03/15/2013 12:15 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

National Organization for Marriage: Adoption Is a "Second-Best" Option

John Eastman, chairman of the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage, shockingly and patronizingly denigrated adoption in an interview with the Associated Press, calling it the "second-best option" for families.

Eastman wasn't discussing adoption by same-sex couples, but adoption by married opposite-sex couples -- and he wasn't smearing just any adoptive family, but the family of the Chief Justice of the United States, John G. Roberts. Incredibly, Eastman made the offensive comments even as he arrogantly predicted that Roberts would vote to preserve marriage discrimination.

The AP article points out that the nine Supreme Court justices have very diverse family lives -- there are unmarried justices, once-married justices, twice-married justices, justices with children, justices without children, justices with biological children, and justices with adopted children. Reporter Mark Sherman interviewed Andrew Cherlin, a Johns Hopkins University sociologist who studies families and public policy, who said that the justices' diverse family compositions may change the way they rule on marriage equality cases.

Eastman's response:

Gay marriage opponents said they are not worried about the votes of Roberts and Thomas.

"You're looking at what is the best course societywide to get you the optimal result in the widest variety of cases. That often is not open to people in individual cases. Certainly adoption in families headed, like Chief Roberts' family is, by a heterosexual couple, is by far the second-best option," said John Eastman, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage. Eastman also teaches law at Chapman University law school in Orange, Calif. [Emphasis mine]

Chief Justice Roberts and his wife Jane are the parents of two 12-year-old children, Jack and Josie, whom they adopted as babies in 2000.

The so-called "National Organization for Marriage" is apparently so desperate to degrade same-sex couples and their families that they're willing to stigmatize any family that doesn't fit into the mold they've arbitrarily chosen as their ideal. NOM is essentially saying to children who aren't being raised by the parents from whose loins they sprang, and to parents who've built their families through any method other than procreative, heterosexual, post-marital sex, that their families are inferior, sub-standard, "second-best."

In my view, Eastman's comments are especially vile given the well-known fact that many adopted children struggle with feeling unwanted and unloved. His ugly words strike right at the heart of that vulnerability. What a disgusting slap in the face to those kids and to the loving parents -- straight or gay -- who welcome them into their families. Shame.