On the occasion of the freshly adopted Bill providing for the legalization of sperm and egg cell donation, the Austrian daily “Der Standard” has published a debate on assisted procreation with one article by a Catholic bishop and another one by a doctor running a reproduction clinic. Of course the latter is enthusiastic about the announced “liberalization”. But the headline the newspaper chose as a title for his contribution is revealing: “Everybody has a right to a child!”
Nowadays people are easily seduced by statements telling them that they “have rights”. It nevertheless is worthwhile to pause for a moment and contemplate what this man is actually saying. As it appears, “everyone” really means everyone, including single persons or couples who, being of the same sex, could never have children in a natural way. The mere desire to have a child creates thus an absolute and inviolable right for all who are willing to pay for it (if the next step is not going to be that the public, i.e. the health insurance schemes, will be asked to cover the costs).
In other words, human sperm and egg cells will soon be nothing more than some kind of “material” that can be purchased by anyone who wants to have a child “made” from them. It reminds a little bit of the procedures used for the breeding of pigs and cows, doesn’t it?