This is a reworking of a note I wrote over at Facebook. After I posted it I thought, oh what the hell, I'll add it to ULB too.
A Note About My Notes
The adoption news stories you see on my profile come from an automatic RSS feed from http://adoptionnewsfeed.bl
ogspot.com, which itself is generated from adoption news stories submitted to digg.com. (And thank you Claud for teaching me how to connect all this)
If you're not familiar with digg, what an incredible site it is, and the importance of having a story go popular, you may want to read here before going any further. The info is a little dated, but it still gives a really good overview.
Since 2007, I've submitted over 1,500 news articles to digg dealing with adoption, corruption, reunion, legislation, reproductive technologies, identity rights, and highlighting the fact that there are hundreds of thousands of kids in foster care that age out each year with few if any resources, all while Americans spend billions of dollars each year adopting newborns and supposed orphans from overseas.
This is what the average American untouched by adoption believes:
There are countless newborns available for adoption in America. There are tons of women who want nothing to do with their babies and who will gladly turn them over for adoption. Overseas countries are full of Dickensian squalid orphanages packed to the rafters with wailing abandoned newborns. Searching adoptees are creepy stalkers who pound on the doors of their cowering birthmothers, and any mother who lost a child to adoption was most likely a drug addict, an abuser, a slut or a combination thereof. Oh, and my best friend's cousin's hairdresser was adopted and is perfectly happy with it.
When I started, I was lucky if any of the news stories got one or two votes (aka diggs). Many of the comments on some of the articles reflected those views in the paragraph above. There were even comments along the lines of it's not that bad if an infant is kidnapped from a poor country and adopted by rich Americans, because of that better life mythology.
Recently, I've been incredibly lucky with a few popular stories (stories that got 100+ votes), and in addition I am beyond blessed to have a few digg friends I adore -- with no connection to adoption whatsoever -- who regularly digg my submissions.
I believe that to have any effective change, there needs to be education and awareness spread to those outside our adoption circles. I've seen a noticeably shift in the collective thinking of comments as well. While there will always be trolls who post easily ignorable comments, many of the comments on the news stories are thoughtful, contemplative and show a positive shift in basic assumptions and misconceptions regarding adoption.
Because digg remains such a vital site to get the best of the news, having these stories out there reaches people far outside our circles.
So when you see a story and you think it's important, please consider giving it a digg. You can connect digg with your Facebook account to make it easier for you. There's a brief instruction guide on how to do this here
Thanks for taking the time to read this. If you're submitting newspaper articles to digg, please be sure I know your digg username so I can add your submissions to my reader and digg/blog you too.
And if you're a non-adoptee digg friend, I appreciate you more than you'll ever know. I don't know which one of you is making these recent stories go popular, but I love you for it. Thank you.