Thursday, April 29, 2010


There are over 500,000 children in foster care every year but only about a quarter of these children are available for adoption. About 120,000 children are adopted in the United States every year but many of those children are infants or newborns. Older children tend to end up in foster care and wait for years to get adopted because they are less desirable than babies.

In 2009 12,753 foreign children were adopted by American families. Over the past 15 years 200,000 foreign children have been adopted by American families. I don't think there is anything wrong with foreign adoption but it seems silly to travel half way around the world and spend your life savings on a toddler from China when they there are literally thousands of American children waiting for homes.

All of these celebrities adopting "ethnic babies" frustrates me. At least Sandra Bullock adopted a baby from New Orleans. I'm talking to you Madonna, Angelina Jolie, you ladies who have made your little foreign babies the newest fashion accessory. Its great that you want to help out 3rd world countries by bringing their unwanted children to the US for a completely spoiled life but why not look a little closer to home. We have plenty of problems right here that you could help with.

Some people are upset that Sandra Bullock's baby is black but lets be realistic: there are more black children available for adoption than there are black families to adopt them. 26% of all black children adopted in the US are adopted by non-black families. I think its much more important for a child to live in a home with people that love him/her than for that child, regardless of whether or not they look like their adopted family, to never have a permanent home. It's definitely better than staying in the foster care system until an appropriate black couple comes along (which may not ever happen).

About 30,000 children age out of the foster care system every year. 25% of these children will become homeless. 56% will be unemployed. 27% of the males will end up in jail. Another 30,000 children are dropped by the foster care system every year because they run away and the government can no longer track them. That means half of the children who are available for adoption will have a very sad ending.

Should the government do more to support those children who age out of the system to make them more successful? Should there be more incentives for American families to adopt American children? Well of course but that's not enough. No matter how many specials that PBS and HBO put together showing how fantastic it is to adopt an older child there will always be those people who must have a baby. They say they won't be able to bond with an older child or that they aren't prepared to deal with the issues that an older child might bring.

When people have children naturally there is always the risk of a number of diseases and disabilities. Some parents put these children up for adoption because it is too much to handle but most of them accept that this is their responsibility. That it must have been part of some divine plan for them and they make the most of it. Why can't it be part of some divine plan for you to take home a 7 year old with ADD? If you don't give him a chance, no one else might either.

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