Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Red Herring of "Abandonment"

A common ploy of anti-marriage equality folks is to say something along the lines of "But same-sex parenting requires some sort of sperm or egg abandonment or relinquishment by a biological parent, thus the child suffers psychological harm at being abandoned by a biological parent."

And that is their basis for wanting to deny same-sex couples the right to get married and/or the right to have children.

Over at Opine Editorials, I have engaged in a dialogue on this very topic:.

I asked Renee the following questions:

"SO what do you suggest, Renee? What is YOUR solution to this problem of "abandonment?"

Do you propose that only married, heterosexual couples be allowed to have children?

And what should happen to them if they divorce post-procreation? Should they then be arrested? Should the children be taken away from them? Should they be forced to stay married?

Do you propose that gays and lesbians not be legally allowed to have children? How do you reconcile that with people's freedom to live their lives in ways that make them happy?

And how do you reconcile the fact that a child *may* feel a sense of abandonment because they came from a sperm donor, but may also at the same time live a completely happy fulfilled life with its two same-gender parents who raised him or her? There are worse ways to grow up than having two loving parents who happen to be of the same gender.

All of this is asked in all seriousness.

Because, like or not (and I know you don't) the world and its people will never obey your strict demands. Gays and lesbians will always exist, and they will keep having children. Heterosexual couples will still get divorced. And single mothers will still raise children by themselves.

Instead of complaining about all the problems gay people cause and how awful it is to be raised by a single or divorced mother, why don't you talk solutions, for once?"

Fitz, thus far, has been the only one to answer:

"Yes people are very selfish.

I think we can do alot[sic] to reduce divorce.

Single mothers usually dont get pregnant attentionally[sic].

But these selfish gay people who intentionally bring children into the world only to deny them their mother or father.

Well - No need to actively encourage & subsidize this selfish behavior.

I think we will start by defending marriages [sic] very definition."

Sweet Baby Jessica, I forgot about the "gay-people-as-selfish" argument.

Perhaps he hasn't ready the studies that the rest of the civilized and professional world has read (showing that gay parents cause no harm to children, and that children of gay parents do not suffer from any more harmful pyschological effects than children of straight parents). Or perhaps he has read them, and he is in blatant denial of them, because he is already too deep in his own bigotry to turn back now.

I'll end with this one quote, because I think a lot of the anti-SSM crowd by now is just stubbornly clinging to the supposed superiority of their own flawed moral system despite all evidence that they are wrong:

Pride attaches undue importance to the superiority of one's status in the eyes of others; And shame is fear of humiliation at one's inferior status in the estimation of others. When one sets his heart on being highly esteemed, and achieves such rating, then he is automatically involved in fear of losing his status.”--Lao Tzu, founder of Taoism.


John said...

Fritz responded, but he did not answer the questions.

Fannie said...
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Fannie said...
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Fannie said...

(Sorry for the above deletions. I was going to say something really mean, but thought better of it.)

"Single mothers usually dont get pregnant attentionally[sic]."

I'm sorry, LOL! I stopped reading Fitz's all-too-typical answer after that.

Also noted is Renee's odd answer to your articulate attempt to engage in dialogue with her. She answered nothing you asked her to. Why does she always revert back to talking about coitus and married bed death?

I commend you for trying over there, but really, it's impossible to take those folks as seriously as they take themselves

Jane Know said...

It's because they don't have answers to those questions I asked them. It gets them thinking, and then they revert back to their trusty ole cut and pasted answers they use over and over. They don't have specific answers. Renee stated something like, "there's a lot we can do..." but didn't ever say what they can do. Bashing gay people on an internet website devoted to telling people about the evils of selfish gay people who want to get married is NOT one of those things. I honestly don't know why they do it.

Fannie said...

Regarding their "trusty ole cut and pasted answers they use over and over."

I find it a sign of their intellectual stagnation that they constantly cite to their own years-old laughably illogical opine articles when engaging in debate with others. It's like, sorry but your logic was faulty then so I'm pretty sure it's still faulty now. But what else can we expect from those who are ignorantly incapable of recognizing faulty logic and competence in others.

