On April 9, right in the middle of New York’s epic battle against COVID-19, the state legislature passed, and Governor Cuomo signed, a bill that legalizes commercial surrogacy. As of February 15, 2021, residents of New York will be able to enter into legally enforceable surrogacy contracts.
From the beginning to the end, this debate was never driven by any serious consideration of what’s good for women and children, but by “heartstrings rhetoric, celebrity endorsement,” and especially, gay-rights advocates.
As I predicted, the final proposal lacked adequate and necessary safeguards against the exploitation and commodification of women’s bodies, or the commercialization of children. Underscoring the shameful nature of this legislation, proponents secured its passage by subterfuge, smuggling it past both religious conservative and feminist opponents in the mandatory budget measure, even though commercial surrogacy has nothing to do with the state budget.
So now, in New York, amidst all the rhetoric about human dignity, the poor and marginalized, and protecting the vulnerable, lawmakers have kicked wide the door to “potential exploitation of surrogates, particularly those from low-income backgrounds.”
The exploitation of poor women is the subject of a bestselling and award-winning 2019 novel, “The Farm.” In the book, set fittingly in a New York of the not-too-distant future, a tiny, wealthy, highly-unrepresentative slice of the population are the beneficiaries while the poor are exploited.
In real life, as I have said before, commercial surrogacy is led by same-sex couples, who benefit while poor women are exploited. According to an informal study commissioned by the Chicago Tribune in 2016, ten to twenty percent of donor eggs in fertility clinics went to gay men ordering babies through surrogacy. The overall number that represents was, at the time, skyrocketing, up fifty percent in just five years.
Also, when you consider that self-identified gay people make up about 3% of the population, and not all of them are attempting to become “parents” from a lab, you realize just how much this population group is driving the surrogacy movement. Not coincidentally, the sponsors of New York’s law, like the sponsor of the similar 2018 Washington state law, are openly gay.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, John Stonestreet and Roberto Rivera