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The most politically incorrect lawsuit in the world: The black child as harm


Despite some moral concerns, the legal figure of the "child as harm" is now widely recognized. However, no one would have heard of the "black child as harm" - until now. Because of the color of her daughter's skin, an American is suing the sperm bank from which she obtained her dark-skinned father's sperm for pain and suffering.

Jennifer Cramblett knows only too well what it is like to belong to a minority. The American lives with her partner Amanda Zinkon in the small, rural town of Uniontown in the American state of Ohio, which is not exactly known for its progressive mentality. But Cramblett may be a lesbian, but she is still: a white lesbian.

That cannot be said of her two-year-old daughter Payton. Their skin has the light-dark tint that is typical for children with one black and one white parent. And that's why Cramblett is now suing the sperm bank, from which she obtained six vials of Payton's father's sperm in September 2011.

Most likely, it will succeed. For it seems that the institute made a serious mistake when sending it: instead of the sperm from donor no.380, those from donor no.330 were erroneously sent. According to the application, this is because the donor number is only written down by hand; the clerk simply confused the two numbers. If that is true, the liability is obvious: Cramblett had dealt with the background of various candidates in a long process and ultimately decided on No. 380. If she receives the genetic material from a completely different donor, then there is obviously a breach of duty.

Lament has the traits of a real satire

Crambletts would be just one of the many horror stories about swapped vials in reproductive medicine, if, yes, if the sperm sperm sent incorrectly weren't from a black donor, and Cramblett put that very fact at the center of their complaint.

This is of course hard to beat in terms of political incorrectness, and so the lawsuit initially asserts, for the sake of good form, that Payton is a beautiful child whom the plaintiff and her partner would love very much. But - oh, how do we best say it? - Payton is black after all. Or brown. At least not know. And that is why her mother is haunted every day by "fears, worries and insecurities about the future together". After all, only whites lived in their community, and several members of their family were - we are paraphrasing here - seasoned racists!

Sometimes you have to suppress the smile when it is stated, for example, that Cramblett had no contact with black people until she entered the university. As if it were an exotic jungle people and not a group of people to which a good 14 percent of the US population, including its president, belong. The description of the everyday difficulties to which the plaintiff is exposed also bears traits of real satire. Obviously it is necessary to visit a hairdresser in a black neighborhood because the Uniontowner hairdressers are unable to cope with the unruly hair growth of little Payton.

... and at the same time meets an unbearable reality

At the same time, the concerns that Cramblett has with regard to her daughter's later schooling in the conservative residential area and the discrimination to be expected there still correspond to the unfortunate reality. As scandalous as the thought may seem on the one hand, it cannot be dismissed out of hand: especially in some rural regions of the country, life is actually easier with a white child than with a non-white child.

The case about which the Chicago Tribune reported, has since sparked a national debate on discrimination. It is unclear whether the court will agree with the plaintiff's considerations. In any case, it does not seem ruled out - that would make the black child real damage in the legal sense.

Constantin Baron van Lijnden, The most politically incorrect lawsuit in the world: The black child as harm. In: Legal Tribune Online, October 9, 2014, (accessed on: May 19, 2021)

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  • A reverse constellation would also be conceivable.
    If a black woman lives in a purely black residential area and also lives professionally and privately in purely black communities, perhaps in the environment of the former Black Panther movement, where it is frowned upon for black women to have sexual contact with white people, there a "half-white" child could also lead to irritation in the social environment, and perhaps to alienation and exclusion, as well as speculation about whether the mother might have gotten involved with a white person.
    Similar complications would also be conceivable in China, Japan, and many other countries.
    So it's not that only white Americans would struggle with it.
    Almost all societies tend to discriminate against actual or suspected inappropriate social and sexual behavior, and to blaspheme about other people, even though what the other people do is actually nothing to do with the blasphemers.
    Really 100% enlightened and 100% liberal societies are likely to be the exception in the world.
    In New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Toronto, Ottawa, Amsterdam, Malmö, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Berlin and Cologne, the majority of the people may be very progressive, but overall the majority of humanity is probably not that advanced yet .

    Globetrotter in Austria
  • Thank you for the example with the black mother, the change of perspective stimulates thought - also in other areas.

    But I find that the racism / culturalism debate reported in this article misses the mother's real (?) Concern or problem.

    After my research, I refer to the sperm bank as a service provider whose task is to find a suitable donor. For this anonymous sperm donation, the mother / couple usually specifies criteria such as skin and hair color, blood group and the like.

    Parents often want the child they conceive not to look too different from the father, for example to hide this process - perhaps more from their own child than from the outside world. And the sperm bank must reliably carry out this filtering out. If the child had a black skin color instead of the white of his parents, then the supposed father would "look very stupid" (e.g. woman cheated on, cuckoo child).

    By the way, hereditary diseases are sometimes more common in one or both families as a reason for conception with foreign semen (e.g. Down syndrome?). You would like to fulfill your desire to have children without expecting the child to suffer from the disease - this can apparently be ruled out 100% using genetic analysis methods. If, due to an oversight like the one in the article, the child nevertheless exhibits this condition, the service provider may not have carried out his order correctly.

    The black girl of a white mother may be about cultural, social problems for the foreseeable future (e.g. the child moves away when they come of age).

    If the service provider should make such a mistake in the case of hereditary diseases, the family will face significant economic burdens, depending on the type of disease. Therapies, care, home remodeling and purchase of special aids. The service provider could then be prosecuted and might have to assume these costs as part of his liability. (Just like I have to pay for the cost of converting an apartment if, for example, I am responsible for a person's paraplegia due to an accident.) This should be regulated in the interests of both parties, the parents and the sperm bank.

    To put it bluntly:
    If the service provider does not deliver as instructed, then he must pay reasonable compensation. The wrong pizza is the wrong pizza, regardless of whether I like the tuna on the wrong pizza or am "allergic" (racist) to it.

    That doesn't have to mean that despite the lawsuit, the mother will refuse her pizza ... cough ... daughter. I only hope for the child that the mother is wrong and that it will grow up well despite the environment and existing prejudices!

  • I am a private sperm donor and have unfortunately found that even couples where one partner is black and the other white, it is always important to the couple that the donor should be white. Even with couples where both are black, the couple usually wants a white donor. It shows well that little has changed in society. I wish that black people in general had more self-confidence and that black skin color is just as 100% perfect as white skin color. So far I have had around 25 inquiries from mixed or black couples. From this one can quite seriously derive a small private statistic.

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