STOKING FIRE: Examining Adoption’s Pitfalls


Ryan Scott Bomberger thanks his lucky stars that Henry and Andrea Bomberger, a Christian couple from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, adopted him in 1971, when he was six weeks old. Then, after taking Ryan, who is biracial, into their home, the Caucasian couple adopted nine more kids—of all races and hues—and reared them alongside their three biological children. According to Ryan, he and his siblings had a near-idyllic upbringing. “Our parents exemplified compassion, wisdom, and unconditional love,” he wrote in an email. “They weren’t out to save the world, just love kids that needed to be loved.”

Sounds lovely.

By all accounts, Ryan did well in school and, accepting his parents’ faith, he spent his undergraduate years at Messiah College. He later attended Pat Robertson’s Regent University where he earned a Master’s in Communications.

Now, more than a decade after completing his studies, Bomberger is a man on an anti-abortion mission and he makes no bones about wanting to broadcast his message. As the creator of the “black genocide” billboards that went up in Atlanta earlier this year, his impassioned advocacy of adoption is deeply intertwined with anti-choice rhetoric.

Bomberger owes his existence to rape and says that he can imagine his birth mother’s suffering.  “Rape is evil,” he said via email. “The child born of rape is the only beauty that comes from such a life-crushing experience.” He acknowledges that many anti-abortion activists—though not him–make an exception for women who have been impregnated by rape or incest. “I don’t believe that following an injustice to one precious human being with injustice to another [the unborn child] is justice at all,” he wrote.

Bomberger spreads his bombast on a host of websites: thisisryan.com; toomanyaborted.com; theradiancefoundation.org; and creativeminorityreport.com, among them. He’s also developed the oddly-named shouldhavebeenaborted.com, which perpetuates a slew of myths about prochoice beliefs. “I am one of the unwanted children,” he pontificates. “I am the one that the abortion movement preaches will never live a happy life.”

Say what? While Bomberger and I don’t hang in the same circles, as far as I know no prochoicer has ever tried to predict a fetus’ future. Instead, we focus on women, zeroing in on how unwanted pregnancies impact their lives. What’s more, adoption has always been part of the mix. In fact, that’s why many women’s health facilities provide comprehensive services, from abortion to adoption, for those in need.  At the same time, we’re realistic, acknowledging the pain of the approximately 40,000 women a year whose babies are surrendered to adoptive homes throughout the 50 states.

Ask anyone who has relinquished a child, and they’ll tell you: It doesn’t matter if the placement occurred before Roe or more recently—there’s always anguish. According to the Adoption Education Center, “All birth parents must deal with grief.”  And it’s not something that can be swept under the rug. “Unresolved grief can cause problems in a number of areas,” AEC’s website reports. “It can affect romantic relationships, parent-child relationships, the ability to work effectively, and a person’s feelings of happiness and usefulness… Some need professional help to deal with the emotions that accompany the loss… Just about all birth parents wonder how their son or daughter is doing, especially when the child has reached the age for important events.”

These findings don’t surprise reproductive rights activist Susan E. Davis. Davis says that she became a women’s health advocate in 1961, after a close friend became pregnant out of wedlock. “When I came home from college I called Sheila. Her mom told me that she’d gotten pregnant and was living with her aunt 35 miles away,” she begins. “I can’t describe the feelings I had because unwed pregnancy was so shrouded in secrecy and shame.”

Still, I immediately called Sheila and said, ‘I’m coming to see you.’ My mother let me borrow her car and for the next few months, until Sheila delivered in July, I went to see her two or three times a week. Sheila had originally thought she’d marry the baby’s father, but the guy’s mother didn’t like her so they didn’t tie the knot. It was heartbreaking when she had the baby. She held her once, then gave her up for adoption. She later got married—twice—but it took until maybe 10 years ago for her to tell her two children about their older sister. Sheila has put out feelers for the child she gave up, but her daughter has never responded. Sheila is a very upbeat, loving woman but I know this remains a deep wound for her.

The devastating after-effects of adoption were further hammered home for Davis when another friend recounted something that happened to her two decades after she placed her newborn with an adoptive family.  “Joan told me that one day she developed a horrific migraine. She said her entire body ached and she felt absolutely awful. Later, she realized that the headache coincided with the 21st birthday of the child she’d given up. She was grieving. Her body remembered what had happened.”

“Sure, adoption should be an option,” Davis concludes. “But there is a tremendous element of loss when a woman gives up a child–and it lingers.”

Ryan Bomberger glosses over these realities, and instead focuses exclusively on his grateful-to-be-alive message. But since he and his birth mother have never met, her life trajectory remains a complete unknown. I only hope she’s as happy and fulfilled as he is.

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  • kerewin21

    I agree that adoption is not the simple, rosy solution anti abortion activists make it seem.  However, we in the pro-choice community need to work on our language surrounding adoption.  Rather than saying someone is “giving up” a child for adoption, we can use more empowering language that legitimizes this as the right choice for some women.  Women who opt for adoption are *choosing* an adoption plan, just as women who opt to continue a pregnancy and maintain custody of their child are choosing to parent and women who opt to end their pregnancy are choosing to terminate.  While adoption is not a choice that most women will make, we need to include it within our framework of choice by changing the language associated with it.

  • jodi-jacobson

    Thanks for your comment.

  • crowepps

    Bomberger owes his existence to rape

    Did the adoption agency give this extremely private and prejudicial information to his adoptive parents?  Did they pass the information on to him?  Is the idea behind doing so to reassure that his mother was a ‘good girl’ who didn’t voluntarily have sex?  I find his knowledge of this ‘fact’ disturbing and an invasion of his mother’s privacy, and his belief that he “can imagine his mother’s suffering” totally without foundation.  Once again, an anti-abortion activist personalizes the debate – owing his life to his mother’s choice to complete her pregnancy, he gets queazy about the fact that she had the option to abort instead and wants to force all raped women to stay pregnant.  It is not all about HIM.

  • harry834

    seems to be the language that many women choose to describe their feelings. I suppose WE advocates can choose for different words in presentation of all choices…and perhaps the choic of language from those presenting the choices may affect how they feel about the choices…possibly

  • eleanor-bader

    Ryan said that his adoptive parents told him about the rape when he was an adolescent. How they knew remains unknown but I assumed that the agency told them the circumstances of the child’s conception…You’re right–it is troubling. 

  • julie-watkins

    First, is a first-person description on Daily Kos from someone who planned to be a single mother (decades ago), and was making plans, but her child was stolen from her: she said she was forced to the hospital a few days before she was planning to leave her parents house, taken to the hospital where she was shackled until & through her labor, never got to hold her child.

    Second is thinking about the siblings. There was an article (maybe multiple articles) about arranged adoptions where the go-between finds women who can’t afford another child & pays all the medical expenses and some extras … and what do the young kids think? Mom’s giving away their brother or sister, is she going to send them away, too? I think there would be a lot of grief and fear for those kids.

