December 07, 2008

Is the State Really a Better Parent Than a Same-Sex Couple?

That seems to me like an absurdly easy question to answer--of course not. A majority of voters in Arkansas, however, disagreed and made it illegal for any couple "cohatitating outside of a valid marriage" to adopt a child. What exactly DOES constitute a valid marriage in Arkansas, anyway? Insert joke here.

Anyway, I'm not the only one who is troubled by that. From the Chicago Tribune (via PageOneQ):

We don't have enough quality homes as it is, and now we're going to place more restrictions?" asked Susan Hoffpauir, president of the Arkansas chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. "A lot of us are still shell-shocked by this."

While the Nov. 4 vote to ban gay marriage in California grabbed the headlines, it is same-sex parenting that is heating up as the next skirmish in the nation's culture wars. Last week, a Florida judge struck down that state's decades-old law preventing gays and lesbians from adopting.

In Arkansas, some 3,700 children are in state custody, taken from their homes because of abuse and neglect. Of those, 960 kids (average age: 8.5 years) are available for adoption, said Julie Munsell of the state Department of Human Services. Of the 1,100 foster homes, one-third are headed by single people.

But finding potential homes for foster children is a continual challenge across the country—especially for children who are older and have special needs. Some 129,000 U.S. children are in foster care, and the only criteria should be who can best provide a loving, permanent home, according to Adam Pertman, executive director of the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute.

In a recent report, the non-partisan group concluded that a national ban on gay adoptions could add $87 million to $130 million to foster care expenditures annually because these children would then be living in other types of institutional care, such as group homes.

"On its face, this [Arkansas] law is just crazy," Pertman said. "I fear what will happen if other states see this as a model.

It is sad to see people put their personal bigotry ahead of what is in the best interest of an innocent child. Is being the ward of a state really better than having two mommies or two daddies?

it's hard for me to see how Jesus would really want kids kept away from homes where two parents are ready and willing to love them.

Click here to read the rest of the Chicago Tribune article.

1 comment:

  1. Gay bias is just about the last area for bigots to gravitate to. Just like their opposition to stem cell research the bigots on the right don't seem troubled when their bigotry hurts people.