Tarry for the Nonce

November 15, 2006

Waking From a Deep Freeze

Filed under: Science — lmwalker @ 6:35 pm

Not to re-inflame the abortion debate, but Ireland has ruled that if a woman freezes embryos, she no longer has any right to them:

Justice Brian McGovern said most agreed frozen embryos resulting from infertility treatment deserved special respect but ruled “the right to life of the unborn” in the Irish constitution did not extend to them . . .

The judgment means spare embryos frozen after successful in vitro fertilization (IVF) in 2002 will not be returned to the mother.

I am empathetic, but not particularly sympathetic. If a women extracts her eggs for IVF, should she have a legal right to them? If she does have a legal right, would that cause problems for women that sell their eggs? Or the people that buy them? What if they change their minds? And what about surrogate mothers? What would be the implications for them?

(And they scoffed at such things coming to pass.)


1 Comment

  1. Wouldn’t this fall under some form of property/contract law? I’m no Irish Constitutional Expert, but I would think common sense would dictate that the ownership of her eggs would be subject to the contracts that she entered into when she got them taken out in the first place. Just a thought. Too busy and tired to actually think any more.

    Comment by Andrew P. — November 17, 2006 @ 10:14 am

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