THIS THING OF OURS-ADOPTION

THE KOREAN WAR BABY

My name is Don Gordon BELL and I am one of the earliest of the first generation of KAD's (Korean ADoptees). The Korean War had been settled by Armistice three years before I left war-torn Seoul, Korea, on May 21, 1956. It was the first plane of twelve 'war babies' processed thru the Harry Holt Adoption Program. Read more of MY STORY on My Pages.
I grew up in a typical middle-class family of English-Scottish roots in greater Los Angeles, Ca, USA. Memories faded, Korean language was 'lost' and I did not know anything about the country of my birth until I met Korean Marines in Vietnam while serving with the US Marines. It was my first exposure to real Korean people. I was not completely aware of how prejudiced most Koreans thought towards a Half-Breed like me. I learned what "Tuigi" meant, a Korean word for a "Child of a Foreign devil". Oh, wonderful.


All my life I always had to answer the question: "What ARE you?" and I simply would tell 'my story'. It was not a big deal for me, for my Adoptive Parents had taught me that being an American meant that WE were from many countries. I never 'wished to be White' and just learned to stand up for my own identity. MY Identity was as an American, with mixed heritage. I did not know what being "Korean" meant but often wondered about my roots, and what my birth father's ethnicity. Mexican, Native Americans, and Spanish people would tell me that I had their 'genes' for sure. Little did I know they were right!

After college, I traveled to Manila and for ten years I lived in the Philippines. I was excepted as a 'mestizo' and fit into the former Spanish colony. I was a B-movie Character Actor,
working on international and local films, enjoying a 'crazy and wild' abandonment. Then a life changing experience gave me faith in a personal Higher Being. After walking away from the film business, I lived back in the USA, not sure of my direction in life finding work in construction, finish carpentry, door hanging, and many other jobs I'd like to forget.

In 1991, at 38, I attended a Holt Heritage Camp that was a great experience and really began my own journey of Adoption Identity search. I had never thought much of my Korean culture, though I always felt proud of being "HALF-Korean" and "half-Something".

In 1994 I came back to Seoul, Korea, with my church Vineyard Christian Fellowship, and was invited to stay with a church in East Seoul, for one year. I have lived here since late 1995- re-discovering my "Korean-ness", teaching English and telling my Adoption Story to thousands of Korean students of all ages, helping their understanding of Korean Adoptees. It is one of the issues that Korea is now facing, even for its own secretly adopted children, those who were adopted IN-Country by Koreans who desired a family but due to problems with Infertility secretly adopt.

I was a charter member in 1997 (first dozen members) of GOA'L (Global Overseas Adoptees' Link, founded by Ami Nafzger) and continue to be involved with the complex issues of This Thing of Ours-Adoption. Thousands of KADs have visited Korea over the years, searching for their culture and Some search for birth family. Seventy-five thousand have come, yet only 2,400 plus have found Reunion with Birth family, often with varying results. There are many complexities, many don't want to search concerned about offending their Adoptive Families. Each KAD must decide what they want to do, when to do it, etc.


At 61, I am still 'working thru' my Adoption Identity. Each of YOU need to 'work through' your own understanding and hopefully find forgiveness and healing. Read many different accounts and compare before coming to conclusions. I hope that you will learn what IS happening NOW, in the land of your birth, the Rep. of Korea (South Korea). (See Report Links).

Times are changing, the reasons for 'relinquishment for adoption' have shifted, but there continues to be a need for a multi-tiered approach and understanding of Adoption issues. Slowly, attitudes of Korean society ARE changing for the better. But, the majority continue to feel embarrassment and shame. Thus, Adoption is still shrouded in secrecy even for those who are adopted In-country. There ARE positive signs and movements of NGO's and KAD groups are advocating for the Unwed Mothers. However, two-thirds of pregnant women each year, continue to give up their babies for adoption. One out of four are sent overseas, YET three are secretly adopted in-country. The Myth that "Koreans don't adopt" is false, but they need to open up and hopefully change their shame to pride.


This blog is for EVERYONE, whether you are an Adoptee, Adoptive Family, Birth Family or involved in Adoption in ANY way as a professional, social worker, official, etc, from Korea or the world. We examine the complex issues and personal journeys that we, domestic and overseas adoptees, have to face and sort out in This Thing of Ours-Adoption. (Use the Ligit Search function (Left Column) to check for Posts on various topics, TransRacial, TranCultural, MultiCultural families, Domestic, Civil Code Law Adoptions, InterCountry Adoption, etc.)
I personally have come to a compromised, nuanced position on this thing of ours-adoption. I advocate a Multi-tiered Plan that tries to be balanced, realistic, fair to all.

UPDATE: Living in the Philippines since 2010, at first teaching students from several countries as an Online Tutor, based in Makati, Metro Manila. I was working on a Digital Library for Online Tutoring or ELearning; developing an agritourism farm; and Overseas Retirement Care for foreigners needing 24/7 health care.

