Let Chicks Charge for Eggs


Virginia Postrel points out that the National Academies' new guidelines for stem cell research include a ban on paying women for their eggs. So egg donors should be volunteers? Well, I'd like to meet the woman who will let a pack of doctors stick suctioning needles into her ovaries for the sake of science rather than, say, $15,000.

Feminists and pro-lifers get worked up over the egg donor issue, but it's working out for thousands of cash-strapped Ivy-leaguers and the older, financially stable couples eager for their DNA. Egg "donation" happens all the time, and despite the misnomer, it's not a humanitarian or idealistic endeavor (and shouldn't be sold that way). It's a transaction based on a woman's willingness to undergo significant discomfort (and some risk) for a wad of cash. Take away the cash, and I'm guessing the eggs will be gone, too.

Wired weighs in here.