Forum to Discuss Bioethics of Parents ‘Ordering’ Next Child via Surrogacy

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Discussion of HBO Doc “Google Baby” at Metro, Nov. 6 in Theatre

By Sarah White

Metro Staff Reporter

In a new trend for couples, technology is taking the place of traditional procreation allowing people worldwide to “order” their next child.

With new technology there is a type of process that allows people who can’t have babies or those who want another baby the ability to place an order and pay for one.

According to a report issued by The Hastings Center, a nonpartisan research institution dedicated to bioethics, 7.3 million women are infertile which means about 12 percent of the reproductive-age population are unable to have babies. Infertility affects men and women about the same.

In a forum taking place at the Tri-C Metro Campus on Nov. 6 at 1 p.m. in the theatre, panelists will talk about the background and ethics of how couples have found a way to have a baby without actually having sex.

Technology has presented couples with the option of paying a surrogate mother to play host to a baby. In India women can register to become a surrogate mother that could pay them $12,000 to $30,000, according to the HBO documentary “Google Baby.”

For those interested in fully engaging at the “Designer Babies” forum, there are two more viewing times scheduled for people to watch “Google Baby” … Monday, Oct. 27 at 2 p.m. in MLA 102, and again on Wednesday, Nov. 5 at 4 p.m. in MHCS 116.

As shown in the documentary, a clinic tells surrogates that they will have no legal rights to the child even if they feel a bond with the baby. While some are in favor of this process others are against it. Tri-C philosophy lecturer Brad Lipinski said in the many showings of “Google Baby” there has been many different reactions to the video.

“Some think that it seems wrong and some who are business majors see the business side of the whole thing,” Lipinski said.

The moral grounds of surrogacy and ordering your next baby are still being debated on the world stage. In the United States, it is illegal to have a surrogate give birth to your baby but many Americans go overseas to find a willing surrogate to have their baby.

It’s been reported that some surrogates are treated like prisoners in some of the clinics around the world. This controversial issue is among the topics of surrogacy.

The student panel is open to the public and will explore the industrialization of human reproduction.

A new student club that will be chartered in the coming weeks sponsors the forum. “The Philosophy Club” will plan an interdisciplinary event and a fundraiser for a charity each semester. Students interested in being involved with this club can call Lipinksi at 216-987-4584.

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