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Regnerus Scandal: Prominent Sociologist Delivers Devastating Professional Evaluation

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Dr. Andrew Perrin — a cultural and political sociologist — teaches at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

The topmost ranks of the American Sociological Association respect him greatly, as is evidenced by his being a co-author of the Report to the American Sociological Association Council Regarding the 2010 National Research Council Assessment of Doctoral Programs.

Characteristic of his interests is a 2011 paper he co-authored with Katherine McFarland – Social Theory and Public Opinion – which appeared in the Annual Review of Sociology.

Perrin’s voluminous academic credits reflect a rigorous quest for an understanding of what constitutes state-of-the-art methodologies for the field of sociology.

For example, with Jeffrey K. Olick, Perrin translated and edited works by Theodore W. Adorno. The Harvard University Press notes that Olick and Perrin “make a case that these experiments are an important missing link in the ontology and methodology of current social-science survey research.”

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In an e-mail exchange, I interviewed Dr. Perrin about the New Family Structures Study, carried out by Mark Regnerus and now being used as a demonizing weapon against gay people.

Perrin’s professional assessment of Regnerus’s work is devastating. Here is what he says:

“I think the study is so thoroughly flawed, in particular with respect to its categorization of ‘gay’ and ‘lesbian,’ that no conclusions can be drawn with sufficient confidence to report, publicize, or use them.”

I asked Dr. Perrin about Regnerus’s data analyses, some of which were carried out with the assistance of  W. Bradford Wilcox, who, as a Regnerus study funding agency representative, organized the study and collaborated with Regnerus on its design booby-trapped against gays. The analyses of the raw data led to dubious “findings” about gay parents and child sexual victimization. In that regard, Perrin said this about Regnerus and Wilcox:

“They should state publicly that the study does not support the ‘gays are pedophiles’ conclusion.”

I wanted to know specifically what Dr. Perrin thought of Regnerus’s “finding” that 23% of his study’s young adult children of “lesbian mothers” had suffered childhood sexual victimization. This is how he responded:

“The fundamental flaws in data collection and interpretation are sufficiently grave as to make this finding very suspect.”

Regnerus has published claims that no funding agency representatives were involved with designing and carrying out his study. Yet, Regnerus’s chief funder is the anti-gay-rights Witherspoon Institute.

Brad Wilcox was Director of the Witherspoon program that first organized the Regnerus study. Wilcox held the title of Director when he collaborated with Regnerus on study design. Dr. Perrin says this:

“Regnerus’s claim that the funders were not involved in the study design is clearly not true given Wilcox’s status.”

Dr. Perrin further states: “The other important angle on this is that Wilcox’s “academic” work is not particularly well respected and is highly politicized — (Philip Cohen did an excellent critique on his blog a while ago) — so it is not plausible that Regnerus engaged his services for primarily scholarly reasons. Regnerus certainly knew any advice he received from Wilcox would be heavily slanted toward the point of view Witherspoon routinely pursues.”

(One of Dr. Cohen’s critiques of Wilcox is titled Distorting Data on Divorce at the National Marriage Project. Wilcox is Director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia).

I also asked Dr. Perrin whether Regnerus could be considered in violation of the American Sociological Association’s Code of Ethics.  

A specific example I gave was that of Regnerus having absurdly told The American Independent that Witherspoon’s Brad Wilcox “did not represent Witherspoon” when; 1) Wilcox was Director of the Witherspoon program that organized the study, and when 2) Wilcox, as Director of that Witherspoon program organizing the study, collaborated with Regnerus on the study design.

Dr. Perrin said: “If in fact he is lying about the relationship, then my understanding is that he would be in violation of the ASA code of ethics.”

Commenting on his own sociology blog, Dr. Philip N. Cohen said:

“Yes, it seems clear that Regnerus lied, and that Wilcox acted unethically by acting as a reviewer, program officer and consultant.”

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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Bombshell WSJ Report: Trump Pressured DOJ Attorneys to Sue States in the Supreme Court to Overturn Election

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President Donald Trump pressured U.S. Department of Justice attorneys, possibly including former Attorney General Bill Barr, to file a lawsuit against four U.S. states in the U.S. Supreme Court, in one of his final attempts to overturn the election before leaving office.

The Wall Street Journal reports late Saturday night that effort “failed due to pushback from his own appointees in the Justice Department, who refused to file what they viewed as a legally baseless lawsuit in the Supreme Court.”

