A few months ago, my 3 year old daughter and I were shopping at the dollar store, when a lady commented to me that she was disgusted all of the products in the store seemed to be made in China. At first, I hardly knew how to react; stunned that she would say such a thing in front of my adopted Chinese daughter. After a moment, I replied with a smile, “Yes, isn’t it great? You know, my daughter was also made in China. We adopted her from there.”
“Why not adopt an American child? There must be plenty in need right here in this country,” she countered.
“Yes, you are quite right about that. Unfortunately, for adoptive parents, there are many laws in the United States, which protect biological parents and give them rights that might one day jeopardize an adoption. My husband and I didn’t want to risk getting attached to a child, only to have that child returned to a biological parent. With a Chinese adoption, that is not a factor,” I explained.
“Oh, I see. I just have a problem with our US workers losing their jobs to the Chinese. My son-in-law just lost his job for that very reason,” she challenged.
“I am so sorry to hear that. Losing a job is such a hardship, regardless of nationality. It is my wish that no American or Chinese or anyone, for that matter, should have to go through that devastation,” I sympathetically answered, as the frustrated woman moved further down the aisle.
It saddened me in that moment to realize that Americans often seem to sacrifice their humanity for their patriotism. I believe that nationality should not be a factor when determining whether a person is deserving of a job, home, or even a family. I believe we all deserve those things, just by being members of the human race.
When my husband and I adopted our daughter, we did not think of her as a Chinese child. We only thought of her as an innocent child in need, who could fill our need to grow our family. It never occurred to us to think that she may not be as good as an American child. Despite our society’s labels of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, or religion, I believe we have more similarities than we do differences. I have learned that whatever I focus on increases. Today I choose to focus on the ways I am similar to my fellow human beings, in hopes that our ties to one another will increase. I believe this is the first step in building a united and peaceful world for my daughter and all of mankind’s children.
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