Wednesday, January 09, 2002

LOUSY SITUATION: American parents are lining up to adopt Afghan children, reports the Boston Globe, but it's not happening, for two big reasons:

Islam does not recognize adoption, and cultural tradition prohibits it. Orphans in Afghanistan tend to live with extended family - a cousin, aunt, or even a more distant relative. Orphans are not only defined by the loss of two parents; many Afghanistan orphanages take in children who have one parent missing, usually a father, to help relatives with the cost of another mouth to feed in a country where women routinely have six or seven children.

Even if Islam permitted the practice, logistics and US law would prevent any child from leaving the country. The US government doesn't allow adoption in devastated nations so soon after a war; the chance is too great that children designated as orphaned may have merely been separated from their parents.

Which is pretty crappy, as the article estimates there's 1 million Afghan orphans. They also mention this:

Just like during every world disaster, American families started calling adoption agencies as soon as the bombing of Afghanistan began, wondering how to give a home to the hundreds of poverty-stricken children they saw in media reports.

Is this the Jeffersonian wing of the American populace again --to use Meadian terminology? Or what? I mean, I'm glad people do that; it means as a nation we're not limited to giving money to Sally Struthers and UNICEF boxes.

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