Tuesday, October 30, 2007
The truth is, this law was flawed from the start. I know because I'm the first dumbass taken in by the carnival hucksters up at CalState DSS-ASU who promoted this swindle as if they thought of it themselves. Which any sane person would know cannot be true because none of those clowns have ever had an original thought in their heads to speak of. But, at least it was free. Which is about all one could say for it. However, a certain Lori Walbridge up at DSS-ASU was rather unhappy with the law. She said, "Well! It's nothing more than a back-door attempt at getting the identity of the birth parents!" Oh, horrors! We can't have that! Someone might have to act like an adult! Well, anyway, I was asking Lori for the paperwork to fill out for this atrocity when she stated they didn't have any. That it would take a year to put something together. Lori regaled me with how swamped they were with this new law. Uh-huh. Then how come my ticket says "Customer 001", Lori? Well, finally, I talked to Don Mencarini who said I need to petition the court of my adoption because they need to appoint the CI. I said, come on, Don! I've already wasted a week here on these phone calls! Why not use me as a test subject and we can work together to make this better for people. No, says, Don, petition the court.
Fine. So that's what I did and quoted the law to the letter in my petition. Do you suppose a family court judge knows family law? If you said "yes", you would be wrong. Why, that's what the Legal Research Department is for, wouldn't you know? Indeed, a judge earns the Big Bucks to sit there and let someone else interpret the law. The judge evidently could not look up this law herself. I guess all those books you see in judges' offices on TV are actually purchased from "Books By The Yard" and have such lawyerly titles as "Mating Habits of Mediterranean Fruit Flies" and "Collector's Guide To Nineteenth Century Austrio-Hungarian Postage Stamps". Because, it would appear the state law books are not present to be consulted. So that's where my petition sat for over 30 days. In Legal Research while some paralegal probably fresh out of matchbook-cover paralegal correspondence school perused this law to see that the law I quoted word-for-word---gee, imagine that!---matched the one in the law book the judge should have cracked open herself. She was probably too busy denying some adoptee petitions for original birth certificates, so I guess it's to be expected.
The day arrived when I got the ruling from the judge and she had to rule in my favor as much as she probably wished she didn't have to. But she covered her six by making a court order that ordered CalState DSS-ASU to be the CI. Yes, the judge dumped it right back into Don's lap. Yeah, Don couldn't cooperate with me in the beginning, but now here was a court order telling him he had to be the CI. So, Don got the ball rolling by finding my maternal brother. He couldn't find my paternal siblings. He then started calling my brother and telling him Gods know what. "Hi, I'm from Social Services and you have a brother you weren't told about. He wants to talk to you. You need to fill out a Waiver of Confidentiality if you want to talk to him." That's probably how it goes. Or something equally as charming and heartwarming. He never returned the messages Don left on his machine. So Don sent a certified letter and my brother phoned. Don gave him the sales pitch. "And if you act now, you'll get this combination potato dicer and birth records denier!" My brother said he was very interested. Now, at this point, you'd think they'd say, "Great, we'll give your brother your phone number!" and they'd be done. And you would be dead wrong. Because the government needs their damnable paperwork. They sent my brother the waiver. He never filled it out. So, guess what? No contact, no information exchanged.
Now, Don is emailing me all the time about this. "Good news! We found your brother! And he said he's very interested in contact!" Great, send me his phone number! Not so fast, pal! We need our WAIVER! Since July (it is now late October as I write this), Don has been sending me these emails telling me how he called my brother again and my brother is mailing out that waiver that week. Of course, I can't dump this all on Don. My brother seems to be playing his own games. But, ya know, wouldn't it be nice to be talking to my own brother myself and finding out exactly what the issue is myself for my own peace of mind? The end result with the CI system is that in a situation such as mine, you really have no way of knowing if it's your sibling torturing you for whatever reason or that the CI handled the thing with chain mail gloves rather than kid gloves. What's more, if at this point you now decide to hell with it and hire a private investigator to find your sibling, the well is poisoned. Your sibling may have already decided against you, thanks to the ham-handed contact by the CI.
