June 8, 2012
Last Will & Testament of an Adopted Person
(Thank you, Brian Stanton, for filming this moving satire...it touches the heart
of so many adoptees and their families.)
I wondered why this piece struck at my heart so much and decided to look up the word "amend". As Brian points out, when a person is adopted, their original (factual) "Certificate of Live Birth" is "sealed" and a new, "amended" birth certificate is issued, often with adoptees given new names and "intended" parents listed as those who actually gave birth. Why is it legal for a government document to be falsified (amended)? Parents who never gave birth to that child are listed. Parents who did give birth are erased. Why? To satisfy the needs of the new parents to be "legal"? Then why not issue a more truthful document such as a "Certificate of Adoption" and leave the birth document intact?
It seems as if adoptees are only deemed acceptable in society if our names, parentage, and histories are erased and falsified in order to fulfill a new role ~ a violation of our very personhood. Look at this definition of "to amend."
"amend" - to make better; improve; to remove the faults of; correct.
So our very identity (through our birth certificate) must be "made better", "improved", "removed faults", and "corrected" in order to exist? No wonder we struggle with self-esteem issues and feelings of worth.
What is so wrong with our original identity, heritage, and history that it has be completely erased, sealed, and "amended" on government documents? It seems as if we are forced to live as what we were not born to be, in order to fulfill a role in new family ~ and then we are deemed "ungrateful" or "angry" when we question the very system that erased and created for us a falsified (amended) birth certificate. The only other time in American history where humans were exchanged for money, and their government documents "amended" and held from them, was in the era of American slavery.
I completely agree with Brian ~ if adoptee's God-given identities (who we were born as) had to be "amended" in order for us to exist in American society, it is only right to release those records "sealed" from the very persons they pertain to and allow us to live as whole individuals. How many adoptees have died without knowing? Who knows, but we do know it is far too many.
Six states have passed legislation (supported by The Child Welfare League of America) restoring the unconditional right of adult adoptees to obtain their original birth certificates. America, please end this unethical era of American history and restore our civil rights, our personhood, and our dignity.