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Your View: Should We Artificially Create Life

Cyn . . . Comments

This ‘your view’ is prompted by this evening’s national news here in the US. There was a story about the status of the latest multiple births of 8 babies. The exact details of the story are not my focus but the closing commentary of the news show regarding the ethics involved in multiple births. I am assuming although I have not kept up with the details, this instance of multiple births was as a result of artificial means rather than a natural occurrence. Given that the commentator cited multiple ethicists who were all in agreement that this was not ethical due to the various dangers and costs to mother, family and babies, near term and long term, I think it is a safe assumption.

So my question to you is just that is it ethical for humans to artificially create human life as in the means used to have a multiple outcome of 8 babies? Frankly, the exact number is irrelevant; it is the method of conception of life that is my real concern.

Is it ethical to artificially create human life?

The choice of wording in that last sentence should give a hint as to my own opinion. I do not endorse artificial means of conception nor would I ever advise a woman seeking my counsel to pursue such a course of action to have a baby. Given that I am an atheist and major fan of science that might come off as rather odd. Contrary to popular belief, atheists are moral and ethical so it is possible for us to be morally or ethically conflicted as anyone else. Even as a firm supporter of the scientific method I can still be concerned that simply because science can do something, should it. I would advise either coming to terms with her inability to conceive or pursue another avenue for creating a family like adoption. You will notice I am not addressing the paternal side of this issue only the maternal. Which does not mean I do not welcome men’s opinions on this matter, so please do comment.

For the sake of brevity, let me wrap this up by saying I fully understand the gravity of this question. It is not a question to be taken lightly. It is one encumbered with many different issues from the elitism of being financially capable of incurring the enormous cost of something like artificial insemination to the ethical considerations of just being able to create life outside of natural means.

Contributor: Cyn

  • co0lie

    feels like shes cheating, creating those octuplets

  • i think that it is the mothers choice. if she is capable of rasing more than one child then why not?

  • danmoo

    yes yes yes

  • ringtailroxy

    as one atheist to another, thanks for this topic! I also believe that this whole business of fertility treatments, in-vitro fertilization, and embryo transfer is a bit to sci-fi for my tastes.

    i do not support fertility treatments to ensure a woman has children. if your body was not biologically capable to bear children, then there is likely a good reason for it!

    also, it might be wise to see exactly where the major ethical considerations went awry in the case you speak of-seems the mother of the octs already has 6 other children, is unmarried, lives at home with her parents, and has had all the children by in-vitro!

    craziness, huh? how, exactly is she going to fund the dreams of 14 children? she’d have to buy a bus just to take them all to the mall! the biggest concern is that the family cannot support the children, and will rely on public & government assistance.

    i just thought humans needed large families years ago to help with the family farm or to ensure survival of at least one or two offspring… not to start your own family softball team!


  • Kase

    Yes and no I guess.

    I can’t just say yes, because I agree with the “just because science can do something should it?” (Atomic Bombs dudes)

    But I can’t say no because, I’m not a woman. And I imagine being a woman who desires to have children, but can’t through natural means being told “No” to what could be her only real chance at having a child would hurt in some way I couldn’t understand.

    Eh. I don’t know.

  • Cyn

    5. ringtailroxy –
    yw :)
    and yeah, that particular story becomes more tragic by the day. getting lotta press coverage stateside. not sure how its playing out around the world.
    the genie is definitely outa the bottle on this and there is way too much money to be made so i don’t see it stopping any time soon if at all. then there is this whole cultural pressure to least here. and definitely fueled by our religious heritage and just such a complex issue because of it.
    i love science. but this whole thing scares the hella out me. anything in human hands..religion or science can become so perverse, so contrary to its origins as to become unrecognizable. and so destructive.
    and it seems like we keep escalating the body count and damages w/ each new level of any new technique. fire was just burning acreage. maybe few dozen dead. ramp that up to nuclear. you got millions dead. and damage that extends into future generations.
    now we’re mucking about w/ the very essence of human life. so who knows…..

  • greg

    It’s fun to rant about your ethics, right? Too bad it gets us no where. Personal ethics mean little in the long run. The question really is not “do you believe in artificial creation?” it should be “should atrifical creation be allowed.” The answer is yes. If science can do something, and people can have a choice in a matter, they should have the right to, and that’s the best mnorality. Let people have any SOCIAL (not always economic) freedoms they want, as long as they don’t infringe on the social freedoms of others. That’s the best ethical code of all.

  • Lauraleeplease

    I’m going along with the question of just because science can do something should it thing here….
    I mean I understand if you want to have a baby but geez 8?! thats going a little overkill. also, if you can’t do it naturally then why try and risk it by doing it the artificial way? You have to think of those kids and not just yourself when you make that decision.

    I know tons of women who have wanted a baby and tried and tried, a few turned to in-vitro and it didn’t work, and a few adopted. I think that is the best measure honestly….why spend potentially twice as much just getting maybe a chance at being pregnant rather than saving a child from a life of feeling unloved?

    A friend of mine is adopted and his mom said that it was the best thing she has ever done because you can’t imagine how these kids grow up without love and feeling abandoned. Whether you adopt from the US, China, Russia or wherever, consider that first I think.

  • Lauraleeplease

    greg: Very nice point you have.

    I just want to add something here….I’m not saying it shouldn’t be allowed or it should be illegal or banned. people should have that choice, I just wish instead of jumping into this wonder cure that sounds amazing they would look around first and explore other options…

    Kids are our future, and how would you feel if you were left alone with no one to guide you and you see people spending thousands of dollars to create something when there are thousands of chances to save a person that’s already there…no science needed….

  • Scaramouche

    They haven’t even released whether or not she used fertility drugs, and even considering, I don’t see how it’s unethical. It is her own eggs with another person’s sperm, it’s just skipping the sexual contact part. This is a decision that many people come to because it’s their last hope. I don’t get the argument.

  • SnowKid32

    IMO I don’t see the problem with creating life. Playing god? Are you kidding me? Think about the outcome we can have with artifical births. We can be more resistant to diseases, choose all prolific features and outcome and stuff. I know I’m making some utopian society here but just think what if, no, what is the problem? Is there one? I just don’t see that big of a problem? Overpopulation? Like torturing a baby with the results sure, but you can’t control really anything these days.

  • Scaramouche

    I don’t think this form of artificial birth is a good example of creating artificial life. This is nowhere near the plot of Gattaca.

  • apple464

    I think it is their right to choose how to have children. It can be very difficult and expensive to adopt, so if they are unable to have kids, why not? I know people who have tried for years to adopt with no success, and then turned to technology, which can be a miracle if you can’t have kids on your own. I agree with exploring adoption first, but sometimes it just doesn’t work out.

    There are just so many other worse issues, giving a child to loving parents just doesn’t seem like a problem. It’s not like others having children this way personally affects us, so who are we to judge?

  • Abbey

    I agree w/ apple464. As someone who has seriously considered and researched adoption, i can tell you, it is not always an option. Financial, social standing, and marital satus may exclude some people, as will their physical health. I’d also like to point out that conservation efforts for some endangered species of animals have used invitro, and artificial insemination methods to bring back populations. Is this unethical? If not, then how can it be unethical for humans. The doctors that argued about the ethicalness of Nadya Suleman’s pregnancy, were not arguing against in vitro or artificial means, but the number of embryos implanted. The number of embryos could have endagered hers, and the lives of each baby. Multiple birth children tend to have more health problems then single births, and those health problems can increase the higher the amount of multiples in one pregnancy. As well i would like to point out that it has been over 20 years since the first in vitro fertilization, yes it has been debated, but is hardly new news. Finally speaking from a personal note, it is not perhaps the first desirable method, natural conception would be perfect, but is not always possible. I myself have been unable to concieve naturally due to medications prescribed for health problems, the same health problems that prevent me from adopting. I am not able to concieve, that does not mean i am unable to parent. I believe i have every right to raise a family with my husband, and am currently looking into using a surrogate mother (my best friend suggested it to me, and suggested herself). Yes my husband, my friend, and myself know that there can be risks, but do not feel it is unethical. We do not want a multiple birth, in fact i would not dream of endangering someone that way, we just want 1 and if medical science can assist us without killing or causing harm to someone else, i fail to see how that is unethical.

  • Frank

    Of course. Ethical is what we say it is.

    Then again, I personally would like to see a license to procreate – something that will be an actual possibility once birth control becomes advanced enough. Your possibility of getting a license for more children would depend on an evaluation of the psychology of your current one, as well as your economical and relational factors.

    Imagine that… in one fell sweep we could eliminate a vast majority of bad upbringings, make sure every child is wanted and well taken care of.

    What a utopia that would be.

  • Darshan Chande

    I think it is completely unethical to use artificial means to create human lives. In the last 10000 years human population has already increased much more than it was prior to that. It is unnatural and the effects of it are already being felt through many evils including global warming (Ref: The Inconvenient Truth) And it we go on creating humans artificially now, then guess some day we will only have humans on this planet, full of suffering.

  • DC

    My opinions about the woman who gave birth to 8 babies aside, I don’t think its fair to say whether its right or wrong if you’ve never been in the situation where you can’t have children. Having said that, I do believe that adoption is the best, but not always possible, method. However it really is up to the woman, and if I ever find myself in this situation I don’t even know what I would do…you just don’t know for certain til its happening to you

  • stevek

    I don’t see any problem with artificial insemination, it just takes the fun part out. My problem is with genetic engineering, how can they know what will happen when these altered genes move into the general population.

  • archangel

    To those who have a disagreement against a lot of children… you have no right to dictate against the desires of others as long as it does not infringe on your rights or the rights of others. Furthermore, it was not uncommon to bear many children until now.

    To those who say that biologically incapable women should not bear children, and probably for good reason… that is just complete arrogance. You do not know these women and there are many more child-bearing-capable women who should morally not be allowed to bear children. Furthermore, one of the purposes of medical science is to give opportunities to those who have been deprived of it, in average. For example, we try to help people born with disabilities to live a normal life.

    Therefore, I have no qualms against safe artificial insemination. Besides, is there really a profound difference other than methodology on something that is artificial versus something biological? Both produce children and I would not differentiate the two, indeed, they are both humans. Both are from biological eggs and sperm cells.

    I guess where it all begins to blur is when genetic engineering comes into play as some have said above – i.e. when artificially-created cells (sperm and egg) are created (of course most likely with DNA compatible to the parents). And when DNA engineering is possible.

    I have my views on genetic engineering but i’ll save it some other time as my post is getting too long xD.

  • Stizzy

    In a society where morals and ethics are becoming increasingly relative, who’s to say what is ethical and what isn’t unless we appeal to some greater source of authority or a greater ethical standard?

    I believe in a case like this, the persons motivations need to be considered, and also, if there is a husband involved, it is NOT just the woman’s body. If she really cares about her husband, she won’t do anything so widely outside his will without good reason.

    Back to motivations, does she want 8 children as a novelty or because she truly wants to raise wonderful individuals? If she’s a loving, dedicated mother, she’ll generally produce decent children and we need more in this world frankly.

    But some women act out of desperation, selfishness and greed. Desiring something that perhaps isn’t meant for them, and rather than truly considering the consequences and the possibilities, they fall in love with the idea itself. It moves from being a desire to an obsession and obsession is a dangerous thing. You lose sight of priorities and what’s right.

