In Florida there are 3,400 kids waiting in foster care and the state’s gay adoption ban is helping keep them there.
It is illegal for gays or lesbians to adopt children in Florida because of a bill passed in 1977. Sen. Curtis Peterson, the bill’s sponsor, said at the time the law was introduced to send this message to lesbians and gay men, “We are really tired of you. We wish you’d go back in the closet.”
This is clear evidence that the bill was founded illegally. It was not created because the legislators thought gays and lesbians were incapable of raising children. It was founded because the sponsors had prejudices against their lifestyle.
Gays and lesbians are human beings also. They should have all inalienable rights heterosexuals possess.
Last year, nine of the legislators who voted for the ban signed written statements from the American Civil Liberties Union saying “We were wrong.”
If they realized their mistake, why can’t the rest of the state?
There is no proof gays and lesbians cannot be good parents. Even Carol Hutchinson, the state’s leading official overseeing adoption policy, opposes the ban.
25 percent of all adoptions out of foster care go to single parents. So that means the state of Florida thinks it’s okay for children to grow up in single parent households rather than one with two parents?
Gays and lesbians are allowed to care for children in long-term foster care and guardianship but they can’t be adoption sponsors. Right, that makes sense.
There is no restriction against child or substance abusers in Florida’s adoption guidelines. Of course. They should be the number one choice to begin with.
The nation’s leading child advocacy groups such as the Child Welfare League of America and the North American Council on Adoptable Children are against this ban. Yet another obvious reason to kill the ban.
Children should not be denied the right to adoption because of adults’ biases. Whether the parent is gay, straight or bisexual, they are a parent for a needy child.
Dominique Drake, 18, is a freshman business student from Cleveland. She is The Famuan’s Deputy Opinions Editor. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.