The following thoughts are provoked by a recent article, “Rent A Womb: Surrogacy and the Right of the Child” written by Mary Ann Mason & Tom Ekman (full article click here). Mason is a national expert in children’s rights, child custody issues and family law policy. Ekman is a writer, teaches environmental science, together they have recently published a new book, “Babies of Technology”.
The article illustrates what is currently happening all over the world in regards to surrogacy. It also raises the issue of the lack of laws for “the best interest of the child”. In 1993, the law in California stated that “the woman who gives birth” is the mother. Most states have been either silent on the issues or have forbade surrogacy. In the first real challenge of this law in the California Supreme Court, the court chose to ignore the significance of pregnancy or genetics and borrowed from intellectual property law. But there are more to babies than to a song or invention.
As you read this article, a host of questions, studies and examples are presented; Epigenetics, maternal logistics and more. Imagine a child with essentially 3 mothers: an egg donor mother, a surrogate mother who carried the child and gave birth, and the contract mother. And in the case of male same sex couples using surrogacy, the maternal question becomes even more divided. The biggest reoccurring question remains, what is “in the best interest of the child”?