You must ask yourself this: Would you entrust a total stranger to call a member of your family and mediate a very sensitive personal issue between you and that person? No, of course you wouldn't. So that's the conclusion you ought to arrive at with CI systems. You have that one chance in the first five minutes of that phone call to make or break that contact and/or reunion. The CI is a total stranger. Imagine you got a call from someone you didn't know who knows more about you than you do at that point, thanks to our charming closed records system. Then this person says "Surprise! You have siblings!" But, also think on this. Why are we being deprived of this emotional first contact? Why are we deprived of that experience just as important in our lives as any other major event? Why does some total stranger get to have that first contact with our siblings? I ask, is this right? And I answer that it is not. It is an obvious intrusion into our personal lives. We lose that experience of being the first to talk to our own siblings forever.
You must also ask yourself: Why we are not trusted to contact our siblings ourselves? Why must a CI be the gatekeeper here, as if we are but small children unable to handle this ourselves? Oh, the right to privacy? Yeah, uh-huh. Then how come around election time I get tons of unwanted phone calls from various jerks and charlatans running for public office? yet, a phone call from one sibling to another is not to be tolerated simply by virtue of their births. As if we are not to be trusted. What must we do? Write on the blackboard, "I will not talk to my own blood kin without permission" 500 times and then go stand in the corner and await the CI? This is an outrage! They act as if we are psychologically unfit to initiate contact ourselves. If this is so, then shame on that same government for continuing the damaging practice of adoption! It cannot be both at once. Adoption cannot be a good thing while at the same time rendering adoptees psychologically "damaged goods" who cannot be trusted to talk to their own siblings without some CI doing hand-holding. The adoption advocates want to promote adoption as that good thing while, at the same time, making very obvious accusations that adoptees wanting to search are stalkers. In a very real sense, we are presumed guilty without chance of being found innocent.
Finally, the CI system is an emotional purgatory where you sit in limbo hoping the CI can convince your siblings to fill out the damnable waiver or consent form. Bear in mind, in California's new CI system, no information can be shared. Your sibling wants to know a bit about you before filling our a form titled "Waiver of Confidentiality" which is what the California CI system requires. The CI cannot tell them anything about you, even if you say to do so. Because the privacy is a weird paradox where it violates "confidentiality" to tell your siblings about you as much as telling you about them. By the way, this also means the CI cannot tell them of a genetic disease they ought to be tested for. Yes, I have the email from CalDSS to prove that. So, let's say your siblings don't want contact with the birth parents. The CI cannot tell them you're not some stalking horse for the birth parents; that you're just a sibling who wants to talk to their sibling. Thus, this system is a self-fulfilling failure by which two things are accomplished. The first thing is all the so-called reformers and feel-gooders get to act like they've done something and also shut us up at the same time. The second thing is when it fails, they can say, "See? No one wants contact. We don't need open records." The truth is, the CI system is an unwarranted intrusion into personal lives by the government. How they can sit there and whine about "privacy" and then shove themselves into an intimate, very sensitive reunion between siblings separated because of that same government's sham of adoption policy is to see the hypocrisy for what it is. The government kept siblings separate and continues to separate them by insisting on CI contact rules. If this were Iran doing this, we'd hear all about how tyrannical such a practice is. Instead, the government expects us to see CI contact as some kind of a gift. But the truth is, it's just one more of the endless humiliations heaped upon adoptees. A humiliation where, like Oliver Twist, we must beseech the government with the pitiful plea of, "Please sir, may I have my siblings?"
Part 2 of Confidentially Yours will be posted in the next day or so. Other essays by Kevan will appear here occasionally.
Kevan Taylor-Perry is a Bastard National and Army veteran. "You can be trusted with a weapon, but not your own identity and siblings".
Saturday, October 27, 2007
NOTE: This is a corrected version of the blog I published last night. Christina is not a high school student (not sure why I thought she was! ) but a college student in Florida. My apologies go her).
