Listening to Jason Lewis on the radio last night, I desperately wanted to call in and tell him how wrong he was. While discussing the redefining of marriage, he stated that homosexual couples should be free to marry but not allowed to adopt children. He quoted one of the only robust studies done on children raised by homosexual parents as his reasoning. I think the study is probably correct — children raised by 2 males or 2 females do not do as well as a whole as children raised by a mother and a father. However, my personal thought is that almost any group of children does worse than the whole on average — children raised by 1 parent, children raised by very young parents, children raised by very old parents, children raised by grandparents, children raised by actors, children raised by very wealthy parents, children raised by very poor parents, children raised by divorced parents — all of these groups when pulled out of the whole do worse than the whole in some key life measurements. But that’s not why Jason was wrong. I am shocked at how he missed this: By not allowing gay couples to adopt, you are limiting the freedom of the birth mother!
A large percentage of adoptions are open. In fact, many birth mothers hand-pick the placement family either through an adoption agency or by finding the family on their own. By not allowing gay couples to adopt, you are limiting the rights of the birth mother who ultimately decides who will raise the child. No birth mother should be forced to pick a homosexual couple to raise her child, but she should also not be prohibited from doing so. Adoption agencies also should not be forced to take gay couples as clients, nor should they be prohibited from doing so. In fact, adoption agencies should not be forced to take heterosexual couples as clients. Agencies could specialize in placing children with homosexual couples while other agencies specialize in placing children with heterosexual couples, while others do both.
And Jason, how would you enforce this? Would single individuals that adopt be forced to identify their sexual orientation prior to adopting? What if they lie? What if they later decide they are homosexual and had previously been living a lie? Would children then be taken out of their adoptive homes?
While I still do not agree with the redefining of marriage to include homosexual unions, I do not believe anyone should be denied the chance to raise a child because of their sexual preferences (assuming you have a willing birth mother or surrogate).
On a side note, by legalizing gay marriage, the MN Legislature has given my single, wealthy, elderly father the perfect means to pass me my inheritance without it being subject to the “death tax”….I might be getting divorced soon and my dad will be getting re-married on August 1st:-) Come on — I can’t be the first on who thought of that!
I have viewed so many Facebook status updates today related to the Supreme Court hearing 2 cases related to gay marriage….I have a personal rule to not engage in any political banter on Facebook so I need to get this out somewhere. Truth be told, I am a conservative Christian and I’m sure you’ve guessed it, I believe marriage is meant for 1 man and 1 woman. However, I believe a free people should be allowed to live their lives as they see fit (assuming they are not hurting another individual).
Now, let’s get to gay marriage. There are 2 points I’d like to communicate.
First, marriage as recognized by the government is a form of tax code manipulation in order to influence behavior. It does the state no good to encourage gay marriage. Let me explain. Marriage is a religious ceremony, historically joining one man and one woman together in a new family that typically brings children into the world. The government has an interest in this type of arrangement because it can so EASILY bring children into the world — any man and woman that has sex can bring children into the world assuming no infertility issues. Not all straight couples will have children, but the fact remains that they could with so little trouble. The government essentially becomes the father for children without one. This is a tax burden that should be discouraged, not to mention all the other social and emotional issues it may bring to the fatherless child. To avoid becoming the “father”, the government has recognized marriage via the tax code.
Now, gay couples can have children as well. However, they need some sort of intervention via adoption or a surrogate. In order to do this, the couple has to be stable as it’s not a quick ordeal. They must think through their decision to have children before ever bringing a child into the world due to the difficulty of doing so. Therefore, the government doesn’t need to encourage gay couples to get married for the sake of their potential children.
Second, it can become a slippery slope for freedom of speech. By making gay marriage legal and “endorsed via the tax code”, it could be very difficult for someone like a pastor (or me or you) to publicly state that homosexual acts are sinful (I’m not debating whether or not they are ACTUALLY sinful here…just talking speech). It may be hurtful to hear something like that, much like it would have been hurtful to hear that my now husband and I were “living in sin” when we lived together prior to being married. However, just because it may hurt somebody’s feelings doesn’t mean it can’t be said — it should still be protected speech. In addition, adoption agencies will be forced to place children into gay households EVEN if it against their religious views as some of these are run by churches and other religious organizations. I worry that we will quickly go the route of Canada and begin making it criminal to speak out against any type of homosexual behavior. Once we begin limiting speech in any arena, it will not stop.