As usual, I am behind the times when it comes to the news and thoughts regarding them. Better late than never, I guess. However, the name David Banda came up in my Geography class when we were talking about Sub-Sahara Africa, specifically Malawi.
Of course, most people know the name. David He is the little boy Madonna and husband adopted the end of 2006. He is from Malawi, Africa. The CIA World Fact Book has some staggering statistics on this poor country. Most shocking is the median age is 16.5 years. The population is dying due to AIDS. Malawi is ranked among the least developed countries.
What struck me was the statement made by our professor that non-Malawian are not permitted to adopt Malawi children. According to the Dept of State, for a Malawi child to be adopted, the prospective parents must be Malawi residents and “Adoptive parents must foster a prospective adoptive child for 24 months in Malawi before an adoption may be finalized.”
Of course, controversy was running amok when all this happened as one can read in this article, one of many. Our class didn’t have any good answers either. When the professor said, “Madonna has more money than the entire Malawi nation.” and asked, “Was it morally right for her to adopt this child?” we had no better answers than any other person.
You have to figure that a $3 million dollar donation to Malawi is a pretty hefty one since it takes 135.96 Malawian kwachas to equal one US dollar in 2006. Yet at the same time, I keep coming back to the same question that many others have asked, “What about all the poor and needy children in our own country? As well as those who have no parents and live in orphanages?”
Tough questions with very few answers.