Sunday, March 18, 2012

Infanticide vs After-Birth Abortion

I read an article this week that made me sick. Usually there is enough of a distance between me and the object of moral dilemmas, but this one hit a bit too close to Noelle. This article from The Journal of Medical Ethics advocates the use of after-birth abortion. The premise is that there is nothing magical about a baby passing through the birth canal, so logically if the abortion of a fetus is permissible, why not the abortion of a newborn? I agree with the logical progression; there is nothing magical about birth that makes a fetus more of a person than it formerly was. I have a serious problem with the assumption that baby, whatever the stage, is less of a person than you or I.

Other gems from this disaster include changing the term 'infanticide' to 'after-birth abortion' to demonstrate that there are "circumstances where killing a newborn is ethically feasible." There's also this: "In cases where the after-birth abortion were requested for non-medical reasons, we do not suggest any threshold, as it depends on the neurological development of newborns, which is something neurologists and psychologists would be able to assess." In lieu of their reluctance to propose an age, allow me to pick....26. That's the age that the government has decided that kids have claim on their parents for health insurance, sounds fitting to let parents decide whether the kids live or not.

On top of all that, this surfaced from a couple living near Portland - a family suing for wrongful birth. They love their Down's Syndrome baby girl very much and asked for $7 million (awarded close to $3 million) to help raise her, but they would have aborted if they had known she had the condition. I'm not arguing the doctor and lab techs didn't make mistakes, just that it would take a whole lot more money than that to state on public record where all my children can hear that I would have aborted one of them.

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