In October last year we told you about Jennifer Cramblett and Amanda Zinkon, an American same-sex couple who had given birth to a mixed-race baby despite their expectations of a white one. Cramblett subsequently pursued legal action against the sperm bank whose services they utilised.
Last week The Washington Post reported that an Illinois judge tossed out her claim against Midwest Sperm Bank. DuPage County judge Ronald Sutter threw out the lawsuit Thursday, agreeing with attorneys for the sperm bank who argued that it lacked legal merit.
The sperm bank’s lawyers had argued that “wrongful birth” suits normally apply to cases where the child is born with a birth defect that doctors should have warned parents about. In Cramblett and Zinkon’s case, however, the child is healthy.
The judge also rejected Cramblett’s damages claims for “breach of warranty”, saying that she could refile the suit as a “negligence claim”.
The controversial centre of Cramblett’s claim is that she was ill-equipped to raise an African American child and that her community and her “unconsciously insensitive” family members might not be accepting of a child of a different race.
“Getting a young daughter’s hair cut is not particularly stressful for most mothers, but to Jennifer it is not a routine matter, because Payton has hair typical of an African American girl,” the lawsuit said. “To get a decent cut, Jennifer must travel to a black neighborhood, far from where she lives, where she is obviously different in appearance, and not overtly welcome.”
She sought at least $50,000 in damages, according to The Washington Post.