CBS This Morning discusses the contract that Nick Loeb and Sofia Vergara had regarding their offspring, two girl embryos who are frozen in storage.
The participants in this report get sloppy with their language in a way that dehumanizes the human victims in this case. The anchor says that Sofia Vergara will not release the embryos, because "she doesn’t want to have a child with Nick Loeb."
Of course, that decision is in the past. She made it when she and Mr. Loeb went through the IVF process.
The embryos already exist so Ms. Vergara already has children with Nick Loeb. Norah O’Donnell describes the contract: "Nick Loeb signed that consent that the baby can only be brought to life if both parents signed that consent." Once again, the babies are already alive, so bringing life is not the issue. Nikki Klieman offers a similar obfuscation:
One of the things about public policy is: Do we want to force a woman to become a mother of a child that she does not want with a person whom she does not want it with?
Did Nick Loeb force her to go through the IVF process? No. Ms. Vergara volunteered to be a mother when she voluntarily undertook the process that created her children. She already is a mother and no one forced her into it. Because they were not married, Mr. Vergara and Mr. Loeb were grossly irresponsible in creating these embryos.
They compounded that error when they put those embryos in frozen storage. According to the terms of the contract, both parents have to agree in order to allow the embryos to be defrosted and carried to birth. But the baseline assumption of the contract, that the embryos are property, is invalid, so the contract is invalid and should have no power.
Parents can transfer their obligation through contract, but they should never be allowed to merely ignore their obligation to care for their children.