Euthanasia discussion

This discussion was created from comments split from: Abortion.
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  • mousethief wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    BroJames wrote: »
    I think, Colin Smith, you are stretching the usual meaning of eugenics past its breaking point. Wikipedia’s take on the word seems fairly mainstream
    a set of beliefs and practices that aim to improve the genetic quality of a human population, historically by excluding people and groups judged to be inferior and promoting those judged to be superior

    But a woman deciding to abort a Down Syndrome fetus isn't making a decision about the genetic quality of the human population. She's making a decision about her own circumstances. If that's the definition you want to go with, then calling her decision "eugenics" is stretching the stated meaning past its breaking point.

    I think the original point wasn’t that the woman is guilty of eugenics, but that the state is, in the way it approaches Down’s syndrome. For example, in the UK using the word ‘risk’, rather than ‘chance’ when talking about Down’s in literature, making testing the default position (despite the small possibility of damage during the test). And in Denmark, the policy being to totally eliminate Down’s altogether.

    As was linked to earlier, Sally Phillips, as a mother of a Down’s boy and a woman of faith, has a lot of insightful stuff to say about this, about what society values, and about the positives of having a child with Down’s.

    I think the line is far thinner than you think. Once you start slinging around accusations of "eugenics" then you are saying some abortions are morally tainted1, and you have removed from the woman the right to make decisions about her own body.

    1And tainted with a very big bad and scary word.

    Ok, I can see the scary word thing... I would hesitate in using it to describe the UK system, though we do have big problems with the way Down’s is represented during pregancy.

    But if you fill literature and pregnancy consultation with biased information and scaremongering then what is happening is you have removed from the woman the right to make informed decisions about her own body.

    And given that the Danish policy clearly has the goal to eradicate a whole group of people from existing in society through misinformation and, well, essentially propaganda, resulting in coerced abortions... well, I’m not sure there is a word for that other than eugenics. From here:
    Because Down syndrome has been singled out as a choice that can be ‘prevented’ by abortion, it is has lead to the current mentality where parents of children with Down syndrome are increasingly seen as irresponsible and anti-social. So while Danish women are free to abort, practically they have a moral and social duty to birth a ‘healthy’ child.

    The Danish government meanwhile, hides behind ‘choice’ and ‘women’s autonomy’. Because it is not a new concept that propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting on their own free will.

    Downs sufferers are no more a "group of people" than are paraplegics who've lost the use of their legs following road accidents and I assume you're not against measures to prevent road accidents on the grounds that it will lead to fewer paraplegics.

    Attempting to eliminate debilitating and life-long medical conditions from society is a good and noble thing to do. Yes, it uses similar tools to those that are used in eugenics, but its aim is a million miles away from attempting to create a race of blond Übermenschen.
  • mousethief wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    BroJames wrote: »
    I think, Colin Smith, you are stretching the usual meaning of eugenics past its breaking point. Wikipedia’s take on the word seems fairly mainstream
    a set of beliefs and practices that aim to improve the genetic quality of a human population, historically by excluding people and groups judged to be inferior and promoting those judged to be superior

    But a woman deciding to abort a Down Syndrome fetus isn't making a decision about the genetic quality of the human population. She's making a decision about her own circumstances. If that's the definition you want to go with, then calling her decision "eugenics" is stretching the stated meaning past its breaking point.

    I think the original point wasn’t that the woman is guilty of eugenics, but that the state is, in the way it approaches Down’s syndrome. For example, in the UK using the word ‘risk’, rather than ‘chance’ when talking about Down’s in literature, making testing the default position (despite the small possibility of damage during the test). And in Denmark, the policy being to totally eliminate Down’s altogether.

    As was linked to earlier, Sally Phillips, as a mother of a Down’s boy and a woman of faith, has a lot of insightful stuff to say about this, about what society values, and about the positives of having a child with Down’s.

    I think the line is far thinner than you think. Once you start slinging around accusations of "eugenics" then you are saying some abortions are morally tainted1, and you have removed from the woman the right to make decisions about her own body.

    1And tainted with a very big bad and scary word.

