The end of the road - will we ever reach it?
My weekly news wrap is back after a few weeks hiatus and the first story is one I heard this morning. New drugs offer hope of life to 150-plus

Now I don’t usually get ranty. I get opinionated, I question, I like to stretch my position on topics but today I’m going to get ranty; simply off the headline.

”I think there is real hope we can extend human life by some decades further,” Professor Smith said.

Living to 150 may sound unnerving, but it would be ”great” if you were well until near the end, he said. ”The aim is not just to eke out extra existence but to facilitate a longer healthy life.”

Now my initial reaction is people like Dick Smith come out and say families should be limited to 2 children for economic, environmental and social reasons.

Now I ask you, where is Dick Smith and others like him who bang on about curbing the birthrate because the planet already has too many people about this topic. What is your stance on extending life Mr Smith?

And while we’re on that, just for the record, the birthrate in Australia hasn’t been at replacement rate since 1980 when it slipped under 2.1 for the first time.

So Dick Smith carrying on about curbing families to 2 children really is a moot point.

Is it really the in the interest of mankind to prolong our lives through the use of drugs? We really are afraid of dying it would seem.

And just to confuse us even more Dr Barry Walters, of King Edward Memorial Hospital in Perth, said women who planned to get pregnant after that age (late 30’s) were ”selfish and self-centred”.

And journalist Shelly Horton feeling the need to justify her reasons for remaining childless.

Right, next topic.

Here’s one that refuses go to away. When Parents Select Baby’s Sex

I blogged about parenting being able to select the gender of their baby using IVF back in July 2010 Boy or Girl: It Does Matter

It would appear that not only is society divided between whether being able to select your baby’s gender but so is the Obstetric community.

This topic isn’t going to go away; and people can’t just switch off their feelings if wanting a particular gender is important to them.

The head of women’s and children’s health at the University of NSW, Professor Michael Chapman, says Australians are more concerned about achieving a desired ratio of girls to boys in their families than wanting first-born sons.

The president of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, Dr Rupert Sherwood, does not support Professor Chapman’s suggestion. ”That’s taking science and using it in a social sense,” he said.

But IVF is doing exactly that regardless of gender selection. It is using science in a social sense.

The European Union recently debated banning doctors from telling parents the sex of their unborn babies to stop sex selection abortions, which were on the rise in some former Soviet Union states.

This was another interesting point. If in Europe the sex is determined at 18 weeks, as it is in Australia, then the topic of discussion should be late term abortions and the guidelines surrounding those. Or alternatively, more credence be paid to Gender Disappointment and provide counseling where necessary. But the attitude of we’re not going to tell you so just deal when the baby comes; along with sleep deprivation and hormones seems infantile.

On the other side of the world in the United States, Protect Life Act Passes House: House Passes Controversial Anti-Abortion Bill

After an emotional floor debate, the House of Representatives on Thursday passed the so-called Protect Life Act, which prohibits women from buying health insurance plans that cover abortion under the Affordable Care Act and makes it legal for hospitals to deny abortions to pregnant women with life-threatening conditions.

Despite a strong showing in the House, the bill is unlikely to pass in the Democrat-controlled Senate, and the White House said on Wednesday that President Barack Obama will veto the legislation if it ever reaches his desk.

So what have I learned these last couple of weeks?

Have children, but only 2, more than 2 is irresponsible, and none is selfish. Leaving it too late is selfish and if you’re in the US you just might have to have a baby before you’re ready.

Don’t desire one gender over another but you are welcome to live until you’re 150 to contemplate all of this.

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