    The only positive adoption stories I’ve read have been open adoptions where there wasn’t pressure, usually to relatives or neighbors in the same town or near, and some contact (if minimal) is retained, so the birth mother knows her child is in a safe situation. That’s the idea situation, but with so much bad behavior happening it’s hard to get there.

    I’ve also read not-really-adoption situations where “it takes a villiage to raise a child” close-knit families will take over parenting when the biological parent(s) aren’t competant.

  • crowepps

    It has been my experience that SOME adoption agencies and SOME adoptive parents have a tendency to justify the adoption by ‘explaining’ the adoptive mother – she was too young, she was a druggie, she was raped – all information that in my personal opinion is none of anybody else’s business, barring medical complications.  Particularly in cases where the adoptive parents pass on that explanation to their relatives and friends, or to the adopted child himself, I think this does a great deal of damage.

     

    Sitting and listening to an adoptive grandmother talk to her friend in my presence and trash the intelligence, character and morals of the biological mom, apparently to justify why the child was better off with HER daughter, I was just boggled by how damaging this gossip would be to the child.  As these justification sessions are held repeatedly, the child is eventually going to hear grandma’s opinion.  I cannot inmagine any useful purpose being served by a child hearing “your mother was a slut” or “your mother neglected you” or “your father was a rapist”. 

     

    It’s interesting to speculate why Ryan’s reaction to this tale is to forbid other women who were raped to have abortions rather than to focus on getting through to men that it’s their responsibility to lower the obscenely high rape rate in this country.

  • embell

    As a teenage college freshman, I got pregnant in the early 1960s.  Not having any alternative, I had a shotgun marriage, followed by a quick separation and divorce.  I put my child up for adoption through an agency, because I was unable to earn a living and unwilling to put an additional burden on my parents.  Later I married and had three children, all now adults.  Ten years later, that marriage was faltering, and I got pregnant through a failure of birth control.  I went to NY state and had an abortion. Then I finished college and graduate school, and was able to earn a decent living for my family. Now, as I look back, I wish abortion had been available earlier.  My children know nothing of my first pregnancy or later abortion, nor is it their business.  But there is always a  concern that the first child will somehow find me and cause concern in my chosen family.  Just before she died, my mother told me that her doctor had told her he would have given me an abortion of that first pregnancy, but she never told me.  I wish she had.  I hope that the younger generation will defend a woman’s right to choose.  Forced pregnancy continuation can lead to bad results for the fetus, the mother, and society at large.

  • progo35

    Yet another anti-adoption piece. Don’t you guys geet tired of hammering the same anti-choice (because it is-your myopic focus on the negative aspects of adoption indicates that you (RH reality check) do not, by and large, consider adoption to be a legitimate or empowering option, regardless of what individual commentators may think), mantra over and over and over again??

  • crowepps

    The choice of adoption is pretty consistently rejected as legitimate or empowering by its most important auditors – the vast majority of single women who fail to choose it and instead abort or keep their child themselves. Perhaps harnessing constructive criticism and using it to reduce the known negatives of adoption would make it more attractive to those women when it is more legitimate and empowering so that they will choose it.

  • grayduck

    Adoption may involve grief for some women, but that hardly is an argument for abortion. A woman who grieves over the adoption-away of her child is certainly going to grieve for the brutal execution of her child.

     

  • ahunt

    “the repugnant racist and eugenic history of Birth Control,”

     

    Do not wish to jump to conclusions. Ryan, you do support a woman’s right to contracept…right?

  • crowepps

     There is nothing intrusive about adoptive parents being told by an agency of the circumstances surrounding a birth mother’s relinquishing of her child. 

    I’m afraid I disagree with you here.  It serves no useful purpose whatsoever for the adoptive parents to know that their infant was conceived during a rape, conveying that message has more to do with ‘exongerating’ the birth mother from an assumption of promiscuity.  I find it highly unlikely that any agency would, just as an example, tell adoptive parents ‘the birth mother desperately wanted to keep her child but she’s only 16 and her father said he would kill her so here’s your baby’.

     

    I also think it is extremely unhealthy for adoptive parents told these particular “circumstances surrounding a birth mother’s relinquishing of her child” to disseminate the information further, particularly to the child involved.

    If those who claim to be “prochoice” truly advocated for adoption, we’d see that reflected in tangible action by this demographic–but we simply don’t.  Planned Parenthood alone aborted over 305,000 children in 2007 versus the referral of 4,912 clients to adoption.  That’s ONE adoption referral for every 62 abortions.  And adoption referrals make no money, whereas 305,000 abortions generated over $180 million for the nation’s largest (nonprofit) abortion provider.

    I’m glad you made it clear that Planned Parenthood does indeed refer for adoption, and that all of the money involved in those adoption goes to the $1.4 billion ‘adoption industry’.  It is not Planned Parenthood’s role to advocate adoption to women who come to them, but instead to let those women know all the options, as you admit they do, and let them make up their own minds.

  • progo35

    Thank you, Ryan, for your thoughtful reply. As an adoptee, I appreciate your position as well. I hope that some day pro life and pro choice people will work together to create a world where women will not feel compelled to end pregnancies because of exigent circumstances. I think you were very generous and open minded to allow this editorial to be written about you. Best wishes with your work.

  • princess-rot

    I thought that was odd, too, but I just assumed that’s how adoption agencies rolled back when, or that he could be making it up. It was the second thing that jumped out at me immediately after the first: “he understands his birth mother’s suffering”. No, dude, you don’t, else you wouldn’t suffer from the anti-choice fantasy that all women are the same at some level, and all we want is babies and remaining pregnant and giving birth is universally a good thing. He sees everything from what the outcome of pregnancy will bring for itself, missing the middle step of what it could bring for the woman, and completely fails to take into account or understand women’s actual experiences. Also, the irritating, paternalistic assumption that it’s for all women’s own good if we have children.

  • modernmouse

    In order to receive funding under Title X, clinics must offer comprehensive counseling including adoption services.

  • modernmouse

    “WHEREAS, Our Father loves all of these children, and a great multitude of them will never otherwise hear the gospel of Jesus Christ; now, therefore, be it” is a quote from the resolutions taken from the Southern Baptist Convention of 2009 in which adoption by Christians is encouraged for the growth of their flock and dogma.  

  • modernmouse

    Please don’t!  It is the meddling of social workers and adoptive parents that coined the ubiquitous ‘birthmother’ moniker which is highly insulting and intentionally marginalizes natural mothers.  We women who lost children to adoption whether through coercion, lack of choices or free will are perfectly competent and able to determine how we choose to be referred to, thank you very much. 

    Surrendering a child for adoption is rarely something a woman wants and is usually due to a lack of resources and should never be compared to choosing termination or birth.  Empowering language objectifies those women so please don’t!  Adoption agencies are notorious for ‘empowering’ women who are in a vulnerable position to try to salve their decision to surrender.  They make women feel altruistic for a short while until that woman recognizes all that she lost.  I speak from personal experience.

    Finally, open adoption like adoption itself is highly unregulated and unenforceable.  It is very common for adoptive parents to control how much if any face time mothers get with their surrendered child and they retract all contact often.   