College student Christina Cross-Parkhurst, is asking some interesting questions about the new Massachusetts “records access” law. See, deformers and their Beacon Hill hacks tossed an entire generation of the state's adoptees, who made the mistake of being born at the wrong time, into a black hole, denying them access to the birth records, while letting those born at the politically correct times "permission" to own theirs. For a school project, she’s asking why.
The questions that she asks are some of the questions we’ve asked for months to no avail of legislators and the Benedict Bastards of the ABC Committee who took it upon themselves to decide who deserves identity rights and who doesn’t. (Daily Bastardette, Sept. 9, 2007 for bill signing).
I don’t know if Christina intends to take this outside the classroom. It would be fun, though, to send them to Sen. Karen Spilka who gutted the original clean bill; Susan Hicks and the ABC Committee who licked Spilka’s spike heel boots; and Dr. Joyce Pavao, a founder of the ABC Committee. The committee ducked for cover shortly after their abomination passed, and haven’t been seen since. Their names don't even appear on their page. At the recent ASAIK conference at Pitt Dr. Pavao said during a small open mic session that she resigned from ABC when the committee voted to compromise. I did not have the opportunity to follow up on this. If this is true, we would like to see a public statement, prominently posted, from Dr. Pavao disavowing the law and the committee. As a founder of the group that sold the rights of all for favors to some, it would behoove her to set the record straight and explain what happened. Since the entire legislative process was held behind an iron curtain we won’t hold our breath.
Below is Christina’s request for help along with her initial questions as posted on the Open Records in New England Yahoo Group list. She has also posted a poll there, but I don’t think you can get to it unless you belong to the group. If you do belong, please take a minute to respond.
I am doing a project for school. I chose Adoptees having rights for my
topic. I myself, being an Adoptee have questions that if I had the
chance to ask. I will list the questions that I have thought of. It
would be great if you had any of your own and would like to add them.
1. Why do you believe that adoptees do not have the same civil rights
2. What do you intend to do for the people born after 1974, that would
like their original birth certificates.
3. I would just like to know the reasoning why most of you are only
concerned about the birth mothers rights? What about ours?
4. What is the purpose of sealed records; besides for the birth
mothers rights? I think that you would have to have more than just
that to keep us away from our records.
5. Have you ever been in the situation of feeling alone or incomplete
as a person? If not then how can you tell us it isn't our right?
As of this writing, Christina needs 10 more questions. Here are some my questions for Christina to consider for submission. If you have questions you like answered about this Massachusetts Mess, please post them here.
The original bill, S959 was a clean unrestricted bill which restored the right of all Massachusetts adoptees to access their own birth certificates. During the initial hearing for that bill dozens of individuals and organizations testified in favor of it “as written.” Only the National Council of Adoption opposed. The bill was backed by Beacon Hill leadership and considered a “done-deal.” Why was the bill, which later became S63, corrupted and adoptee rights gutted?
Arguments regarding “implied promises” to birthparents were debunked by scholars, judges, birthparents, and activists years ago. Even those who oppose records access admit they are unable to present one document to prove otherwise, yet you chose to legitimate and codify those spurious “promises” and urban myths into law. Why?
If you were a blacklisted adoptee, denied access to your birth records because you were born at the wrong time, how would you feel?
Do adoptees ever grow up?
Do you believe that all persons born in Massachusetts have a right to their own true birth certificates, or only some? Why?
Are you aware that birth certificates are sealed only when an adoption is finalized in court? If a child is relinquished and never adopted, the birth certificate remains unsealed and accessible to anyone.
Are you aware that the names of birthparents often appear in legal ads in newspapers and in court documents given to adoptive parents?
PLEASE HELP CHRISTINA!
Post your questions and comments here. Her deadline is soon.
