So Much I Want To Do

I want to do so many things.  I want to direct you to my other blog and show you all the fiber arts stuff I’ve been up to.  But I haven’t been up to much.  I want to tell you about the reunion I have working in my life, but that is sort of on hold too.  I’d also like to be on a beach with my toes in the sand and a drink in my hand.  This is  the least likely to happen anytime soon.

So I’m going to hit the high points here.  

As some folks are aware, my state, Missouri, has at least 2  birth certificate access bills at some stage in the legislative process.  Not to mention a couple of more bills that pop up here and there that could have some effect on adoptees.  The only bill that is still breathing is far from perfect, and has, at present, one of the craziest contact preference clauses I’ve ever seen, here’s the summary in it entirety, with the contact preference section bolded….

 

SB 53 – This act modifies provisions regarding adoption records. The State Registrar shall develop and, upon a birth parent’s request, distribute both a contact preference and a medical history form to the birth parent. The contact preference form allows a birth parent to list his or her preference for contact by the adoptee. If a contact preference form is filed with the registrar, a medical history form shall also be so filed. Upon receipt of the forms, the State Registrar shall attach such forms to the original birth certificate of the adopted person. 

This act allows for an adopted person, the adopted person’s attorney, or the adopted person’s descendants, if the adopted person is deceased, to obtain a copy of the adopted person’s original birth certificate from the State Registrar upon written application and proof of identification. The adopted person shall be 18 years of age or older and born in Missouri. The adopted person shall also agree in writing to abide by the birth parent’s contact preference, if such preference is included with the adopted person’s original birth certificate. The State Registrar shall also provide a medical history form, if such form was completed by the birth parent.

 

The provisions of the act shall not apply to adoptions instituted or completed prior to August 28, 2009, except that a copy of the medical history form, which has had all identifying information redacted, shall be issued to such adopted person. For adoptions completed prior to August 28, 2009, the state registrar shall release the original birth certificate only if the birth mother is deceased. If the birth mother is not deceased, the state registrar shall, within thirty days of application by the adopted person, contact the birth mother via telephone, personally and confidentially, to obtain the birth mother’s written consent or denial to release the original birth certificate.

 

This act is identical to SCS/SB 1132 (2008) and similar to SB 322 (2003)

 

I was not aware that the telecommunications lobby was so strong to even reach into the area of adoptees rights.  I assume this means that they will call the first parent on the phone and then send out a contact preference formhat’s what I call reaching out and touching someone.  Okaaay….whatever.   

And yes,  this is the same old tired hag of a bill that has been floating around for years.  

At any rate, Paula Benoit is coming to Missouri very soon to lobby legislators very soon.  I’m seeing this as a bright spot.  

If you’re not familiar with her work in Maine, check here….

http://www.adopteecare.com/paula/

Now that’s what I’m talking about.  A good clean bill.  

Paula has offered to keep us that aren’t hooked up with the super secret workings of the inside scene of Missouri Adoptee Rights activism up with the goings on of her visit.  If you’d like to be inclued, just leave a comment here or drop me a line and I’ll get you hooked up.  The more folks that we can get on this the better.  This means everybody.  

And yes, those who know me have already guessed, politics is making for some strange bedfellows here.  But that’s par for the course in Missouri.  Maybe not so much everywhere else.  Just to tease you a bit, what would make an adoptee rights organization who claim to be the top dog (or should I say top bastard dog) in all things adoptee rights partner with an imfamous adoption agency?  Do they want an invitation to camp too?

I don’t know.

But I am mulling it over.

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23 thoughts on “So Much I Want To Do

  1. The “reaching out and touching” part may prove to be impossible. In this day of everchanging cell phone plans/numbers, no hard lines, good luck to the person charged with making that call! Another point in favor of a good clean bill like Maine’s. As Maine goes, so goes the Nation! And Paula Benoit is my heroine!

  2. I didn’t say or imply that they were working in Missouri, Marley. “Maybe not so much everywhere else” would be the give away on that.

    Maybe you should be the one to clarify, you would know more about it than I do.

  3. Oh, you mean CalOpen. We are partners with many groups with CalOpen. Perhaps you don’t understand the concept of “partnering” in legislative campaigns and how that works.

  4. Yes, I do understand partnering with other groups in legislative efforts. I also know this is of particular interest to you and your group. It seems that you have had some concerns in the past about who one group or another have chosen to partner with.

    It was your concern that at times has given me pause to really think about how I feel about groups that I am involved with partnering with other groups. For instance, I ask myself if the group that is seeking our partnership really supports our cause, and what they might have to gain from that partnership. If it seems to me that they are only after the appearance of supporting the cause, without it really effecting their goals or operations, say in the case if an international adoption agency who’s adoptee’s OBCs aren’t even held in the particular state, I might oppose that partnership.

  5. A partnership does not mean anyone agrees with anyone else, except on that issue. If you are so offended by BN’s partership with CalOpen, why not extend your offense to Ethica, Bay Area Birthmothers and PACT?

  6. I never said I was offended, Marley.

    This wasn’t even so much about any group that you might have be associated with as much as why an adoption agency would feel strongly about adoptees of a sort they don’t deal with receiving their OBCs.

    We all know that there are some big problems with the California bill, things that your group would like to see changed. Do you believe that you will continue to receive their support if you are successful?

  7. From BN’s withdrawl statement from the Adoptee Rights Demonstration of New Orleans:

    Records and identity access is about our rights and has no connection with the marketing schemes of adoption agencies. BN has a long-standing, hard-line policy of accepting no support from the adoption industry. Bastard Nation specifically, and the adoptee rights movement in general, cannot and should not be co-opted or used by the adoption industry to promote its own agenda. We disavow all industry involvement in our work. Any entanglement with the adoption industry endangers the integrity and credibility of the adoptee rights movement.

