THE BASTARD BYLINE
News From Bastard Nation: The Adoptee Rights Organization
April 14, 2003 Vol.1 No. 2
VICTORY IN GEORGIA IS OH SO CLOSE!
Georgia's Senate unanimously approved SB-192, a bill which would provide adult adoptees born in Georgia with unconditional access to their original birth certificates. The legislation is currently in the House, where it also passed the Judiciary Committee by unanimous vote. The bill is now pending in the Rules Committee, which decides whether it will go to the House floor for a vote by the full body. Because the session ends this week, immediate action is needed to help push this bill through its final steps in the Georgia Assembly. SEE THE LATEST ACTION ALERT FOR GEORGIA AT http://www.bastards.org/alert/index.html.
SB-192 was originally an OBC access bill, but has now been amended to include modifications to the State-run active registry, which were originally included in a separate bill. The registry modifications do not impact unconditional access to OBCs for adult adoptees born in Georgia.
EAGLE for Georgians is the local grassroots group behind the Georgia legislation. This is the group's third attempt at passing unconditional open records legislation for adult adoptees.
Georgia Legislature Website
EAGLE for Georgians Website
Nevada Open Records Bill Delayed by Senate Committee
Our dynamo Bastard National Jean Unrich and her Nevada Partners have been working non-stop to move along SB 267, Nevada Open's unconditional open records bill. The Nevada Financial & Governmental Organization, Veterans' Affairs & Election Committee heard testimony on SB 267 on March 28th but did not vote in order to give Washoe County Social Services an opportunity to present its written testimony. On April 10th, the Committee elected to send the bill to an interim session for more extensive review. Unfortunately this means the legislation will not have the opportunity to pass until 2005.
Jean and her colleagues have put together a prestigious group of supporters, including: American Adoption Congress, Concerned United Birthparents , The Foster Care and Adoption Association of Nevada, Holt International Children's Services, Mother's for Open Records Everywhere (M.O.R.E), National Association of Social Workers, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Northeastern Nevada Foster Parent and Adoption Association, and Sunflower Birthmothers.
Read More: www.nevadaopen.org
Hey Y'all! Louisiana's Next!
Kenny Tucker and Christie Little, Co-Chairs of LAA (Louisiana Adoption Advocates, are proud to announce the filing of an unconditional open records bill in the Louisiana Senate. Details of SB 941 can be found at http://www.legis.state.la.us.
Kenny, our big y'at Bastard, has been working on getting a thumbs up for LAA's open records bill from the Louisiana Legislature's Children's Code Committee. Kenny will address the Committee early in April. The Children's Code Committee advises the legislators on all bills affecting the Children's Code.
Louisiana Adoption Advocates: http://laa.digimarkz.com/01/
Teaching "Safe Haven Laws" in Public Schools
There is a bill pending before the Illinois Senate which proposes to include instruction of the Illinois Abandoned Newborn Infant Protection Act as part of sex education classes in all Illinois public schools. HB 2298 was passed unanimously by the Illinois House of Representatives and is currently being heard in the Senate.
Bastard Nation strongly opposes this bill. We believe that it is not the school's responsibility to instruct students about a law which allows girls to anonymously dump a baby, even though this law is currently CONDONED BY THE STATE OF ILLINOIS. Schools must not be used to advertise the baby dump law.
BN's Action Alert: http://www.bastards.org/alert/il-alert.html
BASTARD NATIONALS ON THE MOVE
Carson City, NV: Jean Uhrich and her Nevada Open compadres lobbying tirelessly for SB-267. They continue for the long haul in seeing adoptee rights legislation pass in Nevada.
Nevada Open: Born to Battle
Austin, TX: Donna Martz testifying against a bill that would have the effect of permanently sealing original birth certificates from foreign adoptees.
Little Rock, Arkansas: Tammie Biffle and Shanna Castle lobbying at the capital, paving the way for a future open records bill.
