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Lost Children Book Series

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Academics FINALLY writing about Native Adoptees!

Prof. Karen Tani Writes About “Remembering the ‘Forgotten Child’” in Light of Adoptive Couple at Jotwell

Here.
These revelations are sure to disturb any reader, but the point of Jacobs’s important article is not to expose adoption proponents as disingenuous or malevolent. It is to place an ongoing phenomenon—Indian children’s disproportionately high rate of separation from their families—in proper historical context. (P. 154.) “It is no coincidence,” Jacobs writes, “that the IAP arose during the era in which the federal government promoted termination [of tribal nations’ special status] and relocation policies for American Indians.” (P. 152.) Adoptions enabled the federal government to terminate its responsibilities, child by child, by shifting them to “the ultimate ‘private’ sector.” (P.154.) By extension, Jacobs argues, adoptive families also advanced the government’s long-term “effort[] to eliminate Indianness.” (P. 154.) This, Jacobs demonstrates, was the backdrop for the ICWA. When tribal leaders and advocacy organizations convinced Congress to enact the new law, it was a small victory in a long war. And when plaintiffs invoke the ICWA today, they raise a hard-won shield.
We agree that Margaret D. Jacobs “Remembering the ‘Forgotten Child’: The American Indian Child Welfare Crisis of the 1960s and 1970s” 37 American Indian Quarterly 136 (2013) is an excellent and important article.
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From Trace:

Trace's well-worn copy of Jacob's Book
I read Jacob's article and I agree - it's fantastic!
When I was a speaker at the Western New England Law School last month, Laura Briggs, author of Somebody's Child, the Politics of Transracial and Transnational Adoption, told me that Margaret Jacobs is writing a new book, a follow-up to White Mother to A Dark Race (photo at right).
It occurs to me and to many other adoptees that HISTORIC CHANGE is on the wind - finally. Academia is studying our history. When academics like Briggs and Jacobs are writing the history about tribal adoptions and ICWA, courts and others in academia will read up and pay attention. Indian Country needs this to happen.
So far I have 33 contributors to the new Native adoptee anthology CALLED HOME: Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects, my third book on this history. Since we adoptees are living the story, we are telling it our way. I understand a Missouri graduate program in sociology is using my memoir One Small Sacrifice as a teaching tool.
Change comes in small tiny steps. We are finally seeing it happen.
As I have said on this blog: THE ONLY WAY WE CAN CHANGE HISTORY IS TO WRITE IT OURSELVES. And the truth shall FINALLY set us free....

Thank you so much for reading this blog. I thank you with all my heart!

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To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

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Thought-provoking and moving 11 October 2012
Two Worlds - Lost children of the Indian Adoption Projects

If you thought that ethnic cleansing was something for the history books, think again. This work tells the stories of Native American Indian adoptees "The Lost Birds" who continue to suffer the effects of successive US and Canadian government policies on adoption; policies that were in force as recently as the 1970's. Many of the contributors still bear the scars of their separation from their ancestral roots. What becomes apparent to the reader is the reality of a racial memory that lives in the DNA of adoptees and calls to them from the past.
The editors have let the contributors tell their own stories of their childhood and search for their blood relatives, allowing the reader to gain a true impression of their personalities. What becomes apparent is that nothing is straightforward; re-assimilation brings its own cultural and emotional problems. Not all of the stories are harrowing or sad; there are a number of heart-warming successes, and not all placements amongst white families had negative consequences. But with whom should the ultimate decision of adoption reside? Government authorities or the Indian people themselves? Read Two Worlds and decide for yourself.

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ADOPTION TRUTH

As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.

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