Thursday, April 22, 2010


Rep. Sara Feigenholz (D-Chicago) and her buddies' performance of deceit in Springfield has resulted in the most horrid bill possible lying on Governor Quinn's desk for his signature. They call it adoption reform when in fact it is distort.

Granted there will be a group of adoptees born prior to 1/1/46 who will be able to receive their original birth certificate with no strings attached. But God pity those born on or after this date.

Termination of rights in Illinois now means that birth parents can choose anonymity. It does not matter that years ago a court order severed the legal relationship between parent and child. The child could be 60 years old now but a birth parent(s) can prevent him or her from having their original birth certificate. Oops, maybe they will receive one with birth parent identifying information redacted. One wonders how a notary would feel if they knew years later that a legal document notorized by them would be revised. I guess legal just has a different meaning in IL and one of these days money will be spent to notify the public.

Speaking of money - I've not heard anything about the estimate of what it will cost for the OBC-Public Information Campaign Oversight Committee to conduct the year-long, nationwide announcements to inform as many as possible about this new law about to go into effect, if Governor Quinn signs HB 5428.

Illinois currently has a $13 billion deficit. But why not cut programs for the needy and seniors, lay off teachers, just not pay some bills...?

After all it is more important to keep an ineffective registry and confidential intermediarey service intact. By the time another 25 years have passed maybe the registry will have matched 10% of the registrants. By all means keep those working for Midwest Adoption Center employed. They need to save lots of money because if they ever become disabled or a senior citizen, there might not be any state agencies to help them.

I've heard and read so many lies about HB 5428 that the TV remote and the local newspaper are starting to feel slimy.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

IL Governor Quinn must VETO HB 5428

Adoption reform in IL has steadily been going down the drain. As we feared the full Senate did pass this horrid HB 5428. Sneaky Sara and her cohorts have been lying and playing dirty politics. I know that is nothing new but this latest show will not only harm adoptee rights in IL but to those in other states who follow suit. Many of has have been preaching how serious this situation is and unfortunately it seems that some have to be burned worse than they already have been before they wake up. I will get off my soap box because the most important step you can take right now is to contact Governor Pat Quinn and urge him to VETO HB 5428.

Will you get to directly talk to the governor? Most likely not but he has office staff that will relay your message. The Springfield Office # is 217-782-0244 and the Chicago Office is 312-814-2121.

Please don't sit back - call NOW!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Gay had written testimony in her hands and read it word for word on April 13th before the IL Senate Judiciary Committee. I am a witness to that since I was present at the hearing. I have permission from Gay and her husband to place it on my Blog site. I respect their privacy so I have not included Gay's date of birth, their home address, phone # or email address. But other than that in its entirety:

April 13, 2010

To the Members of the Illinois Senate Judicary Committee:

My name is Gay Ellen Brown, I am a wife, mother of three daughters and grandma to Jacquline, my name sake, because I was born Jacquline Lenn Thompson on _________ in Chicago, Illinois and I am also an adoptee.

I flew in from New Jersey today to make my plea to you to stop the HB5428, it is unfair and unconstitutional to all adoptees born in Illinois.

My 51 year journey of self discovery of who and what I am came to a grinding halt last year because I wsas diagnosed with pre-cancerous conditions which required surgeries. My surgeon felt it necessary at this point in time to test me for the BRRCA gene for breast and ovarian cancer, however, my health insurance denied coverage for this very costly test because I can't prove anyone in my immediate family has this cancer and that I am not of a high risk group such as Swedish or Hungarian, but how do I know if I am? If I do not know my own heritage. If I had my original birth certificate I would know.

Growing up I always wanted to know answers to the questions every adoptee has. But today those answers could save my life or give me a better quality of life. I am also a birth mother who CHOSE to keep my daughters and I can't even protect them from possible inherited conditions that I may be passing down to them.

The discrimination we endure as adoptees must stop now, and our basic civil and human rights must be restored. Our original birth certificates belong to us and not to the state of Illinois.

Thank you for your time and consideration into this matter.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


It is URGENT that you contact IL Senators today (Sat., April 17). They must be persuaded to not pass IL HB 5428.

I've just placed a link on IL Open for phone and fax #'s for the senators. Below it is additional contact information for Web contact forms and email addresses. There is no guarantee that the Web contact forms and email addresses will work. But some do differ from what has been posted during recent days. If you are not going to call or fax the senators, by all means try reaching them through Web contact forms or email. It is vital that everyone fight this battle.

If HB 5428 is signed into law, many IL adopted adults will REGRET it. So will adopted adults in other states with closed records because often another state will follow suit. Remember that IL is a large state.

Please do your part and don't sit back thinking that others are taking care of things!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


For 30 years I've been an advocate for open records. I do understand that HB 5428 is a horrid bill. What I don't understand is how any legislator who is serving the people can vote Yea. My thought is that the length of the bill was meant to confuse as many as possible. How many legislators actually sat down and read through 80 pages (67 if saved into a Word file). I was at the hearing and saw first-hand how some of the senators were talking among themselves and laughing. Of course I don't know what they were laughing about but their minds did not seem to be totally on what was being said at the hearing. I won't go into what all I viewed but the rudeness and disrespect did stand out.

