North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, D-N.C., has issued a proclamation celebrating “Gender Expansive Parents’ Day.” Cooper signed the proclamation because Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are not “inclusive” enough and fail to recognize LGBTQ parents.
Cooper’s proclamation stated, “All parents, regardless of gestational relationship to a child, gender identity, or gender expression, deserve to be celebrated for the love and nurturing they give to their children.”
The proclamation doesn’t just recognize homosexual couples. Instead, Cooper expanded it to include all parental possibilities beyond the traditional two-parent model. He explained,
“Increasingly, many of these LGBTQ parents also exist outside a traditional gender binary…and terms like non-binary, gender expansive, and agender are used to describe a spectrum of gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine.”
“Mother’s and Father’s Day celebrations often exclude gender-expansive parents, neglecting the valuable roles they play in the lives of their children. Becoming a more inclusive state will require…making the lived experiences of LGBTQ+ people more visible. This proclamation does that.”
Cooper’s proclamation celebrating “Gender-Expansive Parent’s Day” states:
“Recognition of the work and sacrifice of non-binary, agender, and other gender expansive parents, as well as that of other non-traditional primary caregivers, is key to our efforts to create a more inclusive State…. The State of North Carolina recognizes any supportive relationship that a child has with their parent and honors gender expansive parents.”
In his proclamation, Cooper claimed that at least 2 million children, including 400,000 foster children, have at least one parent who identifies as LGBTQ. Cooper also somewhat incongruously cited a statistic asserting that LGBTQ parents are six times more likely to foster children and four times more likely to adopt children than anyone else.
The statistic’s inclusion seems to be Cooper’s attempt at extolling what wonderful parents LGBTQ couples make because they foster and adopt more often than do heterosexual parents. The other side of that statistic is that LGBTQ parents foster and adopt more because they are unable to have children biologically, making foster care and adoption the logical choice if they want to raise children.
Alston’s request to recognize LGBTQ parents is reflected in Cooper’s proclamation, which states,
“Parenting for those who do not identify as mothers or fathers can be isolating due to lack of public parenting communities, adequate parenting support systems, healthcare disparities, and legal discrimination in adoption and child custody.”
The alleged discrimination likely refers to faith-based adoption agencies that refuse to place children with LGBTQ couples. This has of late been a hotly contested issue around the country.
Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League, shared sharp criticism of Cooper’s order.
“It teaches that same-sex marriage, same-sex romance, is just as moral and healthy as heterosexual behavior — something that doesn’t match the science or our culture’s experience, no matter what’s said to the contrary,” he stated. “It asserts that same-sex marriage and same-sex parenting is just as moral and beneficial as natural marriage and natural parenting, which is a dangerous lie.”
Creech continued his criticism by explaining that Cooper’s proclamation
“declares a mother or a father offers nothing uniquely beneficial to the care and development of a child. Same-sex parenting purposely denies a child either a mother or a father. Moms and Dads are not interchangeable. And finally, it alleges that marriage has nothing to do with procreation. It’s just coupling, and so, if you want to have children, it’s not imperative to get married.”
Finally, Creech warned,
“These false concepts are all bound up in that Proclamation, which is a form of cultural heresy that works to undermine the nation’s core strength — the character of the family.”
For those keeping score, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are now offensive if not including a third option (or fourth, fifth, ninth…) Being “inclusive” has become the highest goal of our society, even if it is detrimental to the long-term health and stability of that society. Terms like “gender expansive” are used because even in a proclamation celebrating LGBTQ parents a leader like Cooper is afraid of somehow leaving out one of the litanies of genders and being labeled a bigot or, just as bad, “exclusive.”
Our culture has unmoored itself from any objective standard, making every idea and every lifestyle equally valid. Once our society proclaimed marriage was no longer between a man and a woman and that there were more than two genders, there was no stopping the ever-expanding list of genders and new norms. Creech is right in that moms and dads are not interchangeable. As Dr. David Popenoe wrote of the importance of fathers, “Fathers are far more than just ‘second adults’ in the home. Involved fathers — especially biological fathers — bring positive benefits to their children that no other person is as likely to bring. They provide protection and economic support and male role models. They have a parenting style that is significantly different from that of a mother and that difference is important in healthy child development.”
Mothers and fathers bring different ways of parenting to a child. By now the statistics are common knowledge: Children who do not have a mother and a father are more likely to suffer many harms. God designed the family. He knows how it works best — not two moms or two dads or whatever other grouping our society invents, but one father and one mother complimenting each other and raising well-rounded and well-adjusted children.