The issue of adoption has caused much controversy in the United States. There are people who are for it and people who are against it. Each side uses many arguments to defend in what they believe.
People who believe that gay adoption is bad say that letting homosexuals adopt children is bad for the children and it harms them. According to a study done by Paul and Kirk Cameron, children in 48 out of 52 families being raised by homosexuals experience problems that include hypersexuality, instability, molestation, and domestic violence. There are also clinical reports of psychiatric disturbances of children with homosexual parents. In 1996 the U.S government did a sex survey. That survey found that the oldest lesbian was 49 years old and that the oldest gay was 54 years old. This survey shows that children raised by homosexuals are more likely to lose a parent to death at a young age. People who are against gay and lesbian adoption also say that children raised by homosexuals are worse off in school than children raised by heterosexual parents. In a study done by Sotirois Sarantakos in 1996, children of homosexuals were the least popular, they experienced the lowest level of parental involvement, and they had parents with the lowest expectations. Another reason people say that homosexual adoption is bad is because according to the Family Research Institute and the Family Research Council gay men are more likely to molest children than straight men are.
There have been many events that have happened to make it illegal for gays and lesbians to adopt children. The state of Florida has banned gay and lesbian adoption since 1977. New Hampshire also bans gay and lesbian adoption and has since 1987. In Texas and Indiana bills have also been introduced to ban gays and lesbians from adopting. Also, in the state of Nebraska homosexuals are not allowed to be foster parents since a law was passed in 1995. The states of Mississippi and Utah ban gay and lesbian couples from adopting, but since those states only lets married couples adopt, single gays and lesbians cannot adopt children either. The state of Arkansas doesn’t ban gay and lesbian adoptions specifically but they have regulations that prevent it. The states of Alabama, Oregon, Tennessee, and Virginia have all introduced bills that would restrict the parenting rights of gay couples. Lastly, Conservatives in Congress are also expected to introduce a bill to ban gay and lesbian adoption in Washington D.C.
People who agree with gay and lesbian adoption have done many studies to prove that it does not harm kids. The American Psychology Association says “no scientific evidence that parenting effectiveness is related to parental sexual orientation: lesbian and gay parents are as likely as heterosexual parents to provide supportive and health environments for their children.” There has also been research gathered by experts such as F.W Bozett, and R.L Barrett that says there is no difference between homosexual and heterosexual fathers in providing recreation, encouraging autonomy, maintaining disciplinary guidelines, or dealing with general problems of parenting. Other experts such as D.K Flaks and S. Golombok and done research comparing mothers and they have found that lesbian mothers function normal on interviews and psychological assessments, and their scores on standardized measures of self-esteem, anxiety, depression, and parenting stress are the same as scores from heterosexual mothers. Lastly, the American Academy of Pediatrics concludes:
“A growing body of scientific literature demonstrates that children who grow up with one ore two gay and/or lesbian parents fare as well in emotional, cognitive, social, and sexual functioning as do children whose parents are heterosexual. Children’s optimal development appears to be influenced more by the nature of the relationships and interactions within the family unit than by the particular structural form it takes.”
All of the studies done have never showed any risk whatsoever to children as a result of growing up in a family with one or more gay parents.
Gay and lesbian activists have pushed for many changes to allow homosexual adoption. The American Civil Liberties Union is preparing a lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of Florida’s ban on gay and lesbian adoption. The states of California, Connecticut, and Vermont have also passed pro-gay adoption laws. And the state of Pennsylvania passed a law that said gays and lesbians can adopt their partners’ children.
Also, many people are beginning to change their mind about gay adoption and realize that it doesn’t harm kids. The Child Welfare League of America says that sexual orientation does affect a person’s ability to care for a child. Also, the American Psychiatric Association has dropped homosexuality from its list of mental disorders and they agree with homosexual adoption.
Homosexual adoption has caused much disagreement within the United States. There have been many court cases and new laws to ban gays and lesbians from adopting. But now gay activists are starting to fight back. They are starting to fight back to make homosexual adoption legal in all of the states. There are many arguments to each side, but everybody needs to make their own decision about this issue.