Thursday, June 05, 2008

I am no longer involved in the Day for Adoptee Rights

The Day for Adoptee Rights was always intended to be a mass action by adult adoptees in support of adoptee rights. It became apparent over the last few weeks that this vision was not going to happen. Low event registration on the DAR website and low hotel registration for event accommodations painted a stark portrait of the realities of our organizing effort. And so, on Thursday of last week I sent this post to the email list set up for event organizers (reproduced as posted, with typos and awkward grammar):



“May 29, 2008

When I first advocated an action at the National
Conference of State Legislatures lat year I knew how
much hard work it would take to be successful. I knew
it was possible for a small team to organize such an
event, but that the burdens would be great. Then, late
last summer, my wife was diagnosed with a malignant
brain tumor and my entire life focused on her
wellbeing and care.

In retrospect it was a serious mistake on my part not
to call for a suspension of planning for the ARD event
at that time. I had hoped that I could effectively act
as an adviser and see the event through. But even as
Loren slowly recovered, our family suffered the
long-term effects of her illness, in the form of
economic and psychological hardship, with the result
that my heart never fully rejoined the organizing
campaign. And now I am experiencing my own serious
health issues. The event is suffering from my
disconnection, and for that I take full
responsibility.

My original vision for the ARD protest was that it
would be a mass action, that it would create an
impact, as opposed to the small-scale adoption reform
actions of the recent past. As the low numbers of
committed attendees attest, this is not happening. I
would like to call for a suspension of the New Orleans
ARD protest. I say suspension rather than cancellation
because I still believe that a protest at an NCSL
annual meeting at some point in the future is a viable
and effective action if executed properly. A
suspension, rather than a cancellation, would allow
the committed attendees to meet in NOLA face to face
and plan next steps.

I invite your comments.

Ron Morgan”

I did not call for a cancellation but a reconsideration considering the realities on the ground. I anticipated that my recommendation would catalyze our efforts, but had no idea in how profound a manner it would do so. Bastard Nation, which had been deliberating on its own, agreed in principle with the recommendation, and have subsequently pulled out. Many of the other individuals on the volunteer organizing list did not. This is the discussion I had hoped to trigger.

In a series of remarkable posts one of the volunteer organizers revealed that Abrazos, a Texas adoption agency, had been fundraising under DAR’s name and had raised over 800 dollars for the event. This volunteer organizer stated she did not know whether this money was intended for DAR or if it was being raised to fund attendance by Abrazos staff and supporters to the event. This information was like a hand grenade thrown into the mix.

Since then the adoptee blogosphere has been alight with debriefings, analyses, recriminations, arguments and personal vilification. I don’t want to add to any of it. I am simply posting tonight to announce that I am no longer participating in the Day for Adoptee Rights event. The event is still going on without me, I wish them well. By the same token, I wish those who have pulled out of the event, including Bastard Nation, well in their endeavors. I am also announcing my retirement from “adoptee politics”, such as it is, although I will still post from time to time on on this blog on issues relating to adoptee rights.

I am not interested in comments posted in response to this announcement, it is what it is.

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