Exclusive: Pearcey Report Reveals What AP Left Unsaid
Adoption Institute Report Written
By Pro-Homosexual Advocate
By J. Richard Pearcey
March 24, 2006 -- According to the Associated Press, the Adoption Institute has produced a study that “strongly supports” (quoting AP) the rights of homosexuals to adopt children.
The author of the study is identified as “Illinois State University adoption expert Jeanne Howard.” AP reports that the study was “funded by the Gill Foundation and the Human Rights Campaign, both active” in promoting a pro-homosexuality agenda into American society.
However, AP does not inform readers that author Jeanne Howard is passionately involved in promoting acceptance of homosexuality in her work with P-FLAG (Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians and Gays).
“Homosexual activists’ handprints are all over this one,” says Robert Knight, director of the Culture & Family Institute, an affiliate of Concerned Women for America. “Take it with a grain of salt. They funded it and will no doubt promote it, hoping the public will be too distracted to check its pedigree.”
Checking the pedigree is not that difficult. Information regarding Howard’s connection to P-FLAG is available at a website titled “The Self Help Center,” based in Champaign, Ill. The “Self Help Center” is identified as a “program of family service.”
In a section of the website titled “Gay/Lesbian,” Howard’s name appears as a contact person for P-FLAG. Contact information includes a phone number at a local street address as well as Howard’s email address at Illinois State University (ISU).
In the same section of the website, P-FLAG is clearly identified as a “group for parents, family and friends to promote the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered persons, their family and friends through support to cope with an adverse society, education to enlighten an ill-informed public and advocacy to end discrimination and to secure equal civil rights. P-FLAG provides opportunity for dialogue about sexual orientation and acts to create a society that is healthy and respectful of human diversity.”
Times, dates, and locations are given for group meetings at the 1st United Methodist Church, 211 N. School St., Normal, Ill. Membership costs to join P-FLAG are noted, and site visitors are informed that there is “no cost to attend local meetings” and that “newsletter and group literature” is available.
An internet search of Howard’s phone number called up a street address, her name, and the name of another person at the same address in Normal, Ill. The Pearcey Report called this number, and a voice message indicated that Howard and her husband could be reached there.
The email address for Howard given at the “Self Help Center” website is the same email address noted on Howard’s faculty website at ISU. The Pearcey Report emailed Howard at that address.
In her reply, Howard acknowledges her work with P-FLAG. She says the group works nationally to offer “support and information to parents, family, friends, co-workers, etc., of gay/lesbian/bi-sexual and transgendered people. At the local level, we hold monthly support and information meetings where parents, siblings, friends and sometimes GLBT people themselves come together to help one another.”
Howard says “parents in particular often struggle when they first learn their child is gay/lesbian and we are a safe and helpful place for them to come.” In addition, “We also are sometimes involved in advocacy -- responding to misinformed news articles or letters to the editor, working for the passage of legislation that disallows discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation,” and so on.
The “Self Help” website also gives the national website address of P-FLAG, and those who wish to make contact are instructed to write: c/o Jeanne Howard, P-FLAG. This is followed by a Post Office box in Bloomington, Ill. Asked about the accuracy of the information on the website, Howard says she believes it “is correct.”
What does this activist pedigree suggest for the value of the Adoption Institute study? “Studies should be judged on their scientific merit,” says Knight. “This one is no exception.”
He cautions that “when a study is being used as ‘scientific evidence’ on behalf of an ideological agenda, particularly that of the groups that funded it, the public deserves to know its pedigree. Certainly the press goes out of its way to uncover ideological connections when a study is done by someone identified with conservative views, no matter how sound the research is. The same standard should apply to all.”
Knight applauds AP for noting “that the study’s funding came from homosexual activist groups.” But he faults the news service for not informing “readers that the study’s author apparently is an activist with the radical homosexual group P-FLAG, which promotes acceptance of homosexuality among children and teens. For years, P-FLAG has urged schools to provide books with graphic seduction scenes between adults and minors. P-FLAG regularly characterizes any parents who object as bigots motivated by ‘hate.’
“Does this disqualify Ms. Howard’s study?,” Knight asks. “No, but it shows that the study did not emerge in a scientific vacuum.”
How did Jeanne Howard become involved with P-FLAG? “I have a child who is gay,” she says, “and although I thought of myself as tolerant and accepting, I found I had some struggles. My spouse and I first came to get support, and now I come to lend it.”
J. Richard Pearcey is editor and publisher of The Pearcey Report.