I've been traveling, so my post has nothing to do with sidewalk counseling. Instead, this article from the Herald Sun is about an Australian couple who aborted their twins boys, conceived through IVF, because they wanted a daughter. They have three born sons and had one little girl who died shortly after birth. Now, if this were just a case of sex-selective abortion it wouldn’t be news worthy. Unfortunately, this happens every day, though usually fetuses are killed because they’re girls, not boys.
However, the couple now wants to select the gender of the next embryos used for IVF which is illegal for non-medical reasons in the Australian state of Victoria. A panel was convened to review their case and they were denied an exception. They are now considering coming to the U.S. for the embryo selection because we do not have the same restrictions.
What’s most interesting about this case are some quotes from Gab Kovacs, an Australian IVF pioneer:
"I can't see how it could possibly harm anyone," he said.
"Laws should be made to protect people from things that are going to damage them. Why should we make this illegal? Who is this going to harm if this couple have their desire fulfilled?"
Except for the embryos. This law protects the youngest of children from being “discarded” just because of their gender.
“"You can abort a 20-week foetus but you can't discard a three-day embryo," he said.
And that’s the conundrum. Most pro-choicers are also feminists, so presumably they have issues with sex-selective abortion (and I do mean most pro-choicers, not the radical ones). They feel that abortion should be used when a woman gets in over her head, into a situation she feels she can’t handle. However, they don’t understand why a woman would PAY to get pregnant and then abort two perfectly healthy fetuses because they weren’t the right gender. And from that point, they’re less likely to approve of it on any stage of development.
From what I’ve read of the comments, most of them feel that embryo gender selection would be almost as heinous. (and they really, really don’t want this couple to be able to do it.) Part of this is because IVF is covered by Australia’s health care system (atleast in part) and they feel it should be used for medical necessities, not frivolities like gender selection.
Obviously, as pro-lifers, we see no conundrum. We're against discarding embryos and terminating fetuses (gotta love technical talk for "killing") regardless of whether they were persecuted for age, location, or gender. I hope that this couple receives the grief counseling they obviously need and that they spend some time appreciating the sons they have. They have gone a long way to replace their daughter. I wonder when they'll realize that it's not possible.