I read a great and thought-provoking article by Hilary White from LifeSiteNews.com regarding the idea that people have “A Right to a Child”. White took on the position that with the use of artificial reproductive technologies (ARTs) we are now seeing children as commodities, rather than “a person in his own right”.
White starts off her article with a discussion she had with a young man over email. He asked “If I was pro-life, what could be my objection to childless couples increasing their chances of having children? Don’t people have a right to be parents?”
I really struggle with the idea of a “right” to be parents, or, in other words, a “right” to have a child. White does a good job discussing just why this should be an issue with everyone – pro-life or otherwise.
What about the rights OF the child? Does manipulating science to create children really take into consideration the well-being of the child that is being created? Not to mention, how many children die from the various ARTs in the very early stages of life. But, even for the well-being of the children that do “make it” – when I say “make it” I am referring to being born AND being satisfactory to their parents. It’s no real secret anymore that a child may develop in the womb only to be aborted due to a potential or real health abnormality… or for gender reasons… or the parents had a change in plans.
A young woman fought to change the law where sperm donors remain anonymous, regardless of the desire of the born children to know about their biological father, near the end of last year. An article in the National Post about this has a good closing statement:
Margaret Somerville, director of the McGill Centre for Medicine, Ethics and Law, says the gamete donor system as it exists now deprives donor offspring of their human rights.
“The problem is, donors don’t have rights,” she said. “You don’t have a right to donate your sperm. You can’t go around saying someone else has a duty to receive it. What we’ve done is given priority to adults’ wishes, converted those wishes into rights, and completely ignored the impact on the children.”
Barbara Kay, National Post writer, also wrote about this case and delves into it a bit more. Kay seems to be in line with Whites assessment of ARTs, “It is about the commodification of human life.” And, I’d have to agree.
I always go back to the fact that we have some great tools at our disposal to help women identify the obstacles preventing pregnancy through the use of natural family planning, and specifically NaProTECHNOLOGY. Here is one, of many, stories about how NaProTECHNOLOGY has helped families: A living testimony to natural fertility option.
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