LGBT? No, You Can’t Adopt!

Obviously, there seems to be a misconception floating around regarding the LGBT community and the adoption of children. If there wasn’t, we wouldn’t be seeing Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signing laws that will allow faith-based adoption agencies to cite religious beliefs as reason to not serve potential adoptive parents. In a phone interview, Snyder stated, “This is about making sure we get the largest number of kids in forever families. The more opportunities and organizations we have that are doing a good job of placing people in loving families, isn’t that better for all of us?”

Last year, more than half of state and federal funds for supporting adoption agencies and foster-care services went to faith-based agencies. The problem is that as soon as someone asks for legal permission to cite religious beliefs to deny someone service, we know that they are most likely talking about discriminating against the LGBT community and since these faith based organizations receive the majority of the funding—we know there will be a lot of discrimination going on.

Why should we punish a child and keep them in an extremely damaging system because of your religion? Shouldn’t we be doing what is in the best interest of the child? I think so. This means getting them out of foster care and into a loving home.

According to the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute, 23,396 youth aged out of the U.S. foster care system in 2012. Without the emotional and financial support necessary to succeed 40% had been homeless or couch surfed, nearly 60% of young men had been convicted of a crime, and only 48% were employed. 75% of women and 33% of men receive government benefits to meet basic needs. 50% of all youth who aged out were involved in substance use and 17% of the females were pregnant.

These numbers are horrid and unacceptable, but they highlight the problem—that we need to get children out of foster care. With that being said, how does refusing to serve potential parents based on religious reasons help these children? It doesn’t. There is a shortage of adoptive parents and many children are falling victim to a system that perpetuates and accepts their failure. A family, whether gay or straight, is better than the foster-care system.

I would argue that gay couples might even be better parents than straight couples. We know that a gay couple can’t “accidentally” have a child. This means that if they want a child, they are going to have to work very hard to adopt one. Not only do they have to defeat the social stigma associated with gay parenting, but they have to endure a lengthy process to adopt a child, which usually takes 3 years on average. According to Lifelong Adoptions, studies have shown the lesbian couples who have children via artificial insemination end up raising well-balanced, well-adjusted kids. It is safe to assume that children adopted by gay and lesbian couples would show the same results.

We live in a time where many children are raised by single parents. Studies have shown these children are more likely to be convicted of a crime, drop out of school, and less likely to become productive members of society. Single-parent studies demonstrate the significance of having two parents in the household and gay couples offer adopted children with two full-time parents. Two good parents are better than one and definitely better than none. A good parent is caring and nurturing, which are characteristics that are present regardless of one’s sexuality or preference of religion.

Finally, you can’t use public funds to impose your religion onto other people. I respect your right to believe what you want, but you cannot force anyone else to agree with you or punish them for not doing so. If you choose to deny service to people based on religious reasons, then be prepared to be sued into oblivion and lose your government funding. People of many different religions or none at all, have contributed money to your organization and you are not allowed to use that public money to discriminate against anyone who does not conform to your religious beliefs.

equal adoption


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Source:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/us-xgr-adoption-agencies-d…/
http://www.freep.com/…/religious-liberty-bills-re…/23846599/
http://ccainstitute.org/index.php…
http://www.lifelongadoptions.com/l…/lgbt-adoption-advantages

Why the “Dred Scott” defense fails

Godless Engineering

Today I read an article by Neil Carter on the Godless In Dixie blog that points out the hilarious failure of a particular argument used by a lot of popular conservatives. This is the “Dred Scott” defense and it’s best exemplified by good ole Mike Huckabee:

What if no one had acted in disobedience to the Dred Scott decision of 1857? What if the entire country had capitulated to judicial tyranny and we just said that because the Supreme Court said in 1857 said that a black person wasn’t fully human—suppose we had accepted that, suppose Abraham Lincoln, our president, had accepted that, would that have been the right course of action?

Well that sounds a bit suspicious… at least it should and it did to Neil. He goes on to explain the specifics of the Dred Scott case:

The SCOTUS fail they keep referring to is the one in…

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Gay Marriage is Legal, But…

In a long-sought and momentous ruling, the Supreme Court has ruled for marriage equality in all 50 states. However, the fight is not over. The right to marry the person you love is only one right. There are many rights that the LGBT community is still denied or does not possess at this time. Here are the 9 things that the LGBT community still cannot do.

