Kids are different from grown-ups: they don’t know everything, they can’t take care of themselves, and they have much to learn. That’s why they need parents and caregivers — to teach them what they don’t know, take care of them, and keep real world distractions at bay so that they can concentrate on learning, growing, and maturing. Unfortunately, for a myriad of reasons, not all kids have families.
Whether their parents have passed on or their parents simply can’t care for them, there are a lot of kids who need to find some grown-ups to make them a part of their family. Luckily, there are a lot of grown-ups who, for a similarly varied number of reasons, are looking for a child to care for. If only we could somehow get these two groups together! It happens, occasionally — my neighbors adopted a darling little boy and you’d be hard pressed to find a set of parents who cared more for their son than they do.
The thing is, there are those in our society who would deny that little boy and those parents the joy of becoming a family just because the parents are two dads. That would indeed be a tragedy, as it would be in so many cases where wonderful gays and lesbians have adopted or become foster parents to children who needed them. It is also a tragedy that there are many more potential parents eager to open their home to children who need one but have been denied.
From now on, though, that will hopefully no longer be the case. Representative Pete Stark (D-CA) introduced a bill called the Every Child Deserves a Family Act (HR 3827) which would prohibit discrimination in foster care and adoption based on the sexual orientation, gender identification, or marital status of the potential parent. All I can say is it’s about damn time. There are a lot of kids out there that need families and prejudice is no reason to deny them the opportunity to have one.