    Ok, I can see the scary word thing... I would hesitate in using it to describe the UK system, though we do have big problems with the way Down’s is represented during pregancy.

    But if you fill literature and pregnancy consultation with biased information and scaremongering then what is happening is you have removed from the woman the right to make informed decisions about her own body.

    And given that the Danish policy clearly has the goal to eradicate a whole group of people from existing in society through misinformation and, well, essentially propaganda, resulting in coerced abortions... well, I’m not sure there is a word for that other than eugenics. From here:
    Because Down syndrome has been singled out as a choice that can be ‘prevented’ by abortion, it is has lead to the current mentality where parents of children with Down syndrome are increasingly seen as irresponsible and anti-social. So while Danish women are free to abort, practically they have a moral and social duty to birth a ‘healthy’ child.

    The Danish government meanwhile, hides behind ‘choice’ and ‘women’s autonomy’. Because it is not a new concept that propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting on their own free will.

    Downs sufferers are no more a "group of people" than are paraplegics who've lost the use of their legs following road accidents and I assume you're not against measures to prevent road accidents on the grounds that it will lead to fewer paraplegics.

    Attempting to eliminate debilitating and life-long medical conditions from society is a good and noble thing to do. Yes, it uses similar tools to those that are used in eugenics, but its aim is a million miles away from attempting to create a race of blond Übermenschen.

    Most folk with Down's aren't "sufferers" any more than anyone else. They may suffer from how others treat them. Can you not see a distinction between trying to prevent an individual having a condition and killing that individual to replace them with another? I don't think anyone would complain if you could make Down's less likely to occur, but that's not what we're talking about.
  • DoublethinkDoublethink Shipmate
    edited August 2020
    Well that’s goes back to the nub of the thing though doesn’t it - at what point does The fertilised egg become a human being ? If you are a breech delivery, are you human once you have one foot out of your mother’s body ? Or only the whole of your head, or the whole of your body, or after the cord is cut ? Or at some point before ?

    My view, fwiw, is that that a fertilised egg has potential to become a human being, a potential that increases in ?strength? the longer it continues. I’d want a much better reason to abort a pregnancy at eight months than one - and indeed late abortions are rare and I think that reflects most people’s default moral understanding.

    But I do not think that, this child will have a survivable congenital disability Means their potential life would not be worth living.

    I also think this a moral question that can’t be usefully regulated by legislation.

    @Colin Smith some people with Downs Syndrome get university degrees - are they good enough for you ?
  • mousethief wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    BroJames wrote: »
    I think, Colin Smith, you are stretching the usual meaning of eugenics past its breaking point. Wikipedia’s take on the word seems fairly mainstream
    a set of beliefs and practices that aim to improve the genetic quality of a human population, historically by excluding people and groups judged to be inferior and promoting those judged to be superior

    But a woman deciding to abort a Down Syndrome fetus isn't making a decision about the genetic quality of the human population. She's making a decision about her own circumstances. If that's the definition you want to go with, then calling her decision "eugenics" is stretching the stated meaning past its breaking point.

    I think the original point wasn’t that the woman is guilty of eugenics, but that the state is, in the way it approaches Down’s syndrome. For example, in the UK using the word ‘risk’, rather than ‘chance’ when talking about Down’s in literature, making testing the default position (despite the small possibility of damage during the test). And in Denmark, the policy being to totally eliminate Down’s altogether.

    As was linked to earlier, Sally Phillips, as a mother of a Down’s boy and a woman of faith, has a lot of insightful stuff to say about this, about what society values, and about the positives of having a child with Down’s.

    I think the line is far thinner than you think. Once you start slinging around accusations of "eugenics" then you are saying some abortions are morally tainted1, and you have removed from the woman the right to make decisions about her own body.

    1And tainted with a very big bad and scary word.

    Ok, I can see the scary word thing... I would hesitate in using it to describe the UK system, though we do have big problems with the way Down’s is represented during pregancy.

    But if you fill literature and pregnancy consultation with biased information and scaremongering then what is happening is you have removed from the woman the right to make informed decisions about her own body.

