January Event-in-a-Box: Fetal Abnormalities:I have written and re-written this blog article a few times. It is hard to find the right words for this topic because so much of the information that I found is heartbreaking. Amid all the tragedy around the world, “more love less hate” is the chant of much of our society. Ironically, a certain population has been given a death sentence from society and is even the target of “killing off” their entire population. This demographic of individuals has the capacity to love and empathize in a way that I believe more of us need to learn.
Iceland’s attempt to eliminate an entire population of human beings- using abortion- that just so happen to be individuals with Down Syndrome is by no other word, wrong. News stories can be found with headlines such as “Iceland has practically eliminated Down Syndrome”. No, Iceland, you’ve eliminated people, you’ve eliminated future generations- without acknowledging the devastation that abortion can bring about. Does the word Holocaust come to mind?
In a report done by CBS, “Since prenatal screening tests were introduced in Iceland in the early 2000s, the vast majority of women -- close to 100 percent -- who received a positive test for Down syndrome terminated their pregnancy.” And the US is not far behind with a termination rate of 67 percent!
Let’s talk about these wonderful individuals that society has deemed “undeserving of life”.
Facts and mythsMyth: People with Down Syndrome won’t live long
Fact: Research has shown that individuals with Down’s can live to be 60 years old or even older- with proper medical guidance.
Myth: People with Down Syndrome cannot live a mainstream lifestyle.
Fact: Most people with Down syndrome learn to walk and talk, and many are now attending mainstream schools, passing exams and living full, semi-independent adult lives. Examples of this can be seen all over Hollywood!
Myth: Down Syndrome only occurs in pregnancies of women over 35 years old.
Fact: due to higher fertility rates in younger women, 80% of children with Down syndrome are born to women under 35 years of age.
I don’t think the issue lies in the access to abortion, which obviously plays a huge role in this crisis. Instead, I think the larger problem stems from society’s inability to recognize personhood and lack of knowledge of when human rights, more so when human life, begins. This issue does not just affect those with Down Syndrome, it is the way our culture reassures mothers that their child with a poor prenatal diagnosis, of any abnormality, is better left terminated. The problem lies in our culture not valuing every single life as unique and worthy.
January Event in a Box
This month we want to focus on how your group responds to the argument of fetal abnormalities and Human Rights. As a group, put together your objections to the fetal abnormality debate - here are SFLA’s objections:
The preborn child is a human being. As a human being, he or she deserves the right to Life that is protected by our constitutional law and promoted at large in society. To abort the child is to intentionallyend his/her life.
Even if the child is expected to die (during pregnancy or soon after), aborting the child will only add to the family’s grief. It forces the family to intentionally and violently end their child’s life. Instead, perinatal hospice allows parents to just be parents to their child, and enjoy the time they have with their child while providing specific comfort care to their baby.
Carrying the child to term and spending a few final moments with the child allows the mother and the family to come to terms with their child’s death and to spend a short-time with their child before his/her passing. This child’s short life will be filled with love rather than violently ended in the womb.
Have a discussion on your campus about the Iceland Down Syndrome crisis, how would you respond if the US started doing this? This will spark conversation about human rights and when life begins. RECRUITMENT!
In the Box
Fetal Abnormalities postcard
Down Syndrome Facts Flyer
Human Rights Tabletop Preview- ask your RC about bringing it to your campus
Why don’t pro-life people push birth control to stop abortion?
By Erica Smith, student at Brigham Young University in Utah
“If you really care about stopping abortion, you should spend your time and energy promoting birth control instead.”
Planned Parenthood supporters sometimes claim that the abortion chain does more to prevent abortion than any other organization, as their auxiliary services include providing birth control. A recent Planned Parenthood commercial directed by Joss Whedon depicts a girl in an alternate, PP-free universe crying over her college scholarship letter. She sets down the letter and clutches her belly, the implication being, pregnant girls can’t go to college (not true). Then, in our current universe, she walks into a Planned Parenthood, gets her birth control, and happily moves into her college dorm.
Even if birth control weren’t readily available from non-PP locations, their ability to provide it wouldn’t make up for committing a third of the nation’s abortions. Pro-lifers are often pressured to compromise our stance on the sanctity of life and substitute it with a passion for birth control. This simply isn’t feasible.
Here are five reasons that no pro-lifer can stop abortion by promoting birth control alone.
Women who seek abortions are already pregnant. No woman plans on having an abortion before she sees that positive pregnancy test. This rhetoric shames the woman for “allowing” herself to become pregnant and presents termination as the only option. Presently pregnant women don’t need birth control, they need advocates who will look on their situation with sympathy.
Birth control is fickle and can fail. Many women do use birth control and find themselves in a crisis pregnancy anyway.
Many women choose to become pregnant. The crisis doesn’t occur until later. Divorce and job loss rock a woman’s world and alter the situation in which she’d planned to raise her child. Stable, married, and economically secure women can find themselves considering abortion when their child is revealed to have disabilities, or when they find themselves carrying twins.
Abortion is legal because of birth control. Once birth control was established as an accepted norm, abortion was “needed” because accidents do happen. When you have sex with the intention of not re-producing with the partner and the birth control fails, there has to be something to “clean up the mess.”
In a crisis pregnancy, it is necessary only to eliminate the crisis, not the pregnancy.
Pro-life people care about children. We aim to create a culture of life that values all children, born and unborn.