The journal Demography has published a reexamination of a 2010 study that found no significant differences between same-sex and opposite-sex parenting outcomes. William C. Duncan reports:
The journal Demography has just published a very interesting article that reexamines the claims of a 2010 study that suggested (and was widely reported) as showing that children raised by same-sex couples experienced no academic disadvantages. The catch of the earlier study was that it was significantly different from previous studies on same-sex children and their parents since it used a large sample from the Census rather than a small self-selected one which is more typical of this body of research.
As with the Regnerus study, much hinges on who’s included and excluded. Researchers Douglas W. Allen, Catherine Pakaluk, and Joseph Price found a result radically different from that of the initial article:
The 2010 study had excluded children who were not biologically related to the head of household and who were not in the same home for at least five years. This reduced “the sample size by more than one-half.” The 2012 study explains that putting the children who had been in unstable households (lived at the same address less than five years) back into the sample increases the sample “by more than 80 percent.” This fact alone seems important. The new study’s conclusion is that “children being raised by same-sex couples are 35 percent less likely to make normal progress through school.”
Social science won’t settle our moral disagreements, of course. Acknowledging this fact might help both sides read the data with less prejudice and more profit.