Archbishop Nienstedt: Gay marriage ban is not anti-gay
Thursday, June 09, 2011 at 1:05 pm
Archbishop John Nienstedt penned a column on Thursday defending the Catholic Church’s decision to lobby for an amendment that would add a ban on same-sex marriage to the Minnesota Constitution. He said the amendment is not “anti-gay, mean-spirited and prejudicial.” Later in the column he endorses the words of his fellow Catholic, the Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, who says if same-sex marriage is legalized, it could lead to polygamy and incest.
“Regrettably, the media and some secular commentators have chosen to mischaracterize this measure as anti-gay, mean-spirited and prejudicial,” wrote Nienstedt in the Archdiocese newspaper, the Catholic Spirit. “This is not the case or the intent behind the initiative.”
Nienstedt argued that children fare best in families with one mother and one father, an argument that seems to contradict most research on same-sex parenting.
“Pastorally, children flourish best in the context of having both a mother and a father. Every scientific study confirms this reality,” he wrote.
“No research supports the widely held conviction that the gender of parents matters for child well-being,” wrote sociologists Stacey and Timothy Biblarz of the University of Southern California.
“Children being raised by same-gender parents, on most all of the measures that we care about, self-esteem, school performance, social adjustment and so on, seem to be doing just fine and, in most cases, are statistically indistinguishable from kids raised by married moms and dads on these measures,” Biblarz said.
Neinstedt included an excerpt of Archbishop Dolan, stating, “His argumentation is hard to refute.”
Dolan wrote, “If the definition of marriage is continually being altered, could it not in the future be morphed again to include multiple spouses or even family members?”
Dolan’s column was in response to a push by New York legislators and Gov. Andrew Cuoma to pass legislation legalizing same-sex marriage in that state.
Dolan’s comparison of same-sex marriage to incest and polygamy sparked criticism and he defended those criticisms on 60 Minutes, adding, “Where would then the tampering stop? I love my mom, I don’t have the right to marry her. There are certain rights and attractions in life that are very beautiful and noble, but don’t entitle you to marriage.”
Nienstedt and Minnesota’s Catholic bishops created a DVD during the 2010 election to engage Catholics to support a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, a move that sparked protest with the Catholic laity.
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