I don't know where to start with this Sunday Times article that posits that men are on the road to extinction and that in the future belongs to womenkind.
It begins with The Human Tissue and Embryos Bill currently working its way through British Parliament, which deals with "reproductive technologies" and the legal status of those who contribute biological material in order to create a child in the lab.
From there it moves onto the Y (male) chromosome and posits that this is in decline. Deleterious mutations build up in this chromosome until it becomes non functional and the carrier of it becomes sterile. According to the article about 7% of men today are so afflicted and that proportion is rising.
A professor quoted in the article has calculated that at the current mutation rate there will be no functional Y chromosome to be found within the human population within 125,000 years. Makes you wonder how we got this far?
Never fear science is on the job, and the article moves onto current initiatives to create sperm in the lab, either by smashing embryos - something that has already been achieved with mice or possibly using stem cells taken from bone marrow.
We then move on to examine a new family structure, the two female household with children. This family structure has emerged in the past few years but of course only one of the adults is biologically related to the children - in the background there is a male who has contributed his genetic legacy to this family. How big a role he plays in the daily life of the family depends, I suppose, but usually not very much to none at all would be my guess. But these people a trail blazers - the advance guard of a brave new world.
And the future is clear, if you believe this article, a world where men are redundant and have become extinct.
When future generations of womenkind decide it is time to reproduce off to the lab they will go. One will take the role of mother, the other of father. Stem cells will be extracted from the one who has decided to adopt the paternal part, upon which the white coats will work their magic transforming them into sperm. Eggs will be extracted from the (m)other and in a petrie dish a new (female) person will begin to take form.
With the artificial womb the whole technology will be complete.
The happy couple will be able to return to the lab after 40 weeks to pick up their little bundle of joy.
And they all will live happily ever after.