Someone needs to rewind the story of Greek girl “Maria” given a DNA test by authorities because she had blonde hair and blue eyes, while her Roma (gypsy) parents had darker complexions. The irony is, who looks less like a biological match now? Pictured is Maria’s biological mom, Sasha Ruseva.
Could you imagine if every child who passed through U.S. police services received an up-and-down look over – a sort of genetic profiling if you will? DNA testing would become downright routine if authorities think children and their parents don’t look alike. Human Rights advocates would go bananas — as they should.
You might recall an extreme case of “But-she-doesn’t-look-like-your-daughter?” that I wrote about last month, “Jailed Because of Their Transracial Adoption?”. In Qatar, authorities immediately suspected an American girl’s parents of murder (organ harvesting was one reason cited), because surely they would not have adopted the African child simply as a way to parent. For this case, all of the documentation in the world still hasn’t resolved the charges and the parents remain in prison still.
There’s something satisfying to me that the little blonde girl’s biological mom is just as brown as the mother who was raising her. The bottom line is that descendents can look quite diverse from their parents. It’s challenging enough to carry a child through town when he/she doesn’t look like you. Personally, I’m asking almost a dozen times a day about my foster daughter’s DNA. “Is she yours?”, “Are you babysitting?” and “Where is her mother?” are innocent enough, but the questions are wearing.
Maybe the international children’s rights communities need to come up with a standard to protect kids from the hysteria associated with our new technology to test genetic relations. Note to self: carry my daughter’s adoption records with me in my passport.
More blog posts from Rebecca: