Saturday, November 04, 2006

Misplaced Priorities focusing on Womens' Eggs versus Her Children

October 25, 2006, 9:16 a.m.

Chicks Protect Their Eggs
Cloning is a women’s issue.

By Kathryn Jean Lopez


“Wow. I never really thought about that.”

That’s the response Jennifer Lahl says she gets “over and over again” when she talks to people about “the women’s health and safety” concerns at the heart of the debate over embryonic-stem-cell research and cloning.

Lahl is a spokeswoman for a nonpartisan group with an international reach called “Hands Off Our Ovaries,” which seeks “a moratorium on egg extraction for research purposes until such time as global discourse and scientific research yields information sufficient to establish adequate informed consent.”

The organization was launched earlier this year on International Women’s Day in March as “a 2006 version of bra burning,” Lahl jokes. The movement is deadly serious, though: She hopes that the Hands Off Our Ovaries message — uniting pro-life and pro-choice women, conservatives and liberal feminists — can serve as a wake-up call to folks who have just never thought through the hows of such complicated and controversial research. Obviously, Lahl says, people know you don’t get the necessary eggs for cloning embryos from a basket. But unless they’ve had extensive experience with infertility issues (and egg “donation”), most busy Americans will have this issue completely off their radars.

Already routine at fertility clinics, egg donation is an unpleasant process that includes prodding and surgery; “donors” (sometimes highly paid) are given hormones to ensure they produce more than the routine monthly amount of eggs — more means a better shot at success. This largely unregulated industry (an estimated $38 million one) has paid little attention to the potential long-term harm from such hyperstimulation. As two bioethicists from Stanford declared last year in an article in Science magazine, at a minimum women should be made aware both that the risks include infertility and even death and that their “donations,” in the case of embryonic-stem-cell research and cloning, may never actually contribute to a cure for anything.

The Hands Off Our Ovaries cautionary message and call for a moratorium on hyperstimulated cloning research may have the opportunity to be heard like never before in the run-up to Election Day. In response to a dramatic plea by Parkinson’s sufferer Michael J. Fox for Missourians to vote against Republican Jim Talent because of his opposition to cloning (my c-word, not Fox’s; the gist of Fox’s disingenuous commercial for Democrat Claire McCaskill is, essentially, that Talent is a mean man who doesn’t like sick people, or at least doesn’t want them to get well), a counter ad is scheduled to air Wednesday night in Saint Louis during game four of the World Series. This ad may be the first time many Missourians hear of the egg factor in the embryonic-stem-cell-research debate.

A ballot initiative is the reason for the ad wars. Amendment 2 would write a constitutional right to human cloning into the state constitution, putting the complicated issue above the reach of the elected legislature.

The anti-Amendment 2 ad is a good, celeb-filled response to Michael J. Fox’s platitudinous and dishonest pull at the heartstrings. It features Jim Caveziel (from The Passion of the Christ), Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan, and others. And proclaiming the Hands Off Our Ovaries kind of message is Patricia Heaton, best known for playing Ray Romano’s wife on Everybody Loves Raymond. During the minute-long commercial, Heaton (who, as a spokeswoman for Feminists for Life, is no stranger to such activism) says: Amendment 2 actually makes it a constitutional right for fertility clinics to pay women for eggs. Low-income women will be seduced by big checks and extracting donor eggs is an extremely complicated, dangerous, and painful procedure.

Jennifer Lahl is hopeful, for both the short and the long term. Speaking to National Review Online from Oakland, Calif. on Tuesday night, she noted that she’s a veteran of cloning-initiative fights, having seen one pass in 2004 in California — but asserted that this time, she seems something different happening: “I really think that the egg issue is going to make a difference.” Back during the Golden State Proposition 71 campaign, cloning proponents “could get away with a Michael J. Fox ad.” This time, though, there is another side ready — one offering a coordinated message, and a reasonable, alternative sober message to counter the usual unsubstantiated hype.

— Kathryn Jean Lopez is the editor of National Review Online.

http://article.nationalreview.com/print/?q=MjU4YzkzZWJlZjUzZjA1ZGYzNjViYTNmN2YwNThhNTk=


What they fail to mention is that everything to do with woman's reproductive process generally involves some form of 'extremely complicated, dangerous and painful procedure'...that's just a fact of life.

My problem with this situation is that I'd hate to see women being denied the right to use donor sperm in the future if they wish to create families and haven't found a marriage partner at some point before they are 30. Since the flip side of making egg donations illegal is that it will also probably eventually lead to making sperm donations illegal as well. Especially since some estimates suggest that somewhere between thirty thousand and seventy thousand children are born each year as the result of sperm donations, and only about three thousand each year are conceived using donor eggs; thus it appears women could once again be getting the short end of the stick here.

So basically signing off on this moratorium could be giving away the farm for something that impacts very few women (if those estimates are to be believed.)

I personally feel they should both be legal as long as you are dealing with adults who know the risks involved. Although I wouldn't mind seeing the use of foreign women as donors be made illegal as this is exploitative of vulnerable women. Many of whom are forced into this procedure by the greedy men in their lives (who btw, also force women into donating kidneys and other valuable organs for offshore markets).

Interestingly enough no one (other then one professor on the columbia.edu website) ever thought to mention this aspect of donations of body parts...yet we are to believe that now everyone is concerned because women could be exploited through donating eggs. Nor has any of this crowd ever once mentioned the millions of mothers losing custody of their kids, since chicks also protect their hatched eggs as in mother hens. Yet I never heard of anyone suggesting a moratorium on that happening until we know the long-term results of that situation either.

Odd...really...for people who are suddenly so concerned about women.

Overall I think women have to carefully assess what limits they wish placed on their reproductive rights in this area and disregard the catchy slogans like "Hands Off Our Ovaries"...Not that I think every woman or even most women are going to use donor sperm to create a family with; yet it could eventually constitute a sizable minority of women who do this especially if men continue behaving like such stupid idiots in our society. So I don't want to close that possibility off to women who wish to be mothers.

Closing off those options to women, would result in placing our fates (and the fates of our children) back in the hands of men and the family courts system, which has not shown itself fit either in the past or present to rule on these issues...since children are a women's issue much more so then eggs.

Sadly these people seem to have their priorities mixed up if they think more women are concerned about the fate of an egg donation versus losing their children once they are born...

29 comments:

Joy said...

I don't understand your lack of concern about hte children, some of these children will be girls. And as a mother of a son, your misanthropy freaks me out

NYMOM said...

My concern is the children as the best place for children to be is with their mothers. The most obvious, natural, and most invested person in their welfare. Mothers raise the young of every species as well as our own...and the only reason men are trying to interfere with these natural rights of mothers and children right now is greed for money.

Quite simple.

AND just because my focus is mothers doesn't translate into (this phony concept, made up word) misanthropy...

This is just men trying to obscure the real issues here which is mother's rights to the children they alone bear...

Quit trying to make this about men as it's about women and children, motherhood...I'm sick to death of men trying to grab everything for themselves or make everything about themselves.

LeRoy Dissing said...

It is only about men in your mind nymom. Joy happens to be a woman expressing her opinion. The best interests of children is to be raised by both parents, not just one. I do agree with you that a mother's role is very pivitol in the development of her children, but you seem to totally discount the role of fathers. We both know that fathers have an important role in raising children - whether you admit it or not.

LeRoy Dissing said...

And BTW, men are not trying to "grab everything" as you claim. Perhaps some are, but the vast majority do not. So, in fairness, it seems to me you could at least say "some men" rather then catagorically lumping all men into one basket. And men have as much in the way of "natural rights" to the children they conceived with a woman. This idea of men interfering with the "natural rights" between a mother and child because of money greed is just so far-fetched; it reads like science fiction. I am not saying that it doesn't happen but you make it sound as though it is pervasive and I, and I think the vast majority, would fully disagree with you.

