Friday, November 26, 2010

Race, Religion, Foster Care, Adoption, and Cultural Genocide

"I believe that there will ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those that do the oppressing. I believe that there will be a clash between those who want freedom, justice and equality for everyone and those who want to continue the systems of exploitation." ~ Malcolm X

Over this past week during Nation Adoption Awareness Month, I have not only read things that have made me shake my head, but have straight up pissed me off!  

Let me start off with this from Malinda at AdoptionTalk: Race-Based Adoption Fees, then on to this little gem that Cricket at out of the fog called to our attention: 

10 Days Left for National Adoption Month Promotional Pricing – Don’t Miss Out

November 21st, 2010 | Author: Carol Shepherd
In recognition of November as National Adoption Month and in an effort to help all of our prospective adoptive parents in these difficult economic times of today, we have made the decision to lower our fees for the BI-RACIAL THROUGH CAUCASIAN program to $5000 total and the FULL AFRICAN AMERICAN PROGRAM TO $3000.
You can call us to schedule a day and time for a free, informational phone consultation where you will get detailed information on our program.  We do phone meetings during the day, lunch times, evenings and even weekends to accommodate your busy schedules.
We look forward to hearing from you, and we will be grateful if you take advantage of this extremely attractive offer.  Here at Everlasting, we feel we have been very blessed in life.  We want to make the blessing of building your family through the miracle of adoption more affordable to YOU in these challenging times.
We are only offering this pricing for the month of NOVEMBER.  Please consider taking advantage of this for the short time it is being offered.  Email: or call
Please click on our SUCCESS STORIES tab while you are visiting our website.  We are very proud, and we would be grateful if you allowed us to be the ones that guide and support you through your entire adoption journey.
God Bless You All Always,
The Staff at Everlasting Adoptions”

I decided to reprint the post in its entirety since Carol has since decided to remove it.

Yeah, yeah, I know.  I called the number thinking it must be a satire like The Onion or something…it was just to crass to be for real, nobody could possibly have that bad of taste to talk about actual human babies this way, what ever the race.  

My god Only 10 days left to get your bump and dent black baby on a 40 % off clearance sale.   We are talking about babies, children, humans on what could be best described as a K-Mart blue light special.  Hurry on down!

When Carol from Everlasting Adoptions answered the phone, I was so shocked I hung up.  Then I thought what, am I in high school? so I called her back and apologized for being rude and immature,  and said that I was just calling to see if she was from a real agency or if her post was just a bad joke.  She wondered why I would have thought it was a joke.  Well, to those of us who were in foster care or adopted, you know abandoned by our parents in any way, the wording was a little offensive.  Humm, I have getting a lot of comments on it, and I don’t understand she said.  I must say she sounded truly hurt that her post might have been offended anyone, and she just had no clue how it could have.  

Personally I grew up in foster care I said, side by side with black children and somehow the thought that I, with my red hair and blue eyes alone would fetch a whole 40% more on the auction block than my best friend would, who was better behaved and a better student than I was, some how dose not sit well with me at all. 

How am I supposed to look my black friends in the eye now that I know I am worth so much more them in U S dollars?

It was not just the black babies who were being discounted for “National Adoption Month” it was a special for all of them, and it is not the price for the child it was the price for advertising to get birth mothers, she explained as if that made anymore sense and was any less offensive. 

…And that’s another thing I said, it is National Adoption Awareness Month, not National Adoption Month.  It was founded and is meant to call attention to and highlight adopting children out of the FOSTER CARE SYSTEM, not private infant adoption. And I as a former foster child who had friends growing up who were available to be adopted but who never were, I would appreciate it if you private adoption folks would refrain form honing in on OUR MONTH.  We foster kids always get the short end of the stick as it is, we don’t need our month over run with Blue-light specials on yet unborn babies!  There enough kids here already who need homes, we don’t need you advertising to create anymore!  

So you are NOT interested in adopting a child? What!  Are we not having the same conversation here?  No, no, I am not.  If we were ever to consider adopting a child it would be out of the foster care system.  I would never be comfortable adopting a child in a private adoption, especially where pre-birth matching was involved.  I am the third generation of my family affected by adoption and child abandonment, I know first hand the pain that creates for the children involved and it never goes away.   As a matter of fact it carries over, generation after generation.  I would never want to be a part of starting that cycle in another family.  I told her.

She said I had made her think about things a little differently, she was sorry that her post had offended people; she said she thought maybe she should take it down.  Her passion is in helping people create families.  She had not intended to hurt anyone.  She truly meant that, I could hear it in her voice.  I told her that I would be writing my own post about this; and that if creating families is truly her passion maybe she would consider talking to adult adoptees about their experiences so she could have a better understanding of how children are affected by adoption.  Yes, she said, she would be open to that.

There is the thing; folks…so many people involved in child abandonment, adoption, foster care think they have good intentions.   But action without understanding the long-term ramifications has long lasting consequences.

Since my post is already at 1,236 words, I will be continuing with may rant series on Race, Religion, Foster Care, Adoption, and Cultural Genocide in another post. 

* This post is a part of my National Adoption Awareness Month, a post every day in November campaign, to remind perspective adoptive parents that there are 140,000 kids for whom family preservation is not an option, who through no fault of their own are currently available for adoption in the U. S. foster care system, right here in our own back yard.  If you are considering adoption please consider adopting a foster child or becoming a foster parent.  It could change a child’s life.


Von said...

Oh so very true, the thoughtlessness, the naivity from people who could know better.

Anonymous said...

Your approach was wonderful. Despite her unbelievable insensitivity, you connected with this person and tried to educate her. (Yes, it is hard to believe anyone could be *that* oblivious while writing down the amounts next to the dollar signs . . .) What impresses me is that you didn't use your blog as a platform to call her a cow so that twenty other people could line up to call her something worse and then call it a day. I really hope she's learned something.


Anonymous said...

Sunday - what a wonderful post and you have made someone think. Excellent work!

maryanne said...

Great post and you showed real class in dealing with a nasty and insulting situation.

My mathematically and historically wise husband and son pointed out to me that the price for a black child was three fifths of that for a white or mixed child. They were only following the US Constitution which before the 14th Ammendment said that a black person counted as three fifths of a white person in the census!! See " three fifths compromise "The compromise was a mere mathematical formula which was a convenient way of stating that slaves should not be counted as persons. The southern states wanted to count slaves as 'persons' not for their improvement, but for artificially increasing their representation in the House."

It is only fitting that black children be sold for 3/5th the price. It's the American Way (ugh!)

Powered by Blogger