Then some 18 months ago, in July of 2012 I met with Andrew Leavold, a crazy film obsessed Aussie who helped "pull me back into film making".

WHEW! Lot on my plate. I have also been learning much about the Filipino society's very different viewpoints on unwed motherhood and adoption.

Latest: As of Sept. 2012, I worked on an Indie Film, "Baybayin, the Palawan Script", directed by Auraeus Solito, and international award winning Filipino director. I had a role in the film and explored my hobby as a STILLS Photographer. Currently I have quit all teaching, co-writing on an international film that will be done in 3D and CGI effects. I am back in the film-making business and I love it.

Adoption Discourse needs to hear YOUR VOICE. Every opinion, even opposing viewpoints will be posted and interaction invited by email and Comments have been activated again with spam filters!)
. Welcome, come learn, and share your thoughts.


March 31, 2010

Jane Jeong Trenka-TRACK

http://justicespeaking.wordpress.com/position-statement/
Jane Jeong Trenka has sent the Korean War Baby this link that was just posted on TRACK’s site, however she tried to get GOA’L and ASK to sign a Memorandum of Understanding just days after the ASK dinner of Jan. 23, 2010.
Don’t dare to tell ME, the Korean War Baby that he is just mad about losing? GOA’L has been hi-jacked, and unless YOU MEMBERS who HAVE NO VOICE nor can you VOTE at ALL in the future,
DO SOMETHING, THEY WILL GET AWAY WITH IT.
“When Good People DO NOTHING” you deserve what you get.

The Korean War Baby is on the War Path Ba' nadant'aahi' means kinda like KISS MY ASS. Oh, dear must watch my ‘potty mouth’ but my darkness inside SCREAMS out, the Language of Blood, of all my ancestors and by adoption Demand action.

*********************************************************
On this date:
Sun, Mar 28, 2010 at 12:21 PM
subjectFwd: MOU
Hi Don,
I'm not sure what it'll take to convince you that TRACK has no interest at all in the demise of GOAL, and that we think that they provide valuable services, but here is my attempt to prove it to you.
I sent this to ASK and GOAL directly after the first awful ASK meeting and after calling all these parties, as well as Mee Joo. They all agreed verbally, but did not follow through in writing.
Nobody took me up on it at the time (two months ago!!!) but in light of what has apparently happened, I sent out a request again this morning that everyone get on board and sign.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Jane Jeong Trenka <jjtrenka@gmail.com>
Date: 2010/1/26
Subject: MOU
To: Dae-won Wenger <sg@goal.or.kr>, stoker <klstoker@gmail.com>, jenny na <jennykyungja@yahoo.com>
Hi folks,
In case you could not open it, here is my proposed draft of an MOU. If you would like to participate, please write in your corrections and contribution, as well as paste in your logo, and I can stick it all together and send it back to you for your approval.
Best,
--
Jane Jeong Trenka 鄭敬我
TRACK 진실과 화해를 위한 해외 입양인 모임
http://justicespeaking.wordpress.com
http://jjtrenka.wordpress.com/
**************************************************************
In the days since the SHAM / FAKE ELECTION OF March 27th, 2010
The Korean War Baby has asked for clarification from groups that were involved on this fateful night.
THIS IS THE MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING THAT Jane Jeong Trenka sent to ASK and GOA’L on the date of JAN. 26, 2010, just 3 days after the ASK Dinner where Kim Su Rasmussen proposed to “Wouldn’t it be wonderful if ASK and TRACK…politicized GOA’L and take it over by Democratic means.
We witnessed the ‘democratic means’ of European abstention rules and Last Minute Candidate
 Julie Jong Koch by the Gang of 33.
(For you folks that may wonder why certain people’s names are in red. Red is used to signify someone who has died, In this case, THOSE WHO ARE DEAD TO ME. Not that I wish violence towards them, NO no no- nor anything bad on them, but they
no longer have meaning to
the Korean War Baby.
***************************************************
Mon, Mar 29, 2010 at 6:07 PM
subject Re: MOU
Hi again,
I think that I have not addressed your question about what I might know in advance about the ASK meeting.
Believe me, I had NO IDEA they were going to pull that and I was wondering in my mind if how I might be able to just fall out of the window. I was ABSOLUTELY HORRIFIED that they did that at the ASK meeting, since I was sitting right next to Kim Su Rasmussen, and he said, "Wouldn't it be nice if TRACK and etc etc etc." So I was perfectly horrified and felt that he had implicated our organization in that plan.
Jennifer and I tried to make a space at KoRoot for us all to talk together after that, but KSR and BY did not come to that dinner. So we have never really talked about this face to face. Lack of communication is just terrible. Eli came to that dinner, but I perceive him to be more of an innocent bystander who has a connection with KSR because there are so few male adoptee academics from Scandinavia!! He doesn't even live in Korea.
Anyway, I had heard about KSR's ideas since this past summer, and I have never wavered in TRACK's position, which is "NOT INTERESTED IN THAT."
TRACK is doing what we have always set out to do and there is no reason for us to meddle with GOAL or ASK or anybody else. As you know from the MOU, we think there is a place for the Army, Air Force, and the Marines. ;) GOAL's direction is up to GOAL. Frankly, I do not care personally what direction GOAL goes, whether anti-adoption, pro-adoption, or neutral. That is probably not what you want to hear, as I know you very much want neutrality for GOAL. But for me, I just want to respect the groups and people here and work together for the common good. TRACK is doing what it has always done and our goal is very clear (the truth and reconciliation commission, which will give us so much information) and that is that!! It's very simple for me and for TRACK -- we are just doing our own work and hope to work together with others, and if they don't want to work with us (as has been the case with GOAL for some time now), then that's OK, we will just go our own way.
See ya,
jane
**************************************************************
This is the document Jane sent on Jan. 26th

