Why Is Down Syndrome Abortion More Acceptable Than Gendercide Or Aborting Baby Girls?

By Amanda Moore, Parent Herald March 06, 04:00 am

Moms today have the option to screen if the baby they are carrying in the womb has Down syndrome. Some countries actually encourage the abortion of babies with this genetic disability in an effort to render its extinction but observers note of the existence of a double standard between Down syndrome abortion versus gendercide.

A disabilities rights group fighting against Down syndrome abortion questioned this fact in its petition via Stop Discriminating Down. The group pointed out that there is a lot of furor over gendercide but not about terminating pregnancies with Down syndrome. What makes one situation different than the other when it's still about killing babies?

Gendercide, like Down syndrome abortion, is still selective abortion. It happens in families who favor baby boys over baby girls. If Down syndrome abortion is rampant in European countries, gendercide still happens in some Asian countries like China, India, Pakistan and Vietnam, according to Economist.

Over the years, however, gendercide has slowly diminished and its denouncement has gotten louder as more parents now recognize daughters can help the family financially and economically. Suffice to say, there is progress in the fight against killing baby girls even if it has taken some countries centuries to recognize a daughter's value.

The fight for babies with Down syndrome still needs to gain traction. For some, the killing of these babies is considered more acceptable because families won't have to be burdened with caring for a child with a disability.

Meanwhile, the group's petition to save Down syndrome babies comes as the Nuffield Council on Bioethics recently issued a warning for pregnant women regarding screenings. It cited that non-invasive prenatal testing provides only "estimates" of the baby's condition inside the mom's womb. It doesn't actually ascertain that the growing baby has a genetic problem.

The implication of this warning is vital to women. As pregnant moms rely on screenings to decide whether they should undergo an invasive and sometimes risky procedure, they should be aware some screening results can be incomplete.

"We are concerned that some women are not being supported well enough to make informed decisions," Dr. Louise Bryant of the council said, according to BBC. Pregnant moms and their doctors are encouraged to do follow up tests as well as get more advice and support on genetic diseases before they decide on abortion as the final solution.

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