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Radio host: ‘Two guys pretending to be sexual mates are making a mistake’
Christians can’t “tolerate” same-sex marriage because to do so would be to give up beliefs and accept the homosexual lifestyle as “healthy and normal,” radio host Jan Mickelson said while introducing GOP gubernatorial hopeful Bob Vander Plaats and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee at a public event Wednesday.
Mickelson was addressing a fundraiser for the Iowa Family Policy Center. The influential social conservative organization has formally endorsed Vander Plaats’ campaign and vowed to sit out the November election if he’s not the candidate.
“Personally, I think two guys pretending to be sexual mates are making a mistake,” he said. “More than that, they are violating the design of their bodies. More than that, they are sinning against their maker. More than that, they are likely to shorten their lives in this world and impair their destinies in the next.”
In opposing gay rights, many conservatives point to studies conducted by the Family Research Institute that contend that homosexual men have a life expectancy that is 20 years shorter than heterosexual men. The studies, however, have been overwhelmingly rejected, and as critics have repeatedly pointed out, the methods used were extremely flawed. They relied on obituaries published in gay newspapers over a 12 month period and compared them to obituaries from general circulation newspapers.
Many of the group’s studies were originally published in the journal Psychological Reports, which unlike many scientific journals, charges a fee to authors for publication and does not reject an article on the basis of a negative peer review.
Dr. Gregory Herek, a professor at the University of California-Davis, said the study was “a textbook example of the perils of using data from a convenience sample to generalize to an entire population,” concluding the research was “absolutely worthless for estimating the life expectancy of gay men and lesbians.”
John Karon of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was asked about it and pointed out the obvious: “You’re only getting the ages of those who die.” Gay men of the generation targeted by the youth-oriented gay press who do grow old would not be included in the study’s sample.
Conservatives also point to a study published in 1997 by the International Journal of Epidemiology as evidence of homosexuality shortening a person’s life span. In light of all the attention their study was receiving from anti-gay groups, the study’s authors felt compelled to speak out in order to keep “homophobic groups” from misinterpreting their research simply to restrict “the human rights of gay and bisexuals rather than promoting their health and well being.”
Mickelson quickly turned his attention to the current situation in Iowa, saying that because a “a liberal court, a liberal legislature and a liberal governor” are standing up for same-sex marriage, groups like the Iowa Family Policy Center, and candidates like Vander Plaats, must resist.
“I’m really up for it,” Mickelson said. “I’m really up for this ruckus.”
Vander Plaats has promised that, if elected governor, he will issue an executive order to overturn the Iowa Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage. Constitutional scholars, and even many of his fellow Republicans, have dismissed the idea as unconstitutional. Even Vander Plaats has admitted it would likely lead to his impeachment.
Conservative blogger Craig Robinson posted video of Mickelson’s speech.