Tag Archives: adoption

The Ability of Gay People to be Good Parents

27 Jun

I just finished reading a blog, that I would like to talk a little more about. Just a little. You can find the blog here.

First and foremost, let me say that I enjoyed reading it. It wasn’t aimed to be condescending or attacking anyone (at least as far as I could see). This makes it very easy to discuss rationally, which I appreciate greatly. The point of it? That when two people of opposing opinions discuss a topic, they should stay clear of attacking one another when both sides treat each other civilly. I agree.

The comments on it, while I did not read all of them, also seemed to be genuinely civil. I’m sure as I typed my response, they became increasingly unwieldy as they usually do, but thats besides the point. As I was reading them, the writer clarified that he supports neither gay marriage, nor gay adoption, but that he was still close friends with someone who is gay. His reasoning was that gay marriage and gay adoption lack in areas that are necessary for a healthy child and marriage.

Lets talk about that. I know that there are usually other reasons, but lets just talk about this one.

First, I don’t believe that any evidence on this matter is legitimate or substantial enough to warrant the removal of rights of marriage and adoption. Lets assume, for arguments sake, that it is. This would mean that any family situation that would prove unfit for a child at some point in the future would be denied the ability to be married or to adopt. The unfortunate part, however, is that there are so many types of family situations outside of the nuclear family that it would be a tall order to analyze all of them. Single parent households would be especially difficult, considering the parent isn’t married. The only thing we would be able to do is take their child away and not allow them to adopt. No single person, then, would be able to adopt.

This also brings up another point I think is important to understand. Just because two people love each other and want to get married does not mean they want to have children. I don’t want to have children at any point in my life, but I do want to get married to someone I love. Should we look so far in advance that we deny someone the right to get married, even if they might never want to have children? And at that, there is also the argument that marriage is a means of procreation. That means not only should you not be allowed to get married because you will be an unfit parent, but also because you don’t want children.

I would like to put forth an example – the same example I used in reply to the blog – to illustrate how wide the effects of this reasoning could stretch. I used drinking. It seems really unrelated(ish), I know. For this example, I want to assume that this fictional person is an unmarried and single alcoholic, whose problem only affects her personal life (they maintain a job without error, pay their bills, etc). So what grounds should we remove her marriage rights? If we assume she doesn’t want children, she automatically can’t get married (at least according to the far reaches of this blog post). But lets assume she does want children. Lets say we decide alcoholics are unfit parents. We then take away her rights to get married. This can, unfortunately, be applied to a vast number of lifestyles.

I would also like to say that we have an entire agency devoted to protecting children. Mental and physical abuse and neglect are handled by these people. Along with the help of our legal system, these people make the judgement call. They decide who is an unfit parent. I think we should leave it in their hands, not in our own to make judgement calls too far in advance to even know if a couple will have children. If a gay couple, for whatever reason, emotionally neglects their child, then by all means take their child away and give it to a home that can love it, but don’t condemn them for what can only be a speculation by not allowing them to even get married.

Now, lets talk about the legitimacy of an argument that homosexual parents do not have the ability to provide a healthy home for their children. I can’t say that I’m certain what this encompasses. I can’t say for certain that this “evidence” is actually even credited. What I can say is every family dynamic is different, and all of them pose different problems. Many children who come from divorced or single parents think that marriage is nonsense and unnecessary. Children who come from extended family living situations are likely to have closer ties with family than those who come from a nuclear family. Children who have gay parents might have more open minds about homosexuality. Everyone has different experiences because of who their parents are and how they are raised, and its just something that we come to terms with and hopefully make us better people in the end.

Do you think this is a legitimate argument? Should we extend the illegalization of marriage from homosexuals to others who might be consider unfit parents?

Do Children Have the Right to Know Who Their Parents Are?

6 May

On a blog site I’m subscribed to, a woman has a petition going around in hopes that she can take her child’s father’s name off of her birth certificate.

Her reasoning is that her child was molested by this man, at only 4 months old. Now, before you start thinking about what king of a sick person would do this, I ask you to stay objective.