    Someone said that no one can say anything about this woman’s desires because they’re not her. Are we not all human? She is not an entirely different species that we have absolutely no idea. It doesn’t take a genius to be able to see and make a call on something questionable. If anything, we NEED people outside our own personal spheres to snap us out of short sightedness sometimes. We need an outside opinion to see the bigger picture.

    But we are so consumed by our own lives and “looking after number 1” it’s like we don’t share the same country, earth or universe, but it’s our own to do with as we will. It’s not.

    So yes, to me I believe we should take advantage of the benefits of scientific discovery as we’ve been blessed with minds capable of doing so. But I believe our inner motivations and actions following this can determine what is ethically sound. It’s a bit of a grey area so I’d be inclined to say, if it can be avoided, it should be, but can’t say whether it’s out and out WRONG.

  • CowzRppl2

    Sure, why the hell not.

  • Jono

    No human life was “artificially created” in your example.

    That’s basically saying that bees “artificially create” flowers because they pollinate them.

    The argument is fundamentally flawed.

    But your gist, that artificial insemination is wrong and unnatural because these people couldn’t naturally harks back to the days of eugenics. Our society has abandoned and forgotten the ways of eugenics because it was deemed immoral to “speed along evolution” through selective breeding of humans.
    Funny that you “immoral sayers” want to do it all over again by persecuting certain individuals who exercise their right to procreate.

    I think the line should be drawn at modifying genetic information of gametes. Not using some pipettes to suck up sperm and squirt it out again.

  • M

    “i do not support fertility treatments to ensure a woman has children. if your body was not biologically capable to bear children, then there is likely a good reason for it!”

    I really don’t get this argument. A good reason for it? You mean Big Guy in the Sky doesn’t want you to have a baby? Does that mean that if you get cancer because the tendency is in your genes then maybe you shouldn’t treat it because “there is likely a good reason for it”?

  • akira

    Generally speaking, I’m a big supporter of choice. I don’t think the question of ethics applies to a woman who can’t conceive but wants to.(The last thing on her mind is ethics.) If advancements in science such as invitro will allow her to have children and she chooses to use these options, who are we to question it? It’s wrong to tell a woman that she should just accept the fact that she can’t have children. How the hell could anyone with a heart do that?

    …There are people that will disagree with every little thing.

  • chris

    I was reading the telegraph today and it claimed that an extinct Ibex was successfully cloned from frozen tissue samples. how long will it be now until the ban against human cloning is reversed. What about those people cryogenically frozen, wouldn’t cloning bring them back to life? would that be ethical? I think that there are no easy answers when it comes to interfering with the natural order of things. My friends mother suffers from debilitating Parkinsons disease. twice now she has travelled to China to receive illegal stem cell treatment and for several months following her treatment she is almost normal again. Is that ethical?

  • Ant-LOX

    I think a woman who can’t naturally produce a child, will go to whatever lengths to have one. Hey, if she wants 8, then let her have them. I don’t think that’s unethical at all, however, if she can’t afford 8 children, then that’s where the problems begin.

    On the issue of cloning and creating artificial life, I hate to sound cruel, but humans need to experiment on humans a whole lot more. If we want to advance, we need to know more about how our brains and our bodies work. Lab mice can only go so far.

    I always thought, what if scientists created a line of humans just for experimental purposes? They could always give them some sort of historical recognition for their sacrifices for science.

    I actually wouldn’t mind going through a few experiments myself, if it would help out the human race.

  • deepthinker

    I can’t see how anyone would want to have 8 babies at once, and I am not familiar with the whole story, so I can’t really be the judge. However, I think fertility treatment is ethical and should be available to those in need. My husband’s cousin has undergone fertility treatments with no luck, and I know that she was meant to be a mother. I would actually consider being a surrogate for her. But, as far as creating life for purposes of scientific research and such, well that is another story. There should be a line drawn somewhere.

  • Spange

    I don’t see artificial means of insemination as being unethical or immoral. It’s just facilitating a natural process. Although the initial paragraphs introducing this discussion highlight the possible inability of the woman to conceive, sometimes it is not her problem but her partner’s. Medically each case should be assessed for feasibility individually as I’m sure it is. It would be unethical say if a medical practitioner took money for artificial insemination that had no possibility of working but otherwise I can’t see a problem with it.

    As to whether people of questionable means should be prevented from using such services to procreate – it seems that it would be immoral to help people bring children into the world that they cannot adequately care for but seeing as people who have no problems conceiving are allowed to procreate at will regardless of circumstances it would really be unethical to deny certain people the rights others have as a matter of course. I wonder if it would even be legal to essentially discriminate against people based on their social and economic status.

    Personally I would say it’s irresponsible to have a child you cannot afford to keep or have the time to raise well. I would imagine though that most people who go through the expense and often much heartache to have children artificially are both financially capable of raising their offspring and desirous enough of having that child that it would be cherished greatly. I suspect the case of the mother with 8 children is more of an exception rather than the norm.

  • ringtailroxy

    let’s clear something up. seems like alot of people here are confusing the definitions of ‘ethical’ and ‘moral’

    Ethical~ of the study of right & wrong or an acceptable code of conduct for professionals.

    Moral~ of, pertaining to, or concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong. often with religious basis for behavior or retribution.

    from Wikipedia, referencing Peter Singer:

    ‘A central aspect of ethics is “the good life”, the life worth living or that is simply satisfying, which is held by many philosophers to be more important than moral conduct.’

    back to the topic-

    maybe i was heartless earlier. if a loving couple wanted a child, and they couldn’t conceive, then maybe a little help form a fertility clinic is acceptable. but not to the tune of an unwed mother living with her parents having 14 kids, all conceived in a lab!

    yes, throughout history families had many children… for 4 reasons!
    1.) mortality rates for infants & children where high, and the more you have, the more likely one or two (or more!) might reach adulthood!
    2.) women lived shorter lives, and often started reproducing early in their teenage years…by the time they where in their 30’s, they could effectively have had 10 or more births!
    3.) patriarcal societies placed great value & status on a man’s ability to produce many children… to the extent of local custom to allow, even encourage, men to have multiple wives to procreate more! from what i understand this is still practiced in developing countries around the world…doesn’t Osama Bin Laden have 4 wives and some 24 children????
    4.) religion. yes, religion. does not the judea-christian bible say “go forth and be plentiful & populate the earth?” actually, let me go check…

    Genesis 1/28

    “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

    yup. that is why we are the only mammalian species that numbers 6.5 + billion. some people act like they have never heard of that figure. really. it’s as if since it doesn’t appear to impact them as individuals, it doesn’t matter. well, it affects all of us. and i sure as hell don’t want my tax money to pay for some unwed mother who cannot afford to raise hew children. it’s not the children’s fault-it’s the selfish ignorance of the mother. can we say ‘home-schooled’?

    take a gander at this organization… i was introduced to them during an Earth Day celebration back in 2007…

    nuff’ said. i don’t want children. my bf does. we argue. i win. no babies.not because i don’t like children… but because children right now would stop my career cold. but i have to watch him…i think he’s sneaky…


  • Nicosia

    I think there are too many babies in the world who need loving homes. A more practical solution would be to fix the adoption system.

  • Cyn

    all of her 14 children are by in vitro. same donor. this is an exceptional case. but it does shine a very painful and awkward light least in this country..on how the laws and social mores are way behind science and technology.
    we can do it. but we have not given much thought to how to regulate it. or prevent misuse or abuse of it. nor any thought to consequences to future generations.

    given the incredible # of babies involved..this got the press coverage..i seriously doubt this is the only instance of abuse of this technology. something which serves neither the potential parents or children well. so we do need some kind of legal oversight of this process. there is potential for real harm here. as in this case..there is the very real possibilty that all these children will require life long medical support of some kind and atm that appears it will be funded by the state.

  • Culturedropout

    I think we already _have_ created artificial life, haven’t we? Didn’t anyone see Sarah Palin in the vice-presidential debates…?

  • Spange

    I am not sure but I suspect in the UK this situation might not have been allowed to occur. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has a code of practice for it’s licensed practitioners that require careful consideration of the circumstances especially in the case where a child will have no legal father. I have only briefly scanned it but the assessments also include history of substance abuse and violence by the prospective parents etc.

    If anyone wants to read it (it’s lengthy) it can be found at

    The section about assessing the parents is at G.3.1. Sorry, not sure how to link to the section directly.

  • ringtailroxy

    14. Abbey ~

    okay. you all are going to make a stew out of me for this one… but i am simply curious and not understanding something here.

    if you are unable to adopt a child due to “health problems” that’s medications make you infertile, i am led to believe that the adoption agency knows something you aren’t sharing. maybe they are concerned about you emotional stability? your financial ability to raise a child? or, sadly, if you will survive long enough to raise the child to adulthood?

    okay… here’s my heartless comparison. (this is how i feel about this right now, but this site has enlightened me in many ways, so feel free to comment, but please do not immaturely flame me here)

    people whom try adoption first, get rejected, and then go to the fertility clinic to have in-vitro fertilization and embryo implantation remind me of people whom get rejected at the local humane society from adopting a dog then just go down the street to a pet store and buy one. (defeating the whole purpose of adopting an animal)

    seriously. if adopting is a way of giving love to an baby (or animal) and raising it, if you get rejected, you just try to rectify the reasons they rejected you to show your interest and desire to be the best parent (pet gaurdian) you can be.

    you don’t get all pissy and huffy, storm off, and contribute to the world overpopulation problem, while leaving the perfectly adoptable baby (or dog)

    now, maybe that’s a terrible comparison,but since i don’t have kids, and don’t know anyone whom has ever adopted, i don’t know how it goes. i only know that at the shelter i volunteer at, we go through a great amount of interviewing and home checks prior to adopting out a dog. why? because we don’t want them to be returned! we want dogs to go to a final, permanent home with a loving family! we don’t want to see people go off and buy dogs, either. so it can be difficult… but maybe… just maybe…

    not everyone should have a pet. and not everyone should have a child.

    there. i’ve said it. (goes & hides in the innermost room in the house for the bombing to commence)


  • Kreachure

    Is it really that hard to create natural babies in the first place??? It’s not like there’s already a gajillion ways to make (or get) your very own bundles of love.

    Stop complicating things and go to an adoption home. They’ll be more than happy to give you one of their cutest pouters. Hell, I think they’d throw another 7 in for free if that’s your burning desire.

    Okay, I know it’s a little bit more complicated than this, but seriously, there’s absolutely no lack of loveless babies (or baby-making) in this already sad sad world, so that you’d need to bring even more in such convoluted ways…

  • Cyn

    ringtailroxy –

    “…not everyone should have a pet. and not everyone should have a child…” (uh, yeah bit of an awkward comparsion. i do ‘get’ what you meant tho.)

    usually i will err on the side of being more hands off regarding adult behavior. as in less govermental oversight. less social interaction. etc.
    but when it comes to engaging in any activity that has potential harm to people beyond the person engaged in that activity..i do draw a line.
    and this is a very complicated issue.
    who should parent? how does one legislate any part of the process? lotta issues involved.
    still i do think something should be done. granted w/ much prior thought and consideration given to it.
    there seems to be this notion in American culture that people are entitled and for some due to religious reasons..actually obligated to procreate.
    so from that stand point having children becomes the ultimate in selfishness w/ no real regard for the children. they become the vehicle to attain a goal of the parent. not created out of love.
    so first we need to sort out exactly why we want to have children before we have them.

    and i’d hope people would comment w/ some thought given to the FAQ. personal attacks are not what this site is about. simply have your say w/out ‘bombing’ anyone. k?

