Bang, We're Dead
How our universe will end, and another will be born.
A 63-year-old woman will give birth. Most fertility clinics don't assist women past age 45, but British authorities don't restrict IVF by age, and this British woman got help from Severino Antinori, a cloning advocate who has helped several women become mothers in their 60s. Critics' arguments: 1) These women are already too old to be fit parents. 2) They'll be dead or defunct before the kids can grow up. 3) They're treating kids like acquisitions. 4) This woman already has two adult kids; she's just doing this so she can have a kid with her second husband. Defenders' arguments: 1) She has made sure the kid will be provided for. 2) Health, not age, determines parental fitness, and this woman is healthy. 3) Leave her alone so her kid can grow up in peace. 4) Antinori promises to offer IVF only to "couples with at least 20 years' life expectancy." (For Human Nature's takes on IVF restrictions, click here and here; for an update on the health risks posed by older fathers, click here.)
Latest Human Nature columns: 1) Bill Clinton slurps the soda companies. 2) It's time for gay covenant marriage. 3) Polygamy and Big Love. 4) The war on fat. 5) Does God answer prayers? 6) The blurred line between contraception and abortion. 7) The difference between gay marriage and polygamy. 8) Stop giving healthy people Social Security. 9) The temptation of remote-controlled killing. (Click here to return to top of page.)
Will Saletan covers science, technology, and politics for Slate and says a lot of things that get him in trouble.