  8. I can’t just let this one slide by. What pray tell, are you talking about? Your blog talks about, “…one of the craziest contact preference clauses I’ve ever seen.” Where is the cp clause? Not in the bill. What is in the bill is a disclosure veto. Why would you call it a cp clause? Do you not understand the difference? This is such a great example of what the deformers consistently try to do. They think that we are all so stupid that we won’t notice that a disclosure veto is not a contact preference clause. Smoke & mirrors to gain support for a bill that should never have been brought forward to begin with. Don’t you think that you are worthy of your own OBC? Don’t you think that you should be treated as all other non-adopted citizens? Why would anyone support anything less. AL, NH & ME have all proven that it can be done. Don’t settle for less and don’t get suckered into pretending that the bill has a contact preference clause in it.

  9. Um, the cp clause is right here….

    “If a contact preference form is filed with the registrar, a medical history form shall also be so filed. Upon receipt of the forms, the State Registrar shall attach such forms to the original birth certificate of the adopted person. ”

    First paragraph, genius.

    Let’s see they call it a contact preference here too..

    “The adopted person shall also agree in writing to abide by the birth parent’s contact preference, if such preference is included with the adopted person’s original birth certificate. The State Registrar shall also provide a medical history form, if such form was completed by the birth parent.”

    Second paragraph, brainiac.

    You do realize that this is the actual wording of the bill, right? If you have a problem with the way the bill is worded, you might want to take it up with the legislator that wrote it. I can hook you up. She has heard from me about that very thing.

    Reading comprehension seems to be a real problem for you. I do not support the bill as written. Any person with a 3rd grade reading level would have easily got that.

    BTW, I’m a rogue player, not a deformer.

  10. “They think that we are all so stupid that we won’t notice that a disclosure veto is not a contact preference clause.”
    Huh? Shouldn’t that be the other way around?
    Oh, never mind.

  11. I see how that is a masked veto. Abide by = submit to.
    Concealed vetoes are unpleasantly familiar to open records proponents in Ontario. Just to say.
    And a preference is a strong liking for one thing over another.

    Though all this reminds me a little of the term “implied privacy”.
    I mean, really, WTF?

    I should think it’s too early in the day to even propose one, but an example of a good tight contact preference clause would be ?
    Disquieted minds would like to know.

  12. Oh, it amounts to what might call a veto, no doubt. But since they are calling it a preference in this case, to avoid confusion, I am using their terminology. I don’t see a reason to get into an argument about terms if we both know we are talking about the same thing.

    Honestly I think “veto” is kind of a bad word for any clauses of this nature. I would much rather use the word restriction, as in the adoptee is restricted from contact. In my mind, these kind of clauses amount to pre-emptive restraining orders. And that opens up all kinds of questions. By using the phrase “contact veto”, I think we are accepting that first mothers have the right to issue what amounts to an ex parte restraining order.

    It’s a matter of terminology, on both my usage (for clarity) and others usage, and probably splitting hairs, but words do mean something.

  13. “By using the phrase “contact veto”, I think we are accepting that first mothers have the right to issue what amounts to an ex parte restraining order.”
    That’s a very good point, Addie. I see what you mean. Give ’em an inch . . .

    On the other hand, it seems to me that a contact preference clause so close in substance to a veto is vulnerable to being amended at the drop of a hat.
    It teeters on the brink, so to speak.

    Is it truly necessary to include either?
    I don’t know. I’m just a dumb Canuck.

  14. Dumb Canucks are some of my favorite people, Kippa. Heck, I’m a uneducated hillbilly.

    And no, I don’t think it is necessary to include either one. I don’t see any real right to privacy existing (and that’s debatable in some folk’s minds, I know, but that’s a different post) and there are already laws in place to deal with stalking.

    I can’t think of any other situation where one adult can legally bar another from contacting them before the fact.

  15. “And no, I don’t think it is necessary to include either one.”
    I totally agree. And I think Nye Bevan would have too 😉

  16. Trying to figure out the ins and outs of the politics (both state and internet/group) and I am woefully uninformed of the histories here. BUT, if anyone (you, me, we) want to end adoptee discrimination and get our original birth certificates, there can be no compromise. EVER. This seems to be a no brainer to me. We are adult citizens (by BIRTH) equal to any other adult citizen. These are OUR birth certificates. They are not our mother’s, father’s, adoptive parents, the states, the doctor’s, the lawyer’s or anyone else’s. They belong to the individual who was born, not the person who gave birth. Period. Keeping the messsage simple and to the point is most effective. In 2009 we should not be playing games and having to “make nice” (sign papers/make promises) for access to OBC’s. What we do with the information on OBC’s and how we handle ourselves after, who we choose to talk to, has nothing to do with our RIGHT to obtain our OBC.

  17. My son, lost to adoption, was born in St. Louis, MO. I am VERY interested in what is happening in Missouri, and would be very willing to offer help or support.

    As you can imagine, my emphasis is a bit different than yours, but I am in favor of the adoptee having unrestricted access to their birth certificate, but I believe that the mothers should have them as well, since we were not allowed them at the time of birth.

    Let me know if there is anything you would like for me to do in either regard. I would be willing to write a letter (in fact, I already have done so) or anything that you believe would be of help.

    I am a BSE Mother, son born in 1967 at the Booth Home for Unwed Mothers in St. Louis.

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