Thursday, July 15, 2010

My Op-Ed Response to the New Jersey, RTL, Bar Association, and ACLU on their Troubling Statements about Being Adopted

Regardless of what position you take on NJ's bill, I think we can all agree that the "coalition" (NJ Catholic Conference, Lutheran Office of Governmental Ministry in New Jersey, NJ ACLU, NCFA, NJ Bar Assoc, and NJ Right to Life) formed to oppose it is hitting nasty lows instead of sticking to the facts.  When they're not marching into access legislation hearings referring to adoptees as "stalkers," they're submitting Op-Ed articles like this one designed to mislead the public and strike more fear in the hearts of legislators and voters based on the stereotype that adult adoptees want to pass legislation that will lower adoption rates and raise abortion rates.

I submitted a rebuttal to the Trenton Times to the Op-Ed article, as did many of you, and we can only hope that they will print our comments.  However, in case they won't, I thought I would post it here as well.

I wrote:
The Op-Ed article published July 11th, 2010 about birth record access quoted study findings out of context, mentioning both abortion and adoption rates. It continued on to speak only about adoption rates, leaving readers to assume that if an adoption rate is going down in a state, then the abortion rate must be going up. However, the Adoption Institute study actually concluded that variability in the abortion rates and adoption rates in access states showed that birth record access has no impact—other social factors do. Adoption rates are going down likely because of the shift in the social climate towards unwed motherhood and improved resources for poor families. The given quote was about making correlations not claiming a “cause effect.”
When we see adoption rates going down, it is irresponsible to lead the public to believe that women are having abortions instead. The majority of women experiencing unplanned pregnancies that bring them to term choose parenting. I would hate to think that this coalition is actually complaining about declining adoption rates because more women are choosing to keep their children.
The Op-Ed authors have continuously framed their anti-access argument around the stereotypes that Adult Adoptees are “disruptive” and wish to pass legislation that will cause undesirable effects on abortion and adoption rates. I cannot fathom the logic that says treating Adult Adoptees equally will “ruin” adoption but defaming adoptees, the individuals adoption is supposed to be about, won’t.
Photo credit: healingdream