Friday, April 3, 2009

Madonna to appeal court ruling on Malawi adoption

So, it seems that the material girl "can't always get what she wants" in the immortal words of Mick Jagger. I have deliberately not posted on this issue, instead waiting the outcome of the court's decision.

Madonna, the newly divorced mum of 3 wanted a sibling for her Malawi born and adopted son. While I do not fault her for wanting her son to have someone in the family who looks like him and even comes from his country of origin, rules are not made to be broken - not even for celebrities.

Here is an excerpt from the story: Malawi requires prospective parents to live in the country for 18 to 24 months while child welfare authorities assess their suitability - a rule that was bent when Madonna was allowed to take her now 3-year-old son David to London in 2006 before his adoption was finalized two years later. Madonna has two other children, Lourdes, 12, and Rocco, 8.

Chombo said other foreigners have adopted in Malawi, but Madonna's was the only case in which residency was waived, and she indicated concern that doing so again could set a precedent that might jeopardize children."It is necessary that we look beyond the petitioner ... and consider the consequences of opening the doors too wide," the judge said. "By removing the very safeguard that is supposed to protect our children, the courts ... could actually facilitate trafficking of children by some unscrupulous individuals."

The judge also made clear she was not questioning Madonna's intentions, and even praised the "noble" work the singer's charity has done to feed, educate and provide medical care for some of Malawi's more than 1 million orphans, half of whom have lost parents to AIDS."

Years ago, whilst living in Europe, my partner at the time asked me to marry him. We wanted to marry in America with our famiiles around us - that was cost-prohibitive - our next option was England where I am a citizen - that was not an option due to the same residency requirements that are holding up Madonna's desired second adoption in Malawi. We ultimately settled in a "Vegas-esque" civil ceremony in Denmark and then had the marriage solomnized in Switzerland sans family. We respected the laws of the land as we understood them and found a workaround. Madonna should do the same. If she truly desires a sibling for her other children, she can find a child here in the U.S., sans familial ties and preferably an orphan.

The sad thing in this case is that but for the love of the grandmother and all the static she brought forth, she might have been successful in her quest.

I am all for adoption, but agree with British child advocates and others who believe that children are best served when they are with their families who know and love them - no amount of love and money and nannying can replace blood relatives.

Here is the link to the story as posted around 17 hours today:

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