Two professors call for retraction of the Regnerus article and actions against the editor of the Social Science Research Journal
I asked Dr. Michael Schwartz, Chair of the Sociology Department of Stony Brook University, if he would call for retraction of the Regnerus study, which was published in Elsevier’s journal Social Science Research on June 10, 2012.
In an e-mail response, Dr. Schwartz told me:
“I believe that the journal should retract its acceptance of the article and will sign a collective appeal to Elsevier. For me, the retraction is needed primarily because the review process was compromised in several critical ways, and that therefore publication as a peer-reviewed publication was and is inappropriate.”
In addition, I have now read and analyzed the article myself, and also read some of the critical (and supportive) commentaries on it. It seems clear to me that if the article had been properly reviewed, that a whole menu of flaws in the research, in the analysis, and in the interpretation of evidence would make the article unpublishable.
In addition to the many flaws you point to in your commentary, one that I think is among the most salient is failing to report the evidence for children whose biological parents who did not live together until the child was 18, but who did not have gay affairs (that their children knew about).
Also, I think that actions of the editor, James Wright–including the review process, the publication of the article with invited commentaries from collaborators, the subsequent failure to give space to legitimate criticisms of the article, and other editorial misconduct–should be professionally sanctioned. In addressing Elsevier, I think it would be appropriate to demand that they replace Wright with a new editor who will not violate the norms and values of scholarly publication.”
Dr. Kenneth Sherrill is a Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Hunter College, also weighed in on the controversial article. He told me:
The Publisher and the Editorial Board should be called upon to remove the editor of the journal. He has acted with what seems to me to be extraordinary irresponsibility and dereliction of duty. They should make a public statement of their action and they should publish that statement along with their rationale.” Dr. Sherrill also says: “Most importantly, the journal should publish a special issue on the theory and method of the Regnerus study. The journal has a professional responsibility to make the critiques public.
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.
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