That they don't answer your questions is a sign that they're a bunch of dying dinosaurs who are so set in their illogical thinking that they are utterly incapable of looking at the world from a fresh perspective.

It's actually sad that they hold themselves in such high esteem.

Jane Know said...

I wish I knew what they were really SO concerned about. Because I doubt it is "The Children." And I doubt it is "The Institution of Marriage." As I read in an article just today, they should "let grown-ups make grown-up decisions" and stop treating the rest of the world like children.

John said...

"I wish I knew what they were really SO concerned about. "

I think I know.

Their world, that strange mixture of Puritan and Victorian values, is dying. They know it, but they change it.

All of it is their fault. They know that, too.

But to admit it is to admit that they have failed.

Gotta find a scapegoat.

John said...

"but they change it."

I mean they CAN'T change it.

Jane Know said...

"Their world, that strange mixture of Puritan and Victorian values, is dying."

It is a strange mix. And thank God it is dying.

Fitz said...

Jane Know - Fannie & Co.

Greeting your adversaries with oblivious & impertinent posts questioning the very idea that children have a right to be born and raised by their own Mothers & Fathers, and that this opinion is somehow incredulous… seems a strange tactic.

This is not a new or particularly “conservative” or “traditionalist” idea.

UN Declarations on Family & Children.
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Article 10.1 on family and marriage states that: "The widest possible protection and assistance should be accorded to the family, which is the natural and fundamental group unit of society, particularly for its establishment and while it is responsible for the care and education of dependent children."

The expression "the natural and fundamental group unit" refers to the natural combination of a man and a woman required to create a child.

U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 16 declares the right to marry based on the traditional definition of marriage, and states that such a family is "the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State."

Article 16
1.Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.

2.Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.

3.The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
The Convention states in Article 7 that the child has "as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents".

Article 3 states that "In all actions concerning children, whether undertaken by public or private social welfare institutions, courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration."

Article 7
1. The child shall be registered immediately after birth and shall have the right from birth to a name, the right to acquire a nationality and. as far as possible, the right to know and be cared for by his or her parents.

2. States Parties shall ensure the implementation of these rights in accordance with their national law and their obligations under the relevant international instruments in this field, in particular where the child would otherwise be stateless.

Article 8

1. States Parties undertake to respect the right of the child to preserve his or her identity, including nationality, name and family relations as recognized by law without unlawful interference.

2. Where a child is illegally deprived of some or all of the elements of his or her identity, States Parties shall provide appropriate assistance and protection, with a view to re-establishing speedily his or her identity.

Article 9

1. States Parties shall ensure that a child shall not be separated from his or her parents against their will, except when competent authorities subject to judicial review determine, in accordance with applicable law and procedures, that such separation is necessary for the best interests of the child. Such determination may be necessary in a particular case such as one involving abuse or neglect of the child by the parents, or one where the parents are living separately and a decision must be made as to the child's place of residence.

2. In any proceedings pursuant to paragraph 1 of the present article, all interested parties shall be given an opportunity to participate in the proceedings and make their views known.

3. States Parties shall respect the right of the child who is separated from one or both parents to maintain personal relations and direct contact with both parents on a regular basis, except if it is contrary to the child's best interests.

4. Where such separation results from any action initiated by a State Party, such as the detention, imprisonment, exile, deportation or death (including death arising from any cause while the person is in the custody of the State) of one or both parents or of the child, that State Party shall, upon request, provide the parents, the child or, if appropriate, another member of the family with the essential information concerning the whereabouts of the absent member(s) of the family unless the provision of the information would be detrimental to the well-being of the child. States Parties shall further ensure that the submission of such a request shall of itself entail no adverse consequences for the person(s) concerned.

Fannie said...


Ah yes, David Blankenhorn's scary invocation of the UN Declaration.

Can you expound on this UN Declaration, rather than merely cutting and pasting it as you have done innumerable times as though this all speaks for itself and completely settles the matter?