NYMOM said...

Unfortunately it is not just 'some' men but many men today who do this. It's connected with the imposition of federal guidelines for child support...

So it might not be accurate to say ALL men but it would also be misleading to just say some as it might lead women to believe it's some insignificant amount of men who do this.

I happen to believe it is quite a large group.

AND I also don't happen to agree with you that men have any natural connection or 'rights' to children as women do. As fatherhood is a total social construct.

Yet if women voluntarily wish to give fathers a role, I have no problem with it. What I do object to; however, is men being allowed to go into court, after contributing, risking, investing NOTHING in having these kids and then a court giving them equal rights with a mother.

Mothers rights are first here...everyone else's: fathers, grandparents, the rest of the village follow after mother...

But, if we are going to follow a strictly DNA construct for rights, then maternal grandmothers should have the same rights as fathers do...Since the DNA mix for fathers and maternal grandmothers is the same. AND I have a lot more confidence in a maternal grandmother then some some one-night stand to be concerned about the best interests of a child that resulted from 'bad boy' behavior...

NYMOM said...

"I think the vast majority would fully disagree with you."

Well that's what blogging is about, right? People putting their ideas, opinions, views out there to discuss.

BloggerNoggin said...

Through having full custody of my own daughter I see things a WHOLE lot different as a father now than I did when I would only see her 4 days a month. For the mother and my daughter, well, you know how the saying goes, "Out of Sight Out of Mind." The same goes for a father when he sees his child every other weekend, the kids get into sports, go out with friends and before you know it the every other weekend comes to an abrupt halt. Not because he's a bad father, but the sports and friends are on the other end, which is mostly at moms house. I'm glad my daughter can see what type of mother she has and she chooses to not visit most of the time or go to her home. Ah yes, they do think for themselves when they get older don't they. ;)

BloggerNoggin said...

Oh shoot! Sorry nymom, this was supposed to be posted on the previous post!

NYMOM said...

No I don't believe that for a mother and daughter 'out of sight = out of mind'...

That's what men like you want to believe. That if you keep a mother and child from each other, the bonds will loosen...

You, yourself told me you took custody of your daughter when she was 5 years old, so you would not have to continue paying $1,200 monthly to her mother in child support. AND that you stopped her from visiting her mother because you told the courts, she was saying bad things about you to her daughter.

Probably the truth hurt.

AND you are right.

When your daughter is older and knows the truth, then it will be up to her to think for herself about your worthlessness and act accordingly.

NYMOM said...

"...Sorry nymom, this was supposed to be posted on the previous post..."

Don't bother changing it.

Whatever post you put it on, my response will be the same.

You are worthless as a human being.

If you had any common decency, you would have jumped off the nearest bridge years ago and left your child and her mother a decent insurance legacy, at least.

BloggerNoggin said...

I'm doing what most women have done to fathers really nymom, and I'm enjoying it also. It's like I'm living the dream of every non-custodial father out there. It feels good, it's like having the world in the palm of my hand, plus, it's perfectly legal. I don't have to risk any custody order, I don't have to do anything I don't want to, I can just sit back, and let the black and white do the talking. Amen!

NYMOM said...

You really are a useless human being...

I think you just come on this blog because you feel guilty and like me 'beating you up'...like it's penance or something.

You must be a Catholic...and a very sick one...

BloggerNoggin said...

"No I don't believe that for a mother and daughter 'out of sight = out of mind'..."

Would you believe it for a father and a child?

silverside said...

It comes around.

I'm a non-custodial mother. I was stripped of custody 10 years ago by an abusive deadbeat.

My daughter, who was very much a daddy's girl, now tells me that her father is most useful to her as an example of what she doesn't want to be. She wants to go to college and enter a profession. Not sponge. She came to this on her own after ten years of listening to his charming lies and spin.

Bloggernoggin's daughter will get it too someday.

BloggerNoggin said...

