Arkansas Supreme Court Okays Foster Parenting for Gays and Lesbians

Jim Burroway

June 30th, 2006

This is an important red-state development. In a 7-0 decision, the Arkansas Supreme Court struck down that state’s policy against allowing gays and lesbians to become foster parents, saying:

There is no correlation between the health, welfare and safety of foster children and the blanket exclusion of any individual who is a homosexual or who resides in a household with a homosexual.

The court further noted that the Child Welfare Agency Review Board, which established the policy, was motivated “not to promote the health, safety and welfare of foster children but rather [was] based upon the board’s views of morality and its bias against homosexuals.”

Among the many charges that were raised in lower court arguments by supporters of the ban were of supposedly higher rates of pedophilia among homosexuals. But the lower court judge was able to see through that smokescreen and rejected the “expert” testimony of Dr. George Rekers, who is famous for misrepresenting social science research of child sexual abuse to try to draw a link between homosexuality and pedophilia. Hopefully, this decision will become another nail in that coffin.

You can learn more about the supposed link between homosexuality and child sexual abuse in our report, Testing the Premise: Are Gays A Threat To Our Children?

Update: Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee wants the legislature to re-impose the ban. With gubernatorial elections looming in the fall, you can count on a long hot Ozark summer.

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