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Debate: Gay adoption

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Should gay couples be given the same legal rights as heterosexuals in adopting children?

Background and context

At present, the world and individual countries are as divided with regard to adoption as to other area of gay rights. As of 2000, four states in the USA (Arkansas, Florida, Mississippi and Utah) have specifically outlawed gay adoption, as have some Scandinavian countries (Denmark, Norway, and Iceland) that show an otherwise lenient attitude to same-sex relationships. By contrast, the National Adoption Week in the UK in October 2000 saw a drive to encourage gay couples to adopt, in order to find homes for the thousands of children seeking parents. The 2002 Adoption and Children Act allowed unmarried couples in England and Wales, including same sex partners to apply for adoption jointly.

Contents

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Natural: Is being brought up by a same sex couple natural?

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Yes

  • Children do not need distinct male and female parental role-models What children need first is love, compassion, and care from their parents. In addition, children are highly influenced by their social environment as much as their parents, making it unreasonable to place such a high importance on the attributes that parents display.


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No

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Tradition: Should promotion of the traditional nuclear family be avoided?

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Yes

  • A changing society should not cling to traditional family models. Society is changing, and the traditional idea of the nuclear family with married mother and father is no longer the only acceptable alternative. The reason that many countries are beginning to award legal rights to gay couples is because the stability of such relationships is now recognised. There is no reason, therefore, why such couples cannot provide a stable and loving upbringing for children.
  • Nuclear families are failing; can hardly be held up against gay adoption. Of all families in Australia, 22% of them are single parent families. Few will fully establish a child's potential. Over 45,000 Australian marriages will end in divorce, few of these will be families. So, it is wrong to promote the nuclear family when it is failing so badly, and it is wrong to hold-out on gay adoption in favor of the nuclear family, for the same reason.
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No

  • Opposing gay adoption preserves traditional family as ideal for child-rearing. Just as married couples receive tax benefits and unmarried mothers may suffer cuts in welfare, legal prohibition of adoption by gays is a natural step towards this ideal. The traditional nuclear family is still an ideal that should be clung to, and which deserves the protection and motivation of the state. Evolution and nature has shown that the natural development of the young is aided by both these influences.
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Natural: Does something being "Natural" imply that it is preferable?

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Yes

  • "Natural" label doesn't imply a preferable choice. Humanity and society engage in many acts that could very easily be described as unnatural, or artificial. This doesn't mean that these are in any was worse. Natural is not equal to superior, and artificial is not equal to inferior.
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No

  • Children do better with mother and father role models - Children benefit from a balance of male and female, differentiated role models. The unique characteristics of men and women are important to impart on children. Same-sex marriage fundamentally undermines this balanced approach to child-rearing.
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Gay influence: Do gay parents influence children to become homosexual?

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Yes

  • A child’s primary role models are his or her parents. Bringing a heterosexual child up in a gay household gives them a distorted view of a minority sexuality, just as a girl brought up by two men would fail to benefit from a feminine influence.
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No

  • Some babies are born with a predisposition to homosexuality (both human and in other races), and their upbringing will not be affect their sexuality. Attempting to suppress this genetic predisposition has resulted in great misery for many people. Rather, we should accept this and look to embrace all gay people fully – which must include celebrating gay role models, especially as responsible parents.
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Quality: Are homosexual parents of equal quality in raising children?

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Yes

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics and all of the major professional organizations with expertise in child welfare have issued reports and resolutions in support of gay and lesbian parental rights. "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Parented Families - A Literature Review prepared for The Australian Psychological Society": Judith Stacey, of New York University: "Rarely is there as much consensus in any area of social science as in the case of gay parenting, which is why the American Academy of Pediatrics and all of the major professional organizations with expertise in child welfare have issued reports and resolutions in support of gay and lesbian parental rights."
  • Children are currently being responsibly reared by gay couples, where one of the partners is a biological parent. Allowing adoption by the other merely confers legal rights on an already successful, if informal, family model.
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No


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Alternatives: Can gay parenting be superior to some of current alternatives?

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Yes

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No

  • Gay marriage should be compared against average marriages; not worst case ones. All of the arguments negating this question are compared against the dysfunctions occurring in worst case heterosexual marriages.


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Homophobia: Will the children of gay parents be able to deal with societal homophobia?

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Yes

  • Children raised by homosexuals may become more tolerant individuals. American Academy of Pediatrics - "growing up with parents who are lesbian or gay may confer some advantages to children. They have been described as more tolerant of diversity,"


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No

  • Children adopted by gays are subjected to homophobia/prejudices Homophobic language and behaviour is still common in society. Placing a child too young to have an opinion of their own in the care of a gay couple exposes them to this prejudice, and subjects them to ridicule or violence. Whatever ideal we might have, the psychological and physical welfare of the child must come first.
  • Homosexuals teach a tolerance toward dysfunctionality. Homosexuals inherently champion every dysfunctional cause as a so-called right, the result of which has infected all of society with tolerating dysfunction


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Religion: Is gay adoption allowable in the face of religious opposition to gay marriage?

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Yes


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No

  • There are some rules to religion. Everyone in the world who has faith in religion must always follow certain religion rules. In fact, none of the major religions explicitly states that homosexuality is something positive, or at least tolerated.
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Pro/con resources

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Yes

"Europe: Gay Adoption Ruling Advances Family Equality". Human Rights Watch. January 24th, 2008

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No


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Pro/con videos

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Yes


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No

See also

External links and resources

Books:

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