The websites springing up to oppose HB 2904 which would assure birth parents have the time and information to make informed decisions on adoption would be amusing except that some folks might actually believe the untruths and distortions they spew out. I’ll be writing about these sites for the next few days.
hb 2904 – adoption reform? The authors claim to be “a small group of 20 [anonymous] Oregon birth mothers” assisted by Oregon Adoption Attorneys and the Oregon Adoption Coalition (the umbrella group for adoption agencies). Their reason for opposing HB 2904? “Future birth mothers need us to help protect their right to choose an adoption.”
What they say: “The bill would make it more difficult for birth parents to choose to to [sic] place their babies for adoption and make it easier for adoptions to be overturned.” Well, yes, having time to think about what they’re doing might cause some mothers to nurture their children.
“Many of the ‘protections’ in this bill are already available to birthmothers according to current adoption laws, per the birthmother’s choice.” This is news to Ashley Petersen-Munoz and Kiley Stewart who lost their daughters in 2010 and Janette Barcenas who lost her son in 2005 because the law did not give them adequate time to decide or sufficient information to make informed choices.
“This bill would actually take away her ability to make these choices by requiring certain behaviors from the birth parent and not allow them to waive proposed mandatory waiting periods.
The bill doesn’t require any behavior unless thinking is a behavior. Actually it doesn’t even require that – it only requires information to be passed along. A mother can keep her mind shut, if she chooses to do so. (Don’t bother me with facts; I’ve already made up my mind.). Here’s what the people behind this website don’t want mothers to know:
(a) The grief and loss that may be experienced by the birth parent and the child as a result of the adoption;
(b) The desirability of keeping the child with the birth parent, or with members of the birth parent’s family if the birth parent is unable to care for the child;
(c) The availability of public and private resources that would enable the birth parent to keep and nurture the child; and
(d) The benefits of continuing contact between the birth parent and the child.
The site goes on: “Birth parents would be forced to parent for 8 days or the baby would need to be placed in foster care for that period of time.
Forced to parent? OMG!! A mother might discover that nurturing her child is really a neat thing.
The truth is that the bill does not state what would happen to the baby during the eight days. The parties – the birth mother, the prospective adoptive parents, and the agency -- would work it out . It’s most likely the baby would go home with the prospective adoptive parents.
“The creation of a 30 day revocation period that cannot be waived by the birth parent could lead to more disrupted adoptions/placements.
Birth parents wrote this? Methinks this came straight from the pens of those who would have to refund the $30,000 plus dollars the prospective adoptive parents paid for the baby if a mother decided to keep her baby.
“The bill will create an ‘adoption attorney fee fund’ paid for by Oregon tax payers.”
No better way to raise the ire of a legislator than to mention "attorneys and taxes" in the same sentence. Nothing voters hate more than attorneys and taxes. Of course the statement isn’t true as anyone with half a brain could tell by reading the first page of the bill. The bill creates a fund from a fee added to the $50 adoption petition filing fee to pay attorneys to advise parents of their rights. It would be great if mothers considering adoption could hire their own lawyers but they can’t afford to – lack of funds is the primary reason why they’re considering adoption in the first place.
Of course adoptive parents fork out plenty for attorneys to make sure the adoption is airtight. The tax payers pay the adoptive parents attorney fees and more through a federal “adoption tax credit” to the tune of $13,170.
“The bill will make it a requirement for all the information in an adoptive couple’s home study to be seen by the birth parent prior to relinquishment.”
If this score of birth mothers is so proud of giving their babies to strangers, you’d think they would have put their names on the website. Truth is, we don’t believe for a minute that any birth parent, let alone 20, wrote this nonsense on their own. It looks like these women, like the birth mothers who sued to overturn Measure 58 which allows adult adoptees to have their original birth certificates, were put up to it by those who make their living from adoption -- that is, if these birth mothers exist at all.
Tomorrow, I’ll write about other sites spewing misinformation about HB 2904.