IVF/Abortion legislation

  silverous 08:12 21 May 08

I can't help but think it must be a minority of people that MPs were considering the wishes of when they voted that:

i) Fertility doctors do not need to consider a male role when providing IVF treatment to women


ii) Not lowering the legal limit for abortion from 24 weeks.

I understand it is difficult enough getting fertility treatment on the NHS already and suspect that it is probably easier to get treatment as a single mum/lesbian than a couple for fear of discriminating.

Regarding abortion if you see images of babies at even 12 weeks it is clear that they are more than just 'cells' and so again I can only imagine MPs felt the need to represent a minority who would support effectively killing what is clearly a small human being for anything other than the most grave reasons. In my view, the limit should be 12 weeks as I understand it is in other countries.

I struggle to believe that the majority do not support these views - are MPs supposed to represent the majority or a minority?

I would appreciate your views.

  laurie53 08:21 21 May 08

As a male I would not be arrogant enough to tell any woman what to do with her body.

As a male if I did not want my sperm impregnating a single mum or a lesbian then I would not donate it.

  €dstowe 08:55 21 May 08

Be careful that you distinguish between in vitro fertilisation and artificial insemination. The first is a very complex (and often unreliable) process; the second, on the other hand, is easy and can be carried out by almost anyone who wishes to do it.

The number of lesbians requiring IVF is, I would conjecture, EXTREMELY small.

Conversely, the number of lesbians carrying out AI is quite a lot - very often on a do-it-yourself basis. Also, there are a huge number of lesbians wishing to become parents conceive in the conventional way - there are a lot of men who fantasise about things like that and would volunteer.

Remember as well that lesbian couples have the advantage that if one of the pair has difficulty in becoming pregnant it is quite possible that the other partner may do so easily - something that is not available to so-called "straight" couples.

  silverous 09:05 21 May 08

To Laurie... This is about being a human being not male or female, the government - on our behalf, sets legislation ans doesn't avoid the issue because it is a female's body.

Edstowe... Good points. I'm very aware of what IVF is, and suspect that the legislation is more to do with that than DIY jobs at home which no-one can do anything about. I was referring to legislation which presumably DIYers will choose to avoid.

  carver 09:11 21 May 08

The role of any government should be to take into account the minority.

It has been proven that at 23 weeks the chance of survival is very small, after 24 weeks it is extremely high.

There is a small minority of people it would have effected very badly, they would have been the ones who's baby had been diagnosed with Spina Bifida. This cannot be diagnosed until late into the pregnancy and for some people the idea of bringing up a severely handicapped child is not something they want.

Because you have certain views you shouldn't want to force them onto other people and as for 12 weeks some women don't even know they are pregnant until about 10 weeks. So it would be a step back to the days of the back street abortionist, is that what you want.

  silverous 09:26 21 May 08

From the posts so far it would not appear to be the minority at all, perhaps I was wrong on that.

To me it isn't about survival chances. Look at the images of a baby (or foetus as they are referred to) from 12 weeks onwards, now particularly if that baby is healthy what possible justification can there be for terminating it?

"Because you have certain views you shouldn't want to force them onto other people"...unfortunately that is exactly what legislation does.

I would say, and my experience is limited in this, that most women would know well before 12 weeks as many have their first scan at the hospital at that stage, quoting occasional instances doesn't support the argument well - also, even if they don't know I would argue that once they find out, again unless there are very grave circumstances, why should they then have 12 weeks to choose to abort?

  silverous 09:27 21 May 08

Also, I'm not saying the government shouldn't take into account the minority but that has to be balanced with the views of the majority surely otherwise we are ruled by the minority? In any case it seems I am wrong on that based on the posts thus far unless those who support my views remain silent !

  anskyber 09:28 21 May 08

I agree with laurie53. The role of Government is to consider all people within the population which may involve doing something against the wish of the majority.

We live in a democracy which is designed for all not one which slavishly follows popular opinion at the expense of minorities; I think that is the right way.

  silverous 09:57 21 May 08

I think you are misunderstanding my point. I'm not saying that the government should ignore the minority, in no way have I said that. On that basis problems would be presented for example to ethnic minorities. As I've said above however if, as it seems, this may be the majority view then majority vs minority is irrelevant anyway.

  carver 10:25 21 May 08

I think that majority vs minority has nothing to do with this it's more to do with common sense, and to use the argument about what a foetus looks like at 12 weeks is so wrong. That is like buying a puppy because it looked so cute.

Most tests can only be carried out after about 14 weeks, this is because the actually test carries a small risk of miscarriage, so any termination on health grounds could not be carried out on your argument.

I'm just pleased that reason has prevailed over sentimentality.

  silverous 10:48 21 May 08

Please don't misinterpret my comments or trivialise them - I said nothing about "cute" and it is nonesense to compare the situations. I referred to how they look to illustrate that they resemble human beings at that stage so to treat them as a bunch of cells without rights is wrong.

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