    And given that the Danish policy clearly has the goal to eradicate a whole group of people from existing in society through misinformation and, well, essentially propaganda, resulting in coerced abortions... well, I’m not sure there is a word for that other than eugenics. From here:
    Because Down syndrome has been singled out as a choice that can be ‘prevented’ by abortion, it is has lead to the current mentality where parents of children with Down syndrome are increasingly seen as irresponsible and anti-social. So while Danish women are free to abort, practically they have a moral and social duty to birth a ‘healthy’ child.

    The Danish government meanwhile, hides behind ‘choice’ and ‘women’s autonomy’. Because it is not a new concept that propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting on their own free will.

    Downs sufferers are no more a "group of people" than are paraplegics who've lost the use of their legs following road accidents and I assume you're not against measures to prevent road accidents on the grounds that it will lead to fewer paraplegics.

    Attempting to eliminate debilitating and life-long medical conditions from society is a good and noble thing to do. Yes, it uses similar tools to those that are used in eugenics, but its aim is a million miles away from attempting to create a race of blond Übermenschen.

    Most folk with Down's aren't "sufferers" any more than anyone else. They may suffer from how others treat them. Can you not see a distinction between trying to prevent an individual having a condition and killing that individual to replace them with another? I don't think anyone would complain if you could make Down's less likely to occur, but that's not what we're talking about.

    I don't regard any foetus or embryo as human, let alone an individual
  • Well that’s goes back to the nub of the thing though doesn’t it - at what point does The fertilised egg become a human being ? If you are a breech delivery, are you human once you have one foot out of your mother’s body ? Or only the whole of your head, or the whole of your body, or after the cord is cut ? Or at some point before ?

    My view, fwiw, is that that a fertilised egg has potential to become a human being, a potential that increases in ?strength? the longer it continues. I’d want a much better reason to abort a pregnancy at eight months than one - and indeed late abortions are rare and I think that reflects most people’s default moral understanding.

    But I do not think that, this child will have a survivable congenital disability Means their potential life would not be worth living.

    I also think this a moral question that can’t be usefully regulated by legislation.

    @Colin Smith some people with Downs Syndrome get university degrees - are they good enough for you ?

    Indeed, that is the nub of it. But regardless of what other people's morality might be, the only person whose morality is applicable to the situation is the woman who is carrying the foetus/embryo. In essence, then, I agree with you that this a moral question that can’t be usefully regulated by legislation but argue that it must be the individual's choice.

    That some people with Downs get university degrees is besides the point. The question is whether anyone has a right to impose a Down's sufferer on parents who would rather have a fully healthy child.
  • What makes you think someone with Downs Sydrome is not healthy ?
  • What makes you think someone with Downs Sydrome is not healthy ?

    I said fully healthy. Fully functioning on a physical and cognitive level. If Downs sufferers were fully healthy then they would require no more care than those born with green eyes or red hair and would be as capable as the average fully-healthy individual.
  • @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.
    Not to society there isn't. Not in any objective sense. A person born without legs or one who has had them amputated are functionally the same. It is quite possible that the person born without might even cost society less as they will have adapted early.

  • Colin SmithColin Smith Suspended
    edited August 2020
    lilbuddha wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.
    Not to society there isn't. Not in any objective sense. A person born without legs or one who has had them amputated are functionally the same. It is quite possible that the person born without might even cost society less as they will have adapted early.

    But if the lack of legs was diagnosed during pregnancy would you support someone who chose to abort?

    The point is an embryo of foetus is not a person so how we deal with a foetus or embryo with a condition is completely different from how we deal with a person with the same condition.

    You may disagree with my position but that disagreement is irrelevant because abortion is about freedom of choice and the choice they make is based on a person's individual circumstances and individual values.
  • What makes you think someone with Downs Sydrome is not healthy ?

    I said fully healthy. Fully functioning on a physical and cognitive level. If Downs sufferers were fully healthy then they would require no more care than those born with green eyes or red hair and would be as capable as the average fully-healthy individual.

    Then you need to read up on the social model of disability.
    I have a problem with the social model of disability. What makes a disability is the deviation from normal development that causes he need for assistance to perform normal tasks.
    What make that a problem is societal framework.
    Being in a wheelchair is a disability. What it needn't be is perceived as lesser.
    I like the presenters² on The Last Leg. They do not pretend that they are not disabled or that it does not affect their lives, but they also do not let that inhibit who they are.¹ Society doesn't need to pretend that people don't have disabilities, but decide that doesn't make people less valued.