Have Workplace Protection

The LGBT community is not protected against workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in the private sector. The proposed bill of Employment Non-Discrimination Act or ENDA, would put an end to this and provide everyone in the country with equal employment rights, regardless of sexual orientation.[1] However, this bill has been proposed in every single session of Congress since 1994 and it has still not passed. In 29 states, there is no state-level protection for sexual orientation. In 33 states, there is no state-level protection for gender identity.[2]

Have Equal Access to Public Accommodations

As of May 15, 2014, twenty-nine states have no laws protecting the LGBT community from being denied basic accommodations.[3] Public accommodation non-discrimination laws protect LGBT people from being unfairly refused service or entry to, or from facing discrimination in, places accessible to the public. Public accommodations laws generally cover anywhere someone is when they are not at home, work, or school, including retail stores, restaurants, parks, hotels, doctors’ offices, and banks.

Have Equal Access to Housing

There are no housing non-discrimination laws covering sexual orientation or gender in 28 states. This can lead to members of the LGBT community being unfairly evicted, denied housing, or refused the ability to rent or buy housing.[4]

Donate Blood

In the 1980s, during the rampant spread of HIV/AIDS, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) instituted a lifetime ban on blood bank donation for men who have sex with men. Even one man-on-man sexual encounter merits the exclusion, based on the mandatory questionnaire intake workers complete for each donor.[5]

Adopt

There is no scientific evidence that supports the ban some states have on same-sex adoption. There are many studies that show that same-sex parents are equally as effective at parenting as their heterosexual counterparts, such as a study by Lifelong Adoptions, which has shown the lesbian couples who have children via artificial insemination end up raising well-balanced, well-adjusted kids.[6] I would argue that gay couples might even be better parents than straight couples. We know that a gay couple can’t “accidentally” have a child. This means that if they want a child, they are going to have to work very hard to adopt one. Not only do they have to defeat the social stigma associated with gay parenting, but they have to endure a lengthy process to adopt a child, which usually takes 3 years on average. It is safe to assume that children adopted by gay and lesbian couples would show the same results. Gay couples offer adopted children with two full-time parents. Two good parents are better than one and definitely better than none. A good parent is caring and nurturing, which are characteristics that are present regardless of one’s sexuality. Also, there are 5 times the number of LGBT parents willing to adopt than there are children in foster care.[7]

Have Hospital Visitation Rights

Homosexual couples receive only a fraction of the benefits enjoyed by heterosexual couples. For example, a majority of the states do not have specific legal pathways that protect same-sex couples’ hospital visitation rights.[8] However, any hospital participating in Medicare and/or Medicaid is required by federal regulations to uphold inclusive visitation practices, because of a 2010 presidential directive issued to the Department of Health and Human Services.[9] Despite that progress, some couples still don’t have their visitation rights protected. There are too many heart-wrenching stories of one loving spouse being barred from the bedside, while the person they vowed to cherish — in sickness and in health — took their final breaths.[10] This denial of rights is exactly what led to the major Supreme Court decision for marriage equality.

Have Access to Adequate Healthcare

For LGBT people that actually have access to health insurance, gaining access to the appropriate care can still pose difficulties. For instance, a transgender individual will not be covered for any procedure or cancer screenings that are inconsistent with the gender marked on the insurance card, such as a pap smear for a transgender man with an intact cervix. One out of five transgendered individuals have been reported being turned down when seeking healthcare.[11]

Have Consensual Sex

Twelve states still ban anal sex by statute.[12] These so-called “sodomy laws” were established with the expressed intention of criminalizing gay sex. These states continue to uphold the law against sodomy, despite the Supreme Court’s 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas that such laws are unconstitutional. In these states, gay people are still being arrested for having consensual sex.

Serve in the Military Equally

Since the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell in 2010, gay and lesbian Americans eager to serve the country but not willing to compromise who they are as individuals can, for the first time ever in our military’s history, identify openly while serving the military. This year, the Obama administration made it known that they would like to change the decades-old policy of disqualifying a potential recruit because they are openly transgender.[13] In the US army, six states (Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma and West Virginia) are refusing to comply with ex Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s order that gay spouses of National Guard members be given the same federal marriage benefits as heterosexual spouses, forcing couples to travel hours round trip to the nearest federal installation. Furthermore, some benefits offered on bases, like support services for relatives of deployed service members, could still be blocked.[14]

It isn’t over yet.

Some have argued that the Supreme Court decision virtually ensures the rights of same-sex marriage partners; therefore this presentation is no longer relevant. Don’t get so complacent and ecstatic about this victory that you forget that the whole reason the Supreme Court needed to rule on this case in the first place is because people wish to actively discriminate against other people. Those people that disagree with the Supreme Court’s decision will not give up that easy. We will have to fight for every right and never give up until all people are equal.


