I have heard every reason for why our country MUST have legal abortion; from back alleys with coat hangers to the incest argument. I have been told that it is a woman’s body and what I don't know about birthing babies, I have a penis. People argue that it is a fetus and before that it is a zygote, not a child. Telling me I am religious zealot for thinking that the determination of life can only be made at conception. Getting lectured regarding the burden on society that results from woman being forced to have countless unaborted babies and giving them up for adoption. “Are you going to adopt that child?” I hear. Yet, the one thing that has never been properly explained to me is: When does a fetus become a child? If we leave the date of life as a ‘?’ we could artificially make it any day we want. Theoretically, 1 week past full term birth.
Well, recently the Journal of Medical Ethics released an article written by Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva titled, After birth Abortions: Why Should the Baby Live? The authors propose that an infant does not have any additional moral right to life then that of an aborted fetus. In fact, they reject the term infanticide, as that would preclude a moral right to exist, and instead use the phrase ‘after birth abortions’.
In determining the reasons why such practice could be conceived as being morally responsible, the authors recycle all the same excuse for abortion: financial hardship of the mother (or parents), illness, incest, rap, ect. However, defending the practice of abortion or ‘after birth abortion’ is not the goal. The goal of the article was to establish that a full term, new born child had no more moral right to life then that of an aborted fetus. They explain that ‘right to life’ is established by the desires of the new born to want something for itself. While the mother might grant that child a right to life be placing value on it; a mother that wishes not to impart that right can be justified in knowing that this child doesn’t have any societal moral rights to exist. The authors cannot determine when that right to life begins. They are open to the idea that it may be as late as a couple of weeks post full term birth.
Our society has gone from rejecting abortion, to back alley abortion, through legal abortions, into high school girls placing newborns into shoe boxes and finally now proposing the idea that newborns are not humans. The rights of the mother to kill have continued to expand, now they want to extend those rights past birth.
When I explained to pro-choice supporters, the possibility that killing a child after birth could be acceptable if we allow abortion before birth, they all scuffed. They would say, “Why must you always take it to the extreme?” Well, with the extreme in sight, it will become less and less extreme until that day it is accepted. What is next, 1 year olds? “Why must you always take it to the extreme?” Well we could apply everything in this article to a child that is 1. There are diseases that develop, financial hardships that develop and personal issues that develop. Unless you determine a life begins at a non-subjective point in time, this question will progress to open murder based on what society determines is a ‘right to life’.
We have seen the effects of this in the city of Milwaukee. As a society we have allowed the killing of children whom were born to parents that co-sleep. We supply them with free cribs, we cry out in horror every time it happens and we produce billboards with babies sleeping with butcher knives; but we haven't actually addressed the issue. We have never charged the parents with reckless homicide. Our culture has determined that a newborns life may not have the same rights to exist as the rest of us. If a parent lay on top of an 8yr old, smothering him, that parent would be charged with homicide. The same safety we apply to older children has been lost to those who require the highest protection.
While open infanticide, sorry after birth abortions, is not legal in the US, the value of a child’s life has diminished. One would have to travel to the Netherlands, where doctors there are allowed to kill ill or handicapped children post birth. In a progressive society that deems the value of needs over the value of life; they can determine that the long term needs of a handicapped child (both on parents and child) out weigh that child’s right to life. I pray the US never reaches that level of depravity; however it must be pointed out that as a senator of IL, Obama voted for a law that would allow a child that escapes an abortion to be killed post birth. Maybe we are closer then we think.