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.
Â July 6, 2012
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. Â 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,Â 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.
New York City-based novelist and freelance writerÂ Scott Roseâ€™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 â€œMr. David Cooperâ€™s Happy Suicideâ€ is about aÂ New York City advertising executive assigned to aÂ condom account.
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‘Scared to Death’: Trump’s Prison Panic Admission Means He Knows He’s Doomed Says Legal Expert
Reacting to a report that Donald Trump has been quizzing his attorneys about what type of prison he likely will be sent to, former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner stated that is not only an indication that he knows he’s going to be convicted but also an admission of guilt.
Speaking with MSNBC host Jonathan Capehart, the attorney was asked about a recent Rolling Stone report about Trump’s prison panic.
As Rolling Stone reported, Trump asked if he’s “be sent to a ‘club fed’ style prison — a place that’s relatively comfortable, as far these things go — or a ‘bad’ prison? Would he serve out a sentence in a plush home confinement? Would government officials try to strip him of his lifetime Secret Service protections? What would they make him wear, if his enemies actually did ever get him in a cell — an unprecedented set of consequences for a former leader of the free world.”
According to the attorney, Trump is revealing himself by asking for so many details.
“What does this tell you about Trump’s mindset?” host Capehart asked.
“It tells me he is scared to death” Kirschner quickly answered. “It tells me he has overwhelming consciousness of guilt because he knows what he did wrong and he knows he is about to be held accountable for his crimes. So it is not surprising that he is obsessing.”
“If he was confident that he would be completely exonerated, would he have to obsess about what his future time in prison might look like?” he suggested. “I think the last refuge for Donald Trump can be seen in a recent post where he urged the Republicans to defund essentially the prosecutions against him. which, to this prosecutor, Jonathan, smells a lot like an attempt to obstruct justice.”
Watch below or at the link.
Image via Shutterstock
‘Vulgar and Lewd’: Trump Judge Cites Extremist Group to Allow Drag Show Ban
A federal judge in Texas known for a ruling that attempted to ban a widely-used abortion drug is citing an extremist anti-LGBTQ group in his ruling allowing a ban on drag shows to stay in place.
U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a former attorney for an anti-LGBTQ conservative Christian legal organization, and a member of the Federalist Society, in his 26-page ruling dated Thursday cited the “About” page of Gays Against Groomers to claim, “it’s unclear how drag shows unmistakably communicate advocacy for LGBT rights.”
Judge Kacsmaryk, appointed by Donald Trump twice before finally assuming office in 2019, suggests the First Amendment does not provide for freedom of expression for drag shows, calls drag “sexualized conduct,” and says it is “more regulable” because “children are in the audience.”
Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern adds, “Kacsmaryk’s conclusion that drag is probably NOT protected by the First Amendment conflicts with decisions from Texas, Florida, Tennessee, and Montana which held that drag is constitutionally protected expression. It also bristles with undisguised hostility toward LGBTQ people.”
Calling the judge “a proud Christian nationalist who flatly refuses to apply binding Supreme Court precedent when it conflicts with his extremist far-right beliefs,” Stern at Slate writes that Kacsmaryk ruled drag “may be outlawed to protect ‘the sexual exploitation and abuse of children.’ In short, he concluded that drag fails to convey a message, while explaining all the reasons why he’s offended by the message it conveys.”
Stern does not let Kacsmaryk off the hook there.
“From almost any other judge, the ruling in Spectrum WT v. Wendler would be a shocking rejection of basic free speech principles; from Kacsmaryk, it’s par for the course. This is, after all, the judge who sought to ban medication abortion nationwide, restricted minors’ access to birth control, seize control over border policy to exclude asylum-seekers, and flouted recent precedent protecting LGBTQ+ equality,” Stern says.
“He is also poised to bankrupt Planned Parenthood by compelling them to pay a $1.8 billion penalty on truly ludicrous grounds. And he is not the only Trump-appointed judge substituting his reactionary beliefs for legal analysis. We have reached a point where these lawless decisions are not only predictable but inevitable, and they show no sign of stopping: Their authors are still just settling into a decadeslong service in the federal judiciary.”
