Our Mission

Bastard Nation advocates for the civil and human rights of adult citizens who were adopted as children. Millions of North Americans are prohibited by law from accessing personal records that pertain to their historical, genetic and legal identities. Such records are held by their governments in secret and without accountability, due solely to the fact that they were adopted.
Bastard Nation campaigns for the restoration of their right to access their records. The right to know one’s identity is primarily a political issue directly affected by the practice of sealed records adoptions. Please join us in our efforts to end a hidden legacy of shame, fear and venality.

Politicians: No Tricks! No Treats! Only Rights!

Halloween OBC

Pumpkin courtesy Claudia Corrigan D’Arcy. Feel free to redistribute.

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Bastard Nation Exe.Chair to present on Jean Paton at ASAC 2014

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I am happy to announce that I’ll presenting at the 2014 Alliance for the Study of Adoption and Culture (ASAC). conference, Crossing Boundaries  at Florida State University in Tallahassee.early next year..  I’ll be part of a Book Session  panel headed by E. Wayne Carp author of the upcoming biography  Jean Paton and the Struggle to Reform American Adoption (University of Michigan Press, 2014).  A permanent title for the presentation will be announced in a few days, but for current informational purposes, we will be discussing the Jean Paton’s work and the book..

With me will be Elizabeth Samuels and Marianne Novy. I don’t know what their critique topics will be, but mine is “A Radical Looks at a Radical.”

… Continue Reading

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James Hamilton: An adoptive father speaks out in support of ICWA

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Jim Hamilton

A few days ago Jim Hamilton posted a comment regarding  ICWA and the Veronica Brown case under Veronica: One of the Many Multi-Heritage Children Harmed by ICWA. published on the Christian Alliance for Indian Child Welfare webpage.  The misnamed CAIW is one of the leading organizations whose mission is undermine Indian autonomy, tribal sovereignty, traffick Indian children into appropriately  white christian families, and ultimately dismantle the Indian Child Welfare Act which it claims harms Indian children.

Jim’s comment was put on “moderation” and  has never been posted. We can guess why.

With Jim’s permission I am posting it below.

I am an attorney and an international adoptive father. In my view, the ICWA does no harm whatsoever to children, including Veronica Brown/Capobianco. What does do great harm to children are those who circumvent state and federal laws in the blind pursuit of children.

I fully understand how intense the desire for a child can be and the emotional upheaval that delays in the adoption process can cause for prospective adoptive parents. My son’s adoption process in the country of his birth lasted 12 months. We met him for the first time almost 4 months after his referral and 8 months before the process was completed and we could bring him to the United States.

But, I and my wife had to be prepared at any time during that process for his mother or father to revoke their consent to the adoption and assert their right to parent the child to whom they had given life. This was not only a matter of the law, but of what was moral and ethical. We were the supplicants, not they. It was we who were required to meet with their approval, not they with ours. That is as it should be, because a child should be raised by his or her biological parent(s) where that is possible. It is not our place, as Christians or otherwise, to judge another’s fitness to parent or whether another culture affords a fit environment in which to raise a child.

  … Continue Reading

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Book Review: The Last Invisible Continent: Essays on Adoption and Identity by Michael Allen Potter. An superb and elegant mixing of the personal and the political

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Michael Allen Potter

Although I am an adoptee rights activist I seldom read adoption books outside of history or other topics I have a specific interest in. I almost always avoid memoirs. To be honest most are awful. It may be good therapy to write your adoption story, but please leave it in your desk drawer!

Michael Allen Potter’s The Last Invisible Continent: Essays on Adoption and Identity is quite a different story. I’ve been familiar with Mike’s work for several years. I knew part of his story. I knew this book would be important. I was thrilled when he emailed me a few days ago and told me the book was finished and on Kindle. I downloaded it immediately.

And holy moley! What a book it is! Unlike the typical weepy adoption memoir this one is hard and gritty. It’s of the street, but also of the heart. Mike doesn’t pull any punches about his mother’s mental illness, his battle with alcohol, or his rotten adoption, which he discusses almost in passing, though it it obviously the core of the essays.

My personal favorites are the essays “The Re-education of Michael Allen Potter” and “Checking the Bastard Box.”

