Skip to main content

Wombs for hire?

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo kicks against the Catholic Church again, pushing to legalize surrogacy

Wombs for hire?

Andrew Cuomo ( Louis Lanzan/AP)

A New York moment:

After signing a bill legalizing late-term abortion in January, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is pushing another measure that evangelicals and Catholics in the state have long opposed: commercial surrogacy. New York is one of the few states that ban surrogacy. This is one issue where the United States is more socially liberal than Europe: Most countries there ban surrogacy, and the European Parliament has condemned the practice. Cuomo is proposing to legalize it through the euphemistically titled Child-Parent Security Act.

Commercial surrogacy is chiefly a priority for same-sex couples, while some bioethics and Christian groups have opposed it on the grounds that it exploits lower-income women. The Catholic Church considers surrogacy a form of human trafficking. In a typical surrogacy contract, a couple uses in vitro fertilization to create a baby and then pays a woman to carry it to term. After the surrogate mother gives birth, she gives the child to the couple.

One feature of the proposed bill is that the surrogate mother maintains all rights to decisions during the pregnancy—which would prevent situations such as the adoptive parents demanding an abortion even when a surrogate wants to keep the baby. But it also means the surrogate could abort at any point in the pregnancy.

Worth your time:

This obituary of Lenny Gilleo, the “Hairman of the Board,” who cut hair at the Federal Reserve Board. His business cards read, “My monetary policy is greatly affected by your growth rate.” His life story is fascinating too.

This week I learned:

Who Mary Lou Williams is. Wow. Happy Black History Month!

A court case you might not know about:

The founder of a Philippines-based news site called Rappler has been arrested, part of President Rodrigo Duterte’s pattern of targeting journalists. I relied on Rappler for background research in my investigation of the Iglesia ni Cristo, a Philippine group that has ties to Duterte and claims to be the only true Christian church.

Culture I am consuming:

Beautiful Boy, a film from last year that tells the true story of a young meth addict and his father’s flailing efforts to help him. It’s a story that rings so true of the helplessness I’ve seen in parents of addicts, especially those in the upper middle class who think they can quickly solve this problem just like they can solve most other problems in life.

The movie doesn’t go anywhere except to show the endless cycle of addiction. But it does acknowledge the emotional and psychological aspects of addiction that are often taboo to bring up. Speaking at a recovery meeting at one point in the film, Nic Sheff (played by Timothée Chalamet) talks about how drugs fill a “black hole” in him. Chalamet is the true highlight of the dark movie.

Email me with tips, story ideas, and feedback at


You must be a WORLD Member and be logged in to the website to comment.
  • HAMwithWry
    Posted: Thu, 02/28/2019 12:51 am

    How tragic that Governor Cuomo is pictured in front of an announcement declaring that Jesus is Lord. Jesus warns that He will reject many who hypocritically say, "Lord, Lord," while doing such evil -- condoning, even requiring, the killing of "these little ones" by those who are supposed to protect life. The governor and others of his ilk are leading many away from the kingdom of God. Will New York be redeemed from such evil? Will our nation?

  • HAMwithWry
    Posted: Thu, 02/28/2019 01:03 am

    It is the height of hypocrisy to endorse abortion up to the point of birth (and killing through neglect afterward) in one breath -- and then to advocate for the sale of babies under the name of "Child-Parent Security." Governor Cuomo is truly in the business of human trafficking, whether the babies are whole or in parts.

  • VISTA48
    Posted: Thu, 02/28/2019 10:06 am

    The Affordable Care Act drastically increased the cost of my health insurance, the Green New Deal has nothing to do with ecology, and the Child-Parent Security Act actually undermines the security of children and parents. Do I see a trend here?