No One Wants a Redheaded Baby

redheadsFull disclosure: I love redheads. Gingers. Carrot Tops. Copper Heads. Whatever name you want to give 'em, I think people fortunate enough to have gorgeous red hair naturally growing out of their heads are incredibly lucky. As are those who have a colorist talented enough to make it look like they have gorgeous red hair naturally growing out of their heads.

So I really don't understand why the world's largest sperm bank, Cryos International, is turning away redheaded donors. Apparently the demand for tawny tresses is so low that Cryos doesn't even want their ... contributions to society, as it were.

This, my friends, is highly disturbing news.


Not merely because it smacks of Ginger Discrimination, a grievous enough offense. What bothers me is that people are choosing (or not choosing, as the case may be) sperm donors based on meaningless physical traits.

I know it sounds innocent enough, to exhibit a preference for what color hair or eyes your child will end up having, but the larger issue here is that this process of selection doesn't account for all of the other traits you're passing up by narrowing your choices down.

I get why someone would want to avoid donors with a family history of congenital heart defects or cystic fibrosis or some other potentially life-threatening inherited condition. But even though health and appearance both manifest physically, they are not of the same importance. One is of great value and the other is not, no matter what society tells us.

Anyway, whether or not your child's father has red hair might not even matter. As a recessive trait, the redheaded gene often skips a generation, meaning it would make more sense for anti-gingers to examine the hair color of a sperm donor's parents, aunts, uncles, and so on.


Do you think it's messed up for people to discriminate against sperm donors because of their hair color?

Image via barockschloss/Flickr

Read More >