In the low countries there's a bit of a discussion ongoing about sperm donations.
At the core is the distinction between genetic offspring versus memetic offspring. But let me get the preamble out of the way first.
In the Netherlands, they're landing firmly on the side of genes trump everything. There a man remains responsible in every way for the children produced with his sperm. And men are paying child support for children they've never even known to exist.
In Belgium, the debate is still ongoing, but for the time being, sperm donations are still anonymous.
What IS a memetic child? It's the child whom you consider to be your offspring and who considers you their parent. And as silly as this might sound this is not unknown in law. A child born to a married couple is by default considered the natural offspring of both parents, even if the father is in doubt (or even where the father is KNOW to be a 'third party'). The husband still has to go through legal preceedings to stop the state from considering the child his. In adoptions too, a state will consider a child that is clearly not genetic offspring as the actual offspring of a couple.
So, what about sperm (or egg cell for that matter) donations? Who's right here? Belgium or the Netherlands?
Personally, I think the Dutch have it wrong. There's no mental connection between a child conceived via donated sperm and the originator of that sperm. Why force the man to pay for that child? And, yes, they get visitation rights ... for a child that is a complete stranger for them.
And yes, I know children get an identity sledgehammer to the face when they find out that dad is not dad. But ... why? Why is the genetic stressed so much over the memetic. OK, I get that our genes themselves "want" us to feel that way. It's their reason for existing. But we knowingly go against our genes every single day in other ways. So why not in the case of parenthood?
Should laws consider memetic parenthood on equal footing to genetic?
Should we, as a society, do so?
And if so, what cans of worms would we be opening? "You see, your honour, Random Celebrity Millionaire has always been like a father to me, even though I've never met him, so I should get part of his estate."