On OAN, Heritage Foundation guest touts Alabama ruling against IVF: “An unqualified win”

OAN host on decision: “It's bringing back ethics and humanity, I think, to this conversation surrounding IVF”

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Citation From the February 21, 2024, edition of OAN's Tipping Point with Kara McKinney

KARA MCKINNEY (HOST): Since we are talking about the youth and children and young people and what we're doing to them, of course, it all begins with conception, right? This is something you and I have talked about at great lengths, IVF and all things related to surrogacy. Well, now in Alabama, a big new ruling came out from their Supreme Court seeing that frozen embryos now can be ruled as children when it comes to court cases, specifically under the state's Wrongful Death of a Minor Act.

And this all comes down to the year 2020. A patient was at a IVF center, and they were trying to receive some vials of embryos that were frozen and in the process, they accidentally killed a few embryos of several couples. Those couples then tried to sue them. The judge at the time said no standing because these are not actually children. The Supreme Court comes in and says, actually, these can be seen as children under the law. What are your thoughts on these updates?

EMMA WATERS (HERITAGE FOUNDATION): Yeah, this is an unqualified win for those who believe that the personhood of embryonic children, not a financially driven fertility industry should be the primary concern in in-vitro fertilization.

This ruling, as you mentioned, is a natural extension of Alabama's Wrongful Death of a Minor Act and simply takes their ruling on the sanctity of human life and applies that to unborn human life and even human life that was created through in-vitro fertilization. And so as the case details, this is not the addition of a new kind of thinking in Alabama state law. It's an extension of the laws that they already had in place. It does not actually limit access to in-vitro fertilization itself, but it does say that if we are to practice the creation of human life outside of the womb, then we should apply the best possible standards of care that place the well-being of the child front and center to that.

So, there's been a lot of people who have claimed that this now going to take away IVF. One clinic has actually suspended in-vitro fertilization treatments for the time being until they understand the implications of this ruling, and all this tells you is that the fertility clinics who claim to be there in order to help you achieve your goal of having a child have not been applying the best possible standard of care.

It means that they're concerned that something in their treatment, either through the willful destruction of embryonic human life, which we know is rife throughout the whole IVF industry, or perhaps just through negligence of not properly securing the area, not storing embryos in the best condition, not ensuring that they're being implanted at the best possible time, they can now actually be held accountable to this. 

And before people say that this seems bizarre and out of line, these are the exact same standards that are applied to every aspect of the medical industry because ultimately the most important person here is not the fertility clinic, it's not the financial incentive that they have to create as many embryos as possible with little concern for how those embryos are treated, but it is the well-being of the child itself.

And of course, keeping in mind the parents here, who in the original ruling they suffered the unimaginable loss of the death of those embryos that they hoped would one day be their children. So I think, really, just keeping in mind that this is a case that is responding to this deeply painful loss and is doing the best it can to provide those protections for children.

MCKINNEY: You know it's bringing back ethics and humanity, I think, to this conversation surrounding IVF.