MemOfUnderstanding_TRACK_p1
         MemOfUnderstanding_TRACK_p2
Jennifer Kwon Dobbs has also put forth the innocence of TRACK involvement or knowledge. I accept their explanations and believe the group TRACK are innocent.

Korean War Baby to Jennifer Kwon Dobbs
“Jennifer tell me if this is true? It comes from a someone you know very well, but is not involved:
From Source to Don Gordon Bell, Just after ASK dinner, 23 Jan, 2010
"I just heard about what went down at the ASK meeting. Just to let you know, Jennifer and Jane were as appalled as you were about the hijacking of the meeting (Jan. 23 ASK Diner across from KoRoot,) and didn't know anything about what Kilseung(sp? Kim Su Rasmussen) and other former members (Dr. Eli Park Sorensen) were cooking up. In fact, he had asked for some joint commitment towards some aggressive action against GOAL a few months back and TRACK and ASK told him they didn't want any part of it and thought that was the end of it." From a source
Yet Kim Stoker looked me in the eye and said she did not know what they were going to talk about. I am not stupid just old. This person's account seems to contradict that. I would like your remembrance of the ASK dinner of Jan 23, 2010.
 
I am giving you (Jennifer Kwon Dobbs) the chance to clear up, WHAT DID YOU KNOW and WHEN DID YOU KNOW IT. Did you personally meet with Kim Su and Eli, or know of their plans, before that night? The email does not implicate either of you. Please, Send me your account by email, I will post it immediately next to the section. I will not alter a word. As it is "you were both appalled" is what I would expect. But I WANT TO KNOW who the "Leaders were from ASK and TRACK" who didn't want any part of it. Certainly not Ms. Kim Stoker.
**********************************************************
Well, both Jane Jeong Trenka and Jennifer Kwon Dobbs (from Truth and Reconciliation for Adoptees Commission in Korea) have convince the KWB that they DID NOT know. Who were the “leaders from TRACK that didn’t want any part of it” then?

Could perhaps Nicole Sheppard shed some light on these events? or perhaps on this comment on "An interesting weekend and result at the GOA'L AGM this past Saturday"? Nicole, you were present at the ASK Dinner of 23 Jan. 2010, were you not. What did you know and when did YOU know about it?Ms. 김종에 are you not one of the Gang of 33?
Go ask her folks, demand answers.
********************************
I, the Korean War Baby, Don Gordon Bell, have signed this document the MOU that SHOULD have been signed by ASK and GOA’L, back in January. As a sign of good faith from TRACK. ONLY.

QUESTION to GOA'L: Why was it not taken as a serious matter by You?
Why did Jane go to them again just this week and they GOA'L and ASK are scrambling to post their NEUTRALITY? This is unacceptable to rational minds.
 
Yet the co-Founders Jenny Na and Kim Stoker who started Adoptees Solidarity Korea and several of their members, Tammy Chu, Maya Weimer, Ko Su Yoon, were part of the Gang of 33!!!
 
Voting in Lock Step.
 
North Korean babes training


CAN YOU ACCEPT A Belated MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING FROM THE ASK members NOW?
Want to buy a bridge?


.
***********************************
Someone asked me, WWJD, or “What would Jesus do”
Hmmm, let me ask “What would Geronimo, my ancestor do or say?”
Ba' nadant'aahi'
“roughly kiss my ass”
Geronimo_MedicineManWGreatPower
Geronimo
One of my ancestors was in the tribe of the Chiricahua Apache tribe, one of the six tribes of the Apache Nation. Geronimo was a Medicine man and War Chief of the Chiricahua Apache. Apache is “Enemy” in Zuni language qaapaču and they were one of the most feared of Native Americans.
For 5 years Geronimo and his small band eluded thousand of US Army troops, killing hundreds of men, women, and children. He accepted several times to go to a reservation but always sought to escape when the US government broke the promises.
Gokhlayeh is the Apache name, and can mean “He who laughs”. Geronimo ran through ranks of Mexican soldiers, the same who had massacred his family. He killed them with his knife in full day light, leading a war party after following the guilty soldiers. There were Apache prisoners that the Mexicans would sell as slaves.
All the time Geronimo laughed wickedly as he slashed their throats, and afterwards, covered in their blood he thanked the Great Spirit for the victory.
The poor Mexican soldiers cried out to their patron saint “Je ro me save me” in Spanish sounds like Geronimo. The name stuck and ‘Geronimo’ became the name of the last Native American to fight the USA.

