Idant Laboratories, reports the Post, fails to test sperm donors for some sexually transmitted and genetic diseases. One woman who used sperm from Idant Laboratories contacted the agency when she learned that her own son, and the child of another family that used the same donor, both suffered from autism.
Idant declined to contact the sperm donor on the grounds that autism is not a life-threatening illness. How many other children will this one man be paid to stud with his identity totally shielded by law -- hundreds potentially?
My own position on sperm donation is considered beyond the pale. Ideally, before a man becomes a father he ought to be able to persuade some woman to marry him. But consider this an absolute minimum: A man who wants to be a father ought to be able to find some actual live woman who wants to have sex with him. Call it nature's quality control.
If we are going to revise all our laws to facilitate adult desires at children's expenses, the least we can do is require facilities that make money by making babies to keep records on whom the biological father is, and make those records available to children who turn 18.
If New Jersey legislators are going to impose this burden on birth mothers, the least they can do in justice is to make sperm-donor dads equally responsible.
Maggie Gallagher is a nationally syndicated columnist, a leading voice in the new marriage movement and co-author of The Case for Marriage: Why Married People Are Happier, Healthier, and Better Off Financially.