College of Liberal Arts distances itself from sociology professor Mark Regnerus’ statements

Madlin Mekelburg

The College of Liberal Arts released a statement stating the opinions presented by associate sociology professor Mark Regnerus do not reflect the beliefs of the University. 

Liberal arts spokesman David Ochsner said the statement was released in light of Regnerus’ testimony on behalf of the state of Michigan in an ongoing trial challenging the state’s ban on same sex marriage.

In a study released in 2012, Regnerus claimed children raised by gay parents are worse off than those raised by heterosexual couples.

“Dr. Regnerus’ opinions are his own,” the college’s statement said. “They do not reflect the views of the university. Like all faculty, he has the right to pursue his areas of research and express his point of view.”

Ochsner said the College of Liberal Arts has received several inquiries as a result of Regnerus’ testimony. 

“When the study first came out, there was a lot of discussion,” Ochsner said. “It depends on when the issue comes up about gay marriage or about gay rights. … That’s when we tend to hear more about it than other times.” 

Ochsner said he has never before seen this level of response from the community about research or a study. 

“That’s sort of the nature of the business, though, that faculty members have the freedom to pursue topics that are sometimes posing difficult questions,” Ochsner said. “It’s not surprising when you get these kinds of reactions. It’s a very charged topic right now.”