The current Christianity Today carries an important article on the tragic growing politicization of adoption, particularly as a result of attempts by activists from the GLBT community to use laws and regulations to pressure faith-based adoption agencies to place children with gay and lesbian couples. What previously was presented by activists as an effort to secure the legal right of GLBT individuals to adopt is increasingly morphing into an effort to deny agencies the right to make placement decisions according to their convictions on what’s best for children. These attempts to limit freedom of conscience are troubling on many levels. If successful, the inevitable result will be a loss of diversity in agencies and service models. Leaving aside a host of other issues, the simple practical considerations are among the most disappointing: if government forces faith-based adoption agencies out of business, it will lose many of its very best partners in serving children that have no families. Furthermore, the natural next step is to add additional regulations that make it more difficult for families with Christian convictions to foster and adopt, as has already begun in states such as California. Those who argue that the most important concern is increasing the number of homes available for adoption should consider: while it is possible that these policies may increase gay adoptions modestly, this small boost would almost certainly never come close to making up for the number of Christian homes lost in the process. Those who stand the most to lose in this political gamesmanship are children in need of loving families. Let’s hope that, if nothing else, the age-old American commitment to freedom of conscience will help prevent policies that ultimately harm children.
January 4, 2010 by Jedd Medefind
January 18, 2010 by Jedd Medefind