A judge in Iowa has ordered new birth documents be issued to the child of a lesbian couple who were initially told they couldn't list both of their names on their baby's birth certificate. The Iowa Department of Public Health contended that God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, but was roundly rebuked for trying to pass redneck bumper stickers off as sound public policy.
The married couple, Melissa and Heather Garter, had a baby via anonymous artificial insemination back in 2009. Heather carried the child and Melissa was present for their daughter's birth. The state, however, refused to list Melissa as the child's parent on the birth certificate, even though straight couples who conceive via anonymous sperm donation are allowed to list the non-biological parent husband as the child's father.
The Department of Health argued that it was "biologically impossible" for a woman to establish paternity of a child, because the biological role of child-creation is heavily gendered. Ladies can wear hard hats and pants and stuff, in other words, but they can't be "fathers" on a birth certificate, because that's just crazy talk.
District Judge Eliza Ovrom awesomely disagreed, though, writing in her 12-page ruling that because same sex marriage is legal in Iowa, all institutions in the state must afford married same sex couples the same rights given to married heterosexual couples, and that includes the right to list both parents on a baby's birth certificate. Her ruling also exempted people in same sex marriages from having to go through an adoption process after their partner who carried a child gives birth.
Too bad this happened too late to give Iowa caucus silver medalist and well-known gay disliker Rick Santorum a chance to be asked about it on the campaign trail. Would he have broken down into tears and wept, for the families that this was ruining? Pulled off a rubber mask to reveal that he's actually the Pope in disguise? He woulda gotten away with it, too, if not for you meddling gays!
The Iowa Department of Public Health is considering appealing the ruling, because this taxpayer money isn't going to spend itself.
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