A Republican lawmaker from New Jersey
told high school students that children would be better off in
orphanages than with same-sex parents.
Blade first posted audio of New Jersey Representative Chris
Smith's May 29 remarks to students at Colts Neck High School.
When Hannah Valdes, a senior, asked
Smith about gay adoption, the lawmaker said that the issue is moot
because of the “Supreme Court decision,” a possible reference to
the high court's landmark 2015 ruling striking down state bans that
excluded gay and lesbian couples from marriage.
The student pressed Smith, asking him
why he believes her gay sister shouldn't be allowed to adopt.
“[T]here are many others who would
like to adopt who can acquire a child,” Smith responded.
Another student asked what makes these
“others” more qualified to adopt than Valdes' sister. To which
Smith answered: “Somebody mentioned orphanages before. I mean,
orphanages are still a possibility for some kids.”
Valdes told the Blade that
Smith, who in 1999 voted in favor of a bill that sought to bar gay
couples from adoption, was also asked about his views on gay adoption
in an exchange not included in the recording.
“Rep. Smith responded by saying that
he does not approve of gay adoption because gay households are not
healthy environments for children to grow up in,” Valdes said. “He
then stated that 'numerous household studies' show that children that
have heterosexual parents have better lives than children that have
Children raised by gay couples healthier, happier than general
Valdes said that when administrators
failed to change the subject, they ended the assembly and sent the
students back to their classes.