Sunday, July 26, 2009


There has been criticism in various blog and comments concerning the Philly- ARD march. Adoptees have been taken to task for writing statements not friendly to the Philly march. We have been chastised for not being in attendance. It’s been said that we are not loyal to our fellow brother and sister adoptees.

But the reason is so simple. It’s so basic! YOUR GOAL IS NOT MY GOAL.

Why on earth would I march in any protest when my ideas of an adoptee equal rights bill do not agree with your ideas?!. Do you think that I should support your protest march or other events just because I am an adoptee? Are we going back to the days when all adoptees were supposed “to stick together” if we wanted to “get anything done?” Not on your life.

I will never swell a crowd of adoptees just to get the attention of lawmakers because here’s what will happen. These legislators will look out their windows and see a lot of adopted people carrying signs and shouting slogans. Then these very same legislators will go right back to their desks and write a bill with restrictions. And worst of all, maybe half of the marchers will go back to their various states and accept those very amendments which do not restore equal rights to ALL adoptees. That is why I won’t be in the crowd.

I will march and support events only when I am certain that the entire group is all on the same page as far as restoring equal rights to all adopted men and women. Nothing less is acceptable. Not one single adoptee must be left behind.

Now do you see?

Your goal is not my goal.


Mary Lynn Fuller said...

GREAT blog, Anita! I agree 100% that not one adoptee should be left behind. NEVER will I participate in a rally for legislative action where not ALL adoptees are treated equally. I know that there are many who believe in baby steps. But if they would do research, they would learn that once a bad bill becomes law, it can take many years to change the law and it might never happen. Ohio is a good example and many have spoken out and lobbied in Columbus for change but so far to no avail.

I will always be an advocate for ALL adopted adults to be treated equally with each having access to their OBC, if they so wish. Nothing else is acceptable in my book.

Anonymous said...

I fail to see what ARD was advocating that is any different that "your" goal. The signs, the chants, the literature, the message of the demonstration was "we want our OBCs!" Period!

We were received politely and respectfully by state legislators attending inside the convention center. The orderly and well-discipline march got positive news coverage and encouragement from Philly residents who spoke to us and even walked along with us.

Unknown said...

Interesting, what is your goal? You don't state it.

Our goal is to end discrimination against adopted persons, no exceptions, equal access to birth certs.

We don't "support legislation", our group is about education and lobbying so that when a bill is introduced the legislators have a context in which to respond. We absolutely do not support any type of veto.

So if your goal isn't equal access, is it defined and how are you working to achieve your goal?

Grannie Annie said...

Yes, I did state my goal. Here it is:
...restoring equal rights to all adopted men and women. Nothing less is acceptable. Not one single adoptee must be left behind.


Grannie Annie said...

Here is my goal in more formal language.

All adopted persons, upon reaching the age of majority (18 or 21) and upon written request, may request and receive a copy of their original birth certificate without any restrictions or falsifications on the certificate, in a manner identical to that of all other non-adopted citizens of the state.

Furthermore, if any amendments should be added that put any restrictions on even one adoptee in the state, then I believe the bill
should be pulled - not passed.


Unknown said...

Hate to tell you, that is our goal too and on all our literature.

Someone must have misinformed you.

You did not answer the second part of the question, what practical steps are you taking to achieve that goal?

Anonymous said...

ARD's goal is for unrestricted access to birth records, just as non-adoptees have it. I don't see how your goal is different.

Um, if you are waiting for a group where every member thinks the same, you'll be waiting forever.

Grannie Annie said...

Anonymous, what would your group do if an equal access bill is making its way through your state's legislature. You have been a strong supporter of this bill. And then -- in some committee, your bill gets changed. Now it contains a disclosure veto. A birth parent can file an affidavit of confidentiality, insuring that this adoptee will not receive his/her obc.
The sponsor of your bill tells you that adding this amendment is the only way he/she can get this bill passed. The sponsor tells you that 95% of adoptees in your state will be able to receive their obcs.

Will you continue to support the bill with the amendment?


Grannie Annie said...

Re practical steps:

I will need some time to document all of my practical steps since about 1994 when I became active in adoptee rights. There are A LOT!


Unknown said...

I am sure you have done a lot, I asked what is your plan for now and the future--

So what is BN doing now, because I don't know.

I mean if there is a better, more effective organization planning practical efforts to raise awareness and lobby legislators or court cases , I am very interested.

Again, for the record, the Adoptee Rights Coalition only supports total and complete access, no exceptions, so again how do our goals not jive?

Or is it as I suspect, this has more to do with social ties than the issues.

I have said before and will say again, I would support any BN effort that was for clean bills that didn't involve the personal attacks that seems to be their forte.

As Gershom said, the Adoptee Rights Coalition should never have had to exist. BN should have harnassed our energies and commitment to their program instead of bailing on their commitments and mudslinging.

A very ripe plum was handed to your group in the form of the AFC, unfortunately you all snubbed it, so we had no choice but to do for ourselves.

If your goal is not our goal, than your goal is not open records.

Google adoptee rights, read our position, it is clear, we want one thing. To end discrimination against adopted persons no, ifs, ands or buts, no exceptions.

Anonymous said...

Dear Grannie Annie-

A clean open records bill that is transformed into a piece of sh*t with compromise, veto clauses, redactions, etc. (IE: California's AB 372), I would ASK TO BE KILLED AS I'VE ASKED FOR AB 372 TO BE KILLED IN MY STATE.

Grannie Annie said...

As always, I stated my opinions in my blog. I did take your advice and google your organization. I read your position and I am happy to learn that for many of us, our goals are the same! That's really good.