  • Nicosia

    Kreature- I like your common sense on this matter.

  • Nicosia

    Being pregnant and giving birth are VERY overrated. I endured 38 hours of misery in labor with my daughter, and with my son, I threw up every day (sometimes more than once) for the entire pregnancy.

    If I couldn’t have had my kids, I would have adopted. I still might like to one day. Or take in a foster child.

  • Cyn

    oh ..and humans have this perverse tendency to become obsessed w/ something that they are denied or have restricted access to. reason why prohibition never works.
    and to indication of just how emotionally immature the human species is at this stage of its evolution. ;)
    once denied or restricted access psychologically we create ..out of nothing..justifications for just about anything. like we must do something because some ‘higher authority’ told us to. ;) fruitful and multiply…
    *pokes at the hornet’s nest* ;)

  • Nicosia

    Okay- sorry for the triple post, but I keep thinking of things after I hit the submit button…

    Something that REALLY bothers me is when they deliberately implant WAY too many embryos in order to “weed out” the weak ones later by aborting them. Just incredibly wrong.

  • Renegade

    Hmm, touchy subject for debate and likely to lead to an atomic bomb of atheist/Christian debates. Again. Haha, anyways I think alot of this is being looked at from the perspective of the parents. How about the kid himself? I mean damn, how are you gonna feel when you find out you were a test tube baby? I mean, kids get enough trauma after finding out they were adopted. Finding out that you were artificially created is a completely different load of crap to take. I personally think that is something so many of these mothers to do in vitro fertilization fail to take into account. Yes, it rectifies your own problems and you can have a baby. Yay you just made yourself happy. However this child that you created might not be too happy to find out he’s artificially created. In fact, he just may flip shit and you have a brand new set of problems to worry about.Especially if he flips shit as an emotionally unstable teenager.

    Now then for comment number 16 by Darshan Chande:

    “I think it is completely unethical to use artificial means to create human lives. In the last 10000 years human population has already increased much more than it was prior to that. It is unnatural and the effects of it are already being felt through many evils including global warming (Ref: The Inconvenient Truth) And it we go on creating humans artificially now, then guess some day we will only have humans on this planet, full of suffering.”

    Okay, your last sentence would have been a good basis for an argument. However you’re arguing against artificial creation using, not ethics, not morals, but Global Warming? Really? -sighs- Read a science magazine or two dude, Mars is heating up at the exact same rate as earth. Last time I checked there was NOTHING living on Mars to contribute to it’s warming. I also suppose the fact that the southern ice cap is growing while the northern is shrinking is something you didn’t know about either. There is still exactly as much ice as before, it’s just in a different place. HOWEVER enough about that. It’s another debate that belongs elsewhere. My point is this. Next time you use an argument in a subject, make sure you know it’s been proven to be true, because last time I checked Global Warming being caused by humans is still being debated.

    Back to the real debate. My stance is that artificial creation is wrong. Not because it’s a morally or ethically poor decision for a mother to make. In all honesty, let her make the decision herself, it’s all between her and whatever God/not God she believes in. I think it’s wrong just because of the effects it will have on the child itself. Even if it’s a genetically superior super child it will still have the “Oh you aren’t even a normal person because you were created artificially” thing hanging around in the back of its head.

  • ringtailroxy

    Cyn~ put that stick down! don’t you remember what happened last time you stuck that wooden appendage in the boiling womb of THAT hornet’s nest???!!!

    but i agree. see my post #30.

    although i definitely see the reasoning behind ‘parental selfishness’ in the desire to have a child by any means necessary, whether it be beneficial to the future child or not, i ultimately look at our species as a whole and think that every human life should contribute to our advancement in some way.
    backwater, slum-living families in tin roof houses in garbage strewn streets should not be having 8 children who have to get their meals from the local gabage dump!

    thankfully, Prez Obama repealed Bush’s ‘gag’ order and made funds available to family planning facilities in impoverished nations that PERFORM ABORTION SERVICES. prior to that, the only american monies going to family planning in other areas of the world preached… abstinence! like people with no goals beyond procuring food & fresh water aren’t going to have sex…


  • Nicosia

    Abortion is not the answer to overpopulation. It causes a lot more harm to the mother than the Pro-choicers would have you believe (but that’s a different hornet nest I’ll poke at later.) Abstinence is not the answer either, as that just simply does not work! People are going to have sex, whether you tell them the truth about it or not. It is human nature and a simple fact of life. Sex education that is truthful and birth control that is easy to get and use is. I am conservative, but I do not understand why other conservatives treat this as an either/or issue. It seems like a common sense issue to me.

  • ringtailroxy

    i was not saying that abortion is the answer! i was saying that american funding will go to family planning centers & organizations that offer abortion services… in addition to pre-natal care, contraception, and communication. during Bush’s time, the money was not given to organizations that offered abortions!

    what is the answer? a pivotal shift in the way humans see themselves! when we, as a species, can recognize the problems that we procreate effect more than just us, our immediate family, our immediate community… it’s hard to convince a developing countries’ people that what they do effects the world on a global scale…since they must feel the world doesn’t seem to think of them…


  • Renegade

    It’s because it is an either or issue, just like abortion. I personally believe abortion is only right when a mother does so to protect her own life, however just because I think it’s wrong doesn’t mean that the mother will. It is her decision, if she decides to do so and you believe it’s wrong from a Christian standpoint, then leave it between her and her God/not God.

    This is the exact same kind of issue, just like stem cell research.It comes down to the individual. If you believe it’s something that’s wrong from your Christian standpoint, then let yourself believe that the God you believe exists will take care of it. You don’t need to yourself.

  • Nicosia

    What I am saying is that a whole lot of the abortion debate would be negated if people had access to birth control. Encouraging abstinence is one thing, but not telling people how to prevent pregnancy is just irresponsible and short-sighted. Whether they do it inside marriage or out, the biology remains the same and they need to know how it works. Ringtailroxy- I misunderstood you!

  • Abbey

    to ringtailroxy. I’m not offended, nor will i get alll huffy. I have had rheumatoid arthritis since a child, which normally wouldn’t prevent a woman from conceiving, i’m not going to go into what any of my meds are, suffice it to say, some meds can help in ways while still harming in others. That being said i understand your comparison, but i don’t feel that adopting a child is the same as adopting a animal from the pound. Adopting a pet is a bit of a different process (yes i have 2 cats from the shelter). Believe it or not, the adoption process can actually be more expensive than in vitro in some circumstances. I wholeheartedly agree that giving a loving home to an unwanted child would be the best thing. In full honesty, i’ve always wanted to adopt rather than have biological children. again, having been through adoption sites and lawyers, apparently it was not an option for me. Adoption agencies are not clamoring to just give children away, at least not in my personal experience. Cyn, you’re right, people do often want what they cannot have, i won’t deny that i myself have felt i was becoming obsessed with my own fertility. This is natural, though
    perhaps not all the time healthy, but i am only human and those are how my emotions have come out. It is a human nature to want to procreate, it is our biological impetus, just like any other animal on this planet. I agree with the poster that says we’re not talking about genetically engineering a sperm, egg, child, organ, or whatnot. This could be considered a medical procedure, no less ethical than some others i feel. Is it unethical to give someone an organ transplant (i know not the best example), or rebuild a cervix for childbirth? Finally i like the poster who suggested foster children. That is a wonderful and fulfilling option, that again not everyone can qualify for. I’ll save my overpopulaton argument for later. I do welcome any debate, and have to say there are some good arguments on this forum in favour of both views.

  • Renegade


  • gabi319

    In the case of this one particular lady with the octuplets, yes, it is wrong. She has six children prior to the birth of her new eight kids and was already having financial troubles caring for the original six. Now she’s got 14…meaning (assuming she’s also got a husband) 96 square meals a day, at least 98 outfits to wash a week, vaccinations, doctors visits, a gajillion diapers… given they were in financial straights prior to conception, I’m expecting most of these kids to earn their college degrees in 10 years through part time night college or not go at all (which is a shame because nowadays we’re getting to the point where a bachelors degree is so commonplace that it’s the masters that people take notice to). Adoption process is so rigorous to ensure the child is going to a good home (and I agree there are situations where the rules are too extreme. Sorry about your situation, Abbey), but why is the main (and appears to be only) limitation for in-vitro to be if you can afford the procedure? Since we currently have in-vitro and the like, the very least that can be done is stricter rules on who can have the procedure.

    A few more insights on AI… it’s expensive. Medically, they are only allowed to place two embryos at a time (for women over 30 or 35…I can’t remember) hoping one of them will latch on, but oftentimes both will be duds. Part of the reason doctors create so many embryos is to save the cost and health hazards of an invasive procedure like in-vitro. Then we get into the sticky situation in which all of them are viable…how do you feel about abortion, how about adoption, how can you choose which one to keep and which to give up, how can you justify financially and emotionally keeping all of them?

    Too much drama. I would say scrap the whole thing, but not the entire project…endangered animals are benefiting from this because they can’t get it on with all the tourists watching. Humans, however, aren’t endangered so we don’t need this. Is it an innate biological need to pass on your bloodlines and the names of your forebearers, to increase the size of your brood to ensure an heir and a spare as well as a number of comely wenches to create politically advantageous alliances with neighboring tribes? Or is in an innate biological need to simply have children? Like the appendix, the wisdom teeth or the pinky toe being practically obselete, haven’t we evolved scientifically and socially enough to not need one to drop out of our own cahooter and be satisfied that your baby came from adoption or surrogate? And I bet there’s no better feeling in the world than to surrogately help out some good parents-in-waiting or to give some one-on-one parenting to a child who never got it when they were first born.

    If I was too vague earlier, my answer to your question is No.

    And actually, ringtail, your comments were fine to me! I know lots of people will be all indignant about comparing babies to dogs but I do it, too. And to be honest, between the gnawing on your hand, the blank stares when you reprimand them, the smiles they have on when they pass gas…a baby at 4 months isn’t too different from a puppy at 4 months. I love the idea of adopting but fear my family would always treat them as “the adopted one” rather than just “family”. Personally, I see no difference between a child given to me and one that used the slip and slide and one of my friends commented that it was obvious given the way I treated all my foster dogs, whether they were long term or weekenders, my dog or a temporary visitor…they all got love. I still don’t understand how he made the connection between adoption and my being a dog fosterer but you and he think alike! You’re not alone in your comment bomb shelter!

  • Renegade

    o.O I have no idea what just happened there. The possible side effects of prolonged use of Birth control pills is why they aren’t made accessible however. It also has a lot to do with the fact that doctors make a shit load of money off of those suckers, why would they want to make them readily available and take away from their own income?

  • gabi319

    Abbey, I’m not familiar with the adoption process, but have you considered adopting abroad? It’s a shame that adopting here doesn’t appear to be a viable option but maybe elsewhere you’ll have better luck?

    Or surrogate. There’s a growing surrogate movement, particularly for single men who want a child but are not allowed to adopt (for no better reasons than they are single and they are male).

  • stef


    i am a woman who cannot have children because of the shape of my uterus. i am a healthy woman!
    my uterus was deformed at birth but it can be fixed with expensive surgery… whats the difference?

