“We’re talking about the eradication of womanhood as we know it.”
- Professor Phyllis Chesler
A fresh hell has opened to us, courtesy of a New York Times article entitled “The Fight for Fertility Equality“.
What is “fertility equality” you ask?
Fertility equality” is the euphemism given to the effort underway around the United States to remove legal strictures on surrogate pregnancies and require insurers to pay for its often-staggering costs, particularly for LGBTQ people. The Times describes it thus:
Still in its infancy, this movement envisions a future when the ability to create a family is no longer determined by one’s wealth, sexuality, gender or biology.
“This is about society extending equality to its final and logical conclusion,” said Ron Poole-Dayan, the founder and executive director of Men Having Babies, a New York nonprofit that helps gay men become fathers through surrogacy. “True equality doesn’t stop at marriage. It recognizes the barriers L.G.B.T.s face in forming families and proposes solutions to overcome these obstacles” …
Mr. Poole-Dayan and others believe infertility should not be defined as a physical condition but a social one. They argue that people — gay, straight, single, married, male, female — are not infertile because their bodies refuse to cooperate with baby making.
I won’t dissect all the layers of lunacy in these few paragraphs. I will only point out that progressive liberals are once again playing word games, transforming ‘fertility’ and ‘family’ from natural definitions to social definitions. The result is outright contradictions, like the following from the NYTs article: “A category of ‘social infertility’ would provide those biologically unable to form families with the legal and medical mechanisms to do so.”
Pardon me, but I believe there are hundreds of thousands of LGBTQ men and women who have conceived heterosexually and formed families prior to “coming out” (without any “legal or medical mechanisms”), proving they are more than biologically able to do both. The barriers in this case are not biological.
‘Men Having Babies’ activist Ron Poole-Dayan (I just died a little inside typing that) is unwittingly correct when he says widespread commercial surrogacy for LGBTQs is the “final and logical conclusion” of progressives’ multi-front campaign toward equality of outcome in the United States. Equality of outcome–in this particular case the “right” of LGBTQs to biological children–brooks no resistance from science, tradition, or concern for the common good of a civilization.
Remember when we were assured that there was no slippery slope? That special legal recognition for LGBTQs would *never* result in gay marriage? And once gay marriage was foisted on Americans by the Supreme Court, that gay marriage would *never* undermine the traditional family or the sexual wellbeing of non-LGBTQ people?
We can put that one to bed: the slope is real, steep, and coated with a sheet of black ice sprayed down with silicon lubricant.
No matter how softly LGBTQ activists peddle industrial surrogacy or dress it up with social-justice cant, surrogacy threatens to reduce countless young women in economic precarity to breeding stock. Upcoming generations of American women in their 20s–many of whom will be unmarried and suffering under the COVID-kicked economy–will be sorely tempted to sell their bodies for a big payday.
A multi-billion-dollar industry is set to take off, as insurance companies put surrogacy within reach of the professional class; and sexual minorities make surrogacy de rigueur, rather than a rare exception.
The parallels to pornography and prostitution are hard to ignore. As Julie Bindel writes about surrogacy in general:
Supporters of the surrogacy trade — the medical professionals who see the dollar signs, as well as the wealthy infertile couples who can easily afford to buy a baby — would argue that women are paid handsomely for their ‘service’ and therefore not exploited. Essentially, they say, it is a woman’s right to use her body as a workplace — as a sort of vending machine. Their rhetoric is exactly the same as that used by pro-prostitution apologists. “If a woman chooses it, who are you to say she shouldn’t do it?”
Speaking of “a woman”: Louise Perry points out in her critique that “the word ‘woman’ does not appear once in the New York Times piece. Nor does the word ‘mother’.” Once again, this seems to be the “logical and final conclusion” of progressives’ project to reduce women to “people with a cervix.” Perry writes, “The truth is that, in the here and now, babies still need mothers, whether or not we refer to them by that word. And those mothers are startlingly absent from the discourse on surrogacy.”
In locales such as India, where surrogacy is big business, we find widespread callous, exploitative, and dehumanizing behavior. Bindel writes:
This is a deeply disturbing and destructive industry. As [academic Sheela] Saravanan’s research details, serious violations of human rights take place in the rent-a-womb market: women are detained in hostels with other surrogates, often sleeping several to a room, and told what and when they can eat and drink. Many are subjected to illegal sex-selective abortions. The women are required to sign a contract — the vast majority cannot read — agreeing to hand over the baby on delivery. Almost all the surrogate mothers in the study described the practice as a form of slavery.
Even if industrialized American surrogacy manages to avoid the darker abuses infecting other countries–and that’s a big “if”–surrogacy presents insurmountable issues, such as tearing away a child from a woman who has just given birth to it. LGBTQ activists promoting surrogacy seem to treat children as fungible items and mothers as merely “providers” in an emotionless business deal. It’s downright psychopathic.
Not to put too fine a point on it, but what in the hell are we doing to women in this country? The progressives’ idea of being “pro-woman” seems to be erasure of women altogether; and to reduce every one of us, man or woman, to generic, self-created, interchangeable “persons.”
Nature is traduced again and again in the name of state-mandated equality of outcome. Law and medicine don’t just control every move and breath of individuals; law and medicine put themselves above nature itself.
Now progressives want generic, interchangeable, self-created “families.” A civilization that used to value human dignity and believe in natural rights has pivoted to treating its people like Lego figures.
I can’t help but think of the movie Jurassic Park. When you jerk nature around, nature finds a way to bite back.