Gays and adoption of children: should this be allowed?
Gays and adoption of children: should this be allowed?
Homosexuality has been a relatively hot issue since time immemorial. In most cases, issues pertaining to the rights of gay people and what they should be allowed to do have always arisen. This is especially because people cannot seem to clear out the line between permissiveness and infringing on individuals’ rights. Right from the legalization to their rights, to adopt children or even join some professions, debate has been rife. This paper aims at examining the various arguments and counterarguments pertaining to the adoption rights of gay people. The position of the author is that gay people should be allowed to adopt children once the authorities are satisfied that they are fit. Adoption criteria should not be based on an individual’s sexual orientation thus gay couples should be allowed to adopt child children.
The issue of homosexuality has been controversial since time immemorial. This is because of the fact that, an individual’s sexual orientation has a bearing on the rights and privileges that he or she is entitled to in many parts of the world. It is noteworthy that while some people agree that gay people should be enjoying the same rights as straight people, equally many people suggest that such an act would be tantamount to rewarding or encouraging the “uncouth” behavior. In this case, the opponents opine that there should be no incentive for such behavior. This stand is mainly taken by the conventionalists or traditionalists, especially in the churches. One of the most controversial issues pertaining to homosexuality is adoption of children. It is noteworthy that the main aim of allowing adoption of children is to safeguard the adopted child’s rights (Ali 13). In essence, the question arises on whether the adoption of a child by an “abnormal” or gay couple would be tantamount to an infringement of his basic rights. Obviously, varied people have varied opinions about the issue with some seeing nothing wrong about it, whereas others see nothing right in the adoption. This paper aims at looking at claims for and against allowing gay couples or homosexuals to adopt children. Three claims and counterclaims have been examined on the issue.
An individual’s capacity to raise a child is not determined by his sexual orientation. Homosexuals have as much capacity to bring up children as any other adults or parents. It is imperative that individuals understand that being a homosexual does not imply that one is a depraved individual. Homosexuality is not a mental disorder. In this case, homosexuals are considered as members of the society who are functioning fully in all aspects (Glazer and Drescher 187). They attend schools, work and pay taxes just like all other individuals. While there are no unique qualifications for being a parent, many individuals would say that a parent should be capable, loving, responsible and trustworthy among other qualities. It is noteworthy that these qualities are not exclusive to individuals due to their sexual orientation (Bozett and Sussman 233).
The only fundamental difference between homosexuals and heterosexuals is their sexual orientation, which does not affect their capacity to raise kids. It is imperative that all individuals accept that regardless of their sexual orientation, homosexuals are equal to other straight people as far as their behavior and personalities is concerned. The only issue that separates them is their sexual orientation. In essence, there is manifestly no ground for denying homosexuals or any other individuals their rights to adopt or have children. In addition, whosoever an individual decides to go to bed with is essentially a personal choice that does not determine his or her capacity or ability to bring up a child properly (Fields 68). It would, therefore, be wrong for gay couples to be denied the same rights of parenting as other members of the society. Such actions would amount to exhibition of blatant homophobia or an idea that individuals would somehow be inferior parents simply because of their sexual orientation (Ali 34). This absurd ideal can only be eradicated through exposure. It is imperative that people view gay couples as just as competent in making satisfactory parents as straight people if not better placed than them.
Parenting is not limited to having a biological father and mother.
In addition, if individuals are exposed to a homosexual lifestyle, there would be a decrease in varied forms of bigotry such as homophobia. Individuals who oppose such arrangements are oblivious of the fact that parenting is not in any way limited to having a biological father and mother. It is noteworthy that a third of children in the United States have been brought up in one-parent rather than two-parent households (Mallon 45). In addition, the 2000 Census carried out in the United States showed that 22 percent of gay male couples and 33 percent of lesbian couples had at least a child below 18 years of age living in their homes (Brodzinsky and Pertman 234). The statistics are an indication of changing times and societies where quite a large number of kids grow up under non-biological parents (such as gay couples), as well as single parents. There has been no indication that they are lousy parents and, in which case there are no grounds for denying them the rights to adopt or have children.