    For insight into natural mothers I suggest you read Ann Fesslers’ The Girls Who Went Away.

  • adoptauthor

    It is sad that both pro-choice and pro-life supporters seem present the argument as a simple duality: abortion or adoption, totally eliminating women’s right to choose to maintain their constitutional right to keep and nurture their child.

    While you are busy fighting one another, expectant mothers are being coerced and pressured for their babies, which are in high demand, often by pregnancy crisis centers that are fronts for adoption agency businesses.

    The difficulties faced by mothers faced with unexpected pregnancies are temporary and resolvable. Losing a child no matter via any method has lifelong repercussions on both mother and child. American adoptees in 4 out of 5 states are denied the same right as non-adopted persons to access their own birth certificates and are issued a falsified certificate naming their adopters as their parents of birth.  Open adoption agreements are enforceable and often broken.

    The option to terminate a pregnancy is time-limited an many women do not even know or acknowledge that they are pregnant until it is too late. Thus the real choice is between placing one’s child – relinquishing, losing – the child to adoption or being offered the emotional and financial support needed to chose freely to preserve one’s family.

    Instead of fighting over which is worse – the devil-or-the-deep-blue-sea, how much better if both sides of the debate worked toward family preservation!

    Bomberger means well, but does himself and all adoptees a disservice by perpetuating the myth that those who are adopted – even those others were raped – were any more at risk of being aborted than non-adopted children.

    Mirah Riben, The Stork Market: America’s Multi-Billion Dollar Unregulated Adoption Industry

  • katekoop

    “as far as I know no prochoicer has ever tried to predict a fetus’ future. Instead, we focus on women, zeroing in on how unwanted pregnancies impact their lives.”

     

    Really??? This is the MOST RIDICULOUSLY ironic statement – Every pro-“choicer” that has an abortion has CERTAINLY PREDICTED that fetus’ future!

    Or what about the story about Ms. Bader’s friend Sheila who gave up her unplanned child for adoption…

    She said her entire body ached and she felt absolutely awful. Later, she realized that the headache coincided with the 21st birthday of the child she’d given up. She was grieving. Her body remembered what had happened.”

    I wonder how much more Sheila’s body would have grieved if she chose abortion over adoption… knowing on the 21st birthday that she had ended her child’s life, versus actually giving her child up for adoption so the child had a chance to live a life full of possibilty in a caring home?! 

     

    If I had followed my doctor/genetic counselor’s advice, I would have terminated my 2nd pregnancy based on a possibility of her having Down Syndrome. She is 7 now, and healthy as can be!

     

    If I had made a “choice” about the convenience of having twins but no finances, I could have “terminated” the lives of my adorable 2 year twin girls. But, I was concerned for THEIR RIGHTS as 2 little girls who will one day become powerful women.

     

    My choices predicted that my fetuses would have a future! …Which is always better than the alternative.

     

  • prochoiceferret

    It is sad that both pro-choice and pro-life supporters seem present the argument as a simple duality: abortion or adoption, totally eliminating women’s right to choose to maintain their constitutional right to keep and nurture their child.

    Sorry. Maybe if there weren’t an entire movement working to take away womens’ right to have an abortion, we would have had more time and energy to highlight our support of women who freely choose to keep an unexpected-but-wanted pregnancy.

    While you are busy fighting one another, expectant mothers are being coerced and pressured for their babies, which are in high demand, often by pregnancy crisis centers that are fronts for adoption agency businesses.

    Sorry for being “busy fighting” against the very thing you are denouncing here. But we prefer that to being accused of “sitting on our asses doing nothing.”

    The difficulties faced by mothers faced with unexpected pregnancies are temporary and resolvable.

    Seems to me that you don’t know very many mothers/women faced with unexpected pregnancies.

    Losing a child no matter via any method has lifelong repercussions on both mother and child.

    As opposed to keeping a child, which obviously does not.

    The option to terminate a pregnancy is time-limited an many women do not even know or acknowledge that they are pregnant until it is too late.

    Teaching comprehensive sex ed, and lowering the stigma surrounding abortion will help with that. As for women remaining completely unaware of being pregnant until the third trimester, all we have to do is prevent them from becoming comatose in the first place.

    Thus the real choice is between placing one’s child – relinquishing, losing – the child to adoption or being offered the emotional and financial support needed to chose freely to preserve one’s family.

    Or having an abortion. Don’t forget that one.

    Instead of fighting over which is worse – the devil-or-the-deep-blue-sea, how much better if both sides of the debate worked toward family preservation!

    Some women don’t want to start a family, and some women have an abortion for the benefit of a family they already have. More is not always better, after all.

     

    Now I think I see why you were chastising the pro-choice side. Unlike us, you seem to support limiting womens’ choices.

  • prochoiceferret

    Really??? This is the MOST RIDICULOUSLY ironic statement – Every pro-“choicer” that has an abortion has CERTAINLY PREDICTED that fetus’ future!

    There is a difference between a person who is a pro-choice advocate, and a person who has an abortion. Sometimes, a person is both. But the point was that it’s the pregnant woman’s place to decide whether she will go through with a pregnancy, given her own assessment of her circumstances (which could be likened to “predicting that fetus’s future”), and the pro-choice advocate’s place to support that woman’s decision.

     

    In other words, the advocate does not do the assessment/prediction for the pregnant woman, any more than s/he makes the choice for her.

    I wonder how much more Sheila’s body would have grieved if she chose abortion over adoption…

    Probably a lot less. You’re aware of the flood of “motherly bonding” hormones that hit right around childbirth?

    My choices predicted that my fetuses would have a future!

    Good for you. We support your choice.

    …Which is always better than the alternative.

    Always?

  • modernmouse

    Did I read the same post that you read?!  Mirah Ruben was not chastising the pro choice side.  Mostly she was referring to women who were coerced or forced into carrying their pregnancy to term and to surrender. 

    Seriously, as a natural mother myself and a former employee of Planned Parenthood I am on your side and I’m pretty sure Mirah Ruben is too.  I taught comprehensive sex ed so other young women would have the knowledge I so lacked. 

    The only thing I would correct in Ms. Ruben’s post is the notion that keeping your child is not discussed at family planning clinics.  At the risk of repeating myself, it is taught in order to receive Title X funds. 

    Ferret, please calm down and reread that post.  We’re working with you, not against you! 

  • crowepps

    I read her post as chastising both sides for not doing more to make it possible for women to keep their children, which was kind of offputting to me, since her focus in working on that issue doesn’t obligate other people concerned with other aspects of reproduction justice to set their own ‘issues’ aside and join in focusing on her issue.

     

    Putting aside the tone, however, it was a good reminder that some women make their abort/adopt/parent decision not on what they would ‘like’ to do but rather what they feel compelled to do due to lack of economic and social support and a lot more could be done to ensure those particular pressures aren’t pivotal in the decision.

