One of DC’s most respected think tanks, the American Enterprise Institute, hosted the forum, “Saving International Adoption,” this past Friday.
The number of international adoptions to the U.S. has plummeted over the past 14 years. Had adoptions remained steady at their 2004 numbers, well over 100,000 children would have found welcoming homes in the U.S. over the past decade.
Some of these children may eventually have been adopted into local homes, although anti-adoption stigmas make adoptions few and rare in many parts of the world. Finding a family through adoption is virtually impossible for children with any deformity or special need, and the same is often true for other children as well.
Strong statistical and anecdotal evidence suggests that a large portion of the children denied international adoption never reach safe, nurturing family. Rather, significant numbers grow up in low-nurture institutions, die in childhood, face life on the streets, and/or are subject to human trafficking or other forms of exploitation.
The AEI forum explored reasons for the dramatic decline in international adoption and potential solutions.
While I didn’t agree with every idea expressed in the forum, I greatly valued each participant and their deep commitment to seeing children grow up in families.
The full forum is viewable here:
If you’d like to hear my initial remarks, they are about 12 minutes, starting at 25:50, below:
I especially enjoyed the discussion/Q&A — which included two self-described “liberal, secular economists,” a Jewish journalist/researcher, and a Christian. Each of us came with our own unique views, of course, but found immense common ground as well.
The discussion section runs from 38:40 to the end, here: