Bryan Caplan  

Baby-Selling: When Is Wrong to Sell? When Is It Right to Ban?

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When I praised the growing division of maternal labor, the supposed reductio ad absurdum of baby selling came up.  My reply:
I see nothing wrong with selling your baby - born or unborn - to loving parents.
Until recently, though, I didn't notice this follow-up question from former GMU prof Jennifer Roback Morse:
You say, "I see nothing wrong with selling your baby - born or unborn - to loving parents."  I don't understand your reason for the qualifier. If it is ok to sell your baby to loving parents, is it ok to sell your baby to merely "liking" parents, as opposed to loving parents? Is it ok to sell your baby to someone who doesn't want to parent the child, but who plans to use the child for some purpose, such as labor, or spare body parts for another child, or for sexual services?

I know why I would prohibit these transactions. I just want to hear your rationale.
Like almost everyone, I favor the prohibition of child abuse by both relatives and non-relatives, and consider someone who knowingly sells a baby to someone expected to abuse him to be an accomplice to his abuse. 

What about Morse's less frightening hypotheticals?  Is is morally wrong to sell your baby to parents who merely "like" him, or who desire a household servant?  If so, should these transactions be prohibited?  Let's start with moral wrongness:

1. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be better-off - for example because you're on the edge of starvation - then selling your baby is a tragic but morally admirable sacrifice. 

2. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you desperately need the money (for example to feed your other kids), it might not be admirable to sell your baby, but it's understandable and morally acceptable.

3. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you don't desperately need the money, then it's probably morally wrong.  If I knew someone in these circumstances, I would try to convince them to keep their baby.  However, it's easy to come up with hypotheticals that leave me less than certain.  Suppose a woman who doesn't like kids deliberately gets pregnant purely in order to sell the babies to farmers who need extra help.   The babies have moderately unhappy childhoods, but as a whole their lives are worth living.  If the mom said, "I'm doing a lot more good for my kids than if I were childless.  If voluntary childlessness isn't morally wrong, why is my approach?," I'd have to admit that she's got a point.

Now what about prohibition?  Moral wrongness is a necessary but not sufficient condition for prohibition, so we shouldn't ban #1 or #2.  Furthermore, the merely probable wrongness of #3 does not seem strong enough to overcome the presumption of liberty.

So that's my response to Roback's questions.  I understand why she asks, but I've got to say that her hypotheticals are ultimately red herrings.  In reality:

1. People who adopt babies almost always love them, whether or not they pay for them.   Banning baby-selling to prevent mistreatment of children is like banning driving to prevent drunk driving.

2. In a free market, most of the baby suppliers would be poor families in the Third World, and most of the baby demanders would be much richer families in the First World.  The exchanges would drastically raise babies' well-being and chances of survival.

3. Baby-selling is a solution to abuse, not a cause.  Most of the horror scenarios that Morse poses - like child prostitution - are far more likely to involve kids raised by their biological families in the Third World.

4. The same goes for child labor.


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TrackBack URL: http://econlog.econlib.org/mt/mt-tb.cgi/2842
The author at Bad Attitudes in a related article titled Commodity Babies writes:
    In much of the world, selling babies is common and accepted. To us it seems a horror. Is it? Don’t argue with me; argue with Bryan Caplan. (h/t to Ezra Klein.) …People who adopt babies almost always love them, whether or not they pay for them. Banning ... [Tracked on January 4, 2010 12:34 PM]
COMMENTS (34 to date)
OneEyedMan writes:

These arguments would seem to serve as well as arguments against abortion as child sales.

sconzey writes:

Hit the nail on the button with #3 and #4. Absolutely right.

mike kenny writes:

there's the whole idea that i've heard posner put forth that you're selling parenting rights rather than the baby--if you frame is that way it might sound better to others.

if you assume that a parent must serve the child's best interests in his stead, since he's not able to make decisions for himself, then you might say that a parent who merely likes his 'bought' child should act as if he loves the child, as a part of serving the child's best interests, and if he doesn't want to do this then he doesn't have to buy the baby, so to speak.

of course that opens a can of worms--if parents who don't act as if they love their kids (and what acts might those be?) then should their parenting rights go to the highest bidder? very odd thought!