Jefferson City, Missouri: Carol Kurtz speaking before the House Committee meeting for MO2000's open records bill SB 322. Lindsay Woodside, recuperating from back surgery, cheering from home.
New York, New York: Marley Greiner participating in a roundtable discussion hosted by the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute as a follow-up to their new study, "Unintended Consequences: New Study Raises Serious Concerns About Legalized Infant Abandonment."
Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Kenny Tucker speaking to the Louisiana Task Force on Reproductive Technology in Baton Rouge. In an earlier radio interview, Kenny discussed donor adoption issues. A Loyola University law professor and member of the Task Force heard Kenny discussing donor identity issues on the radio and invited Kenny to speak to their group. http://laa.digimarkz.com/01/
Chicago, Illinois: Anita Field talking to IL legislators in an attempt to defeat IL HB 2298, a bill which would add the instruction of the IL Abandoned Newborn Protection Act to sex education classes in the public schools.
Concord, New Hampshire: The Honorable Janet Allen, NH Representative and Bastard National battling the proposed "safe haven" law, HB 104 in the corridors of the New Hampshire Senate.
NBC TV "John Walsh Show"
The world of national television beckons our executive chair, Marley Greiner. As a result of her interview in People Magazine, Marley was invited to participate in a discussion on "safe haven" laws on the "John Walsh Show." The show was taped on March 28th and aired on Monday, April 14th.
Measure 58 Film Premiere
"Measurable Rights: The Fight for Open Records in Oregon," filmed by Paul R. Fournier, is an extraordinary documentary of Measure 58, the historic open records ballet initiative. The film's world premier was held on March 21, 2003, at the Dallas Museum of Art as part of the Dallas Video Festival. At the conclusion of the viewing, Bastard National Marlena Villears conducted a question and answer session with the audience. Most frequently asked question: "What about the Texas law?"
Dial WLIP-AM : Wisconsin
Marley Greiner was a guest on the Alan Eisenberg Show, "Ask Eisenberg," on WLIP-AM, out of Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Saturday, March 22nd. Subject: Dump the Baby Dump Laws.
Woman Fights for Americans Stripped of their Identity
So says an article in the Suburban News Publications, Colombus, Ohio. The woman they're talking about is none other than our very own Marley Greiner. The reporter, Nikki Bornhorst, quotes Marley: "You have this whole system here where the motto is, 'This is our little secret -- no name, no blame, no shame.' The state should not be in the business of identity erasure." http://www.snponline.com/NEWS3-26/bosafehaven.htm
People Magazine: Redux
MaryAnne Cohen's reply to People Magazine's "Home Safe" article appears in the April 7th issue. Maryanne's letter praised People Magazine for presenting both sides of the "safe haven" issue. Maryanne added her excellent insight into why the "safe haven" laws do not work.
New Adoption Law Textbook
Documents from The Basic Bastard are included in a new textbook to be published by New York University Press. Law: An Adoption Reader, written by Joan Hollinger and Naomi Kahn.
Canadian Birth Mothers Oppose Safe Haven Laws
Canadian Council of Natural Mothers, Conseil canadien des meres naturelles, issued a policy statement concerning safe haven laws. The council believes these laws fail to serve either the best interest of unsupported mothers faced with unplanned pregnancies or the best interests of children.
Disclosure Vetoes in Alberta, Canada
Alberta is moving along a bill, Legislative Assembly Bill 24: The Child Welfare Amendment Act, which purports to open records to adoptees, but contains a disclosure veto "prohibiting the release of personal information in the orders, certificates and documents." This provision in Bill 24 treats adult adopts as if they are perpetual children who must have their birth parents' permission to access their own birth certificates. Bastard Nation opposes this demeaning law.
Contact Veto Bill Stalled in Ontario
Ontario's Bill 77, a bill to open records to adult adoptees, was not passed this session, thanks in part to BN Executive Committee Member Natalie Proctor Servant. Natalie, a native of Ottawa, has been spearheading the campaign to remove a contact veto provision from the bill.
