Society is a flexible structure. Only this way it can serve the best way for its members. Democratic process is aimed to increase the rights of its citizens. Nowadays the theme of sexuality becomes an important social issue. Recognition of rights of homosexuals is an important process, which signifies that a lot of people are ready to express freely their sexual preferences and are ready to fight for their rights. Legalization of homosexual marriages and the right of such couples to adopt children is an important and controversial issue of our time.
“Researchers estimate that the total number of children nationwide living with at least one gay parent ranges from six to 14 million” (Gottman, 105).
At the present moment many countries legalized the right of lesbian and gay couples to adapt children. Such countries as Andorra, Belgium, Guam, Iceland, the Netherlands, Sweden, South Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom. It is also legal in some separate parts of the Australia, Canada and the United States. In the United States of America 22 states allow lesbian and gay couples to adopt children.
The issue is so burning because for homosexual parents adopting becomes the only way to have a child. Even the artificial insemination can not be applied in all cases. First of all this method can be used only for lesbian couples. In addition another spouse form the couple has to adopt a child in order to become his legal parent. For gay couples this method can not be applied. In addition, adopting is a right of each person. That is the reason the question is more important than just an opportunity for homosexual couples to have children.
Gays: A Struggle for Acceptance " When the dust settles and the pages of history are written, it will not be the angry defenders of intolerance who have made the difference, that reward will go to those who dared to step outside the safety of their privacy in order to expose and rout the prevailing prejudice.' - John Shelby Spong Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of Newark, NJ November 21, 1996 ...
In April 2001 Holland enlarged the definition of marriage and enabled the people of the same sex to get married. Same did Belgium in 2003. The next was Canada. Same sex couples can get married in San Francisco since February 12 of the 2004, because of an action by their mayor. The question of the legislation of homosexual marriages becomes more and more burning and needs a deep survey. There are a lot of reasons against same sex marriages. One of the reasons is that homosexual marriages contradict the tradition.
The idea of homosexual marriages threats the very idea of the sanctity of the marriage. The term “marriage” should refer to a loving relationship between man and woman. The institution of marriage considers the union of two adults of different sex living together. For centuries the marriage was considered just between the people of the opposite sex and by now the marriage of the people of the same sex can be wrong on an evolutionary scale (Coolidge, 1997).
People don’t have much faith in the marriage institutions now and the legislation of the heterosexual marriages can weaken this faith.
In addition, if the homosexual marriages are legalized to protect the freedom of human why there should be other restrictions for the marriages such as marring the relative or the age of getting married? So called domino effect can cause the demand to cancel all kinds of restrictions on the marriages. If the marriages between the people of the same sex can be accepted like a demonstration of the free will of the individuals, why can’t be accepted the marriage between the brother and the sister or other close relatives?
In the case of legalization of homosexual marriages we speak only about the rights of homosexual people. The issue becomes much more complicated when it comes to adopting children. In this case the rights of both, homosexual parents and the rights of adopted children should be considered. Since children are not able to express their own will during the process of adoption, the society must make an important choice deciding on the rights of children. From the other hand it is necessary to mind the right of homosexual couples, who also have their rights and desires.
... physical well-being are enhanced by marriage, and that children of same-sex couples benefit from being raised by two parents within a legally recognized union ... opposite sex, but some allow forms of polygamous marriage, and some recognize same-sex marriage. In recent news there was an argument asking, Should homosexuals ...
There are many arguments pro and contra adopting children by homosexual couples. Those who stand for giving homosexual couples this right state that all people must have rights to adopt children. If both parents are able to give their child all normal conditions for living, there is no reason to ban homosexual parents to adopt children. Those, who are against this right, state that homosexual couple will not be able to provide normal life conditions for children. In this case the question about “normality” arises.
Social norms are expanded with each year. Homosexual relations, which were considered sinful and even criminal several centuries ago, become a social norm nowadays. This means that the meaning of “normal” family structure and “normal” life conditions can also be transformed with the flow of time. Those, who support an idea to give the right of adopting to homosexual couples state that many children wait for adoption and giving this right to homosexual couple would help to improve the situation.
