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Gay Marriage and Reproductive Options: An argument for Gay Marriage

lgleysteen's picture
Web Event 2.pdf752.17 KB


Kaye's picture

gay parenting

You've chosen an important topic for this second web event and have creatively used a non-traditional academic medium to convey your information.  The overall design of your pamphlet is great--it's clean, yet eye-catching--and it includes helpful links to other websites with additional information. 

I'm puzzled though by who is the intended audience for your pamphlet.  In your opening paragraph, you state that it "is intended to give an overview on non-traditional forms of reproduction," but you go on to claim that "(t)he two main methods used are adoption and surrogacy."  Based on the first statement, I expected that the pamphlet would include a full range of reproductive options, while the latter claim made me think it was directed more specifically at gay males.  If you would like to reach a broader audience, I hope you would include other reproductive options, such as artificial insemination, which is easily accessed by fertile women of any sexual orientation.  Another way to approach the question of audience is to ask yourself, "How do you want people to use this pamphlet?"  I can imagine that a pamphlet that included the biology of reproductive options and thoughtful counterarguments to the claims that only traditional male husband/female wife couples are suitable parents would be appreciated not only by gay parents, but by their allies.

Including a cartoon in the pamphlet is a nice touch, but I suggest that you use a different one.  Frankenstein indeed highlights the potential spectrum of reproductive technologies, but I'm troubled with using an image of a "monster" to promote gays as potential adoptive parents.  Too many proponents of conservative "family values" view the LGTBQ community as unnatural and abnormal, and I would be wary of reinforcing that bias through this cartoon.

Some other thoughts to consider: You might want to clarify your statment that "Technological and social advancements have proven that it is not necessary for both a man and a woman to (RE)produce."  Although some of the early stages of conception can now occur in a clinical laboratory, the basic ingredients need to be provided by a fertile male and a fertile female.  Even advanced reproductive technologies require sperm, ova and a receptive womb to produce a baby. 

Also, consider elaborating your claim that "(t)hese advantages challenge the idea that it is necessary for both a man and a woman to be participants in raising a child."  Single parents had been successfully raising children long before biomedical researchers developed reproductive technologies, often relying on extended families and friends.  My experience has been that gay parents often involve family and friends of different genders and sexual orientations in their children's lives.

Perhaps you could strengthen several of your claims, e.g., "There have been no studies done to prove that children raised in homosexual families are in some way damage(d)."  What's important is not that there are "no studies done," but that the studies done have proved "that children raised in homosexual families are NOT damaged."  Giving some indication of the number of studies that have been conducted and/or the number of children who have been followed would make this claim (and others) more convincing.