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U. Of Texas Stonewalling On Regnerus Inquiry; TNCRM Reporter Sends Complaint E-Mail

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The e-mail below was sent by The New Civil Rights Movement’s Scott Rose to the University of Texas, Austin’s Research Integrity Officer Robert Peterson, as a complaint about the university’s apparent stonewalling on an inquiry into Sociological Malpractice allegedly committed, in an ongoing way, by UTA Associate Professor Mark Regnerus. A previously-published TNCRM introduction to the matter may be read here.

 July 6, 2012

Dr. Peterson:

Although UTA attorney Jeffery Graves was kind enough to inform me that I should not send UTA any more information about the Regnerus matter unless UTA requests it, I am writing to you so as to have a public record of things that you have been told about the Regnerus study.

As a baseline matter, there is nothing really to discuss, as Regnerus did not make a valid sociological comparison and therefore, his entire study is invalid. In case somebody doesn’t understand this; it would be valid to compare young adult children of broken heterosexual homes with young adult children of broken homosexual homes, but it is not a sociologically valid comparison to compare broken homes with unbroken homes, as Regnerus did.

In her Huffington Post article, co-authored with additional UTA Sociologists, Debra Umberson said this:

Mark Regnerus claims to have produced the first rigorous scientific evidence showing that same sex families harm children. 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.”

Umberson did not specify that when she references Regnerus’s “irresponsible and reckless representation of social science research,” what she means is that Regnerus DID NOT MAKE ANY VALID SOCIOLOGICAL COMPARISON.

I put that in all caps, because frankly, I am sick of this ridiculous game where Regnerus violated the most basic rules of his own field, other professors at the same school have complained that he is negatively impacting their department’s and school’s reputations, but nonetheless, school administration, which is busy promoting Regnerus’s study, is acting as though one had still to investigate whether Regnerus had made a sociologically valid comparison.

Regnerus appears purposely to be clouding public understanding of the basics of Sociology when he insists on talking about the superiority of his random sampling to the convenience and snowball samplings of past studies on gay parenting. Sampling method is irrelevant if a sociologist makes an invalid comparison with his data.

Furthermore, Regnerus appears to be being highly disingenuous and untruthful when he alleges that at the beginning of the study, they thought they might be able to connect with and to survey an adequate number of authentic gay parents, but that they eventually found that they could not, and so they went ahead and made the invalid comparison anyway. Firstly, why is Regnerus trying to play people for fools, as though all of his blah-blah-blah meant that his study would magically become valid because of the blah-blah-blah, even though he had not made a sociologically valid comparison? This is exactly what UTA Sociologist Debra Umberson is referring to when she says:”I am disturbed by his irresponsible and reckless representation of social science research.”

Why is Regnerus doing that, and why is school administration allowing him to do that, given that its own additional Sociology professors say that this is Sociological Malpractice? The study Loren Marks simultaneously published with Regnerus’s study is in many respects a give-away as to the underhanded dirty tricks that Regnerus’s funders are playing. The Marks study is all about how a random sampling is superior to the convenience and snowball samplings of past studies on gay parents; but nowhere does it mention that *no* sampling method is relevant to research results if an invalid comparison was made with the data collected. Furthermore, Marks’s June, 2012 study was published under exactly the same title in October, 2011, is essentially the same as that past version of the study, though with a few tables thrown in, and it has EXACTLY the same conclusion. Now who publishes research as though it were a brand new study and trumpets it all around as some new discovery, when it has exactly the same conclusion as the previously-published study?