In addition specialists, who stand for the legalization of the right of homosexual couples to adopt children state that only small number of children from heterosexual families have normal life conditions. “Most children in the United States do not live with two married parents. In fact, according to the 2000 census, only 24% homes were composed of a married mother and father with children living at home. ” (Green,1978, p. 19) In the case with homosexual family the children will have two parents, even if they are of the same sex. In “normal” families children often have only one parent.
The proponents of legalization of adoption give data, which proves that children, grown up in one-parent and homosexual families, have same level of emotional and social adaptation as children from heterosexual families. This means that homosexuality of parents has little effect on the development of a child. As state specialists, children are more influenced by their relations with their parents and social surrounding than by the sexual orientation of their parents. Even the American Association of Paediatrics agreed with this opinion and supported the legalization of adoption.
Paraphrase: Normally the nuclear family is the ideal family in American society, which consists of a husband, wife, and their children whom they had together. In today’s society there have been some radical changes in the country’s family structures. Most families now are single-parent families. Summary: Over the past couple decades; the choosing of being a single-parent family has become more ...
In addition, if we turn to legal issues, there is no official reasons to ban homosexual couples to adapt children. There is no special amendment in the Constitution, which would deny gay and lesbian couples their rights to adopt children. Most courts, which should make a decision concerning adopting, are be driven by the interests of a child. It is evident that for children having non-traditional family with loving parents is much better than not have any. If sexual orientation of parents has little impact on the living conditions of their children, homosexuality of parents should not be an obstacle for adopting of a child.
There are no serious objections, which would prove that gay and lesbian couples will make bad parents. “Home environments with lesbian and gay parents are as likely to successfully support a child’s development as those with heterosexual parents” (Schelberg, Mitnick 2006) Specialists state that here is not connection between sexual orientation and parenting skills. This means that homosexual people can be perfect parents, same as heterosexual people can be bad ones. In addition there is a legal controversy, concerning the right to adoption.
Legally, even single parents have right to adopt children. Here arises a kind of controversy since one person can adopt a child but he or she can not do the same thing if he has a spouse of the same sex. Those, who stand against the legalization of homosexual’s right to adopt a child give their arguments in order to support their position. They state that homosexual environment can have an extremely negative effect on child’s development. Some researches (Golombok, Tasker) state that children, raised by homosexual parents, are more likely to adopt same patterns of sexual behaviour.
In other words children, raised in homosexual families have more chances to become homosexuals as well. As Golombok and Tasker state: “by creating a climate of acceptance or rejection of homosexuality within the family, parents may have some impact on their children’s sexual experimentation as heterosexual, lesbian or gay” (Golombok, Tasker, 1993, p. 124).
... children use to avoid threatening situations. Children of homosexual families often attempt to control their parent's ... homosexual family; without a support system the likelihood of instability within the family becomes greater. Advocates of gay ... relation to their parent's sexuality. Another control strategy, which is used to prepare an individual for a future encounter with the homosexual parent, ...
According to their opinion homosexual couples should not be giving a right to adoption. Sexuality is not only personal affair. It’s also social phenomenon society has to deal with.
Woodhorse talks about the fortification of gender roles and restrictions to this roles brought to the social culture by transvestites. He believes that cross-dressing and transvestites make a potential danger for the society as it can lead to the displacement of gender categories and gender roles. “On a social and cultural level the two groups (male and female) are equally restricted. ” (Woodhouse,1996, p. 117).
The marriage is an institution aiming to create a family first of all and the family presumes giving birth to children.
Homosexual marriage create no opportunities for natural reproduction. Modern science gave people opportunities to have children even in the same sex marriage but a number of problems appear. It’s commonly known that men and women are equal creatures and have same rights and obligations but they are not identical and usually presume different models of behavior, models of reactions and thinking. A lot of research made by scientists proves that the child needs both – a mother and a father to become a full personality (Donovan, 2001).
