Senate Bill 68 is dead this session, according to this CJ story. The bill, known as “The Child Welfare Adoption Act,” was shepherded by state Sen. Gary Tapp and would’ve prohibited unmarried, cohabiting couples (a euphemism for gays and lesbians) from adopting or fostering children in Kentucky.
Here’s a funny quote from David Edmunds, a Family Foundation “policy analyst,” in the CJ story:
I really believed in my heart of hearts that children would be protected and placed in stable homes.
Funny thing is, the bill would leave more kids languishing in foster care, cost the state more than $5 million during its first year just to keep up daily operations, and interfere with the civil and constitutional rights of birth parents across the commonwealth.
It’s also the subject of my cover story, which hit stands today. Here’s a snippet:
The national mood is changing in favor of gay adoptions, according to a 2006 study by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. In 1999, only 38 percent of Americans supported it; as of 2006, that figure was up to 46 percent. (Importantly, over the same period, those opposed dropped from 57 to 48 percent.) The same study indicated that there are more Americans who support gay adoptions than gay marriage.
Not surprisingly, considerably more people between the ages of 18 and 29 support gay adoptions than any other demographic, according to research conducted by the Pew Center; second is the 30-49 set.
These also happen to be the two demographics most coveted by mid-sized cities trying to grow their economic base. Here, almost two-thirds of the city’s revenue comes from occupational taxes, which means that in order for the city to pay its bills, the people must be employed; in order for the city to really prosper, then, a chunk of those jobs should be good, high-paying ones. And those good, high-paying jobs? They’re going to young, educated workers — the same people who tend to hold more progressive social views — who are migrating toward the knowledge sector and away from more traditional service and manufacturing gigs, which have historically provided Louisville’s base.
It’s worth considering that socially regressive lawmaking in service of a political-minority point of view not only looks absurd to much of the outside world, but it also has the potential to adversely affect our long-term economic prospects.
“[Kentucky is] being left behind,” Cowgill says. “There’s a lot of progress being made for not only gay rights, but just human rights in general, and it just shows that Louisville’s not ahead of the curve on that, and Kentucky in general. It’s always been the coastal states that have been the most progressive and have the most progressive laws protecting rights, and it just kind of lumps Kentucky in with more of those southern states that are really out of touch.”