WE ARE ALL OVER THE GLOBE
Readers checked in last month from as far away as Chile, London, and Canada. In the U.S. we heard from readers in Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, South Carolina, West Virginia, Maryland, Mississippi, Alaska, Louisiana, Missouri, California, Oklahoma, Oregon, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Alabama, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Michigan, and Arkansas.
Where The Action Is
Open records bills are in various stages of consideration in Nevada, Missouri, Louisiana, Georgia, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Stay tuned for updates and action alerts.
Nevada Open Website
Louisiana Adoption Advocates
Arkansas Open Needs Volunteers for Future Efforts!
EAGLE for Georgians
Active Legislation Endorsed by Bastard Nation:
WE'VE COME A LONG WAY, BASTARDS
Six years ago, when Bastard Nation was born.
Folks assumed we were some sort of subversive organization. After all, who would be crazy enough to join a group "with a name like that!"?
A major bank on the West Coast refused to have our checks printed because of "that word."
Newspapers deleted any mention of the words "Bastard Nation" from whatever we wrote, including our signatures.
Emails came from all over advising us to change our name because "the B word" is insulting.
Some triad organizations warned us to stay away because they thought our name and organization would set back the cause of open records.
Some members had to resort to receiving their Bastard Quarterly Newsletter in a plain brown wrapper. Otherwise, it mysteriously disappeared somewhere within the postal system.
Two states in our country had unconditional open records for adult adoptees, Kansas and Alaska.
Banks happily accept our business.
Triad organizations seek our help.
State groups want our endorsements.
Newspapers print our name freely in articles and signatures.
The Media seeks out our opinions on the whole spectrum of adoption issues.
Thousands of people visit our website each year.
Our name was "quoted" on the floor of the California Senate during a debate on the birth and death indices bill. The Senator was quoting Bastard Nation as his source of information.
Our name appears in the index of virtually every new adoption book that's published.
People are listening to us!
Four states in our country now have unconditional open records for adult adoptees. Bastard Nation was instrumental in helping to bring victories to Oregon and Alabama.
OVERHEARD AT VITAL STATS
Those records were destroyed. But you can get a court order to see them.
Due to the considerable amount of time which has passed, we no longer have your records. We just don't keep older things.
We have no record of you, Ma'am; so, basically, you don't exist. Is this some type of prank call?
Born? You were not born, you were adopted!
Records? We don't have no stinking records.
Those records can be released upon your death. If you are, indeed, deceased, please provide a death certificate matching the name on your birth certificate.
OVERHEARD ON THE BASTARD CHANNEL
Lindsay, Jean, and Kenny.... The Final 3. Who will be the first to open records in their state and become Bastard Idol 2003?
Will Lindsay play the Grandma Card and quilt her way into the hearts of the Missouri legislators? Will Kenny enchant the Judiciary Committee members by leaping onto the Committee table and performing a retro-70's disco dance plea for open records? Or will Jean win a majority of the Nevada Legislature by providing free 2 night passes to the Mustang Ranch for any man who dares to vote for open records in Carson City???
Let My Bastard People Go!
It Is Apparent
I Have Two Parents
Big Brother Makes Five
But He's So Jive
He Says Two Parents
Are Not Alive!
Where Can They Be?
Where Did They Go?
Big Brother Does Not Know!
Let My Bastard People Go!
Let My Bastard People Go!
Let My Bastard People go!
By Gavriela Person (1968 - 1997)
Who Are You?
Birth Parent or Relative
Adoptive Parent or Relative
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BASTARDS OF THE WORLD, UNITE!
YOU HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE BUT YOUR SHAME!
Editors: Anita Walker Field and David C. Ansardi
c. 2003 Bastard Nation: The Adoptee Rights Organization
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