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A Case Against Interracial Adoption Essay

1968 words - 8 pages

Black children are disproportionately represented in the foster care system. In the most recent Statistical Abstract published in 2011 by the U.S. Census Bureau, Black children accounted for 15% of the U.S. child population in 2009. In contrast, Black children were at almost 30% of the total number of children in foster care for the same year according to the Department of Health and Human Services 2009 Foster Care report. In addition, there are not enough Black families available to adopt these children. Interracial adoption advocates often hail it as a good solution to address these problems. Interracial adoption is promoted as a major step towards an integrated, unprejudiced, and colorblind society. However, instead of healing the wounds of racism, interracial adoption often contributes to racist ideologies and practices that devalue family relationships in the Black community (Roberts 50). This type of adoption is a surface only solution that fails to dig deeper and address the underlying reasons for the disproportionate representation of Black children in foster care and the lack of minority adoptive parents. This deeper analysis exposes a system of that is very biased against the Black community in the adoption industry. Even when it is altruistic, interracial adoption is mostly detrimental to the Black community because it aids in the breakdown of Black families and the dismissal of the root causes of the circumstances that lead to large numbers of Black children needing to be adopted in the first place. Furthermore, interracial adoption has not made any significant difference in lowering the numbers of Black children in foster care.
Poverty is the primary reason that a disproportionate number of Black children end up in foster care and may eventually need adoptive homes (Perry 48). Poverty causes include risk factors such as unemployment, teen parenthood, substance abuse, incarceration, domestic violence, and mental illness. These tend to result in high levels of child maltreatment (Hill 8). Blacks have lower incomes and are more likely to live in poverty. According to the Pew Research Center, the median wealth of White households is 20 times higher than that of Black households (Kochhar, Fry and Taylor). As a result, they are far more likely to be involved in the child welfare system than White families. Additionally, although not overtly used, economic status is one of the measures agencies use to screen for potential adoptive parents. White families generally have more wealth and incomes compared to Black families and have an advantage when it comes to qualifying as adoptive parents. Although interracial adoption removes some children from foster care and places them in loving homes, a better solution would be policies that addressed the problems of poverty and income disparities in the Black community. These policies would help prevent scores of Black children from entering the foster care system in the first place and needing to...

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