Thursday, June 24, 2010

Brave New India

"This law radically changes our society and the structure of the family and its values," said Varkey Cardinal Vithayathil, C.SS.R., Syro-Malabar archbishop of Ernakulam–Angamaly in Kerala of this news reported by Nirmala Carvalho — Indian law to legalise uterus rental, making children genetically orphans. His Eminence continued, "A child that develops over a nine-month period may no longer have a biological tie under the law with the mother."

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4 Comments:

Blogger S.M. Stirling said...

If the child isn't genetically related to the woman who gestated it, then why -should- it have a legal tie to her?

Someone else's egg, someone else's sperm, after all.

You could argue that surrogacy should be outlawed, but that means telling a lot of extremely poor women that they can't get enough money to buy a house or start a business for 9 month's work. Plus of course the women who don't get children.

Who is being harmed here? Why should the State be involved?

11:16 AM  
Blogger The Western Confucian said...

"You could argue that surrogacy should be outlawed..." Yes, this is obviously a violation of natural law.


"... but that means telling a lot of extremely poor women that they can't get enough money to buy a house or start a business for 9 month's work." Ends never justify immporal means.

"Plus of course the women who don't get children." There is no right to a child.

"Who is being harmed here?" Our human nature.

"Why should the State be involved?" One wishes it didn't have to be, and that the Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, and Jain bodies of India were strong enough in their particular communities to effectively proscribe this abomination.

10:36 PM  
Anonymous S.M. Stirling said...

"Yes, this is obviously a violation of natural law."

-- natural law -can't- be violated.

Nobody can violate the Inverse Square Law or make the angles of an equilateral triangle add up to anything but 180.

Natural law is part of the structure of the universe. Laws which can be violated are human constructs. As the Greek philosopher said, "Nomos [local custom] is King."

"Ends never justify immporal means."

-- actually that's not true even under Catholic canon law.

For example, a just war still involves deliberately killing people who have done nothing to deserve it as individuals.

"Our human nature."

-- our human nature, being part of natural law, can't be harmed.

It's our human nature to manipulate the physical universe to get what we want; agriculture springs to mind, or antibiotic medicine.

"One wishes it didn't have to be, and that the Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, and Jain bodies of India were strong enough in their particular communities to effectively proscribe this abomination."

-- in which case they'd be strong enough to slaughter each other over points of doctrine... oh, yeah, they do that in India. Fairly often.

Thomas Jefferson once observed that the reason he had no right to regulate his neighbor's religion was that whether his neighbor worshipped one god, thirty, or none at all neither picked his pocket nor broke his leg.

2:51 AM  
Blogger Stephen said...

Two quick points in response to S.M. Stirling:

1) Laws of nature (i.e., physical laws) are not the same as natural law. Conflating the two displays a stunning ignorance of the latter.

2) [Ends never justify immoral means is] actually... not true even under Catholic canon law.

First off, canon law pertains to the internal organization and governance of the Church. The Church's moral teaching is what you're taking issue with.

Moreover, your argument fails on merit as well as ignorance of facts. The moral law forbids the direct intentional killing of innocent human beings. Just war theory is an extension of the natural right to defend oneself against an unjust aggressor using proportionate means to repel the aggression. If a person kills another in the course of repelling the other's unjust aggression, that does not constitute immoral means as long as the use of force was proportional to the aggression being repelled.

By contrast, your contention that "a just war still involves deliberately killing people who have done nothing to deserve it as individuals" is patently false. In terms of killing enemy combatants, if they are engaged in unjust aggression (whether or not by their own choice or by following an unjust order from higher authority), then said killing constitutes legitimate self-defense. By contrast, if a war or any act therein deliberately targets persons who truly "have done nothing to deserve it as individuals" (e.g., civilian populations, soldiers who have surrendered or been taken prisoner, etc.), that war or act of war is by definition unjust.

Argument FAIL.

3:45 AM  

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