A child with homosexual parents is deprived of the love of one parent, thereby affecting his overall development. However, opponents of the idea of gay couples adopting children opine that such an arrangement would affect the overall development of the child. The ideal family environment is one where the child can feel the affection and love of the mother and father. It is imperative that a child is brought up in a real family set-up, where both the mother and the father complement the various essential factors and aspects (Ali 65). These aspects and factors aid in the development of the child into an asset in the society. In a family set-up that is composed of homosexual individuals, there is a high likelihood that the adopted child will be misguided especially in the early stages of development. This is especially having in mind that such a marriage goes against all the fundamental laws of nature pertaining to procreation (Abigail 197). It is decidedly okay for an individual to lead his or her life according to his personal choice. However, this right should not extend to spoiling the adopted kid’s future so as to satisfy one’s fantasies and whims. It is imperative that the laws of adoption be made stringent so as to control such weird possibilities. In essence, adoption of any child should only be allowed when the concerned authorities are wholly certain that the adopted child’s best interests have been safeguarded, as well as those of the society as a whole (Ghazala 117).
A parent’s sexual orientation has little or no bearing on the child’s sexual orientation. It is absurd to insinuate that gay parents are likely to socialize their adopted children to take up the social orientation. This is especially having in mind that, research has shown that an individual’s sexual orientation is pegged more on their genetic make-up rather than their socialization. In essence, an individual’s sexual orientation is not a matter of personal choice but rather genetically determined. This, therefore, means that the child would not in any way be influenced to become homosexual or take up homosexual behaviors simply because they have gay parents. It would only be possible for such a thing to occur if their genetic make-up orients them to homosexuality (Abigail 67). In addition, studies have shown that as much as there is some socialization that takes place at home, most of the socialization takes place outside the home in areas such as schools, churches and others. In this case, the child stands higher chances of being socialized into homosexuality (if such a thing was possible) outside the home than inside. In essence, denying gay couples the right to adopt children is merely a smokescreen for other forms of discrimination, rather than based on any fundamental arguments.
Sufficient measures are put in place to weed out individuals who are unfit to adopt a child, who do not necessarily include homosexuals.
Additionally, adoption is a lengthy and expensive process that aims at establishing whether an individual, family or couple is capable of bringing up the child in question without infringing on his rights. The process weeds out individuals who are legally or even emotionally unfit to adopt. In essence, denying gay people the right to adopt children is tantamount to assuming that they are criminals or mentally unfit, which does not have to be the case at all (Mallon 167). There has not been any proof as to any link between an individual’s sexual orientation and criminal background or sanity and mental aptitude. In addition, there does not exist any proof that children, whether biological or otherwise of homosexuals would be harmed or injured by the parents’ the sexual orientation.
Children with homosexual parents have as much self esteem as their counterparts with heterosexual parents, and are less prone to stereotypes. As pertaining self-esteem and other forms of development, numerous studies have consensus on the fact that children growing up in same-sex families do as well as their counterparts in heterosexual marriages (Brodzinsky and Pertman 113). In fact, the studies showed that the children did better in self-esteem and discipline, and had few psychological difficulties at school or home. Same-sex parents have contact with social support and their extended families. They also have more equitable labor distribution than their heterosexual counterparts, which enhances the upbringing of the child. In addition, studies show that children brought up by gay couples show more empathy towards social diversity. They are also less restricted by gender stereotypes than children in with heterosexual parents. These studies also indicate that a parent’s sexual orientation has no quantifiable effect on the parent-child relationship or even the children’s mental health (Jay and Young 97). In fact, all-female parental teams are said to be more involved in their children’s lives and have more harmony in their parenting approaches than the heterosexual parenting. This shows that denying gays the right to adopt children has no fundamental backing.
