During the month of November 2008, the people of Arkansas voted for the passage of Arkansas Law Act 1, which prohibits any unmarried individuals or couples from adopting children. In part, many contend that this law passed as an attempt to keep homosexuals from adopting children. Critics of this law state that it is a political ploy at the expense of Arkansas children waiting to be adopted. This law also includes foster children. Any individuals living in cohabitation outside of a valid marriage are not permitted by law to adopt or serve as foster parents. The argument is that children function best in a “traditional” family environment between a man and a woman. Academics do not dispute this; however, they do contend there is a violation of the 9th amendment. Moreover, some sociologists have stated that the evidence of a “family” unit between a man and a women is not supported. Thus, this matter becomes one of religious faith and belief — making it a 1st amendment issue, too.
As noted in other landmark cases such as Griswold v. Connecticut and Roe v. Wade, the court stated that both venues were in fact legal as thus they address matters of privacy. The matter of privacy is a significant one. There was a point in which states declared by law that one had to be of a certain age to purchase contraceptives such as a condom or diaphragm. This is no longer the case with the rise of AIDS.
After being challenged by the ACLU, a judge has ruled against this law in Arkansas; many state it is a law clearly driven by ideological and political motives, thus serves no purpose for the welfare of children. But, those that collected enough signatures to have this law placed on the ballot via initiative, contend that research backs their basic contention of family stability. Conversely, opponents of this act noted that it is not about family stability; it is anti-gay. Hence, research does not support same-sex couples having an adverse impact on children. Furthermore, as some have stated, Act 1 is in opposition to matters of abortion, as stated by some in the state of Arkansas. On one hand, 57% of the population ruled in favor of Arkansas Law Act 1. On the other hand, many within that same population argue that women should not seek an abortion, but simply but their child up for adoption.