     

    I absolutely agree with her that propagandizing a pregnant girl or woman with ‘you will be poor so you won’t be a good mother’ or ‘single mothers can’t provide a good home like married couples’ in order to coerce them to agree to adoption is really manipulative and unfair. I’m not aware of efforts to try to wrest children away from widows because ‘the children won’t have a real family’.

  • prochoiceferret

    Did I read the same post that you read?!

    I’m not sure. Was this the one where she said the “real choice” was between adoption and keeping the child?

    Mostly she was referring to women who were coerced or forced into carrying their pregnancy to term and to surrender.

    Which is an important topic, to be sure, but she could have addressed this without denigrating the other options available to women, or the advocates who work to make these available.

    Seriously, as a natural mother myself and a former employee of Planned Parenthood I am on your side and I’m pretty sure Mirah Ruben is too.

    I’m glad to have you onboard! But if you feel that way about Ms. Ruben, you must know something about her beyond what she wrote here.

    The only thing I would correct in Ms. Ruben’s post is the notion that keeping your child is not discussed at family planning clinics.

    If she were on our side, I think she would have acknowledged this. As I see it, she’s either coming from an anti-choice perspective, or she’s so wrapped up in keeping-vs.-adoption advocacy that she harbors basic misconceptions about the pro-choice movement. I don’t think option #2 is very likely.

  • jacqjones

    I’m disappointed and saddened by this article.

    I worked in abortion clinics and have counseled over a thousand women seeking abortion services.  Most were clear in their decision and continued with the abortion.  Some chose to continue their pregnancies and either parented or made adoption plans.  I addressed adoption as a viable option with each and every client.

    The above article denigrates women in much the same way as the anti-choice movement does. 

    When it comes to pregancy and life changing decisions there are as many reactions as there are people.  For some women, adoption (or abortion, or parenting) can cause crippling grief.  For others it brings joy, relief, peace, or any other of the myriad human emotions.  To state that “there’s always anguish” is rude and dismissive of the multitude of human experiences. For some women following thru with an adoption plan does cause anguish.  And many women would tell you that it was still the right decision.  Sadness and grief does not mean that something is wrong.

    For some women, adoption is definitely the right decision.  And frankly, we could do a lot to make it a more accessible option.

    First, we need to not shame women who are parents who choose to place a new child in an adoption plan.  Kids can understand this.  I’ve spoken with women who have done this.  It’s hard.  They get a lot of crap from friends and family, but sometimes it’s the right option.

    Second, many women are unable to choose adoption because of the person with whom they got pregnant.  If she’s not ready to or able to parent and continues the pregnancy, the biological father must consent to the adoption. If she lies about who the father is or denies knowledge of the father, it puts the adoption in jeopardy. If he refuses to consent to the adoption, she’s back where she didn’t want to be.  Minnesota changed some of their law to accomodate this problem, but few states have.  If you don’t want to parent with this person, if you don’t trust this person to follow thru on the adoption plan, and if you are certain you don’t want to be a parent, adoption becomes a much more difficult option.

    We still shame women who choose adoption.  They get told that if they choose adoption they will always be sorry.  They’ll grieve forever. That they’re bad mothers.

    If we believe in choice, we need to do everything in our power to ensure that women have true access to every choice available to them – abortion, adoption or parenting. 

    I’ve gone to the mat protecting a woman’s right to continue her pregnancy. I’ve held hands in abortion rooms. I’ve walked thru picket lines to get to work. And I’ve helped connect women with good, trust worthy adoption agencies.  

    When it comes to adoption our culture has a long way to go.  And the pro-choice community should be on the front lines.

  • modernmouse

    Are you saying some women choose adoption without anguish?  That they feel relief after choosing that option?  I don’t think any of the women in my online support groups would agree with that.  I think that initially a woman may feel altruistic about her decision but some years down the road the enormity of what she did will forever haunt her.  I also believe that women are still shamed by their family, their religion into A) not getting an abortion and B) giving their child to adoptors (who are deemed more responsible, better equipped financially, “married” and a myriad of other coercive tactics.) 

    I applaud what you do and your effort to present unbiased and complete information to your clients.  But I don’t think you are seeing the long range effect of surrender on the mother and/or child.  I urge you to read one of the many books on the subject and more importantly talk with those who have walked the road. 

  • crowepps

     I don’t think any of the women in my online support groups would agree with that.

    I’m sure you’re right, however a woman who was NOT feeling anguish and DID experience relief wouldn’t be likely to be interested in participating in an on-line support group.  A woman who made that decision and was at peace with it would not be ‘haunted’ by it.

     

    It’s wise to be wary of the assumption that our own personal experience defines ‘the normal reaction’ and that everyone else will inevitably feel the same way.

  • progo35

    “Empowering language objectifies those women so please don’t!”

    So, let me get this straight-we should denigrate people who freely choose adoption by using disempowering language because some adoptions don’t go very well?

     

    Adoption CAN be empowering if it is done correctly in the context of a woman choosing adoption of her own free will, free of coercion. Many women do not want to have abortions and choose adoption as an alternative to parenting. In this day and age, bad experiences are the exception, not the rule. Adoption today is not what it was in the 1950s and 60s. It is much different. When my adoption was handled in 1982, my biological mother was not forced into it. My biological father’s family even offered to keep me and raise me themselves. She didn’t get “dumped” with the pregnancy, she did not drop out of school, nor did she go away to “visit a sick aunt.” She made the choice of her own volition. I hope that she is happy with that decision, and I resent you denigrating that decision as something that is necessarily objectionable.

  • progo35

    “Empowering language objectifies those women so please don’t!”

    So, let me get this straight-we should denigrate people who freely choose adoption by using disempowering language because some adoptions don’t go very well?

     

    Adoption CAN be empowering if it is done correctly in the context of a woman choosing adoption of her own free will, free of coercion. Many women do not want to have abortions and choose adoption as an alternative to parenting. In this day and age, bad experiences are the exception, not the rule. Adoption today is not what it was in the 1950s and 60s. It is much different. When my adoption was handled in 1982, my biological mother was not forced into it. My biological father’s family even offered to keep me and raise me themselves. She didn’t get “dumped” with the pregnancy, she did not drop out of school, nor did she go away to “visit a sick aunt.” She made the choice of her own volition. I hope that she is happy with that decision, and I resent you denigrating that decision as something that is necessarily objectionable.

  • progo35

    Mirah,

    although the title of your book indicates (to me) that it’s content is highly objectionable, I strongly agree with you on this point. The other day I was looking of what resources are available to pregnant students on my schools’ campus and there were resources for abortion and adoption but not parenting. This is something that the Feminists for Life are working on.

  • ahunt

    Adoption and Grand-Parental issues been raised yet? Just wondering?

  • progo35

    jacjones-

    Thank you SO MUCH for your excellent post. I really feel you represent the majority of pro choice individuals in this country who support all options, including adoption, and do not have an agenda that involves denigrating one option or the other. RH has published several very negative articles on adoption and only one positive on in it’s Common Ground section. Because of this, I get the feeling that some people really don’t want women to choose adoption and make a point of portraying it in a bad light. I think that pro choicers like you and open minded pro lifers (like I try to be) can really make progress in helping women facing unplanned pregnancies.

