Why I Continue to Lobby by Carolyn Evaine Shaw

What I am fighting for at this point is not for someone to go back in time and change everything for me. That is done. Whether you consider me a victim or a volunteer, it does not matter. I have given up all hope of having a better past. But here is another truth for you: I am compassionate enough to not want anyone else to have to go through the same horrible experiences. I am caring enough to not want anyone else to have to feel “less than”. I want there to not be a need for Bastard Nation (except as a place for us to make our morbid jokes). The way I approach wanting these changes is by educating people every chance I get about how adoptees are treated differently. But I also lobby for legislation that will force people to start thinking about us differently. I do not endorse legislation that helps perpetuate NASTY TRUTH by making it seem as if adoptees might be emotionally imbalanced or inclined to illegal acts – that means any legislation with a contact veto/authorization/preference. I. WILL. NOT.

HB 984 hurts ME by telling people that I might need someone else to decide for me if I should or should not contact my birthmother, whose name I already do not put out in public because I am not stupid and can tell if it is/isn’t a good idea. If you are adopted, HB 984 hurts YOU by telling people that you cannot decide how to handle a family relationship on your own. If it says that ANY adoptee past/present/future needs help making decisions on how to handle family relationships, then it hurts ALL adoptees. If anyone who does not know much about adoption reads that statute and decides that there must be some reason why it is needed – if that is the only information they get about adoptees – then we have failed to help our very own.

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The Examiner has a 4-part interview with Eileen McQuade, president of the American Adoption Congress. Part 3 is dedicated to the AAC’s policy on records access. Eileen talks out of both sides of her mouth: Adoptees never agreed to the sealing of their birth certificates, and no one had the right to forbid them access to the key document that is available to all other citizens. The AAC does not believe that birth parents have the right to veto access to the birth certificate, because they relinquished all parental rights, including the right to control the birth certificate access. The appropriate balance is the one enacted in Oregon, New Hampshire, and Maine – the birthparent can file a contact preference form, to indicate a willingness for contact. and The AAC believes that the decision to compromise must be made at the state level, depending on the assessment of local advocacy groups. I’ve been meaning to write a response to a statement along the same lines that Eileen made in the last issue of the AAC newsletter, The Decree. I still intend to, but this Examiner statement needs to be answered now. I sent off a response to the Examiner, but Continue Reading →


A few minutes ago I posted a long blog, We’ve screwed up your state, now we’re coming to screw up yours–California Adoption Reform Effort: if you don’t like compromise, go away. After it was up for a few minutes the entry seemed too long. I have gone back and divided it into two parts: (1`) The Letter and (2) Comments. I have now posted The Letter first, followed by this. I suggest you go below and read the The Letter First. Zen fascists will control you 100% natural You will jog for the master race And always wear the happy face …California Uber Allies. Jello Biafra, Dead Kennedys For the past few weeks we’ve been watching the formation of a new “adoption reform” organization in California: California Adoption Reform Effort (CARE). CARE consists of a few Californians, lead by adoptee author/filmmaker Jean Strauss who lives in Washington State and Stephanie Williams, a pricey lobbyist formerly with the Cal Trucking Association. It’s advisory committee is cattle car Who’s Who of mostly deformers, industry hacks, and out-of-staters. According to CARE’s webpage, the organization is “dedicated to providing adult adopted citizens access to a non-certified copy of their original record of birth.” Unfortunately, Continue Reading →