Jane Jeong Trenka and Jennifer Kwon Dobbs are okay in my book, So I signed their original MOU as a Sign of Understanding from the Korean War Baby.

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Mom and Son Reunite, Thanks to Korean Reality Show - ABC News

Hey Don,
I was wondering if some of the gang of 33 were the one's that use to beat me up when I was young living in Korea. You also being Amerasian know what I mean. Below is the link to my story. It was over a year ago but, It give's so hope in this world.


Take Care,
Jon Huston

No Jon the Gang of 33 are fellow adoptees that feel that they lost their language, culture, family, Korean society, and identity BECAUSE OF ADOPTION! I have studied their reasons and felt that it was NOT adoption but the fact that most Korean women were pressured by society, their own families rejection, and lack of Society’s rejection of even full-blood children who are fatherless bastards, and most of all lack of government support of single Unwed Mothers. I believe in a Multi-tiered approach towards moving the Korean people to keep their children.

Korean War Baby

Link to ABC News Video
Mom and Son Reunite, Thanks to Korean Reality Show - ABC News
abcnews.go.com

Mom and Son Reunite, Thanks to Korean Reality Show

Korean TV Show Connects Minnesota Man With Korean Birth Mom After Decades Apart

The search for his birth mother took a Minnesota man more than 6,000 miles to Korea, where he was given up for adoption 37 years ago.
'Did He Just Fall Out of the Sky'
"She told my translator, 'Did he just fall out of the sky? He's all of a sudden here?'" Huston said.
His birth mother, who is 72 and never remarried, spent days preparing food for him. She said there was nothing better than watching her son eat well. "I'll remember it forever," he said.
For Huston's birth mother, the visit was bittersweet.
"The first time 37 years ago she put me on an airplane and didn't see me again," Huston said. "Now she got to see me but put me back on the plane and doesn't know when she'll see me again."
Still, she said, if she were to die tomorrow, she'd die happy. Huston hopes to bring his Korean and Minnesota families together someday.
Huston's two children know they have a third grandma now.
He shares their sentiment. "I feel very lucky, that I have two moms," he said. "And you know, my one mom gave me life. And my other mom helped me live life. So I'm just very fortunate."
Susanna Song is a reporter with ABC News' St. Paul, Minn. affiliate KSTP-TV.
For some few, stopping Intercountry Adoption is the best way to make Korean people take care of their own.
NO-You can change Laws but you CANNOT change hearts. Korean War Baby
That takes more time, hearing the stories of Unwed Mothers and their struggles. Soon the Korean War Baby, now an outcast of GOA’L will continue to present to Korean people his blog IN KOREAN LANGUAGE on NAVER. The Gang of 33 have shut him off…but they cannot shut me up!!!
Next: Jane Jeong Trenka and Jennifer Kwon Dobbs "GET IT-Understand".

March 30, 2010

'Oderint dum metuant' :: 'Let them hate me, provided that they fear me' ::

AGM_Pg 7
"LET THEM HATE, AS LONG AS THEY FEAR" 
The Korean War Baby has declared WAR against the
Shameful Sham Election and those who have robbed
the Members of GOA'L of their right to vote.
Beware Gang of 33, I am coming after you!!!


This is page 7 of the Annual General Meeting info that was sent out to all members (Only here in Korea, you others don’t count).
Point 5. Deadlines
“Members may still nominate candidates for the Board of Directors, Community Board and Secretary General….at the Annual General Meeting
What the #&@? Why speak of deadlines? This is how “Julie Jong Koch” could be “nominated as a candidate” with NO APPLICATION OR QUESTIONNAIRE…when she probably just signed up as a member? Ms. Julie actually mentioned that she has been in Korea for three years,  NO, MONTHS. Such vast experience she brought to the table, I bet she actually eats Kimchee and is still learning to use chopsticks!!!

The canard continues unabated,  “All BOD, Community Board, and Secretary General applications and proposals …..should be submitted by 12th March 2010.”
OH, I see “Should be” must NOT mean in Europe “MUST BE.”

TERRY AND SETH ARE YOU GETTING THIS? You wasted all your time preparing, why you could have just been nominated by a friend at the AGM. Can you say
logo_goal(1)
 “I applied as Secretary General and all I got was a stick-on Logo!”
COURTNEY Hope you enjoyed your visit, sorry for the waste of time.


HEY, YOU PEOPLE WHO WERE ADOPTED BY HOLT. GIVE ME YOUR VOICES!! Would you have liked growing up in an institution? Then kicked out on your own at 19? Forget college or university, you would have been an outcast of society.
How many of you know Half-Breeds, Hapa, MULTIRacial types like the KWB? Where are those who know you were ABANDONED, did you get your parent’s release forms? No, Gee you should have rotted in an institution, so sorry you lost your language and Korean culture.
Oh, you had what? A defect, Downs, crippled, well we just can’t have you HERE in the Most HOMOGENEOUSLY and PERFECT country, no wonder you were sent away.”

Doesn’t that sound MAD? Yet, dear ones, it is the sad, inconvenient truth. Almost 70,000 of us were sent away because the Korean SOCIETY did not want us.
Our mothers, most of them did have hope that we would be raised by a loving family. Many mothers did worry and suffered silently until this day. But to come out and tell your family, “guess who is coming to dinner”.

Well, we could ask MAJA, member of the Gang of 33, from “somewhere in Europe” about her reunion with her birth family.How’s that going, Maja?” Last year she shared some very deep painful words. Seems some birth family members don’t exactly want to “bring things out in the open, but could you teach your younger relatives English…for free?” Maja shared her heart to us at the “Boarding Bridges” the 1st Art Festival of International Korean Adoptees, and is currently writing her story for a book.
Hopefully in  English version as well as Korean. We must continue to educate the Korean people about our cases. Her circumstances of separation were not clear, but the power of her prose was cutting, straight to the heart. Maja? Do you blame Adoption Agencies for Stealing you? What were the circumstances of your relinquishment? 

Every story is not the same, similar to some or many but unique and special in each case  individual. We will be watching for her book.
Secrecy because of shame and embarrassment is a common factor over here. The Korean War Baby’s own Korean wife did not tell relatives he was adopted, or worse a half-breed Bastard either. Just last year, it was found out that they had no idea. Then his wife learned that a cousin-in-law was adopted by an Uncle and treated like a servant or slave. It was her turn to be shocked and awed discovering for the first time her relative, the American was an Adoptee with the blood.

Adoptees speak out:

 
Jon Huston
I'm with you brother. I understand what my birth mom had to do and I'm so glad she did. I wanted to find her to tell her she did the right thing.
Today at 9:56am · March 29, 2010
************************************

Nolin Han Stratton 한석준 Don: "I am a...US Marine; we only Know Intense and Strong. You don't defeat your enemies by being kind. Marines don't sit in trenches, we charge the beach or assault the fort. WE ATTACK!"

Don, we may not always agree on everything, however I admire your undaunting determination to see justice served, so that the helpless are protected. If ever I went into battle, I want you watching my back! God bless you, brother.


Yesterday at 11:48am · March 28, 2010
********************************
Michael In-Mn
Every child deserves a home !
Yesterday at 12:28pm ·
**********************************
Helena 난 이 Lee
Don, if you speak of neutrality- then I want to say equitably that this group that you call 'Gang of 33' is not a crazy radical heartless gang. You know the people and I know the people, they were your friends and they are my friends and we have sat and talked about these issues. They are very intelligent,educated,well informed and committed group of...adoptees with a strong ideology against ICA and concerned about the treatment of unwed mothers and their children in Korea in the 21st century.

I remember workshops and sessions when many international adoptees questioned, grilled them for wanting to stop all ICA, and running out of the room because they disagreed with this group for their black and white views.
They had the burden of proof to convince the rest of the audience and they were not successful. But at the end of the day,ppl could see for themselves that they don't have all the answers and oh yes,people got emotional,frustrated and angry, but that is politics and life- you know it gets ugly inside the ring....so KEEP your friends, rise above it all and remember WWJD!!
Today at 12:54am ·
KWB to Helena: Yes, some of them remain my friends, you know that I tried to befriend all adoptees and listen to their stories, I joined ASK and TRACK to understand their beliefs and help understand them. I read their books of Jane Jeong Trenka, and wept at some of the things they endured. I began to support FAMILY PRESERVATION (as does Holt, SWS, Eastern, and KSS) and promoting Domestic adoption, but I do not believe a child should NOT be told that they were adopted.

In Civil and domestic adoptions there are 97% that are NOW listed as Natural born children SO THE ADOPTION IS SECRET. Even MPAK Mission to Promote Adoptions by Koreans though they encourage domestic and Intercountry adoption into Korean Families living as expats, cannot make Adoptive Families be open and TELL the Child, or Adult that YOU ARE ADOPTED. Would you like that? Again, watch for Jeff's story soon, of a Late Discovery Adoptee speaks up.
But the problems are NOT just because of their Adoption, NO, it was compounded from the loss from mother and family, and they had other trouble in life because we were given up.
Those who think that 'FOR EVERY FAMILY CREATED BY ADOPTION, ANOTHER ONE IS TORN APART" are not completely correct. Not even close, show me the numbers. It is not EVERY rather some, more like a few.
 They declared me an enemy along with Molly Holt. They do not want GOA'L to be Neutral. What do they WANT?
***************************
Lisa Reed Guarnero
No democracy with GOA'L. They know most of us are NOT in Korea! Geez!! Feels/sounds like backdoor agendas or something.