Danny Shahar writes:

Cool article. I'd suspect that when people typically object to selling babies, they're not objecting to the act of the sale or its direct consequences so much as they're unhappy about someone being the kind of person who would want to make the sale in the first place. I imagine that for many people, it just seems like they’re something wrong with a parent who would go through with selling one of their own children. If that's true, then perhaps it won't do to try to find what it is about the sale itself that is wrong -- as I think you showed, it is unclear why under normal circumstances, there would be anything demonstrably wrong with the sale itself. Rather, the relevant question would be: What kind of person would sell a baby?

But once we make this move into a more virtue-ethical mindset, I think things get a lot trickier with respect to thinking about laws. People seem to have a knee-jerk intuition that we should prohibit actions which we take to demonstrate poor character, and I would not be surprised if those prohibitions worked as effective mechanisms for reforming people’s dispositions. This would potentially help to explain why our moral psychology generates these perhaps authoritarian intuitions in the first place -- in an evolutionary context, individual liberty was all but irrelevant, whereas the need to regulate the dispositions (and, thereby, to influence the actions) of others in one’s social group was paramount. But once we begin to affirm a presumption of liberty, and we begin to think that people have something like a right to be bad people as long as they keep their hands to themselves, it seems reasonably predictable that our moral intuitions would begin to generate uncomfortable results.

I would suspect, then, that the standard reaction by an opponent of baby-sales to this article would be to search with frustration for other reasons that selling babies is wrong and, upon finding none which hold water, to nevertheless insist that it’s just clearly wrong, that no decent person would do it, and anyone who does it should be stopped. And I would further suspect that when reminded of their affirmation of the presumption of liberty, they would become vaguely distressed, having something like the intuition that the presumption of liberty is not supposed to be used to protect things like selling babies which people so clearly should not do. That would make sense given the kinds of animals that people are, but I'm not sure what we can really do with something like that.

Hopefully that’s helpful somehow!

Your calculus overlooks 3 important questions:

1. is a person the kind of thing that can and/or should be sold?
2. is an infant a person?
3. What, if anything, is owed to the infant/child?

Bryan's observation in Number 1 above, that people who adopt babies almost always love them, is beside the point. Adoptive parents perceive themselves as parents, not as purchasers of anything. Change that perception by endorsing "baby-selling" and you would almost certainly change the pool, both the number and type, of people participating in the market.
Regarding #3: I was told some years ago that Thailand is pretty much open season for child sexual predators. Evidently, one can in fact purchase an infant for sexual purposes in Thailand. I presume you would all prohibit those transactions, even if some of those babies wouldn't have been born absent their mothers' expectation of the cash available from selling them. Or would you?

Gary Rogers writes:

If you believe the child will be worse off and do not desperately need the money yet you are willing to sell your baby? Isn't this the sale that we all hope does take place? Doesn't this indicate that the child will, in fact, be better off with an adopting family? The other two scenareos describe temporary situations that may soon change. The more parents try to do what is best for the child, the more those parents look to be the better choice.

Gary, you say,
"If you believe the child will be worse off and do not desperately need the money yet you are willing to sell your baby?"

So what do you mean by this phrase, "your baby?"
What makes the baby your object to sell?
How does this differ from an adoption without "selling?"
BTW, the referents in your comment are not clear.
"worse off" compared to what?
which "other two scenarios" are you talking about?
I'm afraid this comment hasn't added clarity.

Josh W. writes:

Jennifer,

You ask 3 questions. I'm going to give them a shot.

1. is a person the kind of thing that can and/or should be sold?

You're selling the parental rights to take care of said person. Adoption is the transfer of parental rights. The same thing applies if you let mothers be compensated by the new parents.

2. is an infant a person?

Yes, of course. I'm not sure what you have in mind here.

3. What, if anything, is owed to the infant/child?

The care that will allow them to one day be an independent person. The protection from abuse and danger because they can't protect themselves. Am I forgetting anything? Surely those two sentences aren't comprehensive.

- Josh

Philo writes:

Posner's point is valid: "selling a baby" is really selling a traditional bundle of *parenting rights*. Parents don't *own* the baby; therefore they cannot literally "sell" it.

They certainly can transfer their parenting rights in a number of ways; why, then, should they not be allowed to *sell* them? These rights consist in certain powers of control; but their obtaining is *conditional* upon the parents' discharge of certain duties toward the child. It would be an exaggeration to say that parents have a duty always to act in the child's best interest, but there is some lower standard along these lines that parents must meet on pain of losing their control-rights. Actually, what parents must do to retain control of the child is give evidence that they will meet this standard in the future (so long as the child remains a child). Thus, parents who are guilty of an incident of mild child abuse may retain their parenting rights if they have a record of meeting the standard over an extended period. But for parents without such a record--perhaps because they are newly parents--such an incident may suffice to deprive them of their control-rights.

The law must work in the interests of children, recognizing their lesser ability to defend themselves. But that observation falls a long way short of giving us a detailed legal code for dealing with children; we need a lot of empirical information of a sociological sort. Bryan's claim, "People who adopt babies almost always love them, whether or not they pay for them," is certainly relevant. So is Jennifer's rebuttal: "Adoptive parents perceive themselves as parents, not as purchasers of anything. Change that perception by endorsing 'baby-selling' and you would almost certainly change the pool, both the number and type, of people participating in the market." She is suggesting (though not stating) that buyers of parenting rights would be (much?) more likely to abuse the children than would those who acquire parenting rights by other means than purchase. I think she is probably wrong (at least, that the greater likelihood of abuse is small enough not to undermine Bryan's proposal), but I lack data to support my impression.

Gary Rogers writes:

Sorry about the clarity of my earlier comment. Here is the section of the original post that struck me as incorrect.

1. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be better-off - for example because you're on the edge of starvation - then selling your baby is a tragic but morally admirable sacrifice.


2. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you desperately need the money (for example to feed your other kids), it might not be admirable to sell your baby, but it's understandable and morally acceptable.


3. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you don't desperately need the money, then it's probably morally wrong. If I knew someone in these circumstances, I would try to convince them to keep their baby.

I would reverse the morality judgement for these three situations. If I were goinng to talk someone out of this transaction it would be the first scenerio. If I were going to encourage one of these transactions to take place, it would be the third. This is similar to the logic King Solomon used when he threatened to cut the baby in half and give half to each woman claiming to be the mother.

On the whole, though, I agree with Bryan as I almost always do.

GabbyD writes:

what if (poor) parents produce babies with the sole purpose of selling them. is that a good thing?

Josh W. writes:

Once again we get to talk babies Gabby. It's a good thing unless they sell the parental rights to an abusive parent.

Who is it not good for?

Philo writes:

Marx thought that producing any goods for sale in the market was dehumanizing, "alienating." Why do most people disagree with him in general, but agree with respect to sexual services, body parts, and parental rights?

Philo writes:

Compare pets (which really *are* owned). You can acquire a pet as a stray, or from an animal shelter, or as a gift from an acquaintance, or by breeding a pet you already own; or you can buy one. Does this make a difference in your attitude toward the pet?

Douglass Holmes writes:

Well, I just commented on Bryan's earlier post, and I will also say here that ant-market bias influences people strongly in this area. Note how Bryan started this by saying that he favors the sale of babies to 'loving' parents. I would not have added that qualifier, because right now thousands of babies are being born to people who are not loving and are not interested in or even cognizant of the effort required to raise the children lovingly. Right now, we don't prohibit these people from keeping 'their' children.
So, I believe that thousands of children (perhaps millions) would be better off if their mothers had an economic incentive to put them up for adoption.

GabbyD writes:

@philo

so mothers are pregnant pets? they really are just walking baby factories?

Loof writes:

Jennifers reference to Thailand being “open season for child sexual predators” is outdated. The government has been active in curtailing predation, they now find the black market in Cambodia to be better. In Thailand, however, the business of breeding females and selling children is still problematic.

About 5 years ago I was in a remote village in northern Laos. The headmen got some girls to “sell their bodies” in town, send the money back to them so they could upgrade the road to the outside world. Part of the money was used to secure property for the girls to own a house in the village when they returned. But, heh, if selling babies was legal the village headmen could set up a company, the girls could stay at home, each be breed for a baby, and sell it for a profit.

Good plan, eh—except people are not objects to be bought and sold in society. The property in person problem was basic to Solon’s reforms and a slippery slope into legalized slavery as Aristotle demonstrated. The question rests on person rights; not any form of property rights: the bundle of rights argument is without standing relative to human rights in natural and positive law. Philosophically Kant’s Practical Imperative is operative: Treat every person as end in themselves, not as a means to an end.

a writes:

[Comment removed for supplying false email address. Email the webmaster@econlib.org to request restoring this comment. A valid email address is required to post comments on EconLog.--Econlib Ed.]

I.S writes:

Why stop with infants? Surely this could be applied to the trading of all ages of human.

1. People who own humans almost always take care of them, whether or not they pay for them or forcefully appropriate them from their homeland. Banning human-selling to prevent mistreatment of humans is like banning driving to prevent drunk driving.

2. In a free market, most of the humans would be poor from the Third World, and most of the human demanders would be much richer businessmen in the First World. The exchanges would drastically raise humans' well-being and chances of survival.

3. Human-selling is a solution to abuse, not a cause. A human-owner is far more likely to take care of a human that is their property than they would a mere wage worker.

I'm sure there's a word for this but I can't remember it right now. Anyways, sign me up! Where do I buy me a human life? These plantations won't grow themselves!

SqueakyRat writes:

If you can sell your baby, why not your teenager?

d writes:

1. People who adopt babies almost always love them, whether or not they pay for them....

Adoption and baby-purchasing are different things, surely? After all, a few sentences later you talk about child-prostitution, which is traditionally done by poor parents selling their child to a brothel, and is probably the most common form of baby-selling in today's world.

What's wrong with baby-selling? It's a step onto a slippery slope at the bottom of which is peonage and slavery. The commenter who brought up abortion is in the right neighborhood, in the sense that the abortion debate is ostensibly also about that step onto a similar slippery slope.

Seth writes:

Leaving aside the abstract moral debate surrounding the sale itself, legalizing baby selling would lead to devastating consequences. Obviously, if we permitted international trafficking in babies, there would be an enormous incentive for poor third world women to have babies in order to sell them. However, given market inefficiencies, there would be no guarantee that babies conceived in order to be sold to loving parents would, in fact, be sold to loving parents. Since third world mothers could potentially get a windfall from a sale, then even if their chances of successfully selling their baby was only one in five, it still might be rational for them to conceive of a baby in order to try to sell it. However, this would lead to four out of five unwanted babies being born in third world conditions. One can only imagine the parade of horribles that this would lead to, but surely it would be a human rights disaster.

Chana writes:

I'd say that the reason people are disturbed by this scenario (despite their possible anti-Marxism) is that we have sort of an odd way of thinking in the US-we believe on some level that the trade and commodification of almost anything is fair game, except for whatever takes place within the protected spheres of family and religion. These appear to be pretty much the only protected spheres, and they're protected pretty aggressively. So while artists, for example, are often viewed as economic deadweight, on the argument that they're not producing anything which the market values, parents are not viewed that way-and in fact, even my most hard core market oriented students assume that they'll one day have children. Despite the fact that children are a-not currently a salable product, and b-that they actually are economically illogical for most people. I'd say there's a kind of cognitive disconnect there.

I do think that legally selling the CHILD as such is a problem, both because it does start a certain slippery slope re: slavery and because it creates a problematic situation for the child as he/she gets older (i.e., if the child itself is what belongs to the adoptive parent, how are that child's rights to leave configured? Can the parent place legal restrictions on, for instance, who and how the kid can marry, or where he/she can live?) The distinction between the child as a human being and the transfer of parenting rights would have to be made pretty clear.

Loof writes:

For a masterly satire down that slippery slope of baby-selling, read Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal (1729): “For preventing the children of poor people in Ireland from being aburden to their parents or country, and for making them beneficial to the public.” That poor parents should sell their children as food is the bottom and would be hell on earth, I believe; though I'm not religiously a true believer.

Alex writes:

Parents can't sell their babies, because they don't own their babies. Where is the contract?

Essentially, this is just the slave trade without the plantations. I thought libertarians believed that bodily autonomy shouldn't be violated? Yet another example of how libertarians in reality only care about freedom and liberty so long as it's the freedom and liberty of the free market.

Desiree writes:

Children--at whatever stage of development--are human beings who have basic human rights. The measure of rights a society affords children is a good measure of the civility and moral development of a culture.

One can argue anything. The wisdom of arguing some things is debatable. It is like crapping on the floor in your own house (convenient at the moment) and then having to live with the long term results. Tearing down the time honored morals of your own culture because some people "want what they want when they want it" (i.e. a child to parent) without regard to the fact that children are human beings is unwise. Children are simply adults-to-be. They come into the world with a genetic and ancestral heritage from two parents. This belongs to them. And they have rights to retain it.

Children are people with their own enumerated rights.

Take a look at the Human Rights documents called the UN's Convention on the Rights of the Child:

http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/crc.htm

And the accompanying:

http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/crc-sale.htm

All countries of the world EXCEPT the US and Somalia have ratified the UN CRC.

Look particularly at the hierarchy of care for the child--he has the right to his own family relations--and the child's right to his own identity. There is subsidiarity principle at play here.

Children are NOT chattel or commodities anymore than are persons of color or women or particular ethnic groups.

Desiree

Drew writes:

I think Philo's comment is useful: as we conceive parenting, it is less the right of a parent to dispose of a child as they see fit and more the obligation of the parent to care for the child. Children used to be equity; now they're liabilities.

That doesn't answer whether it is immoral to buy and sell them, but I think it clarifies the nature of what is being bought or sold - debt - and may illuminate the motives of the buyer and the seller. At least in an "ideal" scenario.

But I don't think this is the quite the scenario we have offered to us:

Is is morally wrong to sell your baby to parents . . . who desire a household servant? . . . Suppose a woman who doesn't like kids deliberately gets pregnant purely in order to sell the babies to farmers who need extra help.

Contra Alex, this example isn't "the slave trade without the plantations." The example includes a plantation.

Really, even if you say that you haven't sold the child, merely the right to parent, if the right to parent includes the right to force a child to do labor, how is that not slavery? Because the slave is a child? Really?

It's not difficult to see where this would lead. If you legalize slavery under the notion that it isn't slavery if the slave is under the age of 18 and the owner is the "parent," the market that would develop would push to raise the age at which a child would become an adult and lower the standard for the "parent." Eventually, you have the the situation of the pre-war south, where slaveowners justified slavery by asserting that slaves were mental children who required their care; and where abuse was forbidden, if by "abuse" you mean slaughter and by "forbidden" you mean subject to a fine.

toby writes:

Isn't this a classic utilitarian vs Kantian argument?

The utilitarian says the objective is "the greatest happiness for the greatest number" so that if the child is guaranteed a minimum value of life, then selling is ok, as the benefits go to other children. I presume we draw the line at selling a child to get a fix, or even to gain a fortune on the stock market.

The Kantian would have an absolute prohibition on selling children, because it is treating them as objects, not as ends in themselves. That is an absolute condition in the ethics of Kant, itself a sort of generalisation of Christianity's Golden Rule - do unto others etc.

Personally, though in general I am sympathetic to utilitarianism, in certain cases I would cleave to Kant, and this is one of them. Parents do not bring children into the world to sell them like beasts - you choose to have them & that that means planning to look after them without sale.

I recognise practical situations and customs in some parts of the work make this difficult, but "twenty million Thais cannot be wrong" is not a recognisable ethical argument.

San Antonio Employment Lawyers writes:

I'll give you points for stone facing such an unpopular argument, however with any pragmatism, there is no possible way that the practice of selling infants, or small children for that matter isn't morally reprehensible. If one infant or child is sold into conditions that in any way, physically, emotionally, or otherwise the whole system is bunk.

Kinsale writes:

Nauseating materialism...What's next, a derivatives market in souls I suppose?

Jennifer Roback Morse writes:

a couple of comments on this thread.
1. Some posters seem to think that allowing explicit payment for an adoption would leave the adoption institution intact. But this is not appropriate to assume that "adoption" would continue to be the same kind of institution. Currently, and for a long time in the Christian West, adoption has been considered a child-centered institution. It is a solution to the problem of a child without suitable biological parents or other relatives. Any benefits to the adoptive parents are strictly incidental. This is what makes it different from market transactions, where the focus is on a calculation of costs and benefits from both parties, who are assumed to be able to fend for themselves.
Allowing explicit payment does more than change existing incentives, i.e. something that used to cost $5 now costs $6. Allowing explicit payment for infants changes the very structure of incentives: transactions that are now literally unthinkable will become subject to cost benefit calculation. This fact will change the structure of a whole variety of incentives. Many of the people who are objecting to paying for infants are making this point in one way or another.
2. Some of the comments in some form or fashion, echo Bryan's original observation that people who adopt babies almost always love them. Implicit too, is the idea that mothers almost always love their babies too much to sell them into terrible circumstances without good reason.
You are in effect counting on an unnamed, undefined and unanalyzed factor, namely, the maternal instinct, to prevent the worst abuses from occuring.
I find it mildly amusing that you tough-guy economists are relying on mothers to keep you out of trouble. BTW, do fathers have any rights at all in these transactions? I realize that is slightly off this thread, but that is revealing in and of itself. The baby-making process has become an individual activity, rather than what it is in fact: the ultimate in team production.
3. I also find it mildly amusing that a point of view that starts out with a presumption of liberty can't come up with a principled reason for prohibiting the buying and selling of the weakest and most vulnerable of human beings.

