From Catholic Mom:
Trig Palin, son of Republican Vice-Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, has elicited many positive responses from those who value human life. However, he has also brought out the worst in those who think it better that children with Downs Syndrome are never born. The executive vice-president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada thinks Sarah Palin set a poor example when she elected to give birth to Trig rather than aborting him:
According to the Globe and Mail, Dr. Andre Lalonde, executive vice-president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada (SOGC), is worried that Palin’s decision to give birth to Trig, despite knowing about his condition, could influence other women in similar situations, but who lack the financial and emotional support that Palin had access to.
“The worry is that this will have an implication for abortion issues in Canada,” he said.
Citing his concern for women’s “freedom to choose”, Lalonde said that popular examples about women like Palin, who choose not to kill their unborn children, could have negative effects on women and their families, reported the Globe.
Like many, I am troubled by the implications of Alaska governor and Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s decision to knowingly give birth to a child disabled with Down syndrome. Given that Palin’s decision is being celebrated in some quarters, it is crucial to reaffirm the morality of aborting a fetus diagnosed with Down syndrome (or by extension, any unborn fetus)—a freedom that anti-abortion advocates seek to deny.
A parent has a moral obligation to provide for his or her children until these children are equipped to provide for themselves. Because a person afflicted with Down syndrome is only capable of being marginally productive (if at all) and requires constant care and supervision, unless a parent enjoys the wealth to provide for the lifetime of assistance that their child will require, they are essentially stranding the cost of their child’s life upon others.
The sheer degree of arrogance required to put forth these ideas is mind-boggling. It is very easy to cast aspersions upon those who maintain such a utilitarian view of the value of life. Truly the comment boxes of many blogs discussing these views are filled with snide comments and personal insults. Yet such responses do nothing to bring about a conversion of hearts. Therefore, I appreciate Michael Scaperlanda’s response at Mirror of Justice. He links to this extremely powerful address given by Dr. Leon Kass at the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. in 2006:
Practitioners of pre-natal diagnosis, working today with but a fraction of the information soon to be available from the Human Genome Project, already screen for a long list of genetic diseases and abnormalities, from Down’s syndrome to dwarfism. Possession of any one of these defects, they believe, renders a prospective child unworthy of life. Persons who happen still to be born with these conditions, having somehow escaped the spreading net of detection and eugenic abortion, are increasingly regarded as “mistakes,” as inferior human beings who should not have been born. Not long ago, at my own university, a physician making rounds with medical students stood over the bed of an intelligent, otherwise normal ten-year-old boy with spina bifida. “Were he to have been conceived today,” the physician casually informed his entourage, “he would have been aborted.” A woman I know with a child who has Down syndrome is asked by total strangers, “Didn’t you have an amnio?” The eugenic mentality is taking root, and we are subtly learning with the help of science to believe that there really are certain lives unworthy of being born.
This is just a snippet of this insightful discourse by Dr. Kass. Please take the time to read the whole thing. Then share it with someone else. We are being incredibly naive if we think this eugenic mentality will not creep farther and farther into our culture. There is no safe amount of evil.
St. Michael the Archangel,
Defend us this day in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and may thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the Power of God, cast into Hell, Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.