Friday, May 11, 2007

Life Links 5/11/07

Dean Barnett posts the thoughts of a neonatalogist whose daughter has Down Syndrome.
The obsession with "perfection" in pregnancies is, in my view, a result of many factors. To be fair to obstetrical providers, some of it has to do with legal considerations. More important, however, is that we have lost the ability to see the value in imperfection. Only perfection matters. Most of us deny our own imperfections (we are human) and cannot appreciate that a child, no matter how "different", is a gift. In an age in which many children are raised by day cares, nannies or public schools, children have become a possession, albeit an important one, but a possession nonetheless. Why shouldn't "it" be perfect?

Francis Kissling has a long post at the RH Reality Check blog republished from Salon deriding Kennedy's decision in Gonzales v. Carhart and explaining why she didn't take any media calls on this procedure for 10 years.
We all get it: Abortion is not an unmitigated good; it is better to not need one; if needed, it is better to have one early; and it is a very serious situation when one needs one when the fetus is more developed.
The question of why abortion isn't an unmitigated good isn't answered.

Biotechnology company Geron claims they will be starting trials on human patients with spinal cord injuries using cells created from embryonic stem cells in 2008. It appears they already believe this trial won't be a huge success and agree their trial won't include individuals with long-term spinal injuries. I found this quote amusing -
Hans Kierstead, head of the embryonic stem cell team at UC Irvine, was worried about the high level of public expectation. "I find it unfair that people demand so much from such a young field," he said.
Hmmm... I wonder why people (who were told miraculous cures were right around the corner) would demand so much.

National Review has posted the text of Mitt Romney's speech to the Massachusetts Citizens for Life dinner last night.
When I first ran for office, I considered whether this should be a personal decision or whether it should be a societal and government decision. I concluded that I would support the law as it was in place — effectively, a pro-choice position.

And I was wrong.

The Roe v. Wade mentality has so cheapened the value of human life that rational people saw human life as mere research material to be used, then destroyed. The slippery slope could soon lead to racks and racks of living human embryos, Brave New World-like, awaiting termination.

What some see as a mere clump of cells is actually a human life. Human life has identity. Human life has the capacity to love and be loved. Human life has a profound dignity, undiminished by age or infirmity.

A woman in England has been convicted for aborting her unborn child in the 7th month of pregnancy.

This article in International Herald Tribune discusses how the demographics of who gets abortions in China is shifting from married women to single women.
A recent survey of 8,846 single and married women at 10 hospitals in Beijing found that 36 percent had had more than one abortion within six months.....

"All the time, my colleagues say they are seeing young girls who have had five or six abortions," said one doctor who has performed abortions at a public hospital in eastern China for nearly two decades. "Many people consider abortion as a contraception method, especially the young girls. They just leave, and after a few months, they are back again. Sometimes when I'm around the city in shopping malls, I recognize the girls."

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