  • progo35

    I know that my biolgical granparents (a grandmother, grandfather, and one step-grandmother) on my biological father’s side actually offered to raise me and were THRILLED when we got in touch two years ago. Tragically, both of my biological maternal grandparents died in their thirties-my biological grandfather died in a motercycle accident and my biological grandmother died of cyrosis of the liver. Of course, I am relying on my biological father’s account of the situation, as I am not in touch with my biological mother.

    As to how grandparents feel, I imagine there are a whole host of feelings ranging from relief/happiness to grief/regret, just like the myriad feelings of the women placing children for adoption.

     

     

     

     

     

  • progo35

    I agree with you, Crowepps about an adoption agency disclosing the circumstances of a conception-the parents don’t have a “right to know” about that.

     

    However, the adoption process usually involves matching birth parent profiles with potential adoptive parent profils and vice versa. This usually involves giving the adoptive parents some idea of what the birth parents are like, which is probably the major reason why the circumstances of the conception are disclosed. In my adoption paperwork there is a summary describing my biological parents and their background. It says that my biological mother was in the eleventh grade and my biological father had just finished high school, etc.

     

    So, I don’t think people are being told about the circumstances of a baby’s conception because there has to be a reason to exonerate the mother, I think they are being told because such information would normally be included in the background information about the child’s parents. Right or wrong, people usually want that information before proceding with the adoption. For instance, if the agency has information that the rapist has a history of breast cancer in his family, then they have to disclose that the father’s identity is known and then provide other information on the rapist, which would lead to the disclosure of the fact that he raped the child’s biological mother. The agency would probably decide that the benefits of knowing that one has a family history of breast cancer in the future outweigh the adoptive parents’ burden in knowing that information, or the child’s burden in knowing it.

    However, if a woman placing a child does not want those circumstances to be disclosed, than the agency should respect that, and I certainly don’t have a problem with an agency not discussing the circumstances of conception.

  • toomanyaborted

    (One would think that the person who is being written about would be allowed to reply.  Apparently not.  I’m reposting my original reply since it was deleted by the host. What is RH Reality Check afraid of?)

     

    Hi Eleanor.  I actually enjoyed our conversation.  I appreciated the questions that delved much deeper than most, who have deep ideological differences, are willing to pursue.  And I do appreciate this article though I profoundly disagree with your depiction of adoption (as would millions of others).  What I love is that you’ve made a truly respectable attempt at conveying my words and passion.  And I thank you for that.

     

    I find it odd, though, that the article is entitled: “…Examining Adoption’s Pitfalls”.  There are no stats.  No cited studies.  Just anecdotal stories that pale in comparison to the depth of longitudinal studies done on adoption (see Rita Simon) that show how positive and healthy adoption is for the birth mother, adoptee, and adoptive parent(s).  But for those who espouse the mantra of pro-choice, this article makes it very clear which option should be chosen.  That’s not very comprehensive. 

     

    I don’t thank any lucky stars.  I thank God.  I thank the heart of selflessness that allowed me to live out my own Possibility.  And although I’m a bit misquoted above (I actually CAN’T imagine what my biological mother’s suffering was like) but I know the result of her decision–endless ripples of my life touching others, serving others, loving others.  And for those who like to focus on the trivial and magnify them to distraction–please learn a little more about adoption.  Adoptive parents are always told as much detail as possible (and, of course, procedures were different in the 70s than they are today).  There is nothing intrusive about adoptive parents being told by an agency of the circumstances surrounding a birth mother’s relinquishing of her child.  My court records were sealed.  I’ll never contact my biological mother but I hope, one day, she’ll know how grateful I am for her brave and painful decision, as conveyed in my song “Meant to Be”.  My wish is that commenters here would see the bigger picture and not be distracted by a stroke on the canvas that they seem to know little about.  (By the way, I don’t have anything to do with creativeminorityreport.com).

     

    And lastly, Eleanor, your quote: “…I know no prochoicer has ever tried to predict a fetus’ future” is in complete contrast to the foundation of pro-choice rhetoric.  It is this exact sentiment that justifies and excuses the abortion, the murder, of so many innocent unborn lives–because “wanted” children are supposedly “loved” children.  From assertions of increased child abuse, to a life of poverty and delinquency, to the burden a child puts on society (all pro-abortion rhetoric) these justifications are exactly those espoused by Planned Parenthood’s founder Margaret Sanger (see clip on http://www.youtube.com/toomanyaborted).  Sanger claims that individuals (like me apparently) are just “marked when they’re born.”  These would be considered predictions.

     

    If those who claim to be “prochoice” truly advocated for adoption, we’d see that reflected in tangible action by this demographic–but we simply don’t.  Planned Parenthood alone aborted over 305,000 children in 2007 versus the referral of 4,912 clients to adoption.  That’s ONE adoption referral for every 62 abortions.  And adoption referrals make no money, whereas 305,000 abortions generated over $180 million for the nation’s largest (nonprofit) abortion provider.

     

    You may typify my opposition as bombastic, but it’s simple language that means a lot to millions of people, especially those women who’ve chosen Life and the children who are now able to live out the beauty of possibility.  Efforts through my nonprofit (The Radiance Foundation) are all rooted in meaningful engagement such as the “Endangered Species” billboards, TooManyAborted.com, and our adoption initiatives which are all about exposing the abortion industry and offering help and hope to birth mothers and compassion and counseling to those devastated by having chosen abortion. 

     

    The fire I believe that is actually stoked by “prochoice” rhetoric (as well as the constant dismissing of those who’ve chosen Life and those who,like I, have the beautiful gift of life) is that burning prolife passion among men and women, particularly the younger generations.  The ideological battle is being lost by those who so adamantly champion for “abortion rights”, because people are waking up to the truth about the abortion industry, the repugnant racist and eugenic history of Birth Control, and the lies that cover up the physical, emotional and medical repercussions of an abortion (we’re going to hit that issue in our next campaign).  The euphemistic veil has been lifted, and people are being set free by the truth.  Unborn lives are being spared by women truly knowing their options and not being force fed decades-old propaganda.

     

    It’s a new day.  And with love, compassion and a penchant to share the truth unapologetically, I am proud to be an anti-abortionist…or rather, as they called it in the days of our society’s other tragedy of humanity, an abolitionist.

     

    -Ryan Bomberger

    Co-Founder, The Radiance Foundation

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • crowepps

    I’m just not sure what the purpose of is including things like the biological parents’ ages and whether they finished high school, etc. Information on medical history, absolutely when that is known, but providing the personal details of life history has a tang of presenting the biological parents and their life situation for ‘approval’ by the adoptive parents that I find kind of distressing.

     

    Right or wrong, people usually want that information before proceding with the adoption.

    While certainly the biological parents would have a need for information about and should have the right to approve or reject a home into which their child will be placed and the persons who would be the future parents, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to me for the adoptive parents to be doing the reverse. I think it’s unlikely that adoptive parents who are coming from the right place psychologically (able to meet the needs of the CHILD) are going to refuse to accept a particular child on the basis of the biological parents’ biographies.

