The stunning announcement that a California woman had given birth to eight babies, octuplets, was greeted warmly in some circles. The birthing doctors were all smiles and the media was hyping the “human interest” part of the story. Eight babies! Wow!
But behind the high-fives lies a very troubling situation. This may be child abuse at the highest level.
Here are the facts: The mother, Nadya Suleman, is a 33-year-old single mom already raising six young children in the small home of her parents. Nadya is a health care worker who, according to her mother, became pregnant with all the children through in-vitro fertilization.
But six was not enough for Nadya, so last spring she allowed multiple embryos to be implanted in her womb and, subsequently, the octuplets were born on January 26th.
In Great Britain, Nadya and her doctor would be under arrest. There, the law permits only two embryo implants at a time. But in California, there are no rules at all. Fertility clinics and the doctors who make big money from them can do anything they want.
So, now, Nadya has eight new babies, all of whom weigh less than three pounds. The littlest is about a pound and a half. Doctors say there is a strong likelihood that some, if not all, of the babies will experience major health problems growing up.
When the babies finally leave the hospital in suburban Los Angeles, they will be taken to a three bedroom house in Whittier, California. Seventeen human beings will be living in that house. Eight babies will have to be fed, washed, and cared for around the clock almost simultaneously.
Who will pay for that? Chances are the taxpayers. Nadya has little money and her parents filed for bankruptcy. By the way, the hospital bill for the octuplets and mom is estimated to be around $1.3 million.
But Nadya seems to have a plan. She has hired a “spokesperson,” a woman named Joann Killeen. Joann has been running around various TV shows telling the world what a great person and mother Nadya is, and what a joy she is to be around. When asked if the mother of the year wants major money to tell her story, Ms. Killeen dodges and weaves.
This is child abuse of the worst kind and few seem to care. The taxpayers will wind up paying for much of Nadya’s irresponsibility, and the fourteen children will pay an enormous price… just wait and see.
Meantime, a callous media and a largely apathetic state medical system will watch to see whether it will be Oprah or Barbara or Katie to give the babies their first TV starring roles.
America is a great country. This is the worst of it.