Many comments seemed to miss the point. One said:
I'm extremely curious as to why you think this as devalues fatherhood. You really didn't explain that issue very well.A theme of this blog is that the family court devalues fathers to be just support money payers, and maybe be awarded visitation privileges, contingent on good behavior. Throughout history, fathers have been much more than that. The father has been the head of household, with the responsibility to lead, support, teach, discipline, build character, etc.
But the typical dad in family court getw two weekends a month visitation, and no real opportunity to direct the upbringing of his child. He is a visitor. Maybe he is a swim coach or bicycle fixer or a friend, and that is all. This is wrong. Kids need moms and dads, and get something different from each.
Now a JC Penney Fathers Day ad says a father can be like a coach or a friend, and one of my gay commenters says that it is inspiring because he wants to have a biological child someday. If that ever happens, I hope that he is inspired to be more than a coach or a friend. Kids need more than that.
While courts are denying the rights and responsibilities of fathers, they are also aggressively pushing doctrines that are contrary to kids having a mom and a dad. Here are two examples from the last week.
The federal appeals court ruled that Calif. Prop. 8 is unconstitutional because California voters had no rational purpose in voting for it, so California same-sex couples and only California same-sex couples are entitled to marriage licenses. The decision is not about any rights that gays have or don't have, except that the idea is to force others to respect their relationships.
The New Mexico supreme court ruled that a Wedding Photographer May Be Required (on Pain of Legal Liability) to Photograph Same-Sex Commitment Ceremonies. It sure seems to me that a private photographer should be able to photograph anyone she wants. There are plenty of other wedding photographers.
If gays were arguing for freedom to do what they want, then I would have no argument. But these cases are all about gays forcing others to respect their lifestyles. I believe that we have rights to form our own opinions. Some commenters have ad hominem attacks at anyone who disagrees.
Getting back to the JCP ad, it seems to portray an ideal father as a gay man who gets in a relationship with another gay man, adopts a couple of overseas babies, and aspires to be swim coach and friend to the kids.
One reader comments:
I can literally name 7 gay couples that I know personally who have adopted/are trying to adopt or who are using a surrogate/have used one. These are wealthy, upstanding citizens and wonderful parents who deserve all the same recognition and respect as any heterosexual father.There are also lesbian couples who have used artificial insemination from sperm donors or who have sued their ex-husbands for sole custody of their kids. Maybe some of them will be featured in the next JCP ad.
That's part of why many adoption agencies (such as the Independent Adoption Center, which caters to the LGBT community) choose to do open adoptions,I am glad someone respects the importance of biological parents. Some commenters seemed to deny that there was any difference between biological and adoptive parents. I am not against adoption, but one said, "Being a parent has nothing to do with where you got your child." I cannot agree with that. My being a parent had a lot to do with where I got the child.