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Florida court clears the way for gay adoption

In 2004, Frank Gill opened his home as a foster parent to two young brothers. The children are adoptable, and Gill really wants to adopt them. But until today, he was not allowed to. Frank Gill is gay.

In 1977, Florida passed a law prohibiting homosexual individuals from adopting children. But on Tuesday, Judge Cindy Lederman ruled that the law was unconstitutional. Furthermore, she said it was irrational. This ruling underscores a September ruling that essentially said the same thing, but has not had a practical impact.

Immediately, state attorneys said they would appeal the decision.

Florida, of course, is not the only state with such restrictions. In fact, just this November, Arkansas voters passed a ban on any unmarried person from adopting or even fostering a child. I sincerely believe that most of the supporters of these bans are concerned for the safety and welfare of the kids. They are afraid that unscrupulous parents will adopt children for unsavory reasons. It’s the same logic that did not allow a man to coach my son’s baseball team since he had no relative (a son, grandson, brother, nephew, etc.) on the team. There are, unfortunately, a few sickos who would take advantage of needy kids.

However, I believe that this is the exception, not the rule. And I have said many times that it is unfortunate we have to pass laws because of the exceptions. For example, most of us would never kill anyone, even without a law. But they pass a law for the exceptions among us.

My politics are uber-conservative. But I believe that this kind of ban is wrong. For one thing, the reality is that there are not enough adoptive parents for kids beyond the toddler years or foster homes for wards of the state. I also strongly feel that birthmothers should have the right to choose any adoptive family. It’s the way most adoption agencies within the US operate. If a teen mom wants to select a gay couple, she should be allowed to. Finally, when it comes to children in state custody, I just know there are not enough willing homes. Like I said, there might be a few people out there who want to hurt a child, but I don’t think they are the rule. And if you have ever been close to an adoptive family, you know the state leaves no stone unturned. Every aspect of their lives is scrutinized to make sure they are a good home. I don’t think there will be too many pedophiles missed in this “vetting” process. It’s a numbers game. I’m inclined to believe that more children will be hurt by not having a home than will be hurt by parents with evil motives.

Now, one other aspect is that people who feel homosexuality is morally wrong do not want gay people adopting in order to “recruit” new gays. Maybe this happens sometimes. I wouldn’t like it if it did. However, in the end, I think that leaving children without a home is worse than the possibility of them being raised by someone who is influencing them against their nature.

I would hope that if you feel “someone else’s” home isn’t the right place for a child, you will step out and provide the home you think kids should have. I don’t mean that in a sarcastic way. I am quite sincere. Thousands of families consider taking in an orphan every year. If only 1 family in 500 followed through, then all 115,000 kids in the US foster system would have a home. But even if you did restrict adoptions to only certain types of families, let’s say Christian families, only 1 household from every 4th church would need to adopt a child (there are over 450,000 churches in the US).

I am not being critical. (My husband and I have never adopted or taken in a foster child. We had to deal with some serious health issues.) I just urge others to not be critical. I say, let gay households take in an orphan. If you disagree, consider whether you can take in that child instead.

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