Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Culture of Death Speaks

In the London Times:

Eugenics is one of those knock-down words used to silence argument. It was used several times last week, in radio discussions and articles about women choosing to give birth to babies with Down’s syndrome.

The subject came up partly as advance publicity for a Sky Real Lives television documentary this Wednesday about a heroic young woman who adopted seven babies with Down’s, whose mothers had rejected them. There was also a BBC news story last week suggesting that more women these days are knowingly choosing to give birth to babies with Down’s.

In fact the news story was misleading.

Actually, the proportion of pregnant women who choose to abort their foetuses when antenatal screening has detected Down’s syndrome has remained constant since screening started, at about 91%. Also the number of Down’s abortions has tripled since 1989. The total number of babies born with Down’s each year has indeed increased since then, but not by much. This small increase may be due in part to the fact that many women have children when they are much older these days, and some of them refuse antenatal screening.


I protest out of long personal experience.

Someone close to me in our family has a learning disability, which has been a handicap and a sorrow to her, and my lifelong experience of children and adults with learning disabilities, including many with Down’s, as they have grown older has given me a different perspective. I am convinced that it is a grave misfortune for babies to be born with Down’s or any comparably serious syndrome. It’s a misfortune for their parents and their siblings as well. Sad observations over decades have convinced me: a damaged baby is a damaged family, even now.

Bold mine. Wow. Just wow. Someone's child won't be going to Eton and then on to Oxford, oh the tragedy. She's right here though ...
There are some strange contradictions surrounding the question of abortion. People who reject abortion as always wrong are consistent and one cannot argue with them. But anyone who thinks abortion is acceptable under some circumstances, and who yet disapproves of what’s emotionally seen as “eugenic” abortion, is in an untenable position.
Pro-life is all or nothing.

A commenter writes "no one has the right to judge another's unique and personal situation."

Then, how is it that a parent can be allowed kill their child? Contradiction.

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