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Sickness in Indiana: judge rips foster child from lesbian couple planning to adopt

“There is no justifiable reason for this family to be torn apart and their legal ties jeopardized. The adoption decree keeps Morgan in a stable and loving home where she has done well. It makes no sense to uproot her from her family in hopes that another will be better because the couple can marry.”

— Patricia M. Logue, Senior Counsel in Lambda Legal’s Midwest Regional Office in Chicago

I am so damn tired of homophobes like this judge thinking that this kind of bullsh*t is somehow better for the child. The lesbian couple has had the baby since she was two days old, and now the judge wants to take her away and place her with a heterosexual couple, now that the lesbians want to adopt her. This is an outrage. It should be noted that Indiana has no laws banning gays and lesbians from adopting, so this is a cruel judge’s call. (

Becki Hamilton and Kim Brennan for several years have served as foster parents to a number of Indiana children. In 2004 the lesbian couple was asked by the state to provide a home for an abandoned infant and to consider adopting her. They took the baby home when she was two days old and have provided care for her since then, including naming the child Morgan.

But when the judge supervising the child’s foster care placement realized that the child’s prospective adoptive parents were lesbians, the court ordered the State child welfare agency to find her a home with a heterosexual married couple instead.

The State did not locate such a family for many months and meanwhile the two mothers, who are licensed pre-adoptive foster parents, applied for and were granted an adoption by the Marion Superior Court. The Morgan Juvenile Court then ruled that the adoption was invalid.

Represented by Lambda Legal, Hamilton and Brennan have appealed the order. In papers filed Friday with the Indiana Court of Appeals, Lambda argues that the adoption must be honored.

“Morgan has been a part of this family since she was two days old, and is thriving. The judge’s view that children should only be placed with heterosexual married couples is not the law and would leave her with strangers,” said Patricia M. Logue, Senior Counsel in Lambda Legal’s Midwest Regional Office in Chicago.

UPDATE: As Ms. Julien noted in the comments, Indiana is also the wonderful slice of America where a state legislator attempted an end-run on gays with a womb-control bill (that thankfully was withdrawn) that would have required the following from anyone thinking about artificial insemination:

* “intended parents” must be married to each other.
* an unmarried person could not be an intended parent.
* A doctor couldn’t begin an assisted reproduction technology procedure that may result in a child’s being born until the intended parents of the child have received a certificate of satisfactory completion of an assessment required under the bill.
* Info required from the prospective parents would have included:
— the fertility history of the parents
— education and employment information
— hobbies and personality descriptions
— verification of marital status
— child care plans
— letter of reference
— criminal history checks.
— a description of the “family lifestyle,” including whether there is participation in faith-based or church activities.

Clearly the Hoosiers must not have any issues with crime, poverty, political corruption, environmental concerns and any other critical matters that need tending to if they are focusing on whether gays and lesbians are trying to raise the state’s unwanted children or have some on their own.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding