Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Texas House- No Foster Kids for Gays

The Texas House passed a childcare reform bill today that would bring sweeping changes to the state's foster care program. Sounds like a good plan and all, except that Rep. Robert Talton through in a little Ammendment that would prevent gay, bisexual, and lesbian Texans to be foster care parents.

Honestly, I haven't this mad/upset about an issue in a very long while. First of all, Talton added this little ammendment to the bill after the bill was introduced because he knew very well this type of thing would not pass on its own. In fact, the ammendment has been introduced as an independent bill several times, and it has been voted down several times. Talton managed to get good Republican support because the main part of the bill was so important. This is politics at its very worst.

A couple of key points of this bill. First, it allows the state to conduct a "reasonable investigation" to decide if a person is actually gay. What exactly is a reasonable investigation? Currently, estimates put an additional $8 million per year tab on the state to conduct such absurd investigations. I'd venture to say that this money would be coming out of the operating expenses of other investigations to determine whether or not foster parents are actually doing a good job.

Second, this bill would remove foster kids in current homes from any home where there is a gay person. We are talking about current kids here, taken away from stable, happy homes just because someone there is gay. Estimates here say 1,200 kids would be left without homes as a result of this. This from a state that already has a big problem finding enough foster parents for kids.

Last, the bill would include all foster homes, even those where there is a familial relationship, no matter how close. This means if something happened to my parents, my 9 year old sister would have to go with strangers, rather than staying with a brother that loves her and wants nothing but the best for her. For people that claim to be pro-family, this really looks more like ripping families apart to me.

Make no mistake, this is about rights. The anti gay-marriage crowd has been claiming all along that a vote against gay marriage wouldn't affect the rights of gay people, but this bill very much does. Under this bill, gays would lose the right to be foster parents, and I don't think it is too much of a jump to assume adoption may be next. Heck, why don't we have CPS take kids away from all gays. I mean, if they can't be good enough to be foster parents, they certainly aren't good enough to raise kids at all.

My Rep, Martha Wong, thankfully broke party lines to vote against this bill. Thank you Martha. Hears hoping the Senate dumps this trash of an ammendment when they vote on the final bill.

More on how the votes fell and more discussion at PinkDome. There are lots of others out there up in arms about this.

What a terrible political ploy. If this is so important and what the state wants, why tack it on to another bill? I hope the Senate comes to their senses on this one. I'll be doing whatever I can to get this tossed out. Man I am mad.

3 Comments:

At 21/4/05 6:51 AM, Blogger alaskanbir025 said...

I do not agree with the standing that Texas has taken on this issue. There are far too many children in this country alone that do not have homes to call their own. Proven scientific research has shown that a child that grows up in a familie with same sex parents, DO NOT turn out gay or anything of the sort, in fact their lives are just the same as an child that would grow up in a heterosexual home. And if the absence of a father figure is the question, then why are single parent adoptions okay? Are we soon going to stop multi-racial adoption, can a heterosexual white couple not be aloud to adopt a small black child because of the color of his skin. The whole issue is about modern segregation dressed up in politics.

 
At 22/4/05 6:29 AM, Blogger Brett said...

Hey, Brady. Dirty politics, indeed. This is infuriating.

I feel such uneasiness over the state of our nation's politics right now - Sometimes I fear there are dark days ahead that we wouldn't have thought possible after the last several decades of progress.

Any chance this bill can be reversed?

 
At 22/4/05 7:21 AM, Blogger Brady said...

Hey Brett,

The state Senate hasn't voted on this yet, so they will need to. So, their is still hope. Hopefully they will come to their senses and drop the gay ammendment off of the bill. After that, this is obviously unconstitutional and there is not public support or even legislative support for the ammendment on it's own, so hopefully the courts could do as they did in OK and strike it.

 

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