Children adopted by gay parents are likely to become gays themselves since homes are the primary socialization environments. While the socialization of children is bound to take place in other areas, it is imperative that people acknowledge that the home environment is of utmost importance in shaping their behavior as adults including their sexual orientation. In addition, while there may be a connection between an individual’s sexual orientation and his genes, there is an equal chance that the children will try to imitate their parents’ sexual tendencies. In any case, even the Holy Bible tells individuals to train a child on the way that he should follow, and he will never depart from it when he is old. In essence, homosexuals would train their adopted child to take up their ways and be just like them. In any case, the adopted child would not have or experience a proper parental of one of the parents (Cameron 233). Children are always quick to learn from the actions of their parents and; therefore, they would have no alternative but to follow their parents’ example. In addition, studies have shown that there is a colossal difference between heterosexual and non-heterosexual parenting. It is noteworthy that children who are brought up by gay people stand a high chance of becoming promiscuous, sexual and gender confusion, as well as suffering emotional and depression difficulties.
The stability of homosexual relationships is questionable increasing the trauma that the adopted children go through and affecting them psychologically. Homosexual relationships are also considerably more short-lived and less stable than heterosexual relationships. Research conducted on population registers in Sweden and Norway, which incorporated same-sex partnerships that are legally registered, showed that gay male couples are 1.5 times more likely to divorce than heterosexual couples (Cameron 226). Homosexual female couples are 2.67 times more likely to break up as their heterosexual married counterparts. For the adopted children, such instability and short-lived nature leads to a high household transition rate in homes with homosexual parents. It is noteworthy that adopted children have already undergone a number of traumatic transitions, in which case frequent transitions would lead to high psychosocial maladjustment and psychological harm.
By denying gay people the right to adopt children, one would be discriminating against them, as well as depriving orphaned children the warmth of a home. In the society that we live in today, discrimination on any basis has a negative connotation. The American declaration of independence and human rights has insinuated that never again should an individual be discriminated against due to his color, creed, gender, race, religion and other basis. In essence, denying the gay people the right to adopt children is an infringement of their rights. In addition, it is noteworthy that the world has more than 16.2 million double-orphans who do not have either parent (Brodzinsky and Pertman 114). It is fundamentally inhuman to allow these children to remain homeless or without families while it would be possible for them to grow up in presumably stable, loving homes. In addition, on a Cost-Benefit Analysis, these orphans cost the state much more than they would do in case they were brought up in homes, whether by heterosexual or homosexual parents (Burns 245).
In adoption, safeguarding the safety of the child is paramount and comes before the monetary value. While it is understandable for gay people to tag on their rights in the debate pertaining to their adoption rights, it is noteworthy that the adopted child’s safety child overrides the adopting parent’s rights (Fields 117). In essence, the issue should not be about whether their rights to adopt children are being infringed on, but rather, how safe are adopted children in such homes. Research shows that more children are abused and molested in gay families than in heterosexual families. In addition, tagging on the economic basis of the adoption borders on the absurd. It is noteworthy that while it may be relatively cheaper to have the child brought up by a gay parent than being supported by the state, the negative effects on the lives of such children are immeasurable. This is especially in case the child was to be sexually molested by the gay parent. It is imperative that people acknowledge that love and affection from any parent is not quantifiable and, therefore, cannot be replaced by any amount of money.
In conclusion, the homosexuality debate has been and promises to be controversial in the foreseeable future. This is especially on the debate as to whether gays or homosexuals should be allowed to adopt children. On the one hand, proponents of the adoption opine that the gays have as much capacity to bring up children as any other parent or adult since one’s sexual orientation is not a determinant of his or her parenting abilities. In addition, they opine that the parents’ sexual orientation would not have a bearing on the child’s sexual orientation since such tendencies are linked to one’s genetic composition.
Moreover, denying them the right to adopt children is tantamount to an infringement of their rights and denies the children an opportunity to have a proper home. This is especially having in mind that, children in adoption agencies would not care whether they are brought up by homosexual or heterosexual parents as long as they have a proper home. However, opponents opine that the adopted child’s overall development would be severely affected. In addition, children take up the example of their parents and imitate their ways, in which case they would be likely to take up homosexual tendencies due to sexual confusion. In addition, the safety of the child to be adopted is of greater importance than the rights of the gay couple in which case the question of rights infringement should not be arising. In any case, more children with gay parents have been sexually molested than in straight families. In addition, a parent’s love cannot be quantified and, therefore, the adoption should not be pegged on the financial aspect.
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