Monday, December 1, 2008

Prop 8 and its ilk, Foster Care

I can't stop being shocked and amazed at the passage of the various 'family protection' amendments in the recent election.  Whatever their opinion of the 'gay lifestyle' or homosexuality in general, I can't believe that anyone really believes that homosexual couples are dangerous to children.  Seriously, there are so many things that are really dangerous to children (Divorce, for one) that I can't imagine that anyone really believes this is the issue we should be pouring our resources into.   I feel like I have some right to speak on this issue because of the time I have spent caring for children that have been abused physically, mentally, and emotionally by good 'ole heterosexual couples (1 man AND 1 woman!).  What really drives me over the edge is the way that children are used as pawns in the game small-minded people play  in banning homosexuality.  The commercials that were aired during the campaign were disgraceful, showing pictures of children talking about how confusing it is to have two same-sex parents or equating homosexuals with pedophiles.  More disturbing than the amendments to ban marriage by homosexuals was the one in Arkansas that had the effect of banning homosexuals from being foster parents or adopting.  On the surface, these laws only prevent 'unmarried' people from serving in this manner, but the subtext is clear.  Stop thinking for a minute about homosexuality, what reason could there possibly be for preventing a single man or woman from adopting a child or serving as a foster parent?  I can't imagine how insulting this must be to single parents.  I have heard arguments that single parents or homosexual parents give children the wrong image of what a 'parent' should be.  Let me hit you with some knowledge.  Foster kids already have a wrong image of what parents should be.  'Parents', if they have any idea what that word means, are the people that hit you, the people who lay on the couch stoned while you starve to death, the people that let leave you at home alone with no water and no electricity while they go about their business.  If a foster parent, gay or straight, can get a kid to the point where they are ready to discuss ethics or sexual morality, they should be praised publicly and rewarded handsomely.  The fact that people who don't think it's appropriate to have homosexual parents taking care of foster children have obviously never even spoken with foster children.  Kids are too busy being amazed that they have food everyday, that they get to take showers (and that the water is hot!), that they might go through an entire day without being hit or being covered in their own feces.  This is reality folks.  Can you imagine the narrative of a child that pees their pants when they hear a door slam or asks you if you're coming back every time you walk out the front door.  How about someone that eats until they vomit because they have never been exposed to the concept of 'full' or 'enough'?  

I'm not saying every foster kid is like this, and we have certainly been lucky with what we have had to deal with.  What I'm saying is that unless you have had one of these children as a part of your life you had better shut the hell up.  Leave them out of the argument and thank your lucky starts that ANYONE wants to take care of these kids.  What do you think happens to the kids that 'age out' of the system at 18 never knowing anything other than emptiness? 

Alright, time to holster the soap box.   Here is a link to the Arkansas amendment on Ballotpedia and here is an article from someone that spoke at a civil rights march in protest to these types of amendments.


Staci said...

Amen, Chris!!! The ignorance of some people is astounding. I hate how many Christians are so eager to ban all gays from basic civil rights. It's ridiculous.
--Staci Plonsky

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