Alliance Defending Freedom: It’s days away: The Supreme Court’s marriage decision is expected to come down on June 29.
The Daily Caller: I’m convinced that removing the gender requirement from marriage will expand the power of the state into areas that are currently none of its business and should never be any of its business.
Public Discourse: None of us can stop surrogacy on our own. I’m pro-choice and support extending legal marriage to include same-sex couples, but I know that if we are to succeed in ending the exploitation and abuse that comes with surrogacy, we must work with others with whom we may have vehement disagreements.
Zenit: Recently, the European Court of Human Rights issued a judgment in Paradiso and Campanelli v. Italy, which reveals a lot about the shady world of surrogacy. The court ruled that Italy was able to deny registering a child to an Italian couple because the child was born by a surrogate mother in Russia and had no biological genetic link to the couple.
National Review: Here are the facts: Unmarried Italian citizens—”L.G.” the “intended mother,” and “A.T.” the “intended father,” paid more than $73,000 to pay for “expenses” and “pain and suffering” to “J.J.E.,” the surrogate. She agreed to be artificially inseminated with A.T.’s sperm, to gestate any babies conceived, and then surrender the child and her parental rights to the intended parents. In other words, the baby would be the biological child of the intended father and the surrogate mother. In Tennessee such contracts are called “traditional surrogacy…”
The Federalist: While visiting some friends of mine whom had recently given birth to their new daughter in a Manhattan hospital, I couldn’t resist perusing the institutional paperwork addressed to the “Dear Mother, Parent, Person Carrying the Child.” Such a salutation represents a new and worrisome trend where both the meaning and definition of motherhood is being challenged by the rise of reproductive technologies.
First Things: What do donor conception, surrogacy, divorce, and adoption have in common? According to the newly-founded International Children’s Rights Institute (ICRI), they are all practices which violate the rights of children to be born free, to be raised by his or her biological parents wherever possible, and to have a knowledge of the heritage of his or her biological parents.
Life News: After the worldwide storm over baby Gammy, a child with Down Syndrome whose parents abandoned him with the surrogate mother after he and his twin sister were born, another case of baby abandonment has cropped up.
Public Discourse: In addition to the tragic stories of surrogacy gone wrong, there are families and surrogates with “happy endings.” It is important to hear these stories, too, and to respond to the arguments they make in favor of surrogacy.
National Review: In the wake of the Australian couple–and other cases–of biological parents who abandoned disabled children born of a surrogate, comes another story.
National Review: Surrogacy and IVF has objectified procreation. Now, it can be about not just having a baby to unconditionally love, but about ordering a baby that meets specifications.
Thai surrogate mother claims Australian couple demanded late term twin abortion after learning one had down syndrome
The Christian Post: The Thai surrogate mother who carried twins for an Australian couple claims she refused their alleged requests for a late-term abortion.
The Christian Post: A surrogacy clinic in Thailand is reportedly being investigated after providing services to a convicted pedophile and his wife.
Breakpoint: Last year, an Australian couple offered a financially-strapped woman in Thailand the equivalent of $11,000 to act as a surrogate to bear their baby. Hundreds of Australians make similar arrangements with Thai women each year, because it’s much cheaper than hiring an Australian woman as a surrogate. In fact, this type of “medical tourism,” or what you might call “bargain hunting for babies,” is common in many western countries.
The Daily Signal: Surrogacy remains a morally fraught issue even as an increasing number of couples—unable to have children naturally—opt to have a surrogate bear their children.
The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission: Surrogacy is the practice by which a woman (called a surrogate mother) becomes pregnant and gives birth to a baby in order to give it to someone who cannot (or will not) bear children of their own. A surrogate mother is a woman who carries and gives birth to the child of another woman, who is usually infertile, by way of a pre-arranged legal contract.
The Gospel Coalition: Last week, the issue of surrogacy returned to the news when Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindalvetoed legislation allowing for legal surrogacy births. Here are nine things you should know about surrogacy.
New York Law Journal: “A Queens man may legally adopt his husband’s biological twins even though they were born to a woman under a surrogacy agreement that is illegal in New York state, a Family Court judge determined. Judge Barbara Salinitro ruled that the best interests of the twins is the most important consideration in weighing the adoption petition of a man identified in court papers as ‘J.H.-W.,’ not that the surrogacy agreement that resulted in their birth is ‘void and unenforceable’ under New York law.”
