June 3, 2005

And again, I say: told you so

Will Saletan gets hip to The coming war over in vitro fertilization.

Since then, Bush's language has hardened. Last week, he called IVF embryos "real human lives" just like "the lives of those with diseases that might find cures" through stem-cell research.... On the House floor, Majority Leader Tom DeLay called embryonic stem-cell research "the dismemberment of living, distinct human beings." Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., called it "the slaughter of human life."

It's hard to see how people who think this way can go on tolerating the surplus creation, freezing, and disposal of millions of IVF embryos. If you think they'll leave it to you because you're the parent, you don't understand pro-lifers. They believe what DeLay and other House Republicans said last week: Embryos belong to "the human family." It takes more than you and your spouse to decide your embryo's fate. It takes a village.

You're just the embryo's custodian. Congress may decide it's better off with a different mother. "How do we evaluate which embryos should be allowed to be sent to research and how many to be adopted by infertile couples so those embryos can be developed into full human beings?" Rep. Marcy Kaptur, a pro-life Ohio Democrat, asked her colleagues. "Who will decide? Is it just a matter for the individual couple, or is there a larger, societal responsibility to protect life?"

Some pro-lifers have already decided. Louisiana has outlawed the intentional destruction of "a viable in vitro fertilized human ovum." A bill in Kentucky would make it a felony to "fertilize more than one (1) egg" during IVF. Five days ago, Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Kan., suggested that the United States should follow countries that "limit the number" of embryos fertilized in vitro to "one or two at a time." DeLay wants medical associations to require pre-emptive counseling to couples about creating and abandoning leftover embryos. Failing that, he warns that Congress's "next step is to look at" the issue. Thirty states already mandate counseling or waiting periods for abortion. The logical thing to do, if you think embryos deserve the same respect, is to mandate counseling and waiting periods for IVF.

Related, equally depressing posts on this subject.

Posted by Daniel Radosh


Get Married and Get pregnant and tell us something Yoou actually have a clue about !

Um, who are you addressing, MK?

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