Embryos Up for Personhood in Colorado, Even the Gay Ones?

| Thu May 15, 2008 9:09 PM EDT

Lots of big news the last couple of days. The polar bear apparently has the right to protection under the Endangered Species Act. California same-sex couples can, in fact, marry. McCain has amended his Iraq 100-year-plan to say most troops will out by 2013. Hell, we may even tax porn. But amid all of the news of progress have you heard this one?

On Tuesday the group Colorado for Equal Rights submitted 131,245 signatures to place an initiative on the November ballot that would define a fertilized embryo as a person. Voters will decide on the measure that would amend the state Constitution to extend a fertilized embryo equal rights and protections. It would define "any human being from the moment of fertilization" as a "person" for purposes of the state's constitutional provisions "relating to inalienable rights, equality of justice and due process of law."

Never mind that the 'moment of fertilization' is not a medical definition and is almost impossible to determine. Consensus from women's rights organizations is that the amendment would be catastrophic for women and their ability to determine their own futures. Doctors and legal rights experts say the amendment could trigger governmental investigations into miscarriages, restrict in-vitro fertilization by couples trying to conceive, and could limit birth-control methods.

And to those hundred thousand-plus Coloradoans who endorsed the measure into being, if they so passionately believe in equal rights, what about the gay embryos? Equality still fair game? Just a thought.

Get Mother Jones by Email - Free. Like what you're reading? Get the best of MoJo three times a week.