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Post image for NOM’s Douglas Allen’s Latest Bogus Anti-Gay Article

NOM’s Douglas Allen’s Latest Bogus Anti-Gay Article

by Scott Rose on November 30, 2012

in Analysis,Bigotry Watch,Discrimination,News,Scott Rose

Douglas Allen is an anti-gay bigot who sits on the National Organization For Marriage‘s-linked Ruth Institute Board of Advisors and is one of its “inner circle of experts.”

In a recent commentary published in the journal Demography, Allen alleges to have re-analyzed a study by Michael Rosenfeld showing that children of gay parents do as well in school as children of heterosexual parents.

Whereas Rosenfeld — using data from the 2000 Census — took pains to compare “apples with apples” — Allen pulls a Regnerus, lumping children of gay parents into one group and comparing them to children of married heterosexual parents, to say that: “Compared with traditional married households, we find that children being raised by same-sex couples are 35% less likely to make normal progress through school.”

I asked Gary Gates, Ph.D. of UCLA’s Williams Institute for his remarks on the Allen commentary:

“One challenge with both of these papers is that, according to Census Bureau estimates, 40% of the reported same-sex couples in the 2000 Census were likely different-sex married couples who miscoded the sex of one of the spouses and appeared to be same-sex couples.”  (See here for the Census’s own report on the errors). Gates continues: “Given that the bulk of these errors are among different-sex married couples who are substantially more likely to have children than same-sex couples, we now can assume that a substantial majority of the reported same-sex couples with children in the Census 2000 Public Use Microdata samples are likely different-sex couples with children. Official acknowledgement of this problem came after the Rosenfeld paper was published. There is a way to adjust the data to minimize this substantial error and Rosenfeld does report that the adjustment does not substantially change his conclusions. However, he ultimately reports on findings from unadjusted data (remember, the Census Bureau had not confirmed the extent of the problem when Rosenfeld published his paper). This new commentary does not address the issue at all. Without adjusting the data for this now well-documented measurement error, it is very difficult to determine how much this problem might impact the new analysis.” [Bolding added]

Asked via e-mail why his commentary did not address these issues, Allen refused to provide a direct explanation. “My guess is that over the past 2 years you never sent an e-mail like this to Rosenfeld asking why he would publish a paper using the 2000 census,” he said. Allen also said that I “miss the point entirely,” as though it were of no meaningful consequence to his commentary that in the data he used, the majority of students said to have gay parents actually had heterosexual parents.

Buried in his dense commentary, Allen confesses this: “we are unable to reject the hypothesis that there is no difference.”

Despite that fact, Allen told gay-bashing lies about his commentary in a pre-publication podcast with the Ruth Institute’s Jennifer Roback Morse. At the 14:15 mark of the podcast, Morse asks Allen if the “35% increase likelihood” of failing a year in school is “due to just the gayness,” with other variables — such as poverty — coming on top of “just the gayness.”

Allen tells her that is correct.

However, that is not what his commentary says.  Allen’s commentary does not at all demonstrate causation between having gay parents and dropping out, so the phrase “due to just the gayness” is plain wrong. Allen’s commentary also does not find that gay parents’ children have a likelihood of higher than 35% of being held back a year, so Morse’s statement that other variables, such as poverty, come on top of “just the gayness” creates a false impression, a false impression which Allen irresponsibly reinforces to the Ruth Institute listenership.

Besides the Ruth Institute podcast, Allen’s commentary was first reported to the public by NOM’s William Duncan in the notorious National Review, with Duncan’s report immediately cross-posted to the NOM blog.

Rosenfeld’s response to Allen — published in the same issue of Demography — contains a point-by-point take-down of this latest NOM-linked anti-gay pseudoscience junk.


New York City-based novelist and freelance writer Scott Rose’s LGBT-interest by-line has appeared on,, The New York Blade,, 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.

