One of the hottest news stories in Britain was a decision by a local government unit to take away foster children from members of the UK Independence Party on the grounds that the adoptive parents were ipso facto 'racist'.
The decision by Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council has provoked widespread criticism, with campaigners representing foster parents describing the decision as “ridiculous” and warning that it could deter other prospective foster parents from volunteering.
But Joyce Thacker, the council's Director of Children and Young People's Services, today said the three ethnic minority children had been placed with the couple as an emergency and the arrangement was never going to be long-term.
She told the BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "We always try to place children in a sensible cultural placement. These children are not UK children and we were not aware of the foster parents having strong political views.
"There are some strong views in the Ukip party and we have to think of the future of the children."
Here's the lady from the council expressing her deep concern. Nigel Farage of UKIP was interviewed by a radio station to give his views. Note how the radio interviewer argues that for Farage to object is "to politicize" it.
This follows the 2011 case in which an elderly black couple were told they could not be adoptive parents because they refused to undertake to instruct their children that a gay lifestyle was acceptable.
The couple took their case to the British High Court and lost. The Guardian reports "the judges in their ruling said they were not ruling against beliefs but against the discriminatory effects of those beliefs and that one set of beliefs could not take precedence in a pluralist society."
Derby city council said it had never taken a view on the Johns' application, adding: "It would be inappropriate for the council to approve foster carers who cannot meet minimum standards. It would be difficult and impractical to match children with Mr and Mrs Johns if they feel that strongly."
Ben Summerskill, chief executive of the gay rights' charity Stonewall, said: "In any fostering case the interests of the 60,000 children in care should override the bias of any prospective parent. If you wish to be involved in the delivery of a public service you should be prepared to provide it fairly to anyone."
Yes it's all about "the children" and their welfare. Understanding what is best for children requires a certain sensibility. It is not always obvious. Recently European authorities have considered banning facilities which accept abandoned babies.
BERLIN (AP) — German pastor Gabriele Stangl says she will never forget the harrowing confession she heard in 1999. A woman said she had been brutally raped, got pregnant and had a baby. Then she killed it and buried it in the woods near Berlin.
Stangl wanted to do something to help women in such desperate situations. So the following year, she convinced Berlin's Waldfriede Hospital to create the city's first so-called "baby box." The box is actually a warm incubator that can be opened from an outside wall of a hospital where a desperate parent can anonymously leave an unwanted infant...
But they have drawn the attention of human rights advocates who think they are bad for the children and merely avoid dealing with the problems that lead to child abandonment. At a meeting last month, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child said baby boxes should be banned and is pushing that agenda to the European Parliament.
Now you would think it is preferable to be alive than to be dead. But what do we know? It's much better to abort the baby. That is so much more progressive.
In many ways the council lady could not expose herself to the liability of allowing children to grow up with monstrous bigots. You, reading these lines are probably a monstrous bigot. Can't you smell the stench rising from yourself? When did people start discovering they were criminals? Quite suddenly, but decisively.
One morning, as Gregor Samsa was waking up from anxious dreams, he discovered that in his bed he had been changed into a monstrous verminous bug. He lay on his armour-hard back and saw, as he lifted his head up a little, his brown, arched abdomen divided up into rigid bow-like sections. From this height the blanket, just about ready to slide off completely, could hardly stay in place. His numerous legs, pitifully thin in comparison to the rest of his circumference, flickered helplessly before his eyes.
“What’s happened to me,” he thought. It was no dream. His room, a proper room for a human being, only somewhat too small, lay quietly between the four well-known walls. Above the table, on which an unpacked collection of sample cloth goods was spread out—Samsa was a travelling salesman—hung the picture which he had cut out of an illustrated magazine a little while ago and set in a pretty gilt frame. It was a picture of a woman with a fur hat and a fur boa. She sat erect there, lifting up in the direction of the viewer a solid fur muff into which her entire forearm had disappeared.
But there's hope. And the possibility of change and salvation too, though one must apologize for using outdated bigoted terminology. All one has to do is get with the program.