Saturday, July 16, 2011

Christian Actions on Controlling Adoption

I’ve already touched on the subject of inconsistency among Catholics on family values in relation to IVF, but I should also attempt to confront a general hypocrisy amongst Christians on an issue that is as forgotten as the question of what happens to the children in the supposed global flood. Of course they died, but the question is why didn’t they speak about it in the bible and weep for that loss of basically innocent life, regardless of how corrupt their parents may have been? The issue I speak of is adoption and how this relates to the attitude of many Christians to deny, through legislation no less, the right to adopt of gay couples.

In Arkansas a bill that would have banned same sex couples from adopting orphaned children was struck down by the Supreme Court and many Christians insisted it was more of the gay agenda (whatever that means). It’s painful to think these people are able to resolve the apparent conflict of values an outsider could see. On the one hand, they care about “family” but on the other hand, they think gays have no right to have families by a relatively common option amongst gay couples. Apparently they don’t care if a gay couple hires a surrogate to give them a child through adoption that way, but if they want to adopt a child who has no parents these pro-family and pro life people will outright reject them 50% of the time or more. And why would they do this? Because they apparently think gays are unfit to be parents or they think that gay parenting will corrupt children. And I’d think any sane person who separates themselves from this political and moralizing paranoia would realize how painfully and willfully ignorant of facts these beliefs are.

Firstly, gays are just as fit to be parents in most situations. If you were talking about gay people who had problems apart from their sexual orientation that would make them unfit to be parents in the same way that straight people would be unfit to be parents, then I wouldn’t stop your opposition to their adopting children. But if you think just because they’re gay that they cannot raise a child, support them, nurture them, teach them morals and the like, then you’ve already prejudged all gays in this way as being inferior in terms of a practice, childrearing, that anyone can do, even by themselves, with directed effort. Family doesn’t require either biology or strict standards of sex or gender; it requires love and commitment to raising a child, sticking together as a general unit and community. And the notion that gays will either make children morally corrupt because they see that families can be other than the traditional family or will make the children gay themselves is even more embarrassing to be argued as scientific or philosophical. If I had grown up knowing about gays and same sex marriage, I don’t think I’d cease believing that I shouldn’t steal or murder or willfully deceive. Just because people can break a tradition of one form and yet maintain a tradition that’s as old as the human species in some sense does not mean that society starts to crumble. Like I said in “Gay Marriage Does Not Make Anarchy”, people don’t become less moral because they become more inclusive in one particular area. Just because we allow gays to marry does not mean that murder is suddenly okay and to even suggest it is despicable. The rightness or wrongness of murder has nothing to do with whether you think gay marriage is right or wrong. Why? Because murder violates a person’s basic right to live provided they don’t infringe upon others’ rights to live. Marriage, on the other hand, is primarily a legal issue but is nonetheless not something that should be restricted on the basis of gender specific traditions, but instead on a more basic standard of fidelity to a spouse (or spouses if we’re talking polygamy).

To jump to conclusions about the effects of parents’ sexual orientation in relation to a child’s sexual orientation in the future makes as much sense as suggesting that a child will be a certain religion just because they were raised in it. Children can understand their sexual orientation differently, indeed, but to say that an otherwise common straight child will insist they’re gay because they had gay parents is uncommon, if not unheard of in many cases. Sexual orientation is, for the most part, something inborn within someone, though there will always be confusions due to common misunderstandings we have about arousal and relations to the opposite or same sex. People can confuse infatuation for love, can mistake a natural arousal for actual attraction to a same-sex act or situation, such as showering naked with members of the same sex. To say people would be so confused about their own sexual orientation because people that are confident about their own get married and are also not the normal man/woman pairing gives humanity far too little credit in their ability to distinguish fantasy and speculation from reality.

And most importantly, the fixation of people like David Tyree on marriage as a means to procreate is the same line of thought that leads to kids having pre marital sex and then getting a shotgun wedding to cover it up, or getting an elopement and then buggering to their heart’s content. Marriage is not even primarily about child-rearing from a religious perspective necessarily, unless you focus purely on the physical results of a marriage. There’re also the mental aspects of unity and intimacy between the partners in the coupling and this can occur with same sex couples just as easily. And if marriage was purely about the possibility of having children, elderly couples unable to conceive or infertile heterosexual couples of any general age would not be doing as good a job as an everyday fertile couple of man and woman. To say that the physical nature or the normalcy of a coupling should be the defining point of its acceptability is to exclude even many “families” that have produced respectable citizens, including David Tyree himself. His father left his mother and she raised him herself, so is he any worse for the wear? Possibly in this unfounded fear of gays getting a basic right that he himself has should he want to marry a woman and have a family. I’m more than willing to bet he doesn’t think gays should adopt children either, and I’ve already touched on the correlation of gay marriage to anarchy and put it to rest. Suffice it to say, this man and the groups supporting him are still a decided minority, but also do serve as a general example to those like myself who are politically apathetic. If we don’t vote for and support these movements and legislations, then they’ll deny them and call it democracy. Democracy demands action, and that is what makes it frightening to those in power. So, until next time, Namaste, aloha and “rock the vote” (is that how it goes?)

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