  • progo35

    (One would think that the person who is being written about would be allowed to reply.  Apparently not.  I’m reposting my original reply since it was deleted by the host. What is RH Reality Check afraid of?)

     

    That is very disturbing. Why did you do that, editors of RH? The man IS the subject of this article. It is not fair to delete his reply just because you don’t like what he says, esp. since you won’t delete comments calling for infanticide on the grounds that that is “free” (and not prohibited hate) speech.

  • wendy-banks

    Fighting words From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Fighting words are written or spoken words, generally expressed to incite hatred or violence from their target. Specific definitions, freedoms, and limitations of fighting words vary by jurisdiction. It is also used in a general sense of words that when uttered create (deliberately or not) a verbal or physical confrontation by their mere use.

    [edit] United States

    The fighting words doctrine, in United States constitutional law, is a limitation to freedom of speech as protected by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. In its 9-0 decision, Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire (1942), the U.S. Supreme Court established the doctrine and held that “insulting or ‘fighting words,’ those that by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace” are among the “well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech [which] the prevention and punishment of…have never been thought to raise any constitutional problem.”

    [edit] Chaplinsky decision

    Chaplinsky, a Jehovah’s Witness, had purportedly told a New Hampshire town marshal who was attempting to prevent him from preaching “You are a God-damned racketeer” and “a damned fascist” and was arrested. The court upheld the arrest and wrote in its decision that

    There are certain well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech, the prevention and punishment of which have never been thought to raise any constitutional problem. These include the lewd and obscene, the profane, the libelous, and the insulting or “fighting words” those which by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace. It has been well observed that such utterances are no essential part of any exposition of ideas, and are of such slight social value as a step to truth that any benefit that may be derived from them is clearly outweighed by the social interest in order and morality.

    Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, 1942

    [edit] Post-Chaplinsky

    The court has continued to uphold the doctrine but also steadily narrowed the grounds on which fighting words are held to apply. In Street v. New York (1969)[2], the court overturned a statute prohibiting flag-burning and verbally abusing the flag, holding that mere offensiveness does not qualify as “fighting words”. Similarly, in Cohen v. California (1971), Cohen’s wearing a jacket that said “fuck the draft” did not constitute uttering fighting words since there had been no “personally abusive epithets”; the Court held the phrase to be protected speech. In later decisions—Gooding v. Wilson (1972) and Lewis v. New Orleans (1974)—the Court invalidated convictions of individuals who cursed police officers, finding that the ordinances in question were unconstitutionally overbroad.

    In R.A.V. v. City of St. Paul (1992), the Court overturned a statute prohibiting cross-burning on the grounds that the specific statute was content-based, and even worse, viewpoint-based; i.e., that the statute only limited its proscription to race, religion, creed, etc. The Court, however, made it repeatedly clear that the City could have pursued “any number” of other avenues, and reaffirmed the notion that “fighting words” could be properly regulated by municipal or state governments.

    In Brandenburg v. Ohio (1969), the Court reversed the conviction of a Ku Klux Klan leader accused of advocating violence against racial minorities and the national government, holding that government cannot constitutionally prohibit advocacy of the use of force or of law violation except where such advocacy is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action.

    [edit] See also

    [edit] References

    [edit] External links

    Edited for brevity by me.

  • progo35

    I know the difference, I’m just saying that it would seem that if RH is going to leave comments calling for the murder of disabled infants up, it should leave Ryan’s comments up, since the former is clearly more violent and hateful than anything Ryan said in his post.

  • crowepps

    And I think your description of the post to which you are referring is inaccurate. As I recollect, nobody advocated “the murder of disabled infants” although I could certainly be mistaken, and if I am, would appreciate it if you would provide a link to that post.

  • progo35

    I know the difference, I’m just saying that it would seem that if RH is going to leave comments calling for the murder of disabled infants up, it should leave Ryan’s comments up, since the former is clearly more violent and hateful than anything Ryan said in his post.

  • progo35

    Crowepps,

    Well, it’s up NOW, since he reposted it. Jodi J’s response to the hateful endorsement of infanticide found in response to Amanda M’s article, “The Pro Life Movement’s Hot Rhetoric and all out Lies.” can be found here: http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/commonground/2009/06/24/the-persistent-petitioner. If you want to see the original comment, see Amanda’s article.

  • modernmouse

    I do not base my opinion on my own personal experience but that of hundreds of women with whom I’ve communicated who have lost children to adoption as well as the myriad of books I’ve read.  I am sure there are some girls/women who feel relieved to have surrendered a child they bore to adoption.  Some of them will go on pretending that it never happened.  Others will take glory in being hailed for their ‘gift’ and the adulation will get them far.  For a while.  Show me their support groups.

  • modernmouse

    and you know of the grief surrendering a child brings?  Sorry, but I do not share your belief even though I do respect your opinion to share it.

  • suburbangrrrl

    Am always a few days behind reading these posts.

     

    Crowepps, I can’t speak to Ryan’s situation about his birth history–nor should I. But to answer your broader question as to why parents would be given that information:   information about birth parent’s is first and foremost about the right of a child to know her/his history. All people want to know where they came from and their origins. It is the obligation of the adoptive parents to be guardian’s of the child’s history and to help the child understand her story, ugly truths and all. So the adoptive parents need to have this information because they will be the one’s who will be developmentally guiding their child into integrating that history into her life.

    Some adoptive parents would not at all be comfortable parenting a child with that birth history because of the enormous responsibility in being comfortable in talking to one’s child about it throughout their life. If they don’t feel like they can do it, then they are probably not good candidates to parent that particular child. That child would be much better placed with an adoptive parent who is prepared to take that on.

  • suburbangrrrl

    The adoptive parents should never share that information with anyone other than the child who has a right to know his or her origins just like anyone else. (I disagree with you on this.) But I am appalled when I hear stories such as yours about the adoptive grandmother cavalierly gossiping about your friend’s birthparents. The messages this sends to the child are horrible. Adoptive parents have a responsibility to speak of the child’s birthparents in a nonjudgmental way (hard as it might be in some circumstances.) It is up to the child to create meaning and decide for herself what she thinks about her biological parents.

     

  • suburbangrrrl

    who has an abortion grieves over it. Some do, but plenty don’t. Sorry. And even if both groups grieved “equally” this is one of those false equivalence arguments. There are many more long-term ramifications for giving birth and placing a child for adoption. Ramifications for the mother as well as the child.

     

    I speak as an abortion counselor for an abortion clinic as well as an adoptive mother. Adoption is always an presented as an option for women who come to our clinic. But very few consider it. They intuitively know what Eleanor has discussed in her article. “I could never do that to my baby” is the frequent response. Grief is woven into my child’s life. She is a joyful child, yet there is a wound that is embedded into her body. That wound gets triggered very easily. She has many internal strengths and the intelligence to cope with her loss as her cognitive awareness grows. People assume her life is “better” than if she hadn’t been adopted. I can’t say. Her life is just different. She has lost a lot and sadly, she has no information about her early life.