  • ringtailroxy

    i am very impressed by the maturity and composure of all the comments so far! seems like LV is getting back to the REAL ORIGINAL AUDIENCE…

    i am actually shocked that your condition would render you unable to adopt! there is no feeling worse than the desire to rasie 7 provide love to another human and being denied for a reason like that! (i was afraid you had something a little more terminal or mental)

    as an adult who went through the foster care system of the early 90’s… i am forever in deepest debt to the 2 families who fostered me. although i cannot locate them at this time, they know i have never forgotten them. their kindness, love, and guidance helped me at the most difficult times in my life. (as a teenage runaway and molested teen) so i am all for foster families…we desperately need you!


  • Cyn

    43. ringtailroxy –
    ;) but i get such perverse pleasure from doing so! :)

    & i’ve changed in how i see things online..especially here. aside from obvious violations of the FAQ & annoying asshat spammers ;)
    i’ve accepted that people simply do not pay attention to anything other than what they wrote themselves. w/ the rare and far more intelligent variation of the species exceptions ofc. ;)

    frankly, this aspect of science in all its permutations scares the hell outa me. and its the same spectrum. from artifically creating life where none existed to altering existing genetic structures. and yeah, saving extinct species of ANIMALS sounds good ..on paper but even that creeps me out. why not address why they went extinct in the first place? since the rate of extinction has increased w/ human expansion and development and is not..apparently..a part of a natural dying off a species process. which is the key to understanding OUR impact on this planet. how was life altered by our introduction into the equation? by our expansion into all corners of the globe? by our supplying our needs at the expense of not only other species but ecosystems and yes, even other people in other countries?
    we are an incredibly self obsessed and selfish species that is also the most powerful agent of change this planet has ever known.
    and i just wonder what future generations will think of us…if there are any…
    will they look back and see the 1st test baby as ‘the event’ that changed the course of human history? or what? its just very scary stuff. and i don’t think people give any of it enough thought. and i mean cool, impersonal, w/ an eye to the future consideration. instead its all about ME ME ME and what i want. NOW NOW NOW.

  • lifeschool

    I think this issue has a lot of pros and cons. I think you’ve hit the nail Cyn when you asked whether science should even though it could. I have no problem with artificial insemination, but when it comes down to playing with genetics and creating ‘designer babies’, count me out.

  • gabi319

    There is a difference, stef…or at least I’ve perceived that you are electing surgery to fix your uterus. Yes, technically it is reconstructing the uterus artificially (artificially? I don’t know what this surgery entails) to create a space for a fetus to develop but a child is a possible conclusion of the conclusion, not the actual end result of the surgery. The surgery would be reconstructing your uterus and not artificially creating life.

  • Wilma!

    55: Cyn, I don’t think a rant does any harm now and then.. ;) Humans are scary – they are the dominant species of the planet but don’t take respnsibility for their actions. Are WE the great plague of locusts? But think back a few decades; how innocent were we in the 60’s? How about the 70′?, even the 80’s? Pretty innocent, or perhaps naive as a race. Now things are speeding up, for the first time we can actively DEBATE these issues, with a large number of strangers, from all around the world – instantly. I do believe we have made an ADVANCE in our thinking, and at last we can – as a race – take steps to highlight our views, and make those changes (before science messes up the gene pool as well as the planet).

  • ringtailroxy

    all this cloning babies and in-vitro science reminds me of an old twilight Zone episode i saw when i was 12. (the summer i was 12 i was allowed to stay up and watch all the creepy shows until 1 a.m.!) i forgot the name of the episode, and all i remember was this couple going to a doctor’s office, and being handed a book, and given the options as to what height, eye color, sex, and personality their children could have… it wigged me out then, and it still wigs me out now!


    p.s.holy hell! i just got this link forwarded to me by my friend in Jersey! thanks, kim!

  • ringtailroxy

    i have the overpowering urge to call Cyn ‘cinnamon’…now i’m hungry! thanks for ruining a month of weak self-control!hey- i knew my diet wasn’t going to work!


  • Cyn

    56. lifeschool –
    it is a mortal and potentially fatal flaw of the human species..simply because we can do something we feel compelled to do so. and that is horribly, horribly short sighted, selfish and i think morally and ethically wrong.
    because we can create life doesn’t mean we should anymore than because we can end life we should. you can come at this from both ends of the process..birth to death.

    i would no more advise a woman to seek artifical means to create a life than i would advise her to terminate a life artificially simply because she wanted to. it is far more complex than just cuz you want to. or for that matter cuz you think you need to. as odd as it may sound to some unenlightened coming from an is precious and for lack of a better secular word, sacred. and not to be toyed w/ lightly.
    and no, i’m none to thrilled w/ artificial insemination either. i dunno. this is when i go all 60’s hippy do dah and say natural is best. the science that i love and respect as a whole..just wanders down some very dark and scary paths when it comes to the creation process. *shudder*
    think we’d be better @ re tooling the adoption process in this country. and re educating folks about foster care and adoption in this country. (the foreign adoption thing bothers me too)

    and there are other aspects to life than family and parenting. and sorry, i don’t buy the biological urge thing as justification for obsessively pursuing creating a family. we are animals and we do have intellects too. so..we can exercise choice in the matter.

    and yeah, some of all that seems contradictory in a way but hey, i’m just a simple human evolving into a higher intelligence…at some point. ;) just not soon enough. :)

  • Cyn

    58. Wilma! –
    yes but just who is ‘the science’? we are the science! i dunno…on good days when the sun is shining and my child is laughing i am hopeful for our future and on bad days when its raining and she’s being a little shit ;) i wonder if we’re not doomed. ;), eh.
    60. ringtailroxy –
    *wanders off to the kitchen for cuppa hot chocolate and make some cinammon toast*

  • bigski

    Six kids are enough why would someone want eight more? I think science should push the envelope in all cases,that`s called learning.

  • gabi319

    #62 Cyn: “on good days when the sun is shining and my child is laughing i am hopeful for our future and on bad days when its raining and she’s being a little shit ;) i wonder if we’re not doomed.”

    haha! but in all honestly, the funny quotables need to stop so I’m not tempted to continually refresh this tab instead of actually getting some work done. …just playin’… :-D

    Someone mentioned the test tube babies that were done a couple decades ago. Anyone know anything new about that? Any adverse effects or X-Men quality mutations we need to be aware of? It’s only a recent endeavor but whatever information they’ve already gleaned from this would be essential in figuring out the ramifications of the artificial creation work being done now. Just by judging from the various tv segments on test tube babies, enough work has been done that we can’t avoid the consequences of petri-dish life but it’d be nice to be forewarned of potential diseasters ahead.

  • Good Nads

    I believe that if we did do this, we would end up with a society not unlike Brave New World. However, my own personal views on things could potentially require this. So I think that popular demand will determine this.

    P.S One more thing is that this could be an ethnical and efficient method of stem cell research and organ doning. So I would say yes.

  • Lemons

    Is it right to artificialy bring a child into the world when there are children up for adoption?

    I am not a woman and i imagine it’s not as easy as “i want a child..i’ll have that one” and that many people would want their child to actualy be geneticly theirs.

    But personaly i think that bringing a child into the world artificialy when there are children (already living children) who have no parents of their own, is somewhat like eating cake in front of the starving. (Not that i am blaming anyone who choses not to adopt)

    I am not totaly against this however, it would be cruel to simply say ‘no’ to a woman who can’t concive. But i wonder how many children are adopted because their adoptive parents cant have children of their own? and how many wont be adopted in favour of artificial means?

  • guy

    whats wrong with the way babies are as it is?

  • sdggrant

    I dont see fertility treatments as “artifically” creating life. The baby was created just like every other baby, sperm met egg.

    Now if we are talking about cloning human life and stuff like that, well, I don’t quite know how I feel about that. I think it would be a great milestone for science and discovery if they were able to create human life out of completely artifical means, but I would also be scared of the implications.

    Imagine 500 years from now a crazy Hitler-like dictator making himself an army of clones who answer to no one but him! Sounds like some Star Wars shit to me.

  • anthony p

    I dont think she plannes to have 8 it just happened that way. AS for artificial life its a tricky question because it is one of those things with a really nasty result if you fail.

  • Cyn

    ya’ll should really read up on the news stories about this latest case of the 8 babies because apparently her doctors who created this situation were aware there were 8 viable fetuses attempting to come to term. and the industry standard is no more than 5..if that many. so there is possibility of legal implications in this case. and this woman has 14 children now ..none of whom were natural.
    so a huge difference between creating multiple births artificially and a natural occurrence of multiple births.

  • Tricia

    I absolutely do not think people should use artificial ways to have children, including fertility treatments and in-vetro fertilization. I think it is very irresponsible in more than one way.

    First, in a time when the population is huge and we can’t feed everyone on the planet, is it really right to bring in 8 at a time? Women were not meant to have litters of children!

    Second, the life-long health problems that may challenge these children are completely avoidable. Even twins are usually born early because there is not enough room in a woman. When you get to 5, 6 or more children the time in utero decreases and the danger of complications increases.

    Third, I have heard more than one of the women who have extreme multiples claim that they did not reduce the pregnancy because “God would do what he wanted to do” in regards to their health. HELLO?? God didn’t want you to have children! You’re infertile! You turned to SCIENCE to get your babies! If God had his way, you wouldn’t be having children. I’m okay with you being religious. Just don’t pump yourself full of artificial hormones, drugs and embryos then claim God did it.

    Fourth, and I believe the most important reason to not have artificial births, there are so many children already born that don’t have a family to come home to. So many children alive right now would love to be your child. As a person who comes from a mixed family, I can say without a doubt, that my sisters are all my sisters, no matter what mother and father they came from.

  • Nicosia

    Lemons –

    “But personaly i think that bringing a child into the world artificialy when there are children (already living children) who have no parents of their own, is somewhat like eating cake in front of the starving.”


  • sdggrant

    It is human nature to want to have children who are genetically linked to the parents. I would consider adopting, but not until after I had a child of my own. My girlfriends mother has 7 children, is she irresponsible for not adopting? But yet she probably donates more money and time in a month to help starving children in Africa with no parents then you will in a life time. It’s all nice and dandy to have sympathy for these children, but if you do nothing to help them other then blast others then you’re nothing but a bag of hot air.

  • sdggrant

    And no, that comment was not directed at any one person so try not to take offense to it.

  • joanne

    the question is why should we all be debating here? we cannot even define life.

    • KieraJayy

      yes we can.

      LIFE [lahyf] noun, plural lives /la?vz/ [lahyvz], adjective

      the condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organisms, being manifested by growth through metabolism, reproduction, and the power of adaptation to environment through changes originating internally.

  • Mom424

    It’s not that I feel that the technology is sinful, or that the only way to reproduce is the way god intended, but the selfishness of it’s practice is extremely troubling. Not only the women involved, their desperation is to be pitied, but the clinics and physicians that prey upon these women for profit. I have heard of many more than one instance of these couples going through the procedure 5 and 6 times; not only are they being bankrupted emotionally but materially as well. How can it not be obvious to the doctors and clinics that some things are just not meant to be? It seems to me that adoption would be more cost efficient; at least you only pay once. The added bonus of providing a loving nurturing environment to an unwanted child should more than make up for the initial investment.

    I don’t think it should be outlawed or anything along those lines; I actually do believe in personal freedom; but I don’t believe in it’s abuse. It should be monitored and licensed so the type of selfish foolishness Cyn has shown us results in some sort of consequence to all parties involved.