There are some things during the upbringing which can be taken only from women’s or only from men’s behavior patters. The children raised in the homosexual families will not have the opportunity to see both –female and male behavioral patters, which can cause serious problems for their future life. In addition the children raised in a homosexual surrounding are more probably to pick up same lifestyle in the future and to copy the model of homosexual relationship. Another problem the children from the homosexual families can and most probably will come across is an attitude of the surrounding.
The children can meet a social hostility from the very beginning of their social interaction due to their family background which can make more difficult the social adaptation in the future (Stone 2006).
Among the gay press's responses to my 1993 book A Place at the Table was the charge by some critics that I'm 'sex-negative.' Frank Browning griped that I want to 'to have everyone put on 30 pounds, buy a Brooks Brothers suit, and wander off on the golf links, becoming [an] upper-class version of Ozzie and Harry. Those who don't want to take risks should join Mr. Bawer on the golf course. Those who ...
A lot of homosexual couples meet social and religious disapproval but they have chosen their type of behavior themselves and must be responsible for their decisions. The children raised in the homosexual families do not have this choice. Negative attitude of the church to same sex marriages can create additional problems for children. Another problem appears with the children, adopted by gay couples.
The patters of family behavior, which are presented in homosexual families, are very different from patterns, peculiar to heterosexual families. This issue is very important since children most probably will adapt the type of relations they see in their family. Homosexual relations usually are thought to be not traditional ones and talking about sexuality in this type of relations is difficult due to the multiple variations of these relations. There are a lot of distinctions between homosexual and heterosexual relationships. Complementary nature of the most heterosexual relations is not so evident in homosexual ones.
In most of the homosexual relations there is a division, which is expressed more directly in heterosexual relations. In homosexual relations two people take different roles. Usually, in both, female and male homosexual relationship there are active and passive partners. The roles may change but usually the division to active and passive partner is saved and this relation is usually transmitted to other spheres of life of the couple. Passive partner usually takes female roles in sex and everyday behaviour. An active partner plays the role of the man accordingly. There are derivations in the models of homosexual relations.
Tapinc (1992) distinguishes four additional models of homosexual relations. In the first model both males are homosexual. This is one of traditional homosexual models. “The homosexual mail pair consists of the erastes and the eromenos, ‘lover’ and ‘beloved’; we can infer an active/passive division, but strictly speaking these are not examples of inserter/receptor terminology. (Norton, p. 2002 5) Homosexual male relations are rarely monogamous. Journal of Sex Research made a study of the sexual profiles of 2,583 older homosexuals. “Research found that only 2.
7 percent claimed to have had sex with one partner only. Research elsewhere indicated that only a few homosexual relationships last longer than two years, with many men reporting hundreds of lifetime partners” (Bozett 1993, p. 112).
... are some of the issues gay and lesbian families may bring to counseling. When a homosexual family enters counseling, a mental health ... According to this belief, without the input of both sexes a child will experience difficulties adjusting to life in general. ... be sexually abused, become homosexual themselves or otherwise less healthy or have difficulty with social relations. Although research has not ...
This way if homosexual parents get an opportunity to adopt children, this most probably will result in the transformation of the role and functions of family. Children, grown up in such untraditional families with untraditional family values, will use this model in their future families. This may result in the increase of the families with untraditional family values.
Possible consequences of this phenomenon are very hard to predict. To sum up, there are many reasons for and against adopting children by gay and lesbian couples, There is no one definite opinion concerning this issue. The debates concerning this subject are hold in several spheres, such as religions, social and political ones. A lot of important factors should be considered in order to take a right decision concerning this issue. Adopting concerns the rights of both – children and homosexual couples and decision should the best way serve to the interests of both sides.
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“Same-Sex Marriage: the Evolving Landscape for Employee Benefits,”