Donor gamete regulation is an ongoing topic in the United States. What's so special about gametes that causes us to be concerned about their commodification? Commodification itself is not a bad thing. In free societies, supply-and-demand relationships precisely determine prices.
Should a woman be allowed to sell her ova in the same manner as she might sell other services related to her body, such as modeling or in the performing arts? Are there differences between an egg and the collection of cells and tissues that comprise her physical form?
The real issues do not relate to commodification, but rather concern protecting both buyers and sellers. We should also be worried about the interests of children, and the impact on our society of a market which explicitly places a higher price on “whiteness”, “tallness”, “Ivy League–ness”, and so on. If commodification is not an issue, why set a limit on prices?
The Alden March Bioethics Institute offers graduate online masters in bioethics programs. For more information on the AMBI master of bioethics online program, please visit the AMBI site.