Cloning Science’s War Against Poor Women

Back when Proposition 71 was being pitched–which created the California Institute For Regenerative Medicine–opponents warned that making human cloning a state constitutional right would result in the exploitation of poor women for their eggs–needed in every attempt at SCNT cloning. Responding, supporters promised to prohibit egg buying as an expedient to pass the measure. 

Now, it’s promise breaking time!. Human cloning has been done and would-be cloners want eggs

Enter AB 926, which will legalize egg selling for biotech research–as well as purchase and sale of human embryos, e.g., nascent human trafficking. The bill was passed overwhelmingly in the radical left wing California legislature, and now sits on Gov. Jerry–the last adult state-wide office holder in California–Brown’s desk.

Here’s what I wrote about this awful bill earlier in the year in the Weekly Standard.

AB-926 aims to repeal the ban on paying women to supply eggs for research (beyond expenses) and allow university or other institutional review boards to establish compensation rates to pay women for their “time, discomfort, and inconvenience.” “Discomfort” is a tactful word for what women experience when submitting to mass egg extraction. The process—known as superovulation—requires administering supercharged doses of hormones that stimulate the ovaries to release 20 to 30 eggs in a cycle, instead of the usual 1 or 2. After that, the donor’s (or seller’s) eggs are harvested under anesthesia via a needle inserted through the vaginal wall.

Most extractions do not harm the egg supplier. But some women are wounded: Potential side effects include infection, the swelling of ovaries to the size of a melon, infertility, stroke, some cancers, and, in rare cases, even death.

This potential “Eggspolitation“–is driven by political left:

There’s an irony here. Those pushing for egg and embryo selling tend to be on the political left, e.g., politicians and advocates who claim to be most supportive of “choices” for women. Indeed, assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, the author of AB 926, claims that the bill is about guaranteeing “equal treatment” for women in research.

But establishing egg and embryo commodities markets would actually lead to unequal exploitation opportunities for buyers. Those lining up to be superovulated for pay are unlikely to be members of the professional class. Rather, they would primarily be the poor and/or unemployed, women in such dire financial need that they are willing to risk their health, fecundity, and lives for a relatively small stipend. The real money in the embryo/egg industry would be made by the companies and scientists who succeeded in using the reproductive substances of women and embryonic cells to achieve fame and fortune.

Talk about a war on poor women! Veto!

Wesley J. Smith — Wesley J. Smith is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism.

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