Sunday, October 23

ALL ABOUT PERFECT BABIES AND INVIDIOUS DISTINCTIONS

I often point to and quote from articles, Op-Ed pieces, and news reports in the "Houston Chronicle," because I live in the greater Houston area. I invariably add a note to my readers that the online edition of the Chronicle requires registration, but I fail to mention that it is "free registration" and no bid deal to complete. It'll only take a minute or so.

I say this, because I encourage you this morning to register so that you can read a very touching piece, published in the "Outlook" section of the print edition, by Patricia E. Bauer, a former "Washington Post" reporter and bureau chief. Ms. Bauer's Op-Ed column is re-published, having first appeared in the "WP." Patricia Bauer, so you know, is the mother of a daughter born with Down Syndrome, who, as she writes, "represents a group whose ranks are shrinking because of the wide availability of prenatal testing and abortion."

She opens her column with this statement:

If it's unacceptable for William Bennett to link abortion even conversationally with a whole class of people (and, of course, it is), why then do we as a society view abortion as justified and unremarkable in the case of another class of people: children with disabilities?

As occurred in ancient societies, she notes:

In ancient Greece, babies with disabilities were left out in the elements to die. We in America rely on prenatal genetic testing to make our selections in private, but the effect on society is the same.


She concludes poignantly:

What I don't understand is how we as a society can tacitly write off a whole group of people as having no value. I'd like to think that it's time to put that particular piece of baggage on the table and talk about it, but I'm not optimistic. People want what they want: a perfect baby, a perfect life. To which I say: Good luck. Or maybe, dream on.

And here's one more piece of un-discussable baggage: This question is a small but nonetheless significant part of what's driving the abortion discussion in this country. I have to think that there are many pro-choicers who, while paying obeisance to the rights of people with disabilities, want at the same time to preserve their right to ensure that no one with disabilities will be born into their own families. The abortion debate is not just about a woman's right to choose whether to have a baby; it's also about a woman's right to choose which baby she wants to have.


I hope you'll register and read the entire piece. Abortion-on-demand -- a by-product of the abominable Roe v. Wade decision -- is generating more than just millions of dead preborns. As Patricia notes, it's virtually eliminating entire groups of people and with them the humanity of the human heart that need not love only perfection.

Abortion mills kill sentient human beings and in a production-line, out-of sight, out-of-mind, environment of cold-hearted disinterest. It's as if the Pro-Choicers believe that as long as you don't attach a name, you won't be obliged to attach your heart.

Writes Patricia lovingly of her daughter:

Margaret is a person and a member of our family. She has my husband's eyes, my hair and my mother-in-law's sense of humor. We love and admire her because of who she is — feisty and zesty and full of life — not in spite of it. She enriches our lives. If we might not have chosen to welcome her into our family, given the choice, then that is a statement more about our ignorance than about her inherent worth.



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