Editorial: Ballot measures are no place for discrimination
Failed initiatives had unwelcome echoes of the past Oregonians can be thankful that groups pushing to overturn the state's civil union and anti-discrimination laws failed to qualify their initiatives for the ...
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Since: Aug 08
#2 Aug 20, 2008
I'm proud to be an Oregonian.
“I Am What I Am”
Since: Sep 07
#3 Aug 20, 2008
Look who's talking ...
#4 Aug 20, 2008
On an international scale, the most comprehensive study to date on the effect of same-sex marriage / partnership on heterosexual marriage and divorce rates was conducted looking at over 15 years of data from the Scandinavian countries. The study (later part of a book), by researcher Darren Spedale, found that, 15 years after Denmark had granted same-sex couples the rights of marriage, rates of heterosexual marriage in those countries had gone up, and rates of heterosexual divorce had gone down - contradicting the concept that same-sex marriage would have a negative effect on traditional marriage.
All U.S. states submit monthly summaries of vital statistics on births, deaths, marriages, and divorces to the U.S. Center For Disease Control's National Center For Health Statistics (NCHS) who then prepares monthly and yearly reports. The following statistics are based on that NCHS material. Over three years have passed now since same-sex marriage was legalized in Massachusetts and data from all of 2004 and 2005 are now available.
The current divorce trends in Massachusetts counter claims of same-sex marriage having a negative impact on traditional marriage. In fact, for several years now the Commonwealth has had the lowest divorce rate of any state in the union, coupled with near-bottom marriage rates. In 2004 the Massachusetts divorce rate, at 2.2 per 1,000 residents per year, was considerably lower than the U.S. national average rate for that year, 3.8 per 1,000 and close to the national average of 2.0 back in 1940. Massachusetts also has low marriage rates, though: in 2003, when no same-sex marriages were allowed, only 5.6 of each 1000 people did so, making the state 48th in the nation. In 2004, with the allowance of same-sex marriages, the overall marriage rate jumped to 6.5 per 1000. In the first two years of same-sex marriage in the Bay State, the rate of divorce declined, making it likely that Massachusetts will continue to have the lowest divorce rate in the nation.
States which have taken aggressive action against same-sex marriage have not done nearly as well during the two year period of legal same-sex marriage in Massachusetts. The preliminary data from 2004 and 2005—from the 17 U.S. states which have provided data on divorce for 2004 and 2005 and whose voters also passed state constitutional amendments prohibiting same-sex marriage—presents a striking picture: the group of U.S. states arguably most hostile to divorce, those which have passed both state laws and also state constitutional amendments prohibiting same-sex marriage, lag dramatically in terms of divorce rate improvement when compared to same-sex marriage-friendly states.
Among those U.S. states that are most opposed to same-sex marriage which have also provided divorce data for the time period — Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Utah, Texas — the average divorce rate (unadjusted for population changes) for 2004 and 2005 increased 1.75%. This group contains 4 of the 5 states with the highest divorce rate increases in the U.S. during 2004 and the first 11 months of 2005.
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