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Queer adoptions in Florida: Attorney General Bill McCollum decides… not this time around

Following up on my two posts from last week:

Friday Florida’s Attorney General Bill McCollum announced that the state would not be appealing the recent appellate court decision that declared Florida’s gay adoption ban unconstitutional- YET, or shall we say, at least on the basis of this case.

While the Queer community has been popping the champagne corks and acting as if the ban is dead, a few are beginning to take a closer look at McCollum’s actual wording.

It turns out Creative Loafing‘s David Warner has already more or less written the post I had in mind, so rather than reinvent the wheel, I’ll simply point readers across to his post,

McCollum’s last stand? He won’t appeal gay adoption ruling, BUT…

What you might term part 1 of Warner’s punchline?

McCollum’s statement  included this bet-hedging quote: “No doubt someday a more suitable case will give the Supreme Court the opportunity to uphold the constitutionality of this law.”In other words, the law ain’t off the books yet, and if the right case comes along…

A case is pending, Keen reporter Dana Rudolph points out — that of a lesbian, Vanessa Alenier, who was allowed to adopt her infant cousin in January. The Department of Children and Families hasn’t decided whether to drop its appeal.

Read the rest of his piece for punchline part 2, it’s worth it.

As for the Alenier case? These were precisely the “rumblings on the horizon” I referenced in my initial post on the Florida mess.

It should be more than clear at this point, considering the Florida Family Policy Council’s ratfucking antics, the wingnut community is gearing up for the case and feels it’s much more likely to get the result they want next time around.

Furthermore, right on schedule, Queer adoptions are now an important differentiating issue in key political races in Florida. Had McCollum appealed, who’s to say what role the issue would or would not have played in the elctions.

But as always, no matter which way this went kids in the foster system have been used as a political football.

For now, one thing is certain, this ain’t over ’til it’s over.

(Florida specifically, but everwhere more generally) Queers should enjoy the moment, but be gearing up for what’s coming next.

But for this moment, it’s important to step back from the noise and politics to understand what this moment is to the family in question, see Martin Gill and sons celebrate end of gay-adoption battle as McCollum decides not to appeal court decision.

Note the picture of Gill and the boys. It is a rare and sensitive photo in that while the case was ongoing, the boys faces were not splattered all over the media in the course of this long case. Don’t expect any media statements from the boys either.

This has been handled with far more sensitivity towards their privacy rights than many such high profile adoption cases:

Gill said he and his partner have tried to protect the two boys, now six and 10, from the publicity surrounding the legal challenge. But he said “they do know they’re part of an important court case.”

Because they were still in the foster system, the faces of the boys, who were known as NRG and XXG, were never shown in public. Only the backs of their heads were seen when they appeared on television, for example.

Even though the boys have enjoyed certain perks such as being invited to the White House Easter egg roll and their adoptions now will become final, Gill said he still intends to protect their privacy.

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