Monday, June 04, 2007

Ethica and Gay/Lesbian Adoption

When I was on Third Mom’s site, I saw that she had a post about an adoption ethics conference that is being sponsored by Ethica and the Evans B. Donaldson Adoption Institute in Washington D.C. this October. This sounds like a fascinating event and it is definitely one of those rare times that I wish I lived closer to the hub of U.S. politics.

Above and beyond that, I realized that I hadn’t taken a look at the Ethica website in awhile so I hopped over to check things out. Front and center on the site was a link called “Ethica's Position on Legislative Proposals to Ban Gay Adoption/Foster Care” and, because this is an issue that I am particularly interested in, I had to check out what they had to say.

They start out by explaining that there are 15 states currently trying to establish legislation to keep someone (who happens to be gay or lesbian) from adopting and goes on to list the reasons that they can’t support these actions. My favorite is their number three reason… “No politician, religious leader, policy group or voter has the right to malign or judge any family who actively supports America’s children unless they have fostered or adopted themselves, and have actively participated in recruiting 500,000 parents to care for each and every child in American’s foster system. There should be no discussion about “better” parents when so many children have no parents at all.”

I have to say that I have never understood why so many people think that someone’s sexual orientation has anything to do with being a parent or a foster parent. Just as families touched by Korean adoption often complain that people only see what they want to see and don’t bother to take the time to see what’s really there, I think that many people get all tripped up by their own preferences and forget that this is a big world full of wonderfully different people. A marriage made of a man and a woman does not automatically equal perfect parents (witnessed in the news reports of abuse, neglect and incompetence), so why should it be a natural assumption that a “non-traditional family” is somehow imperfect. There is my soapbox speech for the day.
(Everyone is, of course, welcome to respectively disagree.)

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