How Can The Church Justify It?
By Rohan McEnor.
The injustice of adoption is stark no matter which philosophical standpoint you might take.
From a purely atheistic utilitarian standpoint, adoption is morally wrong because the joy experienced
by one group of people (adoptive parents) is a direct result of the misery inflicted on another group (relinquishing parents).
Equally the `joy' of raising someone else's flesh and blood is often a temporary euphoria, erased once the child hits their
bastard moment. Equally the `joy' can be argued as being a form of self illusion - a very inadequate panacea for the tragedy
of infertility. From a utilitarian viewpoint the temporary and inadequate tranquilizing of that tragedy cannot be justified
by the imposition of a lifetime of tragedy on another.
From a scientific standpoint, adoption is morally wrong because it perpetrates mental sickness on
all involved, through enforced delusion. All involved in adoption must play a pretend game: pretend that this is your child,
pretend that these are your parents, pretend that your child is dead.
If a person voluntarily lived in such a delusionary world they would be diagnosed as schizophrenic.
Yet society, and adoption practitioners in particular, expect all involved to take up such a schizophrenic position without
ever questioning it. They then compound the problem with further schizophrenic requirements: pretend that such schizophrenia
is normal and should any within the triangle have a desire for reality, they are marked as mentally weak!
However it is ironic that adoption is most obviously immoral if one takes a Biblical standpoint: ironic
because so many adoption agencies are church-based and claim that they do an altruistic service for the community through
Surely at least the Anglicare Adoption Agency must have found itself in a theological dilemma when
the Sydney Anglican Diocese argued most strongly in February 1998 that the act of procreation through coitus was enacted by
God as one of the bonding mechanisms between parent and child. The joy of sex (as the famous book title called it) and the
joy of male/female union through sexual intercourse and (hopefully) orgasmic ecstasy, actually bonds the parent to the emerging
child. This, according to the Anglican Synod, was one of God's purposes for sex and the Synod argued that removing any child
to non-procreative carers breaks this very important, God-ordained bond, particularly if the original parents are kept secret.
Indeed, from the creationist standpoint (that God had a reason for everything), since a child cannot be naturally conceived
without orgasm by the father of the child, it would seem that God had a very definite bonding intent through his creation
Equally from a Biblical standpoint one can hold adoption up to the light of scrutiny under the ten
commandments and argue a case that adoption violates every single one of them, as follows:
- Thou shalt have no other gods before me. For an adoption to proceed adoptive parents must place the
God of parenthood before the God of the Universe.
- Thou shalt not make idols. Adoptive parents must make an idol out of the child, while adoption practitioners
must make an idol out of their careers and convince relinquishers to make an idol out of their mythical carefree childless
- Thou shalt not use the Lord's name blasphemously. Every church institution which uses the authority
of scripture or the coercion of their ecumenical system to contrive excuses for the practice of removing children from perfectly
good natural parents, blasphemes the name of their God. Any church entity which does not do everything in its power to keep
natural children with natural parents under the auspice of Godly family, is an abomination according to their own scriptures.
If church institutions cannot see the centrality of biologically intact families to the nature of the God of the Bible, then
they should close their doors and go into something more honest like real estate or used car sales.
- Keep the Sabbath rest. For a relinquishing parent there will never again be Sabbath rest.
- Honour parents. Adoption shows absolutely no honour or care for mothers and fathers - that is, true
mothers and fathers - only pretend honour and care for pretend mothers and fathers. In fact adoption shows complete disregard
for actual parents in preference for those who are merely prospective replacement parents.
- Do not murder. Murder? Well in my case `Rebecca' was killed in order for someone else to have their
Every relinquishing mother is murdered so that she can cope with her loss through the manifestation
of the false self. Every grandparent's first grandchild is murdered and given to someone else in secret. There is no end to
- Do not commit adultery. If it is adulterous for a man to move into a family and usurp the position
of the husband, and if it is adulterous for a woman to disrupt a family in order to usurp the position of the wife, what is
less adulterous about the enforced transfer of the child out of the natural biologically related family, into a non-related
family, usurping the position of true biological relationships? Equally that non-biologically related child can often look
forward to the confusion of being usurped by future natural born surprise packets! What sort of parental adultery must the
adoptive parents suppress in order to claim that biologically alien child as their own?
The self-righteous in the ecumenical community may lack compassion towards single mothers and so regard
relinquishment as an unmarried mother's `just desserts'. Such an attitude hardly justifies the church sector's dereliction
of duty to care.
Jesus exemplary reaction to the woman caught in the act of adultery and his attitude to the pharisees
in that famous exchange, surely must lead us to expect that the Christian response to the `girl in trouble' would not include
such harsh judgement as the enforced removal of her child to strangers.
- Thou shalt not steal - need one even expand on this commandment in the context of adoption?
- Thou shalt not lie - ditto commandment eight. For the most part this article makes a moral case against
legal adoptions - that is adoptions that were enacted without any law, by-law, regulation or welfare work practice being violated.
However, the reality of recent history seems to be telling us that an adoption cannot be enacted without some sort of lie,
even if it is merely the sin of omission - to fail to tell a prospective relinquishing mother her rights and alternatives.
Adoptions procured via any deliberate or accidental flouting of law, by-law, regulation or recommended welfare work practice,
are immoral purely and simply because they were against the rule of law. Even if you might believe that it was a bad law,
if you break it, you are still liable before the courts.
- Thou shalt not covet... The tenth commandment is interesting. It instructs us to not be envious of
other people's wives, houses, oxen, slaves, donkeys, land and other goods. Coveting other people's children isn't mentioned.
I guess God just figured that it goes without saying.
The coveting of other people's children could be likened to paedophilia without the physical penetration.
Emotional and psychological penetration of the adopted child of course, is inevitable. Physical penetration is often just
the unfortunate bonus for the adoptee who views their utter compliance as the purchase price for a home to live in and a set
of parents to call mum and dad, no matter how dissimilar they may be and no matter what they may be like.
I must say that I personally have been most fortunate in that the adoptive parents of my daughter
seem like very nice people.
However I have lived with that assurance for a mere 12 months.
I lived without that assurance for 18 years.
And I acknowledge that many searching parents are not so fortunate.
The tenth commandment is the perfect place to finish, since all adoption is a result of covetousness.
Society must stop teaching infertile couples to covet other people's children. It is not healthy.
Yes, infertility is a tragedy - but it also an immense opportunity. Not for adoption, but for service,
which surely must be the bedrock of all morality.
I submit that the practice of adoption cannot be justified on any moral grounds, be they humanistic,
biblical or legal and I would be more than interested to debate the case with the so-called adoption professionals of this