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With reference to relevant ethical theories, explain the arguments used to support developments in reproductive technology.

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Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐With reference to relevant ethical theories, explain the arguments used to support developments in reproductive technology. [35] Reproductive technologies such as in vitro fertilisation, pre-implantation genetic diagnosis and intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection have undoubtedly brought much joy to many people, and therefore many ethical systems support its development. A good place to start when considering the benefits of these technologies is the utilitarian view. Utilitarians believe that man has a natural desire to reproduce based in human biology. Patrick Steptoe is quoted as stating that "It is a fact that there is a biological desire to reproduce". Likewise, Peter Singer, famous utilitarian writer, in his defence of IVF refers to the desire for a child as being a very basic desire. If there is such a desire then there does seem to be a strong argument in favour of developing techniques to overcome infertility. Such an argument might be based on the utilitarian principle of `maximising happiness'. ...read more.

Middle

To quote Laura Bush, ?For those who deeply want children and are denied them, those missing babies hover like silent ephemeral shadows over their lives.? Moving on to situation ethics, this theory is in favour of reproductive technology if it is the most loving course of action in the particular situation. It is not absolutist. This theory says that individual situations are different. This theory believes that there is only one underlying principle: you do whatever is the most loving thing to do in a situation. Ethical rules are secondary. In the circumstances of an infertile couple you take the line of action which will be the most loving thing for a couple in their unique circumstances. There are many circumstances in which the use of reproductive technology would be the most loving course of action, such as when a same sex couple wish to experience parenthood. Techniques such as IVF using donor sperm/eggs can bring the joy of a child when they cannot conceive one naturally. ...read more.

Conclusion

Thus, for example, IVF treatment allows us to pursue the natural end of reproduction through technological processes. After all, the Bible never directly mentions reproductive technologies. Nonetheless, this is still a minority view amongst proponents of natural law. Protestant churches tend to take a more lenient view. For example, the Free Presbyterian Church accepts IVF provided that the couple are married, spare embryos are not created and no donors are used. Both the Methodist Church and the Church of England are quite positive about all forms of IVF and even permit research on spare embryos up to 14 days old because it can be of great help to doctors researching genetic diseases, although embryos should not be created solely for this purpose. Ultimately, reproductive technology causes us to rethink our views on family, marriage, sex and what makes a mother. Regardless of our views, we should be compassionate towards those suffering from the effects of infertility. You cannot understand their situation unless you have experienced it personally. ...read more.

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