Our Mission

Bastard Nation advocates for the civil and human rights of adult citizens who were adopted as children. Millions of North Americans are prohibited by law from accessing personal records that pertain to their historical, genetic and legal identities. Such records are held by their governments in secret and without accountability, due solely to the fact that they were adopted.
Bastard Nation campaigns for the restoration of their right to access their records. The right to know one’s identity is primarily a political issue directly affected by the practice of sealed records adoptions. Please join us in our efforts to end a hidden legacy of shame, fear and venality.


Frequently Asked Questions What’s with the name? The more than half-century old practice of impounding and sealing an adopted person’s original birth records in perpetuity has had the disastrous effect of breeding deep and long lasting attitudes of shame in all areas of the adoption process. Secrets and lies abound. …

Follow Bastard Nation
FacebookTwitterLinkedInPinterestRedditGoogle GmailShare This!

Position Papers

Bastard Nation Position Papers These papers cover related issues more in depth and can be printed out for use in local public education or legislative campaigns. Bastard Nation’s Mission Statement From The Basic Bastard: Part I: Open Records: Why It’s an Issue Part V: Conditional Access Legislation Part VIII: Legalized Anonymous Infant Abandonment / …

Follow Bastard Nation

Take Action

 ACT Ideas for Getting involved You’re a Tax-paying citizen – NOT a Second-class citizen! Educate yourself, your community, and your legislators. The Basic Bastard The basics of Adoptee Rights Activism. Read it to know the issues and the arguments. Influencing Legislation A primer on getting the word out. Read it, …

Follow Bastard Nation


Local Laws, Activism and Contacts Learn more about Adoption Rights History and Law Bastard Nation’s Mission Statement The Basic Bastard – a collection of short articles address the main issues and questions regarding Bastard Nation and adoptee rights. Bastard Nation’s Position Papers Bastard Bytes: Printable papers for activists, legislators, and the media …

Follow Bastard Nation

Featured News:

The United States According to Bastard Nation

The BASTARDIZED states of Alabama, Alaska, Oregon, Kansas, New Hampshire Maine and Rhode Island are the only U.S. states where adult adoptees have unrestricted access to their own original birth records! Join the fight to stamp out the seal of supreme Bastardy on the rest of the nation!

Bastard Nation is dedicated to the recognition of the full human and civil rights of adult Adoptees. Toward that end, we advocate the opening to Adoptees, upon request at age of majority, of those government documents which pertain to the Adoptee’s historical, genetic, and legal identity, including the unaltered original birth certificate and adoption decree. Bastard Nation asserts that it is the right of people everywhere to have their official original birth records unaltered and free from falsification, and that the adoptive status of any person should not prohibit him or her from choosing to exercise that right. We have reclaimed the badge of bastardy placed on us by those who would attempt to shame us; we see nothing shameful in having been born out of wedlock or in being adopted. Bastard Nation does not support mandated mutual consent registries or intermediary systems in place of unconditional open records, nor any other system that is less than access on demand to the adult Adoptee, without condition, and without qualification.

Follow Bastard Nation

Mari Steed Joins Bastard Nation’s Executive Committee

mari_steed2 (1)We are happy to announce that long-time adoptee rights activist Mari Steed has been named Vice President of Bastard Nation. Mari has been with us from the beginning and has played an invaluable role in our formation and success.

Mari is the mother of a daughter relinquished to adoption in the US in 1978. She is also an adopted adult born in Ireland in 1960 and trafficked to the US in 1961. She has been joyously reunited with her daughter since 1997 and with her mother, now recently passed, since 2001. Mari serves as US Coordinator with Adoption Rights Alliance and with The Philomena Project, an initiative started by Irish mother Philomena Lee (whose story serves as the basis for recent Oscar-nominated film Philomena), Philomena’s daughter Jane Libberton, and Adoption Rights Alliance. The Project has taken the issue to the Irish State, Washington, DC and even the Vatican. In 2003, she co-founded Justice for Magdalenes (now known as Justice for Magdalenes Research), an advocacy organization which successfully campaigned for a State apology and restorative justice for survivors of Ireland’s Magdalene Laundries. She currently serves as the group’s Committee Director. Mari has been interviewed, written and spoken extensively on Ireland’s adoption exportation, intercountry adoption practice, US adoption activism and the Magdalene Laundries. She has also testified on the US ratification of the Hague Convention on Intercountry Adoption and both Pennsylvania and New Jersey adoption legislation.

Please welcome Mari!

Follow Bastard Nation

BASTARD NATION ACTION ALERT: Pennsylvania HB 162 Amended and Gutted. Contact Rules Committee Today! Vote No!

Distribute Freely!

