Box Turtle Bulletin

Box Turtle BulletinNews, analysis and fact-checking of anti-gay rhetoric
“Now you must raise your children up in a world where that union of man and box turtle is on the same legal footing as man and wife…”
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Posts for March, 2011

Sen Lundberg cites discredited myth in civil unions floor debate

Daniel Gonzales

March 23rd, 2011

Today the Colorado Senate held a floor debate on SB 172, civil unions.  The main opposition came from Senator Kevin Lundberg who we have video of thanks to The Colorado Channel.

We’ve all heard this myth, recognition of gay relationships in Europe (France & Scandinavia) has caused a breakdown in marriage and “the family unit.”

Here’s a video excerpt of Sen Lundberg saying it:

Of course no statistics were cited because there’s no evidence to support it.  In fact this very blog has previously done posts addressing the Scandinavian myth here and here, and Slate.com has a fabulous piece here.

The real data tells a very different story, in most Scandinavian countries marriage has been in decline for up to half a century, long before we pesky gays started publicly demanding equality.

In more recent times those countries have started offering various forms of gay relationship recognition and things have changed in a dramatic way, quoting Slate:

Danish heterosexual marriage rates are now the highest they’ve been since the early 1970’s. And the most recent marriage rates in Sweden, Norway, and Iceland are all higher than the rates for the years before the partner laws were passed. Furthermore, in the 1990s, divorce rates in Scandinavia remained basically unchanged.

Now let’s take a look at births outside of marriage in Norway (source).  The date civil unions were enacted is shown with a red triangle:

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How about marriage and divorce rates in the Netherlands? (source) Sorry there’s no red triangle in this one but registered partnerships were enacted in 1998 and full marriage in 2001:

If Senator Lundberg has other data to prove his claim hopefully he’ll present it when the civil unions bill goes for a 3rd reading on the Senate floor tomorrow.

Sen Lundberg (inadvertently?) demonstrates how his family enjoys heterosexual privilege

Daniel Gonzales

March 23rd, 2011

Today the Colorado Senate held a floor debate on SB 172, civil unions.  The main opposition came from Senator Kevin Lundberg who we have video of thanks to The Colorado Channel.

One of the main ideas of heterosexual privilege is never having your family questioned.

Follow the logic if you can (paraphrased)

  • I, Kevin Lundberg, had my wife hospitalized last week and nobody questioned our family, for I am just a simple man in a position of power… and heterosexual… and white…
  • If there are gays in my district or elsewhere in the state, I haven’t heard any stories of them having trouble in medical situations.  Surely nobody would ever question the validity of a non-traditional family!  And certainly not in the rural areas I represent.
  • By extension there is no problem with gays making medical decisions and this bill is unnecessary.

Here’s the video excerpt: