Can you imagine the cacophany of noise if every woman who had a child taken during the Baby Scoop Era were to honk her car horn in concert with all the others? They would hear the noise on the space station.
This is the biggest group of mothers who had children taken for adoption from the same time frame in the US, and so many are still sleeping the sleep of denial, believing they "had a choice" and "made a decision." But I am wondering if more would come out of their "good beemommy" closets if the BSE received the attention it deserves. We are talking millions, here. If it had caused deaths (and in a few cases, it did), it would have been called genocide. A few hundred moms might make a difference, but think about the combined energies of a few million mothers, awake and aware that they got exploited, screwed and robbed big time.
When we talk about needing numbers to make change, I cannot help but think of all those mothers who just need some gentle shaking and the cold water of truth on their faces. If the issues of the BSE go public, some of these women...hopefully, a lot of these women...may wake up and want to join in the fight. With this many angry mothers, attention would then segue to the mothers who came after us. People will start wondering if the "old days" are really gone. From the numbers of younger mothers who have joined the various activist groups, I think the only thing that has really changed is the number of women affected by the industry.
No one wants to leave out any mothers that have been hurt by the adoption machine. It hurts, just as much, to have lost your baby to adoption in 1993 as it did in 1963. There were still isolated pockets of shaming and blaming and appalled parents and frightened, pregnant young women after the early 70's. Seeking justice for the BSE will mean a good chance of a re-examination of the entire system and justice for all mothers from all time periods.
I am a big believer in doing things for mothers of today, preserving and protecting the natural family and reducing the number of adoptions....especially those of infants. BUT, I think we have to have a starting point and for that, we have to look backwards and study our history to find out why adoption is so powerful in this country, today. The BSE, like the era of Jim Crow laws, is a historical reality, it happened and it had millions of casualties in the mothers and children who were separated by the repressive, judgmental mores of that time.
Seeking justice for past crimes is nothing new and it is not regressing nor refusing to move forward with our lives. Many of us have done just that and moved forward, in the case of some of us, with steely resolve. Living in the past is not what this is about. Learning from the past and using the excesses and oppressions of that evil time to put the Man on the spot is what it is about and what it will always be about. I only hope to see this in my lifetime and time is growing short. I have been blessed with great-grandchildren and I want them to know that their "Big Mama" fought the good fight for their future.
Those sands in the hourglass run a bit faster as you get older. I would love vindication and acknowledgement to be part of the rewards of my "golden years." I think my sciatica and arthritis would hurt a lot less. I know it would do my heart immeasurable good.