It is however up to each individual organization to decide what actions it will take to accomplish our goals.

BTW - my blog had absolutly NOTHING to do with "social ties." If you knew me personally, you would know that I'm probably the last person in the world who is worried about social ties, whatever that even means.

Thank you all for commenting.


Baby Love Child said...

The problem is, the rhetoric from the ARD, particularly on the webpage etc sounds like one thing.

But once it's out on the street, there was a not insignificant amount of focus on search and reunion.

While those obviously do relate to adult adoptees and our concerns, they ultimately do not directly relate to the pure open records stance.

Further, when one goes out on the street holding signs about wanting to find one's Mother or Father, then it should come as no surprise when legislators offer us non-sequitors and table scraps like reunion registries (Whether state run, or 'outsourced' to foxes watching the henhouse like Catholic Charities.)

Without that clarity of messaging in practical application- the pure records restoration demand undilluted, whatever one's target audience is, legislators, media, or the general public will ultimately walk away thinking "open records" is about something other than the pure demand.

Which is part of the problem with the ARD, it looks like one thing on paper, quite another in practice.

Would that it were not so.

Which I think might be part of what Grannie Annie might be getting at... ?

Unknown said...

You know what BLC?

You are not a part of the ARD organization, we do not have to answer to you.

We are doing what you are not, you don't have the lowdown on us and you don't know what happened.

I suggest you find some constructive way to channel your energy. If you don't like our organization, you can work within your own to open records. I wish you all the success in the world because that is all I care about open records.

Despite your malicious behavior you know what else, while I would not travel to see you to tear you down, if you were around my corner I would support any effort you took to support the cause of open records.

Because that is what I care about.

We don't discourage reunion btw. The thing is, what you don't know about is our interaction with the leggies, the protest is really for the general public, our political efforts are much more specific.

But again, you don't know, you don't want to know, you want to do your thing, and you are.

Nothing I can do to help you now.

Oh and p.s. did you know we can see every attempt you make to log into our forum?

We can.

Unknown said...

Oh and p.s.

Why is my question still not answered about BN?

What are there plans for the near future, how can people help?

Besides picking on us what is up BN's sleeve, why would it be so secret?

Or is this their plan, lying, spreading misinformation, name calling and mudslinging, because since I have been active in this cause that is ALL I have seen them do.

And you want to talk about wonky financials? I have read BN's 990 and apparently posting insults on the internet is quite expensive...

AProtester said...

I am absolutely uncertain as to why you think ARD's goal is one of compromise. Where on earth did you get that idea? We only want one thing, UNRESTRICTED ACCESS TO OBCs for ALL.
SO, how is this any different from your goal?

Unknown said...

One more thing, this is awful I know BUT

This is not the first time your blog has been all about disinformation. The one about California having a "good bill" in re: AB372 was mistaken.

I am sure you are a good person with a long history of activism, but you need to delve a little more deeply into the subjects you are posting about.

It is not good to spread disinformation like you did with this post. The organizers of ARD are viruently opposed to any sort of compromise regarding access. To suggest otherwise is pretty unforgivable.

I also have to point out, that at least of last year you were on the BN executive committee. That is who you are respresenting. It discredits your organization to present such a confused front.

Anonymous said...

I am unable to find any reference to supporting compromised OBC bills in ARD's literature.
Where did YOU find it?

Joanne Small said...

I read your blog and I want to thank you for articulating your differences with ARD with a single yet provocative phrase, "Your goal is not my goal." And then follow it with a straightforward explanation. Equal rights for all adopted pesosns. Nothing more, nothing less.

Unknown said...

Oh she probably got it from the other leaders of BN.

I should point out, the correct and ethical thing to do when one discovers they are spreading misinformation intending to discredit an orgainzation unintenionally is to -----apologize.

Everyone makes mistakes but to not apologize makes them seem malicious.

Why is BN against adoptees being activists? Interesting question, very interesting indeed.

Unknown said...

Yes, Joanne, too bad the explanation is a lie

Anonymous said...

"Why is BN against adoptees being activists?"

Perhaps they are worried they might be upstaged.

Unknown said...

Or perhaps they are a beard...

Anonymous said...

I don't know if they're a beard or not.
It seems unlikely. Though stranger things have been known.

OTOH I do know that BLC styles herself as a "oppositional researcher", which Encarta defines as someone who does research for damaging information: research done in order to discover damaging or detrimental information about somebody.

It's gutter politics, and particularly vile when it's done in order to skewer people who are on the same side as you are, just in order to maintain your public profile as 'top dog'.

Grannie Annie said...

This blog is my opinion and I stand by it. It accurately describes how I feel about all such events, whether ARD or AAC or EBD or NCFA holds them.

I did go to Google and I did look up your mission statement. Did you forget to read my comment? It is comment # 12 down from the top and in it I tell the world that lo and behold. We do indeed have the same goal. That was my apology.

Yes, I am on the Executive Committee of Bastard Nation and am very proud of it. And no, I won’t discuss any BN plans with you just because you say “I should.” My duties are to the BN membership.

Finally, I have one little tip for you. At your next march, have a good speller check out your signs before you go out on the street. “Whose my Mama?” is incorrect. And wouldn’t you know it; the newspaper used a photo of that very gentleman with his pathetically misspelled sign to use in their article about your march. Worst of all, I watched your video, and was appalled to see the very same guy standing there with his sign. Shouldn’t someone have edited it out before you put it up on You Tube?

I am shutting down any more comments now.

newbieprotester said...

"Honk if you an adoptee" is also incorrect