Oh silver, your'e assuming at this point as well as stereotyping. My daughters mother has been in/out of jail for drugs. She's been to a rehab twice. One time, my daughter told me that "joe" (moms ex bf) was taking pictures of her in her underwear. You silver, along with nymom have no clue of what I've been up against. The only thing that you both have pointed out to me and others is statistics and the way you both think and feel about the masses of custodial men. I'm sorry to hear silver about it and it's unfortunate in your case. If me having custody of my daughter means nothing when a crackhead drunk mother should have custody instead is that then I firmly believe that you have something else on your agenda, and it's not the best interests of any child.

NYMOM said...

I don't believe you bloggernoggin as you never once mentioned this before...you claimed you only took custody because the child support was too high. Otherwise you said, you would have been okay with leaving her with her mother...

It's far too convenient now that you've been called on this to come up with the stereotype: "oh my daughter's mother is abusive..."

Actually I have yet to hear a custodial father ever have a good thing to say about his childrens' mother. So this is typical spin from men...trying to paint yourselves as rescuing these kids from an abusive mother when, in fact, many times men take custody because they are stingy cheapskates and just trying to get out of paying child support.

Like you...

NYMOM said...

"She came to this on her own after ten years of listening to his charming lies and spin."

Thank God...

Just imagine the amount of money she's going to save the taxpayers too when he can't get that EIC anymore...It's outrageous the way he's been allowed to 'juice' the taxpayers...along with you, of course, for his living expenses all these years.

We really need to pass some laws and stop these situations from happening. Many men today are trying to get custody to get all these benefits, credits and whatnot...I actually heard this woman activist on tv saying how horrible it was that men coming out of prison had no benefits because everything was linked to having custody of a kid...

AND I was thinking Yikes: now they'll be trying to get these ex-cons custody of kids so they can collect benefits...

Some male parasites are even trying to sue the WIC program now, so men can get benefits through that...although it's supposed to be about supplementing women (who actually do something to bring a child into this world and need extra nutrition) and the child itself...but, of course, now men want the extra food as well...for doing absolutely nothing...

It should be stopped.

BloggerNoggin said...

nymom, your'e right, I never did. I can go through the whole speil again, but I'm not. But, I think me taking away her daughter from her probably drove her to doing the things she's doing like drinking and drugs. However, I would be more than happy to share my daughter with her when she cleans her act up, but I don't see that happening anytime soon.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
NYMOM said...

Please you phony...save the bull for someone who believes it...I told you before and I'll tell you again: you are worthless bloggernoggin, totally worthless.

bloggernoggin said...

You are not phony-you are the ma-hating dyke hag you propose to be. Fuck you you 50 something failed educator, you are just sore you are a loser in love!!!

NYMOM said...

I left this comment up so people can see what an idiot you really are...get a life and get off my blog.

Anonymous said...

I smell blog being shut down!! hahahahaha

NYMOM said...

Dream on...

This blog will remain as is...

BloggerNoggin said...

nymom, it's not me. Sorry you think that was me but I don't do that to people. I have always debated with you in a civilized manner.

BloggerNoggin

bloggernoggin said...

Got you!!! It was me all along you fem-nazi leftist commie hag!! FUCK YOU!!!

NYMOM said...

You're one sick freak of nature...

BTW, have you been doing this on red state feminist's blog as well? Since she has a troll as well that uses a LOT of the same phrases you do...

Seek help...

BloggerNoggin said...

nymom, If you click on my name it takes you directly to my blogger.com profile, if you click on the idiot that's trolling in my name it takes you to an anon blog.
It's not me.

NYMOM said...

Well whoever it is you better tell him to knock it off...it must be someone who has it in for you as it can get you in trouble with your ISP if they think it's you.

As in spite of what many of your friends seem to believe, there are rules on the internet and you're not supposed to be cursing and carrying on...your ISP can withdraw their service from you for doing so.

Is there a teenager in your life who could be doing this???? As it almost appeared to be something a teenager might do and think it's funny.