Rep. Sara Feigenholtz (D-Chicago) displayed power and perhaps it was used to fast-track this bill. I urge all of you to read an old blog at Chicago Reader about Rep. Feigenholtz not being a reformer. She claims to have adoptees within her heart but yet she sees nothing wrong with leaving many behind. An example of how stupid she is: after the hearing on April 13 she walked up to me, shook my hand and thanked me for my support. I had a "NO to IL HB 5428" sticker attached to the top that I was wearing. When I replied with an unfriendly expression on my face, "we are enemies", she started in about how we are not. She says that she wants what we want but this bill was the best that she could do. Then Rep. Feigenholtz moved on to talk to a reporter.

Melisha Mitchell with White Oak Foundation introduced herself and said that she reads the blogs and that she has never charged anyone for help. I thought that I would puke for certain. Then Sara entered our conversation by saying that adoptees want to find birth families and they want medical records. I told her that there are others like myself that want our civil rights restored. I went on to tell her that my family has been found and I have my original birth certificate but my civil rights have not been restored.

A pure clean bill I'm sure would be difficult to get passed into law. But what can seem to be impossible still holds a shred of hope. Present the bill well, get lots of supporters and give it a try. If it does not pass now, then keep sponsoring one like it every year until it does pass. Determination is the key to accomplishng tasks.

Those who attended the hearing on April 13 can confirm my saying that Rep. Feigenholtz received compliments as if she had just invented something greater than electricity. I forgot to take a "barf bag" with me so I did stomach the BS the best that I could. She had some idiot from Alaska testify as a supporter and he went on and on and on some more about his life. This was after the chairman for the hearing did announce that only two supporters and two opponents would be allowed to testify. Yep! I still have not figured out why the Alaskan's testimony was relevant other than he had been in an orphanage. It was all that I could do to not fall asleep. Then a lady representing The Cradle in Evanston testified in support of the bill. She talked as if the bill is what IL adoptees have needed for years. My guess is that she has not read the bill or she would know that many would be left behind.

Then the chairman announced that one opponent who felt the bill did not go far enough could testify plus one who felt that the bill went too far. Now how were we opponents to know which two could approach the table and speak. I told Gay Brown, A Chicago adoptee who now lives in NJ to grab a seat. An adoptive father grabbed the other one. Of course he got to speak first and he does not know his beans from apple butter. It was evident that the senators realized it because of the questions they threw at him. But yet he was allowed to go on and on. Mary Dixon with the ACLU was called up to clarify some things since the man had several in the room shaking their heads. She does not know much more than he. She actually "quoted" a law but left out a sentence. She did not understand some of the questions asked of her so one or two were repeated. I felt sorry for Gay sitting there waiting and waiting to be be able to speak. She did a great job when the opportunity was given to her! She talked about not knowing one's nationality and some medical issues she has experienced. But she did place emphasis on the bill being unfair and unconstitutional to all adoptees born in IL. She did stress that our basic civil and human rights must be restored. I do think what she had to say must have tugged at some hearts. Unforutnately the majority of the senators did vote Yea. But you must remember that this is Illinois and politics are more important than lives. Treat people inhumane but go with what your party leaders want. Actually I do question how they can vote prior to reading written testimony but they sure did it. But I did hand my own in anyway before I left and that of an organization's.

Those who know some of the IL history have heard of Al Capone. Yes, the mafia gunned down people but then cared for the deceased's family. Now we have a different mafia in Springfield that does not gun down people at the Capitol. What they do elsewhere, I'm not sure. But they look you right in the face while they aare actually stabbing you in the back. They think that we are stupid when we are smarter than at least many of them. They are not as nice as Al Capone but do refrain from having someone gun you down at the Capitol or in the parking areas. They even let Blago walk away so we are probably safe in that respect. Just how long I'm not sure.

Gay Brown and I were interviewed by Steve Staeger with WCIA3. He did a great job of reporting the story and I urge you to listen to it. A few words that Gay said at the hearing are part of the film.

This bill is getting closer and closer to the governor's desk but we still have a chance of defeating it with the full Senate. We can not give up this fight. I admit that I think the chances are slim of winning but until the full Senate votes we have got to let them know how we feel about this bill. Don't wait until tomorrow or sit back while others speak out. Everyone is needed - even get your neighbor's dog to bark "NO" over the phone. Just a one minute message left on voice mail or with an administrative person could help. All IL adopted adults must have their civil rights restored and nothing less is acceptable. Please quote that last sentence if you wish!

Saturday, April 10, 2010


This is Saturday, April 10 and the Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a public hearing at 2:30 pm on April 13. Not everyone feels comfortable doing public speaking but we need opponents present at this hearing. The Capitol is not hard to find in Springfield.