  • DDRM

    This is one of those situations where if it hasn’t happened to you – you can’t possibly understand how painful a life situation it is.

    Wanting a baby when you can’t have one is not like wanting a bigger screen TV.

    It’s not a “get over it” thing. It goes to the core of what it means to be a human being. It’s never goes away, it’s a permanent sadness.

    How does the lack of direct insemination make it artificial? It’s just a medical treatment to the same ends.

    It’s no more unethical than heart/lung machine for artificial breathing, dialysis for artificial kidneys, Transplants and blood transfusions.

    If a baby is born with heart problems – should we let it die because the solution is a machine and not biological?

  • Nicosia

    Mom424 brings up some very good points. I agree- it should not be outlawed, but should definitely not be abused. What the hell was that doctor thinking, putting EIGHT embryos in her?

    sdggrant- I understand what you are saying. No, that woman is not irresponsible for having seven children, as long as she loves them and takes care of them. She sounds like a lovely woman.

  • gabi319

    77. DDRM:
    Those are good scenarios you bring up but the crux of the problems is that those problems (heart/lung machine, dialysis, transplants) seek to fix problems that already exist with the only solution available short of dying.

    In the case of having children, there are a multitude of solutions without having to create it in a lab.

    I won’t contest with the idea that basic human nature is to pass on your genes to safeguard from extinction. However, I believe that it is not contemporary human nature but rather a relic of past tradition. Our environment has changed so drastically from our ancestors’ that even our teeth differ to meet our needs rather than what our ancestors needed. Aside from a greater disposition to breast cancer or other hereditary traits, a child of your own loins is no longer genetically superior than one who is not.

  • Ms. B

    I suppose I may have a slightly skewed view on this subject. After all, I am technically the product of “artificially created” life. I was not a test tube baby, nor was I the result of artificial insemination. My parents struggled to conceive for ten years of their marriage, before signing up for an experimental hormone program that allowed them to create myself (and my twin brother.) There’s even a photograph from when my brother and I were two years old, with all the other parents and children that were involved in/came from this program.

    Now, this is not to say that I’m automatically going to say that artificial methods are awesome and perfect. I think that people who can’t conceive should have access to artificial methods. However, maybe there should be a limit on who can or cannot use these methods, or what these methods are. I do not, however, think women should be allowed to conceive eight babies at once, because this is unhealthy for the fetuses (fetii? I don’t know) and poses a risk to the mother.

    In addition, we have to consider population control. I read an article about two years ago that discussed a sudden explosion of triplets in a certain town in New Jersey. The large amount of children at once puts more pressure on school systems, not to mention the parents. (Of course, then we come back to how women who have six babies at once get aid, but women who have six babies one after the other get nothing.) Maybe we should limit artificial conceptions to twins, in order to prevent people from overloading the systems.

    In addition, maybe ob/gyns or other conception advisors should push the idea of adoption, and maybe adoption should be made cheaper. However, artificial conception methods are often cost-prohibitive anyway, which is why doctors will implant eight fertilized ovum at once rather than several sets of two- they implant a lot in order to increase the chances that one will implant. Maybe we need better limits on that sort of thing.

    I guess what I’m saying is artificial conception is technologically great and all, but some improvments have to be considered in order to make it more ethically sound.

  • anya

    #70 Cyn: here’s a clip from a news article about the embryos
    “Angela Suleman [grandmother] told reporters Friday that doctors implanted far fewer than eight embryos but they multiplied. Experts said this could be possible since Nadya Suleman’s system has likely been hyperstimulated for years with fertilization treatments and drugs.”

    I highly recommend people read the article. It discusses more the psychology behind her in-vitro babies rather than the morality of it. The OCD probabilities of why she’s a repeat in-vitro offender, the effects of the situation on people other than this woman (the woman’s mom goes to therapy as a result of this)… and as a single mother going through school while raising 14 babies soon on her own because her mother’s therapist recommends to toss her out of the house, having to pay for a hospital team of 48 as well as a month of hospitalization for eight 9-week premature babies… It’s an extreme situation but still brings up valid reasons for why artificially creating life is a bad idea.

    I’m not just harping on people who want conceive a child via in-vitro. It’s also problematic in the case of surrogates conceiving in-vitro. There was a news article some years ago about a couple who used a surrogate. She was a repeat surrogate (so she’d been on years of fertility treatments). The couple only wanted one child but by artificial creation had multiples. I wish I could find the article again but it discussed the morality of abortion and who had the right to make that decision…I think in this situation the parents only wanted one and wanted to abort the others but the surrogate refused to have an abortion and considered taking the other child but the parents didn’t like that either because it had their genes so technically it was their child…something like that. I can’t remember the details. All I remember was it was a soap opera mess.

  • Cyn

    81. anya –
    i remember that multiple birth surrogate story too.

    hey..thing is we dove into all this head first w/out much thought to the current implications or future complications. as i’ve said ‘genie’s outa the bottle’ but i still think we should put on the brakes now. and put forth some thoughtful oversight and possible legislation to at least guide these processes better.
    weird thing is..this kind of headline grabbing story..albeit tragic for the family concerned..may well be impetus enough to make people call for further investigation of the medical professionals involved and hopefully open the public eye for a need for some kinda of legal oversight and simply that we need to rethink why we even have children or create families.
    doesn’t seem so long ago that women were simply defined as child bearers and not much more. so this current ‘biological clock ticking’ & i gotta have a kid..i think is more social hype and actually counter productive to women becoming defined as more than ‘just’ mothers.
    and yes, i say that as a mommie.
    *sigh* this is a very complex issue on so many different levels. w/ truly heartbreaking consequences.
    i do think people commenting and at least being made aware of some of the various angles of this issue is in the end a good thing. hopefully get some folks to really thinking about what it is to be a parent. if it really is a good choice for them.

  • TheOddball

    Guys, guys…
    We are going about this all wrong.
    We can only artificially create life,
    if the person being created consents.

  • Leo

    I don’t see what’s wrong with artificially creating life. It’s not like we’re doing it just because we can, it’s to give people a chance to bring up children who otherwise wouldn’t be able to.

  • ringtailroxy

    isn’t that the way of all great technological advancements? the only trick to those advancements that stay & improve our lives is that either they had little to no public disasters, or where improved before a disaster could occur.

    take, for example…

    1.) thalidomide. a drug, introduced into Europe to relieve nausea & vomiting associated with pregnancy, following lab tests that showed no teratogenic effects of laboratory rodents. not so good for human fetuses.
    2.) Zeppelin. Hindenburg. nothing more to say.
    3.) Dymaxion car. Buckminster Fuller. nothing more to say.

    great ideas, poor in the long-term.

    watch us realize in 30 years that all these in-vitro children continue to have problems, Lasix surgery leads to permanent blindness, & global climate change makes water levels rise, allowing me to finally have beachfront property! (i’m 8 miles in shore)


  • meh

    wat abt artificially creating alpacas

  • Cyn

    85. ringtailroxy –
    are any of the ‘test tube babies’ of age to have had babies (by any means) themselves? what is the statistical difference between medical issues like premature births, developmental delays, MR, cerebral palsy…birth defects etc between natural multiple births and induced multiple births?
    and have any induced multiple birth survivors reached childbearing age and to what end?
    there are a lotta issues here. for right now and for down the road too. and truly who knows how many generations down the road.
    but again..’genie is outa the bottle’ so we best migitate the damages as well as we are able now.
    and yeah…saw something a long time ago some mathematics formula do w/ expontial changes etc. you do one thing and that leads to another thing that is then 3x whatever the first one was and so on. i’m no math nerd so not sure of the specifics but the gist of it scared me.
    we have no way of knowing where what we do today even on what we consider a minor scale of genetic mucking about like in vitro in the longer long range course of events.
    we messed up bad when we turned our backs on the Native Americans concept of 7 generations hence..
    modern America has no concept beyond its immediate gratification of whatever. its sad and its scary.

  • Miss Destiny

    You know what? I was quite supportive of fertility and in vitro and all this crap. Yay for science, ya know? Not so much anymore. If a woman can’t have kids for whatever reason, then has one of these procedures done and ends up with sextuplets, or whatever, I don’t want to be out in public while this fool has to round up her litter.

    If you have the money/time/patience/sanity/help available to take care of multiple births, then who am I to tell you no? But if they’re just letting anyone who walks in become a mother several times over, I have an issue with that. These procedures, if they’re used at all, should have a very strict screening process.

    Then again, I think ANYONE who wants to have children, period, should go through a very strict screening process. Maybe mine is not the best opinion. I’ve known too many stupid parents.

  • sdggrant

    I sort of think the same way as you Miss Destiny, concerning screening processes for parents, BUT I also have a strong belief in personal freedoms and I think that having to pass a test in order to have children would impinge on those rights.

  • oouchan

    Hey…adoption! I am single and would love to adopt…but I can’t because I have to have a spouse. I would not want to have 8 children when there are so many children out there without a loving home.

    So, I don’t think we as humans, should mess with this. If you weren’t ment to have them naturally, then adopt!

    True story….I was told at 16 that I couldn’t have children. (Actually… I was told I shouldn’t.) I had so many issues on the inside that it was phyically impossible. I had 3 miscarriages because of this…however, a miracle occured. My body decided to finally give me a break and I now have a beautiful girl. I can’t have any more but that’s why I want to adopt. Just because I am single doesn’t mean I can’t love just as hard. Hasn’t affected the one I have now!

  • Shanise822

    I believe that if a woman wants to have a child and can only do so with invitro fertilization, she has every right to do so. I don’t think there is anything unethical about it. There are many things that can happen to someone to make conception difficult, and I think it is wonderful that people have been given another option. All that aside, I also believe that this particular instance that led to the birth of octuplets was an extreme misuse of practice. It’s similar to someone going overboard with plastic surgery (i.e. Michael Jackson). I do not believe that invitro is all good or all bad. It’s a beautiful thing to help people have children. It’s not a beautiful thing to help someone have 14 children, 8 of which born at the same time. Her doctor’s licensing should be examine, because I do believe this should fall under malpractice. Humans were not meant to have litters, which is why it is rare to have more than 2 babies naturally. I believe it is sad that a doctor catered to this woman’s obsession, and now all these children have to be affected by it for the rest of their lives.

  • Cybogen

    Create Life – NO! Save Life- YES! Creating life belongs only to our creator, GOD

  • F. McClure

    If anything, population should become a diminutive process. Too many people taking up space in a hostile environment does not give an ethereal vision of the world. We should work on keeping up with the people alive right now before we go inserting simulacra into organic beings. Reason should win out against emotion on this one.

  • GTT

    91. Shanise822:

    I completely agree. I think this particular case is malpractice on the doctor´s part and that his/her license should absolutely be revoked. I also think that the practice has to be regulated and that only doctors with special licenses (and who must adhere to STRICT guidelines) should be allowed to perform these procedures. I also think that people wishing to undergo AI should be held to the same standards as people wishing to adopt (background checks, etc.). I fthis were the case, then this Nadya Suleman would not have been eligible (she is not financially solvent enough to care for her existing children, much less a larger brood, etc). Weed out the crazies! ;)

    That said, I think it´s ridiculous to deny someone the chance to be a parent if they prove they are responsible adults: financially solvent, mentally sane, etc.

