UPDATE: Christie compromise will mean N.J. adoption records available in 2017

St. Paul wrote of adulthood as a time to "put away childish things," look in the mirror, and "know fully, even as I am fully known." But today many adult adoptees remain barred by outmoded rules from learning the most basic details of their own beginnings.

Fortunately, opening the door to such knowledge won't require divine inspiration. In New Jersey, a single signature will do. Indeed, Gov. Christie should sign an adoption records access bill before him now.

The measure strikes the right balance: It enables adoptees to explore their pasts but preserves birth parents' right to privacy, despite evidence that most won't insist on remaining anonymous.

The legislation has wide public support, and critics' claims that it will encourage abortion have not been substantiated. By signing the bill, Christie could further a fundamental conservative goal of minimizing government interference in the lives of families, both adoptive and natural.