Continuing on Linda's theme of yesterday...abortion/adoption is everywhere in the media, as regular readers of FFM know. Last night (11/11/08) Law & Order, SVU featured a group of girls at a Catholic prep school deciding to get pregnant and keep their babies! At least one of whom had been in the "abstinence-until-marriage" society...but she gets pregnant from a one-nighter with a sleazy DJ, not her Forever And True Husband (or fath in cyber-lingo) with whom she is not having sex. Anyway, this is a side story to the murder disguised as a suicide...of the first girl who gets pregnant, killed in a jealous rage by her virginal fath.
But the best part of the show for me was that only Eliot, the Catholic cop of the team, suggested briefly that adoption was the right alternative for the girls and their babies. Nobody took him seriously. I felt like cheering, yeah! at least somebody who is writing those scripts is aware that teenagers are not looking upon adoption as the answer, or pushing adoption.
At the show's end, one pregnant teen (whose mother and brother are in jail for acts related to this bizarre story, including murdering the father of her child) is approached by the dead man's father (he would be the baby's grandfather). The good man offers to take her in and and they will take care of the child together. Result: One child, not adopted, growing up with the best solution possible, genetic relatives all around. Okay, I got a little teary when the show ended with them hugging.
So we have a show with pregnant teenagers and only a quick (and dismissed) nod to adoption! Not a Juno in sight. Let's hear it for SVU!
Meanwhile, more Catholic adoption action over at a Catholic blog that Joyce Bahr of New York State Adoption Reform (NYSAR) has alerted us to. Adoptive mother Heidi H. Saxton writes that organizations groups such as Unsealed Initiative and Bastard Nation are anti-adoption. Damn straight we're anti-adoption--unless really really necessary and even then those birth records better be open from the get-go.
Unsealed Initiative comes in for a second slam because it's supposedly anti birth mother since it encourages giving adoptees their original birth certificates--and goodness, some of those women may have moved on with their lives and be in what I will call "forever closets." Do take a look and give Ms. Saxton something to put in her pipe and smoke.
Joyce, as many of you know, is the president of NYSAR and a birth mother, as well as of course moi, and Linda and Jane and the many many first mothers who are an active and vital part of the movement to get those records open. Don't you just love it that it is always adoptive parents who are doing their best to "protect" first mothers from their offspring?
Whenever I hear that the reason to not open birth records is to let these poor women stay in their forever closets I think of all those poor cotton and tobacco farmers in the South who were going to lose their "gracious" way of living once slavery was abolished. In the end, justice has to prevail. This fight seems endless, but WE WILL WIN someday.
Lots of news today. Today's NY Times reports that England is suffering from a "serious" lack of sperm donors since the government decided they can no longer be anonymous:
Each year, Britain needs at least 500 donors to provide sperm for approximately 4,000 women. But in 2006, only 307 donors registered, according to an editorial being published Wednesday in BMJ, formerly the British Medical Journal. The editorial was based on a report published by the British Fertility Society in September.
If you do the math, 500 sperm donors that amounts to eight fertilizations...per donor.
If only our government had the good judgment and compassion to do the same--not let sperm donors be anonymous. Here's what one sperm clinic worker in England had to say: “Donors come in knowing about the loss of anonymity. Loss of anonymity is a good thing in terms of children being able to find out about their genetic background. The donors who come forward don’t have a problem with it. "
If any children of sperm donors are reading, do write to the Times and let them know how you feel. Keep it short and pithy. Send to Letters@nytimes.com.
Now back to my book. --lorraine