08 January 2009

It's not just Proposition 8

California isn't the only place where a discriminatory and harmful initiative passed in November. Arkansas voters also enacted a ban on gays (or actually "cohabiting couples") adopting children or becoming foster parents.

It's important to be clear about what the issue actually is in cases like this. The reactionaries likes to frame the question in terms of whether it's better for children to be raised by heterosexual (or married) couples than by homosexual (or unmarried) ones. But that isn't the choice which exists in practice. Since the number of children needing homes exceeds the supply of available places for them, banning worthy but unpopular people from adopting just means that the children they would otherwise have taken in won't get adopted at all. The question is not whether A is better than B; it's whether B is better than nothing.

Adoption restrictions can also prevent children whose biological parents can't take proper care of them from being placed with close relatives with whom they already have a close relationship but who happen to belong to a group disliked by bigots -- even in cases where that's what the biological parents want.

The reactionaries' rhetorical squid-ink on this issue can best be dispelled by the facts about actual cases of real people whose lives are affected. You can read about several such cases, and prospects for a challenge to the Arkansas law, here.


Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

I read something about the rant in Arkansas before...Texas border's Arkansas. What puzzled me was...what does one's sexual preference have to do with parenting? I never could figure that one out...and I believe that there is just this nationwide mindset attacking gay's actually. From the military to parenting to even marriage.Another confusing thing to me was...I understand straight's argueing over the marriage issue...but why they were so gung-ho even against civil union's of any kind? Yet many of these straight folk's say they are not anti-gay? I think alot of folk's are full of crap on what they feel. But parenting dont have a damn thing to do with sexuality. I see no problem at all with gay's/lesbian's adopting kid's, and if there was question of sexual contact or anything...they would be treated by law just like a straight person..this is all hogwash to me..and silly. I can hardly believe that we actually argue over what someone does sexually in private. Many straight folk's practice what would be considered perverted or fetishistic sex act's...many who are married and parent's... no one is questioning them, because it hasnt a damn thing to do with parenting responsibilities. Thank You.

08 January, 2009 21:41  
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09 January, 2009 13:06  

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