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Paul Cameron’s “Scandinavian Gay Lifespan” Study Debunked

Jim Burroway

April 9th, 2007

Paul CameronIn 1993, Paul Cameron, of the Family Research Institute, began touting a paper he said he presented at the Eastern Psychological Association entitled, “The lifespan of homosexuals.” Using obituaries from various gay newspapers around the country, Cameron claimed that the average lifespan for gay men was a mere 42 years. For lesbians, the average was 44.

While that study was roundly criticized for its ridiculous methodology, those statistics have persisted as a sort of macabre urban legend among some anti-gay activists. Among them include Christopher Rosik, a California psychologist who cites Cameron’s lifespan figure as justification for sexual orientation conversion therapy.

Well, Cameron’s at it again, hijacking the Eastern Psychological Association’s reputation once again to claim that gays and lesbians in registered partnerships in Denmark and Norway experience a lifespan up to 24 years shorter than their heterosexual counterparts. His latest claims are already being picked up by anti-gay activists, conservative news organizations, blogs, and pundits. Conservative columnist Armstrong Williams commented on Cameron’s claims and asked, “Considering these statistics, do you now believe that vulnerable children should be raised in such an unstable environment?” It’s only a matter of time before these statistics make their way into the mainstream media.

Cameron’s paper, “Federal Distortion of Homosexual Footprint,” is filled with all the strange and bogus statistics we’ve come to expect from him. I examined his methods and in my latest report, “Paul Cameron’s Footprint,” I show you why the claims he makes based on data from Denmark and Norway are completely worthless. My conclusions:

Yes, Cameron is up to his same old tricks again. You can bet that this won’t be the last time we hear from him. And no matter how ridiculous his methodologies may be, he will continue to provide statistical fodder for the anti-gay lobby. But with his latest paper on the “Homosexual Footprint,” he doesn’t have a leg to stand on. This time, as always, his “footprint” is planted firmly in his mouth.

You can read my full report here.

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Ex-Gay Watch » Master of Deception Paul Cameron Has a New Study
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

[...] While it’s embarrassing that anyone would still pay attention to this man, experience tells us this will spread like a bad rash. Do yourself a favor and head on over to the Box Turtle Bulletin where Jim Burroway has done his usual expert job of analyzing the sources to get at the truth. It’s well worth the read. [...]

Michael Ditto
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

I would add a couple of things to the analysis:

In the obituary “study,” the Blade and other gay papers tend to wrote only about local notables, but people’s notability fades in old age. Sadly, in gay or straight press, the good works of people are often unnoticed when they die old. As such, profiles of those who have passed often deal with those who have had an untimely death, and those who live to be octogenarians are simply forgotten.

In the age studies, it is harder for anyone single (gay or straight) to find a partner as they age. There are also many practical reasons older partners may not want to register with the government, such as reduction of pension or government benefits. The “marriage penalty” exists in other countries besides the US, and it’s not just a tax thing.

Jody
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

ARGH!

Just simply ARGH!

Kevin
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

It wouldn’t hurt to send an email to those who run the Eastern Psychological Association and let them know that the Camerons are using the EPA to advance their fake science and hurt gays and lesbians in the process:

Philip Hineline, President, Temple University | hineline@temple.edu

Robert Sternberg, President-Elect, Tufts University | robert.sternberg@tufts.edu

Stanley Weiss, Past-President & Chair of Elections, American University | sweiss@american.edu

Jim Burroway
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

I have already been in contact with the EPA. They seem rightfully concerned. I can’t disclose our communications at this time, but hopefully there will be a statement coming from them soon.

“replace the lies with truth” » Blog Archive » Paul Cameron: He Creates the Lies and the Right Wing Spreads them Around
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

[...] Jim writes: [...]

Tiny Queer Footballs » Blog Archiv » Paul Cameron: He Creates the Lies and the Right Wing Spreads them Around
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

[...] Jim writes: [...]

homer
April 9th, 2007 | LINK

Excellent study Jim. I’m glad someone is uncovering the pathetic science of these “scientists.”

Kevin
April 10th, 2007 | LINK

Hey Jim, That is good news about the EPA. I sent them an email yesterday as well. I hope you are talking to them about having your most recent expose of the Cameron’s printed in one of their journals…

Warren Throckmorton » Blog Archive » Only the gay die young? Examining claims of shorter life expectancy for homosexuals
April 12th, 2007 | LINK

[...] the mean time, Jim Burroway, over at Box Turtle Bulletin examined the Camerons’ work with an analysis of the study and a letter about the study from Dr. Paul Hineline, EPA [...]

The View From (Ab)Normal Heights » Blog Archive » Friday Recommended Reading
April 13th, 2007 | LINK

[...] Box Turtle Bulletin: Paul Cameron’s “Scandinavian Gay Lifespan” Study Debunked [...]

Comment: The leadership of the Catholic Church are hate-fuelled ... - hardPuppy - Network Blog
December 31st, 2012 | LINK

[...] of gay people was about 20 years shorter than straight people. The most basic web searches, e.g. here9 would immediately cast doubt on such claims that are most likely linked to the work of a [...]

Comment: The leadership of the Catholic Church are hate-fuelled bigots | MasterAdrian2nd
January 2nd, 2013 | LINK

[...] of gay people was about 20 years shorter than straight people. The most basic web searches, e.g. here would immediately cast doubt on such claims that are most likely linked to the work of a [...]

Comment: The leadership of the Catholic Church are hate-fuelled bigots « MasterAdrian's Weblog
January 2nd, 2013 | LINK

[...] of gay people was about 20 years shorter than straight people. The most basic web searches, e.g. here would immediately cast doubt on such claims that are most likely linked to the work of a [...]

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