“Keeping up” With the Selfish

Everyone’s entitled, right? After all, we deserve what we want, including the type of children we bear.

That self-centered attitude has been on full display with the recent announcement that Kim Kardashian is pregnant with a boy.

A media buzz erupted over speculation that the couple used in vitro fertilization (IVF) to ensure that husband Kanye West can have a son.

While the couple has denied it, the announcement has reignited the debate over IVF, especially using the procedure for sex selection.

Most of the commentary in the secular media has simply focused on how thrilled the couple is, with little or no criticism.

However, a few individuals have raised objections. Fox News medical contributor Dr. Manny Alvarez said he’s opposed to IVF sex selection to achieve what is being called “family balancing.”

He said: “You don’t balance a family because you have two of a kind. You balance a family with love, protection, education and guidance.”

Dr. Alvarez added: “I have also had patients in the past that have come for just that kind of sex selection, and I don’t want any part of it. Sometimes, it’s very hard to bring a life into this world, so whatever sex your child ends up being, you should cherish it.”

Noticeably absent from virtually all of the comments is any reference to the fate of the IVF-created embryos (children) that are not used.

During the IVF process, eggs are taken from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized in a petri dish. Then, one or more of the resulting embryos are implanted in the woman’s uterus.

Unused embryos can be frozen for future use, given to other would-be parents, donated for research (which results in the death of the child), or simply destroyed.

Georgia Right to Life (GRTL) believes that any IVF procedure that results in the destruction of human life is wrong and should be prohibited.

“Playing God in attempting to control the natural birth process is bad enough,” said GRTL President Dan Becker. “But casually destroying the precious lives of children for the sake of personal wishes is absolutely abhorrent. Children in the womb are not a commodity to be chosen according to preferences like the options on a car."

Despite this callous treatment of human life, there were more American children conceived by IVF in 2013 than ever before. A total of 61,172 babies were born as a result of 165,172 IVF procedures, which represented 1.5% of all births that year. 

Another disturbing aspect of IVF is that the practice is virtually unregulated, posing a potential danger to women.

Two professional organizations are the closest thing the field has to a regulator: the Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (SART) and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).

Every clinic that performs IVF is invited to belong to SART and over 90% are members.

Aside from collecting usage data, SART also issues opinions on various aspects of assisted reproduction, such as new procedures and treatments.

For example, it has recommendations for how many embryos should be transferred per cycle depending on the age of the woman.

However, doctors are not obliged to follow these recommendations and new procedures do not have to be approved before being used.

Worse, there are no restrictions on destroying unused embryos.

“What’s needed are biblically-based requirements to protect the lives of innocent children,” Becker said. “GRTL empathizes with couples dealing with fertility issues. However, we must make the public aware that the desire to become parents should not come at the expense of innocent human lives.”

Another urgent need is to bring a halt to sex selection abortions. To ensure that, Becker said he strongly supports S 48, the federal Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act of 2015, which has been introduced in the US Senate by Senator David Vitter (R-LA).

The bill, which has failed in the past, would impose criminal penalties on anyone who knowingly attempts to perform an abortion knowing that the procedure is being sought based on the sex or gender of the child.

The measure has languished in the Senate Judiciary Committee since being introduced in January.

Such a law is needed because the entire concept of sex selection abortion embraces two evils: aborting unwanted babies—usually girls—and destroying unwanted, artificially-fertilized embryos, again, usually girls. The United Nations estimates that “100 million girls around the world are missing.”

“I encourage pro-life supporters to contact Senators Johnny Isakson and David Perdue and urge them to work for the passage of S 48,” Becker said.  

Sources: businessinsider.com; cnn.com; foxnews.com.

By Wayne DuBois

Media Relations Advisor