Monday, January 29, 2007

DNA Testing and Paternity

From Hollywood to here in Florida, there are newspaper articles circulating concerning popular and/or famous people involved with various paternity allegations. One of the more popular news items has involved Anna Nicole Smith who for months has vehemently denied that her former boyfriend, Larry Birkhead, is the father of her baby daughter. In other noteworthy news, Charlie Christ, the new governor of Florida, has recently denied that he is the father of a young woman who was given up for adoption 17 years ago. However, despite the denials by both Anna Nicole Smith and Governor Christ, neither one has submitted to DNA testing. Anna Nicole Smith has gone so far as to file pleadings in order to prolong a Court Ordered DNA test. I question all the drama and whether these denials and the refusal to submit to DNA testing are part of a larger fear of the truth, and the consequences of the truth. What's the harm in taking a DNA test if you are sure of the results?

With DNA testing as accurate as it is, I find it alarming when people are not voluntarily submitting to such testing in paternity suits where the best interests of a child are at issue. However, in cases such as adoption, I don't believe that DNA testing is appropriate or necessary. When a person gives up their parental rights in favor of an adoption, unless a person is interested in having a relationship with a child which may or may not be their biological child, DNA testing should not be pushed.

If you would like to read more about Governor Christ and the adoption case that has been in the new recently, see:

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