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OPINION | Surrogacy Can Make Pregnancy a 'Dirty Task' for Low-Income Women, WSJ Opinion Piece Says

OPINION | Surrogacy Can Make Pregnancy a 'Dirty Task' for Low-Income Women, WSJ Opinion Piece Says
[Dec. 10, 2008]

Surrogacy likely will "make pregnancy into just another dirty task" for low-income women if it "becomes a widely practiced market transaction," columnist Thomas Frank writes in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece. Frank's column is in response to a recent New York Times Magazine article that examined the experiences of the author, a writer for the New York Times who had a child through surrogacy.

Frank writes that some people believe that surrogacy "comes close to organ-selling, or even baby-selling" because "money is exchanged for pregnancy." He adds that surrogacy "threatens to commodify not only babies, but women as well" by "putting their biological functions up for sale." Surrogacy is a "class-and-gender minefield," Frank writes, adding that wealthy couples could begin "hiring the work out because it's such a hassle to be pregnant."

According to Frank, the Times Magazine article examines class issues associated with surrogacy but "inevitably brush[es] them off." Frank adds that the author does not understand that "reproduction-for-hire [is] a product of [a] billionaire-centric world" and that surrogacy is available to wealthy people and "not to others because that's how our system works" (Frank, Wall Street Journal, 12/10).