Monday, October 22, 2007
OLD FRIEND--NEW BLOG
Please check out Baby Love Child, a brand new blog that went up today: Starting in the Middle. The author, Lauren Sabina Kneisly, is a very old and dear friend of mine. She appeared here as a guest blogger last year with "Stem-Cell Veto, Snowflake Kids, and Christian Eugenics" (July 29, 2006). She'll be kicking it up writing cutting edge analysis of AdoptionLand. Here's a sample:
Yes, the personal IS political, (but not universal!) but did that really mean I had to end up neck deep in working on adoption? I mean, the language is completely broken, the power disparities are massive and overwhelming. International child marketing and redistribution is almost too much to wrap one’s brain around. Add in reproductive technologies both emergent and old, and it’s enough to give a Bastard a migraine! (And I haven’t even gotten to why I use the word Bastard yet!) ....
SPEAKING OF LOVE CHILD!
Here's an interesting piece, A Double History of the Supreme's "Love Child" from Beat Research 2, which segues from "Love Child" to the author's teen mother who kept him.
Love Child” is a protest song in the same way “Blue Suede Shoes” was--a warning, or a plea, for someone to back off, in this case Diana Ross’s boyfriend. He’s pressuring her to have sex, and she wants to wait. 1968 was the year that the birth control pill, then on the market for eight years, was compared to the discovery of fire in terms of importance, but the sexual revolution wasn’t yet in full swing, and anyway the Supremes were essentially singing for kids (not a pejorative). More to the point, Diana Ross was singing as a kid--the narrative voice is clearly that of a teenager even if no ages are mentioned--a teenager telling her boyfriend why she won’t have sex with him--she will not get pregnant and continue the cycle of unwed, teenage motherhood.
No, Bastardette did not return from conference hopping with sprog in hand, (heaven forfend!) but she does make a cameo appearance in the November issue of Mother Jones, Did I Steal My Daughter? The Tribulations of Global Adoption, by Elizabeth Larson.
Yet the vast majority of transnational (also called international and intercountry) adoptions remain closed—and it's widely understood that this appeals to some adoptive parents. "It's about entitlement and ownership," says Marley Greiner, the executive chair of the activist adoptee group Bastard Nation. "When you read the adoption boards online, it seems like parents go overseas because they don't want some pesky birth mother or relative showing up."
I thought I'd have some more quotes since the fact checker called me a few weeks ago to verify some "radical quotes" from me. But it's fun to be in MJ, especially since I'm an old Wob and many years ago corresponded with IWW historian/Mother Jones biographer Fred Thompson who was good friends with the real Mother Jones.
Monday, October 15, 2007
At the left is a picture of my panel, "Adoption Access to Records and History Adopted People and the "Right to Know." Fred Greenman, General Counsel, American Adoption Congress; Pam Hasegawa, moderator, Trish Maskew, president of Ethica (not on panel), Bastardette, Elizabeth Sammuels, professor of law, U. of Baltimore and records access legal scholar).
* * * * * *
There are a number of reasons why the original birth certificates of adoptees remain sealed in all but a handful of states. Well-funded adoption industry lobbies such as the National Council for Adoption; powerful tangential lobbies such as the National Right to Life Committee, the Family Research Council, the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, and various feminists who believe adoptee identity rights endanger their own social and political agendas; politically influential adoptive and birth parents; reactionary and back-scratching politicians, and political lethargy. Our right to identity and public records about our birth have no traction in the political landscape, unless they intersect with the high priority issues of abortion and so-called “privacy rights,” (not ours, but other peoples’), and then only negatively. Adoptees are expected to shut up and be grateful for allegedly being made middle class and not tossed in a dumpster or reared in a trailer park. Those who press for records access and information about themselves are blamed for “disappearing adoption privacy rights.” Adoptees (and first and adoptive parents who support them) bite the beneficent hand that feeds them. Adoptees are destroying adoption!
LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND
Ten years ago Bastard Nation was founded on the guiding principle that access to original birth certificates, identity, and history is a natural right, not a privilege doled out by the state. Adopted people want their original birth certificates for many valid reasons, but reasons are immaterial since they are nearly always argued on desire, not the right to possess them and the unredacted information contained in them. We have a right to the facts about our births, origins, and adoptions--adoptions which were imposed and contracted upon us, usually without our knowledge and consent, by the state that then seals our information and refuses to acknowledge our right to that information or that we even existed before our adoptions.
