More than anything I am struggling with shock and horror at Arkansas’s overwhelming passage of
PROPOSED INITIATIVE ACT NO.1
AN ACT PROVIDING THAT AN INDIVIDUAL WHO IS COHABITING OUTSIDE
OF A VALID MARRIAGE MAY NOT ADOPT OR BE A FOSTER PARENT OF A CHILD LESS THAN EIGHTEEN YEARS OLD.
I’ve bit my tongue in a lot of conversations over the last few months and tried to be very tactful and listening to opposing views about our recent election, but I am overwhelmed at the sheer indecency of this initiative and struggle to find words other than “evil” to describe my evaluation of it. I also realize that my soapbox is a little pointless because it’s already passed at this point. I am as much shocked at my own naivete in not realizing it would be passed so overwhelmingly.
Here are just a few of my thoughts:
This initiative bans ANYONE from being foster or adoptive parents that are not a man and woman legally married including single people or divorced people. I don’t know for sure, but the way it reads to me is that common-law married couples would be banned as well.
Jesus Christ would be banned from being a foster parent or adopting a child.
The initiative was instituted because there was already a law banning gay couples from fostering or adopting and it had already been deemed unconstitutional. Oh, well then, let’s re-write it to limit even MORE people from being eligible for taking in children who need homes. Good idea.
The supporters of this initiative submit that children are better off in a home with married man and wife parents. I believe that the absolute best thing for a child would be to live in a loving home with a mom and a dad. No duh. Congratulations, you’re a genius.
But are you really going to try to tell me that a child bouncing around in group homes as a ward of the state is better off than being adopted or receiving foster care in a loving home from qualified, evaluated people if they’re single parent, co-habitating couple, common-law couple, two mommies or two daddies? Give me a freakin’ break.
I can’t find it now, but last night I was reading about the Family Council of Arkansas’ position on this and they actually had the audacity to say they hoped this initiative would make more families make themselves available as foster/adoptive homes. How the hell does that work, Sherlock? Ban more people from being foster/adoptive parents and we’ll get more kids into foster care/adopted…good plan. you fail.
I know I’m just blowing steam because a) the initiative has passed already, b)I don’t even know what I could do about it. It just seems so ignorant and wrong and horrible that this has happened. I understand that many who probably voted for this didn’t take time to think about these implications, but were reacting to the “gay agenda” as it’s been characterized to us by any number of conservative groups. I’m not not even trying to open that can of worms.
It just seems shameful to me that a family advocacy group would push this political position without realizing that the ones who are going to feel the most effect of this initiative are going to be the motherless and fatherless children of this state who have had their opportunity for a loving parent(s) and home diminished just a little bit more.
A loving family, however it may be defined or made up is preferable to no family. And I’m not sure anybody would ever be able to convince me otherwise.
November 7, 2008 at 8:11 am
it seems like with all the yes/no for/against things on the ballot, a large percentage of people just tend to vote yes. i don’t know if they just want to think positive rather than negative, or if they think it’s only on the ballot because it must be a good idea. kind of like, well the search committee thinks this guy should be our new pastor, so we all vote for him as a formality.
anyway, everything yes/no question passed. it’s not really fair to the no position. they ought to word the ballot more neutrally, and i bet the results would have been different.
also, the act actually still allows single people to adopt as long as they aren’t cohabiting. (so, basically you can’t have a roommate i guess?) i don’t know where that leaves jesus, since he had no home…
also, i would guess/hope that the number of potential adopters excluded by this is relatively small…hopefully. i bet most people wanting to adopt are married couples anyway. and those who are excluded can probably still adopt from out of state?
November 10, 2008 at 6:09 am
Yep, Prop 1 is just about the dumbest thing we’ve passed in Arkansas in a long while. People need to think these things through before they vote for them.