New Deal Sparks Probable Adoption for Gay Entertainer Elton John

Liz De La Torre

With over 200 million records sold internationally (35 gold and 25 platinum records), 5 Grammy awards, and an induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, musician Elton John seems to be a booming, unshaken, driving force in the world of music. Yet, is it any surprise that with grand success emerges a bout of disillusionment? For Elton John, dealing with a setback is not something he’s familiar with. However, with his plans to adopt a Ukrainian boy being challenged amid extreme intolerance, it’s just something he’ll have to get used to.

Following a trip to an orphanage in the city of Makeyevka, Elton John and partner David Furnish became smitten with 14 month-old HIV positive Lev. Although adoption always seemed like a ridiculous idea for the couple due to Elton John’s taxing schedule, he insists that Lev touched him deeply, “Having seen Lev today, I would love to adopt him. I don’t know how we do that but he has stolen my heart. And he has stolen David’s heart and it would be wonderful if we can have a home.” The death of his keyboardist Guy Babylon also sparked an affectionate pursuit in Elton John to adopt as he celebrates the notion that death brings about hope for new life: “What better opportunity to replace someone I lost than to replace him with someone I can give a future to?”

Sure, Elton John makes an endearing plea for Lev, but if anyone thinks that being a parent, or a homosexual for that matter, is easy think again. Earlier this week, Elton John was adamantly denied the right to adopt due to his sexual orientation and age by Ukrainian law. Ukrainian standards require that the adoptive parents be married. And even though John and Furnish were joined in a civil ceremony in 2005, gay marriage is not acknowledged in the Ukraine. The Ukraine is also strict with the age difference between the adoptive parents and the child, prohibiting anyone older than 45 years whereas Elton John is 62 years old. To aggravate disaster, Ukraine described him as an inappropriate parent and “sinner” by the Orthodox Church.

With that said, don’t expect gay rights and adoption activists to avoid clashing. After all, the question of gay rights has been the subject of inevitable scrutiny for years. But despite public outrage over Elton John’s plans, Ukraine has negotiated a settlement which, upon agreement by all parties involved, would permit Elton John to be Lev’s legal guardian while allowing Lev’s mother parental rights to partake in his nurturing.

If all else fails for the famous singer, Elton John could always petition his way by singing his very own “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart.”