August 20, 2010

Scott Simon and "Meant for Each Other" on NPR

Scott Simon, author of Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other was interviewed on NPR this morning.

I was disappointed, first by the interview itself, which was quite dismissive of the importance of racial, ethnic and genetic inheritance.  It also bothers me that someone who works in the media and has very young children has become a spokesperson for adoption, although the story he tells is a very personal one.

I was frustrated by Simon's acceptance of the status quo for his children's mothers, too.  If he's a journalist writing about adoption, he has to be aware of the work that Korean adoptees and many otthers are doing in Korea in support of unmarried Korean mothers and needed changes to adoption laws.

Anyhow, go read, and if you find my comments appropriate, please "recommend" them.  And please leave your own and let me know here so I can do the same.  Here's what I said:
I'm the adoptive mother of two young adults, both of whom are Korean. I understand the love that Scott Simon feels for his children, as I have that same, visceral love for my kids.
Expressing love and rationalizing differences are the easy part of the intercountry adoption story. Adoptive parents must also speak on behalf of the marginalized women who gave birth to our children and see no other future for themselves or their children than permanent separation. We must speak loudly against the traffickers who take advantage of this, as well as adoption agencies who rationalize the "fudging" of adoptee histories and adoption records. We must also work in support of adoptee access to their original birth certificates, a right that has been denied them.
What is downplayed in this story is exactly what I know are intrinsic and deeply personal facets of the identities my children have defined for themselves: their race, ethnicity and genetic inheritance. It’s my job as an adoptive parent to make sure this fact doesn’t get lost in the feel-good adoption stories that abound.

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