Update: A British appeals court has overturned this decision. I’m pleased by that result, however this story is still a chilling reminder of the control a government can try to exercise over citizens.
A British court has ordered a British woman to have an abortion. The unnamed woman is in her 20s, but due to a mental disability, has the mental capacity of a child between the ages of six and nine.
The judge called the decision “heartbreaking” but also believes that the ruling is in the best interest of the mother.
According to reports, the woman wanted to keep the baby. Her mother, a former midwife, had said she would help her daughter raise the child. Yet the judge still ruled against her.
Justice Nathalie Lieven said “I am acutely conscious of the fact that for the state to order a woman to have a termination where it appears that she doesn’t want it is an immense intrusion.” Yet. That didn’t stop her. The judge argued that, despite the woman wanting the baby, she did not necessarily understand the ramifications of what it would mean to have a child.
Even if that’s the case, why is the best alternative to kill the unborn baby? The judge talks of the harm that it could do to the mother. But forcing her to undergo a painful medical procedure is ok?
A government having the authority to force an abortion upon someone is evil.
Where are this woman’s rights?
She does have a mental disability but she also wants to keep the baby. Why should that be the government’s business?
The New York Times, reporting
on the story says: “The judge noted the risks posed by the woman’s behavioral and psychological problems, and suggested that the grandmother, who vowed to care for the child, might have to leave the mother and the home at some point.”
Once again, it’s better for the child to not even live than for some possible scenario where the child is alone with its mother at some point?
And even if she couldn’t raise the child, adoption would still be an option. So why instead is abortion the only solution here?
The Times article goes on to say “The woman “would suffer greater trauma from having a baby removed,” the judge said, adding, “It would at that stage be a real baby.”
There’s prevision in this. It gets twisted as if forcing the termination of this life is the benevolent thing to do, the compassionate thing to do, the moral thing to do. It’s none of those things. This is evil.
I realize that many people who are pro-choice will wholeheartedly agree with me that this is wrong. It’s an extreme case.
That’s all well and good, but my concern is that it could be a symptom of an overall devaluing of the lives of the unborn within western societies.
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Josh Benner has a Master of Divinity from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He has served churches in Minnesota and Illinois. He enjoys writing about faith and culture. He lives with his wife Kari in St. Louis.