Friday, August 01, 2003

Rights and Reason: The Vatican Opts for Orphanages over Gay Parents

I start with what I presume is a point of agreement with the Cathoic Church. The ideal situation for a child is to live with a loving birth mother and a loving birth father in a stable marriage. However, the question of adoption exists because this is sometimes not feasible. Ideally, every child put up for adoption would be adopted by a loving, married heterosexual couple with the means to take care of the child. Since there is a shortage of such couples willing to adopt, that is not feasible, and very broadly any loving, responsible, permanent parent or couple is an improvement over the uncertain state of foster care and orphanages.

"As experience has shown, the absence of sexual complementarity in these unions creates obstacles in the normal development of children who would be placed in the care of such persons. They would be deprived of the experience of either fatherhood or motherhood."

So, by the decree of the Vatican, we should deny them both fathers and mothers. How compassionate.

"Allowing children to be adopted by persons living in such unions would actually mean doing violence to these children..."

It is staggering that the Vatican chooses to describe an orphan child being adopted by a gay couple as "doing violence to these children," given the American Church's decades-long record of leniency with pedophiles. Suffice to say that on the issue of the treatment of children, the Church lacks credibility.

"...doing violence to these children, in the sense that their condition of dependency would be used to place them in an environment that is not conducive to their full human development."

Whereas, apparently, orphanages and foster care are entirely conducive to their full human development.

By the way, "Experience has shown..."? There is a body of experience of children adopted by or raised by gay couples? If not, the entire passage is rendered to be, as the British say, bollocks. Reason might indicate, logic might dictate, but to the best of my knowledge there haven't been a whole lot of gay couples raising children in the past couple of millenia to provide a body of data to support a paragraph which begins "Experience has shown..."

What experience (thousands of years of recorded history) does indicate is that lifelong celibacy is an unnatural and deviant lifestyle. ("...a man shall leave his father and mother and be united with his wife, and they will become one flesh." Gen 2:24) Logically, the rejection of sexuality would tend to attract those whose sexuality for whatever reason is not healthy and who feel a need to escape from it. Great care should be taken when entrusting children to the care of such persons, as the code of celibacy collapses the distinction between healthy and deviant sexual behavior, both classified as regrettable human failings.

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