More and more people in Houston have come to support the idea of adoption for gay couples, as shown through a newly-released study. Fox News reports that the Houston Area Study conducted by Dr. Stephen Klineberg found that only 19 percent of the people in the Houston area favored adoption rights for gay couples in 1991. Now in the year 2010, the study shows that the percentage has increased to 52 percent.
"I think the main difference [in acceptance] is more and more people know somebody who is gay or lesbian," says Houston Adoption Attorney Mitchell Katine, who handles legal matters surrounding adoptions for gay couples and lesbian couples.
While there seems to be a growing acceptance of same-sex couples adopting children in the Houston area, around the country the subject is still quite controversial. In November 2008, Arkansas voters passed Arkansas Act 1 through a voter ballot initiative with a 57 percent to 43 percent margin. This law made it illegal for unmarried couples to adopt, which particularly targeted same-sex couples because gay marriage is not legal in the state of Arkansas, as well as most other U.S states.
However, according to Arkansas News, a circuit judge recently struck down Arkansas Act 1 earlier this month because the judge ruled that the law infringed upon the fundamental right to privacy. As stated in Arkansas News, the overturning of the law was a big step for gay rights activists fighting for equal rights.
Opponents of the law had argued that the law was discriminatory against a group of adults willing to serve as foster or adoptive parents. Opponents also argued that Arkansas Act 1 had a disregard for the best interests of children and would potentially end up keeping children in state custody at additional and unnecessary costs to taxpayers.