How to legally traffic children in the USA...

Here is a case that perfectly illustrates the wickedness of our social systems today.

It's not hard to see there are major problems, but which one should we focus on? There are bribes, threats, child abandonment, contract killers, kidnapping, child-trafficking, and it's all going down in Connecticut and Michigan. The number of people involved is mind-boggling. Oh, and it's all perfectly legal.

Woman A gave up some of her eggs.

Woman B and Man C purchased those eggs and paid Doctor D to fertilize them with Man C's sperm, creating babies E, F and G at least.

Woman B and Man C found needy Woman H through facilitator I, and offered to pay for her medical expenses if she got pregnant with baby E. A contract was drawn up by lawyer J, with some additional conditions and incentives. The contract stated that needy woman H is obligated to sell baby girl E to Woman B and Man C for $22,000 when baby girl E gets older. Needy Woman H must also pay doctor K to kill baby girl E if she isn't "normal" when she is older.

Needy woman H becomes baby girl E's mother, and later it is discovered that baby girl E isn't normal. Needy woman H refuses to allow doctor K to kill her daughter, baby girl E. Woman B and man C sweeten the deal by offering $10,000 to needy woman H if she will get doctor K to kill the baby, but she refuses. 

Are you confused yet? It only gets more confusing. 

But let's just stop here and point out the obvious. What we have here is a baby factory. International law prevents babies from being bought and sold across international lines. Baby factories are officially frowned upon in polite company. But if you've got the green, for a cool $100,000 you can buy a genetically customized baby right here in the good old US of A. 

May God have mercy on little baby girl S.

Joseph and his wife, Heidi, have two children, Tate and Eliza Jane. Joseph graduated from Vanderbilt University and Clearnote Pastors College. Joseph serves as pastor of Clearnote Church in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Comments

Sick, isn't it?

Tim, I hope you don't mind if I put in a plug for my friend, Jennifer Lahl's work. She is a Christian who is it work on her 4th documentary. This film will focus on pregmancu surrogates. Previous films have looked at stem cell research, egg donation, and the children of anonymous sperm donors. 

Anyone interested in learning more or buying the DVDs can check out her work here:

http://www.cbc-network.org/

Kamilla

Well said.  I remember a few years back where I knew a few women who contemplated either surrogate motherhood and/or "selling eggs".  I knew something was wrong, but didn't put it into the terms you did. 

If there is a next time, I shall.

"they could induce birth (the baby wouldn't survive) or they could do a dilation and evacuation, in which case the pregnancy would be vacuumed out of the womb..."

The article constantly (and rightly) talks about "the baby", but whenever it talks about abortion the baby magically becomes a "pregnancy".

It might as awkwardly describe a man getting his wedding ring resized:

"This ring is too loose," the man told the jewelry store clerk as he slid the marriage off his finger.

She is a baby, a fetus, or a pregnancy, depending on the changing mood of the one who considers killing her. That is evil.

This might be the worse so far, but there are all sorts of arrangements that don't pass the smell test.  I am probably one of the few that has a hard time with single women adopting children.  I also wonder about couples freezing embryos for future use, then farming them out to multiple couples or surrogates because they feel that it would be wrong to destroy them.  I know that science can intervene in many childbearing situations, but maybe nature (ie:God) should also play a role.

Denver Todd wrote:

I am probably one of the few that has a hard time with single women adopting children. 

If you mean that the ideal for adoption is a family with Mom, Dad, and possibly another child(ren), I'm with you.

But if the alternative is for the child is to move from one foster home or group home to another, or even be in long-term foster care, I respectfully disagree. The adoptive Mom would give this child a "forever" home and hopefully an extended family with grandparents, at least a couple of aunts/uncles and cousins, as well as support from her friends. 

And you never know, maybe God will bring the adoptive Mom the right guy who would love to be her husband and an instant Dad.

