Psychologist's Research Supports Gay Marriage Decision

By Andy Fell - When a panel of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals struck down gay marriage bans in Wisconsin and Indiana this week, the justices cited work by UC Davis professor of psychology Gregory Herek.

In the 40-page opinion, Judge Richard A. Posner wrote, “…there is little doubt that sexual orientation, the ground of the discrimination, is an immutable (and probably an innate, in the sense of in-born) characteristic rather than a choice.” Posner cited a paper published by Herek and colleagues in 2010, which found that 95 percent of gay men and 84 percent of lesbians perceived they had little or no choice about their sexual orientation.

About 20 federal courts have now ruled against state laws that ban gay marriage, or ban recognition of out-of-state same-sex marriages, while one U.S. district court has upheld a state ban, so it’s likely the issue will soon be heard by the Supreme Court.

Originally posted at the Egghead Blog.