Let's get a little bit political for a while. The general election is only two days away, and last night saw an uproar over what I can only describe as blatant censorship of perfectly valid comments on Fine Gael's Facebook page. Not all of the questions and comments were valid and rational, I might add. There were a lot of abusive, derogatory comments, which were quite rightly removed.
However, some of the comments and issues raised on the page were promptly deleted and the users having posted them found themselves blocked from the page. And what was the issue Fine Gael was so desperate to sweep under the carpet and ignore? The Civil Partnership Bill. While it was passed last summer and is expected to take effect this summer, bringing the civil partnership few steps closer in equality to marriage, it still fails the same sex couples in relation to children. This is what most people posting comments were concerned about. They simply wanted to know what, if anything, Fine Gael was going to do to amend the Bill to include the possibility for people in a civil partnership to adopt children. Fine Gael's reluctance to tackle the subject has turned against them, big time.
What Fine Gael seems to be forgetting, they're not offending only people in same sex relationships. They're effectively alienating the friends and family of people in same sex relationships. Hands up, who has a friend or a family member who is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender? I'm seeing a virtual sea of hands, I really hope so anyway. The viewing of marriage as being only between men and women is antiquated and rigid. The viewing of a family unit consisting of a man and a woman and their biological children is just as old-fashioned. I whole-heartedly support same sex couples' right to adopt children, and get very very annoyed when face with the "but it's not a traditional family unit" or "they'll get bullied" or the more ridiculous comments like "they'll grow up gay". Because gay parents raise only gay children, just as straight parents only raise straight children. Oh, wait... Yeah.
Tell me, which is better for the child: to be born to a mother who doesn't want the child or doesn't have the resources to provide adequate care for the child; or to be adopted into a family who wants nothing more than love the child, provide a stable family and a loving home for the child? It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that one out. And if the family happens to consist of two men of two women or maybe two purple aliens, it really shouldn't make any difference.
People entering the process of adopting a child are in for over a year of scrutiny, courses, check-ups and psychological interviews and appraisals. They'll have people asking them the most intimate of questions, checking their finances and generally making sure and then making sure again that they're fit and capable to be trusted with a child in their care. This is a lot more than an average straight, married couple goes through when deciding to have children. Or a straight, married couple unable to conceive a child in the traditional manner.
The point I'm making is that being a fit parent has absolutely nothing to do with your sexual orientation. The only thing that matters is the fact that you're willing to take on the enormous responsibility of caring for and raising a small human into an adult. In my opinion, anyone willing to undergo the arduous and often frustratingly slow process of adoption is far more fit to be a parent than some, who are still in the eyes of this society regarded as a traditional family unit even if the family unit is riddled with substance abuse, emotional instability or any other problems. Just because they're straight and married. I'm using extreme examples here and by no means am implying that aforementioned problems are more prevalent in straight than gay relationships, I really haven't a clue. I'm only saying your sexual orientation shouldn't matter, only your capability to care for a child. For the rest of your life.
It's time for a change, and Fine Gael is clearly not the way to go.