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Homosexual Parenting

             The last decade has seen a dramatic increase in homosexuals planning and forming families. However, lesbian and gay parents face many social and legal obstacles. It is almost impossible for a person to be openly gay and raise a child. Now, though, many factors contribute to the fact that homosexuals should be allowed to parent children. Let us evaluate the courts' approach to granting custody, visitation rights, and adoptions to gays and lesbians, examine why homosexuals should be allowed to parent, and the truth and benefits behind gay and lesbian parenting. .
             First let us evaluate the courts' approach to disputes involving homosexual parents. The sexual orientation of a parent is often used to incite prejudice "to suggest myths and stereotypes about homosexual parents in order to provoke a denial of visitation or custody according to www.lambdalegal.org. When confronted with lesbian and gay parenting cases, the majority of courts have adopted a "nexus approach,"" requiring a clear demonstration that the parent's sexual orientation actually causes harm to a child before it is deemed relevant. Under this approach, the child's best interest becomes the main focus of the case, as it should be. It should be mandatory in all states that when a custody, visitation, or adoption dispute is brought, the best interest of the child should come first, not the sexual choice of the parent. The right of a child to be raised in a loving and emotionally healthy home should not depend on the sexual orientation of the parent. Some variant of the nexus standard has been adopted in 29 states; however, the District of Columbia is currently the only jurisdiction in the country that has an explicit law guaranteeing that sexual orientation by itself cannot be used as a factor in determining custody or visitation. This means that many states still award custody to the "straight- parent instead of examining which parent would provide the best care for the child.

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