THE FALSE TRIAD
Adoptee rights advocates are bogged down by the concept of “the adoption triad,”: the first parent(s), the adoptive parent(s), and Baby Bumble—the adoptee-- all of whom allegedly have “competing rights” that must be balanced Translation: adoptees loose
Surrender does not equal adoption. Privacy and confidentiality do no equal anonymity-- nor do sealed birth certificates.
Under normal circumstances, competitive rights and their balancing is a problem only when there is a conflict of rights. Since there is no right of anonymity from one’s own offspring and there is a presumed right to own one’s birth certificate, there is nothing that needs balanced—except the minds of the secret keepers. What adoptacrats really want when they toss around “competing rights,” “implied promises,” and “confidentiality” is protection for their commercial misdeeds and their continued control over other people’s personal information. It’s about institutional power.
Records accesss is a social justice issue. The “triad” with its plea for “balanced rights” forces compromise and corrupts the core principle of adoptee rights to records, identity, and autonomy. Without an ethical canon of absolute inclusion and no compromise, the rights of adoptees will continue to be Balkanized, and adoptees will continue to be treated as a separate class undeserving of their own information.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
The ASAIK conference (Association for the Study of Adoption, Kinship, and Identity) is Bastardette's absolutely favorite adoption conference! The event 2 years ago in Tampa was fun (yes academics can be--and do--have fun!) and crucial to my understanding of the warp and woof of adoption politics beyond hum-drum "activism." Literature, art, rhetorical constructions, history, cultural studies, and philosophy give an authentic voice to adoption's actors. They expose the profound problems of identity loss, state-built identity, psychological repression, and otherness--illogics that go far beyond adoption industry manipulation and power politics, and into the very heart of what makes adoption absurd. Daniel Deronda is not far removed from sealed records. "How could you choose my birthright for me?"
Today's first session, "Memoirs, Classic and New," was a bang-up with authors Lorraine Dusky, Jean Strauss, Carol Schaefer and Emily Hipchen discussing their adoption experience, the process of memoir writing, and reading excerpts from their books. BJ Lifton, unfortunately could not make it due to illness.
All of the panelists pointed out that they were writing about a subject that until recently was supposed to be stuffed away in the back closet like an ugly cloth coat and not discussed in good company: the personal adoption experience. Especially if it doesn't conform to the the standards of The Happy Family Child Redistribution Center
Birthmother Dusky remembered that the reaction to her 1979 memoir Birthmark was "how dare she?" Although she was an established journalist, and editor, MSM refused to publicize the book.
Adoptee Jean Strauss, also an established author and script writer, ended up self- publishing her memoir Beneath a Tall Tree after years of being told the topic was too controversial. "20 years ago you were not supposed to think about where you came from." She reflects that adoption loss is a universal loss to which those who have lost loved ones in other ways can connect.
Birthmother Carol Schaefer, believes that books are a journey and "the way to heal is through memory." She, too, was an established writer, but her journey into healing, The Other Mother, published in 2001 (later turned into a film) began as a handwritten journal of memory after being reunited with her son. During early literary networking efforts she was discouraged from finishing the project: the book would never be published, you'll never hear back from an agent; the check will never arrive in the mail.
Adoptee Emily Hipchen also started her memoir, Coming Apart Together: Fragments from an Adoption, as a secret handwritten journal she kept hidden in her office. Like Schaefer, she believes that the handwritten word lets the writer "own" the story without interference from others.
After near proscription, the adoption memoir has boomed over the last few years. Unfortunately, a lot of them are bad. Bastardette has tried to read them so you don't have to. But Dusky, Strauss, Schaefer, and Hipchen's are some of the best adoption memoirists you will ever read. They combine riveting personal narrative with uncompromising arguments against itheft of identity via adoption. I also recommend highly Craig Hickman's stunning memoir, Fumbling Towards Divinity: the Adoption Scriptures about growing up adopted, queer, and black...and so much more. Craig is here and will be on tomorrow's "Men Write Adoption Memoir" panel.
