This blog surely has no reputation for being on friendly terms with radical Feminist groups such as the European Women’s Lobby (EWL). Yet on rare occasions even they say something we can agree with.
This is the case with a submission made by EWL and other Feminist groups to the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH) with regard to the Conference’s ongoing work on a project called “The Parentage / Surrogacy Project”.
Although it is not quite clear on the basis of which mandate this is done, the Conference apparently is conducting this smug Project in order to promote the general recognition of international surrogacy agreements, which would not only lend the appearance of moral rectitude of, but also greatly facilitate, the abominable and inhuman practice that commercialy exploits the female body and turns children into a tradeable commodity.
Particular attention should be given to the following three HCCH documents, all stemming from the March 2015 meeting of the Conference’s “Council on General Affairs”:
- Prel. Doc. No 3 A of February 2015 – The Parentage / Surrogacy Project: an updating note
- Prel. Doc. No 3 B of March 2014 – The Desirability and Feasibility of Further Work on the Parentage / Surrogacy Project
- Prel. Doc. No 3 C of March 2014 – A study of legal parentage and the issues arising from international surrogacy arrangements
The view of EWL and the other Feminist groups in this regard coincides with our own: there are absolutely no circumstances under which surrogacy agreements can be accepted. Rather than preparing the ground for a creeping acceptance and legitimization of this abomination, the Hague Conference should start working for an international treaty to ban surrogacy agreements.
An international ban appears indeed necessary in order to prevent the surrogate tourism that has recently received friendly support from, of all institutions, the European Human Rights Court.
EWL and the other Feminists are also perfectly right in making a link between, on the one hand, surrogacy and, on the other hand, slavery and child trafficking. Indeed, the practice of surrogacy must be assessed in the light of existing international committments to ban slave trade and trafficking, and those committments must be clarified and reinforced.
Very unusual for a document drafted by a group that belongs to the most radical fringe of the pro-abortion lobby, the EWL submission does not focus exclusively on the rights of the women concerned, but acknowledges that children, too, have rights. Mor than that, it even admits that those rights apply not only as from the moment of conception, but even prior to that: this is what becomes apparent when the paper points out that in the case of a surrogacy agreement “the child is … submitted to a planned abandonment, since it was conceived for the purpose of being abandoned.” At the time of planning, the victim is neither born, nor even conceived.
While we at AGENDA EUROPE can agree with most of what EWL and the other Feminists have to say on surrogacy, the paper is likely to displease one of EWL’s main allies: the “gay rights” lobby. The submission comes timely just some weeks before the Brussels Pride Festival will provide the appropriate setting for a business promotion event of the international Reproduction Industry. The event, scheduled for 3 May, is called “Men Having Babies” and is specifically targeted on gay men in search of surrogate mothers.
Now this will certainly be a matter of vivid discussion between EWL and their friends from the Sodomite lobby. (Possibly the latter are split because Lesbians have no direct interest in surrogacy, whereas for gay couples it is the preferred method to get children). On this one we stand with the Feminists. However, the next time ILGA Europe comes out and stands up against abortion, we will support them. It’s promised.