     

    As much as the anti-choicers would like to make adoption be the simple solution to all that ails us, it’s not.  Life is full of human dilemmas. Adoption does not make the dilemmas of abortion go away. It just creates different dilemmas. No matter what way you slice it, life is full of hard decisions.  The best we can do is to live consciously.

  • paul-bradford

    As much as the anti-choicers would like to make adoption be the simple solution to all that ails us, it’s not.

     

    SuburbanGrrl,

     

    Please don’t assume that all us anti-choicers see adoption as a ‘simple solution’.  It’s not — and for all the reasons you point out.  Oftentimes an adoption is the marriage of two disappointments: 1) A mother who can’t care for her child and 2) A couple (or single parent) who can’t have a child naturally.  The fewer disappointments we have in this world, the fewer adoptions there will be.  Adoption is, in its essence, an attempt to make the best of a bad situation.

     

    Obviously, there are cases where an adopted child grows up to be delighted with her/his adoptive family, adoptive families are often thrilled with their adopted child.  Even natural mothers are known to have expressed some satisfaction that they were able to give their child a ‘better life’.  All of this is true — but it is also true that adoption is, in many cases, accompanied by a conspiracy of silence about how much heartache exists below the surface.

     

    The goal we ought to have in mind is the goal of a world where every couple that conceives a child is a couple that is ready, willing and able to raise that child.  As I’ve said before, every zygote should be a wanted zygote.

  • paul-bradford

    While Bomberger and I don’t hang in the same circles, as far as I know no prochoicer has ever tried to predict a fetus’ future.

     

    Eleanor,

     

    You may not be giving Bomberger’s observation just merit.  Personally, I ‘hang’ in a number of different circles but I rarely if ever talk about abortion in most of those circles.  More often than not, the place where I talk about abortion is here at RHReality Check.  I have read many posts from women who’ve had abortions and from women who’ve counseled those considering abortion and an evaluation of what kind of life the “potential child” might have if it were to be born seems to be a big factor.  I think that this sort of speculation is what Bomberger is talking about.

     

    If we’re going to talk about choice — any kind of choice that anybody makes about anything — we are going to talk about gazing into the crystal ball.  We all try to imagine what kind of outcomes will result from the various options that are before us.  To be fair to Bomberger is to recognize that he’s got a point when he suggests that reproductive rights’ advocates get into discussions about whether a particular fetus could develop into a born person who is able to “live a happy life”.  I’ve detected some decided biases here about which fetuses are, and which aren’t likely to grow up to be happy.

  • crowepps

    You were right, the post was indeed a post in support of infanticide, and the reason it was not removed was given as it not being “a threat against a specific person”.

  • progo35

    Crowepps-

    I think that reason was a pretty lame excuse to tacitly endorse infanticide by using the “specific person” excuse. I don’t buy that if someone wrote “I support infanticide because I don’t want to raise a gay/biracial child,” the editors at RH wouldn’t delete that comment as hate speech. As I’ve pointed out before, this site is overseen by soemone who helped write Oregon’s “death with dignity” law, indicating that RH supports killing the handicapped/ill, either at their behest via assisted suicide, or via their parents request via infanticide of disabled infants, like they do in the Netherlands. Another indication that people on the editorial board support infanticide are posts that laud Peter Singer as a great moral thinker, even though the entire secular disability community has pointed out that he is a rabid ableist who desires to see infanticide legalized and applied to disabled infants who do not suite their parents’ purposes. So, Jodi can say that she finds that post abhorrent, but what I’ve observed here indicates to me that the editors of RH see disability based infanticide as a form of “mercy” rather than bigotry.

  • progo35

    Paul-well said!

  • progo35

    Suburban Girl-

    I have to say that I find your complaint about assumptions about abortion and regret ironic as this article makes the same assumption about adoption-that all women who choose this option grieve and are unhappy with their decision. Although everyone knows how I feel about abortion, I would say that individual reactions can’t necessarily be used to gauge the validity of each choice.

     

    Some women have abortions and feel fine-they may even feel like the abortion helped them to take charge in other areas of their lives. Some women who have abortions feel horrible-they may suffer from depression and negative consequences in other areas of their lives. Likewise with adoption. Like I said in another post, there are plenty of women who do not want to have abortions but do not feel able to raise a child. Thus, they choose adoption. Reactions to that choice will vary among the women who choose it-just like women who choose abortion. A lot of the after-abortion and after-adoption sites I’ve seen include posts by women who have chosen each option and have simultaneous feelings of relief and grief. Such feelings are complicated and probably can’t be summed up as, “I feel sad,” or “I feel happy.”

     

    For instance, I know that my biological mother had an abortion before she gave birth to me. For whatever reason, she felt that abortion was the right choice for her first unplanned pregnancy but not when she was carrying me. Why was that? Was she unhappy after her first abortion and didn’t want to go through that again? Did her opinion about abortion change? Did my biological father’s involvement give her the fortitude to go through the entire pregnancy? Did someone pressure her not to have an abortion during the first or second pregnancy, thus effecting her decision about me? I don’t know, just like I don’t know how she feels about having chosen adoption in my case.

     

     

     

  • crowepps

    It’s my understanding that so long as the posts here fall within the guidelines, that the editors leave them up.  The fact that YOUR posts continue to be up, and Paul’s, and Concerned Mom’s, doesn’t mean that the editors ‘tacitly endorse’ all of YOUR beliefs, does it?  If Jodi says she believes the post is abhorrent but within the guidelines, I haven’t seen anything that indicates Jodi is lying.

     

    Your insistence that desperately ill people should be left unwillingly in a position where they are either forced to endure endless agony during the medicalization of their dying or sneak around and find some way to commit suicide privately and painfully lacks compassion.  As someone who prefers to have the legal option of making my own choices and having the power to decide how much I can endure, I disagree with you, and that’s why I have a living will myself.  That doesn’t mean I advocate killing the handicapped or sick people who prefer to continue their struggle, or that I feel parents should be prevented from treating malformed infants, but rather that I believe competent adults and the parents actually involved in the situation have the most information about their particular situation and should have the right to make their own decisions.

     

    If you want to participate in a forum where the opinions in all the posts conform to your personal standards, and any post containing something you don’t personally like gets deleted, I think you’re going to have to start your own forum.  If people make statements you disagree with, you are certainly capable of posting your disagreement with them, as you have many times in the past, but it seems to me kind of unreasonable to demand a right to make their opinions disappear altogether just because you don’t like them.  I don’t like some of YOUR posts, particularly the ones that contain your delusional and insulting attribution of vile motives to the other participants here, but it would be equally unreasonable of me to assume that my distaste entitles me to demand your posts disappear.

