Economist Jennifer Roback-Morse has repeatedly warned that intentionally severing the tie between biological parents and their offspring will result in greater intrusive government involvement with and regulation of family life not less as some liberals and libertarians assert. Take a gander at the new 277-page “parentage” bill (HB 1243) sponsored by State Representative Kelly Burke (D-Evergreen Park) for evidence that Roback-Morse is right.
This bill would replace the existing parentage law and would grant parental rights to adults who are neither the biological nor adoptive parents of children with whom they are living. Further, it has no explicit provision limiting the numbers of “parents” to two.
This bill states that a man or woman is determined to be the a parent if “for the first 2 years after the birth of the child, he [or she] resided in a household with the child, openly held out the child as his [or her] own during that time, the child had only one parent under law at that time, and that parent consented to the man’s [or woman's] holding out the child as her own.” This means that a man or woman cohabiting with the legal parent of a child for two years could be established as a legal parent. Parentage would no longer be connected to biology, marriage, or adoption. This is a revolutionary legal shift that bodes ill for children.
Equally bad, the bill states the following:
A woman is presumed to be the parent of a child if…she and the birth mother of the child have entered into a marriage, civil union, or substantially similar legal relationship, and the child is born to the birth mother during the marriage, civil union, or substantially similar legal relationship, except as provided by a valid gestational surrogacy contract.
This means that if a woman in a civil union with a woman has a sexual relationship with a man and conceives a child, the non-biological civil partner will be presumed to be the child’s parent. Her legal status as parent supersedes the rights of the biological father. Worse still, since the bill does not limit the number of parents, it’s within the realm of possibility that the child could have three legal parents.
Attorney and Director of the Marriage Law Foundation, William C. Duncan,warned about the radical and subversive nature of this shift of views on parentage: