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Friday NOM-Sense: A Picard Moment

imageYour probably wondering what our good Captain Jean-Luc Picard has to do with this week’s Friday NOM-sense. Give me a moment and I’ll explain. This week’s Friday NOM-Sense article comes to us from the NOM funded Ruth Institute. In a recent quiz they asked a question in relation to a study put out by the William’s Institute in December of 2007 (4 years ago). A study that relied on information from the 2000 census (10 years ago).

What percentage of US children lives in households headed by same sex couples?
And apparently the correct answer was less than 0.4%. They then go through the math of how they come up with the figure. Please note that accurate census information regarding same-sex couples wasn’t collected in the 2000 census or in the 2007 snapshot. In fact, the Bush administration had ruled that same sex couples would not be counted in the 2010 census, a ruling that was overturned by the Obama administration. According to the Huffington Post article discussing Obama’s decision to count same sex couples.
the issue is that some same-sex couples in civil unions or domestic partnerships already identified themselves as husbands or wives, both in the 2000 census and in the annual American Community Survey that the bureau produces each year.
Which means that in those census surveys at least some same sex couples in civil unions and domestic partnerships (the types most likely to have children) would have identified as married since there is no civil unions or domestic partnership boxes to check. That means that those couples were left out of the Williams Institute survey. But frankly, regardless of what the actual numbers of same sex couples raising children actually are, their errors in research and math are not why this ends up being this weeks NOM-sense. At the end of the post Betsy makes this comment.
Given that less than four tenths of one percent of children is being raised in same sex households, it hardly seems unkind to say that this represents an exceptional situation. The law might justly treat this as an exception.
So apparently since only 0.4% of US children are raised by same sex couples, it’s ok to bar those families from the institution of civil marriage. As if there is some magic number somewhere that says if it’s this many it’s ok to discriminate, if it’s more than that you can’t. Which brings me back to our man the Captain. In the movie Star Trek Insurrection the Federation and the Son’a have teamed up to secretly relocate the Ba’ku from their planet against their will. When Picard figures out what is going on he confronts Admiral Dougherty who responds with.
Jean-Luc, we're only moving six hundred people.
To which Picard comes back with and with which I ask Betsy of the Ruth Institute.
How many people does it take before it becomes wrong? Hmm? A thousand? Fifty thousand? A million? How many people does it take, Admiral!?
How many people does it have to be before robing them of the civil rights and human dignity is wrong?