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Stirring the simmering 'designer baby' pot
Date:3/13/2014

prospective parents might make, sex selection for non-medical purposes has prompted the strongest policy response, "Murray writes. "It is prohibited in at least 36 countries, but not in the United States." He notes that "conflicts over the legal and moral status of embryos and fetuses have discouraged American legislators from proposing sensible regulations, lest they be drawn in to the abortion debate."

The absence of federal legislation has left the regulation of sex selection up to professional societies. But they have different guidelines, reflecting "clashing ethical frameworks for thinking about parenthood in the genomic era."

Murray calls for a national conversation about current and emerging technologies shaping the choices that parents have, beginning with an examination by the U.S. Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. "It will not be easy to avoid the quicksand of the abortion debate," he writes, "but it would be a great public service to provide a sober assessment of the choices that would-be parents increasingly face, and to encourage a respectful dialogue about the meaning of parenthood and the worth of a child so that parents and children can flourish together."


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Contact: Susan Gilbert
gilberts@thehastingscenter.org
845-424-4040 x244
The Hastings Center
Source:Eurekalert

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