Can I have a baby? And please be sure is blue eyed, blond haired and pale skin...
Yesterday, I came across an interesting interview in Portfolio.com, about a procedure done during the fertilisation in vitro named pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) and used to scan embryos for cosmetic traits. The interview was with Mark Hughes, one of the fathers of PGD process.
The procedure has been used before to scan embryos for life-threatening diseases for children. Although it has been banned in many countries for gender selection, in US is still allowed and because of these permissive laws, the science behind it, progressed in a different direction to the point to offer customised babies. Fertility Institutes, a clinic in Los Angeles, already announced this service last December, but had to suspend it due to the public outrage.
Hughes was asked what he thinks about using this procedure by parents to choose cosmetic traits for their babies. According to him, these technologies are a natural extension to the choice of having a baby or not. He also believes that when people refer to this technique as creating ‘designer babies’ is an ‘insult to parents, because it says that parents basically don’t have their kids’ best interest at hart.’
Further, Mr. Hughes defended PGD process by saying that every parent wants to give its child the best choices in life. I’m wondering if the colour of their eyes or hair will really make a difference for their future.
Screening embryos for cosmetic characteristic is just the beginning. Currently there is no stopping that in the near future we will screen for social characteristics like intelligence. We already let a deaf lesbian couple in Chicago to choose a deaf baby. What is next? Aren’t we opening a door for more testing that will enable parents with money to create a super race of children? It seems to me that Hitler’s dream is about to become reality…
Walt Disney Pictures has released the first promotional pictures of the new Tim Burton's movie Alice in Wonderland. For this, Burton casted his all time favourite actor Johnny Depp to be the Mad Hatter, Burton's wife Helena Bonhan Carter as the Red Queen and Anne Hathaway as the very pale looking White Queen.
The movie is set up to be a sequel and it starts when Alice is 17 and finds out that she will be proposed. She makes a run for it and follows the white rabbit down to Wonderland that she visited a decade ago. While the rabbit is convinced he has the right girl, Alice cannot remember Wonderland. All the animals in the kingdom are eagerly waiting for her to lead them to freedom, but will she be able to?
Other details revealed are: White Queen played by Anne Hathaway is very pale and eccentric who doesn't walk, but floats and Johnny Depp is lending his character Mad Hatter an 'indescribable' accent, according to the movie producer Richard Zanuck. All these are part of the dark feeling of the movie, which is Burton's movies signature if we think of cuddly Edward Scissorhands and the heartwarming Sweeney Todd.
Unfortunately, will have to wait for a while until the release which will happen in March 2010. Oh...sooo looking forward to it!
During a trip to New York this week, to visit an art workshop that is sponsoring children in USA and China with life treatening disabilities, Donatella Versace gave present children a life time oportunity.
Her idea was that present children should draw and their work will be fashioned on canavas bags by the italian fashion house through shops in the entire world.
All fans of graphic design will go crazy for Ann Kurris's cardigans. Soft and comfy, dipped in bright colours and surprising combinations, just beautiful!
Anne Kurris is a graphic designer with famous collaborations behind, such as Jean Paul Gautier and Dries Van Noten. In 1998, she started her children collection with a clear graphic approach. Her style is very modern and sophisticated: t-shirts with lots of prints or knitwear in bold colours. The designs are mostly a combination of romance and frivolity with almost a rough look.
The collection is positioned in the higher range and is always made of great fabrics: wool, cotton or silk.
I admit, I love to put my girl in summer dresses and I should do it a lot, before she grows up and starts assessing her own opinion of what she wants to wear. Made of pure cotton and combinig beautiful fun collours, Clayeux delivers great knitted dresses and cardigans to dress your girl for a summer day in the sun.
Get this summer treats dresses from Clayeux at Cool Junior, at very cool prices!
Our world is still pretty unfair to women, but men, as dads have their own struggle with the society stereotypes. Usually they have to chose between a label that portraits them as somebody who pays the bills and has no clue about taking care of a child or being the guy who likes children and people are wondering wheather he's pervert or wuss.
More than often we refer to parenting only in relation to mothers, but what about men who are hands on their children, buying and changing diapers, feeding their babies, evaluating schools? Aren’t they feeling left out by the society?
Peter Gray, a anthropology professor at Nevada University, finds testosterone, one of the important factors that influences the ‘daddy brain’. He’s been working with an international team, trying to analyse the neurochemistry of a man’s brain when he is dating and settle down. These studies found lower levels of testosterone in married men, while other studies found increased levels of prolactin (the hormone of lactation) and lower levels of sex steroids in men after their baby has been born. Prolactin helps new fathers to hear their baby cries, whereas lower level of testosterone makes them more sympathetic and more ready to respond to their babies.
Understanding how fatherhood process is triggered, we can have a more understanding approach of new fathers who take in their arms their new pink and screaming bundles and say ‘Eeou!’. I mean… new mothers have nine months of preparing for this motherhood role, whereas dads can start this process only once the baby has arrived.
Jay Fagan, professor of social work at Temple University believes that the best thing for future fathers to become more committed to their partner and their child after its been born is to be more involved during their partner's pregnancy and have an active role in birth preparations.
As for society and us, mummies, we should see men who become fathers, not as unmanly Mr. Mom, but as Super Dads.