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It's hard to understand how the AP (and MS-NBC, which hosts this story) could have possibly come up with a headline "Mass. Governor Offers Gay Adoption Bill" when the report describes action taken by GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney to allow Catholic Charities to operate its adoption service without violating its religious beliefs. Later, the headline changed to "Mass. governor proposes bill on gay adoption", a slight variation but still one that leaves an impression at odds with the reporting:
Republican Gov. Mitt Romney proposed legislation Wednesday that would allow Catholic Charities to refuse to arrange adoptions for gay couples.
The Protecting Religious Freedom bill would exempt religious groups from a state anti-discrimination law that requires them to consider gay couples when placing children for adoption and foster care.
Catholic Charities, the social services arm of the Boston Archdiocese, has been finding adoptive homes for children for a century but announced recently that it will stop doing so because placing children with gay couples would violate church teachings.
This is just an attempt by Romney to correct an injustice created by the Massachussetts legislature, which required public and private adoption agencies to process adoption requests from couples regardless of orientation. Catholic Charities places many children in stable homes, and has an excellent track record of placing older and special-needs children with loving couples. As a religious organization, it has to adhere to the teachings of the Church, which forbids homosexual relationships. However, CC usually refers gay couples to other adoption agencies as a courtesy.
The Democratic legislature has announced that they will fight Romney's exemption for religious organizations. They want to dictate through legislation how religions should operate their private outreach groups. Not only is this an unconscionable infringement on religious freedom, it also hurts the children that the Massachussetts legislature claims to cherish.
I understand that Massachussetts has agreed to allow gay couples to adopt, and quite frankly I don't see anything wrong with that. A stable home with gay parents beats the heck out of foster homes. However, the government should not dictate the terms of religious outreach -- and forcing a group with such a strong record of sensible and loving adoptions to close its doors rather than violate their religious beliefs benefits no one except short-sighted politcians. Catholic Charities has wonderfully served the Massachussetts community and plenty of other agencies exist to serve those who do not fall within CC's guidelines. (via Michelle Malkin)Sphere It View blog reactions
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