PILOT STUDIES — Any reputable surveying company, including the one Regnerus used, Knowledge Networks, will tell you that if you are going to spend a great deal of money attempting to survey a small population, you must first do a PILOT STUDY that will give you a good idea of how many of your intended target demographic you will be able to reach with the larger study. Knowledge Networks, or any similar company, will advise people looking to spend lots of money to reach a small population to first do a PILOT STUDY because a company like KN does not want to damage its professional reputation by promising results that it is not sure of being able to produce, leaving a client very dissatisfied. “They promised me the moon but delivered nothing!” Knowledge Networks would not operate towards that outcome, because it would severely damage their brand.  And, to be sure, Regnerus wanted to study young adult children of gay parents, but Knowledge Networks did not find an adequate sampling of them for him to survey. Knowledge Networks is not a used car dealership, but Regnerus is presenting his dealings with them, as though they allowed him to spend a huge amount of money to reach a small population which they knew he would not be able to reach with their methods and his budget.

Of course, all of those details are extraneous to the fact that Regnerus made no valid sociological comparison with his study. And that is why four UTA Sociologists signed a published article that says: “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.”

So far from UTA, I have experienced: 1) probable dissembling about a documentation request being already in progress, before I was told that I would have to file an Open Record Act request. If, as David Ochsner told me, the documentation was already being assembled, why was it not ready as soon as I filed the Open Record Act request? 2) UTA’s Ochsner, who has been placing advertorials for the Regnerus study, sent attack e-mails to my publication containing unwarranted smears against me, and attempts to discredit my reporting and my person, and to intimidate us out of further reporting on the Regnerus matter as though we have never seen such tactics attempted before. 3) UTA attorney Graves told me — “Don’t call us, we’ll call you!” — with any further info related to Regnerus; so my question for you now is, in working on the inquiry, had you ever realized what I told you above about pilot studies, and if so, can you produce any documentation for your having explored that question with respect to Regnerus? That no pilot study apparently was done appears to speak to the whole study being carried out either with incompetence or with evil motives. If a pilot study was done, where is the evidence of that, what was learned through the pilot study and what decisions were based on it and how were those decisions reached?

Nobody needs to investigate anything to understand that Regnerus’s study does not make a sociologically valid comparison, but anybody truly interested in understanding his relationship with his funders would be examining such issues as whether he did a pilot study. UT has made statements of confidence in Regnerus’s independence of his funders, which tells me that UTA is not serious about an inquiry.

Furthermore, that Regnerus would accept funding from the hateful people who got him his planning grant and his study funding says something about his character, because even *if* those funders gave Regnerus true independence, he was responsible for understanding the wicked uses they would make of his study. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which had success suing the Ku Klux Klan, has a 2012 Intelligence Report on the National Organization for Marriage titled: “National Organization for Marriage Continues to Spread Lies About Gays.” The SPLC report centers on NOM’s lies conflating homosexuals with pedophiles, a known falsehood. It is now using Regnerus’s study in similar ways; to say that homosexuals are dangerous to children. And very interestingly along those lines, it is using supposed sexual abuse information from the study to further claim that homosexuals equate to pedophiles. As happens, in the study, most parents incorrectly labeled as gay were from failed heterosexual marriages, one spouse of which appears to have perhaps experimented with same-sex intimacy, perhaps to have been bi-sexual — Regnerus made no attempt to clarify the situations. However that may be, when parents divorce, generally each of them continues playing a role in their children’s lives. Regnerus asked those children of broken homes questions pertaining to whether they had ever experienced sex abuse, but he did not research *which* parent or other adult in or out of the home had committed the abuse; it could as easily have been a heterosexual adult as a homosexual one, but Regnerus is pinning the blame for the abuse on the (supposed) gay parent only. Doing that violates the core principle of “innocent until proven guilty.”

NOM, already notorious for its dishonorable dancing around campaign finance laws, clearly is the funding driver behind the Regnerus study. I say that because; 1) NOM head Robert George has authority within both The Witherspoon Institute and The Bradley Foundation, which both funded Regnerus; 2) The Bradley Foundation funds The Witherspoon Institute; and 3) Witherspoon Institute President Luis Tellez is a NOM board member.