    ¹Granted, they are privileged by wealth and fame.
    ²Especially poor Josh. Imagine being born a ginger!
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.
    Not to society there isn't. Not in any objective sense. A person born without legs or one who has had them amputated are functionally the same. It is quite possible that the person born without might even cost society less as they will have adapted early.

    But if the lack of legs was diagnosed during pregnancy would you support someone who chose to abort?

    The point is an embryo of foetus is not a person so how we deal with a foetus or embryo with a condition is completely different from how we deal with a person with the same condition.

    You may disagree with my position but that disagreement is irrelevant because abortion is about freedom of choice and the choice they make is based on a person's individual circumstances and individual values.
    I support a woman's right to choose, her reasons are her own.
    That said, choosing to terminate based on imperfections is eugenics.
    The other factors, such as ability to cope, change how this applies in individual cases.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.
    Not to society there isn't. Not in any objective sense. A person born without legs or one who has had them amputated are functionally the same. It is quite possible that the person born without might even cost society less as they will have adapted early.

    The difference is in the perception of the individual. For someone born able who loses their legs, a wheelchair feels ‘disabling’ because they knew what life was like before. To someone born without legs, a wheelchair can feel hugely enabling because it gives them movement and freedom that they’ve never known before.

    If you’ve never had legs, you can’t miss ‘em. Many people born with impairments don’t feel disabled because they’ve never known what it’s like to be ‘able’. But they do feel disabled by society because of lack of opportunity, prejudice, and infrastructure that doesn’t support them through lack of thought or awareness.

    I don’t have wings, I can’t fly. It’d be cool if I could fly, but I don’t miss having wings, because I’ve never had any, and society isn’t structured so that wings are necessary for everyday life.

    The patronising response from ‘able’ people is to tell them that they should feel disabled, that they’re missing out, that they should feel less of a human because of their lack of leg use, or their autism, or their learning difficulty, or their Down’s syndrome.

    The enlightened response is to listen and digest, and to learn that there is more to life and existence than having arms, or legs, or only two #21 chromosomes - and to realise that by having unique experiences and insights, those with disabilities can actually bring something unique to society and teach us more about being human. So rather than looking to eradicate those people from society, we should be treasuring, supporting and learning from them.
  • GwaiGwai Epiphanies Host
    edited August 2020
    Gwai wrote: »
    @Colin Smith You have already been asked to stop it with the ablest language in Epiphanies. I am saying it again. I will not say it a third time. "Downs sufferers" is absolutely out of bounds.

    Gwai,
    Epiphanies Host

    I have only just seen that post and it's the first time I have even heard of "ableist language".

    What would be the preferred term bearing in mind I support attempts to eradicate the condition through genetic screening and the termination of pregnancies.

    Second time at the very least since I used it in my previous host post. The phrase "people with Downs syndrome" would be fine regardless of your views, which are entirely irrelevant to what term you use. If you have more discussion of this, take it to the Styx please.
  • Gwai wrote: »
    Gwai wrote: »
    @Colin Smith You have already been asked to stop it with the ablest language in Epiphanies. I am saying it again. I will not say it a third time. "Downs sufferers" is absolutely out of bounds.

    Gwai,
    Epiphanies Host

    I have only just seen that post and it's the first time I have even heard of "ableist language".

    What would be the preferred term bearing in mind I support attempts to eradicate the condition through genetic screening and the termination of pregnancies.

    Second time at the very least since I used it in my previous host post. The phrase "people with Downs syndrome" would be fine regardless of your views, which are entirely irrelevant to what term you use. If you have more discussion of this, take it to the Styx please.

    Ah. I did not see your previous comment.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    What makes you think someone with Downs Sydrome is not healthy ?

    I said fully healthy. Fully functioning on a physical and cognitive level. If Downs sufferers were fully healthy then they would require no more care than those born with green eyes or red hair and would be as capable as the average fully-healthy individual.

