Friday, November 23, 2007
Adopt An Opinion
I've been holding a few posts back. You know how an idea pops into your head and you don't have time to sit down and really think it through? No? Well, it stinks. It just sits there as you work on other projects until finally you get a few minutes before going to sleep months later and can blog about it. The thought that has been waiting its time patiently is about adoption. Feel free to look at the Wikipedia definition.
You see, I find the word to be a strong indicator of how one feels about responsibility. Some people use the phrase at the drop of a hat. Adopt a highway, adopt a classroom, adopt a platoon, adopt a rainforest, adopt a stream, adopt a college... heck, there are tons of these that actually have Web sites. But most of these programs are essentially not an honest undertaking of responsibility for the said item but to help and assist. So, the idea of animal adoption tops my list of this phenomena.
I started thinking about it when we had the Ellen DeGeneres' pet adoption issues in the media. You see, we tend to humanize things. Granted, a pet is supposed to become a member of the family and warrants more scrutiny than a highway, classroom, platoon, rainforest, stream or college. Many of these animal adoption agencies take it just as seriously as placing a child. And a child is the first thing the Wiki-definition intones. I know, someone out there is already saying, "Martin, my Fido is my baby." That may be true. But in the DeGeneres situation, she gave a baby that she was screened for to a family that wasn't. These animal adoption agencies take it very seriously and if it were a child, someone would be fined or possibly arrested if the process didn't involve a lawyer and the family court system. I personally know someone starting an agency and many of these animals have been abused mentally and/or physically and a specific home is usually selected to help overcome those hurdles to give it the best life possible.
I believe DeGeneres' tears over the situation were real. I believe she has learned that she made a mistake that has hurt more than one family and given people something to think about when it comes to 'adoption.' Let us hope that other people start to take the term more seriously.