I'll try to write more about ASAIK presentations over the next few days.
NOTE: All of the books mentioned here are available on amazon.com. I attempted to link them and blogger threw a hissy.
Saturday, October 06, 2007
The line-up posted below is outstanding. I am thrilled to be part of a group that includes FauxClaud; BBAS ass-kicker Elizabeth Case, whom I have admired and corresponded with for years; Harlow Monkey's Jae Ran Kim; and fellow Bastard National Mirah Riben. It may be dangerous to put us all in one room. Why, we may sip down too many chocolate martinis and march over to the NCFA office in nearby Alexandria and chain ourselves to their railing.
Besides just hanging out for cocktails we'll be able to interview conference attendees and blog on-site. I wonder what Massachusetts ABC founder Joyce Pavao has to say about the Massachusetts Black List or how the Joint Council justifies sitting on its hands over Masha Allen? (Where IS Masha, by the way?) Inquiring bloggers want to know!
Here is the final blogger roster. You can read more about them here.
Suz Bednarz Writing My Wrongs
Elizabeth Case Beware of BBAS.org
Claudia Corrigan D’Arcy Musings of the Lame
Marley Greiner The Daily Bastardette
Jennifer Hemsley Great Wall China Adoption Nightmare
Jae Ran Kim Harlow's Monkey
David Kruchkow The Adoption Agency Checklist
Margie Perscheid Third Mom
Mirah Riben Family Preservation
Desiree Smolin and Usha Regenchary Smerdon Fleas Biting
Thursday, October 04, 2007
Adoption conferences preach to the choir who then return home to practice their hymns some more. While this will indeed preach to the choir, the conference is billed as a working conference with diverse ideologies and solutions (everybody is supposed to feel "uncomfortable" at least once) providing presenters and attendees the opportunity to help "shape improvements "in adoption practice. As such, traditional presentations will be replaced with (no more than) a 10 minute presentation by each panelist. Discussion will then open up to the "public." At the end of the conference a Town Meeting will discuss ways in which to utilize conference suggestions and strategies for "change." Of course ethical adoption is an oxymoron, but it will be sort of fun to see who and how many squirm.
Our panel has been charged with the following questions to guide our debate:
- How do current laws and practices support or impede adopted persons access to information about themselves?
- What rights should adopted persons have to such information? How should those rights be balanced against the rights of others involved?
- How should access be thought about from an international perspective?
While I think legislation will be a major part of our panel discussion, Bastardette has decided to kick it up with: Kill the Stork: A New Paradigm for Ethics and Adoptee Rights Activism. I'll discuss such bizarre uncomfortble thoughts as:
- the false "triad" creates false power dynamics
- a re-peopled adoption narrative
- rights supercide priviledge
- compromise is unethical
The speakers list is huge and includes some of Bastardette's favorites: Michael Colberg, Bill Cordray (right), Madelyn Freundlich, Trish Maskew, Barbara Raymond, Brenda Romanchak--and some kick-ass bloggers. And some of Bastardette's not-so favorites including a few who are on (or should be on) Pound Puppy's Demons of Adoption nomination list, the winner of which is scheduled to be announced later tonight.
At some point I'll probably publish my presentation here; that is, if I get a chance to write it in between "preparing" for back-to-back conferences (hand-outs, kitty-sitting, laundry, packing, and a haircut.) I already bought a new hoodie for the occasion.
I think I'm supposed to have a graphic which clicks on to the conference site, but don't. So just go here.
Addenda: Bastard Nation is a low-end co-sponsor of the conference. After all, we do stand for ethics! We were informed yesterday that our sponsorship has enabled two adult adoptees, who otherwise could not make it to the conference to speak, to be there. Bastard philanthropy is good! Let out voices be heard!
