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Alabama High Court Hands Down Homophobic Adoption Ruling

Alabama High Court Hands Down Homophobic Adoption Ruling

Alabama Supreme Court

After adopting her partner's children in Georgia, a woman is told she is not a parent by Alabama's Supreme Court.

Nbroverman

Proving itself once again to be one of the most homophobic high courts in the nation, the Alabama Supreme Court Friday refused to recognize a Georgia adoption by a lesbian mother.

The woman, known only as V.L. in the case, adopted her partner's three children while they lived in Georgia in 2007. After the women broke up, the biological mother, known as E.L., moved the children to Alabama and denied her ex visitation rights. E.L. argued that the Georgia adoption was invalid in Alabama, according to AL.com, a website for several Alabama newspapers..

V.L. sued for visitation, winning and losing several times before the case went to Alabama's highest court. Working with the National Center for Lesbian Rights, V.L. argued that she was an adopted mother in Georgia and, in effect, should be one in Alabama. But the notoriously antigay Supreme Court didn't agree.

All but one of the Alabama justices "ruled that Alabama did not have to respect the Georgia court's adoption because the Court believed that Georgia law did not allow same-sex parents to adopt," the NCLR wrote in a statement last week.

One of the Alabama justices, Tom Parker, went even further, writing in a special ruling that adoption is a privilege, not a right, and children should be raised "with both a father and a mother."

"The biological mother in this case chose my client as a second parent to these children, before their births, during their conceptions, and in formal adoption proceedings intended to ensure my client's rights -- wherein she stated that having my client as a parent was in the children's best interests," Heather Fann, one of V.L.'s attorneys, said in a statement. "Because, many years later, she chose to contradict her own decision-making regarding the establishment of a family for those children, a court ruled today that my client is not a parent. Not only is that not true, its harm extends far beyond my client, to children who have called her mother their entire lives, and now to adoptive families throughout Alabama."

V.L. released her own statement: "It is extremely difficult to see the distress in my children as they realize that the courts who are tasked with putting their best interests first won't recognize our family. I am just a Mom who wanted and prayed for these children and raised them from birth, and I hope every day that we can be together again."

Nbroverman
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Neal Broverman

Neal Broverman is the Editorial Director, Print of Pride Media, publishers of The Advocate, Out, Out Traveler, and Plus, spending more than 20 years in journalism. He indulges his interest in transportation and urban planning with regular contributions to Los Angeles magazine, and his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He lives in the City of Angels with his husband, children, and their chiweenie.
Neal Broverman is the Editorial Director, Print of Pride Media, publishers of The Advocate, Out, Out Traveler, and Plus, spending more than 20 years in journalism. He indulges his interest in transportation and urban planning with regular contributions to Los Angeles magazine, and his work has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times and USA Today. He lives in the City of Angels with his husband, children, and their chiweenie.