A recent report claiming that homosexuals have significantly shorter life spans than heterosexuals is drawing fire from an expert who describes the study as "severely methodologically flawed."
"It is no wonder why this pseudo-scientific report claiming a drastically shorter life expectancy in homosexuals compared with heterosexuals has been published on the internet without preceding scientific peer-review," criticized Danish epidemiologist Morten Frisch, according to a statement that appeared in the weblog of Dr. Warren Throckmorton. Throckmorton is a psychology professor at the Grove City College and a noted expert on sexuality issues.
"The methodological flaws are of such a grave nature that no decent peer-reviewed scientific journal should let it pass for publication," said Frisch, the main author of a recent report on environmental influences on marriage decisions among heterosexuals and homosexuals.
Recently, Dr. Paul Cameron and his son Dr. Kirk Cameron of the conservative Colorado-based Family Research Institute released a report that asserted that "gay-adopted" children may be in a more vulnerable family situation because homosexuals have a significantly shorter life span. Therefore, the child may be in greater danger of losing one or both parents at an earlier age than children with heterosexual parents.
The psychologists had analyzed the life spans and census registries from Denmark – which has the longest history of gay "marriages" in the world – and Norway, concluding that gay couples lived about 24 years less than heterosexual couples.
Frisch criticized the researchers' method of gathering information for failing to take into account factors such as stigmatization. The Danish epidemiologist noted that most homosexuals, even in countries considered liberal, do not openly discuss their sexuality in public. In particular, older homosexuals who grew up when homosexuality was either a crime or a psychiatric diagnosis are even less likely to admit that they are homosexual.
As a result, Frisch and critics have argued that the researchers' conclusion that homosexuals die younger because fewer people over the age of 60 reported that they are gay is flawed. Instead, the epidemiologist said the report rather reveals that younger people tend to be more open about their homosexuality moreso than life expectancies in gays and non-gays.
"All it reflects is the skewed age distribution towards younger people among those who are openly homosexual," concluded Frisch.
The Family Research Institute was founded in 1982 with the goal to generate empirical research on issues viewed as threatening to the traditional family, in particular homosexuality, AIDS, sexual social policy, and drug abuse. Dr. Paul Cameron, chairman of FRI, was nominated in 1985 by the national gay magazine The Advocate as "the most dangerous man in America.