A shift in cultural preferences is occurring in the US, aided by technology that allows prospective parents to select the gender of their child, toward a bias in favor of baby girls over baby boys. The clinic which performs the most gender selections, called Fertility Institutes, is located in Encino, California, where hopeful couples pay tens of thousands of dollars to have embryos selected according to their gender-based wishes. “Fertility doctors foresee an explosion in sex-selection procedures on the horizon, as couples become accustomed to the idea that they can pay to beget children of the gender they prefer.”
Subscribe for counterintuitive, surprising, and impactful stories delivered to your inbox every Thursday
What’s the Big Idea?
The US is one of only a few countries that still allow gender-selection procedures, which rely on a process originally intended to screen for genetic diseases (Canada, the UK and Australia have banned its use in gender selection). Medical ethicists who oppose the procedure argue that a parent’s preference for one gender or the other is necessarily based on preconceived nations of what a girl or boy should behave like, preventing them from determining their own course in life. Despite such objections, industry experts say gender selection is likely to remain legal in the US.