>Is She Crazy for Kids?


Octuplets Doctor loses license” Orange County Register, June 2, 2011.

Should She Have Her Head Examined?

First, a disclaimer:

1. I am aware that matters of reproductive rights and reproductive medicine are complex, nuanced, controversial, and emotional.

2. I also understand that newspapers deal in brevity and uproar. Brevity provides room for advertisements and caters to a hurried readership.

Uproars sell papers.

Okay. That said, I find myself musing over this case. The January, 2009 birth of octuplets to a single mother of six children certainly raised an uproar. Earlier this month, California revoked the medical license of the doctor who conducted the in-vitro fertilization process that led to these eight babies.

Uproars do not lend themselves to productive discussions of complex, nuanced, controversial, and emotional topics. And newspapers must by their nature condense the facts reported in any given article.

Still, I’m stunned by this article’s explanation of the state’s reasoning:

“The state’s initial complaint blamed [Dr.] Kamrava for not referring [mom] Suleman to a mental-health professional after she repeatedly returned for fertility treatments after having six children.”

I bet the complaint filed against Dr. Kamrava listed other reasons for seeking to revoke his license. But the newspaper highlighted the state’s imputed supposition that the mom must be nuts.

I’ll be reflecting today. Did the article’s author think everyone would agree that one has to be crazy to want lots and lots of kids? Or did the article’s author believe the suggestion that mom is looney would feed the uproar? Or did some other assumption drive the statement?

In any case, what does this reasoning say about us? And when did we become a nation that unblushingly peers into the heart of a mother?

1 Therefore, putting aside all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander, 2 like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, 3 if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.
1 Peter 2:1-3 (NASB)


  1. >That prospect seems so unlikely. Then I remember that it's a reality today in parts of the world.

    One more thing to pray on. Thanks for stopping by, David.