National Review Online: “The current political landscape surrounding surrogacy indicates that as a nation we have failed to reconcile the undeniable realities of both motherhood and childbirth with our laws surrounding how these technologies enable collaborative reproduction and the building of modern families. Those who argue that this reflects merely a misunderstanding of surrogacy and a bias in favor of certain family models have yet to account for the medical and moral consequences of paying women to gestate babies for others. Until we have a serious public debate over commercial surrogacy, women and children remain exposed to exploitation at the hands of those entrusted with their protection.”
Associated Press: “Lawmakers aren’t giving up on efforts to create a regulatory framework for surrogacy births in Louisiana, even though Gov. Bobby Jindal rejected the bill last year. Surrogacy is the arrangement when a woman carries a child to birth for another couple.”
Wall Street Journal: “Women who become mothers through surrogacy don’t have an automatic right to maternity leave under European Union law, the bloc’s top court said Tuesday, but added that governments could put in place more generous arrangements.”
Christopher White at The Federalist: “How then are the children from such arrangements faring? Sally claims they’re beautiful, healthy, and happy. And I sincerely hope that they are. But a major study released in June 2013 in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry that examined 30 surrogacy families evidences that surrogate children, while not suffering from psychological disorders, show elevated levels of adjustment difficulties. Moreover, the lack of a ‘gestational connection’ to their biological mother or father may place children at increased psychological risk.”
Melinda Tankard Reist at Mercator: “What most concerns me is the complete erasure of the mother or mothers in these acts of global womb renting by wealthy Westerners. This latest case highlights this mother disappearance.”
Jennifer Lahl at Public Discourse: “Legislative battles are heating up across the United States on the issues of surrogacy contracts and the regulation of assisted reproduction. If we are truly concerned for the welfare of women and children, we must oppose such practices.”
Michael Hanby at The Federalist: “[T]he sexual revolution is, at bottom, the technological revolution and its perpetual war against natural limits applied externally to the body and internally to our self-understanding. . . . the argument for marriage as an affective union has been buttressed time and again in the courts by the claim that assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs), surrogacy, and the like eliminate any relevant difference between a married man and woman and a same-sex couple, from which it is but a short step to the conclusion that the state has an obligation to secure same-sex couples’ rights and access to these technologies as a condition of their genuine equality.
AP: “A Kansas legislative committee has commemorated an abortion-related anniversary with a live demonstration of ultrasound tests on two pregnant women and by agreeing to sponsor a bill restricting surrogate parenting.”
The Times of Israel: “Several dozen surrogate babies born, or about to be born, in Thailand — through the arrangements of Israeli couples — are unable to come to Israel because the Interior Ministry has not granted Israeli citizenship to the infants, according to an advocacy group formed around the issue.”
Boston Globe: A 58-year-old Utah woman is set to give birth in a few weeks — to her granddaughter. Julia Navarro is serving as a gestational surrogate for her daughter and son-in-law.
Catholic Culture: The Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church has issued a statement on the baptism of infants born to surrogate mothers.
Gay Star News: Liz and Nadia Harris had a full house in New Orleans for Christmas with five new additions to their family. The couple, married for four-and-a-half years, are now the parents of quintuplets – four boys named Michael, David, Maxwell and Joseph and a girl named Elizabeth.
The Independent (includes video): The sperm’s tail acts like a tiny outboard motor inside a metal nanotube; the resulting biobot could be used to deliver drugs and guide sperm to the egg
Global Times: The surrogate and egg donation industry has developed rapidly in the US as it provides healthy young women a new way of making money.
Rene Almeling at NY Times: How did we get to this point? Sperm donation has evolved from a practice of customized production to an industry that resembles mass manufacturing.
Kellie Fiedorek at Alliance Defending Freedom: Does it matter if you are the result of love and passion between your biological mom and dad? Or are you okay with your parents being donor numbers 548 and 2143? Would it hurt you to never know—or even have the opportunity to know—who your biological parents are?
Alan S. Newman at Public Discourse: “Eggsploitation” reveals the predatory practices of the fertility industry, which lures young women in need of money to undergo medical procedures that carry the risk of severe long-term health problems.
LifeNews: That crass market was the subject of a piece in the Daily Mail about an actress, named Robyn Young, who has sold her eggs repeatedly to help support herself as she tries to build a career.
AP: U.S. women are increasingly using donated eggs to get pregnant, with often good results, although the ideal outcome – a single baby born on time at a healthy weight – is still uncommon, a study found.
‘She gave her eggs, I carried the baby’: ‘Two-mom’ IVF approach allows lesbian couples to share pregnancy role
Daily Mail: Fertility clinics have put a new twist on how to make babies: A ‘two-mom’ approach that lets female same-sex couples share the biological role. One woman’s eggs are mixed in a lab dish with donor sperm, then implanted in the other woman, who carries the pregnancy.
