Gay Plus Four in Israel

Gay fashion designer and screenwriter Tom Salama is the co-creator of the new Israeli series “Miguel” (based on the story of his life). He writes about living with 4 adopted children: “My 15-year-old adopted son asked me why we couldn’t adopt a girl from Israel into the family. Because Dad is unfit, I answered.”

‘Miguel,’ a new TV series about a gay man adopting a child in Guatemala soon to be aired in Israel

A new drama series I wrote will soon be aired by the cable network Hot. It’s a small story about one guy, me. My part is being played by Ran Danker. The guy wants to be a father, so he travels far away to adopt a child because in his country, they don’t allow him to.

In a High Court of Justice hearing on a petition submitted by the Israel Religious Action Center and the NGO Gay Dads, the state responded that same-sex parents should not be allowed to adopt children, and thus it determined that about 8 percent of the population are defective, unfit. I might not have noticed this if my 15-year-old adopted son had not asked me whether this meant we could not adopt another girl into the family. We could, I answered, if we travel to a Third World country, pay tens of thousands of dollars to adoption agencies in Israel and a few thousand more to adoption agencies abroad, and a few bribes here and there. Why not a girl from Israel, he asked. Because Dad is unfit, he’s defective, I answered.

Fourteen years ago, when I adopted my eldest son, I received a home visit from a social worker. Excited, I sat opposite her on my green velvet sofa, behind a wall with gold and red stripes, in the center of which a giant zebra head was hanging (leftover scenery from my work in television). Why don’t you get married, she asked, and her eyes rose to the zebra head, staring at it with gleaming eyes, as if asking: “Are you serious, sister?” I looked at her silently and she overcame an embarrassed look. At that moment I understood that she was just filling out a form that was composed by ignorant clerks.

Today I have four adopted children and a partner. My eldest son is smart and handsome and socially involved. My daughter is Israel’s champion in apparatus gymnastics, speaks three languages and is the most beautiful girl in Israel. The two other boys are in sports for the gifted, they’re good-looking too, and good-hearted. They’re all full of humor and love and they all have two fathers, Lord have mercy. Ah, yes, and they’re all adopted. From there, not from here; here it’s not allowed, like in Iran or Chechnya. Continue reading in Haaretz