Sunday, May 27, 2012

Analysis Of Marriage Equality On Marriage Rates

This above graphic comes from an analysis by Slate magazine of marriage rates in jurisdictions which have legalized marriage equality (Massachusetts, Iowa, Vermont, Connecticut, New Hampshire and District of Columbia) versus the national marriage rate. Do you see a trend or correlation? Me neither!

Neither does Slate, according to "Does Gay Marriage Destroy Marriage?":

Start with Massachusetts, which endorsed gay marriage in May 2004. That year, the state saw a 16 percent increase in marriage. The reason is, obviously, that gay couples who had been waiting for years to get married were finally able to tie the knot. In the years that followed, the marriage rate normalized but remained higher than it was in the years preceding the legalization. So all in all, there’s no reason to worry that gay marriage is destroying  marriage in Massachusetts. 
The other four states that have legalized gay marriage—New York, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont, and New Hampshire—have done it more recently, somewhere between 2008 and 2011. But from the little data we have, it looks as if the pattern will be more or less the same—a temporary jump in marriage followed by a return to virtually the same marriage rates as before gay marriage became legal. Washington, D.C., which started accepting same-sex marriages in March 2010, saw a huge 61.7 percent increase in marriage that year, though it’s too soon to see where it will settle. Again, no signs of the coming apocalypse.

The piece also goes on to look at divorce rates in the states where same-sex couples can get legally married (and divorced) right now to try to determine if such activity has any impact on the divorce rates of opposite-sex couples. The data just does not indicate that there is any impact of marriage equality on divorce or marriage rates in a state, unsurprisingly. What a shock, another talking point by religious extremists and heterosexual supremacists turns out to be obviously false.

Hat/tip to Americablog

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