    Then you need to read up on the social model of disability.
    I have a problem with the social model of disability. What makes a disability is the deviation from normal development that causes he need for assistance to perform normal tasks.
    What make that a problem is societal framework.
    Being in a wheelchair is a disability. What it needn't be is perceived as lesser.
    I like the presenters² on The Last Leg. They do not pretend that they are not disabled or that it does not affect their lives, but they also do not let that inhibit who they are.¹ Society doesn't need to pretend that people don't have disabilities, but decide that doesn't make people less valued.

    ¹Granted, they are privileged by wealth and fame.
    ²Especially poor Josh. Imagine being born a ginger!

    Yeah, it’s not a perfect model, and should really be used alongside the medical model, not in its place.

    But it has an important role in challenging the paradigms of people who have never lived with a disability, and not considered the world from the perspective of people with different abilities than themselves.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.
    Not to society there isn't. Not in any objective sense. A person born without legs or one who has had them amputated are functionally the same. It is quite possible that the person born without might even cost society less as they will have adapted early.

    The difference is in the perception of the individual. For someone born able who loses their legs, a wheelchair feels ‘disabling’ because they knew what life was like before. To someone born without legs, a wheelchair can feel hugely enabling because it gives them movement and freedom that they’ve never known before.

    If you’ve never had legs, you can’t miss ‘em.
    I disagree. I am extremely short and have never been tall, but I can see the advantages of being average sized not to mention tall. In some shops, I cannot retrieve merchandise from the top shelves without assistance or creativity. Most of my friends are well above average height and even walking with them I observe the advantage they have.

    Many people born with impairments don’t feel disabled because they’ve never known what it’s like to be ‘able’. But they do feel disabled by society because of lack of opportunity, prejudice, and infrastructure that doesn’t support them through lack of thought or awareness.
    Support from society make things better, but it doesn't change abilities. Re-framing it as society making the disability doesn't change anything. Educating society to change itself so that able ≠ valuable, does.
  • The difference is in the perception of the individual. For someone born able who loses their legs, a wheelchair feels ‘disabling’ because they knew what life was like before.

    I have a friend who lost the use of his legs due to a motorcycle accident when he was 20. (In his words, "I was a young idiot".) I can promise you that it's not his wheelchair that he finds disabling - it's the fact that he can't move his legs.

    With his wheelchair, his adapted car, and reasonable accommodations from his employer (a lower workbench, no stairs), he leads a full, happy, normal life. He'd still rather be able to walk, though.

    Another friend is colourblind, and, as you would expect, has been from birth. On the scale of disabilities, colourblindness is pretty mild, and everyone forgets about it until someone's giving a presentation and starts talking about "the red curve" and he interrupts to ask which of the curves displayed is the red one. It doesn't impair his life significantly, but in his words "of course it's a bloody disability - I can distinguish fewer colours than normal people". If it could be fixed, so he had normal vision, he'd fix it. He doesn't see colourblindness as part of his identity at all.

    Autism, I think, is very different, because being autistic is a fundamental part of an autistic person's personality. It's not surprising that most autistic people don't want to be "cured", because that would make them into a completely different person - whereas you could "cure" my colourblind friend, and he'd be exactly the same person, with better vision.

  • @lilbuddha, see my comment above about the model not being perfect and that it should be used alongside the medical model, and the comment about “it would be nice to have wings”. My “if you’ve never had legs you can’t miss em” wasn’t intended as totally literal, but as thought-provoking.

    For example, talking to a friend who’s never had the use of his legs, his experience is that able-bodied people often make out that he should feel worse about it than he does, that he must feel really sad all the time that he can’t walk. Whereas, his response is more ‘meh, legs would be nice, as wings would be nice, sure.’
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    I disagree. I am extremely short and have never been tall, but I can see the advantages of being average sized not to mention tall. In some shops, I cannot retrieve merchandise from the top shelves without assistance or creativity. Most of my friends are well above average height and even walking with them I observe the advantage they have.
    I understand your pain. Shopping for clothes, trousers and jeans especially, always fills me with murderous rage towards the normally proportioned.
  • @Leorning Cniht, yes, I think you’re making the same point I was trying to make. There is no hard and fast rule about how anyone should experience disability, whether from birth or not, even if there are trends.