Stork graphic by Chaz Filious
AN ANTIDOTE FOR ADOPTION POLITICAL BOREDOM SYNDROME: THE ASSOCIATION FOR THE STUDY OF ADOPTION, IDENTITY, AND KINSHIP CONFERENCE
I'll be busy the next couple weeks, but I'll be checking in. I am, dare I admit it? Conference hopping ! Next week I'll head out for Pittsburgh to attend the 2nd conference of the Association for the Study of Adoption, Identity and Kinship-- Encountering New Worlds of Adoption. Two years ago at the first conference at the University of Tampa I presented a paper on the representation of first mothers in film--Where We Came From-- which you can find in the DB November 21, 2005. (Blogger doesn't do its own links very well.) Later it was published in the PACER Newsletter (Post Ado9ption Center for Education & Research).
Speakers and presenters this year include BJ Lifton, Lorraine Dusky, Sandra Patton-Imani, Jill Deans, Emily Hipchen and Bastardette's old friend, Craig Hickman. (I also wrote about this conference on December 15, 2006) Viewing adoption through literature and art gives a whole new perspective and meaning to just how screwed up adoption really is. I mean, one only has to read (or better yet attend) an Albee play to see that.
I am especially interested in Sally Hanslanger (Philosophy and Women's Studies, MIT), "Family, Ancestry, and Self: What is the Moral Significance of Biological Ties?;" Juliette M. Ludeker (English, Purdue University), "From Planned to Miracle: The Use of Metaphor in Adoption Webpages;" Cynthia Ninivaggi (Anthropology, Georgia Court University), "Lessons from Their Silence: Twentieth Century Relinquishment and 'Expert Discourse';" Susan Marie Harrington, (English and Women's Studies, Indiana University/Purdue University--Indianapolis) "Adoption Online: The Creation of Narrative Spaces and Identity;" Miriam Klevan (Human Development and Social Policy, Northwestern University), "Meant to be Ours: The Uses of Fate in the Narratives of Adoptive Parents;".......and of course, Cindy L Baldassi (Law, University of British Columbia), "Constituted by Law: Adoptive Identity in Disclosure Debates."
Bastardette's old friends poet/writer Maryanne Cohen and filmmaker Sheila Ganz are part of Friday's "Evening of Adoption Memoir, Film" session.
If four days of highbrow talk seems exhausting, it's not. It's really quite accessible and non-academics can feel at home.
I don't know if it's too late to register, but you can read more about the conference at their website. If you're in the Pittsburgh area check it out.
After this uplifting event, it's back in the dog trenches. I've been invited to be a member of the Legislative Panel and the Meet the Bloggers panel reception at the Ethics and Accountability conference in Alexandra, VA co-sponsored by Ethica and the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute the day after the ASAIK event ends. I'm writing about that separately.
Good news for people who love adoption radio--and who doesn't around here!
Donna Montalbano has left WSAR-AM, Fall River, and moved over to WARL-AM in Providence with a brand new show: Family Secrets. And the really good news is that it streams so everybody can hear it. Donna sees the new show as a great opportunity to expand listenership and discuss a variety of subjects including adoption and assisted repro. I've been a guest on her WSAR show twice and it was a great experience.
Family Secrets airs noon on Thursday. Go here to listen.
Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Prominent Massachusetts adopteephobe Senator Karen Spilka was featured in the Sept. 29 edition of the Milford Daily News. Spilka, as you may remember, has a real Jones for state identity confiscation. She and her lapdog ABC Committee (or was Spilka THEIR lapdog?) are responsible for gutting the identity rights of ungrateful adult adoptees in the state through her opposition and stonewalling of last year's clean AB 959 and her co-sponsorship of this year's of SB63. which blacklists thousands of adoptees by date of birth. She was also a sponsor of the state's so-called "Baby Safe Haven" law which legalizes newborn anonymous abandonment. Spilka apparently has never met a baby who didn't need to have another state-constructed identity. Ironically, Spilka, a former labor lawyer and "community volunteer" is considered a hero by some. Claudia Bennett, a former colleague on the Senate Committee on Education says, "Karen is someone who fights for the underdog which I think is a great quality." It seems that Massachusetts adoptees whose rights are denied under her jackkboot don't qualify for her largesse.
For more on Spilka and the here go to: