Do you think that parents should be able to choose the sex of their children?
I've been listening to bits of the discussion about this following the confirmation from the HFEA that parents will only be able to perform gender selection for medical reasons (e.g. avoiding heamophilia), not personal, social or "so-called family balancing reasons" but I'm afraid I'm finding that this is one of those questions where I'm not entirely sure what to think. On the one hand, I've heard very few good arguments against gender selection. Many people seem to have a gut reaction against it, but I don't understand why. This encourages me to align it in my mind with the many other scientific debates where the public have ill-informed objections. On the other hand, I'm not sure I can see good reasons for allowing it either. I don't think, for example, that it should be available on the NHS for non medical reasons.
The one reasonable person I heard speaking against it argued essentially that gender selection gives you an illusion of control which, if it doesn't work out could be damaging for you and the child. So for example you chose to have a girl because you have a certain perception of the way girls are. If your child turns out still not to be like that (perhaps she's a tomboy, for example) then your disappointment will affect you as a parent and the development of your child. This makes sense to me, but is it a strong enough arguement to restrict choice? After all, there are plently of avenues available for the parent/child relationship to mess up. If you're fixated on having a girl and you have a boy, won't your feelings of dissappointment in that case have a similar effect?
So what do you think? And more importantly, why do you think it?