The Regnerus study is defamatory of gays as a class of people, is being aggressively used as a political and social weapon against gays, and in particular is being used in deliberately cruel ways against gays by Regnerus’s funders who have a long, long history of caring more about their political gay-bashing than about child welfare.

NOM has held anti-gay-rights rallies where its speakers yell through megaphones that homosexuals are “worthy to death.” Recently in Texas, Mary Kristene Chapa, 18 and Mollie Olgin, 19, a lesbian couple were shot point-blank in their heads while relaxing together in a public park.

But UTA thinks there is no urgent problem, is dragging its feet before deciding whether Regnerus’s study makes a valid sociological comparison, and on top of that, is promoting the invalid study as a shining example of what the school can do.

Scott Rose

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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News

Rick Scott’s IVF Pledge Using His Own Grandkids Slammed as ‘Lie’ by Democrats

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U.S. Senator Rick Scott (R-FL), running for re-election and running to replace Mitch McConnell as Senate Republican Leader, has put out a new seven-figure ad that uses his children and grandchildren as he pledges to protect in-vitro fertilization (IVF), but Democrats in the Sunshine State are accusing him of lying.

“My wife Ann and I have two daughters and seven perfect grandkids. Each is a precious gift from God. But sometimes families need help. Millions of babies have come into this world from IVF, in-vitro fertilization. In fact, our youngest daughter’s receiving an IVF treatment right now, hoping to expand her family. She and I both agree IVF must be protected. For our family, for every family,” Senator Scott says in his latest ad he’s also posted to social media (below).

Democrats are calling Sen. Scott out for what they say is a lie.

On Thursday, Scott voted against the Right to IVF Act, Democratic legislation sponsored by U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), who blasted him on Friday: “You literally voted against my bill to protect IVF yesterday.”

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On Thursday, Senate Republicans blocked Duckworth’s bill in a 48-47 vote. Only two Republicans, Senators Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins voted with Democrats for the legislation.

“Rick Scott voted against protecting access to IVF — a miracle treatment that has allowed millions of Americans to start families,” Florida Democratic Party Chair Nikki Fried said in a statement that also includes his voting record and statements on IVF and other issues including abortion. “Scott has made it crystal clear that he will stop at nothing to rip away personal decisions from women and their families — and it will cost him his Senate seat.”

“Scott previously blocked legislation to protect IVF treatment that was introduced in response to the Alabama Supreme Court ruling that stored embryos have the same legal protections as children,” the Florida Democratic Party statement also reads. “Scott is now trying to cover up his anti-IVF record by touting an ’empty, symbolic’ resolution that would do nothing to actually protect IVF and spending millions to lie to Floridians about his phony support for IVF.”

The Florida Phoenix last week reported, “Scott, a Republican, will likely face former South Florida Democratic U.S. Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell in November. Both candidates must get through their respective party primary elections in August.”

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“Mucarsel-Powell has been relentless in criticizing Scott’s record on abortion rights. Last week, her campaign issued a statement noting that the Scott had received an “A+” rating from Students for Life Action, an anti-abortion organization that opposes IVF.”

Political consultant Dana Houle observed, “If you’re running ads trying to convince people you’re not opposed to IVF (which in effect he is, since he voted against protecting it) you’re in pretty big trouble. It’s crazy to think that it’s likely that one of the decisive events of the 2024 campaign occurred in Alabama.”

That also appears to be the position of Florida Democratic Party executive director Phillip Jerez, who responded to Scott’s ad by asking, “Didn’t you vote AGAINST the IVF bill in the Senate yesterday?”

“Rick Scott is now putting up this 7-figure ad because he needs to work OVERTIME to lie to Floridians,” Jerez added. “He’s never won an election by more than 1% and never in a presidential year. Rick Scott is in trouble.”

David Simon, the well-known author, journalist, and screenwriter known for his colorful language, also responded to Sen. Scott: “Shitheel, you voted against the bill to protect IVF and then ran out to tweet this horseshit the next day. Even by our American standards of grifting, empty political hacks, this is wondrous.”

