blogenlust
1.02.2005

Gay Adoption


It is unfortunate that in the year 2005 we have to have a court battle about whether homosexuals are fit to adopt children. Fortunately, the activist judges courts are making the right decisions:
In his ruling Wednesday, Pulaski County Circuit Judge Timothy Fox said the ban enacted by an Arkansas state agency in 1999 had nothing to do with protecting children's health or welfare, but instead was an attempt to regulate "public morality," which is beyond the agency's authority. Fox also issued a series of findings, based on testimony by child welfare and mental health experts: -- Children of lesbian and gay parents are as well-adjusted as other children. -- Being raised by lesbian or gay parents doesn't increase a child's risk of psychological, behavior or academic problems, confusion about gender identity, difficulties in relating to peers, or child abuse. -- There is no evidence that heterosexual parents can guide children through adolescence any better than homosexual parents can. The issue of whether parents' sexual orientation affects children's well- being is critical not only to the Arkansas case -- which is headed for an appellate court -- but also to a case before the U.S. Supreme Court over Florida's ban on adoptions by lesbians or gays. It could also affect a case in San Francisco Superior Court on California's ban on same-sex marriage. [...] But officials in Arkansas and Florida argue that the ideal situation for a child, which a state is entitled to promote in its laws, is to be raised by a mother and father. That position was endorsed by the federal appeals court in Atlanta that upheld a Florida law banning adoption by any gay, lesbian or bisexual. The state has a legitimate interest in "promoting an optimal social structure for educating, socializing and preparing its future citizens to become productive participants in civil society," the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said last January. For an adopted child, the court said, an "optimal home" is "one in which there is a heterosexual couple or the potential for one." [...] "We have never argued that it was detrimental to children to be placed with homosexuals but just that it would not be optimal," said Julie Munsell, spokeswoman for the Arkansas Department of Human Services. Foster children in such homes would be under stress, she said, "because the social climate in our state has not been accepting of those lifestyles."
The issue here is whether homosexual parents can provide an optimal environment for raising children. Those arguing that it isn't are arguing solely on the basis of moral prejudices, because if they were looking at the situation rationally, they would realize that it isn't about the gender make-up of your parents, it's about the love and attention you give your child. If two men or two women can raise a child in a loving and supportive environment there is no reason why they shouldn't be able to adopt children. Like the issue of gay marriage, the slippery slope in this case is pretty steep. If we aren't going to allow homosexual adoptive parents because they won't provide an optimal environment for raising children, we should be more stringent on heterosexuals that can't provide an "optimal environment." Example: "Oh, you work 80 hours/week? It's not that it's bad, its just that it isn't optimal. Sorry." Of course, the real problem in this country is that there are already more kids up for adoption than interested parents. Then why should we be denying perfectly good parents the right to adopt children solely on the basis of their sexual orientation?