    But anyway, I’ve spoken for people with disabilities enough. They don’t need me to speak for them other than to stand up for them when necessary. Better to hear their voices than mine.
  • amyboamybo Shipmate
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.

    In the case of Downs we are dealing, in my opinion, with a condition that can be eliminated with no moral or practical cost by medically intervening before the person with the condition even exists.

    Why? Why should people with Downs Syndrome not exist?!
  • Colin SmithColin Smith Suspended
    edited August 2020
    amybo wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.

    In the case of Downs we are dealing, in my opinion, with a condition that can be eliminated with no moral or practical cost by medically intervening before the person with the condition even exists.

    Why? Why should people with Downs Syndrome not exist?!

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.
  • amybo wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.

    In the case of Downs we are dealing, in my opinion, with a condition that can be eliminated with no moral or practical cost by medically intervening before the person with the condition even exists.

    Why? Why should people with Downs Syndrome not exist?!

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.
    By extension of that logic, you would not exist as you are not perfect.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.
    By extension of that logic, you would not exist as you are not perfect.

    I'm not employing logic. I am employing pragmatism.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    I have a problem with the social model of disability. What makes a disability is the deviation from normal development that causes he need for assistance to perform normal tasks.
    What make that a problem is societal framework.
    Being in a wheelchair is a disability. What it needn't be is perceived as lesser.
    I like the presenters² on The Last Leg. They do not pretend that they are not disabled or that it does not affect their lives, but they also do not let that inhibit who they are.¹ Society doesn't need to pretend that people don't have disabilities, but decide that doesn't make people less valued.

    ¹Granted, they are privileged by wealth and fame.
    ²Especially poor Josh. Imagine being born a ginger!

    I also have a problem with the Social Model of Disability and I have to teach it on a health theory module. A critical realist approach (as suggested by many disabled academics such as Tom Shakespeare) is better, IMO, as it recognises that impairment is a real lived experience which disables people alongside the disabling societal barriers. The social model was also written with wheelchair users in mind and doesn’t fit in well with other disabilities, including mental health challenges and chronic ill health. As someone with a disability, the social model has always annoyed me, I find it disempowering to move all the emphasis on to society and away from disabled people. I’m currently exploring the emancipatory model of disability as part of my research into the experiences of students with mental health challenges.

    On the subject of foetal testing for Downs, I also refused the tests and explained there was no point as I wouldn’t be having an abortion. But I didn’t experience any conflict with my midwife over this, she just made sure I knew what the test was about and she accepted my decision without my feeling under any pressure. I did get the impression I was unusual though.
  • amybo wrote: »
    @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.

    In the case of Downs we are dealing, in my opinion, with a condition that can be eliminated with no moral or practical cost by medically intervening before the person with the condition even exists.

    Why? Why should people with Downs Syndrome not exist?!

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.

    Down’s is more prevalent the older you get, which means there are very real practical costs and considerations, especially for women who have struggled to conceive for years and may struggle to ever get pregnant again (and will also be that little bit older again if they do). And given that women are on average having children later in life, these are not uncommon considerations.
  • lilbuddha wrote: »

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.
    By extension of that logic, you would not exist as you are not perfect.

    I'm not employing logic. I am employing pragmatism.
    Personally, I would evaluate your position as an illogical one hiding behind pragmatism, so I would agree.
    However, pragmatism as an evaluative path to a decision does use logic.*

    *a particular method of reasoning or argumentation:
  • lilbuddha wrote: »
    lilbuddha wrote: »

    Because in my view people are better off not having Downs Syndrome and it can be eliminated at no moral or practical cost by aborting fetuses that test positive for it.
    By extension of that logic, you would not exist as you are not perfect.

    I'm not employing logic. I am employing pragmatism.
    Personally, I would evaluate your position as an illogical one hiding behind pragmatism, so I would agree.
    However, pragmatism as an evaluative path to a decision does use logic.*

    *a particular method of reasoning or argumentation:

    Yes, pragmatism requires some sort of logic. However, pragmatism is essentially self-serving, as in what is convenient for me, how do I wish the world to be, and so on, therefore the logical element is curtailed. Further, because the nature of what serves my interests and convenience is somewhat varied the logic employed in the services of one particular instance might be at odds with the logic employed in another. The only thing that must be consistent is that my self-interest and convenience are always met.

