I don’t typically like to post about such controversial topics. However, I receive regular emails from the Child Welfare Information Gateway, and in reading one such email I was struck by two opposing news articles. They were both right at the top, one right after the other. The first two links, in fact.
The first link was to an article about a man who fought Florida’s ban on gay adoption, and as soon as it was lifted he proceeded to adopt two boys, brothers who had been in his home as foster children for a number of years.
Martin Gill began caring for these children in 2005, when they were just 1 and 5 years old. He and his partner gave them exactly what they needed, a loving home and devoted parents. The children grew and thrived in this home, however, when the parental rights of the boy’s biological parents were officially terminated and it came time for the children to be placed for adoption, Martin Gill and his partner were determined to not be suitable parents any longer. Simply because they are gay.
The second link was to an article regarding statements made by Florida’s new governor. Statements expressing how he disagrees with the lifting of the ban on gay adoption and his opinion that children should only be adopted by married couples.
Without getting into whether we personally believe homosexuality is right or wrong… Isn’t it supposed to be about finding homes for children? How can we say that gay parents are acceptable as foster parents, but not acceptable as adoptive parents? And seeing the exceptional care Martin Gill had already provided these children with, who can say that his sexual orientation makes him an unfit parent?
I understand that there needs to be restrictions on who can adopt. However, those restrictions should be in regards to the safety of the home being considered. Obviously children should not be placed in homes where they will be subjected to more abuse or neglect.
Let’s face it… we all have an opinion on the *right* way to live our lives. But if we were to sit down and compare notes, I would be willing to bet my *right* way is different then yours, at least in some ways. Whether we agree or disagree with the way another person lives their life, if they can provide a loving, nurturing home for a child, free from abuse, neglect, and substance abuse, then they should be considered suitable as adoptive parents.
Lifting restrictions on who can adopt only means more children will be adopted. Isn’t that the goal?