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Preachers protest adoption ruling
Conservative preachers upheld stereotypes that were refuted in trial
By JUAN CARLOS RODRIGUEZ, South Florida Blade | Dec 4, 2:11 PM
A group of conservative preachers representing the Christian Coalition said they support removing adopted children of gay parents from stable homes, rather than let a ruling stand that overturns the Florida’s anti-gay adoption law.
The group, led by Rev. Paul Carbalho, held a press conference at the Wayside Baptist Church in Kendall Wednesday to protest Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Cindy Lederman’s ruling that favored Frank Martin Gill, a gay man from North Miami who petitioned to adopt two half brothers he fostered since 2004.
In a 53-page decision, Lederman said that there is no rational basis for the 30-year-old law, known to be the most restrictive adoption law in the nation.
The Florida Attorney General’s office filed notice to appeal Lederman’s ruling.
Carbalho was joined by the leaders of three other churches including Nathaniel Wilcox, among the most vociferous anti-gay agitators in Miami-Dade County.
“We would like the adoption law to stay in position,” Carbalho said. “We don’t want to experiment with children, and [Gill’s family] is an experimental family.”
In support of their position, the conservative preachers upheld many of the same homophobic stereotypes that were refuted in the trial, including suggestions that gay people are likely to be pedophiles.
When asked whether the group supported removing Gill’s children from his home, Carbalho said that he would support placing them in the homes of straight parents regardless of the fact that Lederman and eight expert witnesses from across the nation agreed that it was in the children’s best interest to remain with Gill.
The appeal has yet to be assigned a judge or a trial according to the clerk of Florida’s Third Court of Appeal in Miami.