    And I am saying that slightly tongue in cheek even if it is essentially how I live my life.

    Logic by itself is much more open-ended and has a habit of biting the person using it.
  • @Colin Smith, I’m short-sighted. I’m technically disabled because of my full lack of vision. But in practise, I’m not disabled because I wear glasses.

    No one thinks of short sighted people as disabled because they are sufficiently supported by society that their impairment has little impact on their life.

    Now, extend that thinking to wheelchair users, and think about ramps and stairs.

    This is the point that the social model of disability makes, that society plays a big part in ‘disabling’ people, alongside specific impairments.

    I also wear glasses, reading glasses in my case. And I'm blind in one eye. Small print is annoying but neither problem stops me functioning. I also fully support wheelchair access and things like that for people who have suffered injuries. But there is a difference between those who have become 'disabled' in some way and those who will be born with a condition.

    In the case of Downs we are dealing, in my opinion, with a condition that can be eliminated with no moral or practical cost by medically intervening before the person with the condition even exists.

    If the person with Downs doesn't exist it's amazing we're able to detect that they have it.

    The intervention happens at the fetal stage. A foetus is not a person.

    In your opinion. You're defining personhood to facilitate your desire to eliminate people with Down's syndrome.

  • The intervention happens at the fetal stage. A foetus is not a person.

    In your opinion. You're defining personhood to facilitate your desire to eliminate people with Down's syndrome.

    Everything on this thread is a matter of opinion. And yes, that a foetus is not a person is my opinion and it's based on sound reasoning. Further, given that abortion is a matter of choice I'm not sure how the decision to abort or not abort can be made outside of the relevant person's opinion.

    And I'm not defining personhood to facilitate the elimination of Down's Syndrome. My definition makes perfect rational sense to me and if it helps facilitate guilt-free abortion on demand then great.

    My point is that regardless of whether anyone approves, disapproves, or loathes my position, a pregnant woman who wants an abortion has the right to make her choice based on whatever position she chooses.

  • The intervention happens at the fetal stage. A foetus is not a person.

    In your opinion. You're defining personhood to facilitate your desire to eliminate people with Down's syndrome.

    Everything on this thread is a matter of opinion. And yes, that a foetus is not a person is my opinion and it's based on sound reasoning. Further, given that abortion is a matter of choice I'm not sure how the decision to abort or not abort can be made outside of the relevant person's opinion.

    And I'm not defining personhood to facilitate the elimination of Down's Syndrome. My definition makes perfect rational sense to me and if it helps facilitate guilt-free abortion on demand then great.

    My point is that regardless of whether anyone approves, disapproves, or loathes my position, a pregnant woman who wants an abortion has the right to make her choice based on whatever position she chooses.

    Are you talking about a moral or a legal right?

    Perhaps you could share your reasoning on personhood, as bald assertion is not particularly conducive to discussion. To my mind it seems reasonable to say that the ball of cells at 3 weeks gestation is not a person, but equally reasonable that at 39 weeks the being in the womb is a person as, in almost all respects, they're the same as they would be if they'd been birthed 12 hours previously.
  • Colin SmithColin Smith Suspended
    edited August 2020

    Are you talking about a moral or a legal right?

    Perhaps you could share your reasoning on personhood, as bald assertion is not particularly conducive to discussion. To my mind it seems reasonable to say that the ball of cells at 3 weeks gestation is not a person, but equally reasonable that at 39 weeks the being in the womb is a person as, in almost all respects, they're the same as they would be if they'd been birthed 12 hours previously.

    Moral and legal: her body, her choice. It's quite possible that the woman may at some point regret having an abortion and may even suffer some form of psychological damage from her choice and that must be made clear to her at the time of the abortion. Bit imo, what is done to the embryo/foetus is of no more moral significance than what is done to a tumour.

    Personhood. Okay, I think I have stated this elsewhere but here goes.