In “Re-education”, Mike recounts how is mentally ill mother ends up living in a crack house–evicted from her own modest government-subsidized apartment by some rockhounds down the street who then extort her to live in the dump. Mike leaves San Francisco for a quick trip to Schenectady to return her to her rightful home. She’s ambivalent about leaving, but happy to see him. His run-in with her “landlord” (not to mention his mother’s reaction to his arrival) is both scary and funny. What strikes me most, though, is Mike’s respect for her illness. He doesn’t treat her like she’s crazy. Ever. He watches out for her in person and from afar, yet respects her independence and choices, even while he worries. Much to Mike’s surprise and relief he manages to scare the shit out of her crack dealer tormentors who end up towing his line.

“Checking the Bastard Box” examines the “fake Mike” the adoptee without his records or roots.

The essay opens thus:

When I arrived in San Francisco, late in the summer of 1996, I had someone else’s name. In my bags were packed photographs of someone else’s family and every form of ID that I brought with me was fake; my driver’s licence, all of the credit cards that helped to propel me across the continent, my birth certificate, my Social Security and ATM cards. All fraudulent. My medical records contain no information. My blood type has never been recorded. The person whose name appeared in thick block lettering on my English degree was just as fictitious as the Pucks and Oberons of my undergraduate studies.
… Continue Reading

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new! Bastard Nation Analysis and Endorsement of the Adoptee Citizenship Act 2015

new!  Bastard Nation Analysis and Endorsement of the Adoptee Citizenship Act 2015

Stop deporting our brothers and sisters!

Bastard Nation Executive Committee and LegCom page

Bastard Nation Executive Committee and LegCom page

Read about Bastard Nation leadership

THE BASTARD BOUTIQUE IS NOW OPEN! STOCK UP ON BASTARD SWAG FOR YOURSELF, YOUR FRIENDS. GIVE THE GIFT OF BASTARDY TO ANYONE, ANY TIME, ANY WHERE.

THE BASTARD BOUTIQUE IS NOW OPEN!  STOCK UP ON BASTARD SWAG FOR YOURSELF, YOUR FRIENDS. GIVE THE GIFT OF BASTARDY TO ANYONE, ANY TIME, ANY WHERE.

Your one-stop shopping for everything Bastard is now live. You can get our latest Bastard Nation swag at the Bastard Boutique. Quantities are limited! -- CLICK THE PIC!

FACEBOOK OFFICIAL BN PAGE

FACEBOOK OFFICIAL BN PAGE

Join us on the Official Bastard Nation Facebook page. The only "adoption" page on Facebook dedicated to discussion and promotion of adoptee autonomy, civil rights, bastard theory, political organizing, and activism. You can also sign up there for our BN mail list which includes all of our Action Alerts. This is not a search and support page. No Woundies need apply! (Page live on July 1, 2015)

FACEBOOK SOCIAL BN PAGE

FACEBOOK SOCIAL BN PAGE

Join the Bastard Nation Public Page, a public service for Bastard Nationals, friends and supporters. General discussion on adoptee rights and related issues.

TWITTER

TWITTER

Join us on Twitter. All the Bastardly news fit to tweet!

PINTEREST

PINTEREST

Join us on Pinterest. Bastard icons, images, members, actions, politics, and fun. And Christopher Walken!

Become a Bastard Nation Legislative Liaison!

Become a Bastard Nation Legislative Liaison!

Bastard Nation needs Legislative Liaisons in every state with laws that seal adoption records. We need eyes and ears in the legislatures, creating relationships and gathering information.

What does a BN Legislative Liaison do? They talk with lawmakers and their staff about adoptee rights and the laws that seal records. They distribute Bastard Nation position papers and FAQs to legislators and staff members. They record their conversations and report to the BN Legislative Committee.

They are organized, informed, friendly, helpful, and engaged.

What do you need to do to be a BN Legislative Liaison?

1. You need to live close to the capitol of your state.
2. You need to be able to appear friendly, even when talking with people who disagree with you or are just disagreeable, period.
3. You need to have a flexible schedule.
4. You need to agree with Bastard Nation’s mission: If you don’t know what that is, go to bastardnation.org, it’s right there on our welcome page.

Those are the prerequisites. If you are interested, click the picture of the capitol rotunda, and fill out the application form. We will be in touch and schedule an online orientation and training.

We look forward to working with you!

