Letter: Gender selection may be inhuman

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The Independent Online
Sir: Today's leading article arguing against state regulation of gender selection clinics pulls an old trick - but none the less unconvincing for that. To argue that having gender selection clinics is better than having foetuses aborted abroad, or infanticide, and so should be allowed is to bypass the main question, which is the propriety of gender selection itself.

What our society is saying, if it allows gender selection for non-theraputic reasons, is that babies are a commodity, to be purchased at will like any other consumer durable, and to be rejected if they do not give satisfaction. Given that this attitude is, simply, inhuman, our society should not sanction it. The question of what further unacceptable behaviour will be indulged in by people who want to get round this ban is irrelevant.

Yours faithfully,


Merton College


16 March