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[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Employment_Non-Discrimination_Act

[2] http://www.lgbtmap.org/equality-maps/non_discrimination_laws

[3] http://hrc-assets.s3-website-us-east-1.amazonaws.com//files/assets/resources/public_accommodations_5-2014.pdf

[4] http://www.lgbtmap.org/equality-maps/non_discrimination_laws

[5] http://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/BloodBloodProducts/QuestionsaboutBlood/ucm108186.htm

[6] http://www.lifelongadoptions.com/lgbt-adoption/lgbt-adoption-facts

[7] http://www.familyequality.org/get_informed/families_for_all/

[8] https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/lgbt/news/2014/04/15/88015/hospital-visitation-and-medical-decision-making-for-same-sex-couples/

[9] https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/presidential-memorandum-hospital-visitation

[10] http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/08/20/713251/nevada-same-sex-couple-denied-hospital-visitation-despite-domestic-partnership/

[11] http://www.cancer-network.org/cancer_information/cancer_and_the_lgbt_community/barriers_to_lgbt_healthcare.php

[12] http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/04/21/12-states-ban-sodomy-a-decade-after-court-ruling/7981025/

[13] http://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-military-may-allow-openly-transgender-personnel-1424739209

[14] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_orientation_and_military_service

Is There Really Science in the Quran?

There are many things that Muslims claim were predicted by the Quran including, but not limited to; the Big Bang, the ongoing expansion of the universe, and the understanding of the atmosphere. Many Muslims claim that this scientific foreknowledge was detailed in the Quran 1,400 years ago, therefore the Quran must be true and Allah is the one, true god.

I will address these three specific claims about the Big Bang, the ongoing expansion of the universe, and the understanding of the atmosphere. For many of these discoveries, it is not the work of a single person, but usually a chain of thoughts and ideas that led to the discovery. The Big Bang and the expansion of the universe were discovered over 1,000 years after the Quran was written. The understanding of the atmosphere began in the 1600s, but this is still a significant amount of time after the Quran was written. None of the people involved in these discoveries were Muslim nor did they accredit the discovery to the scientific foreknowledge of the Quran.

If the Quran contains scientific foreknowledge, why did Muslims wait until science discovered those things to claim that the Quran contains them? If the Quran truly had scientific foreknowledge, it would be able to use that knowledge to predict future discoveries. However, it appears that the Quran can only predict current knowledge and even when it does that it is extremely vague with the ambiguity that it conveys.

Even if the Quran was proven to be the true words of an omnipotent deity that orchestrated the construction of the universe, this argument would still be complete bullshit. The only thing that this argument would prove is that any scientific foreknowledge must be the handiwork of this omnipotent deity, to include works of science fiction that mistakenly predicted the future. It would not prove that the Quran is true anymore than NASA landing on the moon proves “From the Earth to the Moon”, by Jules Verne was true.

Let’s grant for a minute that the Quran accurately predicted the Big Bang, the expansion of the universe, and the understanding of the earth’s atmosphere. Would that mean it must automatically be wholly credible and the inerrant work of the divine? No. The Quran has entirely too many scientific statements that have no scientific basis, some of which can only be described as lies or absurdities.

Some of these absurdities include, but are not limited to; geocentrism, stars being missiles that are shot at devils, ants recognizing humans and speaking to each other, humans transforming into apes, (and my personal favorite) a winged horse with a handsome face that transported Muhammed as far in one night as a camel could have taken him in one week to pray in a temple that had been destroyed 500 years earlier, just before Muhammed’s chest was cut open, his heart removed, and washed in belief before being placed back into his chest.

buraqqq


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Godless Engineer Interviews: John Shuck

Godless Engineering

John Shuck is a pastor that doesn’t believe in God but more importantly he’s still Christian.

Find out how he reconciles this in a new version of this old faith.

You can watch the interview via Secular TV if you want video:

Or you can listen to it on Spreaker:

http://www.spreaker.com/user/godlessengineer/godless-engineer-interviews-john-schuck

Or on Sound Cloud:

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Hawkins residents respond to FFRF with bat-shit insanity

Godless Engineering

Yesterday, Monday 15 June 2015, the residents of Hawkins, Texas met to discuss the FFRF’s letter requesting that they take down their sign and there was a mixed response from the community with more of it being just bat-shit insane.

As reported by RawStory, one citizen said:

“I say come and take it, baby,” one man says. “Draw the line.”

He goes on near the end of the video to say:

I don’t like northern aggression. I never have.

But when somebody comes and tells me what I’m going to do…

They talk about “read the constitution,” TELL THE PRESIDENT TO READ HIS CONSTITUTION.

First of all dude, calm your overalls down ok. Nobody is telling YOU what to do. They are telling the local government what to do. You are not your government.

Another citizen claimed:

We need to stand for Jesus.

Rest assured it will not stop…

View original post 238 more words