Again and again we must repeat that intentional elective abortion is the intervention to *cause* death, without medical necessity.
A common pro-abortion argument is that no one cares about miscarriages, so we must not really care about the unborn. If all this fuss and bother meant anything, we’d be working just as hard at preventing miscarriage as we do at preventing death due to other causes in “real children.”
Of course, every child is a “real child.” But, as one of my instructors who is a Christian ethicist puts it, the burden (pain and suffering) can be so great that there is no way to bear it. How do you relieve suffering if there is and never will be an ability to understand it? Or even when the cortical “wiring” is not there to mediate and mask it, as in a more mature child?
The welfare of each child is urgent. There’s no doubt about that.
With current techniques and medicine, intervening in cases of severe chromosomal defects is more akin to keeping someone on ventilator and pacemaker after total brain death. The person has ceased to function as an organism. Resuscitation is needed or the care is futile. In these cases, non-intervention is the best “action.”
We routinely treat women who tend to have repeat miscarriages with progesterone. There are techniques for cervical “stitches” to prevent women with weak or irritable openings to their wombs. Serial ultrasound is used to track and verify early pregnancy vs. “blighted ovum” and tubal pregnancy. Each of these are equivalent to vaccines and antibiotics we use for formerly devastating childhood diseases.
Researchers are working on an “artificial womb.” More than likely, others are working on ways to correct trisomy, fragile X, and all of the other chromosomal defects. Unfortunately, the notion that children aren’t children until we feel that they are “persons” permeates science training and research.
There is a discussion about the subject of abortion vs. treating as a result of prenatal testing at The Center for Bioethics and Culture. See “Common Ground” on that page.