The name on a birth certificate is nothing more than a declaration of whose penis went into your vagina to make the baby (in theory, at least). I think every person has a right to know whose DNA came together to form them.

And the man that molested his 4 month old daughter is nothing more than a DNA contributor. He will be that regardless of whether his name is on the birth certificate or not, and he will not be her father regardless of whether his name is on the birth certificate or not. He will be in prison a minimum of 30 years, and she won’t remember him (she was only 4 months, remember?).

I understand her desire to have his name removed, and according to the text of the petition, she is having difficulty with the Rhode Island government and filling out paperwork for various things that are part of her daily life.  I think that the biological father of this child should sign over any and all rights, but I think that his name should stay on the birth certificate.

Do you think both parents names should be on a child’s birth certificate if both parents are known? Do we, as people, have the right to know whose DNA we carry? What do you think about this situation?

The Truth About Kill vs. No Kill Animal Shelters

17 Apr

Ever been to an animal shelter? One of the first questions folks usually ask is if its a “kill” or a “no kill” shelter.

I currently work in a shelter, and I’ve come to dislike these terms – they are inaccurate. Better, more accurate terms to use are “open admission” and “limited admission” shelter. The reason for this is because “no kill” shelters do euthanize animals in certain situations, and because “kill” doesn’t accurately describe the mission of open admission shelters.

At an open admission shelter, all animals are accepted, regardless of the state they are in and the capacity of the shelter. At limited admission shelters, only a specified number of animals are taken in, and often these animals are confined to a specific age, species, and/or breed – these shelters will often turn away animals, who will then end up in open admission shelters anyway. That’s the first thing you need to know.

The second thing, is that no one wants to euthanize animals. Open admission shelters will work with other shelters and rescues to move animals that have behavioral or other issues, and to reduce the number of animals euthanized (we are all trying to save the animals – we love them, remember?). Limited admission shelters often work with these open admission shelters to provide these homes and to work with these animals to make them adoptable. In a case that an open admission shelter can’t place an animal, or the animal can’t be adopted (health or behavior issues), sometimes euthanasia is the only option. Its also the last option; remember, no one wants to do this.  If an animal is too sick, its quality of life is severely diminished. If an animal is aggressive, how can a shelter say that it is adoptable? If it gets out one day and kills a child, who is to blame?

That being said, limited admission shelters will also resort to euthanasia in extreme cases.

Neither shelter type is necessarily better than the other, because they both work together in order to help find homes for animals and to help correct the animal overpopulation crisis. That is why it is so important to spay and neuter pets. If the number of animals decreases, the number of places they can live increases, and the number of euthanasias decreases. It makes perfect sense.

So please, try to change your frame of mind to encompass open admission and limited admission shelters instead of “kill” and “no kill”. Spay and neuter your pets. And understand the important role each type of shelter plays, because we are all in this together.

Pro-life and Freedom of Speech

12 Apr

These pictures are from my university. They have been up all week, and this happens annually. Now, I understand that there is such a thing called freedom of speech listed in our constitution, so I agree they have every right to post these 20 foot tall pictures of dead fetuses. Here’s the problem:

Propaganda such as this only causes the separation between pro-life people and pro-choice people grow.  Pro-choice people go from “abortions should decrease, definitely, but still be a choice” to “kill more babies!” (which, obviously, is just a defense tactic), and thus pro-life people must get defensive. So basically, it causes pro-choice people to get defensive, and pro-life people to force their opinions on a large group of people.

And then we have things that are meant to be condescending to the opposing group, such as the above picture. Asking when we are human, and showing a picture of an elderly woman isn’t very helpful for your cause. Showing the opposite end of the spectrum – cells – also doesn’t help your cause, as pro-choice people already think that abortion should be a choice, and they will just use single cells as support for their argument.
Overall, I think these posters are completely ineffective as a method to sway a population to belief that abortion is wrong. Not to mention that our population is already so desensitized to gruesome images, that even that tactic is less likely to work.
Whats your opinion on posters such as these? Do you think this is an effective strategy?