Raising Our Dead Son

With such a plethora of supersense related stories to report this week I thought I would investigate this one. Consider this. If you and I are a couple and we decide to make a doll from the hair on our heads, that said doll would be half mine and half yours and nobody else’s – yes? Now imagine that the said doll disappears but that you and I discover the whereabouts of its location some several years later. Who does it belong to? You and I – yes? So would it be wrong for the authorities to destroy the doll? It seems an obvious yes.

Now replace hair with DNA and try the logic again. While going through his personal records, the parents of Mark Speranza discovered that their dead son deposited his semen in a tissue bank in New York six months before he died of cancer  more than 10 years ago. His parents sought to reclaim their son’s sperm in order to impregnate a surrogate mother but had their claim refused in a court of law this week. They argued that as they had paid the yearly maintenance fee for the sample, they were entitled to it. However, the court ruled that handing over the sample would violate the rule that all sperm must be screened  before impregnation.

Somehow I think this is just a health technicality. We all know that the real reason is not concern about giving birth to a damaged baby but rather the ethical validity of parents raising their children from the dead, or at least their belief they can. What do you think?


Filed under In the News

7 responses to “Raising Our Dead Son

  1. I’m sure the would-be grandparents are grieving, but I think they really need to get go and move on with their lives…

  2. brucehood

    Hi Diane,
    So glad you dropped by. Yes.. it is understandable but it does reveal a yearning to replicate. Otherwise, one is faced with the prospect of leaving nothing behind with no offspring. So I think it is actually quite a selfish yearning.

  3. Well, after reading the article, I definitely agree that the lab definitely needs serious admonishing for accepting money in breach of their own contract. Shifty doesn’t begin to cover that issue.

    As for the justification for producing another child with their son’s semen, I can’t agree with that at all. Can’t they just jump forward in time and imagine that this new kid develops cancer, even dies because of it. Could they really deal with the responsibility of putting another child in the way of such suffering?

    That and, as Diane says, there is only one way to cope with grief – accept and move on.

    I also have a suggestion that might seem a bit mercenary. At the very least, the parents deserve to have their deposits back with interest from Repro ($400 a year over what, 10 years? would have accrued a fair amount). They can then give a far less risky tribute to their deceased son by donating all of it to a cancer charity. This would not endanger the life of another human being, and could also help save the lives of many others.

    See, if the world would just listen to me…;)

  4. brucehood

    Katie you put the world to rights!

    They may get the wrong deposit back… sorry, I know, regressing again.

  5. There was a similar situation a few years back concerning parents who son recently died. They wanted to extract semen from his recently deceased body, so they could impregnate a surrogate. I understand that they are grieving and want to keep their son alive, but there is a natural grieving process and this is not part of it. It is a great loss to lose a child, but know when to move on.

  6. And the original judge’s name was Solomon . . .

  7. The letter of the law is like the bear grease on the wagon wheel, it helps the thing run in a smooth straight line. Some of these letters tend to have ridges and sharp corners which are fine if you’re in the next field over but horrible if you’re in close quarters to it. It all seems as it should be. Life is never a painless adventure.

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