By Gudrun Schultz
WASHINGTON, D.C., January 9, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Doctors with the U.S. Christian Medical Association have spoken out against a Texas IVF clinic offering babies tailor-made to suit prospective parents’ specifications, in a press release Jan.8.
The Abraham Center of Life, in San Antonio, Texas, began advertising made-to-order embryos screened for hair and eye color, intelligence, and other characteristics last August. For a fee of about $10,000, couples can purchase an embryo that meets their preferred criteria.
The IVF clinic is buying and selling children, “grading babies like meat in a supermarket,” said Dr. David Stevens, head of the CMA.
“This designer baby scheme crosses ethical and moral boundaries by turning babies into commodities,” Dr. Stevens said. “By stressing the educational level of sperm and egg donors, this center is preying on parents who have fallen victim to the false notion that babies are a status symbol, and that intelligence, race or appearance are somehow measures of worth. Do we really want to grade babies like meat in a supermarket?
“This affront to human dignity shows why we cannot continue to allow such clinics to operate beyond moral and regulatory constraints.”
Dr. Gene Rudd, an obstetrician-gynecologist and associate executive director for the CMA, said the practice was straightforward eugenics, “the science of ‘improving’ a population by controlled breeding to increase the occurrence of certain characteristics. And we have seen in recent history where eugenics leads.
“Besides the ethical wrongs, this embryo marketing scheme also poses potential harm to women who undergo hyperovulation procedures to harvest their eggs.”
Dr. Jeffrey Keenan, IVF specialist and medical director for the National Embryo Donation Center, noted, “The creation of ‘designer embryos’ for sale to unrelated individuals is the commodification of human life for financial purposes by unscrupulous scientists and physicians. This activity is deemed unethical by all organizations who have addressed it, and is illegal in many developed countries. Human life is sacred and should never be bought or sold at any stage of development.”
CMA member Dr. Jeffrey Keenan, IVF Specialist and Medical Director for the National Embryo Donation Center, and a CMA member, said the practice should not be allowed.
“The creation of ‘designer embryos’ for sale to unrelated individuals is the commodification of human life for financial purposes by unscrupulous scientists and physicians. This activity is deemed unethical by all organizations who have addressed it, and is illegal in many developed countries. Human life is sacred and should never be bought or sold at any stage of development.”
See related LifeSiteNews coverage:
Made-to-Order Babies for Sale at Texas IVF Facility
Mafia-Run ‘Baby Factories’ Produce Made-to-Order Infants for Sale: Eastern Europe