The adoption industry’s multi-racial remora fish
The adoption industry’s rearguard attempts to disallow ‘mixed-race’ adoptions are now grotesquely conservative
Remora fish (Echeneidae) are fascinating creatures. They typically associate themselves in different ways with larger marine animals such as sharks in a form of ‘commensalism’ (where one organism benefits from a relationship but the other is unaffected).
Wikipedia helpfully tells us that views divide controversially on how this relationship works. Do remora fish live off the decaying scraps of food trailing from a shark’s teeth and mouth? Or do they gorge on shark faeces instead? Top-end feeders? Or bottom-end feeders?
As with remora fish, so with the exotic life forms that flourish in and around the modern welfare state. None more impressive and tenacious than the protagonists of state control over ‘racism’.
I spent four years in South Africa as the apartheid regime wound down, and so perforce had to examine at close quarters different theories surrounding the very idea of ‘race’. Careful distinctions were drawn by Steve Biko’s Black Consciousness Movement and others between "multi-racial", "non-racial", and "anti-racial" approaches.
MuIti-racial meant that you accepted that separate races existed and were identifiable and then tried to devise constitutional arrangements to create a fair political balance between them. This was the logical basis for apartheid itself: legally defined categories for race as the basis for political rights.
Non-racial meant that you accepted that different races existed, but refused to take this into account in political or constitutional arrangements: all people are equal, one person one vote. This was the policy of the African National Congress and its Communist allies.
Anti-racial meant that you rejected a priori the very idea of races: there is only one race - the human race. This was the approach taken by the Pan Africanist Congress who incompetently tried to mobilize 'indigenous' Africans against European ‘settlers’ on an African nationalist platform. They had good jokes. They were asked about their infamous slogan "one settler, one bullet". “We are a poor organization - we have only one bullet for each settler!"
The key point in all this is that those who hooted loudest for a supposedly progressive non-racial outcome in apartheid South Africa are those who hoot loudest for a defensive multi-racial approach here in the UK now. This shows itself in many ways, above all the enforced categorisations of ‘ethnic minorities’ that appear in demands emanating from the Cabinet Office for staff surveys and other official processes.
The categories chosen (or not chosen – don’t ever ask why, say, Poles do not feature on these lists) show how vital it is for the race relations industry to create racial/ethic categories and assign people to them. Without these formalised state-created apartheid-style categories, the opportunities for asserting control over people and processes would be hugely reduced.
These issues come to a head with adoption. We have children without a home needing to get out of state institutions into a normal family, and we have parents wanting to adopt said children. On the face of it, creating arrangements that deliberately make it less likely that ‘ethnic minority’ children are in fact adopted would look to be a massive human rights abuse.
Yet this outcome is not only what we have, it is championed and enforced by the armies and ideologies of official multi-racialists, on the grounds that ethnic minority children should be adopted only by families of the same ethnicity. Anything else risks creating ‘psychological problems’.
Thus the embarrassingly poor propaganda pages in the Observer this weekend, as the multi-racialists in the form of the British Association for Adoption and Fostering push back against ‘Tory’ attempts to implement a more anti-racial approach to adoption. A small group of Hong Kong Chinese orphans who were adopted by ‘mainly white’ (sic) British parents decades ago have been studied:
Childhood and adolescence were particularly traumatic for some, with 54% saying they "felt uncomfortable" following comments about how they looked different from their adoptive family, while three-quarters admitted thinking that they wanted to look less Chinese. For a minority, it added, "race-based bullying" and discrimination "had a substantial negative impact on their wellbeing"
… Julia Feast, the BAAF's policy, research and development consultant, said it was crucial that the evidence was analysed objectively. "They [the government] are basing it on adopters saying there are all these children languishing in care, and rather than think about what research has been done in this country regarding the outcomes of transracial adoption they are going by the voice of prospective parents who think that love will be enough."
Horror! The government is thinking about children and loving parents, not about research! More research is needed! Quick, we urgently generous public funding to do it!
This article fails on the most primitive level of scientific credibility. So what if some Chinese adoptees felt uncomfortable in a mixed-ethnicity family decades ago, when attitudes to race and ethnicity in this country were completely different and ‘non-white’ faces of any sort were far rarer? The only test that matters is whether, all things considered, these children would have been better off by not being adopted. On which theme answers come there none.
The really baffling thing in all this is that thanks to the more or less uncontrolled immigration policies beloved by progressive forces here, the UK really is getting quite melting-potty anti-racial.
So-called ‘mixed’ marriages and relationships are ever more common, even chic. More and more children are being born and moving on to Olympic, academic and other success with skin hues and DNA combinations that tick no known Cabinet Office survey boxes. The adoption industry’s rearguard attempts to disallow ‘mixed-race’ adoptions are now grotesquely conservative, even reactionary.
This one is an easy win for the Government. Simply proclaim that henceforth any agency that uses race or ethnicity or any other scientifically bogus categorisations in adoption decisions and processes lays itself open to lawsuits from would-be adopting couples and children alike, claiming punitive damages for discrimination on human rights grounds.
Hit these greedy remora fish right where it hurts. Their food-supply of public money.
Charles Crawford is a Contributing Editor to The Commentator. A former British Ambassador in Sarajevo, Belgrade and Warsaw, he is now a private consultant and writer. Visit his website and follow him on Twitter: @charlescrawford
We are wholly dependent on the kindness of our readers for our continued work. We thank you in advance for any support you can offer.