Sunday, December 27, 2015

An interesting tidbit

Advocates of the universal recognition of gestational surrogacy contracts are wont to argue that gestational surrogacy is a job like babysitting or wet nursing. The gestational surrogate simply cares for (like the babysitter) and feeds (like the wet nurse) the baby, is, therefore, in no way involved in its production, and, hence, can have no claim to parentage. This is a key point for those who want to extend the "presumption of parentage" to same-sex male couples for if it can be successfully argued that gestational surrogacy can entail no parental claims, then no gestational surrogate will be able to rebut a same-sex male couple's "presumed parenthood". (The egg donor, because she [yes, I realize the use of the feminine pronoun is a transphobic presumption because "transmen" can donate eggs as well--report me to the New York City Commission on Human Rights and then go fuck yourselves, okay?] donated anonymously, does not know who used her eggs, and is, therefore, in no position to make a parental claim.) Got all that?

It is curious, then, that Lambda Legal seems to disagree with this claim that gestational surrogacy is simply a service and as such entails no parental claims. Two Lawyers at Lambda Legal write in The Guardian:
"The states that continue to fight these families in court argue that birth certificates are a proxy for biology, and that the members of a same-sex couple can’t both be biologically related to their child. (This is technically false, as an increasing number of lesbian couples use reproductive technology where one mother carries the pregnancy and the other donates the egg. [emphasis mine])"
No one would argue that by feeding or minding a baby a wet nurse or a babysitter becomes biologically related to it. No one. It appears that Lesbian couples are using gestational surrogacy so that both women in the relationship can have biological ties to the child whereas gay couples (and, yes, yes, I know, I KNOW, opposite-sex couples AS WELL) use gestational surrogacy for exactly the OPPOSITE REASON, so that the surrogate will have NO BIOLOGICAL TIES and, hence, no claim to parentage. How this is NOT a contradiction, I do not know. But what do I know? I'm a benighted bigot.

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