MORE TO COME ON THE PLOT of
the Gang of 33...
 

March 29, 2010

Founding Member Speaks Out


"The world knows that thousands and thousands of unwanted Korean children, often hated by the general public, were saved from starvation, cruel deaths, or hopeless futures of unbearable discrimination and empty opportunity...because of a gift called adoption. Some babies and children were dearly wanted by their mothers,... yet still sent abroad, in desperate quest for opportunity, freedom, and a purposeful life. To ignore or discount the record is both misguided and foolish. But then, some persons deny the holocaust.

For every child saved through adoption, over ten died of starvation or illness or froze to death...or simply were eliminated as despicable by passersby. But the real trajedy is that they died alone, cast aside like the garbage they dug through and fought for as food (there even is a word in Korean for “garbage soup”), utterly alone and forsaken with no one to care.

Nolin Han Stratton-Founding member of GOA’L 

*****************************

 




Don: I will reiterate my statements of the past: I am a bi-racial international adoptee from Korea...who sees things positive or negative. In regards to adoptions from Korea. I consider myself one of the most fortunate adoptees and I know for a fact, had I not been adopted, I would not be alive to tell my story.  I have just celebrated 47 years being in the states. Issues of adoption whether domestic or international are very complex and there are blessings and there are challenges and I would never want to take away from anyone else's adoption experience.

I also do believe that there are just plain cultural factors with Korea. I believe I have given Korea a "pass card" for many decades and excused the country, the culture, the government for their inability to be open and truly accepting of the idea of domestic adoptions within Korea and thus children are placed to families internationally.

Special needs children, bi-racial children, babies who are born of unwed teen mothers....Korea has always had such a hard time dealing with these issues: Korea is now embarrassed by all these children going to other countries but there is not any options within the country so they slow down the process for waiting children??

The bottom line for me has ALWAYS been this: What is the better alternative to adoption whether domestic or international...foster care? institutions..homeless on the streets?.so much criticism on the adoption experience...but honest to God...what is the alternative...to have these homeless and special needs kids be institutionalized forever and then thrown out on the streets when they age out....or end up working in the orphanage or getting mistreated or abused by staff because they are seen the lowest of the societal totem pole and they do not have a voice.

What is the better alternative...for all the negativity and anger and feelings of rage....what was the better alternative...In the US...there are stats that clearly show the least successful of all groups of children growing up are the ones on foster care who get shuttled around from placement to placement to placement. 
 
Amazing that in the many decades I have heard the anti adoption rhetoric I have not heard any alternative or viable solutions from the opposition to help address this issue of homeless children.

Nancy A.
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Just some of the responses from Adoptees with various stories and experiences across the board. How about YOU, were you adopted? Do you think all adoption should STOP? Send me your stories, Good or Bad, across the board of the Spectrum of This Thing of Ours-Adoption.
Facebook days are probably numbered but KWB will continue to demand answers.

Ask various GOA'L staff "What is going ON?" 
************************************
Office & Support Staff

Secretary General
Mr. Dae-won Kim (adoptee, Switzerland)
Email:
sg@goal.or.kr [Languages: German, English, French, Korean]

Formerly known as Jan Wenger, Daewon Wenger


Vice Secretary General/ Interim Secretary General??
Ms. Katie Mee Joo Putes (adoptee, USA)
Email:
vsg@goal.or.kr 

Office AdministratorMs. Ji-young Lee
Email:
office@goal.or.kr [Languages: Korean, English]

Birth Family Search Department 
Ms. Gi-Young Hwang
Email: bfs@goal.or.kr [Languages: Korean, English, Dutch]


Mr. Sebastien Vanderlinden (adoptee, Belgium)
Email: 
bfs.eu@goal.or.kr  [Languages: English, French, Spanish]

 
Volunteer & Communication (Translation) Services DepartmentMs. Lydia Kim, Volunteer Coordinator
Email:
volunteer@goal.or.kr [Languages: Korean, English]

 
Sponsorship & Fundraising Department
Ms. Hangsoon Lee, Directordonation@goal.or.kr
 [Languages: Korean, English]

One GOA'L member asks:
Dear Don,

As a paying GOAL-member I did want to vote as well. For just that reason I had some extra questions to a future (maybe)SG, to Seth Hammontree. He was my favorite and we (several members from Netherlands) wanted to vote for him.

