Article Title:Rotten Apples: Maxim, Antigay Data and the Cameron Connection
Category:Comment
Author or Credit:Craig Young
Published on:19th December 2003 - 12:00 pm
Published by:GayNZ.com
Story ID:141
Text:In a recent column, I suggested that the Maxim Institute (or the US Family Research Council) had ransacked the bargain basement for allegedly 'negative data' about lesbian/gay spousal violence, alcohol and drug consumption, relationship duration and ...unsafe sex (from the eighties). Thanks to the stupidity of the Australian Christian Right, I can report that the real source of this negative alleged data is none other than Paul Cameron, the discredited US fundamentalist Christian junk 'social scientist,' expelled from numerous professional associations on the basis of research ethics violations and fabrication of data. His professional reputation (sic) is so vile that it has become remarkably easy to use his demonstrable malignancy and lack of professional aptitude to discredit anyone who is still foolish enough to cite him as a direct source. According to the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute "Adoption by Same-Sex Couples" report, the Festival of Light (Adelaide), Salt Shakers (Adelaide), Baptist Churches of Tasmania and Australian Family Association (Melbourne) did cite Cameron as an "authoritative" source for the aforementioned fabricated claims about negative lesbian and gay social behaviour. Worse still, the FOL and Salt Shakers carry resource papers and links to Cameron's old junk science and his "Family Research Institute" website. The Maxim Institute needs to realise that this revelation has cut the ground out from under its feet in this debate. I don't think it can take direct responsibility for this amusing little strategic blunder, because they derived this strategy from the US Family Research Council. What are the implications of this discovery? Not only is Cameron a fraud, he is a mediocre practitioner of social science as well, and questions must be raised about methodological rigour in this alleged 'negative' data about lesbian and gay social behaviours. How large was the sample? How long did the procedure intend to sample? Was there a control group? Is it taken from a representative or biased clinical population? And why quote twenty-year old epidemiological data about HIV/AIDS and unsafe sex?? And if the Maxim Institute is unwilling to face questions about the origins and methodological rigour of its alleged 'negative data,' then why should we believe that its own critiques of positive relationship and parenting research come from disinterested origins? In the late nineties, Robert Lerner certainly wasn't willing to practice what he now preaches in the context of same-sex parenting research when he dismissed claims of institutional racism and sentencing on the basis of a mere five-person sample. It's all there in a paper for the anti-EEO "Center for Equal Opportunities" entitled "Acquittal Rates by Race for Jury Trials" (1997). Moreover, Lerner's anti-EEO ideologue past led to challenges for his appointment as a senior Bush education statistics apparatchik within the federal US Senate. Sadly, ideological conformity has become more important to the Bush administration than mainstream scientific practice or professional standards, according to Representative Henry Waxman. However, despite the Maxim Institute's derivative dishonesty, the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute wasn't fooled about the provenance and manipulation of data from the aforementioned Australian Christian Right sources. Again, I must commend this invaluable document to Gaynz.Com readers, as it carries a range of valuable information about the case for same-sex parenting. If Western Australia, Tasmania, South African and Canadian courts have all upheld the professional status of affirmative same-sex parenting research, then why should we believe the Maxim Institute's imported ideologues and junk scientists? Recommended Reading: Tasmanian Law Reform Institute: Adoption by Same Sex Couples: Hobart: The Institute: May 2003. Rep. Henry Waxman: "Politics and Science in the Bush Administration:" Contextual Reading: Linda Chavez (ed) Race and Jury Trials: Washington: Center for Equal Opportunity: c1997 -See especially Robert Lerner "Accquital Rates by Race for Jury Trials." Damning Reading The Festival of Light Salt Shakers Utterly Vile Homophobic Drivel: Family Research Institute (Paul Cameron) Warning: Do not consume food before you enter this website. Craig Young - 19th December 2003    
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