP VI), Sankaty High Yield Asset Investors (a Bermuda-based Bain affiliate), and Brookside Capital Investors (a Bain offshoot). And it notes that Romney was the “sole shareholder, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of BCI, BCP VI Inc., Brookside Inc. and Sankaty Ltd.”

The document also states that Romney “may be deemed to share voting and dispositive power with respect to” 2,116,588 shares of common stock in Stericycle “in his capacity as sole shareholder” of the Bain entities that invested in the company …

Another SEC document filed November 30, 1999, by Stericycle also names Romney as an individual who holds “voting and dispositive power” with respect to the stock owned by Bain.

Continue reading at:  http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/07/romney-invested-in-a-fetus-disposal-company.html

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Greenland Ice Sheet Melt Nearing Critical ‘Tipping Point’

From Climate Central:  http://www.climatecentral.org/news/greenland-ice-sheet-reflectivity-near-record-low-research-shows/

By Andrew Freedman
June 29th, 2012

The Greenland ice sheet is poised for another record melt this year, and is approaching a “tipping point” into a new and more dangerous melt regime in which the summer melt area covers the entire land mass, according to new findings from polar researchers.

The ice sheet is the focus of scientific research because its fate has huge implications for global sea levels, which are already rising as ice sheets melt and the ocean warms, exposing coastal locations to greater damage from storm surge-related flooding.

Greenland’s ice has been melting faster than many scientists expected just a decade ago, spurred by warming sea and land temperatures, changing weather patterns, and other factors. Until now, though, most of the focus has been on ice sheet dynamics — how quickly Greenland’s glaciers are flowing into the sea. But the new research raises a different basis for concern.

The new findings show that the reflectivity of the Greenland ice sheet, particularly the high-elevation areas where snow typically accumulates year-round, have reached a record low since records began in 2000. This indicates that the ice sheet is absorbing more energy than normal, potentially leading to another record melt year — just two years after the 2010 record melt season.

Continue reading at:  http://www.climatecentral.org/news/greenland-ice-sheet-reflectivity-near-record-low-research-shows/

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