15 May 2008

Tories' Attack On Lesbian Parents

"I can't believe we've gone back to this. Gay men and lesbians have...
fought for their rights to be treated exactly the same way as straight people for decades and yet there are still those who want to dress up their prejudices in the guise of caring about children (Bar lesbians from IVF treatment in absence of father figures, say Tories, May 13). When David Cameron wants to address the breakdown of families, is he really talking about a few lesbian couples who are bringing up their children without a father, or the thousands or millions of heterosexual mothers who are bringing up their children without their fathers?

Heterosexual women can and do have children from the age of 12 upwards and somehow that is still seen as preferable to two more mature women going through months or years and a huge financial commitment to have a baby. There are no accidental births with lesbians, so where does that fit with Cameron's preconceptions about what good parenting is? I don't know a single lesbian couple with children who haven't given huge amounts of thought to, first, the decision to have children, and, second, the best way to make sure that all of the child's needs are covered, including the need for men around.

It would be impossible to bring a child into this world without it having both male and female influences. The children of lesbians do not go to schools with no male teachers; their mums' friends are not all women; their mums have brothers and fathers. How about teaching young men about the responsibilities of becoming a father rather than attacking easy targets who are perfectly capable of bringing up well-rounded, balanced children?"
Sally Mayor

I couldn't have put this any better, which is why I reproduce this letter in yesterday's Guardian in full.

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