In the wake of all the Regnerus nonsense, it was good to see the Southern Poverty Law Center navigate to the critical scientific end of the debate, and do a much more thorough job of examining the key issues than any other outlet has done. The conspiracy mongering that has plagued much of the reporting on what Regnerus did, how he did, why he did it, who helped him, and what that says about the social sciences has not been helpful, and it has smeared the professional reputations of blameless people like Jim Wright (and me) and tarnished the reputation of Social Science Research. The vitriol and harassment, mostly now coming from a handful of clueless LGBT activists, is so severe that if it does not desist really soon, I’m taking legal action and I’m sure Elsevier is probably ready to do the same. So, lawyer up, assholes.
I really appreciated Evelyn Schlatter’s interview and work on the project. It is a very good thing that SPLC has figured out that the real problem runs way beyond the specifics of this single incident. The big picture issue is that people like Regnerus, Wilcox, Smith, etc have had a golden shower of funding for all of their careers, all of it coming from right wing Christian foundations. It’s given them exclusive access to data collection, massive levels of research assistance, travel money, conference money, summer salary, and whatever they need to further their right wing agenda. This isn’t about the funding agencies dictating what researchers find, it’s about ideologue researchers being cultivated from the time that they are undergraduates, and then being rewarded for their fealty to radical right wing Christianity with millions of dollars in grant money. Evelyn did a great job of making sure that came through.