In my opinion, Governor Bevin of Kentucky has a lot in common with the moron who currently occupies the White House. I am not a fan.
Governor Bevin has some adopted children, though, and seems to have a wee bit of a bee in his bonnet about adoptions and foster care in Kentucky and thinks it needs to be totally redone.
In that, he and I are in agreement.
The problem is that that’s the only thing we seem to agree about.
For instance, in the article referenced, it states that the average social worker in Kentucky makes a whopping $38,780. Imagine being a single parent and trying to live on that.
So, to fix everything, Bevin goes out and hires a fucking preacher. A preacher.
Let that sink in a minute.
He hired a preacher and he’s gonna pay him a quarter of a million dollars to do what, exactly?
The man, Daniel Dumas, graduated from Criswell College and The Master’s Seminary. I assure you that the “Master” part of The Master’s Seminary is not a reference to a master’s degree. Those are religious schools that churn out . . . preachers.
After serving as a fucking preacher for a while, he got a job at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Guess what they do at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
They churn out. . . preachers.
And please tell me, please, what in the hell a preacher knows about how to go about making laws and setting up the bureaucracy necessary to successfully and fairly deal with the state’s adoption and foster care system.
Oh. But there’s this.
He has some adopted kids.
Oh, well, that’s different.
He adopted some kids.
So many of them have done it that it’s a bit of a fad.
After Nathan was born, we tried to have another baby, unsuccessfully. As it turned out, we were very lucky that we even had him at all. After several years of testing and medication (I actually got the shots that sometimes produce multiples after spending several months taking Clomid), we finally gave up. We pulled all the boxes of neatly stored baby clothes, all sized in groups (newborn, 6-9 months, etc), and had a yard sale.
The good news was the birth control became a non-issue, which saved us a bundle.
During that time, we were deeply enmeshed in the Fundy Church From Hell and I felt the pressure. Nathan “needed” a little brother or sister, and it was our duty to provide him with one. Hell, it was “God’s” will.
They don’t preach it from the pulpit exactly, certainly not in the those words, but you get the message anyway. It comes with being asked to keep the nursery even though you don’t use the damn nursery, with being invited to one baby shower after another and facing the “when is Nathan going to get a little sister” questions. It comes with the whole “being a parent is a calling from God” thing that permeates the atmosphere.
It’s the not-so-subtle message that “God” favors those who have lots of kids, having “filled their quivers” and “blessed” them. The opposite of that, of course, is that we were shitty parents and so “God,” after giving us a chance, said “fuck that” and didn’t give us any more “blessings.”
And that’s the message that these fundigelical adopters are sending: It’s “God’s” will for you to adopt babies. Lots and lots of babies. If you are like me and Dave and can’t have them, then adopt them. Save them from hell. Bring them up with Jesus on their minds and look at the rewards you’ll get in heaven.
When you think about it, it’s a kind of natural progression from “abortion is murder” to “adoption is sacred.” For years, those of us who are pro-choice derided the religious right for being “pro-birth” and not really “pro-life.” They insisted that women serve as unwilling incubators for unwanted babies, but they didn’t want the babies themselves.
And finally, it seems, they got the message and started to adopt.
Only they found all those pesky laws and inspections and waiting and all that to be just a total pain in the ass. They wanted a baby right now.
So many of them decided to bypass the American adoption system (it’s really 50 different systems, but all of them have fairly serious laws involved regarding things like stripping a biological parent of their rights) and went overseas. And there was a real surge in children being adopted into fundigelical families from Asia, or from Africa.
Furthermore, the idea here is to adopt babies. Fundigelical families have only one goal and his name is Jesus. To get kids properly indoctrinated, you need ’em young. Really young. Like infants.
And there aren’t that many infants available for adoption in America. A lot of adoptable kids are older. Some are special needs kids. Much harder to win those crowns with those kids than with a nice malleable baby.
The result of all this was almost inevitable and predictable. There were a whole bunch of overseas adoptions by couples who were entirely unprepared for the cross-cultural dynamics that came into play and there were also the disasters.
In part because nobody saw this coming, and in part due to the whole parental rights (“muh rights”) thing, some of these adoptive parents just give up and either send the kid back to whatever country they came from or treat them like dogs and “rehome” them.
Adoption is not like having a biological child. It just isn’t. The adopted child has a set of genes and a history that the parents do not share. Expecting it to be all kittens and roses is unrealistic. And I know what happens to fundigelical adoptive parents when they hit a severe roadblock.
They are expected to ask Jesus to work it out.
What they need is a social worker who can help them get some counseling, but what they get is prayer.
I am critical as hell of the situation that exists in Breckinridge County right now with regards to CPS and what they are not doing. I don’t like the terribly lax, pretty much non-existent and certainly unenforced homeschooling laws that exist at the moment. I don’t like it one bit that a family can live in a garden shed without any utilities at all and nobody bats an eye.
But hiring an overpaid consultant whose only claim to expertise is a stint at a couple of Bible colleges, a gig as a fucking preacher, and then serving on the administration of a seminary isn’t going to fix anything.
Bevin is an idiot, and those are my tax dollars and I don’t like it a little bit.