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About Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, & Intersex Communities & Human Biotechnology


New genetic and reproductive technologies affect LGBTQI communities in exceptional ways.

Some of these are beneficial. For example, advances in assisted reproductive technologies enable a growing number of gay men and lesbians to become parents of biologically related children.

However, some advocates of reproductive cloning assert that gays and lesbians in particular should support it, because it would allow same-sex couples to have children that are genetically related only to a member of the couple, free of "external" DNA. Of course, such techniques do nothing to address the underlying issues of inequality and homophobia that plague society.

Genetic theories play as strong a role in shaping our social and individual identities as they do in shaping our families. Recent years have seen a resurgence of assumptions that complex human behaviors, including sexual orientation, are simply products of our genes. Though scientists have yet to find a genetic marker for homosexuality, many continue to try. Such genetic determinism and reductionism open the door to new forms of discrimination.



Online Extra: Political Notes: CA bill protecting same-sex parents advancesby Matthew S. BajkoBay Area ReporterAugust 27th, 2015CA bill revising legal parentage for families using assisted reproduction and donor gametes moves forward to Governor's desk.
Nepal Bans Surrogate Births ó Worry for Gay Israelis by JTAThe ForwardAugust 27th, 2015Nepalís Supreme Court issued an injunction to stop surrogate pregnancies ó joining Thailand and India ó blocking future foreign intended parents seeking surrogates.
Law Banning Commercial Surrogacy Takes Effect ThursdayBangkok PostJuly 29th, 2015Controversy continues to swirl around children born before Thailand's new law was passed this winter.
Sympathetic Sci-Fiby Joshua RothmanNew YorkerJuly 14th, 2015The new sci-fi series "Sense8" fantasizes about human "enhancement" via broadening empathy and social connection.
A BC Alum's New Site Links LGBT Couples With Egg Donors, Sperm Donors & Surrogatesby Rebecca StrongBostInnoJuly 13th, 2015Bird Meets Bee, an ART matchmaker website launching in October, would feature customizable user profiles and filter criteria such as "LGBT status, heritage, hair color, eye color, or height."
Eliminating Intersex Babies Is not a Legitimate Use of Genetic Embryo Testingby Celeste OrrThe GuardianJuly 11th, 2015Using preimplantation genetic diagnosis to select against embryos with culturally devalued bodies, like intersex people and people with disabilities, is simply a contemporary example of eugenics.
Don't Mistake Genetics for Fateby Andrew Gelman & Kaiser FungThe Daily BeastJuly 11th, 2015Itís easy for the media to get misled on studies that seem to support genetic determinism. The result is that readers are exposed only to the puffery but only rarely to the skepticism.
Family Equality and Surrogacyby Elliot HosmanBiopolitical TimesJuly 9th, 2015With marriage equality on the books, the dignity of LGBTQ families calls for an ongoing conversation about the regulation of the ART and surrogacy industries.
Surrogate Children Get Legal Recognition in Franceby Philippe SottoTimeJuly 3rd, 2015While surrogacy will remain banned in France, children born abroad through this practice will now be legally tied to their parents and will be granted birth certificates and French citizenship.
French Families Sue State to Recognize Surrogate Birthsby Philippe SottoAssociated PressJune 19th, 2015The case could change how surrogate births are handled in France, where infertility treatments are highly regulated and where many consider it unethical to make money off human reproduction.
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