What I Think of Child Adoption

March 9, 2008
By Jary Kim, Delray Beach, FL

“Call in clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, or call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.”

Jane Howard’s quote above describes how each and every one of us needs a family or someone who will love us no matter what happens. Unfortunately, China, Cuba, and countries in Africa are always overwhelmed with the growing number of orphans in its numerous orphanages. In fact, China alone has more than 100,000 orphaned children under the age of 18, due to a law that permits only one birth per family. The second child is usually abandoned by parents at a young age as the parents cannot take care of it without facing heavy fines. The child is then taken to orphanages with poor facilities and unsanitary living. Fortunately, families in America, Europe, and around the world are willing to adopt the children. This is a good idea as the child can grow up in a stable environment, receive better education, and live where female discrimination is limited.

All children should grow up in a pleasant atmosphere inside and outside the home. An orphan’s first years are filled with mistreatment and unhappiness. For instance, Russia’s orphans are bullied, abused, and intimidated, leading to mental health disorders in the future. Inside the home, the new parents should care for the young adoptee with much attention and love so that childhood can be a comfortable experience. Furthermore, the adoptee should grow up in a country where there is a stable and less repressive government.

As Francis Bacon once said, “Knowledge is power”, children should all be given the chance to learn and use their knowledge. But because of the lack of proper equipment and school supplies, orphanages cannot afford an adequate education to most of the children. Because of that, lots of orphans who are not adopted lead troubled lives. For example, uneducated children in Bombay become street beggars, could be taken for child prostitution, and could be employed slaves. If a child is adopted and brought to the U.S, the parents would be immediately providing the child with a solid education, great opportunities, and a hopeful future, as they have more money and resources.

Female discrimination is very strong in countries such as China, Cuba, Russia, and regions of Africa. In many countries, girls are orphaned because the family wishes for a male child. Girls who are not adopted grow up to have a weak voice in their rights and often get low-paying jobs. In China, most of the women work in the factories producing Barbie dolls or clothes in horrible working conditions. In other countries, girls are coerced into prostitution. But countries in Africa that went through a genocide crisis, such as Darfur and Rwanda, girls were stripped completely of their rights, including the rights to their body. Men who were in rebel forces charged through villages, stealing money and raping women, thinking of them as nothing but useless toys. Some girls were younger than ten years old when they were raped. Afterward, lots of the women and girls were brutally murdered. Thankfully, more and more girls are being adopted nowadays and new laws are being enforced. The girls are taken to a place where there is less female discrimination and more opportunities that are offered to girls.

In conclusion, adopting children from countries like China will almost be like saving a kid’s life. Some may argue adopting the children may cause the culture of the child to be lost, but he or she is usually given a choice whether to learn his or her background or not. Those who choose to do keep their heritage can attend local schools that teach the language on weekends and can also visit the country. Although China, Cuba, and other countries might not be too fond of the idea that girls and boys are being taken away from the country, their government cannot really help them that much if they stay. So ultimately, the country must do what is best for its children.

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