Philo writes:

@Jennifer

"Allowing explicit payment for infants changes the very structure of incentives: transactions that are now literally unthinkable will become subject to cost benefit calculation." Incentives would be changed, but how would "the very structure of incentives" be affected? What do you mean by 'structure of incentives', anyway? Your concern about incentives--reminiscent of Titmuss's "Gift Relationship"--strikes me as overblown (that's just my impression). By the way, the transactions aren't unthinkable--we're thinking and talking about them right now; they're just illegal.

Regarding your last point: it should have been obvious all along that babies and young children (as well as demented or otherwise incompetent people) would be a sore point for libertarianism, which is conceived with only competent adults in mind.

FreeLuna writes:

Reply to each of your points:

"1. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be better-off - for example because you're on the edge of starvation - then selling your baby is a tragic but morally admirable sacrifice. "


-if you reasonably expect that your baby will be better off, why do you need to be PAID to transfer your child to adoptive parents? shouldn't your parental responsibility MANDATE that you transfer the child, possibly even PAYING for the child's better life?

it would seem that in this scenario, the payment would only be neccessary to entice you to act AGAINST your own ethics.


"2. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you desperately need the money (for example to feed your other kids), it might not be admirable to sell your baby, but it's understandable and morally acceptable."

-this would mean that a parent has the authority to sacrifice a innocent child to better provide for the remainder. DEMOCRATIC GOVERNMENTS don't have that right when dealing with their citizens, why should parents when dealing with their children?

and if the justification is to better provide for as many children as possible, would the parent not do better to give ALL their children to a BETTER life, rather then sacrificing one so the rest can have a slightly-less-worse life?


"3. If you reasonably expect that your baby will be worse off, but still have a life worth living, and you don't desperately need the money, then it's probably morally wrong. If I knew someone in these circumstances, I would try to convince them to keep their baby. However, it's easy to come up with hypotheticals that leave me less than certain. Suppose a woman who doesn't like kids deliberately gets pregnant purely in order to sell the babies to farmers who need extra help. The babies have moderately unhappy childhoods, but as a whole their lives are worth living. If the mom said, "I'm doing a lot more good for my kids than if I were childless. If voluntary childlessness isn't morally wrong, why is my approach?," I'd have to admit that she's got a point."

-if creating intelligent life to be sold for a profit is not ethically wrong, what about BUYING said life?

What, exactly, is the farmer purchasing? if he's purchasing labor, he's in violation of child labor laws, slavery laws, and possibly indentured servitude laws: You cannot legally sell the right to demand uncompensated work from an individual.

If the farmer is purchasing the DUTY to care for a child, then the mother should be paying the FARMER, not the other way around.

If he's purchasing the right to be a parent of a specific individual, that raises the question of how the MOTHER came into possession of such a right, and what the inherent terms of that right is.

If the Mother has the right to possess power over her child, and if that right is a BENEFIT to the mother, which is has to be in order for anyone to be interested in buying it...

Then there has to be a MUTUAL benefit in the mother-child contract. how does the child benefit from the existence of the mother's rights?

The child isn't legally able to consent to a change in contract terms yet, and certainly couldn't have negotiated a right-to-resell clause to the contract prior to being born.

Normally, any such legal negotations on behalf of the child would be undertaken by the child's legal guardian, but that's MOM, and for her to represent the potentially disparate interests of both herself AND her child would be unethical. Especially when she stands to profit from placing here interests above her ward's.

Loof writes:

So, Bryan, after this fascinating discussion, that L appreciates you introducing, are you still stuck on the view: “I see nothing wrong with selling your baby – born or unborn – to loving parents”? Have you changed the absolute fixation (“see nothing”) and absolute qualification (“loving parents”) idealism to being really relative to something or everything becoming wrong with baby commoditization as well as seeing something more than just being loving parents?

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