Friday, November 04, 2005

Brave New Washington

One of the most accurate headlines ever to appear in the Seattle Times:

Court redefines parenthood

To be a menage a trois:

The Washington Supreme Court established what amounts to a new category of parents — one that's the legal equivalent of moms and dads — when it ruled Thursday that a lesbian who was neither the biological nor adoptive parent of a girl she helped raise has co-parenting rights to the child.

....In the 7-2 decision hailed by gays as an acknowledgement of the complexity of families, the court recognized what it called a "de-facto or psychological parent" under the state's common law as one who "in all respect functions as the child's actual parent."

....Writing for the majority, Justice Bobbe J. Bridge said, "In the face of advancing technologies and evolving notions of what comprises a family unit, this case causes us to confront the manner in which our state ... defines the terms 'parents' and 'families.' "

She said neither the U.S. nor state Supreme Court has ever restricted the definition of parent or family by biology. "Today we hold that our common law recognizes the status of de-facto parents and places them in parity with biological and adoptive parents in our state," she wrote.

We say 'threesome', because the biological mother married the biological father and was living with him and their daughter, apparently after rejecting her lesbian relationship with the woman who has now been ruled to be a 'de-facto parent'.

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