Friday, July 29, 2016

Eugenics? Whoopie

I am aghast at this article on Mom Jones, that interviews a guy who lauds the selection of embryos to get your perfect baby.

Greely believes embryo selection will become popular in the United States. "My guess is more than half of babies are likely to be conceived this way," he predicts.

Uh, fellahs: To get an egg, mom has to take medicines that make her ovulate (and get emotional and fat). Then she needs an operation to remove the eggs. Then she needs to go to the office and get them implanted. And one to two thirds of the babies won't "take". If you implant a couple, yes there is a higher chance of getting a kid, but sometimes you get two (or three).

Infertile women will do this, of course. But it's a dirty little secret that a lot of IVF is done when less "intrusive" treatments might work...but IVF makes docs rich, and moms happy, because it's quicker.

But routinely? Nope.

And what about all those discarded embryos? This is a major ethical problem no one wants to discuss...

I was surprised that Mom Jones, who usually opposes artificial GM food, artificial fertilizers, herbicides, chemicals and all sorts of artificial interventions into human life seems to be pushing artificial manipulation of human beings. (Probably they interview him without editorializing, but the writer gets fuzzy on why anyone would oppose this practice).

Catholics, of course object to IVF because of the reason he posits: His book is called "the end of sex" meaning that now you can have a kid without making love.

Separating sex from reproduction is a no no, be it by the pill that gives you sex without a baby, or IVF that gives you a baby without sex. (and I won't even go into the lucrative baby making that uses desperatly poor women to carry someone else's baby to term.).

Like marriage, they stress the biological basis of family, lovemaking, and baby making, as God's gift to humans.

But the summary of how this guy and many others have lost the moral vocabulary to even discuss the moral issues can be found in this quote

After all, he says, "You want to get the best car. Why don't you want to get the best baby?"

Well, maybe because a because a baby is not a "thing" to be bought, but a person to be loved and cherished. By not seeing babies as persons, it is implied that you can return them if defective (which is what is done by discarding embryos, and has been done by parents who refuse to accept an imperfect baby or twins etc. gestated by a pay-for surrogate mother)

And, of course, I'm old enough to remember that when one grew up and married, that babies weren't planned, but just came along and were accepted and welcomed. Kids were considered part of one's vocation of being married, and even among the non "religious", there was the idea that well, God had a plan for the kid even if he/she came at an inconvenient time.

Eugenics rears it's ugly head.

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