Thank the good lord above, the great state of Arkansas has finally outlawed the practice of "rehoming" adopted children -- that is, just handing off your adopted kids to someone else to raise and hoping for the best, a practice that didn't turn out so well for state Rep. Justin Harris when one of the two girls he rehomed with a family friend was raped in 2014. Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed the bill into law Monday, making Arkansas one of only three states to ban rehoming -- the other two are Louisiana and Wisconsin; Florida and Illinois are also considering legislation to restrict or outlaw rehoming.


The new law forbids parents from turning custody of adopted children over to any other household without court permission, except when kids are placed with close relatives. Rep. Harris had supported the bill as it was fast-tracked through the legislature, but he has so far not volunteered to submit to an ex post facto prosecution under its provisions (sure, that would be illegal, but it would show he's sincere).

As you may recall, Harris claimed that he really, really tried to provide a good home to the girls, ages three and five, when they were adopted in the spring of 2013, but according to Harris, the oldest child was so dangerously mental due to her past sexual abuse that his family had no choice but to get the girls out of his home, for the safety of his own children. Harris has claimed that the state Department of Human Services (DHS) threatened to prosecute him for child abandonment if he sent the girls back to DHS, so he shipped them off to the home of family friends Eric and Stacey Francis in October 2013. Eric Francis was arrested in April 2014 for raping the older girl, and is now serving a 40-year sentence in prison, but Harris's connection to the victims was not revealed until this year.

In any case, it's all over now. That barn door is good and locked, and Justin Harris is still a member of the Arkansas House of Representatives, because nothing he did at the time was illegal. And now he can get back to the serious job of being a Family Values legislator, advocating for smaller government, and running a Christian daycare that gets most of its funding from state and federal programs.

More importantly, the girls are now living in an adoptive home where they aren't locked up in an empty room because they're suspected of being possessed by demons, and where they don't have to worry that they'll be handed off to another rapist. They'll probably be OK -- for some relative value of "OK" -- though it would be nice if somehow a gay wedding had been involved in this story, because they probably could benefit from a few hundred thousand dollars' worth of therapy.

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[HuffPo]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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