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Friday, September 30, 2011

Oh the Irony: "Father" of the Pill

The BBC has a rather strange interview with Carl Djerassi, one of the researchers who developed the first oral contraceptive that quickly became known as the Pill.

The odd reasoning he employes to tout the superiority of IVF aside, I think it's funny that the BBC called him the "father" of the Pill. The Father of Fatherhood Prevention. Man. Gotta love that tongue-in-cheek British cheek.

(The terminology actually appears not in the page with the article and the video of the interview, but on a banner ad elsewhere on their website promoting the interview.)

As to the interview itself, he supports IVF over natural conceptions because every child conceived by IVF is "wanted" compared with only about 75% of those conceived naturally.

He is not thinking about all those children slated for "selective reduction" - which is to say abortion - in the case of twins, triplets, or more developing as a consequence of IVF.

Nor is he thinking about all those surplus embryos stuck in a frozen limbo because no one wants them.

And "IVF" properly refers to the fertilization in the lab, the union of sperm and ovum in the petri dish; we use it to include implantation of embryos and the whole thing soup to nuts. But such in vitro fertilization is also used to create embryos for research. I suppose they're wanted in some way... but still, it is not that they are wanted as children.

And all you pro-choicers out there: Djerassi talks about "children" and not about anything pre-human.

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