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.

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Bytes: The Triad is a Five-Legged Stool

THE TRIAD IS A FIVE-LEGGED STOOL

by

Ron Morgan

I bought the party line that adoption consists of the Triad because it’s repeated so often and so reverentially that it takes on the quality of a sacred litany… however you want to call it out: adoptee/adoptive parent/birthmother, adoptee/adopter/natural mother, etc etc ad infinitum world without end. But then it dawned on me… probably after attending another moribund conference dedicated to truth in adoption (where 99% of the presenters and 60% of the attendees were therapists and social workers)… the Triad is a shell-game.

Adoption actually consists of five legs, the adoptee, the adopters, the first parents, the full gamut of adoption professionals, and the state. Adoption professionals, a category in which can be lumped social workers, facilitators, attorneys and therapists, may disagree within their class on what adoption is, but are adament in invoking their privilege to define what adoption is to those in the first three categories (those to whom adoption is an existential reality). The state ultimately holds the power; the state created adoption out of whole cloth, and reserves the ultimate right to decide not only what adoption is and will be, but also the right to enforce its will on all the other four legs, through statute and regulation.

The beauty of the Triad, at least to the fourth and fifth leg, is that it renders their agency invisible. The state and its quasi-agents, the professional adoption class, can float divinely over the pell mell and gore, offering definitive commentary and altering the rules of the game. It’s a tidy racket.

 

Ron Morgan is a long-time adoptee rights activist  and former Executive Chair of Bastard Nation.  He is a late discovery adoptee  and currently lives outside of Portland, Oregon.

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Bytes: Medical History

WHY BASTARD NATION DOES NOT USE MEDICAL HISTORY AS AN ARGUMENT FOR ACCESS TO ORIGINAL BIRTH CERTIFICATES

by

Janet Allen

Is anyone under any obligation to give out their medical histories to family members? Of course not. If you ask your grandmother if she ever had a life threatening disease and she tells you to go sit on ice, will you be filing a non-disclosure of medical history suit against her? Of course not!

What does medical history have to do with obtaining your original birth certificate? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. If, you decide to search for your birth family and become reunited due to the information found on your original birth certificate then it is possible that you might find out some medical history information. That discovery comes from searching and reunited, not from OBC access.

I am under no obligation to tell my biological daughters any medical history information about myself. Nor should adoptees expect that it is their “right” to have their birth families provide you with medical history information. Some will and some won’t When a Contract Preference Form (CPF), is included in legislation, there is a trade off that is inherent in the form. If a natural mother prefers not to be contacted in order to get her wishes included in the adoptees file, she must fill out a medical history form. The only reason that it is an acceptable practice is because the natural mother wants something in return– (her wish for no contact to be passed on to the adult adoptee.*

Anyone who uses medical history as an argument for OBC access is just opening the door to trouble. Legislators will be quick to look at the adoptee and suggest that if he or she wants medical history, then why not create an anonymous medical history registry. That would satisfy the adoptee’s request while at the same time let the legislators off the hook regarding the emotional subject of OBC access. We all know that registries don’t work. We all know that they are not well maintained, financed, or updated. We also all know that dead folks can’t register whether it’s anonymous or not!

It’s beyond time that all adoptee band together and simply ask for what we want. We are adults now and we don’t have to be ashamed or embarrassed to ask for what is rightfully ours. We need no argument further than the first that these are OUR birth certificates and we should have them; just like all other adults. Don’t muddy the waters with search, reunion, and medical issues. Focus on the simple fact that OBCs should belong to us . Period.

Janet Allen is a former member of the Bastard Nation Executive Committee and served as a three term members of the New Hampshire l House of Representatives. She was the first person to receive her original birth certificate on January 34, 2005 under New Hampshire’s open records law.

*Bastard Nation supports no legislation that conflates the CPF with a Disclosure Veto and mandates  that women  submit a medical history to the state in order to guarantee the sealing of the OBC.

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Indiana: Anonymous Medical Histories – Not Rights

Excuse my impatience, but just give Hoosier Bastards their goddamned OBCs and be done with it!

The  newest trick pony spinning  on the Indiana merry-go-round  is HB 1029 sponsored by freshman Rep. Sharon Engle (R-Attica).  The bill, if passed, according to the Lafayette Journal Courier,  would allow the relatives of adoptees and pre-adoptive siblings  access to birthparent medical histories. Current law permits adoptees birthparents, adoptive parents, relatives of an adoptive parent, state or country child and family services-related officials, adoption agencies, and courts to petition for the release of medical information.   (I have no idea why a court would have to petition  itself  to get the records.  Maybe it’s an Indiana thing . A similar bill was stuck in committee last session.

Here’s the synopsis of the bill taken from the Indiana Leg page.  Scroll down the bill page page and you’ll see the entire bill.  Notice that there is only a minimal change in current language.
… Continue Reading

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“I’m Having Their Baby:” Bowling for Babies Redux

(Note: Since I changed formats, spacing has become an issue in some posts, and I can’t get it fixed) 

Since I was forced back into the job market at a time when most people my age have already retired, it’s been difficult to find time to sit down and blog. After 4-10 hours+ of manual labor, the likes of which I haven’t done in 45 years, the mind numbs  thoughts of the blogosphere. But, sometimes enough is enough and the adrenalin kicks in..

To wit:  I’m Having Their Baby, Oxygen Network’s  new  voyeur docu where titillated couch consumers and Snooki fans get to watch adoption agents and their clueless customers, ie PAPs, vie for the attention and ultimate product of  pregos in trouble and  need of social engineering.. There’s not been such an uproar in AdoptionLand since Orphan hit the big screen when adoption agents, their industrial hangers-on, Christian orphan savers, politicians, paps and adopters hit the keyboards over Hollywood’s “destruction of adoption.” Bastards and birthers found the whole business amusing.

I’ll be blogging more about I’m Having Their Baby (at least I plan to), but in the meantime I want to remind people that the concept of the show is nothing new.

… Continue Reading

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FACEBOOK OFFICIAL BN PAGE

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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)

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

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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!

Read 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.

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PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: Meet Sharley!

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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.

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Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Indiana Open Access

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SAMPLE RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

SAMPLE RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

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.