Australians who want to choose the sex of their baby have been forking out $15,000 to travel to the United States and undergo medical interventions in the last five years.
In fact, the number of hopeful parents seeking the service has doubled, sparking calls for the screening practice to be legalised in Australia.
Daniel Potter, a California-based IVF specialist who is in Australia speaking about the issue, has described the issue as one of “reproductive freedom”. He questions why people are allowed to have an abortion, but confronted with barriers when they want to have a child.
Dr Potter who runs the biggest fertility clinic on the US’s West Coast has spoken about seeing around 20 Australian couples per week in his US practice.
The controversy lies in the idea that people will desire designer babies, or children based on sexist expectations about what it means to be a boy or girl.
Despite protestations about the ethical issues that arise from sex-selection, IVF Australia’s medical director Peter Illingworth is also a supporter. He doesn’t believe it is a matter of preference but one that families decide based on health concerns.
Prof. Illingworth also believes the demand or preference for either sex is fairly even.
Why would you select your baby’s sex or do you think it’s wrong?