Thursday, October 08, 2009

The artificial uterus: it's coming

An article from a University of Montreal website examines a study done by a student doing her Master's in sociology.

A French biologist, Henri Atlan, is quoted in saying that in ten to a hundred years, the artificial uterus will be used for the conception, gestation and birth of a foetus (interesting terminology!).

Of course, it would be immoral from a Catholic standpoint to use this uterus for routine gestation. But it could have moral uses. For instance, it could be used in cases where the child is born too early.

Some feminists might like this contraption because it eliminates the reproductive differences between men and women. The truth is, even if women didn't have uteruses, they would still be essentially different from men.

I also think it could have some benefit for the pro-life cause. Imagine millions of people having babies in this uterus. They could see for themselves that the unborn child is a human being from conception.

It could also be anthropologically significant to see the unborn child independent of the mother. It could reinforce the case for the equality of the unborn child. If this fetus is a human being in this artificial uterus, it's equally a human being inside a mother's uterus.

I think an artificial uterus would be a disaster. I think it would mean the abortion rate would rise because the incentive to carry a pregnancy to term would be diminished. Why go through all the trouble of pregnancy when a machine can do the job for you?