Adoption and acquescing to racists

As an aside, Resist Racism has some great (and by great, I mean tragic and horrible) examples of the other side of the interracial adoption issue – the ones where it’s gone horribly wrong. I don’t think their examples contradict my position; the people they’re talking about are clearly treating children as objects instead of as people.

There is one very worrisome quotation from a UK social worker, though:

“Unless you bring me a utopia when everyone is colour blind, then I’m sorry but deep down I think we as a society are nowhere near ready to have successful interracial adoptions, [in the UK]”.

Maybe it is my white privilege talking, but isn’t that the same excuse previously used to limit interracial relationships, gays in the military, gays in public, women in leadership positions, women as president, and minorities as president? Just a quick offhand list of institutional discrimination I’ve personally heard justified by that excuse.

And before we say “it’s for teh childrens”, let us remember that it wasn’t adults that were escorted into newly desegregated schools. That any and all children in that position felt isolated and had a horrible time of it.

But can we say that we should have just continued on with segregation because “we weren’t ready for it”? That argument – even when used to protect children – is inherently bowing to bigotry, and admitting that it’s there… and okay. You see, we also recognize that, say, shoplifting is out there. Or harassment. Or a ton of other socially inappropriate (to downright nasty) behaviors. But those people – well, we call them criminals and don’t worry too horribly much about them.

Yes, we should do everything possible – including mandatory classes – for prospective parents of interracial children. It’s simply good parenting. But that is not the same as giving up on interracial adoptions because of other people’s bigotry.

No, life isn’t fair. Ideally, adults should have to bear the burden of fixing society’s blinders. We should strive to keep that burden on adults who choose to bear it.

But sometimes it just isn’t going to happen otherwise. Without some people – including innocents, including children – suffering because of other people’s bigotry, we will never get to a world where one’s worth is NOT judged by the color (or colour) of one’s skin.

[Note: Edited the last sentence. I had forgotten the “not”.]