I mean, it's fine and dandy that your interpretation of this UN document pertains to same-sex couples, but let's stop and remember these tidbits:

1. The US has not ratified this declaration. It is not law in the US.

2. Do you have evidence that the drafters of the declaration intended that it be applied to same-sex parents? Or is it meant for invidious things like selling children into sex trade and kidnapping?

Are you seriously comparing same-sex parenting to these evils?

3. Isn't it true that by invoking this declaration you're basically saying: The law is X, therefore the law should be X?

That's not a valid argument.

Don't tell me what the law is, tell me why the law is what it is and why it should be that way.

4. Isn't it true that, as you admit, the evidence thus far indicates that the children of gay parents turn out no better or no worse than the children of opposite-sex parents?

I find such evidence to be far more relevant to the issue at hand than any description of what the law is.

Do you think otherwise? Do you believe that a UN Declaration that you interpret as prohibiting same-sex parenting to be more relevant to the issue of same-sex parenting than is evidence that children of same-sex parents turn out the same as the children of opposite-sex parents?

Jane Know said...

Thanks, Fannie. :-)

Fitz, yes, I am aware of the UN declaration as well. But surely there is some evidence to support all this. Can you find it? Do you have any opinion BESIDES just cutting and pasting what someone else tells you should be your opinion? Do you have any evidence to support your side?

Jane Know said...

Furthermore Fitz, how do you explain the hundreds of thousands of happy children who feel loved by their same-gender parents? DO you think that happy children and their parents who raise them are evil? If so, you have a really warped sense of good and evil. Listen, I know you *think* you are doing humanity some good here on some weird level, but why don't you let grown-ups make their own grown-up decisions? They certainly don't need you butting in, telling them they are wrong or selfish or immoral.

As all the research shows, it is not that gays and lesbiand are inherently evil, it is ONLY intolerant folks like you who tell them they are wrong that make the lives of gays, lesbians, and their children a little bit worse.

Jane Know said...

Until you answer my specific questions, I won't entertain your baseless accusations here.

Fannie said...

"Until you answer my specific questions, I won't entertain your baseless accusations here."

Seriously, why do these people always revert back to the "gay people are just selfish" non-argument?

Oh, right, because in the court of logic and evidence, they lose.

Jane Know said...

Wow, and Renee's nonsensical coitus-worship is at work again over on their blog. I can't even respond to it, it's so irrelevant to the topic.

hammerpants said...

Why does anyone think that an appeal to tradition, current law or declarations are valid arguments in and of themselves?

He-llo? We know history. We know the laws. We know the declarations. Why else would we be talking about this? As Fannie points out, the question is why? And should discriminatory laws change once society recognizes their harm?

And by the way, why is it that anti marriage equality advocates allude to gays' and lesbians' hate of the traditional family? Unlike our opponents, we don't see rights and privileges as a zero sum game. We don't have anything against the married mommy and daddy with 2 kids. I loved my traditional family when I was growing up. I love seeing happy single mother families (because yes, they do exist!) I love seeing happy same-sex parent families.

See my rights don't necessarily take away from yours and your don't have to take away from mine. See how that works?

Jane Know said...

Hammerpants, I agree completely. Fitz especially likes to oversimplify our arguments, and turn us into "enemies of the 'natural' family" at the same time. We are not saying hetersexual families shouldn't exist or that one type is better than another. We are saying that in this world, with it's billions of inhabitants, there are *other* family forms that need the same legal protections, as well. It's not a question of superiority, or of getting rid of family forms. It is simple equality and human rights.

I suppose it is easier when you demonize your opponents the way he does, though.

John said...

"Unlike our opponents, we don't see rights and privileges as a zero sum game."

We need to bring that point up more often.

Fannie said...

I love how Chairm declared on Opine,

"You are wrong, Jane Know."

And rather than telling us all why you were wrong he just asked you a series of meandering questions.

Great. Jane Know is "wrong." So that's all settled then. Chairm Ohn says so.

Deep thoughts.

Fannie said...

What?! Crickets chirping from Fitz when he's confronted with questions surrounding his flawed "analysis"?

So very shocking.

Why do we seriously entertain the ideas of Fitz?