Psychology Should Inform SCOTUS Ruling on Same-Sex Marriage

Lesbian Couple With Baby

By Efua Andoh (PI Communications Staff)

Unless you’ve been living under a rock the last few years, you know that gay marriage is all over the news these days. Events are moving very fast with national polling indicating nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that same-sex marriage will become legal nationwide.

Over here in Public Interest, we are anticipating the Supreme Court hearing arguments challenging the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8 at the end of the month.

Why? Because we recently assisted in APA’s filing of two amicus briefs with the Court that clearly state “there is no valid scientific basis” for denying same-sex couples the right to marriage.

SCOTUS’ eventual ruling has the potential to impact the lives of millions; not just the LGBT couples who wish to formalize their relationships, but their children and families as well.

The briefs cite research affirming that, like straight couples, gay couples form long lasting and deep emotional attachments and are just as capable of providing nurturing and loving homes to their children.

And, denying recognition to legally married same-sex couples only contributes further to stigma undermining their physical and mental health.

Chances are, you know all this, but did you know that denying same-sex marriage rights also harms LGBT people’s families and friends?

APA supports full marriage equality not just because it is a social justice and human rights issue, but because the empirical evidence on same-sex couples and their families is so strong.

Our compendium of resources on marriage and family issues for LGBT individuals is continually updated based on the latest research findings, and the scientific consensus remains the same.

We, at Public Interest, will be tuned into SCOTUS’ deliberations at the end of the month, hoping they make the right decision. One that is informed by psychological science.

What do you think is going to happen?


In more breaking news, Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) voiced his own support of same-sex marriage today, joining a growing bipartisan contingent of political leaders.

Both the Obama Administration and over 100 Republican leaders have submitted amicus briefs of their own challenging the constitutionality of DOMA and Proposition 8.

And former President Clinton, who actually signed DOMA into law, has recently stated that he believes it to be unconstitutional and should be overturned.

Do you think these political voices will make a difference?


  1. You know, I have always been for same-sex marriage, but I didn’t realize before this week how important this issue is. I was particularly compelled by the research showing how the mental and physical health of GLBT people (and their friends and families) in states that ban same-sex marriage suffers as a result of the institutionalized discrimination. I hope SCOTUS makes the right call!


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