Raise your hand if 2021 flew by! Even with COVID-19 and the lockdowns, a year that could have felt like it lasted a lifetime, just whizzed by for me. But not to give up on my annual tradition of picking winners and losers, in the spirit of those who either modeled what we stand for here at the CBC, or those who worked against our mission and vision for our shared human future, I give you my list of winners and losers. Here are my picks from last year if you want to read them too.
Trey Cox lost his wife Lydia in 2021. Lydia had surrogate pregnancy on her bucket list because she wanted to help an infertile couple have a child. Sadly, as our readers know, surrogacy is not without risks and Lydia died of a pregnancy related complication called Amniotic Fluid Embolism (AFE). Trey was courageous enough to chat with me in this video interview and speak about his wife, his love for her, and his call to have more research done to better inform people about surrogacy. That video made its way around the world and has been translated and subtitled into Chinese.
Some notable books and their authors are winners in 2021. Several important ones were released that I want to praise. First, there is Kathleen Stock’s “Material Girls”. Then came Helen Joyce’s book, “TRANS: When Ideology Meets Reality”. And most recently, Kara Dansky’s book, “The Abolition of Sex: How the ‘Transgender’ Agenda Harms Women and Girls”. All these books support a sex-based view of what it means to be human, male, and female, and what is at stake when we allow ideology to take over biological reality. For those of you who want to know more about gender criticism, these books are a great place to start. Kara has been a guest on our Venus Rising podcast, and slated in the New Year will be Kathleen and Helen. Be sure to follow Venus Rising so you don’t miss these interviews.
Who doesn’t love a good podcast? This year, we were treated to a newly released podcast, Humanize, hosted by a good friend of the CBC, Wesley Smith. Full disclosure, Wesley was for many years a consultant to the CBC and he’s also a dear friend of mine, so I was thrilled when he invited me to be one of his guests on his podcast. Wesley covers all the topics near and dear to CBC’s mission on science, ethics, human dignity, and more. Check him out!
Joyce Harper came onto our radar in 2021 when she was Kallie Fell’s guest on our podcast, Venus Rising. An expert in reproductive science, author, academic and educator, Dr. Harper shares many of our concerns around IVF, assisted reproduction, all the unnecessary add-ons people are offered, and wanting women to be better informed so they can make better decisions. She even has a book, titled Your Fertile Years, What You Need to Know to Make Informed Choices.
The Tech Editorial Board surprised us with this headline: “Elitist and racist egg donation ads have no place in student newspapers.” They went on to call out the egg poachers for not disclosing medical risks of the egg donation process while waving monetary compensation to otherwise unsuspecting female students who may think, ‘what a great way to help someone and make some money!’ They announced that they won’t run ads that don’t include a disclaimer about risks, or ads that prefer certain traits (smart, ethnicity), and they urged other student newspapers to adopt a similar policy. While they didn’t go as far as I would have like them to go, I’ll take it!
The brave parents of female swimmers at the University of Pennsylvania are not sitting back and allowing “Lia Thomas” to take the trophy away from female athletes. The parents say that other female swimmers are afraid to speak up for fear of being ostracized. Lia, aka, Will Thomas, competed for three years on the men’s swim team before deciding he was ‘transgender’. #NoThankYou
Canadian fertility doctor, Norman Barwin, was sued for using either his own sperm or the wrong sperm in the creation of 100 children. Ontario Superior Court certified the class-action suit which included a settlement of $13.375 million. The settlement states that this is not an admission of any wrongdoing on the part of Barwin, who has lost his medical license. Each claimant can receive up to $50,000 based on the “category of harm”, although I can’t imagine that the financial compensation will do away with the real harms done to parents and their children born.
“Trans” women, meaning biological males, now want uterine transplants so that they can experience pregnancy and child birth in their make-believe world that they are truly women. A survey of 182 men who identify as women, showed that more than 90% wanted this experimental treatment. No longer happy to take the spot of women athletes, or being housed in women’s prisons, they want the medical profession to treat them not according to their biology but according to their feelings.
The Ukrainian BioTexCom Center for Human Reproduction, advertised their Black Friday sale to “make your dream baby come true”, offering 3% off their various fertility packages. Assisted Reproduction is expensive. One IVF cycle alone can cost tens of thousands of dollars and this price goes even hire if you need to buy eggs and or rent wombs. Or all the other add-ons couples are offered when designing a baby in the laboratory. This Black Friday sale is even more scandalous knowing all the surrogate babies that have been stranded in their country due to travel bans and lockdowns.
Kristina (24) and Galip (57) Ozturk live in Batumi, Georgia with their 21 babies all born of surrogacy. The babies were all born between March of 2020 and July of 2021. They also live with one child Kristina had from a previous relationship and one of Galip’s nine children from a previous relationship. They have 16 live-in nannies to help them care for the children. Kristina has over 205,000 followers on her Instagram page, where she posts pictures of her with her children, their nannies, and her millionaire husband. She assures her followers that she has plenty of time to spend with her children. I don’t think the children will be alright.
Serial sperm donors disgust me to no end, and Jewish donor, Ari Nagel is a big loser for inseminating women to produce nearly 100 children. He’s been called the “Sperminator” by the New York Post and has countless women calling upon him for his free services. His sperm has been collected in public bathrooms in Target and Starbucks, Art Museums, and hotel rooms. Again, another case of the children will not be alright with this.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is a big loser for issuing new guidelines that pertain to transgender athletes which they claim are “grounded in the respect for internationally respected human rights.” These new guidelines replace the 2015 guidelines that previously required ‘gender’ surgery. Any threat to biological reality is a threat to our shared human future.
- Jennifer Lahl is founder and president of The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network. Lahl couples her 25 years of experience as a pediatric critical care nurse, a hospital administrator, and a senior-level nursing manager with a deep passion to speak for those who have no voice. Lahl’s writings have appeared in various publications including Cambridge University Press, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Dallas Morning News, and the American Journal of Bioethics. As a field expert, she is routinely interviewed on radio and television including ABC, CBS, PBS, and NPR. She is also called upon to speak alongside lawmakers and members of the scientific community, even being invited to speak to members of the European Parliament in Brussels to address issues of egg trafficking; she has three times addressed the United Nations during the Commission on the Status of Women on egg and womb trafficking.