Tuesday, March 13, 2012

What is a "wrongful birth?"

Meanwhile in the wacky world of abortion rights.... now we have a couple in Portland, Oregon who were just awarded $2.9 million in a "wrongful birth" lawsuit. Yes, that's right, wrongful birth.

They had pre-screening done and the results stated that the child was normal. They say that if they had known she had Down Syndrome they would have aborted her. Thus - wrongful birth.

The family's lawyer tells us that this is a very difficult time for the family and that they love the child very much - the $2.9 is ostensibly to provide for the extra expenses that a child with Down Syndrome would apparently cost over the course of their life.

I don't know how high-functioning this little girl is, but could you imagine the discussion if she ever becomes aware of this case. This is one of those crazy stories that is bound to find its way to a reality show or movie screen near you.

I know the temptation is to laugh this off as an extreme case of people, including a judge, who have lost their common sense, but this case is reflective of what is happening on many different levels in our culture. This has everything to do with rights and responsibilities. Not to ention the fact that some 90% of pregnancies of Down Syndrome children end in abortion.

We live in an age of individual rights, not basic rights, mind you, like "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" kind of rights. I have no issue with those foundational cornerstones of Western Civilization. No, now we're talking about the "right" to have the perfect baby. We see in this case what happens when this artificial "right" is enforced.

What people don't understand is that every time a "right" is granted, a corresponding responsibility is created. If you have a right to have a child that is born without defect, someone, in this case the lab, has the responsibility to see that it happens. If you have a "right" to have an abortion, someone has the responsibility to provide that for you as well.

So now we have the debate over whether or not the freedom of conscience is trumped by the freedom of choice. Should a pro-life nurse be forced to participate in an abortion? If not,what if we don't have enough people willing to participate? Does that right go away? Should it be a right after all?

Even more importantly, what happens when right claims conflict? Shouldn't the right to life trump all other rights? Should the children who survive abortion attempts (and some do), be able to sue their parents and doctors for attempted murder and any physical injuries resulting?

The problem is that we've stopped using our brains and we're allowing our emotions to rule us. We're allowing artificial rights to be granted based upon our changing preferences, rather than referring back to the source. I do appreciate what the founding fathers of the United States wrote in the preamble to the Declaration of Independence: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

The fact that this is self-evident indicates that it's not a uniquely American concept, but is for all mankind. What are those unalienable rights that God has endowed us with? One thing I know for sure, it doesn't include the right to kill the weakest among us.

I've included a short video below that I thought you might find interesting.




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