More important than tea parties

Louisiana state representative Jonathan Perry, professional asshat

Louisiana state representative Jonathan Perry, professional asshat

State representative Jonathan Perry (R-Abbeville), is sponsoring a bill that insists children’s birth certificates can only include the names of married parents or single individuals. It is targeted directly at GLBT couples, who obviously can’t marry in the great state of Louisiana.

Not only is the legislation mean-spirited and homophobic, but it’s also an endangerment to kids. For example: if a kid and one of his GLBT moms were in an accident, the other GLBT mom would have to go through a fair chunk of legal maneuvering to ensure visitation and other rights to care for the child. And that’s just one of many unpleasant scenarios.

Asked about this, Perry said he really doesn’t care.

If you’re in Louisiana, do us all a favor: visit the Forum for Equality website now, and contact your legislator before the bill (HB 60) comes up for debate tomorrow morning.

I love being a New Orleanian, and I love Louisiana–mostly–but crap like this make me want to break out the flannel and head to Vermont. I just don’t understand where it comes from. I can only assume that Perry needs a distraction to take his mind off the fact that his party is dead.

UPDATE: For more on the perils of gay parenting (in Louisiana and elsewhere), check out “The Gay Parent Trap” in this week’s Gambit Weekly, penned by the always-charming David Winkler-Schmit, who happens to be an adoptive parent himself. Good stuff. Not necessarily encouraging or uplifting or even optimistic, but good stuff.

2 Comments so far

  1. gentillygirl on May 12th, 2009 @ 2:53 am

    Asshat? Darlin’ he’s a fuckmook, and there are punishments for that. (like tar & feathering and a one-way trip to Tejas.


  2. Laureen Lentz (no_laureen) on May 12th, 2009 @ 6:24 pm

    In my Moot Court class this year, we covered a case based on this very topic. It is disturbing, Richard, I agree, that some legislators are using the adoption issue in an attempt to put the skids on the gay-marriage movement. I was really glad we had a such a great case to work on in our class. I had to do my orals on the State’s side, and it was hard to create a solid arguement from the State’s standpoint. But, I was very relieved that I was assigned the Plaintiff’s side for my brief on behalf of the G/L parents. I learned so much about this hot topic.

    First, there is no documented research that shows children raised in G/L homes have any different outcomes than those raised in heterosexual homes. Second, many of these states with such legislation do permit single gays to adopt but NOT same-sex couples. This contradiction makes absolutely no sense except to show that such efforts are aimed at discriminating against marriage between same-sex gay couples. It’s the kids who are the most at risk with this f’d up strategy coming from the far-right wingers’ fueled by their fear of same-sex marriage.

    Good post! I find it embarrassing to live in the states who are attempting to pass this type of short-sighted, anti-family legislation.

    This particular legislative effort obviously comes as a response to a recent court order which dictated that Louisiana must issue birth certificates updated to reflect the adoptive parents’ information, regardless of their sexual orientation. That case is found here:
    http://www.lambdalegal.org/our-work/in-court/cases/adar-v-smith.html.

    There is hope that things continue to go in the left direction regarding this issue. Discrimination regarding sexual orientation is the core issue and homosexuals are not a protected class under the Equal Protection Clause of 14th Amendment. However, the significance of the Iowa Supreme Court ruling this past week recognizing same-sex marriage is important because not only did the court rule in favor of same-sex marriage unanimously, but the court’s opinion mentions that same-sex legislation deserves "strict scrutiny" regarding its existence as purely discriminatory regarding sexual orientation. This is a big breakthrough.

    Camille Taylor, lead counsel on the case, Varnum v. Brien, explains it nicely here:
    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=103848870



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