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Mykelbarber November 30, 2012 at 4:41 pm

This proves that NOM deserves the SPLC label of HATE GROUP. Telling willful lies and demonizing a group based on those lies is cause enough.

Str8Grandmother November 30, 2012 at 6:49 pm

Good Point!

Str8Grandmother November 30, 2012 at 7:32 pm

I'll never forget this guy Allen. Remember that guy from Equality Matters who went undercover to that annual youth meeting that the Ruth Institute put on, oh yes Carlos Manzo. I'll never forget Carlos reporting that Allen postulated to the audience that the reason Lesbian relationships fall apart is that when women live together their periods synchronize and there is *just to MUCH PMS-ing* going on and it breaks up their relationships. I about died when I read his theory.

So yeah this guy Allen has a lot of scientific theories alright, can you imagine that, PMS? Anyway I thought these quotes from the masterful Rosenfelt takedown of this clown were pretty good-

"The differences across family types in the adoption and fostering
process cannot be controlled for by applying one dummy variable to all familytypes, as Allen et al. did"

"Allen et al. violated a fundamental rule of causal
order, which is that later characteristics ought not be used to predict earlier events"

"the children raised by unmarried heterosexual couples
appear to be faring worse (with higher rates of grade retention) than children raised by same-sex couples (all of whom were unmarried according to U.S. law), though the difference in grade retention is not significant after socioeconomic controls are applied."

Diogenes_Arktos December 1, 2012 at 9:56 am

The PMS theory relies on the discredited theory that women living together tend to synchronize their periods. As usual, once the Religious Right decides on facts, they never get updated.

JeffreyRO5 December 1, 2012 at 10:13 am

I wish someone would do a study on homophobia and its pernicious effects of sufferers. Homophobics seem to become disconnected from reality, at least part of the time. They become pathological liars, too. It's time serious medical dollars are devoted to finding a cure for this horrible ailment.

Str8Grandmother December 1, 2012 at 3:44 pm

JeffreyRO5, how did you get such a low Discus count? -89? You must have been commenting on right wing websites, LOL! I never notice mine hardly at all, but yours was in red so I looked at it. The highest number of negative votes I think I ever got was on MercatorNet (an Opus Dei site but they don't tell you that you have to figure that out) for one comment on MercatorNet I got 56 negative votes. Hey I was pretty proud of that :) You should comment over there Jeffrey. All comments are moderated but eventually most of them get posted.

JeffreyRO5 December 1, 2012 at 10:08 pm

I guess I never thought about it before, Str8. I didn't know what the number meant, so I kind of ignored it! You're saying that it's the net of likes and dislikes. I spend more time at conservative websites, fighting all the falsehoods and hatred, so it makes sense that I'd have a net negative rating!

Diogenes_Arktos December 5, 2012 at 1:23 am

I'm heartened a bit by Allen. At least he admists (albeit a needle in a haystack) the truth about his paper. Unlike Regnerus, who wasn't quite so honest. Yes, he's on record as saying his research does not support how people are using it – but that doesn't stop people from using it anyway. The Religious Right does not seem to be able to understand that information needs to be updated:(

EdofTennessee March 8, 2014 at 7:46 am

LOL, I ROCK WITH LAUGHTER at the stupidity of BIBLE THUMPING IDIOTS !!!! These ignorant self righteous FRUMPS need to read MATTHEW 7:1-10 before sending anyone to HELL. Perhaps they do not realize what JESUS said about what would happen to those who judge others !!!!
I would not want to be in their shoes on judgement day !!!! I say DEPORT all so-called christian WOMBATS to Iraq and Iran. There the LIONS could discuss their fate over dinner !!! There are not enough LIONS in the world to rid us of the hateful, corrupt and evil, Bible thumping, self righteous, prejudice, bigoted, so-called christian RUMPS !!! I have a challenge for these BOZOS: If you can find a verse in the BIBLE where JESUS CHRIST himself condemns homosexuality, I will believe you; otherwise, I say you are a LIAR !!!EdofTennessee

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