The Journal also confirms Friday night’s New York Times reporting that Trump attempted to remove his own acting Attorney General, Jeffrey Rosen, after Barr left the DOJ just two days before Christmas.

According to the Journal, “senior department officials threatened to resign en masse should Mr. Trump fire then-acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, according to several people familiar with the discussions.”

“Senior department officials, including Mr. Rosen, former Attorney General William Barr and former acting Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall refused to file the Supreme Court case, concluding that there was no basis to challenge the election outcome and that the federal government had no legal interest in whether Mr. Trump or Mr. Biden won the presidency,” the paper adds.

The paper does not specify the exact timeframe of when Trump tried to force DOJ to file the lawsuit, but based on its report it had to have been after December 11, when the Supreme Court dismissed what most election law attorneys considered a frivolous suit filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, along with other Republican state attorneys general.

This is a breaking news and developing story. 

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'DANGEROUS FOOLS'

GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy Says “Everyone” Is to Blame for Capitol Riots

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While Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California has previously said that he thinks former President Donald Trump bears some responsibility for the January 6 coup attempt in which his supporters ransacked the Capitol to overturn the election that he and Republicans baselessly claimed was stolen, McCarthy added in a Thursday interview, “I also think everybody across this country has some responsibility [for the coup attempt.]”

McCarthy then said that anti-Trump Democrats, rude social media users, unprepared law enforcement authorities were all responsible too, even though Trump literally told his followers on the morning of January 6 to march to the Capitol and fight to stop legislators from approving the election victory of now-President Joe Biden. 

“I think this is what we have to get to the bottom of, and when you start talking about who has responsibilities,” McCarthy said. “I think there’s going to be a lot more questions, a lot more answers we have to have in the coming future.”

It’s especially telling that his Senate counterpart, now-Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has directly blamed Trump for the riots.

“The mob was fed lies,” McConnell said Wednesday. “They were provoked by the president and other powerful people, and they tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding of the first branch of the federal government which they did not like.” 

After months of making baseless claims that a national conspiracy of widespread voter fraud stole the election from him, a claim laughed out of courts 60 times over for lack of evidence by judges that Trump himself appointed, Trump held a “Stop the Steal” rally on the morning of January 6 in which he said, that he won the election “by a landslide” and encouraged his followers to “stop the steal” by going to the Capitol. If people don’t “fight like hell,” Trump said, “you’re not going to have a country anymore.”

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'ETHICS PROGRAM HAS BEEN RAZED TO THE GROUND'

Russia Explodes with Protests Against Putin Poisoning and Jailing His Biggest Opponent

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Russian citizens in 38 cities are protesting the country’s sham elections in which Russian President Vladimir Putin has felt so threatened by the opposition candidate, anti-corruption activist Alexei Navalny, that he has had him imprisoned and poisoned in an attempt to silence his voice and kill his movement.

The Russian presidential elections are a complete sham used to legitimate Putin’s power. In the last election, Putin “won” nearly 77 percent of the vote amid claims of ballot stuffing, the Kremlin choosing which candidates get to run, police arresting any anti-Putin protesters and pro-Putin candidates receiving far more financial backing than his opponents.

Navalny himself, a popular anti-corruption campaigner who is one of Putin’s most outspoken critics, according to The Week, has previously been barred from running due to a trumped-up and controversial fraud conviction allegedly masterminded by Putin. In August 2020, Navalny was poisoned with a nerve agent called Novichok and survived his hospitalization. Navalny has said he got a Russian federal agent to reveal how he was poisoned, though the Kremlin has denied any involvement.

Three days ago, Navalny was jailed once more for allegedly violating his parole. He now inhabits Matrosskaya Tishina or Sailor’s Silence, a jail in Moscow’s north-east region that has housed high-ranking prisoners that authorities have wanted to cut off from the outside world since the Soviet era, according to Reuters. The jail is notoriously deadly.

Russian citizens across the nation have seemingly had enough and have begun protesting his imprisonment, as the videos below attest. Hundreds have been arrested as police fight to maintain control.

The U.S. Embassy in Russia has weighed in by saying, “We’re watching reports of protests in 38 Russian cities, arrests of 350+ peaceful protesters and journalists. The U.S. supports the right of all people to peaceful protest, freedom of expression. Steps being taken by Russian authorities are suppressing those rights.”

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