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Montrose Voice, No. 272, January 10, 1986
File 009
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Montrose Voice, No. 272, January 10, 1986 - File 009. 1986-01-10. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. September 22, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/3957/show/3944.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(1986-01-10). Montrose Voice, No. 272, January 10, 1986 - File 009. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/3957/show/3944

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Montrose Voice, No. 272, January 10, 1986 - File 009, 1986-01-10, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed September 22, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/3957/show/3944.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Montrose Voice, No. 272, January 10, 1986
Contributor
  • McClurg, Henry
  • Wyche, Linda
Publisher Community Publishing Company
Date January 10, 1986
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 22329406
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Montrose Voice
Rights In Copyright
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 009
Transcript 8 MONTROSE VOICE/JANUARY 10, 1986 Braver New World of 1986 Biologists Have Re-Engineered Male and Female Roles By Walter Truett Anderson Biologists are emerging as the real revolution-makers of our time. They are changing the rules in many areas of human life, and the results are going to keep politicians and political activists busy for decades. Especially unsettling are the technologies of human productivity— articifial insemination, in vitro fertilization and embryo transplant. One hears a lot about the moral issues connected with these—like the question of when an embryo consisting of a few cells becomes a human being with civil rights. But there is something else going on that is even more politically explosive: These technologies are revising the social definitions of male and female roles. -Hd'UiMlrTT-T; _,, TAFT l^r Automotive! Some feminist leaders have responded by taking a stand against the new biologies, calling them another tool for domination of women by men. Looking ahead, they see women reduced to the role of baby factories. Some men think the same methods could portend male obsolescense. If women can conceive through artificial insemination, don't men become little more than seed factories? Clearly, human reproductivity is not what it used to be. Artificial insemination, a rarity only a few decades ago, is now routine. In vitro fertilization has progressed steadily since the first "test-tube baby" was born in 1978. Sperm and embryos can be frozen, preserved for years, shipped around the world. Embryos can be transplanted, so that one woman conceives and another carries the child in her womb and gives birth. It is now theoretically possible for a child to have five parents—a female egg donor, a male sperm donor, the woman who carries the embryo and gives birth to it, and the couple who, presumably having set this whole team into motion because of their own infertility, take the child and raise it. These are big developments for a society that already has a feminist movement, a gay liberation movement, a general questioning of sexual roles, and a lot of doubt about whether the family is on its way in or out. Not surprisingly, interest—and controversy—is especially high among feminists who divide into at least three different bodies of opinion: —Anti: An international feminist conference held in Germany last spring came up with a resolution opposing new biotechnologies as a conspiracy to seduce women into "industrial exploitation of their own bodies or body/ parts." —"Right to motherhood:" Many femi nists support the "right to biological motherhood," including that of single women and lesbians to conceive through artifica! insemination. —Pro: Still other feminists see technol ogy as the ultimate hope for liberation Shulamith Firestone set this keynote over a decade ago with her proposal that children be conceived and gestated in artifical wombs, thereby achieving "the freeing of women from the tyranny of their biology ... and the diffussion of the childbearing and childbearing role to the society as a whole." It is not clear which position has the most supporters, but the current course of events, both technologically and politically, clearly favors the "right to motherhood" group. Artificial insemination (Al) is the most developed and widely practiced of the new biotechnologies. Nearly 20,000 children a year are conceived by this method in the United States alone, in comparison to about 1,000 children worldwide conceived through in vitro fertilization. Al is also the easiest to perform, and can be done by people with virtually no medical training. That makes it the hardest to outlaw or control. Some states at first refused to recognize its legality, holding that in cases where a couple had conceived through artificial insemination by donor, the baby was illegitimate, the father was not its legal father, and the mother was guilty of adultery. Some states still make artificial insemination difficult for single women, lesbians and people in unconventional marriage arrangements, but such policies don't have much effect on anybody really determined. The director of a feminist sperm bank in California recently told me that most of her clients are single women, and over a third are lesbians. On the other hand, the day is not near when fetuses are grown in artificial wombs at society's expense; the technology does not yet exist for such an enterprise, and neither do the political structures nor the cultural consensus to support one. Nevertheless, the world has already changed profoundly. Women who want to—married or not, straight or not—can now become biological mothers without anything but the most distant and anonymous male assistance. "Conventional" couples who cannot conceive normally are able to have children anyway. Men can make an insurance donation to a sperm bank, then get a vasectomy. And the development of amniocentesis—a test which can discover defects in fetuses—has played a large role in the striking increase in the number of mothers in their thirties and forties. Meanwhile, there is reason to believe that several new products in birth control technology are going to make it increasingly easy for people to decide not to have children. The effect of all these technological advances is not to dehumanize, but rather to widen the range of personal choices- even as they shake the ancient structure of values and beliefs about motherhood, fatherhood, parenthood. Amidst this flux, rigid political positions quickly become dated. State governments all over the country are scrambling to produce laws and regulations that keep up with the changes. We debate abortion, fight for feminist and masculine agendas, and do not quite perceive that the ground continues to shift beneath us as we talk, that the human species is a different kind of biological organism from what it once was. 1411 Taft I 522-2190 ! ! * Cooling System check I & flush $27'5 * Transmission Service & f; Check $29« • Oil, Filter & Lube $24" j ASK FOR CHIEF BUTTROCK Time to check your cooling system1 — HUM IL--'I,I1H — New Year's Special Monday-Thursday Members onlyl 864 per movie plus deposit, adult films not included MON.-THURS.: 10am-8pm FRI.-SAT.: 10am-10pm SUN: 1pm-6pm WE CARRY ADULT FILMS 2016 MONTROSE Houston, Texas 77006 529-5544 THE CRUISE Are You Looking To Meet New MEN? Then the Cruise Connection is Just For You. Not Just a Dating Service. This is an Innovative way to Cruise and to meet the men you are Cruising. 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