Sue, if I had made a more comprehensive post, it would have concluded with something like this: I know that someone will say that life with a single mother is better than being in an orphanage or foster care, so the former is a positive option.  I strongly disagree. Making moral decisions because one poor choice is better than another is a poor way to operate.  The same argument can be used for a same-sex couple adopting a child.  Or how about a same-sex-attracted person being encouraged to marry another because that is preferable to promiscuity.  Or farming out 20 embryos to 20 different couples being better than destroying the embyos, but maybe the best option is to not create them in the first place.

I would imagine that the real reason a single woman adopts is not that she cares so much about a child, as much as that her biological clock is ticking away but no husband is in sight. My answer to the single woman who cares so much about the child is to contribute money to a married couple that couldn't afford to adopt otherwise.  I can't think of anything worse than jumping from one type of family replacement to another.   I don't know the stats, but I am thinking that undwed mothers don't have it particularly easy finding a husband. 

Hi Denver,

Right now, I only have time to respond to the first part of your post:

Sue, if I had made a more comprehensive post, it would have concluded with something like this: I know that someone will say that life with a single mother is better than being in an orphanage or foster care, so the former is a positive option.  I strongly disagree. Making moral decisions because one poor choice is better than another is a poor way to operate.  The same argument can be used for a same-sex couple adopting a child.  Or how about a same-sex-attracted person being encouraged to marry another because that is preferable to promiscuity.  Or farming out 20 embryos to 20 different couples being better than destroying the embyos, but maybe the best option is to not create them in the first place.

After reading this comment, something didn't sit right with me, and it turned out to be this. In my opinion, I don't consider a single woman adopting a child that needs a home immoral, like I would think of the other examples you mention -- condoning same-sex marriage to avoid promiscuity, allowing same-sex couples to adopt children as opposed to having the children languishing in foster care, and creating more embryos than will ever be necessary for a couple to try to have a child.*

If you were talking about a single woman wanting her own biological child so badly that she would use donor sperm to get pregnant, that would be a horse of a different color and I would consider that immoral and selfish and agree with you 100%. 

__________________________

*I believe that this is not a problem in Germany because they never freeze embryos for future use. They only insert 3 embryos into the woman during one reproductive cycle. I wish this was the way we did it here.

Sue, actually, it is immoral to deprive a child of a father or a mother. Every type of home besides one with a permanently married father and mother substantially increases the risks to the children of that home. This is true across all kinds of measures. Children in any other circumstance are more likely to live in poverty both as a child and afterwards as an adult. They are more likely to have serious psychological problems, to fail out of school, to be raped or abused in other ways, to end up in jail, and on and on. The only exception? Children living with a widow or widower. 

So Denver's logic seems good and his argument needs to be dealt with.

My God. This is what we have come to. Examples like this story showcase how twisted our thinking about bearing children has become. The couple paying Kelley should never have used in-vitro fertilization to begin with. Kelley should never have become a surrogate mother. Problem solved.

I know a number of Christians who support surrogate pregnancy, donating eggs, sperm, etc. Unfortunately I doubt reading this story will have an effect on them. But, I'm going to send it their way all the same.

Joseph,

With the possible exception of a permanent foster home (which I believe are rare), what are we to do with children living indefinitely in group homes or being shuffled from foster home to foster home on a regular basis? If many more married couples would rise up and adopt all the adoptable children, then there would be only a fraction of the current problem. Of course, most of the children we're talking about are older, a sibling group, and/or special needs children -- a challenge to both two-parent and single-parent families alike.

And what about the fact that when you age out of foster care/group homes "you're on your own, baby?" At least, if a child had a loving single Mom or Dad they'd have someone to help them to navigate the world of young adulthood.

Also, do you know about outcomes of children living in foster homes vs. those in single-parent homes? Do the outcomes of children in single-parent homes figure in the effect of support from church groups, mentors, Big Brothers/Sisters, extended family, and the like? I'm not doubting your data; I've read the same things, but just questioning whether it's more nuanced that it seems.

 I also wonder if there might be a difference betweeen single parents (men or women) who choose to adopt a child and those who are thrust into the role of single parenthood involuntarily after a divorce or women who intentionally bear children without marrying the fathers of their child(ren)?