West Texas A&M University President Walter V. Wendler penned the letter that sparked the lawsuit.
Titled, “A Harmless Drag Show? No Such Thing,” Wendler wrote: “I believe every human being is created in the image of God and, therefore, a person of dignity. Being created in God’s image is the basis of Natural Law. James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, prisoners of the culture of their time as are we, declared the Creator’s origin as the foundational fiber in the fabric of our nation as they breathed life into it. Does a drag show preserve a single thread of human dignity? I think not.”
Journalist Chris Geidner concludes, “It’s an extremely biased ruling by a judge who has established that he does not care about being overturned — even by the most conservative appeals court in the nation.”
Gaetz Praises GOP Congressman Who Echoes His Call for Change ‘Through Force’
U.S. Congressman Matt Gaetz (R-FL). largely seen as pushing Speaker Kevin McCarthy‘s Republican-majority House of Representatives toward shutting down the federal government, is praising and promoting remarks made by a freshman GOP lawmaker that appear to suggest the use of violence. U.S. Rep. Eli Crane‘s comments, posted Friday (below), call for change “through force,” remarks echoing Congressman Gaetz’s recent comments which were denounced by an expert on authoritarianism as fascistic.
“The only way we’re going to see meaningful change in this town is through force,” wrote Congressman Crane, Republican of Arizona atop a three-minute video in which he frames what is now an almost guaranteed government shutdown as a “spending fight.” In his video he says, “the only way you’re gonna get any change in this town is through force.” Gaetz in August had said, “we know that only through force do we make any change in a corrupt town like Washington, D.C.”
Congressman Crane is a former Navy SEAL. He has promoted the false “Big Lie” conspiracy theory that there was massive fraud in the election President Joe Biden won, and called “on the state legislature to decertify the 2020 election.” He is one of six House Republicans who voted against McCarthy’s speakership all 15 times in January.
“Congressman Eli Crane is a fountainhead of political courage,” said Rep. Gaetz Friday afternoon. “He holds the line.”
Crane recently came under fire for calling Black people “colored,” during debate on his legislation that would force the U.S. Armed Forces to not use any diversity requirements in its hiring practices.
Just days before he won his House seat last year, The Washington Post reported Crane had urged an “audience to look up an antisemitic sermon at a recent campaign stop.”
“Crane said that he was motivated to run because of ‘radical ideologies that are destroying this country’ and that he was most concerned about ‘Cultural Marxism,’ which the Southern Poverty Law Center has described as an antisemitic baseless claim gaining traction on the American right.”
“He encouraged the audience to watch a speech by a right-wing pastor who blamed cultural change on a group of German Jewish philosophers and condemned Barack Obama for having a ‘homosexual agenda.'”
“If we don’t wake up,” Crane said, according to the Post, “if we don’t study what they’re doing, and if we don’t put people in influential positions that understand what this war is all about, what they’re trying to do and have and have the courage to call it out, we’re going to lose this country.”
In August, while standing next to Donald Trump at a campaign rally, Congressman Gaetz said, “Mr. President, I cannot stand these people that are destroying our country. They are opening our borders. They are weaponizing our federal law enforcement against patriotic Americans who love this nation as we should.”
“But we know that only through force do we make any change in a corrupt town like Washington, D.C. And so to all my friends here in Iowa, when you see them come for this man, know that they are coming for our movement and they are coming for all of us.”
At the time, Raw Story reported, “historian and author Ruth Ben-Ghiat called Gaetz comments alarming.”
“What he is saying is that they are not going to have change through elections or through legislation or through reform. They are going to have change through violence,” she warned.
“And that’s how fascists talk,” Ben-Ghiat added. “So, even if Trump is out of the picture, these are people who have adopted methods very familiar to me as a historian of fascism, that violence and corruption and lying that’s what the party is today.”
Image via Shutterstock
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