Monday, May 07, 2007

One Mom Good, Two Moms Better: Did Stephen Harper Suppress Politically Incorrect Research?

In 2003, at the behest of the Liberal government, Concordia University's Paul Hasting conducted research in which he discovered that:

Parenting by same-sex families is just as good -- if not slightly advantageous -- for children when compared to heterosexual families...

However Mr. Hasting's study has just now seen the light of day, and only because Mr. Hastings himself obtained a copy of it through the Access to Information Act.

Mr. Hastings said it is only speculation but he believes the study was being held back from being published by the Justice Department once Stephen Harper's Conservative government came into power in 2006. The Conservatives upheld their election promise to review the issue of same-sex marriage when a government motion on the question of revisiting the definition of marriage was defeated in the House of Commons in December.

The psychology professor pointed out that a government-commissioned study that suggests same-sex parents may even be advantageous to children would probably not be appreciated by the federal Tories.

This would not be the first time Canada's newish government has been caught suppressing scientific research that its political base wouldn't like. What do you see when you click on the link to the Government of Canada Climate Change website? Nothing, and its been that way since July 2006.


Anonymous said...

Let's take a cue from the playbook used by the global warmists and the gun controllers.

"The research is invalid because those who initiated the survey simply put together what they wanted to find."

Red Tory said...

Wow. It must pain the Conservatives when such inconvenient facts are brought to their attention. Little wonder the report never saw the light of day without an Access to Information request.

knb said...

Fascinating, both the report and it's odd suppression.

JimBobby said...

Whooee! I ain't sure this one won't come back and bite the Grits. The article says teh study was commissioned in 2003. It doesn't say when the completed study was delivered or to which government. I'm guessing that it was delivered to either the Chretien or Martin government. If the study had taken so long that it dragged into 2006, I'd be surprised.

Okay, I can believe that the HarpoonTossers wanna sit on it but why wasn't the report made public by the government that commissioned it?

As I recall, the Liberals were somewhat equivocal on SSM in 2003. Martin was aaginst it before he was for it. Maybe the report came in while he was still on the other side of the fence.

There was no excuse for keeping the report secret when it was submitted and there is no reason for secrecy now. So far, I don't think we have enough information to know if the Liberals kept the report under wraps. Do we?


Scotian said...


You raise an interesting question as to timing, so I went and re-read the article to see if one could deduce anything from it on that score. While there is no direct reference to when the report was submitted, I would think that the original author would know when he submitted it, and if he is only citing the CPC for suppressing it then that makes me think he submitted it either right before or after the last election cycle happened. Granted this is pure inference, but it is given what we have available so far a reasonable one I think.

Even if the Libs suppressed the results, they did commission the study in the first place. That counts for more than I expect the CPC would have done, or at least would have done without rigging the parameters so that they got the answer they wanted just like Baird did on the economist's "analysis" of the economic impacts of Kyoto aka the doom and gloom piece of a few weeks ago now. So I don't see this biting the Libbys in the back much at all, even if they did not release the report immediately. The Libbys are after all the party that in the end did federally legalize SSM even if they were dragged to it. That counts for something, as does the fact they were willing to commission this study in a manner where the end results were not rigged to show a particular predetermined outcome/conclusion. We shall see I suppose.

bigcitylib said...

In the origonal article, there are also some material suggesting that the Tories "distanced" themselves from the report. So at the very least they continued to sit on it. Also, scotian is right you think the author would know about scheduled publication dates.

JimBobby said...

I just find it strange that a study on a topical issue commissioned in 2003 would not be completed until after 2 election cycles.

FWIW, when I saw that the guy was slamming the Cons but not the Grits, it only put an idea into my head that the guy was commissioned by the Libs and was likely a Lib and that was why he only went after the cons. That, and the fact that they are the ones to whom the A to I request had to be made.

It doesn't surprise me that the Cons would want to keep this secret. It really surprises me to think that the report wasn't submitted until after Harper took over.


bigcitylib said...

From Paul Hastings himself:

To be honest, I don't know for certain that any government was
on the report. I indicated to Mr. Aubrey that to suggest the report
covered up would be speculation.

However, the time-line of events
suggest that, if a Justice Minister was choosing not to release the
report, it is more likely that this occured under the Conservative

The report was commissioned and completed under the previous Liberal
government. It took a few months for the French translation of the
to be prepared. My co-authors and I reviewed and made corrections to
translation, and returned those to the Department of Justice. The
election occured between the DoJ receiving those corrections and their
type-setters finalizing the format of the report in both official
languages. I was then informed that the final reports were ready to be
posted on the DoJ website, and that they were awaiting word for a
release date to be approved by then-Justice Minister Vic Toews. After
several months of asking when the release date would be issues, I
decided to file an access to information request. That was processed
quite promptly, and I received a paper copy of the report in less than

JimBobby said...

Thanks. That clears up my timeline questions.

Anonymous said...

Inconveient truths popping out everywhere for the CPC's these days.

Ti-Guy said...

I can debunk that study thusly: being raised by a same-sex couple is disadvantageous for the child because rightwing bigots will abuse and taunt them. Won't somebody please think of the children!!!

It was the same rationale used to support miscegenation laws in the past.

Why should anyone be surprised that the Conservatives have suppressed information? They've been doing that since day one. What puzzles me is how poorly the media have been in investigating these things on its own.

Anonymous said...

'Scientific research' - lol, lol...

Anonymous said...

Fascinating. The Liberals sat on a number of internal gov't reports on the failings of all of our gun control laws, and they only saw the light of day through FOI requests. Strange they weren't so forthcoming themselves.

But I guess because Liberals are perfect, they're allowed to do that, and the media gives them a free pass. And you're right; the media COMPLETELY missed reporting on this.

Ti-Guy said...

Fascinating. The Liberals sat on a number of internal gov't reports on the failings of all of our gun control laws, and they only saw the light of day through FOI requests. Strange they weren't so forthcoming themselves.

Which reports were those? Don't make yourself out to be a liar, now. That would shock me.

Anonymous said...

Or is it saying that two dads are the worst possible combination? Who needs fathers, right?

Anonymous said...

This is the world the PC crowd would envision. Children being raised by ONLY same-sex couples. That way all those horrible conservative genes and tendencies could be bred out of people, and all that would be left are children who grow up to be tolerant, peaceful, sharing, caring, feeling, emotive, empowered, happy super people. Because conservatives are all mean, ugly, vicious, hateful, bigoted, intolerant, mean, spiteful, uncaring, selfing, mean, and just so stupid. And there'd be no criminals either, because every child would be loved. It's too bad none of them would be working.

Ti-Guy said...

Oh, shut up.