Uncle Roger's Notebooks of Daily Life

Introduction

My life is, to me, ripe with frequent challenges, occasional successes, spontaneous laughter, adequate tears, and enough *life* to last me a lifetime. To you, however, it surely seems most pedestrian. And therefore, I recycle the name I used previously and call this my Notebooks of Daily Life. Daily, because it's everyday in nature, ordinary. These conglomeration of events that are my life are of interest to me because I live it, perhaps mildly so to those who are touched by it, and could only be of perverse, morbid curiosity to anyone else. Yet, I offer them here nonetheless. Make of them what you will, and perhaps you can learn from my mistakes.


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Friday, November 14, 2008

Break it down for me

According to a UK poll, more than a third of the people surveyed believe gay couples and single people should be prohibited from adopting kids. Of those, three-quarters said that allowing gays and individuals to adopt "would lead to the breakdown of the traditional family." Okay, so I have a simple question about that: How?

How, exactly, would letting gay couples care for and make part of their family kids who otherwise would have no family "lead to the breakdown of the traditional family"? Since those kids aren't part of a "traditional family" or even any family, how is giving them a non-traditional family going to be any worse? Or is it that somehow, the fact that these kids become part of a non-traditional family going to start making straight parents break up their families? Or, rather, make straight parents break up their families more than they already do?

If the divorce rates were so low as to be virtually non-existant and there were no cases of spousal abuse, I could see the argument that straight parents were doing such a good job that gay parents would have to match that, but the fact is, straight parents get divorced, beat each other -- and their kids, sometimes -- up, and generally shouldn't be running around pointing fingers at others.

Don't believe me? Consider these shining examples of heterosexuality: O.J. Simpson, Robert Blake, Scott Peterson, Mark Hacking, and Hans Reiser. Or Josef Fritzl. There's a parent for you.

Think about, too, the number of heterosexual people who cheat on their spouses or beat them up or simply leave. Something like half of all marriages end in divorce -- how many people do you know who are still married to their first spouse? How many friends do you have whose parents are still married?

Now, I'm not saying that these things do not happen in the gay community, but they certainly don't occur any more than they do among straight couples -- and, if media coverage is any indication, these problems are far less common among gays.

As for the need for both a male and female role model, is that what kids of divorced couples have? Either the answer is no or you're okay with part-time role models. If the latter, how is that any different from all the involved people who are role models but aren't biological or legal parents? My kids have more than a dozen "parents" that care for them, watch out for them, discipline them, and so on. Some are aunts and uncles or grandparents and some are just part of our community of families. We've got Ph.D's, chefs, teachers, techies, and more to watch over our kids and help us raise them. Every one of them is a role model, some male and some female. Gay couples and individuals, likewise, never really raise children alone, in a vacuum. There are always other people involved in a child's life, of both genders.

So, I'm sorry, but I just don't buy it.

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