    As some above have sad, “if your body was not biologically capable to bear children, then there is likely a good reason for it!” Do you really think some of these “natural” mothers out there are more fit? Think of mothers abandoning their babies to die, or killing them outright, or those who abuse or stay with their children in abusive environments… Just because their bodies allowed them to breed, are they really more fit?

    I´m all for natural conception but I think it´s a little judgemental to say that couples seeking AI are selfish. Adoption is a great option but it is a PERSONAL choice. I think it´s funny that some people have no qualms about condeming someone who does not adopt and yet do absolutely nothing to help those poor children in need. I´m not saying you have to adopt but if you really are that concerned, you could contribute in other ways (money, time, etc). Get off your high horse and do something about it.

  • logar

    First off, I was a little disappointed with the subject matter, after reading the title. I thought it was going to be about more of a sci-fi thing… Creating life from scratch, or maybe AI, or somesuch. It should be titled: “Should Artificial Conception be Allowed?”

    I love how this is such a big issue now. As I recall, the first “test-tube” was born 40 years ago. The second the media gets a hold of a sensational story such as this, now people are clamoring for bans and restrictions, etc. From what I gather, this woman is an exception to the rule, and possibly suffers from some sort of mental illness.

    It gets to be a very touchy subject when you start telling people how many children they can have have, and how they can have them. Or how they can’t have them, as it were. Should we tell two little people not to have children because their children might be little people as well, with all of the health issues associated?

    Pharmaceutical fertility treatments, as well as the other, more invasive procedures are weapons of last resort due to cost and their inherent risks. You can’t just waltz in and have a dozen embryos implanted on a whim.

    As for the moral questions about artificial conception, I say this: technology helps us cheat death, live healthier, balance hormones, and an myriad of other things. Why not aid conception of human life? To me, it’s all the same. It’s not like we’re creating something from nothing. Egg+Sperm=Baby.

    And please stop with the “if God had intended for you to have children, you’d be able to conceive. There must be a reason. Just adopt.” There’s a strong genetic component to many cancers- it’s written into your genetic code. Would you argue that since God intended for you to eventually have cancer, you shouldn’t treat it?

  • kittym

    Wow, I’m actually surprised with how civil this discussion has been. Kudos. And I agree with a lot of what people have to say, on both ends. I think I’m one of those who straddle the line. On one hand, the thought of mucking about with genetics and babies makes me incredibly nervous (I know that’s not what artificial fertility treatments are about, but it’s a bit of a stepping stone, eh?), but I also can’t imagine denying a woman the right to have a child because she is physically incapable of doing so on her own. Of course, there’s always adoption, and I know I personally would try that route before artificial insemination, but some don’t see that as an option, for various reasons.

    When some posters mentioned a “screening process” for potential parents, I’ll admit my hackles raised a bit at that. I could only think that, if I had been put through a screening process of some sort — an early-to-mid-twenties single woman fresh out of university with no money saved and a pregnancy due to a traumatic experience — I most certainly wouldn’t have been “allowed” to have my son, and that thought really, really hurts, since I know the joy my son has brought in my life (and I don’t rely on any state funding, thanks very much!). I think that is taking it a bit too far, though I understand there are people out there who just do NOT deserve to be parents. However, I just don’t believe other people, people who could be the best parents ever known, should be denied because of those who abuse their responsibilities, simply because they fall into a “category”. Sounds a bit too much like denial of personal freedom, honestly.

    Back to terms of what to do about the multiple births/artificial life issue: regulate! Regulate, regulate, REGULATE. Make these institutions and practitioners follow laws that prevent them from implanting eight (eight?!?!) embryos at once. That’s just asking for front-page coverage and taxpayers’ money for the next eighteen years.

    Overpopulation? That’s a whole other can of worms. I don’t think we should blame the couples that use fertility treatments to have the one child they’ve always wanted. How about we educate about contraception, and make birth control more readily available. I like ringtailroxy’s idea about giving money to third-world countries, educating women about their options, and yes, funding progams that use abortions as an option (gasp! The A-word!). But that’s a whole other discussion.

    Global warming? Nope, not touching that one. I don’t want to be mauled virtually :)

  • gabi319

    I agree with Logar’s contention over the “wasn’t in God’s plan”… All-seeing God or pre-written destiny doesn’t sound like logical support for artificially creating life or not doing so. But I also contend with the ‘NEED to bear a child’. Don’t forget that having children is a privilege NOT a right or such reproductive problems would not exist. Your toddler may say he NEEDS that lollipop but who honestly believes he’s entitled to it just on those grounds? I still believe our society has progressed enough that we no longer NEED or require artificial means to create human life. I understand Cyn’s fear of using artificial insemination on animals, but have no real answer since I’m no expert. Is there an ecologist in the house?!?!

    I also agree that the best solution would be to reform adoption programs. I mentioned earlier that a number of single males that have no desire to marry cannot adopt because of antiquated rules. That just ain’t right… Nowadays, being a woman is no guarantee that the child is in good hands.

    Needs, wants and the vague ideas of what constitutes as good parenting aside… There are still far more cons than pros in regards to artificial creation. Financial struggles since creating the child is extremely expensive (that on top of the financial obligations of raising a child), the unknown as far as the physical and mental long term ramifications of being a test tube baby, and even medical problems for women carrying high numbers of multiples, seeking to conceive past their ripe child bearing years and even the long term effects of fertility treatments (Kittym, someone posted earlier that there were less than 8 embryos placed in the woman but since she was a long-time fertility treatment user, her hyperstimulated body created twins and/or triplets of the existing embryos). The only pro I can see is a child being born to someone who really wants it.

  • 7raul7

    We really dont need to create life artificially when this world can naturally can… Why trouble ourself with this seemingly devious & paradoxical debate?

    And as gabi319 says that ” The only pro I can see is a child being born to someone who really wants it. ” , artificially creating life might well truly be regarded worthless. So, for obviousness’ sake, we shouldn’t.

  • Silenus

    I think it’s the same as natural reproduction, just because you have a reproductive organ doesn’t mean you should use it. How many individuals can honestly say they are responsible enough for their own lives that they can handle guiding another being into the world? Very few people question their NEED to breed.

  • dantes_torment

    Should women be given the option to use artificial means to birth children? Yes.

    Should they be given the option to have more than one child that way? No.

    Should they, ethically, choose such a method over adoption? No.

    There are too many people on the planet as is. I think technology should be available to women who want to have their own children and experience childbirth. I do NOT think such technology should be taken advantage of in order for parents with outdated worldviews to continue to overpopulate the world. All women deserve the same chance to have a child, but have the same obligation to do so responsibly. Still, for women both naturally capable and incapable of purely natural conception, adoption should always be considered first.

  • archangel


    I do not mean to bombard you, its just that you replied to my post indirectly.

    Firstly, I do understand what you are saying about the intentions of people when it comes to bearing children. I too do not want a world where mothers bear 14 children only to abandon them. In fact, I would advice against it seeing as it would be somewhat of an impossibility to take care of them all adequately.

    I guess, my qualms with your statements:

    1. “if you are unable to adopt a child due to “health problems” that’s medications make you infertile, i am led to believe that the adoption agency knows something you aren’t sharing. maybe they are concerned about you emotional stability? your financial ability to raise a child? or, sadly, if you will survive long enough to raise the child to adulthood?”

    2. “Backwater, slum-living families in tin roof houses in garbage strewn streets should not be having 8 children who have to get their meals from the local gabage dump!”

    … the subjective nature of it. These specific comments you made were regarding what-ifs and were not universal in nature.

    1. Is regarding subjective questions on the nature of an individual, and not pertaining to society as a whole. Not all people unable to give birth due to their health have mental problems or something rather.

    2. Indeed, most families living in these circumstances tend to have many children to raise survival chances (for the family, not the individual children specifically). I understand that morally, it would be better for such parents to bear little or no children. But the consequences of such a move would be grave. It is on the verge of stating that your social and financial status determines your right to bear children, and of how many of these children you can have. I understand that people SHOULD take in such factors with regards to family planning. However, it would be unfair to make hasty judgements as people are not born socially and financially equal.

  • Kraeg

    Upon hearing the news about the couple who had 8 babies it lead me to a question that I haven’t yet heard posed –

    It seems that the most vocal group against any artificial assistance in creating human life, tend to be very religious minded. Yet any time I see one of these interviews with a family who received multiple births due to conception assistance, they are always thanking god and jesus for giving them such a blessing.

    Is it just me, or does there seem to be an inconsistency of thought here?

  • Person666

    I think that overall it is okay to preform artificial insimination, since neither god, nor anyone but me exists, but in times like these would you realy want to bring another non-existent baby into this world, let alone eight?

  • Davo

    Nope. there’s too many worthless humans on this planet as it is.

  • Copaface

    I think it’s good for couples who can’t have kids and want to start a family.
    As long as there are no complications with the baby then I don’t see what’s wrong with it.

    But there is something to worry about if it does go wrong… then yes I would say it’s unethical because it is the fault of the scientists for a living thing’s suffering.

    So all kinks should be worked out beforehand then I don’t see why we can’t do it.

    I guess it’s a show of how far science has come and just a taster of some of the amazing (?) things we may be able to do in the future…

  • Ant-LOX

    Wait a minute, this chick already had 6 kids, lol, now she has 14. She’s asking $2 million dollars for an appearance, I don’t think she had good intentions with this pregnancy.

  • mikefed335

    They’re not real people, so why the hell not? Do we object robots? No. Same thing with these fake people.

  • Katie

    This is going to sound mean but this is my opinion anyway.

    First of these methods of artificially creating life have such a low success rate that people end up bankrupting themselves. There is a reason why they have a low success rate. You can not create life in a body that wasn’t designed for it in the first place.

    There are reasons why our planet is getting overpopulated and it is because we are jumping over the natural blocks that were set in place to keep our numbers in check. For example some people were designed to be infertile so we have infertility treatments. Our medical advancements have been phenomenal. So people are not dying from diseases that once killed hundreds even thousands. Not to mention we are living a lot longer than we were ever intended.

    I don’t think we can go as far as to outlaw this but I still don’t feel it is right. We have so many orphans out there that need homes and I think its a shame that our adoption process is such a pain. If it wasn’t more kids would be adopted and they need to artificially create life wouldn’t be there. Also many people who adopt (at least from my understanding) want babies instead of taking a small child or teenager. To go back to the animal shelter idea kittens and puppies get adopted first because they are so cute while adult dogs and cats it can take forever because they aren’t “cute”

    If I were to turn up infertile I would go the adoption route. I feel I wasn’t meant to have a child naturally than there are plenty of other children out there that need homes and that I can love.

    Also on a side note to people who have a lot of kids. You can’t tell me that you can properly take care of 8 kids. Yes you might be able to feed them, cloth them, and put a roof over their heads but you won’t be able to give them the attention they all need. Some are going to get pushed to the side or ignored because they are good or quiet.

  • Cernunnos

    “just because science can do something, should it?”

    yes, at least once.


    This procedure should have some intervention of the law.Though I am not a woman, I also realize how great the desire to bear and raise children.
    A judge should have power, after looking at all necessary documents, to say that that a wife is allowed and to say no if the judge sees an incapability.

