“Why,” asks Yemsrach’s mother, “did an adoption agency tell Angelina Jolie I died of AIDS when they gave her my baby?”
If she doesn’t know, she’s the only human being on this planet who doesn’t know. I will tell you why, even though you know and I know and everyone you know knows and everyone involved in adoption damned well fucking knows:
The agency told Angelina Jolie that because it’s what Angelina Jolie wanted to hear, and because the agency knew she would hand over the money without asking many questions. Everybody knows that. Absolutely everybody who’s read an article or three about international adoption in the past ten years knows the international adoption industry is an exceptionally corrupt one.
I’ve had it. I’m so tired of the constant, self-justifying drone of “not MY adoption” and “My baby was left by the side of the road/is a Real True Orphan/was totally gonna die.” So fuck international adoption. Fuck “We didn’t know.” And if you can’t do the amount of homework and research to add someone to your family that you’d put into buying a used car, then fuck you and fuck your expectations of sympathy.
The sellers of children and the sellers of used cars have a few very important things in common: They want your money, they will lie to you, and they need to move the product, now, before it’s too old. You know this. Everybody knows this. Only one group, however, is selling human beings. That means they should be held up to even more scrutiny than the other group, because children are people and people are more important than things. Everybody knows that.
And if you did your research, discovered all the “used car dealers” you could find were crooks, and did business with them anyway because this was the “car” you wanted, even to the point of helping them steal the “car” yourself, well, fuck you twice, and fuck all your supporters, and fuck everyone who helped you, you filthy, underhanded, heartless, soulless thieving piece of shit.
And if you discover your “car” was stolen and won’t return him or her anyway? There are not enough fuck yous on planet Earth.
Really, is there any other situation in which someone stands to score tens of thousands of dollars from you…and you believe everything they say? Any other situation in which you’d think of paying a cash bribe as an acceptable way of doing business? And if you are rich and famous, all that goes double. You know you’re at a bigger risk of being lied to than the average person. And yeah, so does everybody else.
In 2004, when it became apparent that Rath’s adoption was dodgy, Angelina said “I would never rob a mother of her child. I can only imagine how dreadful that would feel.”
No, you can’t, Ms. Jolie. If you allowed yourself to imagine it, you’d have to feel bad about the fact that you had a baby delivered to you on a movie set by a bad, bad actor. And I don’t give a damn if you didn’t know, because you didn’t bother to find out. The online adult adoptee community and others were raising the alarm about Galindo for a long time before anything was done about her. That’s how these stories generally go. With Lauryn Galindo, they go back to at least 2000. Angelina Jolie could have learned about Galindo before she adopted simply by Googling her name. But Lauryn said she was Doing Good, and that was good enough for Angelina Jolie, who cares so, so much about mothers who lose their children.
Jolie continued, “Maddox is my baby, he is by my side all the time, and I think I can give him so much. I can no more imagine living without him than not breathing.”
That makes it OK. That’s how some people sleep at night, secure in the knowledge that having money and things is much better than having one’s own country, language, and family. (Naturally, most of these sweetly sleeping grown-ups were brought up in their own families and countries, and they have all that stuff plus money and things, so they know alll about that trade-off and how it might feel to a child.)
Parents of international adoption, stop lying to a country that already seems eager to ignore any bad thing it ever hears about any adoption–especially if you’re rich and famous. You’re in a position to make international adoption better for everyone. You have the country’s ear. Stop using that power to make things worse instead of better (YOU GO MONYETTA SHAW!).
Stop lying to your children. You’re hurting them.
There is no excuse for this “I didn’t know”-ing. You did know. If you participated in international adoption, certainly within the past ten years, you know you were risking doing something very, very wrong.
And I don’t know why you think you should get to feel better if you really didn’t know. If you really didn’t know, what should anyone think of you? That you’re too selfish, blind and stupid to be raising any kids? That’s not one bit better, is it?