Director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration at the University of Massachusetts Amherst Research Director of the Williams Institute for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy
Pro to the question "Should Gay Marriage Be Legal?"
"Same-sex couples are similarly situated to different-sex couples in terms of their economic status, their family decisions, their interdependence, and their valuing of marriage. It’s no surprise, then, that gay couples eagerly take advantage of the right to marry when they have it. Research shows that couples who marry - gay or straight - want to express their commitment to each other and to their family and friends. Same-sex couples want to marry to create a firm personal and legal foundation for their own lives and security for their current and future children.
Gay couples need access to civil marriage for the same reason that heterosexual couples need it: only the law can create a family relationship between adults that will be recognized by the state and third parties, like employers and insurance companies. Gay couples need the cultural status of marriage (not civil unions) because that’s what their friends and family understand and look for.
Overall, the evidence suggests that letting same-sex couples marry would be good public policy. Same-sex couples and their families will benefit, and the institution of marriage does not suffer. Gay couples’ interest in marriage is a vote in favor of the ongoing relevance of marriage in today’s world, a change that should strengthen, not weaken, the institution."
Experts Individuals with PhDs, JDs, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to gay marriage; and top-level federal government officials significantly involved in gay marriage and related issues. [Note: Experts definition varies by site.]
Involvement and Affiliations:
Director, Center for Public Policy and Administration, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Aug. 2007-present
Research Director, Williams Institute, UCLA, Sep. 2005-present
Professor, Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 1997-present
Visiting Professor, School of Law, University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), 2005-2007, Summer 2008
Visiting Researcher, Amsterdam School for Social Science Research, University of Amsterdam, 2003-2004
Assistant and Associate Professor, Economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 1997-2008
Visiting Assistant Professor, Women’s Studies and Lesbian and Gay Studies, Yale University, 1995-1996
Co-founder and Research Director, Institute for Gay and Lesbian Strategic Studies, 1994-2006
Research Analyst, National Commission for Employment Policy, US Department of Labor, Summer 1994
Assistant Professor, School of Public Affairs, University of Maryland, College Park, 1990-1997
PhD, Economics, University of California at Berkeley, 1990