See Sen. Scott’s ad above or at this link.

RELATED: GOP Will Ban IVF if Trump Wins After Southern Baptists Condemnation: Expert

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Right Wing Justices Rule Ban on Gun Accessory Used in Major Mass Shooting Unlawful

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In a 6-3 decision along partisan lines, right-wing justices on the U.S. Supreme Court ruled a bump stock, an accessory used in America’s most-deadly mass shooting, that effectively turns an AR-15 into a machine gun, cannot be regulated under current law. Justice Clarence Thomas authored the majority opinion. The device is so dramatically lethal pro-gun President Donald Trump banned it in 2018.

“The Supreme Court just effectively legalized machine guns,” is the headline of Ian Millhiser’s report at Vox. He says Friday’s ruling “effectively legalizes civilian ownership of automatic weapons.”

“Bump stocks increase an AR-15’s rate of fire from 180 rounds per minute to 400-800 rounds per minute,” explained Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, in response to Friday’s Supreme Court ruling. “They inflict mass carnage by allowing the gunman to shoot automatically, without pulling the trigger. Yet the Supreme Court declares that they do not create a ‘machinegun.’ ”

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Legal and gun experts might delve in to the mechanics of what makes a gun a gun, what makes a machine gun a machine gun, add in the conservative justices’ “textualism” and “originalism” theories where words are supposed to only mean what they meant when the Constitution, or, in this case, a law was written, but as Stern and Aaron Fritschner, the deputy chief of staff for a Democratic U.S. Congressman discussed (social media post below), the Supreme Court appears, they say, to have interpreted the plain language of words differently than their plain meaning to reach the conclusion they did:

Indeed, as senior advisor to the nonprofit organization Court Accountability and self-described “lapsed lawyer” Mike Sacks noted, in her dissent, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor joined by liberal Justices Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson, wrote: “When I see a bird that walks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.”

Sacks adds, “Sotomayor calls out *every* *single* *one* *of* *her* *Republican* *colleagues* for abandoning their textualist ‘principle,’ in a paragraph that concludes, “Today, the majority forgets that principle and substitutes its own view of what constitutes a “machinegun” for Congress’s.”

Berkeley professor of public policy and former Cabinet Secretary Robert Reich wrote, “Koch-backed groups called on SCOTUS to overturn the federal bump stock ban. Clarence Thomas secretly attended Koch fundraising events, but of course didn’t recuse from this case — he wrote the majority opinion. Our nation’s highest court is beyond compromised.”

NBC News reported in December of 2018 that Donald Trump “had urged the federal government to ban bump stocks this past spring following a deadly Valentine’s Day shooting at a high school in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead. However, the device gained notoriety when a lone gunman killed 59 people and injured at least 527 others attending a country music festival in Las Vegas in October 2017. The shooter, Stephen Paddock, had 22 semi-automatic rifles and 14 of them were equipped with bump stocks. They allowed him to fire the rifles continuously with a single pull of the trigger, resulting in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.”

That shooting to this day remains the deadliest mass shooting in modern day history.

See the social media posts above or at this link.

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OPINION

‘Pyongyang in the Rotunda’: GOP Red Carpet Rollout for Trump’s DC Trip Likened to North Korea

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Donald Trump’s first return to Capitol Hill since the violent and deadly January 6, 2021 insurrection he fomented elicited responses of celebratory embrace, near-coronation, and a whitewashing of history from House and Senate Republicans and some of the mainstream media. That has critics sounding the alarm, likening their remarks to those of the subjects of authoritarian dictators like North Korea’s Kim Jong Un.

Trump is the Republican Party’s presumptive 2024 presidential nominee, a convicted felon awaiting sentencing who remains criminally indicted and out on bail in three other jurisdictions, an adjudicated rapist and fraudster who has been credibly accused by at least 18 to 23 or more women of varying degrees of sexual misconduct including harassment, assault, and rape, who allegedly had sex with a Playboy Bunny, and a porn star, the latter just four months after his third and current wife had given birth to their four-month old son.