Pennsylvania HB 162 Rules Committee Action Alert


Pennsylvania HB 162 Rules Committee Action Alert

Pennsylvania HB 162 has been amended to include a birth parent redaction demand provision! The bill has been committed to the House Rules Committee. Please take action now by contacting the House Rules Committee members. Email addresses, phone numbers, and available Twitter addresses are provided. If the bill passes out of Rules, we will issue an alert for the full House.

You do not have to be from or reside in PA to contact legislators, although if you are a constituent or PA adoptee or triad member, please do include that information in your contacts with legislators.

The original, clean bill would have provided a copy of an original birth certificate to adult adoptees at age 19 without condition. A standard and true “contact preference form” provision was also included.

  • The amended version is a redaction bill. Specifics set forth below here.
  • Amended version here.

Prime Sponsor: BENNINGHOFF


Current Status: Having passed out of the Children and Youth Committee, Pennsylvania House Bill 162 has been recommitted to the Rules Committee.

Section 2 (3)(a) requires the adult adoptee requesting a copy of their original birth certificate (OBC) to be 18 and have had graduated high school, received a GED, or “legally withdrawn” from secondary schooling.

Section 2 (3)(a) contains a Contact Preference Form provision.

Section 2 (3) (c) allows the birth parent to redact their name from the non-certified original birth certificate before it is released to the adult adoptee.

Section 2 (3) (c) (2) mandates that the option to file a redaction demand expires six months after the effective date of the legislation, however any redaction demands filed during that period remain in full force or effect unless later withdrawn.

Section 2 (3) (c)(4) A birth parent may withdraw their redaction demand at any time, however there is no provision to notify an adult adoptee that they have done so.

Section 2 (c) (7) allows an adoptee who has been the subject of a redaction of their OBC to every five years request that the Department of Health search for and contact the birth parent who filed the redaction demand and request that they remove it, as well as provide an updated medical history form. If it is determined that the birth parent is deceased, the adoptee will be entitled to an unredacted copy of their original birth certificate.

… Continue Reading

Follow Bastard Nation

Breaking News: JCICS shutting down!

Big news out of Washington this afternoon.

The Joint Council on International Childrens Services is closing up shop. No details yet.

I had heard from an inside source this morning that a BIG announcement regarding AdoptionLand would be made today.  I expected the news to be that the long-rumored merger of JCICS and the National Council for Adoption was imminent,  especially since the joint JCICS-NCFA  Children First conference was meeting today.

Can we say karma?

JCICS has long stood as a roadblock to genuine adoption reform and adoption ethics in general, especially in international adoption, and for the last few years has been embroiled in controversies, including its role in criminal adoption of  Masha Allen.

Nature abhors a vacuum and this is a superb opportunity for the good guys to take charge.

As of this writing, the JCICS webpage is still shilling for money with no closing announcement.

Whatever happens next:  Rejoice. The wicked witch is dead.

Marley Greiner, Exe. Chair

Follow us on Twitter @BastardsUnite

Follow Bastard Nation

Massachusetts: S1114/H2045 – Submitted Testimony in Support

BN logo

Bastard Nation Testimony in Support of  1114 and H 2045
Joint Committee on Public Health
June 23, 2015
Submitted by Marley E. Greiner, Executive Chair

Bastard Nation: the Adoptee Rights Organization is the largest adoptee civil rights organization in the United States. We support only full unrestricted access for all adopted persons, to their original birth certificates (OBC). We do not support any restrictions such as the Affidavit of Non-Disclosure, Disclosure Vetoes (DV), Contact Vetoes (CV), white-outs, or any other form of restricted access to a true copy of the original birth certificate.

We support the passage of S 1114 and H2045 as written, and urge it be voted out of the Joint Committee on Public Health.
Current Massachusetts law allows adoptees to access their original birth certificates without condition at age 18 if they were adopted on or before July 17, 1974 or on or after January 1, 2008.

Proposed S 1144 and its companion, H.2045, possibly the shortest and easiest to understand adoptee access bill ever, reads as follows:

Section 2B of chapter 46 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2008 Official Edition, is hereby amended by striking out, in line 3, the words “on or before July 17, 1974 or on or after January 1, 2008” and by striking out in lines 4 and 5, the words “on or after January 1, 2008.”

In other words, it would remove the” black hole” and give all adult Massachusetts adoptees their OBCs, without condition, redactions or vetoes.

