Before the 1850s, adoption was an informal process where all the parties knew each other. The first adoption law passed in Texas was in 1850 and it required the adoption process to be filed with the county clerk. Adoptions were originally designed to help infertile, middle-class, and largely white couples but over time adoption process were forced to change to adapt to social needs. These changes have been occurring due to a shortage in adoption.
Same sex families aspire to have a family of their own just like heterosexual couples whether it be through adoption, foster care, artificial insemination, or other resources. And because of the shortage in adoption, states and the nation have started to recognize these marriages and made adoption one of the top choices to helping them form a family. It has become important that both parents become recognized. The second parent has been gaining recognition mostly because if something happens to the first parent the states do no want for the child to go back to a foster home.
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Many myths surround same sex marriages. The most common one is that many believe is that children who grow up with same sex couples will not grow up to be as successful as children in heterosexual marriages. Children are going back and forth in foster homes which has been causing more mental health issues. The children living in this situation are at greater risk of emotional problems, delinquency, substance abuse, and academic problems. Some people also believe that just because a child grows up with same sex parents they will also grow up to be gay or lesbian.
Texas is a conservative state. Our ideal image of a family is one consisting of a mother and father with biological children. Texans as a state chooses to live by the norms of society leading to the discrimination towards same sex couples. Members of the LGBT community are cataloged as immoral based on the religious beliefs of society and they have also been said to have a mental illness because of their sexual preferences.
Same sex marriage acceptance has been a controversial topic for the last few years that has slowly been gaining acceptance. Same sex couples have been fighting to have the same recognition and rights as a heterosexual marriage. These couples have held protests, conventions, and have filed a considerable number of lawsuits towards various government institutions and others to have what they consider their rights also recognized.
In the case of James Obergefell v. Richard Hodges in Ohio, the plaintiff Obergefell along with other same sex couples from the states of Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, and Tennessee sued their respective state agencies to challenge what they believed were their constitutional rights. This case led to the historic event that occurred on June 26, 2015 when the Supreme Court declared same sex marriage legal in all fifty states on the same terms and conditions of the opposite sex couples. This meant that the Supreme Court agreed with the Constitution stating, that the right to marry is fundamental under the 14th Amendment, and that it is guaranteed by the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause.
The 14th Amendment was originally meant to grant citizenship and equal civil rights to slaves. Before 1996, the 14th Amendment did not fully protect or give rights to the LGBT community. After the strike down on a Colorado state constitutional amendment, the Supreme court started using the term fundamental rights. The government wanted to keep the LGBT rights to minimum protection.
The ban of same sex marriage was lifted by this verdict, but the Texas Attorney General’s office argued that marriage is a right that comes with benefits the state is entitled to control. Texas is the sixth state to pass a law limiting the adoption rights for same sex marriages. Texas birth certificates only allow a mother and a father’s name to be listed. If the non biological same sex parent wants to be recognized as a legal parent, they would have to go through the adoption process but just because they are couple it does not mean that the adoption will be approved.
The Freedom to Serve Children Act was signed on June 15, 2017 by governor Greg Abbott. The Freedom to Serve Children Act states that state funded, and religious based foster agencies can turn down an adoption application for these couples because of the agencies beliefs without being punished. It also prevents the state from denying the agencies an application or contract, denying them a license, or terminating a child welfare provider because their beliefs. If these agencies practice these moves, they could lead themselves to shut down the agencies. Many people do not believe that this act does not discriminate because these religious based agencies are obligated to refer same sex marriages to other agencies that could help them.
Many same sex couples think that they will have a tough time adopting after being turned down, but there are other agencies that are willing to help them and place a child in a loving home. According to the Lifelong Adoptions website, more birthparents are choosing to place their children with same sex couples making the process easier for them. Like any other couple looking to adopt, they do have to go thru the process such as having an adoption home study done, attend a pre-adoption classes, and they do not believe that just because a child grows up in a same sex marriage home that they will turn out to be gay themselves.
Adoption agencies and social workers acknowledge that same sex adoption is rising overall throughout the United States, but some still show concern as to how will the child react as they are growing up. Some of the concerns included are how will the couple explain to their child that they have 2 mothers or 2 fathers, will the child feel embarrassed, or will they go through bullying and being teased by their peers.
I believe in the love is love idea, and that every child should be given the opportunity to have a home and a family even if is with two parents of the same gender who prove themselves capable to raise a family. I would prefer to see a child being raised and loved by them rather than their blood relatives keeping them and making them feel unwanted or keeping them and maybe not having the means to support them. And I would not want a child going thru several foster homes or being in an adoption agency throughout their childhood creating an unstable environment for them which could lead them to not knowing who they really want to be in life.
Adoption processes should be redesigned to help the process for same sex couples be easier and so that may not face anymore discrimination. If they prove to be capable and apt to care for a child, then they should be allowed to. Nearly everyday we see cases of biological heterosexual parents abusing of their children in diverse ways. I personally have not seen any reporting of a same sex parent doing atrocities to children. We are not hurting the same sex couples with giving them a hard time, the ones being hurt are the children who have to suffer going from home to home while in foster care.
Hispanics overall still do not accept gay marriage mostly because of religious views. About 50% more less, are Catholics, and they believe that a family should be created and raised by a man and a woman. However, the Catholic Church has started to accept the LGBTQ community. With time, Hispanics are expected to be except marriages, because the older generations will die out. The young will view it as normal because they are growing up with this modern day society.
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