NewsThu Sep 17, 2009 - 12:15 pm EST
Uruguay Approves Adoptions for Homosexual and Unmarried Couples
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, Latin America Correspondent
MONTEVIDEO, September 17, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Uruguayan Senate has approved a bill that, according to analysts, will likely allow homosexual and other unmarried couples to adopt children.
Under the terms of the bill, couples that have been registered in a civil union for over four years will be eligible to adopt children, as well as couples who can prove that they have been cohabiting for four years or more. Since homosexuals are allowed to establish civil unions, the legislation is expected to permit them to adopt as couples.
The bill, which is expected to be signed by Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez, will be the first of its kind in Latin America, and is one of several reforms that have been implemented in recent years to reward homosexual behavior in Uruguay.
Although Vazquez opposed the Broad Front when it attempted in 2008 to legalize abortion on demand, he has shown support for the homosexualist agenda in the past, and that support is expected to continue.
Homosexuals may already adopt children individually based on a law passed in 2004, and recently were permitted to enter the armed forces. Civil union legislation for homosexuals was passed in 2007, and a new law requiring schools to give pro-homosexual sex education classes was passed in 2008.
The Vice-President of the Uruguayan Episcopal Conference, Bishop Rodolfo Wirz, denounced the measure, calling it "counterproductive" for the society for failing to acknowledge the need of children to develop a sense of sexual identity, of the "complementarity between paternity and maternity," in an interview with the Catholic news agency ACI Prensa.
"I believe that the approval of the bill is a step backward for the development of society," Wirz added. "Furthermore, to be the first Latin American country in which this law is approved in favor of the adoption of homosexuals is not any point in favor; to the contrary it is lamentable, sad, because in this way those children who need to be adopted are not helped."
"This is not a matter of religion, philosophy, or sociology. This is something that refers essentially to respect for human nature," said the Archbishop of Montevideo in a public statement against the legislation. The archbishop also stated that the measure goes "against the fundamental human rights of human beings as persons."
Although President Vazquez' majority Broad Front coalition, a grouping of socialist parties, supports the bill, it is opposed by one of Uruguay's traditional political parties, the Nationalist Party, also known as the White Party (Partido Blanco).
White Party senator Eber da Rosa condemned the legislation in an interview with the Spanish press agency EFE, noting that "the father and the mother carry out the two key roles" in the upbringing of a child.
"In homosexual couples, those roles appear to be intermixed and for that reason the most appropriate thing is for adoptions to be done by heterosexual couples."
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