Las Vegas Review Journal: A woman who bore a child from a fertilized egg donated by her female companion will get the chance to make her case for parental rights, the state Supreme Court ruled Thursday in a case unprecedented in Nevada. | St. Mary v. Damon
CNSNews: Ohio Republican Senator Rob Portman, who has a strong pro-life record and supports same-sex marriage, said it is okay for gay couples to adopt children, but he would not say what should be done with the “spare” human embryos usually created through in vitro fertilization, a process by which some gay couples obtain children.
NBCNews: Forty men who put their sperm on ice because cancer or other illnesses threatened to leave them infertile are suing a Chicago hospital after a freezer malfunction robbed many of them of the chance to have biological children, their lawyer said Wednesday.
AP: “They say they’ve always wanted to be a dad, they haven’t found a partner that they want to start a family with, they’re getting older and just don’t want to wait – the same things single women say,” said Madeline Feingold, a psychologist who has done counseling related to surrogacy.
ABC: Forty separate lawsuits – one for each of the patients whose sperm samples were allegedly destroyed while stored in a chamber owned by Northwestern Memorial Hospital – were filed Tuesday.
Rebecca Hagelin at Townhall: “Wendy” wonders about her dad. Who is he? Does she look like him or share his personality quirks? Does he want to know her? Will he reject her if she reaches out? After all, he fathered under the assumption that he’d never have to know her.
France24.com: A court in France’s western city of Nantes has granted the biological father of a lesbian couple’s child visiting rights, raising uneasy questions about how to share parental rights between gay partners and biological parents.
Alana S. Newman at Public Discourse: We’ve created a class of people who are manufactured, and treat them as less-than-fully human, demanding that they be grateful for whatever circumstances we give them. While fathers of traditionally conceived human beings are chased down and forced to make child support payments as a minimal standard of care, people conceived commercially are reprimanded when they question the anonymous voids that their biological fathers so “lovingly” left.
Harvard Law Bill of Health Blog: hould a man who donates his sperm to a woman so that she can have a child through medically assisted reproduction later be able to claim parental rights to any resulting child? Would your answer change if the man and woman had an on-again off-again romantic relationship in which they tried for years to conceive “the old-fashion way” before turning to assisted reproductive technologies (ART)? How about if the couple briefly reconciled after the child was born during which time the man grew increasingly attached to his biological son? These are the questions now wending their way through the California judicial and legislative systems.
BBC: The UK looks set to become the first country to allow the creation of babies using DNA from three people, after the government backed the IVF technique.
California Family Alliance:
AP: A woman desperate for another child forced her 14-year-old daughter to get pregnant using syringes of donor sperm, a British judge said.
Topeka Capitol-Journal: The U.S. Supreme Court five years ago sided with the Kansas high court that Topekan Daryl Hendrix couldn’t be a part of the lives of two children conceived by artificial insemination using his sperm.
LifeNews: There’s gold in them thar hills! Ounce for ounce, human eggs are probably the most valuable commodity on the planet, with highly intelligent and beautiful university women offered $50,000 or more for their ova for use in eugenic IVF.
Wesley J. Smith at National Review: Leave it to my state of California to head off in radical and expensive directions. Legislation has been filed that would require group insurance to cover gay and lesbian infertility treatments just as they do heterosexual. But, as I note elsewhere, AB 460 . . .
LifeSiteNews: A proposal by fertility researchers to “harvest” female gametes, “ova,” from the dead bodies of aborted children to create in vitro embryos in the lab has created a small buzz among the pro-life websites, blogs and Facebook in the last couple of days. But the buzz is over a story that appeared in the Daily Mail nearly ten years ago, about research that has very likely moved along considerably in that time.
AP: But a national ethics council on March 12 ruled that authorizing sex surrogates would essentially “merchandise the human body” and could leave recipients emotionally vulnerable.
Christian Concern: The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has advised the Government to permit the use of an IVF technique that would result in the creation of children with three parents.
AP: Britain’s fertility regulator says it has found broad public support for in vitro fertilization techniques that allow babies to be created with DNA from three people for couples at risk of passing on potentia
Bruce J. Clemenger at Evangelical Fellowship of Canada: Recently a fertility clinic in the United States made news for not only selling human sperm and eggs, but human embryos as well. While many responded with disdain, National Post columnist Marni Soupcoff questioned the validity of the objections.
The Express Tribune: Babies born to Indian surrogate mothers for gay and single Australians may be left stateless and unable to leave the country after New Delhi changed the rules on surrogacy, an expert has said.
