Logic: You're doing it wrong

Netflix has been my friend this maternity leave, and I'm catching up on one of my favorite shows, Law and Order: SVU.

Love the show. Dislike the boneheaded logic spouted in some episodes, such as "Mask" (Season 12, episode 13). Here's a choice quote:

"The Catholic Church considers IVF to be a sin. I called the Pope and invited him to come and meet some of our babies. So far, no response." - doctor at a "reproductive services" clinic that does IVF and experiments on embryos

Her logic, simplified:

Babies are good. IVF produces babies. Therefore, IVF is good.

Let's apply that logic elsewhere:

Babies are good. Acts of rape sometimes produce babies. Therefore, rape is good.

Huh? You mean that doesn't work? Rape is still bad and immoral even though the children who are the result of acts of rape are not?



  1. Thank you!! My gosh, this is not rocket science, people! Ends and means are DIFFERENT. Sometimes, people get to a good end by employing evil or immoral means. We all get that, right? Sigh.

  2. I am not Catholic, rather, I was raised Nazarene and am currently attending an LCMS church, but why is the Catholic Church against IVF? I understand why they are against homosexuality and abortion, but I've never fully understood. Could you put it in layman terms for me? I tried googling it a few times, and merely wound up confused. (And I'm not trying to be snarky or anything, I am really, really curious).

  3. Nora, I am sure JoAnna can give you lots of info, but in the meantime, here is a short primer:


    Essentially, it is immoral to artificially separate the two inherent aspects of the marital act: Union and procreation. So, if you make babies in a lab without sex, that is wrong (not to mention the hundreds of thousands of embryos who are destroyed or frozen in the quest for a child at all costs). And if you alter sex so that it cannot produce babies, that is also wrong.

    God designed sex to be both unitive and procreative. There are hosts of ethical problems when we humans decide to separate those two aspects. It's the mindset that brought us contraception, sterilization, abortion, homosexuality, IVF and human cloning, research on human embryos, etc. The brave new world that we don't really have any right to "build".

    Here is a three-minute video of a doctor answering that question for a radio listener:



    Every child deserves the dignity of being conceived in the marital embrace.

    Hope that helps!

  4. Whoops, that seemed weird at the end, as I cut and pasted some sentences carelessly! Sorry!!

  5. Good stuff JoAnna and Leila. Thank you for being such strong apologists!


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