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In SCOTUS brief, Idaho's GOP gov. claims marriage equality brings 'long-term harms to same-sex couples, their children, and society'

by Jeremy Hooper

At several points in his brief, Idaho Governor Butch Otter (or the attorney who wrote the brief for him) references the group American College of Pediatricians as supposed "proof" that gay parents harm our children. As you may or may not know, the American College of Pediatricians is a tiny (between 60–200 members), ideologically-driven splinter organization that was created by the far-right and given a purposely innocuous name for the sole purpose of confusing the credible data put out by the 60,000+ member American Academy of Pediatrics. This organization, which aggressively promotes "ex-gay" junk science, is the same American College of Pediatricians that National Institute of Health Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D smacked down after he discovered that they were twisting his work. This organization also militantly promotes so-called "ex-gay" conversion therapy. This organization has zero credibility. Less than zero, in fact, considering how far they've taken their lies and how much they've been called out by actual scientists.

Yet this activist group is good enough for Idaho's governor to use as basis for an insistence that gay parents who live in his state and throughout the nation are actually doing harm to both their children and their society. In fact, he likens a potential fifty-state marriage ruling to Dred Scott, without any awareness (or at least concession) as to whom the injured parties are in that slavery versus marriage (in)equality equation. Here are a few snips and link to his full brief:

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"Butch" Otter's brief [SCOTUS]

If you're going to reference slavery, Gov. Butch, it's probably not smart to end with a "let the people decide" standard. "The people" of the Dred Scott era the discriminatory status quo, just as "the people" of the 1960s were far behind on the issue of interracial marriage (polling for same-sex marriage long ago surpassed where the public was on interracial marriage in 1991).

Oh, and if you're going to make the outlandish and exceedingly offensive claim that parents like me harm our kids and that millions of same-sex married couples harm our society, then you need to do better than use a sham far-right organization. What a shameful abuse of both your office and your people, governor!


**But wait, there's more! In another section he conflates bisexuality with polyamory:

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Good mother of ignorance, this conflation drives me mad. Bisexuality is a capacity for attraction, just like heterosexuality or homosexuality. A straight or gay person might be attracted to fifty other people, but if he or she chooses to marry, he or she must choose one. The same goes for bisexual people. Just because the straight and gay person's fifty potential suitors might be of one specific sex and the bisexual person's potentials might be of either sex, it doesn't change anything about the requirements of marriage. Marriage requires all people to pledge to just one other.

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