Today, in the UK an inquiry will begin into the abortion of disabled children. The underlying question is to do with the impact of abortion on disabled people, and does this mean the disabled people are being let down? Discriminated against in some way?
UK opens inquiry into abortion of disabled children
by Xavier Symons | 22 Feb 2013 |
The UK parliament has begun a controversial new inquiry into abortion on the grounds of disability. The inquiry aims to discover the impact of abortion on the disabled and whether this constitutes discrimination. The enquiry will run until the end of next month and is being co-ordinated by a 12-member bipartisan committee chaired by Fiona Bruce MP
Under British law, an abortion can take place up to birth (40 weeks) if tests indicate that a child may be “severely disabled” when born. The term “severely disabled” has been liberally interpreted by many doctors, to the extent that minor defects such as a cleft pallet or club foot have become sufficient grounds for an abortion.
This is one of those topics that people tend to have an instant yes or no answers to, so I wonder if many people have thought about it much at all? Those parents who have been given a diagnosis of a disability in their baby will of course have to think long and hard about what to do, but when the decision is made they will need care and concern as they cope with life or death. I would say life always brings some joy and death has grief alongside. For these parents they have to deal with joy and grief whatever they choose to do.
On this same day there is a Facebook picture of a man and his baby, at first glance you see a man,s smiling face and baby on his chest in a baby sling, it is only later you realise that the man has no limbs. This man happens to be a motivational speaker with a large following. Would this same man have been better off not here in the world with us? This is a real question? would our world really be better if he had not made it?
Of course you may argue that he is the exception, but when push comes to shove we all want to be the exception. Anyway it is time to have these conversations not behind closed doors, but in the staff rooms of work places up and down the country. Time to have it all in the open.
In special memory of brave Katherine who lived and died with DEBRA debra.org.uk/about-debra.html. She taught me a lot of stuff when I was her friend, she taught me to ask for help, and although she could not have a hug when her skin was sore she always smiled if she could. She loved life.