If you cannot make it to the hearing, have you contacted the senators? Contact information is at the IL Open Web site - You do not have to be personally touched by adoption to join in this battle to stop a bill that does not restore civil rights to all adopted adults.

Just a brief phone call could be effective, especially if a senator's office receives loads of them. Don't expect to speak directly to the senator but a clerk/secretary will relay your message. Wouldn't it be great if each senator received so many messages that not all of them could be held in two hands?

I am calling to plead with the senator to vote NAY to HB 5428. It does not restore civil rights to all adoptees and nothing less is acceptable. Birth parents' rights were terminated at the time of the adoption and they have no right now to say whether or not their son or daughter can have their original birth certificate.

Please do your part - everyone is needed in this battle!

Friday, April 9, 2010


There is an URGENT IL Open Organization Action Alert posted at

NOW is the time to speak out and everyone opposed to IL HB 5428 needs to do this. Please don't think that others are taking care of it. Don't stop with the senators because we need for newspapers to print what a horrid bill this is. We need the news media to let the taxpayers know. How could they be happy about an expense that is not necessary when there is already a fiscal crisis in IL?

If this bill becomes law, forget adoption reform in IL. It would set a precedent to the other states with closed records too.

We want civil rights restored to ALL adopted adults - you must speak out!

Thursday, April 8, 2010


When I have not been busy with writing to senators and newspapers regarding IL HB 5428, I have been wondering where are the IL adopted adults.

Now I do realize that those born prior to 1/1/46 could be happy with anticipating that if the horrid bill becomes law, they will have access to their original birth certificate (OBC) with no conditions attached. Sadly some people only think of themselves.

I'm from the old school where I was raised to treat others the way that I like to be treated. For years I've had my own OBC but I still care about the ones that don't. I've never been able to turn my back on other adopted adults. I will admit that I do want my civil right restored to me and I won't sit back until it is. But neither will I sit back and not kick and scream to see equality for ALL IL adopted adults. Nothing less than equality for all is acceptable.

Do those sitting back realize that if this bill becomes law in IL, a precedent will be set for other closed record states? Do they realize that if this bill becomes law, adoption reform will not happen in IL?

Those living in IL should think about the unemployment rate and how it is on the rise partly due to the fiscal crisis in our state. When less income is coming in, less spending is done and that ultimately affects many things.

Are you going to sit back or are you going to speak out? The time is here and the clock is ticking away. HB 5428 was fast-tracked through the House and it is happening in the Senate. If you have written to newspapers and not had a letter published, write some more letters. If you have emailed legislators, try calling or faxing them. It appears that our legislators do avoid email. A phone call might not result in getting to speak directly with a senator but the more messages from opponents the better.

Thanks in advance for helping to fight this bill!


The IL Senate Judiciary Committee has announced there will be a public hearing at 2:30 on Tuesday, April 13th.

I realize that not every one likes to speak out in front of a group of people. But to have a large number of opponents to this bill at the hearing could help.

Please email me if you can help -

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


IL HB 5428 really should be referred to as the quiet little mouse. Sneaky Sara Feigenholtz and company mapped out where the traps were and the bill just scurried through on a fast track. We probably will never know how much cheese was dished out first or if favors will be shown down the road a bit further. Not enough representatives had any backbone so now the bill has reached the senate judiciary comittee.

Which senators will do the right thing showing that they believe in equality for all? Will politics come first to where all the Democrats will vote YEA disregarding the state's fiscal crisis? Will they think that it is only right for more people to be laid off work and needed programs be cut? Or will they not even begin to estimate the cost of the year-long, nationwide campaign to inform the public about a new law so birth parents can decide or not to deny their offspring their original birth certificate? Granted we can't count on all the Republican senators to do the right thing either. Many politicians thrive on "scratch my back, I'll scratch yours".

But the legislators who don't do right do not have to be reelected. Voters, keep track of the representative and senator for the district that you reside in. If they don't do right with this bill, can you count on them to do right with other bills? Probably not.

It is doubtful that IL HB 5428 is the only bill that has been kept as quiet as a mouse. When you think about it, it is no wonder that IL is in a fiscal crisis.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Write to your newspapers re: IL HB 5428

I've had another letter to the editor published. Go to, click on "letters to the editor" in the navigation bar and scroll on down past the one that was published in The News-Gazette on 3/30.

"Urbana woman says bill harmful to adoptee rights", Paxton Record, 3/31/10

We MUST stop HB 5428 in its tracks. Public awareness never hurts and one of the easiest ways is to write to the editor of the different IL newspapers. See for links to newspapers. "Contact us" is usually at the top or near the bottom of the individual Web sites. Many editors can be emailed while there will be Web forms to complete at some of the Web sites. Include your name, city of residence, and phone #. Your phone # will not be published but you could receive a call to cofirm that you actually submitted the letter.