A married lesbian couple I’m acquainted with, who live in Paris (one is a U.S. expatriate and the other a Canadian one), went the in vitro route, picking a sperm donor to fertilize eggs from one of the two ladies, who is now carrying that child. We’re talking Francophiles. We’re talking lesbians. We’re talking socialists. We’re talking champions of embryonic stem cell research and fierce critics of Bush, including his approach to the said research. So here’s the twist: When the mothers were asked if they’d like to donate and sign over the unused, remaining embryos from the procedure — which would otherwise just be discarded — to stem cell research, they declined. They somehow didn’t “feel right” about it.

Next: A married heterosexual couple I know in Pittsburgh recently had their second child. This liberal Jewish couple, at least one half coming from a liberal-Jewish family, are — like most working, apolitical, non-thinker young couples — recreational Bush bashers, including mocking and deriding his position on stem cells.

The latest option that birthing couples are given by hospitals these days is an offer to freeze and preserve the umbilical cord and placenta of the baby, which involves paying a small monthly or yearly rate — in the event of a catastrophic illness later in the baby’s life, that would require the use of stem cells (the best stem cells, of course, being that individual’s own). But this couple — who treat themselves to fancy meals at restaurants on a more or less weekly basis — declined to spring for preserving their child’s DNA-rich, stem cell-rich afterbirth.

So there you have it. Though we probably could have guessed. Somehow, “liberal hypocrisy” doesn’t quite cover it.