You may disagree, but here is a real-life example of a single-parent adoption that I believe was a blessing to both Mom and her adoptive family.

This woman was in her late 40's and was our veterinarian for many years. She had a lot of land and a hobby farm about 20 mi from her vet practice. She began by adopting two brothers from someplace in Central America. A few years later she adopted their three siblings so the whole family was reunited. Her veterinary practice had been so successful that after she and the children had gotten settled she sold her practice and became a stay-at-home mom to her five children. I just can't see why this was worse than having these brothers and sisters stay in an orphanage until they became young adults.

Dear Sue,

You're doing a fine job making the case now. I just wanted to make clear that we are actually talking about a choice between two *evils,* not a choice between an evil and a not-quite-perfect.

Denver either thinks it's not better to pick a "lesser" evil, or that it's not actually lesser. You claim it is a lesser evil and worth picking.

As to the differences between group or foster homes and single parent homes, I confess I don't have the data in my head. I don't think I've even seen it.

Still, I think that we are largely addressing symptoms when we focus on the need for single-parent homes to make up for all of these kids in group or foster homes. Yes, let's address the acute need by exhorting Christian families to get involved in this work. But let's focus on fixing the root problem, which will require doing away with laws that promote the dissolution of the family, the latest example being ObamaCare.

-Joseph

"Sue, actually, it is immoral to deprive a child of a father or a mother. Every type of home besides one with a permanently married father and mother substantially increases the risks to the children of that home. "

However, a child moving from foster home to foster home is also at great risk. If it were your child, would you prefer the fate of the foster home or the single parent? What if it were you?

Jim, did you see my previous comment talking about two evils? Until I'm sure we agree that it is a tragedy when a child is adopted by a single woman, I can't bring myself to compare that tragedy with the tragedy of the foster-care system. And in point of fact, both of those "solutions" are put forward as legitimate fixes by the same wicked social system. 

Sue is rightly worried about children that are older. And again, our social system exacerbates the problem by propping up wicked parents in their wickedness until the child is so damaged psychologically that there is almost no hope for them to be anything but institutionalized. Then we lay a guilt-trip on Christian parents for being hesitant to bring them into our homes.

The Christian family was perfectly willing to adopt her when she was living with them at 14 months old, and it was clear that the parents were unfit. But the system sends her back to her father, condemning her to bounce in and out of the system until she is a 14 year-old sociopath.

Let's admit that the system is broken, rather than arguing about whether immoral option A is better than immoral option B. If I'm forced to choose between one or the other of those, I guess I might choose adoption by a single mom in *some* circumstances. I'm certainly not going to say that it is always better than a foster home. 

Nice to come in on an interesting side discussion.  One thing that does not appear here, however, is that the command to care for widows and orphans is given by James to the Church, not just individual families.  And so when confronted with the true abuses of our nation's foster systems, we need to consider what we ought to do as a church, no?

Beyond obvious things--the nurseries, AWANA, introducing single people to each other during discipleship, and the like--one thing that could be hugely helpful is for people to come alongside other adoptive parents.  And if the church did--people helping with things as simple as bikes and as complex as music or whatever--I have to wonder if a lot of the problems of "lesser evils" would resolve themselves.

It would take a lot more face to face interactions than a lot of us are comfortable with, but.....

Not sure how this fits in with the overall discussion, but I thought I would throw it in for good measure:

http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/15/us/man-32-adopted/index.html?hpt=hp_c2

According to a thread on John Piper's Facebook page, this baby was adopted into a Christian family. What's even better than having a mother AND a father? -- A mother and a father who are believers. Here is the post on Desiring God blog, with a slightly different spin on the turn of events: http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/the-light-does-shine-in-the-darkness

Kamilla,

The work that your friend is doing is very eye-opening. I haven't watched any of the documentaries (yet), but did watch her interview and read some information on the website. I had no idea how uninformed I was about such things! Thank you for sharing.

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