There is a simple blood DNA test that can be used at 7 weeks to determine whether the pregnant mother is having a boy or girl. The test will be productively used to abort fetuses that are genetically doomed to have gender-linked diseases: boys with ALD or another dystrophy like Duchenne muscular dystrophy for example. For many on this planet practicing the determinate of gene pool selection is a good thing. If parents decided they couldn't afford to suffer the economic and emotional effects of raising a child who would suffer interminably with either dystrophy to die at an early age, this test will help them. On a very manifest level, then, the overall goodness of such a decision is quite apparent, isn't it? Framed like this, such a question takes no imagination and requires no philosophical, spiritual or religious underpinnings. Perfectly scientific. And perfectly inane as science is sometimes wont to be.
I wish that were the only reason why the test would be used. But I am not naive. Many cultures on this planet practice gender selection (Unnatural Selection, Hvistendahl, 2011). Over the past decades 163 million girls have been aborted. Right now, somewhere in Asia, a pregnant mother is illicitly have an ultrasound done. Ultrasounds are carried in the trunks of cars and the deliverers of the service drive to the homes of those who want to be sure their child is a boy. Girls will be aborted. The service is delivered this way because gender testing is forbidden in India. And now, China is on the alert to try to prevent abortions of girls because of the ill effects of a male dominated society. (Girls are still aborted, though.) Too many girls were aborted in the past decades and the results are catastrophic: bride buying, increased prostitution, kidnapping to name a few. We won't even discuss the effects of the impact on an aging population (who will care for them) and the increasing violence as young males without the money, status or employment to compete for wives band together in groups which promote violence. (Hvistendahl, Unnatural Selection, Chapter 13: The Bachelor, 197-215)
Michaela and Augusto Odone did not have access to such a test. But unlike other parents who discovered that their sons had fallen under the genetic predation of ALD, Augusto and Michaela were proactive, brilliant and incredibly sacred parents in caring for Lorenzo. As their son withered toward death's scythe, both attacked the disease like they were warring against a ferocious enemy, discovering its territory, its habits, its reactions. Together, with the help of a few skeptical researchers after months of trial, error and struggle, they came up with an antidote, Lorenzo's Oil. Lorenzo's condition was arrested and his death sentence commuted; he lived for another twenty-four years.
Like a painting that is priceless, their family story of love is beyond thought and imagination. Would they have wanted to trade for a peaceful, happy home, their son laid to waste on a trash heap of aborted fetuses? When they were at their lowest, most desolate and at the darkest hour, perhaps. But they did not have the stuff that I am made of, coward that I am, for I know I would not make the kind of parents that they were. And because of that, I have chosen not to have children. And thankfully, I have not ever nor will I ever have to make a decision to abort like the pregnant mothers in Asia who want sons or those in this country who will use the test to get "disease free" children. It is a decision, especially if I were aborting a girl that would haunt me the rest of my life.
So congratulations to the companies who are instrumental in continuing the cycle of Asian women aborting girls. Not only have you made it easier for them to make the decision to abort female fetuses (continuing gender genocide and male dominated societies) you will have encouraged black marketeers of the test to wrench high fees from desperate women and will have paved the way, if the governments of India and China take a firmer approach and perhaps ban abortion, to create an environment where abortion will be practiced illicitly increasing the likelihood of death for the aborting mother.
What an irony. In the name of feminism (which promoted the legalization of abortions) and scientific advancement, more females are being aborted than ever, creating male dominated cultures that further abuse females and decrease the advancement of gender balance and equality. Don't you think there is some great twinkle in the eye of the creator in all of this? Mankind/womankind know best, know better than nature (see Unnatural Selection Chapter 1 about the discussion of nature's balance in numbers between the sexes.). Well, I just don't know. I believe that women have a right to choose what to do with their own bodies. But the gross negligence of women in not using birth control "in preparation for the heat of the moment" belies a lack of respect for themselves, their unborn children, the man they are with.
Abject irresponsibility and childishness! Mentally prepubescent! I have known such women. I taught in a high school where in more than a few instances, an 11 year old right after reaching puberty would be flattered by the approach of randy young males and would have unprotected, unsensual, unsatisfying sex and become pregnant; their sisters would take them for abortions. By 16, after a few abortions, they finally would decide to have the child which would be raised by their grandmother. Birth control? Whattttt??? No Way! Abortion! The Final Solution is the best solution. Education? Forget about it when the individual is irresponsible, childish, and governed/brainwashed by the culture that one sex is "better" than the other and you must "give in" to them. (How many females really and truly believe this is not so? How many females will honestly admit that they adhered to this belief at one or more or many times in their lives?)
So with this test, women, many of them Asian, educated, professional women (They more than the poor abort their daughters because who better than they understand paternalism's ill effects.) (see Hrvistendahl) will find it easier to abort their daughters and the misery will increase for men. Quite an interesting revenge upon both sexes is it not? Especially to the gender which lays a masochistic/sadistic double whammy on itself for birthing an inferior woman in a predominately man powered world? A satisfying genocidal punishment...with an further ironic twist. Since men are more violent and in despair seek out violence against each other in a male dominated environment (Hrvistendahl) the potential for male gender genocide increases. But what the hell. We all have to go sometime. Abortion, the best way to go!