We have all heard the mantra that a child needs to be raised by both and a mother and a father. The qualities contributed by a man and a woman are each vital to raising a well-rounded individual and therefore the idea of having two mothers or two fathers is simply unacceptable right? Well what about when a child does not have any parents? So now the real question emerges: Should GLBT people have the right to adopt children without having to go through any negative complications? The obvious answer is yes. Sexual orientation is just more of a label for a marital preference, which does not have any direct negative influence on parenting or nurturing. Stereotypes should not ignore the uniqueness of individuals when it comes to adopting a child. There are laws which complicate homosexual parenting and adoption. Laws banning adoption by gay and lesbian couples exist in multiple states across the country. These bans do more than prohibit same-sex couples from starting families; they sentence children to a lifetime alone in a world where plenty of eligible adoptive parents exist.
Homosexuals are not immoral individuals; being gay is not a mental disorder. Like heterosexuals they too are considered fully functioning members of our society. They go to school, go to work, and pay taxes just like heterosexuals do; homosexuals probably have deal with more difficulties doing all of these things due to our society being so negative towards homosexuality. There are no distinct qualifications for becoming a parent; however, we would consider that a good parent should have these characteristics: One that can provide their child with a safe environment, responsible, loving, and trustworthy, – none of which are exclusive to heterosexuals. Homosexuals and heterosexuals are both humans, which means they are both equal in their personalities and behaviors, the only difference between them is their sexual orientation; there is no good reason to deny them the right to have or adopt children. Many people in our society believe that gay men are “unfit as parents,” because two men do not make up a “traditional and equal family.” Instead many believe a “traditional family” should consist of a man and a woman. Also, many believe that two men will not be able to provide proper care for a child, just because of the perceived necessity of a female parent. “As sexual minorities, gay men have been exposed to dominant messages about their unfitness as parents. Which may affect how they construct their parental desires” (name, page #). ( WHYPARENTS&WHYNOW) . In some cases however, this may be true such as when adopting a newborn baby. Doctors often encourage couples to breastfeed their newborns and hold off the formula for as long as possible; breast milk is rich in nutrients and antibodies and it protects babies from illnesses since formula has a lack of antibodies and does not provide the protection against infections or illnesses (How breastfeeding benefits you and your baby). Men are obviously not able to breastfeed, because women are needed to provide the breast milk for the child. On the other hand, gay men are still able to adopt a newborn child. There are other ways they can provide for their child with breast milk. For example, there are many organizations that have women who are willing to provide breast milk for the ones in need. There is no need to say that a gay man is unfit to adopt a baby because of his lack to provide proper nourishment. There are other options available to anyone trying to adopt a baby.
Homosexuals have the same characteristics just as any heterosexual couple have, when it comes to adopting a child. Many gay men want to adopt but have a difficult time doing so, because of the laws in which stop them from doing so.
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According to the 14th amendment of the U.S. Constitution it states that all citizens are to be equal under law. United States as a country is built on the idea of freedom, equality and fairness; and by limiting adoption to homosexuals it is breaking its own ideology. Therefore GLBT people should be allowed to legally adopt without any complications, because they too have the legal right to do so. The legal status of gay adoption varies across the country. Unfortunately, “Three states - Florida, Mississippi, and Utah - have laws that explicitly prohibit homosexual individuals and/or couples from adopting children.” (same-sexstatelaws.com) In the Florida’s Statute it is clearly stated that a husband and wife jointly can adopt, but no person can adopt if that person is of another sexual orientation. Florida’s law does not prohibit gays or lesbians from serving as foster parents, but it does prevent homosexuals from adopting their foster child. In 2004 a suit was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, which included a gay man and his foster children. The most publicized story was about, Steven Lofton who raised three foster children, from infancy, each of whom tested positive for HIV at birth. Doe, the youngest child, tested positive for HIV and cocaine at birth and immediately was entered in the Florida foster care system. A private agency placed Doe in foster care with Lofton, whom already had experience treating HIV with his two other foster children. As time went on he grew to love and care for this child. When he filed for adopt for Doe, he refused to provide his sexual orientation and partner; whom he was living with. Due to the fact that he didn’t provide the required information, in which he thought was redundant, he was denied adopt based on his sexual orientation ( gay adoption florida). By child services doing this it presented the fact that a gay man was not able to adopt and that a child is better off in a home with two married, heterosexual parents. Whomever someone’s sexual partner is; is a personal choice that should have no demeanor on their qualification for neither adoption nor parenting. However, Lofton could have prevented all the problems by just completing the whole application for the adoption. If he did in fact do so, child services might have sided on his behalf. The Department of Children and Families want to insure that any individual who wants to adopt have their criminal and psychological background, their own childhood, divorces, previous children, etc, clear of any catastrophes. So in the long run they want to provide the children with the safest and best environment possible. Nonetheless, leaving out a personal matter such as ones sexual orientation should not jeopardize the entire adoption process.
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