He is a one-term, twice impeached ex-president who made over 30,000 “false or misleading claims” during his four years in the Oval Office, whose “inept and insufficient” response was in part responsible for about 40% of the COVID-19 pandemic deaths in the U.S., according to a February 2021 study that deemed them preventable.

And as of today, Donald Trump is 78 years old, and the subject of a New Yorker column published Friday alleging “age-related diminishment of a candidate.”

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The ex-president met with House Republicans Thursday morning at the same restaurant where a pipe bomb was found outside on January 6, 2021. It’s just a seven-minute walk from the halls of Congress, where many of those same lawmakers who were jovially dining with and cheering on Trump, had huddled, hunkered-down, and fled through that centuries-old symbol of American democracy, afraid for their lives as supporters of the then-Commander-in-Chief – some of whom have said in court documents they believed were acting under his instructions – attacked the U.S. Capitol building and police, used the American flag as a spear, defecated on the walls, broke windows, damaged, destroyed, and stole U.S. Government property, hunted for the Democratic Speaker of the House, calling her by name, and hunted for the Republican Vice President, chanting their threats to “hang Mike Pence,” in a coordinated effort to help Trump overturn the results of the 2020 election he had lost by over seven million votes, and 74 Electoral College votes.

None of that matters now to the people’s elected representatives of the Republican Party in the House and Senate.

U.S. Senator, venture capitalist, and former “Never Trumper,” J.D. Vance (R-OH) on Thursday, walking in Washington, D.C. after he and nearly all of the Republican Senators met with Donald Trump and gave him a 30-second standing ovation, told reporters the GOP has absolved Trump of guilt and responsibility for the deadly insurrection three years ago.

“Well look, I think no real Republican with any credibility in the party is still blaming him for January the 6th. Frankly, some of his critics were in the room (Thursday) and were supportive and are supportive. So I think it’s a good thing and the Republican Party’s in a good place.”

After House Republicans had breakfast with Trump, Speaker of the House Mike Johnson, criticized for apparently not remembering Congress is a co-equal brach of the U.S. government and Donald Trump is no longer a leader of any branch of government, glowingly bragged the ex-president “said I’m doing a very good job.”

Aaron Fritschner, deputy chief of staff for a Democratic U.S. Congressman, blasted Senate Republicans after they met with Trump, saying they “just rolled the red carpet out and welcomed him back with smiles and handshakes.”

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He posted a photo of Trump warmly shaking hands with Senate Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who reportedly had not spoken to Trump since before the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S Capitol, and on that day declared him “practically and morally responsible” for the insurrection.

Journalist and Public Notice founder Aaron Rupar posted a “supercut” of Republicans responding to Trump’s visit, also likening their embrace to how subjects speak of dictators.

Award-winning Talking Points Memo publisher Josh Marshall praised Rupar and blasted Republicans: “For all the ‘triumphant returns’ and ‘Trumps flexes’ and all the rest I don’t think anyone beside @atrupar really captured it. This was Pyongyang in the Rotunda. The maniacal clapping in unison, MTG almost breaking down in tears cuz Trump smiled at her. Total North Korea vibe.”

Critics are slamming not only House and Senate Republicans, but the mainstream media’s coverage, especially a social media post by the Associated Press, which declared Trump’s return to D.C. “triumphant,” a term often reserved for a conquering or undefeated hero.

Veteran journalist and D.C. Bureau Chief of Mother Jones, David Corn, co-author of the 2018 book, “Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump,” criticized the AP’s post, saying: “Sounds like a North Korean report.”

Award-winning journalist Steve Silberman called the AP’s post, “an instant candidate for the Museum of American Fascism.”

Watch the videos above or at this link.

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