Nine years ago Bastard Nation was closely involved in the SB 959 campaign That bill would have restored the right of all Massachusetts-born adopted adults to unrestricted access their own original birth certificates upon request. I personally came to Boston for a few days, walked the halls, and testified on behalf of that bill before the Joint Committee on Children and Families. Talking to legislators and their aides I was assured that it would pass out of the committee as a clean bill. “It’s a no brainer”was a phrase I heard repeatedly. Judging from my discussions and the reaction of committee members during the hearing, I left Boston confident that that bill had a good chance of passing not only out of the committee but by the legislature. Massachusetts would join the list of states that returned its adoptees to equal legal status.
… Continue Reading

Follow Bastard Nation



Join us on the Official Bastard Nation Facebook page. The only "adoption" page on Facebook dedicated to discussion and promotion of adoptee autonomy, civil rights, bastard theory, political organizing, and activism. You can also sign up there for our BN mail list which includes all of our Action Alerts. This is not a search and support page. No Woundies need apply! (Page live on July 1, 2015)



Join the Bastard Nation Public Page, a public service for Bastard Nationals, friends and supporters. General discussion on adoptee rights and related issues.



Join us on Twitter. All the Bastardly news fit to tweet!



Join us on Pinterest. Bastard icons, images, members, actions, politics, and fun. And Christopher Walken!

Become a Bastard Nation Legislative Liaison!

Become a Bastard Nation Legislative Liaison!

Bastard Nation needs Legislative Liaisons in every state with laws that seal adoption records. We need eyes and ears in the legislatures, creating relationships and gathering information.

What does a BN Legislative Liaison do? They talk with lawmakers and their staff about adoptee rights and the laws that seal records. They distribute Bastard Nation position papers and FAQs to legislators and staff members. They record their conversations and report to the BN Legislative Committee.

They are organized, informed, friendly, helpful, and engaged.

What do you need to do to be a BN Legislative Liaison?

1. You need to live close to the capitol of your state.
2. You need to be able to appear friendly, even when talking with people who disagree with you or are just disagreeable, period.
3. You need to have a flexible schedule.
4. You need to agree with Bastard Nation’s mission: If you don’t know what that is, go to bastardnation.org, it’s right there on our welcome page.

Those are the prerequisites. If you are interested, click the picture of the capitol rotunda, and fill out the application form. We will be in touch and schedule an online orientation and training.

We look forward to working with you!

Bastard Nation Thought for the Day: September 5, 2015

Bastard Nation Thought for the Day: September 5,  2015

Read a day-by-day account of what real live adoptees have to say about secret adoption and sealed records....A service of Bastard Nation and Emma Pea! Fighting adoptacrats since 1996.

Hit the pic for archives.



Bastard Nation Moms Club

Bastard Nation Moms Club

Bastard Nation is gathering the names of moms who are willing to step forward and say that they were never promised confidentiality. If you are willing to participate, please comment this status. Your name (and if you choose, the relinquishment date) will be added to a list used in newspaper ads and to educate legislators.

Bastard Nation Action Alerts (from old BN page)

bastard photos

Bastardly Books by Bastards and Friends



Click Here To Enter



Recent Comments

  • Shea: How can there be anything "outdated" about constitutional ri...
  • Kathleen Aghajanian: This was an excellent letter. Thank you...
  • Mary Cannon: Thank you for sharing your inception and life with Mama. See...

My, my it’s American Bastard Pie! (design by Lisa Zatonsky)

My, my it’s American  Bastard Pie! (design by Lisa Zatonsky)

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: CalOpen

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: CalOpen

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Indiana Open Access

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Indiana Open Access


BN_JoinSpermburst01 Join Bastard Nation! Send us a quick note with your contact information to join Bastard Nation. [contact_form]Contact Us We would like to hear from you!

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Your Message

Help us prevent spam:



Any political organization seeking to enact true open records legislation should be very clear with both their constituents and the legislators they work with about what the essential provisions of the proposed bill are. Any modification or deletion of the essential provisions of a bill should be immediate cause to have the bill killed.

Any political organization seeking the assistance of Bastard Nation to pass open records legislation must hold unconditional access by adult adoptees to the original record of their birth as an essential provision that cannot be modified or deleted. Read our Mission Statement.

Bastard Nation will not assist any political organization to pass open records legislation unless their governing board or other leadership

passes a written resolution such as the following that commits the board to a strategy of no compromise on key provisions
informs its constituents of this commitment and this strategy
informs the sponsoring legislators of this commitment and this strategy.

WHEREAS we recognize that disclosure and contact vetoes, redactions, mandatory intermediaries and registry provisions are an affront to the dignity of adopted persons everywhere and a violation of their right to due process and equal treatment under the law,

WHEREAS there has been a demonstrable negative effect on the ability to pass unconditional open records in states that have passed veto legislation and/or any provisions that are less than unconditional access on demand by the adult adoptee,

WHEREAS our primary goal is to restore the right of adult adoptees everywhere to be treated as full citizens under the law,

WE HEREBY DECLARE that under no circumstances will we accept the addition of veto, redaction, intermediary, or registry provisions, or any conditional provisions to our legislation that would be less than unconditional access for adult adoptees to the original record of their birth. All legislative sponsors and members of this organization will be informed of our policy on this matter to ensure that the bill is pulled promptly in the event of such revisions.