Read what real live adoptees have to say about secret adoption and sealed records....A service of Bastard Nation and Emma Pea! Fighting adoptacrats since 1996.

Hit the pic for archives.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: Meet Sharley!

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT:  Meet Sharley!

Bastard Nation Moms Club

Bastard Nation Moms Club

Bastard Nation is gathering the names of moms who are willing to step forward and say that they were never promised confidentiality. If you are willing to participate, please comment this status. Your name (and if you choose, the relinquishment date) will be added to a list used in newspaper ads and to educate legislators.

Bastard Nation Action Alerts (from old BN page)

Bastardly Books by Bastards and Friends

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Recent Comments

bastard-chronicles

bastard-chronicles

Help us celebrate 20 years of bastardy! Bastard Nation is proud to announce the publication of "The Bastard Chronicles: 20 Years of Adoptee Equality Activism in the U.S.and the Birth of a Bastard Nation", Compiled and edited by Marla Paul, "The Bastard Chronicles" is primer for adoptee equality. It features a diverse collection of Bastard theory, and practice, Bastard and Bastard Nation history, legislative and political action, personal stories, art, and literature. It is the public face of Class Bastard written by Bastard Nationals and those we have influenced. Get yours in time for the holidays. Available at Amazon in print and Kindle today. (After the first of the year the print edition will also be available through the Bastard Boutique.

Bastards! Our Bastard Nation Logo T-shirts are now in the boutique! Show the world that we have no shame. Wear it proudly and represent!

Bastards! Our Bastard Nation Logo T-shirts are now in the boutique! Show the world that we have no shame. Wear it proudly and represent!

We also found a stash of our vintage BN logo keychains. There are only 10 left, so order yours! When they're gone, they're gone! Click he pic!

Join Bastard Nation!

Join Bastard Nation!

This summer we are updating our membership/donation page and payment process. If you would like to join or donate, please hit the spemrie. It will take you to our Bastard Boutique page. Follow instructions from there. Be sure to include a quick note with your contact information and anything else you'd like us us know..

My, my it’s American Bastard Pie! (design by Lisa Zatonsky)

My, my it’s American  Bastard Pie! (design by Lisa Zatonsky)

See our state partners:

See our state partners:

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: CalOpen

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: CalOpen

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Indiana Open Access

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Indiana Open Access

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Michigan Open Access

Proud Bastard Nation Partner:  Michigan Open Access

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Missouri Open

Proud Bastard Nation Partner:  Missouri Open

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Equal Access Oklahoma

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Equal Access Oklahoma

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Open Adoption Records in Quebec

Proud Bastard Nation Partner: Open Adoption Records in Quebec

SAMPLE STATE ORGANIZATION RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

SAMPLE STATE ORGANIZATION RESOLUTION AGAINST VETOES AND OTHER RESTRICTIONS

Any political organization seeking to enact true open records legislation should be very clear with both their constituents and the legislators they work with about what the essential provisions of the proposed bill are. Any modification or deletion of the essential provisions of a bill should be immediate cause to have the bill killed.

Any political organization seeking the assistance of Bastard Nation to pass open records legislation must hold unconditional access by adult adoptees to the original record of their birth as an essential provision that cannot be modified or deleted. Read our Mission Statement.

Bastard Nation will not assist any political organization to pass open records legislation unless their governing board or other leadership

passes a written resolution such as the following that commits the board to a strategy of no compromise on key provisions
informs its constituents of this commitment and this strategy
informs the sponsoring legislators of this commitment and this strategy.

WHEREAS we recognize that disclosure and contact vetoes, redactions, mandatory intermediaries and registry provisions are an affront to the dignity of adopted persons everywhere and a violation of their right to due process and equal treatment under the law,

WHEREAS there has been a demonstrable negative effect on the ability to pass unconditional open records in states that have passed veto legislation and/or any provisions that are less than unconditional access on demand by the adult adoptee,

WHEREAS our primary goal is to restore the right of adult adoptees everywhere to be treated as full citizens under the law,

WE HEREBY DECLARE that under no circumstances will we accept the addition of veto, redaction, intermediary, or registry provisions, or any conditional provisions to our legislation that would be less than unconditional access for adult adoptees to the original record of their birth. All legislative sponsors and members of this organization will be informed of our policy on this matter to ensure that the bill is pulled promptly in the event of such revisions.

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