I’ve been reading a book by my old friend Gary Beuschel, “Papa and Daddy and Babies in Alaska.” Gary and his partner, who both live in San Francisco, have two daughters - born via surrogacy. I’m only halfway through, but it is a difficult book to put down.
The babies went through a period in NICU, and there are a lot of emotional ups and downs throughout the story. This isn’t meant to be proper review; I’ll write a full review later.
I just mention Gary’s book because it is an inspiring story, and is especially timely, now that the intellectual thugs at Families First Foundation are seeking to ban gay and straight unmarried couples from adopting, or to serve as foster parents.
Over the years I have known a lot of people who have related many horror stories about their experiences as foster children. All of the foster parents have, of course, been straight. Most foster parents are decent people, it should be noted, though there never enough of them to go around.
And I have known gay couples who have had children, usually from a previous relationship. I have only seen children who were loved and cherished.
I’ve been thinking about those children now, as I read “Papa and Daddy and Babies in Alaska.” I’m reading about two people who love these two little girls, and I think about the guy in Fayetteville who picked up a two-month old baby and smashed her into the wall to make her stop crying.
Making a child-sized dent in the wall, he covered it up with a dragon poster.
And the mother? Well, this charming example of humanity at its finest is accused of giving the same baby whiskey and Coke in order to make it stop crying.
Just four years ago, the “enlightened” voters of Arkansas decided that marriage should be defined as only between one man and one woman. Yet according to a recent UA poll, over 65 percent of Arkansans would be in favor of allowing a gay person to adopt a child.
I think that maybe - just maybe - in 2008 we can put some of that rancid old-time bigotry behind us, and take a bold step forward.
On the Air with Coralie Koonce
On Monday, March 3 (7pm) Coralie Koonce, author of "Models, Myths and Muddles," will appear as a guest on my show (Channel 18 - COX Cable, Fayetteville).
Koonce's book asks the question, "Can we survive stone-age thinking?" As the human race encounters a vast array of problems - ranging all the way from global warming to oil addiction and a host of other problems in between - Koonce makes the observation that all too many of our responses are knee-jerk quick fixes, resulting from a poor approach to thinking about the problems.
Koonce says, "We seem to be moving backward just when we need to take a giant step forward."
Koonce, who holds a Master's degree in Comparative Literature, is a former writer for Grapevine, and has also written a science fiction novel, "The Youtopia Game."
Show dates and times:
March 3 - 7pm
March 4 - noon
March 8 - 6pm