  • freya

    What this woman did wasn’t wrong. Crazy, yes, but if in the end she can’t support her children that’s what foster programs are for. I fully support the idea of adoption, but I don’t support telling other people what to do. If someone wants to have 14 children, adoption or biological otherwise, let them have 14 children. They have to deal with their own suffering, whatever that means for them. To suggest “back ground checks” for having children, unless it is adoption, is a violation of human rights.

  • monkeycircus

    True, people should have the choice, but do we really need any more people on the earth? We are having serious population growth issues. Why increase the rate of growth?

  • Cabron

    I think science does not have to play to be god. That is a dangerous game. Whatever artificial life is only posible thanks to the elements the

  • Sudheer

    “Should We Artificially Create Life”? The question in itself is not correct in my view.. let me explain ..

    Either you can “create life” or “not create life” ..right?

    When you “create life” its not artificial .. its natural.

    The process of “creating life” will be and should be natural..

    Just a thought…

  • charlie

    are we creating life by putting two cells together that multiply between themselves or are we manipulating cells. to create out of nothing is to create. to take cells that normally multiply between themselves just because we take them out of their natural environment and place them in an test tube or a beaker doesn’t mean you are creating life all scientists do in a lab is use unnatural means to do natural events. cells in themselves are living organisms, so in my opinion all we are doing is manipulating the environment that is all.

  • goose

    don’t create artificial, don’t create natural. Every problem the world faces boils down to one thing: too many people.

    quit thinking you’re gonna make the world a better place by bringing more fucking cabbages to it.

  • Carrie lynn

    There are very few babies to adopt anymore. Many kids are older and have issues, it takes alot to adopt one of these kids. Being adopted is not all that great. My family was wonderful, but i still dont like being ” an unwanted child who needed a home.” i am a single mom because i could never give my child away.

  • Jessica

    First of all, the statement “atheists are moral and ethical” is a generalized statement which has not been backed up.
    I am not saying that the author of this article is not, but I am saying that you cannot simply throw all the Atheists into one basket. It would be like saying the same thing about Christians.
    Secondly, just because one crackpot decided to have 8 kids at once doesn’t mean that all artificial births are bad. Most multiple births caused by artificial methods are accidents- case in point, Jon & Kate who have 8 children and only wanted one more.
    There’s nothing wrong with a woman who couldn’t normally have a child to do it this way. If nature gipped someone of the ability to naturally have a child, then its our job to fix it or do what we can to supplement it just like we would anything else.

  • WeAreJulius

    Should We Artificially Create Life?

    We can’t. Now, if you meant to type should we mess with the natural processes that lead to the creation of life, that’s a different question altogether.

  • MadMonkey

    Yeah, this title was exceptionally misleading, LOL

  • orathaic

    Just because science can do something should it?

    Well it is possible to argue nuclear weapons have saved more lives than they have killed. (asusming the Cold war would have been a lot bloddier and hotter had it not been confined to minor regional wars in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Bosnia et. al) Not to meniton the difference that a quick Japanese surrender made to the end of the second world war.

    (that said a lower population now might have meant less stress on teh enviroment, and pushed back a potential malthusian catastrophe, ie death by starinv as the world fails to produce enough food for (say) 80% of it’s people)

    anyway, I digress. I think we should create artificial life, it may be a useful technique for science (and by extension society) to have at it’s disposal. Though whether it should be encouraged (like safe abortion) is the question being asked. If civilised nations placed less emphasis on the ‘traditional’ family, and allowed social workers protect children when neccessary(perhaps it is only Ireland which constitutionally protects the family as the basic unit of society). If all reproduction required a licence, (like driving a car, most people can easily qualify {also think about China’s 1 child policy, as the closest thing to this that actually exists}) if artificial life creation required proof of the ability and means to support that life, then yes i would agree with the regulated use of tehcniques. (and research to reduce the cost of these techniques)

    That not being the case, when any 14 year old girl can have children, where it is a social norm for girls to aim to have kids over having an education, I do not question the ethics of this case. I might question the intelligence of the mother in this case, whether her choice was in the interest of her family, and whether the doctors should have proceeded. (it’s not like they are required to provide this service) Each choice should have been allowed, even if i would not have made them myself.

  • social_liberal

    I have no problem with the artificial insemination as a means to give birth. As many people stated, where I have a problem is when it should be used.

    In the case of having 14 kids where all of them were produced in this method seems reckless and should not have happened. For those that state that we should not but in as it is not our problem…. YES it is our problem, especially if we end up having to pay for them via welfare or public assistance.

    I cannot say exactly why she would want more children then she can probably afford, but based on the evidence of her hiring a pubilist and trying to sell her story, I would believe that this was her ultimate goal (to make money off her kids). To me, they all should be taken away and given to parents who really want kids and not to make money off them…

    Also, I believe that the doctor should be investigated as it seems she too is looking for her 15 mins. She should have at least attempted to stop the lady after the 3rd time (it seems that this is the 4th procedure that the lady had… all with the same doctor).

  • If the mother can not reproduce naturaly then i dont see why not. But I don not approve of it as a means for research or just will-nilly procreation for whoever in the hell wants a baby. I needs to be reserved for dire medical situations only.

  • WeAreJulius


  • Poleauxe

    creating artificial life is unethical…
    but when the time comes that it will be a need for the preservation of life, why not…
    now, it’s clear that is not of great use to us since over population is a problem…

  • tripsyman

    First of all HELLO – this is my first post on listverse.

    I beleive in the christian God and i see no problem creating life in a testtube (or anywhere else). I’m lucky me and my wife could have kids with no trouble but if I had needed a little scientific help I would have grabbed it with both hands.

  • Denzell

    Only when this procedure is guaranteed to succeed and has been fully understood by everyone. The purpose here is to create life, not to destroy by destroying your own.

  • Stephen

    I guess this has similarities between pro abortion and con abortion.

    This would be beneficial for the couple who cannot have children and want their DNA for kids. However this woman who now has 14 kids simply is taking advantage of the situation. I read earlier that she is asking for $2 million for an appearance. How can a mother truely put a price on her own children? Seems more like this was an act for attention more than anything.

  • Canacan

    I havent had to the time to read all the comments and so I may be a bit late off the starter = but i found this out a few days ago and feel I need to share it here. In some countries it is legal to choose the sex of your child. I think that is awful. I am unable to comment as I am not sure if I can make a baby yet, and would hate to condemn something that I may have to resort to at a later stage
    however I do draw the line at gender

  • paintball

    well thats a different question.
    ask yourself this.
    what if you were an artificially created person?
    Thats one more thing we would have to discriminate about in this world

  • roel

    Yes if…
    1. the family can support the children
    2. there are no health risks (short term & long term) for the mother & the kids
    3. the octuplets will have their own identity
    No if otherwise

    For creatures other than human:
    Yes if it can benefit mankind ( eg. a cow with continuous supply of milk, a pig with 8 legs or a tree that bears several different fruits )

  • WarningDontReadThis

    I feel sorry for those kids.

  • Phender_Bender

    Obviously the people who are pro-cloning have never seen Multiplicity staring Michael Keaton. Anyway, if you didn’t know, the more you clone a dude the more likely he is to need a helmet to eat a snow cone (now I know what you are thinking, safety first, but I was taught to live on the edge, which is why I never wear a helmet when I eat snow cones). On the other side of the argument, they are handy if you want to watch football in a well equipped shed that your wife can’t get into. I read in some medical journal also that clones can easily be passed off as uncles.

  • Levi

    Kase, we need more men like you!! I’m impressed.

    “But I can’t say no because, I’m not a woman. And I imagine being a woman who desires to have children, but can’t through natural means being told “No” to what could be her only real chance at having a child would hurt in some way I couldn’t understand.”

  • Glowbug

    I should preface this by stating that I have a pretty large family by mosern societal norms. I’m the father of five children (ages 10 to 15), all naturally conceived. I’m also lucky enough to have an amazing support structure in my parents, my sister and my brother-in-law. It’s still incredibly difficult (particularly in the current economy), but I wouldn’t trade it for all the tea in China.

    That said, I agree wholeheartedly with Cyn that this is a complicated issue. The fact that the so-called “Octo-mom” (horrible nickname) has figured so prominently in the debate has only further complicated it. Her particular case confuses me in many ways that would require me to write something worthy of (and as lengthy as) Randall.

    No offense, dude. I love reading your stuff, even when I disagree with ya.

    I think that the technology should be available, but with the people responsible for implementing it having a certain amount of discretion. And hopefully more than two sparking brain cells dedicated to common sense. Each case where such technology as in-vitro, artificial insemination (which is nowhere near as much fun as the old fashioned way for the mother, I would imagine), and what have you should be judged on its’ own merits.

    I mean, if you have a patient/client/whatever come in for such a treatment, things such as age, financial status, psychological history, number of other children in thier home, and basic health are valid concerns. If the patient doesn’t meet some kind of standard for caring for a child in more than two of these categories, then the patient in question should thank their lucky stars that they have the chance to rectify whatever the problem is without having another mouth to feed and a little ‘tabula rasa’ mind to help form.

    Believe me, it’s a pretty bloody daunting task.

    What bothers me about a lot of reproductive technology isn’t its availability… it’s the imprecision. Why exactly is it that so many women who undergo in-vitro treatment wind up having litters rather than single child births or twins?! I mean, fer Gawds sake, people! Spend a bit more time on figuring out how to help people who want a child have -A- child, and a little less on uncovering the next generation of Botox, willya?

    Also, I noticed a few references to how people perhaps should require some sort of government license to be a parent. I have a SERIOUS issue with that premise!!! We’re talking about people who can’t even take adequate care of basic infrastructure needs, let alone unexpected issues (again, the current financial crunch and – in the U.S.A. – the FEMA debacle). I doubt THEY should be allowed to breed, never mind telling us who else can or can’t!

    Anyway, as to the actual topic, I think the technology should definitely be available for the people who need it for the appropriate reason. Not to found their own tactical unit/unholy army of the night, but to have a child to love, raise, and teach.

    But hey, what the hell do I know? I actually thought I could avoid writing something semi-Randallesque ;)

  • Cyn

    a new word to add to the evergrowing LV lexicon including such notables as ‘retard’ & ‘asshat’!


  • Randall

    I dare you to define it without irking me.

  • Cyn

    what would be the fun in that? ;)
    a non irked Randall is very much like a non erect penis.
    NO FUN!
    oh baby we lub u irked. ;)

  • Randall

    Hmmm… now I have to figure out if I like that analogy, or not. ;-)

  • Glowbug

    Since I made up the term, here’s my defenition.

    Rnadallesque – Obviously well thought out, factual rather than relying on emotion, well written, and prone to being approximately long as the collected works of Stephen King…. every blessed time it is written ;)

  • gabi319

    134. Glowbug – Why exactly is it that so many women who undergo in-vitro treatment wind up having litters rather than single child births or twins?!

    Already discussed in previous posts. These are highly invasive procedures so doctors often put multiple embryos hoping at least one will ‘catch.’ Generally, they will put between 2-5 depending on age and past issues with carrying a child to term. In situations of frequent fertility treatment users, the woman’s reproduction hormones have been hyperstimulated to the point of creating multiples of the multiples (in the case of Nadya Suleman).