My question to you is if there were any questions asked to Seth at that meeting? (goal promised me to do so). Seth was denied a chance, seems it was just TOO complicated to set up a Skype connection, though computers were in the KOREAN BANKING INSTITUTE, I suppose it is just too technical. Go ask the Vice-SG Katie MeeJoo Kim Puties:

Vice Secretary General
Ms. Katie Mee Joo Putes (adoptee, USA)
Email:
vsg@goal.or.kr  
Putes Katie Mee Joo is confused with her role and title, doesn't know if she is the Interim Secretary General or still the Vice-SG. I asked her, ARE YOU in charge or NOT? You are supposed to be the Interim SG, until someone is appointed by the Board of Directors. She wants to meet me face to face, but I will not go to the office again. Never until this is explained to the Members.

I am Mad as Hell, and I am not going to take it anymore!
March 31, 10:00 AM

However, though I do disagree with some content of yours, I do strongly believe in a democratic way of leading a Foundation likewise GOAL. 

Gang of 33 voted to NEVER allow email, scanned documents of votes, or proxy votes in future General Meetings. WHAT? GO ask them. Former SG Jan Daewon Kim Wenger could 'only' say that it was passed. This is what happens when ONLY present members are allowed to vote. Global Overseas Adoptee's Link should change to : Only Adoptees in Korea adoptee's Link  OAKAL
YOU'VE BEEN BAMBOOZLED, TRICKED, ROBBED, OF YOUR RIGHTS, and it has nothing to do with ME, the Korean War Baby. It was my intention to withdraw ONLY after I knew that several good candidates were running. I was asked several time, are you withdrawing, you could just run as a Candidate for the BoD, or the Community Board (which is full of the Gang of 33 now. WHY was I asked to withdraw from the SG? Do you think I could have won ANY POSITION with the voters allowed to bring others to join as GOA'L members ON THE DAY OF ELECTION? 
NOT POSSIBLE: No, they know that I stand for Neutrality, and you watch, WHO WILL THEY APPOINT AS SECRETARY GENERAL?

The BoD cannot meet until Local elections are finished. With Molly Holt NOT re-elected the board has an imbalanced majority of FOUR, Pastor Kim DoHyun and Jan Daewon Kim Wenger plus two other Liberal Democrats. Gee, I will bet the SG will be a member of the Gang of 33. Mark my words. THEY want to Politicize GOA'L, please ask them for what?

For that; suddenly pushing forward a -new- prospect SG is basically saying to all the paying members: "I don't care a fuck about you!"

As well I did ask Daewon Wenger specifically to bring in the question of -voting new style-. I can proof that with email-trackrecord-! I said; GOAL should make it possible to vote even if you are not in Korea at all. Most of the adoptees do live abroad.

I wanted to vote but got a mail back from Vice-SG that was NOT possible. HuuHHH??????"

The Korean War Baby will not just go away quietly, Old Adoptees never die, they just fade away....WELL, I am Mad as Hell and I am NOT going to take it anymore!


 

Lucky or Not?

Korean women and children search the rubble of...Image via Wikipedia

For every child saved through adoption, over ten died of starvation or illness or froze to death...or simply were eliminated as despicable by passersby. But the real tragedy is that they died alone, cast aside like the garbage they dug through and fought for as food (there even is a word in Korean for “garbage soup”), utterly alone and forsaken with no one to care.





"Abandon in Korean language is PaRi Da 바리 다. it means to literally throw away, abandon as useless. Many of us were considered useless, whether you were mixed-blood or full blood, the Korean society and the families of you mothers and fathers pressured them to abort or give up for adoption. Some seem to think that only OVERSEAS or INTERNATIONAL or INTERCOUNTRY adoption occured. The KWB has found and posted the Ministry of Health Welfare and Family Affairs (MOHFA) figures that over 87,000 domestic adoptions have been placed. The Private CIVIL adoptions may number double the figure of domestic, and both domestic and civil adoptions are 97% Secretly done. Ask people from here Late Discovery Adoptees if finding out that you were adopted late in your life was agreeable to them. Thousands in Korea are walking around NOT knowing that they were adopted. THIS IS WRONG.




Lucky or Not?
Some distain the term "Lucky", "Saved", or "Fortunate to be adopted" and get angry, don't blame them for it is not something that most of us, adoptees want to hear, but many of us take with 'a grain of salt'. For many people still may think that way. Certainly for those of us from the Korean War, (born during or soon after) from 1950 to 53 then until the early 1960 Korea was a devastated land. As the economy improved the number of orphans decreased, yet something else began to happen.
SEX, of course they had it before but we are talking about openly among Koreans, outside of marriage. The relationships between UN troops continued until this day as US and other UN forces in Korea had liaison with Korean women (not all were War Brides) and left behind children. But as the sixties and seventies progressed women continued to give up their babies, for different reasons, such as female that were 3rd or 4th children born in a home with NO SON. Poverty became less of a reason yet it continued.
In 1973 the miracle of "modern medical science" and the Korean law allowed more Family Planning to help the country move ahead. Slogans encouraged "Two or Three is wonderful" when the average family was 6 at the end of the sixties. Abortion was allowed for 5 reasons: Rape, Incest, Physical deformity, Mental illness, risk to the mother. This produced a sudden drop in certain "Disabilities" 

Characteristics of International Adoptees, 1953-2007
Year              

       Male
Mixed-Blood
1972
3,490

212

1973
4,688

154

1974
5,302

??

