Arkansas 'enlightenment' | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Arkansas 'enlightenment'

Posted By on Sat, Jul 15, 2006 at 9:05 AM

Remember our blog item from yesterday about Arkansas appearing more progressive than New York on the subject of gay parenting?

Well, a columnist for Bloomberg News took that theme and ran with it:

Liberal New Yorkers may be surprised, but when it comes to enlightenment, their state's highest court could learn something from its counterpart in Arkansas.

Yes, Arkansas.

A few days before the New York Court of Appeals decided that gay New Yorkers can't marry in the Empire State, the Arkansas Supreme Court struck down a state rule that barred gay people from serving as foster parents.

What in the world persuaded some robed hillbillies to say such a thing, smug New Yorkers could wonder.

Research is the answer. Social science. Unlike their brethren in New York, the Arkansas judges based their decision on actual evidence, which showed that gay parenting doesn't harm children. ...

At least in Arkansas, the court was willing to call bias bias.

The judges there said that the driving force behind the gay foster parenting ban was board members' views on religion and morality and their bias against homosexuals.

That's a remarkable ruling in a state where politicians boast that they try to conform public policy to their religious views. These are justices who must face voters to keep their jobs.

The ruling is all the more remarkable given that three out of four voters in Arkansas said no to gay marriage in 2004.

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