    Litters, regardless of how well-intentioned the parents, will still have health issues. Pregnant women of multiples have greater chances of high blood pressure, anemia, pelvic instability as well as miscarriages. The actual children also deal with health issues. With the higher number of babies, the earlier the premature birth, means these children are born with underdeveloped organs, increasing the chances of deformity, need for neonatal surgery or even death. There is a higher likelihood of TTTS in which two fetus “share” one placenta, meaning one of the children becomes undernourished since the other has taken most of the nutrients. I knew twins like that. One was 6’5″ and strong as an ox and the other was 5’7″ and the most delicate of constitutions with a greater penchant for getting sick. I refer to Ms. Suleman’s eight who were born I think it was more than 2 months premature and had three month stays at the hospital. Or to the Goslyn kids, I think it was half of whom have respiratory complications that require medication. In short, the imprecision partly comes from the need to study more but mostly from too many naturally occurring consequences of having more children than the body was designed to handle, most situations that are impossible to rectify. Some luck out and only one egg develops or other families abort the other viable eggs to focus solely on one but most cases we hear are those who decide to keep all the embryos and results in situations like Ms. Suleman.

    That was the only part of your post that had a scientific basis worth addressing. The other parts were more passioned entreaties. If you’d be willing to clarify with a more objective stand, I’d love to further clarify. (there is no set laws or stupid gene to predict the quality of the parent so I doubt their suggestion hold any firm ground. I’ve simply ignored all of this “license to parent” mess and I’d advise you to do the same)

    I’d like to see some positive, scientifically-backed benefits of having an in-vitro baby. Not simply having a child (options, remember) but having an artificially created child. I haven’t seen any on this board.

  • oouchan


    “The ability to thoroughly wipe the floor with any moron brave enough to post a comment without thought, premise or research and argue with the great Randall of LV.”

    ok…now don’t yell at me! ;)

  • Cyn

    consider it ‘ego stroking’ ;)
    as in there is only one thing that exceeds the size of your ego……ROFLMAO!

  • bucslim


    – an unfortunate condition involving undergarments, a Doctor Evil mask, KY warming gel (with the personal finger vibrators) and furry woodland creatures.

    *bucslim runs for his life*

  • oouchan

    @ bucslim: hahahahahahahahahahaha!

  • Randall


    If you hadn’t ran, I would have advised you to.

  • Randall


    Wellllllll…. I don’t like to brag…..

  • Cyn

    ;) @ the well endowed ego & big headed Randall.

  • Randall


    It really isn’t so much what you’ve got, it’s the talent, experience, and willingness to learn you display in using it. Modesty allows me only to point that out, and not say anything beyond it. ;-)

  • Glowbug

    gabi319: Very informative reply. Thanks. I knew some of the health issues faced by both mother and child(ren), but not all, and honestly I should’ve figured out that repeated fertility treatments would seriously mess up a womans natural reproductive tendencies. My bad – I’m working on four hours sleep, and sorta stuck on stupid (too much coffee).

    As such, I may be a bit slow on understanding what you mean by scientificly-backed benefits to having an artificially created baby. I’m relatively certain that the technology isn’t there yet (coming soon to a uterus near you?), but I’d say the primary benefits would be the ones explored in Gattaca to such terrifying effect.

    I mean, if I had the option of knowing with 100% certaintly that I could have a child that would never run the risk of hereditary predispositions to cancer, Parkinsons, Alzheimers (I think that’s right, but – and I’m not trying to be funny here – I forget how its spelled), Turners syndrome, or any physical/mental defect, I’d take it.

    And you’re right, it IS the cases where all the implanted embryos are carried to full term (or as close as the poor womans body can get) that make the press. I thought that went without saying. Should’ve been more clear on that but I’ll just stick with my caffiene-induced-insomnia excuse. Hope I didn’t miss your point entirely.

    Oh, and bucslim? Be afraid. Be very afraid….. :)

  • Cyn

    modesty? Randall, modest? i am w/out words. least any that wouldn’t get me into trouble. ;) so we’ll leave this at that. :)

  • gabi319

    149. Glowbug
    Scientifically-backed benefits… I left it intentionally vague to create an open field for any facts. To clarify, proven consequence that provides tangible benefits such as prolonged lifespan, improved immune system, cure for mental disabilities, etc…facts that are unique to having a child artificially rather than simply having a child. And I requested published sources as a defense against those who say “well I wanted a baby and now that i have one, I am happy…” No qualitative data found so I’m throwing that out the window (the “facts”, not the baby)

    Gattaca is still science fiction, not science fact. Enough of the human genome is mapped out that we can find out if a person has a LIKELIHOOD of obtaining a certain genetic disorder, but it is still not a certainty and unlike Gattaca, we haven’t found ways to eradicate these abnormalities. Yet. With new frontiers in gene therapies, it could become a possibility but not for many many many decades. I have a friend who works on mapping the human genome at the National Institute of Health. I’ll have to ask her if I’m way off base on this now. For all I know, they could’ve finished and found the gene and cure for halitosis or something…

    I made that extra point about all embryos carried to full term because most of those who enter the treatment…whether for religious reasons or that they just want babies so so bad won’t even consider aborting any viable embryos as a possible option. That decision lies solely on the patient and not on the doctor.

    Alzheimer’s is spelled right. :-) that was my field of choice when I was still attempting biology as a career path.

  • Randall


    Naturally, I was speaking ironically. I am not afflicted with modesty. ;-)

  • Cyn

    @ the ever so insightful Randall.
    which is why you are so dearly lubbed here @ LV. ;)

  • bucslim

    Did someone say ‘lubed?’

  • GullyGongleGink

    God created life, is it wrong if we also attempt it? Is this why we as humans call it artificial life? So if we artificially create a new being, does it have a soul? And who will be responsible for this being? and its soul? God? the apparent creator of us? or us, the creator of another life form? I guess at the end its more about, are you willing to take responsibility for your creation and if so, will it be of fair and just nature, and if so will it be to the benefit to you or the created life?

    One can conclude that an artificial life form created by humans is only a product of ourselves and possibly serves only the purpose of being a slave to humanity in turn making humanity a deity symbol for the newly invented slaves which one then would call artificial intelligence and an invention of humans, whereby human rights would have no possible influence on the well being of artificial beings, whereby it is really questionable whether this whole concept is a good idea unless personal profit is ignored in the creation of artificial beings.

  • Stickboy142

    If God did not wish us to have the ability to create life, he would not have made it possible… Or would he?

  • 6twistedbiscuits

    omg, just think about this will u! every mother in the world has created life! if i beleived in god i would have to say NO hes not against creating life.
    i disagree with artificially creating life purely because i think its silly that men want to have a go at having babies. sorry guys, its a woman thing, if u want children then just like us, u should suffer labour.

  • thewise1

    i dont think we should….we can do that now..i would hate to see what we cant do that were gonna try to do next…

  • RB

    Simply yes !

  • Aimee

    Some women can’t have children and would kill to have one child, so it is selfish to have what, she has like 14 kids?
    It’s sad that she’s apparently trying to have more the Angelina Jolie; I mean, Angelina has the money and the room to look after them, and they are loved. and a plus, they are taking from less fortunate backgrounds because Angelina wants to give them a better chance at growing up. But doing it just to keep up with a celebrity is pathetic honestly.
    But back to the question. I think arteficial means of getting pregnant are fine if it’s for the right reasons, like you can’t have children or something; but having them really for what seems like a publicity stunt, to me is child cruelty. Who wants to grow up knowing their parents made them not because they wanted and love children but to keep up with trends?

  • Shaaronie

    I believe that within the next 50-100 years, women will no longer have to bear children unless they want to. The majority of babies will soon be conceived in petri dishes and raised in special incubators. The number of Atoms in the universe is unchanging and everything is made of Atoms. When a species overpopulates, another species disappears. Hopefully, it won’t be humans. The universe always keeps it’s balance.

  • Ryan

    Personally, I don’t think being an atheist is relevant. I don’t think this is really a religious issue, but a lot of people seem to want to use religion as a means of putting forth their opinion.

    I agree with #5.Kase. Yes and no. I think the overuse could be detrimental to human populations. Producing children becomes a commodity – you can put a price on the process. It devalues masculinity, which is kind of threatening in the long run considering that the male chromosome may be shrinking (I’m curious if that’s true). Actually, it can devalue both sexes. At some point neither the male nor the female will be necessary for reproduction.

    These are questions about human genetics and their future changes to their structuring and evolution. That is really the only way I can see religion trying to come in to say “We are not God and cannot play God.” It’s not that we can’t, but it may be that we don’t know how. Our first reaction to atomic bombs was essentially “Wow, we seriously have to limit ourselves.” When you have to be destroyed to learn the result, you learn nothing.

    Not that the last parts that I just said are completely relevant to this topic – it wouldn’t destroy us. However, it would do things to humanity that we can’t prepare for or expect, and I hardly believe we’d be able to turn it around. The real questions are “Are we willing to change the evolutionary and genetic course of humanity in search of better lives? What can go wrong? How likely are they to happen? What’s the consequences if they do happen? Is this risk acceptable to common standards?”

    Ethical? Yes. Wise? Probably not.

  • enigma

    answer to question….. Yes.

    Letting a women like the “octomom” have 8 kids when she already had 6 while living in a one bedroom apartment with her parents and have no money to raise the kids only to exploit them later on for TV just to make money….NO!

  • ron

    Yes. Are all the people who answer no pro-life?

  • Vishwa

    Thats Human Playing GOD.. asif he can knows all… total crap

  • jewditzsue

    I’d have to say not yet. The worlds overpopulated right now.

  • jewditzsue

    shoulda read the question.. Anywayys..I’d say yes as long as the woman has the income to support a child..

  • spellcaster

    Without sounding pedantic – we haven’t created life in a lab – ever.

    Only by taking already existing cells can we ‘create life’.

    As such, our discussion here is really about the conditions where the process takes place – not about the process itself.

    Sounds picky I know, but there are 2 distinct issues here and by saying ‘Should We Artificially Create Life?’ in relation to the issue of fertilizing women could be somewhat ambiguous.

  • SouthEastgirl_BiologyTeacher

    what can I say ‘ONLY GOD CAN CREATE LIFE’.. i’m a biology teacher but i believe in both science and religion.. what God had/will created are already perfect and no human can do more better..only crazy people will come out with this crazy idea..

  • aston

    Saying no would be stupid… i’ve observed that this website has a brain not like some awww god is total and he is the only one… i am saying believe in your god but there is a limit from believing and overreacting at some level that it could be considered extremist or terrorism… so getting that out of the way the answer is YES if we can stitch some organs together like dr white’s experiment that involved swapping monkey heads, but was stopped while trying to swap a monkey’s with human head… [hypocrites with animal have rights problems… where i live dogs are protected by law, no money for animal shelters, they stay on the street and kill a little child every now and than because america buttet in givingdogs rights] without all of those we would have saved lives, give chances to life, like dr. white’s experiments that could have helped like putting the head of a person paralized from the neck down on the body of a person who is brain dead…

    but anyway, that is not creating life it’s stitching life in a struggle for survival… at how technology is right now we could not simply create life so yes we should but no we cannot yet…

  • bong

    Wow the word create is misused in this context.
    From what i know creation is the making of something from out of nothing.
    Creation of life means making life out of nothing.
    if you already have the building blocks like ready made eggs and sperm
    and you grew it successfully in a test tube is that creation?
    Or more likely midwifery?

    Its ethical to abort but not ethical for a mother to use science to have kids?
    Morality is a two way street and a double edged sword.

  • tbies

    Why not? screw them religious whiners, break out the petry dish and rock on!

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