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Mommy, Daddy and marriage

September 24, 2008

Re " Protecting marriage to protect children," Opinion, Sept. 19

I want to commend The Times for publishing the courageous article by David Blankenhorn endorsing Proposition 8.

No doubt he (and The Times) will be castigated for this politically incorrect stance. But what he has done is state what has been proved beyond question -- that what is best for children is to be raised by a father and mother who love them and each other.

Why not aspire for what is best for our children?

Martha Roberts

Beaumont

Blankenhorn's essay is stunning in its misunderstanding of history.

For most of history, marriage was an economic union based on land, property, business and societal positioning within formal or informal caste systems and flat-out exchanges of cash.

Our forebears were quite cognizant that children may or may not arise from a sexual pairing -- and that even if they did, they would often not survive -- but joining economic forces between two families would strengthen the prospects of all members of the extended family units, if not entire tribes or villages.

That people choose to interpret history incorrectly in order to bolster their own moral arguments is unfortunate but common. For nobody to call that person on their falsehoods is unacceptable. I hope no one will read his essay and use "history" to determine their vote on same-sex marriage.

Tara C. Woods

Rancho Palos Verdes

It is shocking to me that in this yearlong study of the history of marriage, Blankenhorn never happened upon the wealth of studies that demonstrate that when it comes to raising children, gays and lesbians are as suited to the task as their straight counterparts.

One need only ask the American Medical Assn., the Child Welfare League, the American Academy of Pediatrics -- the list goes on. To say that "all our scholarly instruments seem to agree" that children need a biological mother and biological father at home is an outrageous claim, not to mention one that denigrates good adoptive parents of all genders.

I can agree with Blankenhorn on one thing -- marriage is about protecting children -- but I am saddened that he does not include the millions of children who would be protected if their same-sex parents were allowed to marry. He's tried to explain his position to us. Now try explaining it to them.

Laura Durso

Honolulu

About the self-proclaimed liberal Democrat Blankenhorn: A brief look into the Institute for American Values, his organization, revealed a list of academic advisors including W. Bradford Wilcox, who proposes that evangelical Protestant father-mother families provide the ideal environment for raising well-adjusted children.

Following the trail, I found that Wilcox's writing is frequently published by a conservative think tank, the Heritage Foundation. That organization also considers Blankenhorn an expert on family issues.

Could our liberal friend be a wolf in sheep's clothing?

Marc Jones

San Diego

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