Assignment: Legal and Ethical Analysis
Assignment: Legal and Ethical Analysis
As someone knowledgeable about research on children with exceptionalities, you have been given the task of presenting a report to the court on your arguments for and against people with intellectual disabilities raising children.
Do the following:
- Launch the online library (under Academic Resources).
- Select Find Videos.
- Select Filmakers Library Online.
- In the search box, type “is love enough” and click Go.
- The first result should be Is Love Enough? directed by Tom Puchniak. Review this video.
Analyze the historical, legal, and ethical issues in the video. Make sure you include the following in your analysis (in an order that flows well in your paper):
- Compare the historical trends related to people with disabilities. How would outcomes be different fifty years ago for the people in the movie?
- Compare the differences from about ten years ago when the movie was produced to today.
- Explain how far we have come and what still needs to be addressed (such as terminology, acceptance, and support).
- Explain how laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the IDEA influence these decisions.
- Identify the ethical principles that might apply to the situation. Consider the professional ethics codes, including the following:
- American Psychological Association. (2010). Ethical principles of psychologists and code of conduct. Retrieved from
- American Counseling Association. (2005). ACA code of ethics. Alexandria, VA: Author. Retrieved from
- Synthesize your research and create two arguments: one for and one against parents with intellectual disabilities raising children. Consider the perspectives of the parents as well as the children. Use evidence and examples from research, utilizing your assigned readings, and at least two peer-reviewed articles on this topic to support your argument.
- Given what you learned in the video, your assigned readings, and research you found, recommend supports or interventions for the following:
- The family
- Within the community for the family and child
- The school
- Although this video focused on those with intellectual disabilities, generalize the issues to other exceptionalities.
- Conclude your paper with a review of current thinking for and against people with exceptionalities raising children, based on the sources used.
Write a 7–9-page paper (not counting the title page, abstract, or reference page) in Word format. Apply APA standards to citation of sources. Be sure to include a title page, abstract, and reference page also in APA format.
Transcript from Video:
00:10fL Filmakers Library, Inc. New York , N.Y. PRESENTS Alan Handel Productions III Inc.
00:25We want a child like everybody else. We have abilities. We don’t look at her disability.
00:30Just because we’re disabled, it doesn’t mean we can’t at least try.
00:35DENNIS LINT I don’t think they should have children. I think the risk is too great.
00:45How would you feel if the kid’s retarded or… or normal? I said, “I don’tcare how the kid is, at least I will love it.”
00:55SUE But you have to think of the child. It’s just… It’s not fair.
MARY ANN But I don’t really regret anything that I’ve done, because everything that I have done has made me who I am and I think despite everything that I’ve turned out okay.
01:05I… I really want a child, badly …and I’d be a good mom.
01:20C. DAVID JOHNSON Who has the right to be a parent? It’s the mostelemental and the most demanding of human responsibilities. A task that many people feel is far too difficult to be managed by a retarded person. Yet, today an estimated 100,000 children are born every year to retarded parents in North America and we still know relatively little about this phenomenon. The intellectually-disabled say they can provide all the devotion a baby requires, but a growing child may need much more than love.
02:00Is Love Enough? Written & Directed by Tom Puchniak Produced by Alan Handel
02:15MIKE GODMAN Batshaw Family Services, Montreal You can look at a number of intellectually handicapped adults and you’ll see someone who visually looks like a… an adult, but you have to remember that this person may be functioning at an intellectual and an emotional stage that could be closer to eight, nine, ten, which begs the question, “Would you be comfortable with an eight, nine-year-old or 10-year-old caring full time for your child?
02:3500:02:40] MADONNA FRADSHAM Assn For Community Living Many people with intellectual disabilities are short-changed and people don’t expect enough of them and therefore, you know, people decide that they are not capable before they are even given a chance.
02:50DAVE HINGSBURGER Author/Consultant You have to realize in one generation people with disabilities have gone from being idiots and morons to neighbors and friends and that’s been quite a journey.
03:05C. DAVID JOHNSON For hundreds of years, western society regarded the mentally retarded as sad accidents of nature to be closeted behind walls of secrecy and silence. Thousands were forcibly sterilized in an attempt to erase the genetic stain of their misfortune. But scientists now know that barely 10% of mental retardation is passed on genetically. The most common causes are illness during pregnancy and traumatic injuries to the brain. The last sterilization wards were shut down in the1970’s , but many of the attitudes which spawned them remain. And the controversy over the ability of the retarded to be adequate parents is far from over.
04:10C. DAVID JOHNSON We cannot identify the woman whose story we are about to tell, because she was involved in legal action with child welfare. We’ll call her Susan . Susan has an intellectual disability. Fifteen years ago, she had a baby boy. Within months, child welfare officials decided she couldn’t handle the child and seized it for adoption. Two and a half years ago, she had another baby, a girl. Once again, child welfare took the child away.
04:40SUSAN PURCELL I ask one thing in life is to see my child growing up.You don’t know how hard it… hard it is not to see a child growing up, like having one child die just like Mary losing her child.
05:10C. DAVID JOHNSON It is a frequent occurrence: the child of a mentally disabled parent removed by a social welfare system that doubts the parents’ ability to raise and educate her. Most of the time, the parents do not contest the decision. But Susan decided to fight back. She felt she was getting a raw deal and so did the local association for community living, which works with intellectually disabled people.Madonna Fradsham is an Anglican minister and executive director of the association.
05:45MADONNA FRADSHAM I didn’t know whether she was going to be a good parent or not, nor did anyone else, but the period of time that they had granted her was not enough time for them to determine whethershe was going to be a good parent to that child.
06:00C. DAVID JOHNSON The association decided to use Susan and her baby as a test case for the rights of intellectually disabled parents to raise their children. The child’s father is also mentally disabled, butSusan had broken up with him and he is not part of the case.