Pediatrics Group: Marriage Equality Is Good for Kids

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
March 21 2013 11:08 AM

Pediatrics Group Says Not Allowing Same-Sex Couples to Marry Is Bad for Children

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"Children who are raised by married parents benefit from the social and legal status that civil marriage conveys to their parents," says the academy.

Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Some may doubt the social science research (here’s looking at you, George Will) but the people who spend their days watching over the health of children say marriage equality is good for kids. And beyond that, not allowing same-sex couples to marry is harmful for children. The American Academy of Pediatrics, the country’s most influential pediatricians group, endorsed marriage equality Thursday, saying that children benefit from a two-parent household regardless of the sexual orientation or the gender of their parents, reports the Associated Press.  The academy said it wanted to make its position known before the Supreme Court considers two marriage cases next week.

In a study published online, the academy says kids do just as well in gay or straight families and what matters is whether they’re raised in an overall nurturing environment. And not allowing same-sex couples to marry “adds to families’ stress, which affects the health and welfare of all household members.” The academy’s conclusion “is based in the fact that there’s no evidence at all that same-sex marriage harms children in any way,” says one of the co-authors of the study, according to CNN.

The academy reached its conclusion by spending four years reviewing the available literature. The end result? A 10-page report with 60 citations, points out the New York Times. The stance of the academy is hardly a surprise considering it has joined other groups in supporting marriage equality. And some insist it may have jumped the gun prematurely. One Louisiana State University professor says there isn’t enough data to fully evaluate the situation.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the "Today's Papers" column from 2006 to 2009. You can follow him on Twitter @dpoliti.

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