I don't know if it was our shared fear of flying to New York tomorrow, or the effect of the depressingly rare bout of sunshine we got this afternoon, but me and my sister, Gemma, had an intelligent conversation. It was rather insightful, so far as it affirmed my belief that I'm right about a lot of things because other people are, quite simply, ignorant. Yes I know, my arrogance would seem to know no bounds!
I find the worst kind of ignorant people are those who freely admit they are ignorant and don't care. They refuse to be educated on an issue because they have their beliefs. They mistake their right to have an opinion/belief as a right to be ignorant. That is unfortunately the category in which my sister falls. Such people can easily be identified simply by being asked to explain why they think something. Often the answer will be "because I do." Or, depending on context, "because it is."
For example, let's take this controversial conversation we were having in the garden this afternoon. Gay adoption. Or, more precisely, gay parenting. It's a sensitive issue, one that evokes the capriciousness of even the most steadfast homo-friendly liberal. She believes, as many do, that a child needs a mother and a father figure. Simple as that. It's worked for eons, why question it? Well, mainly because slavery worked for eons too - but not for everyone. Much the same way gay people are now actually seen as "people", and therefore, a lot of them naturally have a desire to be parents. The nuclear family works for some, not for others. Seeing as their, ahem, plumbing, doesn't allow for such a so-called miracle they are forced to turn to science.
I digress. The point is not that gay people want to be parents or that they can be. The point is, why shouldn't they be? In other words, and this is the question I posed to my ignorant sister, why is having same sex parents wrong? And thereon she revealed her ignorance, announcing, "because it is." Well I'm glad that's cleared up.
I'm a strong believer in basing an opinion on fact. Sometimes, in fact, a lot of the time, facts are presented by both sides of an argument. It is therefore your responsibility to choose which facts and figures you think are better. Usually better results can be identified as unbiased and not having some secret agenda. Particularly with this topic a religious undertone. Allow me to illustrate.
The Family Research Council (sounds posh, doesn't it?), points out that there is a correlation between homosexuality and pedophilia. They wrote a lovely essay about how us gay predators fancy young boys. I could also point out of course there is a correlation between rising global temperatures and the falling number of pirates on the planet. Of course if you were the kind of person foolish/stupid enough to believe that the FRC is anything but a fundamentalist Christian right wing group out to cast aspersions on any and every "practicing" homosexual, you probably wouldn't have read this far down my rant. Similarly it would be wrong of me to take statistics conjured up by a pro-gay group as they would probably be twisted, just in a less malicious way. So the solution to finding what I consider best opinions is to turn to non-biased groups solely concerned with studying the psychological and physiological effects of having gay parents on children.
One such group would be the famous American Psychological Association. They have much influence in the world of psychology. They state, and I quote,
"research has shown that the adjustment, development, and psychological well-being of children is unrelated to parental sexual orientation and that the children of lesbian and gay parents are as likely as those of heterosexual parents to flourish."
One concern I often hear raised is that having gay parents will encourage sexual bias (in other words, gay parents raise gay children). I've made the point before, but I'll make it again - I am living testimony to the fact that straight parents don't raise straight children. Why on Earth would gay parents raise gay children?
In fact the only argument I have seen raised that even closely resembles reason and logic is the scientific fact that children raised in 1 parent families do not fare as well as in families with a mother and a father. The fundamental flaw with this however, as you may have worked out, is that having two parents with ONE gender does not equal one parent. There is no evidence to suggest that lack of both gender roles is equal to having one parent.
So, if you're one of those intransigent people who look at the facts but continue to hold an opposite point of view based upon nothing but your personal convictions, at least spare a thought for the poor children likeminded individuals like yourself sentence to foster care. The ability of people such as yourself to sedulously avoid the ineluctable truth on such a vast range of issues, from the existence of God to gay parenting, never ceases to amaze me.