1975
5,077

??
Well, what happened in 1974. OH, Mixed-Blood babies were no longer a problem, solved by Abortion...
Now look at this chart from my headline tag AdoptionStat_OAK:

Types of Disabilities, 1958-2007
Year
Abandoned
Split family
Single mother
Total
Male
Mixed
Disability
Total
연도
기 아
결혼가정
미혼모
남 자
혼 혈
장 애
1958~60
1,675
630
227
2,532
734
1,159
1,588
3,481
1961~70
4,013
1,958
1,304
7,275
2,254
2,659
2,064
6,977
1971-80
17,260
13,360
17,627
48,247
17,320

4,598
21,918
1981-90
6,769
11,399
47,153
65,321
30,460

16,378
46,838
1991-2000
225
1,444
20,460
22,129
12,009

8,987
20,996
2001
1
1
2,434
2,436
1,364

743
2,107
2002
1

2,364
2,365
1,679

827
2,506
2003
2
2
2,283
2,287
1,367

649
2,016
2004

1
2,257
2,258
1,385

705
2,090
2005
4
28
2,069
2,101
1,353

737
2,090
Total
29,950
28,823
98,178
156,951
69,925
3,818
37,276
111,019

Notice that Abandoned is 29,950 then add Disabilities 37,276 what does that tell us? Uh, calulator (calculator-sp ck)  is needed by KWB:
67,226 Korean Adoptees that WERE DEFINITELY NOT WANTED BY KOREANS. Were THEY "ALL"stolen from their mothers, child-laundered then adopted? Don't Think so!!!
 They were Abandoned, Pari da 바리다, thrown away by the Korean people. Mothers were left with little choice, We cannot blame them, instead forgive them, let them know we hold no hate for them BUT some, some of us DO WANT TO MEET THEM.

Only 2,450 or so have reconnected, with various levels and degrees 'success'. A few have faced rejection again, when family does not want to publicly announce "Who is that? You have a sister who was adopted overseas?" Go ask MAYA W.


Types of Disabilities, 1958-2007


Category
Total
Children without disability
Children with disability
Types of disabilities
Cleft Lip
Deformed hands feet
Premature baby
Mental disorder
Mixed blood children
Heart Disease
Etc.
구분
정상아동
장애아동
언청이
손발기형
미숙아
정신장애
혼혈아
심장병
기타
1958~60
4,120
944
1,588




1,588


1961~70
9,339
5,211
2,064
94
23
24
13
1,829
66
15
1971-80
52,845
43,649
4,598
361
634
1,532
54
1,292
312
413
1981-90
81,699
48,943
16,378
989
796
7,295
134
694
703
5,767
1991
3,188
1,206
991
74
41
506
16
23
24
307
1992
2,882
1,208
837
51
90
500
37
16
47
96
1993
3,322
1,258
1,032
59
56
543
61
12
78
223
1994
3,249
1,275
987
64
27
528
8
7
64
289
1995
3,225
1,135
1,045
77
29
568
7
7
58
299
1996
3,015
1,145
935
54
43
493
43
2
59
241
1997
2,841
1,273
784
40
30
422
19
7
57
209
1998
3,360
1,526
917
39
30
459
10
3
79
297
1999
3,234
1,584
825
29
30
354
8
3
82
319
2000
2,994
1,726
634
27
25
274
5

60
243
2001
3,179
1,693
743
13
26
367
50
1
71
215
2002
3,192
1,538
827
14
35
400
34

110
234
2003
2,936
1,638
649
5
21
338
28
3
107
147
2004
2,963
1,553
705
11
16
346
23

78
231
2005
2,838
1,364
737
4
18
301
29

106
279
Total
194,421
119,869
37,276
2,005
1,970
15,250
579
5,487
2,161
9,824

From Overseas Adopted Koreans http://oaks.korean.net/
Statistics-Stats on Adoptees
  
WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THESE FACTS?What shall we do with these Undesirable Unwanted children? The Korean War Baby DEMANDS ANSWERS!  Publicly you attacked a woman who has served since 1956 and she spoke not in defense. 

BUT THE KOREAN WAR BABY SHALL CALL YOU TO ACCOUNT FOR YOUR ACTIONS!!! WHAT IS YOUR PLAN FOR GOA'L, PROCLAIM YOUR AGENDA, PLEASE TELL OF YOUR REASONING AND LOGIC.
Kim Su R.
Kim S.
Jenny N.
Tammy C.
Eli Park S.
ALL OTHER MEMBERS OF THE GANG OF 33

YOU  WANTED THIS WAR, I BEGGED YOU TO REASON, TO FIND COMPROMISES AND UNDERSTANDING. INSTEAD YOU ARE TAKING OVER GOA'L. 
WHY, TELL US.
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