Killing Babies No Different From Abortion Experts Say

N&P: Discuss governments, nations, politics and recent related news here.

Moderators: SCRawl, Thanas, D.Turtle, PeZook, Edi, K. A. Pital

User avatar
General Mung Beans
Jedi Knight
Posts: 853
Joined: 2010-04-17 10:47pm
Location: Orange Prefecture, California Sector, America Quadrant, Terra

Killing Babies No Different From Abortion Experts Say

Postby General Mung Beans » 2012-03-02 07:31pm
Killing babies no different from abortion, experts say
Parents should be allowed to have their newborn babies killed because they are “morally irrelevant” and ending their lives is no different to abortion, a group of medical ethicists linked to Oxford University has argued.
A group of ethicists has argued that killing young babies is no different from abortion

By Stephen Adams, Medical Correspondent

1:38PM GMT 29 Feb 2012

The article, published in the Journal of Medical Ethics, says newborn babies are not “actual persons” and do not have a “moral right to life”. The academics also argue that parents should be able to have their baby killed if it turns out to be disabled when it is born.

The journal’s editor, Prof Julian Savulescu, director of the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, said the article's authors had received death threats since publishing the article. He said those who made abusive and threatening posts about the study were “fanatics opposed to the very values of a liberal society”.

The article, entitled “After-birth abortion: Why should the baby live?”, was written by two of Prof Savulescu’s former associates, Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva.

They argued: “The moral status of an infant is equivalent to that of a fetus in the sense that both lack those properties that justify the attribution of a right to life to an individual.”

Rather than being “actual persons”, newborns were “potential persons”. They explained: “Both a fetus and a newborn certainly are human beings and potential persons, but neither is a ‘person’ in the sense of ‘subject of a moral right to life’.
Related Articles

“We take ‘person’ to mean an individual who is capable of attributing to her own existence some (at least) basic value such that being deprived of this existence represents a loss to her.”

As such they argued it was “not possible to damage a newborn by preventing her from developing the potentiality to become a person in the morally relevant sense”.

The authors therefore concluded that “what we call ‘after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled”.

They also argued that parents should be able to have the baby killed if it turned out to be disabled without their knowing before birth, for example citing that “only the 64 per cent of Down’s syndrome cases” in Europe are diagnosed by prenatal testing.

Once such children were born there was “no choice for the parents but to keep the child”, they wrote.

“To bring up such children might be an unbearable burden on the family and on society as a whole, when the state economically provides for their care.”

However, they did not argue that some baby killings were more justifiable than others – their fundamental point was that, morally, there was no difference to abortion as already practised.

They preferred to use the phrase “after-birth abortion” rather than “infanticide” to “emphasise that the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus”.

Both Minerva and Giubilini know Prof Savulescu through Oxford. Minerva was a research associate at the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics until last June, when she moved to the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics at Melbourne University.

Giubilini, a former visiting student at Cambridge University, gave a talk in January at the Oxford Martin School – where Prof Savulescu is also a director – titled 'What is the problem with euthanasia?'

He too has gone on to Melbourne, although to the city’s Monash University. Prof Savulescu worked at both univerisities before moving to Oxford in 2002.

Defending the decision to publish in a British Medical Journal blog, Prof Savulescu, said that arguments in favour of killing newborns were “largely not new”.

What Minerva and Giubilini did was apply these arguments “in consideration of maternal and family interests”.

While accepting that many people would disagree with their arguments, he wrote: “The goal of the Journal of Medical Ethics is not to present the Truth or promote some one moral view. It is to present well reasoned argument based on widely accepted premises.”

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, he added: “This “debate” has been an example of “witch ethics” - a group of people know who the witch is and seek to burn her. It is one of the most dangerous human tendencies we have. It leads to lynching and genocide. Rather than argue and engage, there is a drive is to silence and, in the extreme, kill, based on their own moral certainty. That is not the sort of society we should live in.”

He said the journal would consider publishing an article positing that, if there was no moral difference between abortion and killing newborns, then abortion too should be illegal.

Dr Trevor Stammers, director of medical ethics at St Mary's University College, said: "If a mother does smother her child with a blanket, we say 'it's doesn't matter, she can get another one,' is that what we want to happen?

"What these young colleagues are spelling out is what we would be the inevitable end point of a road that ethical philosophers in the States and Australia have all been treading for a long time and there is certainly nothing new."

Referring to the term "after-birth abortion", Dr Stammers added: "This is just verbal manipulation that is not philosophy. I might refer to abortion henceforth as antenatal infanticide."

Unless this is a stealth parody by pro-lifers along the lines of Swift's "A Modest Proposal" I find it amazing that professional "ethicists" at one of the world's most prestigious universities have moral standards fit more for the days of Caesars and I find it equally incredible that any journal was willing to publish it.
El Moose Monstero: That would be the winning song at Eurovision. I still say the Moldovans were more fun. And that one about the Apricot Tree.
That is growing on me.
Thanas: It is one of those songs that kinda get stuck in your head so if you hear it several times, you actually grow to like it.
General Zod: It's the musical version of Stockholm syndrome.

User avatar
Losonti Tokash
Sith Devotee
Posts: 2915
Joined: 2004-09-29 03:02pm
Location: Lincoln, NE

Re: Killing Babies No Different From Abortion Experts Say

Postby Losonti Tokash » 2012-03-02 07:33pm

"Sell drugs, run guns, nail sluts, and fuck the law." -Thomas Jefferson

User avatar
Posts: 28473
Joined: 2004-06-26 07:49pm

Re: Killing Babies No Different From Abortion Experts Say

Postby Thanas » 2012-03-02 07:38pm

Whoever says "education does not matter" can try ignorance
A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
My LPs

Return to “News and Politics”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Imperial528 and 3 guests