  • progo35

    Although I’d like to, I’m afraid I can’t take the credit for my “lack of compassion,” since that position is shared by every disability rights group in the US. Just a few are:

    Not Dead Yet

    The American Association of People with Disabilities

    ADAPT

    FRIDA

    National Youth Leadership Network

    Jodi and Friends

    The Ragged Edge Newspaper (see an article on AS/euthanasia here: http://www.raggededgemagazine.com/departments/closerlook/000749.html

    The World Institute on Disability

    TASH

     

    So, while I’d like to accept the mantle of responsibility for opposing the killing of newborns by doctors and exploiting the desperation of handicapped people so that society doesn’t have to pay for their care, I just can’t-opposition to such practices is already widespread.

     

    Moreover, I would like to point out that the post supporting infanticide DID single out a particular GROUP of people-the handicapped. The post didn’t say, “I support infanticide, why should I have to take care of a child I don’t want?,” it said, “I support infanticide, why should I have to raise a child with autism or down syndrome?”

  • crowepps

    That was pretty much a waste of time, wasn’t it?  I tried to make it clear that I was specifically addressing my initial comment to who should be able to make decisions in cases of FATAL ILLNESSES and yet your response is about “the killing of newborns by doctors” and “exploiting the desperation of handicapped people so that society doesn’t have to pay for their care”.

     

    Newflash: Society is economically broken.  Thanks to decades of conservative cooperation in deregulation of every form of government oversight that tried to rein in the short-sighted greed of corporations and the resultant financial disasters, society CAN’T AFFORD to continue to pay. 

  • progo35

    “That was pretty much a waste of time, wasn’t it?  I tried to make it clear that I was specifically addressing my initial comment to who should be able to make decisions in cases of FATAL ILLNESSES and yet your response is about “the killing of newborns by doctors” and “exploiting the desperation of handicapped people so that society doesn’t have to pay for their care”.

     
    But the killing of newborns was what the comment we’re disussing addressed. You were the one who seemed to support such measures by responding only that “not supporting the right of people to make these decisions show a lack of compassion,” and then used the phrase “fatal illness” to pertain to our conversation, which indicates to me that you see at least some disabilities as fatal illnesses. You didn’t come right out and say, “I am against the infanticide of disabled infants,” you overshot the issue by trying to confuse it with something else.

    “Newflash: Society is economically broken.  Thanks to decades of conservative cooperation in deregulation of every form of government oversight that tried to rein in the short-sighted greed of corporations and the resultant financial disasters, society CAN’T AFFORD to continue to pay.”

    See, this is what I’m talking about. You say that I’m mischaracterizing your statements when you continue to say things that indicate that you support what I accused you of supporting, which is ending the lives of handicapped people to save society money (if they agree or are too young to make the decision themselves). Why else would you respond to my concerns with a statement about the economy?

  • colleen

    That was pretty much a waste of time, wasn’t it?

    of all conversation with Progo and her sock puppets. It’s so difficult to try to reason with someone when they’re (metaphorically) throwing their own stinky feces at you.

  • progo35

    “stinky feces”

    WOW, Colleen. THAT was mature.

  • jodi-jacobson

    I can assure you that no one at RHRC deliberately deleted your post.

     

    It is possible that in deleting numerous spam emails yours was inadvertently deleted, but I do not know that is the case.

     

    I am pretty sure to know when any discussion about a non-spam post takes place, and no such discussion was held by staff or consultants.

     

  • brady-swenson

    Hello Ryan,

    My apologies for the accidental deletion of your original comment, it must have been my error made while clearing out comment spam.  I am glad you were able to repost your comment here. 

    Brady Swenson

    RH Reality Check

  • crowepps

     You were the one who seemed to support such measures by responding only that “not supporting the right of people to make these decisions show a lack of compassion,” and then used the phrase “fatal illness” to pertain to our conversation, which indicates to me that you see at least some disabilities as fatal illnesses.

    Did I SAY that the fatal illnesses I was talking about were mere ‘disabilities’?  No, I did not say that.  I was actually thinking of what MOST people think of when they talk about euthanasia and Living Wills: end stage cancer, Alzheimer’s, kidney failure and other FATAL ILLNESSES.  You may choose to redefine those into ‘disabilities’ but everybody else in the world uses a common vocabulary which considers these FATAL ILLNESSES.

    Why else would you respond to my concerns with a statement about the economy?

    Because once again YOU brought it up with your comment about ‘society promotes infanticide because it doesn’t WANT to spend the money’.

     

    YOU are the one insisting that no matter how grotesque the malformation or how hopeless the prognosis, there should be money to PAY those costs although you’ve certainly never identified a SOURCE OF FUND.  YOU are the one whose iteration is that potential parents faced with a decision about a ‘disabled fetus’ shouldn’t even consider costs in making a decision because it’s more important to be ProLife than solvent.  And yet I have read one article after another about how programs for ALREADY EXISTING disabled children are being gutted.  Here’s another from the news today.

    In Arizona, a program that helped blind high school students care for themselves and find jobs is suspended. In South Carolina, all five state-run group homes for kids closed and a program that helped paroled youths get jobs is shuttered. And in Hawaii, a program to reduce child abuse and neglect was cut so much that two years after serving 4,000 families, it now serves 100.

    All over the country, the financial crisis has forced states to make historic cuts to close what the National Conference of State Legislatures found was an overall budget gap of $174.1 billion this fiscal year and has lawmakers looking to trim another $89 billion next year. That means slashing services to the one population they’ve long protected: children.

    The scope of the cuts is unprecedented, child advocates say. Hit are programs that addressed everything from childhood obesity to child abuse, and from prenatal care to preschool inspections. Some can’t serve as many kids, while others are forced to deal with monthslong delays and many programs simply disappear.

    “We were really taken aback at just the sheer magnitude of the cuts,” said Linda Smith, executive director of the National Association of Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies, which released a study in January that found programs for children were cut or eliminated in more than 40 states.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100516/ap_on_bi_ge/us_budget_crisis_children;_ylt=AjIRLT5N24r9prZ8QiO18b9vzwcF;_ylu=X3oDMTJ1bjltMDJzBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMTAwNTE2L3VzX2J1ZGdldF9jcmlzaXNfY2hpbGRyZW4EcG9zAzgEc2VjA3luX2FydGljbGVfc3VtbWFyeV9saXN0BHNsawNzdGF0ZXNidWRnZXQ-

    I don’t think ‘society promotes infanticide to save money’ but rather that the fact that society does not HAVE ANY MONEY except what it can get from people (in the taxes you oppose) leaves couples in a place where they choose mid-term abortion because they know that they ARE NOT GOING TO BE ABLE TO AFFORD the necessary medical, rehabilitative and supervisory care for a gravely malformed fetus, especially when attempting to do so means the children they already HAVE will descend with them into bankruptcy and poverty.

     

    There is a huge difference between recognizing reality and being IN SUPPORT of the way reality works.  Actually, if we’re going to live in the Land of Wish, the Realm of Should, and base our positions on Ought To Be, I don’t ‘support’ faulty genetic recombination in the first place but instead that aspect of reproduction worked flawlessly so that extra 21st chromosome wasn’t ever present to damage people’s children.