LifeNews: When it comes to babies who are diagnosed with some sort of fetal abnormality in the womb, the pressure is high from doctors, family members and society to have an abortion. That’s why approximately 90 percent of babies with Down syndrome, for example, become victims of abortion.
John Smoot at LifeSiteNews: Yesterday I explained the problems that arise from commercialized sperm donation—namely degraded men who are absent fathers to children disturbed by the circumstances of their birth. Today I explore more closely the role that money plays as men’s greatest motive for donating sperm, and its impact on future children. I conclude by proposing how we can challenge the sperm-sale industry.
Topeka Capital-Journal: Citing a first-of-its-kind Kansas Supreme Court ruling made Friday, Topekan Angela Bauer on Wednesday sought the right to intervene in a case in which the state contends sperm donor William Marotta is legally the father of the daughter born to her former lesbian partner, Jennifer Schreiner.
Public Discourse: With money as the biggest incentive for sperm donation, donors are set up to be absent fathers. Politicians, charitable organizations, academics, and donors themselves should counter the ills of sperm donation through law, journalism, and funding for anti-sperm donation advocacy. The second of a two-part series.
AP: The case of a Kansas sperm donor being sued by the state for child support underscores a confusing patchwork of aging laws that govern assisted reproduction in the United States and often lead to litigation and frustration among would-be parents.
“Wanted: ‘Adventurous woman’ to give birth to Neanderthal man – Harvard professor seeks mother for cloned cave baby”
Daily Mail: They’re usually thought of as a brutish, primitive species. So what woman would want to give birth to a Neanderthal baby? Yet this incredible scenario is the plan of one of the world’s leading geneticists, who is seeking a volunteer to help bring man’s long-extinct close relative back to life. Professor George Church of Harvard Medical School believes he can reconstruct Neanderthal DNA and resurrect the species which became extinct 33,000 years ago.
Times of the India: In a first-of-its-kind step towards regulating the practice of surrogacy in India, the Union home ministry has issued stringent guidelines for visas being issued to foreigners seeking to rent a womb in India.
LifeNews: Colonialism used to be about the rich exploiting the resources of other lands. Now, biological colonialism (as I call it) finds well off (mostly) Westerners exploiting destitute people in developing countries for their body parts and functions, essentially using people as natural resources. Renting uteruses of destitute Indian women for their gestational capacities–just one form of BC–is apparently on the rise . . .
Fox News: A Kansas sperm donor who was ordered to pay child support for the baby he helped a lesbian couple conceive plans to fight back in court, and suggested he might be a victim of bias against same-sex parenting.
Aarathi Prasad at CNN (includes video): In an article in the UK’s “traditional values” tabloid, the Daily Mail, titled “A Terrifying Future for Female Fertility,” Djerassi said, “There are an enormous number of well-educated, proficient women who, when facing the biological clock, first pay attention to their professional ambitions…in the next 20 years, more young people will freeze their eggs and [sperm] in their 20s, and bank them for later use. They will do away with the need for contraception by being sterilised, and withdraw their eggs and sperm from the bank when they are ready to have a child via IVF.”
MyNorthWest.com: A leader of the effort to defeat same-sex marriage in Washington is gearing up for a 2013 legislative fight against paid surrogacy. Surrogacy is the idea that a woman will carry a child to term with the understanding that it will be raised by other parents. Surrogate contracts are generally allowed in our state, but contracts for compensation beyond basic expenses are prohibited.
Daily Journal: A sharply split New Jersey Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld a parental rights law that a couple claimed discriminates against infertile women. New Jersey law holds that an infertile man whose wife is artificially inseminated with his permission is the baby’s father. But it doesn’t give parental rights to an infertile woman whose husband’s sperm is used to impregnate another woman, even if the wife gives permission. | In the Matter of the Parentage of a Child by T.J.S. and A.L.S., h/w (A-130-10) (067805)
Wesley Smith at National Review: An unusual custody battle involving a surrogate mother and two Houston men is playing out in a Harris County courtroom.Cindy Close, 48, gave birth to twins at Texas Children’s Medical Center in July, but on the night of their birth she was visited by a social worker. “She told me we had a surrogacy situation,” Close said. “I looked at her and said ‘I’m not a surrogate, what are you talking about?’”
Susan Straight at NY Times: Sometimes life is like a fun-house mirror, the glass and then the real thing. I had just watched the TV show “The New Normal,” a comedy about what used to be called untraditional families, for the first time, and the same day I read about Mitt Romney’s son Tagg and his wife, Jennifer, having twins through a surrogate pregnancy, using the same surrogate mother they had back in 2009. A week later, a few choice remarks were made about single mothers in the presidential debate.