The Short of It
One Million Moms group calls for boycott of the "American Girl" magazine after the publication runs an article about an 11-year-old adopted child with two dads.
The story, called "Forever Family," was published in the November/December issue of the magazine. It tells the story of 11-year-old Amaya Scheer, who is one of four black children adopted by the Scheers, who are white. The article details how Amaya and her brothers arrived at the Scheers' home as foster children with only a trash bag full of personal belongings. It talks about her father's charity, Comfort Cases, an organization dedicated to providing backpacks filled with life's daily necessities to foster children. And at the end of the piece, it features a picture of Amaya with her family, which happens to include her two dads: Rob and Reece Scheer, who are gay.
The group One Million Moms is urging supporters to cancel their subscriptions to the magazine, stop buying American Girl products, and boycott parent company Mattel because they are "extremely disappointed" that American Girl is "promoting sin." The organization claims that the article "would have been wonderful if they had not decided to include a large picture of a girl with her two dads...and three other adopted children." They then went on to say that "scripture says multiple times that homosexuality is wrong, and God will not tolerate this sinful nature."
As shocking as the extreme reaction may seem, Rob Scheer, once a foster child himself, says he wasn't surprised.
"I don't live in a plastic bubble," he told The Washington Post. "I am a gay man, and I have four African-American kids. I understand people out there are ugly."
What did shock him, however, was the fact that a group of mothers was speaking out against him.
"I didn't expect a group of moms to say we are sinners," he said. "I look at a woman and see someone who has given so much love to bring a child into this world. ... How could that same person look at these four children and say they don't deserve that unconditional love?"
Despite the outcry, Rob and Reece Scheer say their family has seen an outpouring of love since the article was first published Oct. 29.
"On Sunday, our congregation all stood to say that they loved us, they support us and that we are just like any other family," Rob said.
American Girl is also standing by the Scheers. "Amaya's story about her efforts to help kids in foster care is a perfect example of how one young girl is making a meaningful difference in the lives of others," said spokeswoman Julie Parks. "Our singular goal is to encourage, inspire, and unite girls of all ages and backgrounds, and we love shining a spotlight on their amazing gifts and achievements."