Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I Adopted a White Baby

Now that I've gotten your attention, I have a few questions that I would like some feedback on:

If a Black Tanzanian were to find a job in Hamilton, Ontario (which has the highest child poverty rate in Canada) and adopt a White baby, wouldn't people wonder how that could happen?

If Denzel Washington flew throughout Europe and decided to collect a few White babies and give them a better life in the US, named them Leroy, LaDenzel and Sh'and're (with an accent on the e), wouldn't people wonder how that could happen?

What if I decided when I got home that I was so moved by the inter-racial adoption by White people in Tanzania adopting Black babies here that I decided to adopt an orphan from Vietnam or Iraq or New Zealand and raise him/her in my Black world and as a Black child, wouldn't people wonder how that could happen?

Better yet, wouldn't the child wonder who they were?


  1. When you lay it out like that, I wonder how inter-racial adoption became acceptable amongst White people.

    If a White person adopts a child because they want to make the child's life better, they have to consider that there are factors besides poverty that contribute to quality of life.

    The implicit belief that White, western culture is the best option for everyone really bothers me.

  2. if you are famous i dont think anyone wonders how that could happen.

    you on the other hand... yes.

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  4. If a black family in Canada wants to adopt a white baby, why not? Are there not black foster families who take in children of any race and ethnicity who do not have homes here (in Canada)? Are there not Tanzanian families in Tanzania who adopt Tanzanian babies?

    If the intention of the adoptive parent, race aside is to glorify adoption and do it for charity that's a problem of morality (and throw race in there, is a problem of history). Most parents who adopt from anywhere do it because they are wanting to share their life and love with a child who is in need of a home (often because they can not have their own).

    People will question it yes, the child will question themselves yes, the family will have a lot of learning to do yes.

    Here's a question. If I, as a Canadian (born and raised) of Egyptian/Lebanese origin, adopts an Asian and an African baby and for the hell of it, a South American baby too, whose parents have [died, been jailed, abandoned them, are bedridden, severe mental illness etc] and raise them in my Canadian household, speaking English (and Arabic), eating middle eastern food, studying at a French school, learning about global cultures (of their origin, mine, and their new country), dance to African, Spanish and Middle Eastern beats on the weekends, get hugs and kisses all the time, and are nurtured and healthy, are they in a bad position? Am I a bad parent? Am I a bad human? Do I love my children any less? Am I brainwashing my children to think that my culture(s) is(are) better than that of their birth parents? I'm not so sure.

  5. Not at all, Ashley, and I agree that if you can provide for a child in need, go for it. But when you start considering that a lot of people adopt overseas (East Asia, Africa, India, etc.) because the adoption process is a lot easier than in Canada, I start to have a big problem with that.

    I also have a problem with people at home that decide to have their own biological children and can't take care of them or don't really want them. Buy a puppy instead.

    There are lots of Canadian/American/White kids that need homes too.

    And to be honest with you, when have you ever seen a Black family with a White adopted kid? Especially compared to White parent/Black child adoptions. Genuine question needing a genuine answer.

  6. I completely agree. I have a problem with each of those issues also. Part of the challenge is that in Canada (I'm speculating) children "go into the system" at a later age (?) and Most adoptive parents want to adopt babies. This is so the childl grows up knowing them as their only parents (easier adjustment?). and there is likely more orphaned babies abroad. Also of course adoption is big business in some countries. But now that you have me thinking I want to look into this more.

    And I've thought about your last point before (as a kid 'what if my parents were polish? What is my parents were Korean? Congolese? Chilean? Haha). But is it because of the kids in the system? Or because how adoption is viewed in different cultures and communities? I have no clue?

  7. I don't know either. My post was really just to get people thinking (especially here in Tanzania) that adopting a child of a different race and culture is something you need to think long and hard about. And since I focus on identity, that's one of my issues.

    I think since it seems like the "norm" here, no one ever thinks about what happens when you move the child to your home country.

    It's like when people get divorced with young children, they really don't think about the consequences of a broken family for a child's identity and well-being.