His interest in bioethics provides an interesting and educated response to the issues of ART and donor conception. One post in particular is "The Birth of American Donor Insemination: A Modern Techno-Myth" describes the story of the first DI procedure in America and how the unethical behaviors of the doctor in 1884 has led the way for the American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Association of Reproductive Medicine (AARM) to continually legitimize and advocate anonymous donors and secrecy.
Here are some interesting excerpts:
"I suspect the identity of the “true” biological father was kept secret for three reasons: 1) It was initially kept secret from both the husband and wife to protect Dr. Pancoast and his students from recriminations in case the merchant and/or his wife found their decision to inseminate her to be dishonorable or criminal; 2) The husband wanted to protect his wife from the potential shame of knowing she’d been inseminated, unknowingly, while passed out, by an anonymous man and; 3) Not wishing to lose face in his wife’s eyes the husband did not want his wife to know that he was incapable of impregnating her. In any case, the chief motivating factor in maintaining donor anonymity in this first ever use of human DI in the U.S. was - unambiguously – fear; each actor in the scenario was afraid that what they had done might be perceived as wrong and sought to protect themselves from wrongdoing by cloaking themselves in secrecy."
"In the absence of any federal or state legislation since 1884, the decisions made by Dr. Pancoast and his six anonymous students have, remarkably, set the standards for a medical practice that has become increasingly common and even, in the past few decades, highly commodified."And my personal favorite:
Celebrating 125 years of Donor Insemination!Creating Life and Avoiding Responsibility!
Please check Shawn's blog out! I can't wait to read his memoir when it is released.