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Nathalie Carraway
Ms. Gardner
English 10, Period 1
3 May 2014

Gay Adoption: Equal Rights For All
In the United States alone, there are over 400,540 children without permanent families or
homes. This has continued to be a substantial issue; however, many people are turning to
adoption whether the reason for their choice be circumstantial or due to infertility. Unfortunately,
many children are unable to be adopted into a home when there is continuing discrimination
against gay adoption. Gay adoption is the adoption of children by homosexual guardians. The
issue of gay adoption is necessary to the continuity of equal rights among humankind. Gay
adoption has, and still is, being challenged by those who feel that the guardians sexual
preference would have a negative impact on the adopted children. This prejudice has shown
itself in the bills of religious adoption agencies that give private agencies the option to refuse
applicants based on their religious and social beliefs. Discrimination of adoptive parents based
on their sexual preference should not be allowed: there is no basis on which one can determine
that all homosexuals have qualities that deem them unfit to be a parent, there are no substantial
and credible sources which determine that this factor affects a childs mental or physical health
for the worse, and there is a devastating number of children in adoption agencies are in need of
all adoptive parents, no matter their background.
Many would argue that adoption agencies should be able to decide on their candidates
using the factor of sexual orientation because of the religious beliefs of the agencies. It is true

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that private agencies are able to exercise their own refusal of applicants under protection of
private discrimination. (US Const. amend. I). In places such as Illinois there have been attempts
to pass these types of bills. In an article in the Huffington Post, an online news database, Jen
Sabella new legislation. As Illinois Democratic Senator David Koehler states in the article, the
law would allow rejection of homosexual parents if acceptance of that application would
constitute a violation of the organization's sincerely held religious beliefs. (Sabella). To
summarize, many believe that those who run adoption agencies are entitled to free judgement
based on their religious ideals. Yes, private discrimination is legal according to the First
Amendment. However, this filter does not consider the prospective guardians eligibility, the
absence of negative effects on a child, and the dire need for adoptive parents.
Private discrimination can rule out some traits that are not accepted by certain religions,
such as homosexuality. But in many cases, this process does not account for the many
characteristics that make or do not make an eligible and fitting parent, an example being their
compassion or their trustworthiness. In this regard, sexual orientation becoming the sole
determining factor is creates a gaping flaw in the ability to find the most suitable parents. In a
specific case of two young boys, a gay man wished of the adoption of the two. According to the
Palm Beach Post, a daily newspaper in South Florida, Only Mr. Gill petitioned to adopt them.
The boys wanted him to be their dad. He was qualified in every way that mattered. But there was
that sexual orientation. (Ban Political Exploitation of Children). Despite his love and care for
the two boys, his sexual orientation caused an agency to deem him inappropriate to gain custody
of the children. To determine ones eligibility based on just sexual orientation ultimately
eliminates many desirable guardians while also can create a lesser focus on and a higher
possibility of passing an unfit parents such as one with history of criminal activity and substance

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abuse when one focuses on an insignificant characteristic. If the basis of private discrimination
rests solely on an involuntary factor, how could prospective adoptive parents possibly be chosen
for the best interest of a child?
At this point in time, research has not given substantial proof that any negative effects
result from the influence of homosexual parents rather than heterosexual parents. While studies
have been conducted in regard to the mental and physical effects of being raised in an
environment with a homosexual parent, the vast majority of the results are unreliable and
inaccurate. A study by Paul and Kirk Cameron, authors of Psychological Reports, a book which
studies the alleged negative effects of homosexual parenting, yielded that Children in 48 of the
52 families (92 percent) mentioned one or more problems. This survey was done on such a
low scale and from a nonspecific pool of families which allows room for skepticism on the
accuracy of these results. Several researchers have also determined from their studies over the
past two decades that empirical evidence gathered by several researchers... no difference from
heterosexual fathers in providing appropriate recreation, encouraging autonomy, maintaining
disciplinary guidelines or dealing with general problems of parenting. (Cameron). Despite many
common beliefs that there is a higher chance that the child will be homosexual, there is no
credible evidence which concludes that any traits of a child result from an upbringing with a
homosexual parent. If this claim was indeed proven, what would be wrong with being
homosexual? Pardon My Planet, a popular comic strip by Vic Lee, parodies the common
misconceptions of the effects of gay or lesbian parenting such as in the comic seen below. Sexual
orientation should not be seen as a detrimental trait in an adoptive parent, but a neutral one.

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The amount of children in need of a permanent home is incomprehensibly large and
continues to grow every day. According to The United Nations Childrens Fund, an organization
that provides humanitarian assistance to mothers and children, there are an estimated 153 million
orphans around the world in need of a home. (Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute).
Many gays and lesbians would be thrilled with the opportunity to give one of these children a
safe, loving, and supportive home. A professor in parenting and child development, Marinus H
van IJzendoorn claims that children raised in orphanages score an average of 20 points lower on
their IQ than those in foster care or a permanent home (CCAI). In addition, 40% of children wait
at least 3 years to be adopted from foster care (CCAI). These alarming statistics illustrate the
incredible amount of children in need of a home as well as the negative effects of being raised in
an institution such as an orphanage or adoption agency rather than a home. These children
desperately need loving families, many that can be provided by gay and lesbian parents.
Discrimination against gay adoption should be eradicated because of it bases itself upon
flawed foundation of judgement, it carries no credible support, and the need for adoptive parents

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creates a need for as many adoptive parents as possible--including gay and lesbians.
Discrimination against gay adoption undermines equal rights and creates judgement which has
no place in the evolving world. To think without judgement calls one to think about the best
interest of the child rather than the best interest of the agencys own morals.

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Works Cited

"Ban Political Exploitation of Children." Palm Beach Post. 31 Mar. 2013: A.19. SIRS Issues
Researcher. Web. 03 May. 2014.
Cameron, Paul, and Ellen C. Perrin. "Q: Does Adoption by Gay or Lesbian Couples Put
American Children..." Insight on the News. 22 Apr. 2002: 40-43. SIRS Issues Researcher.
Web. 03 May. 2014.
"Facts and Statistics." Congressional Coalition on Adoption Insititute. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 May
Lee, Vic. "Pardon My Planet." Weekly Story Book. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 May 2014.
Sabella, Jen. "Anti-Gay Adoption Bill Shot Down In Illinois Senate Committee." n.d.: n. pag.
The Huffington Post. Web. 03 May 2014.