Municipal Zoo

I’m not really quite sure how to address this since there very well may be a number of people reading this post in relation to an editorial my mom posted her local newspaper.

Last weekend, I went home to visit my family in Southern Maine.  I had a chance to read up on some local news and stumbled across an article about an adoptive family with around 10 children.  Most of them are adoptees and hail from Asia and Africa.

The interview was focused the father’s solar panel business, yet had a rather large photo of his family on the front with an article title that read “Welcome to the ______ Municipal Zoo.” (I’ve omitted the town name for anonymity).  Next to it was a large photo caption describing the family and adoptees ranging in age and in origin.

Both my mother and my sister were quite stunned.  The quote came from the father who was asked to create a title that most accurately describes his family.  What had probably seemed like an innocuous answer at the time, felt quite strange to me.  Were we as adoptees considered different animal breeds in our transracial families?  I had never really thought about it, but in this day and age of perverted multiculturalism where many adoptive parents seek to diversify their families through adoption I guess I really shouldn’t be that surprised.

I’m not incredibly surprised by his comment and I don’t completely feel that he should absorb all the blame, but I feel that the local paper deserves much the same if not a majority of the blame for shamefully and irresponsibly taking that quote out of context.  I wish I had the full article to post however, it being a small local paper, the article does not appear on their website.

I’m embarrassed for the father who made the remark, but I’m more ashamed of how the news paper handled writing the story.  I’m proud of my mom who made it a point to immediately write an op-ed for denouncing the newspaper of its misleading error.  It’s too often that people of color are often handed the educational role of correcting those who offend.  I’m glad that to know that my mom has taken a proactive rather than passive role in righting the wrong, and I hope that other a-parents will also take the lead in not just issues related to adoption, but issues of race as well as socioeconomic status.  We’re all so privileged in many regards as adoptees and a-parents; which assigns transracial adoptive parents even more responsibility when it comes to the ways in which you raise us, and the ways in which you portray us to the non-adoptive world.


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