Guatemalan-born Encarnacion Bail Romero, who came to the U.S. illegally in 2006 while pregnant was working at a poultry processing plant in Missouri in 2007 when Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers conducted a raid looking for illegals. Along with about 100 other undocumented
workers, Bail Romero was arrested. Her son, Carlos, was 7 months old at the time and a U.S. citizen, as he was born here.
Bail Romero went to jail, and a few months later, after family members could not care for the boy, he ended up in the home of Melinda and Seth Moser of Carthage, Mo. He has been with them for more than two years. Bail Romero was asked to allow her son to be adopted but she refused, asking instead that he be placed in foster care until she was free and could care for him herself. In a clear conflict of interest, her lawyer was hired by the Mosers. Though the "availability" of Carlos was always questionable, though Romero never agreed to give up her son, the couple was able to "adopt" him. An ABC story today demonstrating obvious bias added: "and raised him as their own." Well, actually he was their "own"--they had papers to prove the adoption was legal.
Language difficulties, a terrible lawyer and the adopt-a-mania prevalent in the western world were in collusion against this woman. The judge thought the boy was better off with an American couple, not his uneducated, Spanish-speaking, incarcerated Mother. "Illegally smuggling herself into the country is not a lifestyle that can provide any stability for the child," wrote Missouri Circuit Court Judge David Dally when he terminated Romero's parental rights in 2008. "Obviously, I thought the judgment was fair when I issued the judgment, yes," he stated later.
FROM CARLOS TO 'JAMISON'
The Missouri couple, who call the boy Jamison, say he is their son and they're the only parents the child has known since he was a baby. "I could not love him more, had he come out of me physically," Melinda Moser told a Missouri television station. "I can only imagine the trauma that he would go through in feeling like people that did love him have betrayed him, you know?"
You don't think he might one day think his real mother betrayed him? And Jamison? Could there hardly be another name that has less connection with his culture than Jamison?
Judge David Jones will determine Bail Romero's parental rights and potentially oversee an adoption proceeding in a trial that is expected to last through Friday.
MODERN ADOPTION VS BYGONE SLAVERY?
This whole case has stunk from the very beginning, and there are thought to be hundreds just like it--of children separated from their parents and adopted by middle-class good folks here in America. Cases like this are heinous, as they go against everything that is right and decent. People go crazy when I compare modern adoption to a kind of legalized slavery, but look at the similarities inherent here: a woman is jailed, and her son, though the exigencies of poverty and unfamiliarity with American law and custom, becomes the legal property of others.
The Mosers claim that Bail Romero made no attempt to see her son or maintain any kind of contact; but because of an inept lawyer--hired by the Mosers, and the language barrier, she had no real opportunity to maintain any kind of contact with the child. She did not understand what was happening, and when she did she always maintained she did not want her child to be adopted. Yet the Mosers went ahead, fully aware that Bail Romero had not relinquished rights to her son. She is the boy's mother; she has served her time in jail for illegally seeking a better life in America, but what wise Solomon would say she also had to relinquish a child?
Yes, we understand that the Mosers will suffer and miss the boy if he is returned to his natural mother. But these arguments we have heard before, and they are never reason enough to tear a child from his mother.
The Mosers, for continuing this fight, are the ones who ought to be in jail. --lorraine
We have blogged about Bail Romero's case before : An immigrant fights for her son, illegally adopted
For other cases of natural parents fighting to keep their own children, see:
Yet another baby snatching. Not yet.
Transition Time in Contested Adoptions: Just Another Excuse for Delay
Justice for birthmothers is an oxymoron
May the Richest Parents Win--The DeBoer Case
Have Christy and Jason Vaughn No Morals?
Birth Parents Win One in Michigan
The Language of Blood (link above) by Jane Jeong Trenka is a beautiful book about being adopted into a culture not your own.