Sofia Vergara’s Ex-Fiancé: Our Frozen Embryos “Have a Right to Live,” Opposes “Killing Them”

Bioethics   Steven Ertelt   Apr 30, 2015   |   4:26PM    Washington, DC

Sofia Vergara’s former fiance’ Nick Loeb is continuing his battle to protect his children — even though they are in the embryonic stage of life.

As LifeNews previously reported, Loeb has filed a lawsuit against Modern Family actress, Sofia Vergara, in an attempt to stop her from destroying a pair of frozen embryos they created while they were engaged. Now, he’s speaking out more forcefully and taking a decidedly pro-life tact in how he describes his embryonic children, saying they have a “right to live” and that he opposes “killing them.”

In May 2014, the couple broke off their engagement after four years of dating. A source close to Loeb explained that he didn’t want to see the embryos destroyed because he’s always believed that life begins at conception. The couple created the embryos through in vitro fertilization.

The lawsuit was filed under a pseudonym and states, “John Doe seeks to ensure that the Female Embryos are not destroyed, but Jane Doe [Vergara] refuses to agree to their preservation under all circumstances.” The lawsuit also alleges that Vergara was both physically and emotionally abusive toward Loeb.

However, other sources say that Loeb is just trying to stay apart of Vergara‘s life. One source told Radar Online, “If these embryos were implanted into a surrogate, Nick would almost certainly go after Sofia for child support. As the highest paid actress on television, the financial incentive needs to also be considered.”

On Thursday, he penned an op-ed in The New York Times titled “Our Frozen Embryos Have a Right to Live,” and argued that keeping the embryos “frozen forever is tantamount to killing them.”

“Shouldn’t a man who is willing to take on all parental responsibilities be similarly entitled to bring his embryos to term even if the woman objects?”

“When we create embryos for the purpose of life, should we not define them as life, rather than as property? Does one person’s desire to avoid biological parenthood (free of any legal obligations) outweigh another’s religious beliefs in the sanctity of life and desire to be a parent?”

Here’s the latest from the op-ed in the New York Times from Loeb:

LAST August, I filed a complaint in Santa Monica, Calif., using pseudonyms, to protect two frozen embryos I created with my former fiancée. I wanted to keep this private, but recently the story broke to the world. It has gotten attention not only because of the people involved — my ex is Sofía Vergara, who stars in the ABC series “Modern Family” — but also because embryonic custody disputes raise important questions about life, religion and parenthood.

When we create embryos for the purpose of life, should we not define them as life, rather than as property? Does one person’s desire to avoid biological parenthood (free of any legal obligations) outweigh another’s religious beliefs in the sanctity of life and desire to be a parent? A woman is entitled to bring a pregnancy to term even if the man objects. Shouldn’t a man who is willing to take on all parental responsibilities be similarly entitled to bring his embryos to term even if the woman objects? These are issues that, unlike abortion, have nothing to do with the rights over one’s own body, and everything to do with a parent’s right to protect the life of his or her unborn child.

In 2013, Sofía and I agreed to try to use in vitro fertilization and a surrogate to have children. We signed a form stating that any embryos created through the process could be brought to term only with both parties’ consent. The form did not specify — as California law requires — what would happen if we separated. I am asking to have it voided.

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My lawyers have identified 10 other cases in the United States in which a parent tried to have a fertilized, frozen embryo taken to term against the wishes of an opposing parent. In eight of those cases, the parent seeking custody lost. In the other two cases, one in Pennsylvania and one in Illinois, a woman was awarded custody of fertilized embryos over the man’s objections. In both cases, the woman had undergone chemotherapy treatment and the embryos were her last chance to have a biological child; judges ruled that the woman’s interest in becoming a parent outweighed the man’s interest in not becoming a parent. In the Illinois case (now on appeal), the judge found that the form the couple signed was not the binding contract, and instead enforced a verbal promise the man made to help the woman have children.

Many have asked me: Why not just move on and have a family of your own? I have every intention of doing so. But that doesn’t mean I should let the two lives I have already created be destroyed or sit in a freezer until the end of time.

For as long as I can remember, I have dreamed of being a parent. I was only a year old when my parents divorced. My father gained custody, and my mother virtually disappeared from my life. I did not see her again until I was 9, and she died when I was 20. This made me yearn for the type of family based on the images one might see in a Norman Rockwell painting.

When I was in my 20s, I had a girlfriend who had an abortion, and the decision was entirely out of my hands. Ever since, I have dreamed about a boy at the age he would be now.

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