    A person is someone with memories, experiences, wit, empathy, imagination, personality, and so on. In other words they have, albeit in young children only in rudimentary form, those attributes which we ascribe to humans. In fact, imo to be human is to be a person.

    Now, from that it's clear that, imo, a new-born is also not human, however my position has no practical relevance because an embryo that has reached that stage is wanted by its parents and they are willing to nurture it until it becomes a person.

    It's also clear that I do not regard an adult who is in a persistent vegetative state or has advanced dementia as a person. I'm fine with that. My mother 'died' in 2013 when Alzheimer's robbed her of her identity and memories. Her body took another seven years to die but she was already dead inside.
  • ArethosemyfeetArethosemyfeet Shipmate
    edited August 2020
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.
  • Now, from that it's clear that, imo, a new-born is also not human, however my position has no practical relevance because an embryo that has reached that stage is wanted by its parents and they are willing to nurture it until it becomes a person.
    I’m afraid that’s not always the case. But I guess the police should have just left said newborn in the bush where it was found, or chucked it in the nearest skip?
  • Penny SPenny S Shipmate
    IN observing people with Downs I have noticed that the 46 chromosomes which are the normal provision are apparent and the person is clearly a member of their family with the features you would expect of that family. They are not a separate group who can be lumped together under the outdated label "mongols". (Incidentally, one of the women who attended on my birth spotted my large tongue and vouchsafed to my mother her diagnosis that I might be a mongol. I do not have Downs.)
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    I would support the right of the parents to make that decision. Supporting someone's right to make a decision is not the same as supporting the decision they make.
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.
  • Now, from that it's clear that, imo, a new-born is also not human, however my position has no practical relevance because an embryo that has reached that stage is wanted by its parents and they are willing to nurture it until it becomes a person.
    I’m afraid that’s not always the case. But I guess the police should have just left said newborn in the bush where it was found, or chucked it in the nearest skip?

    Not at all. I've rescued animals that were in need so why would I expect anyone to not rescue a baby?
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    I would support the right of the parents to make that decision. Supporting someone's right to make a decision is not the same as supporting the decision they make.

    At what point does this supposed right expire?
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    I would support the right of the parents to make that decision. Supporting someone's right to make a decision is not the same as supporting the decision they make.

    At what point does this supposed right expire?

    I don't know is the simple answer. Taking each case by itself is probably the sensible answer.

    I don't see why I should have to come to a logical position that covers all eventualities when, here at least, the belief that human life is 'special' compared to the life of other animals and human life begins in the womb is illogical.
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    I would support the right of the parents to make that decision. Supporting someone's right to make a decision is not the same as supporting the decision they make.

    At what point does this supposed right expire?

    I don't know is the simple answer. Taking each case by itself is probably the sensible answer.

    I don't see why I should have to come to a logical position that covers all eventualities when, here at least, the belief that human life is 'special' compared to the life of other animals and human life begins in the womb is illogical.

    What's illogical about human life beginning in the womb?
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?

    I am indeed suggesting that active methods should be available to those parents who do not wish to raise a child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. I am not saying they should use them, I'm saying they should be available. Not everyone wants to make the choice you did.
  • Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    I would support the right of the parents to make that decision. Supporting someone's right to make a decision is not the same as supporting the decision they make.

    At what point does this supposed right expire?

    I don't know is the simple answer. Taking each case by itself is probably the sensible answer.

    I don't see why I should have to come to a logical position that covers all eventualities when, here at least, the belief that human life is 'special' compared to the life of other animals and human life begins in the womb is illogical.

    What's illogical about human life beginning in the womb?

    I've already stated my position on what constitutes human life.
    A person is someone with memories, experiences, wit, empathy, imagination, personality, and so on. In other words they have, albeit in young children only in rudimentary form, those attributes which we ascribe to humans. In fact, imo to be human is to be a person.

    Now, from that it's clear that, imo, a new-born is also not human, however my position has no practical relevance because an embryo that has reached that stage is wanted by its parents and they are willing to nurture it until it becomes a person.

    It's also clear that I do not regard an adult who is in a persistent vegetative state or has advanced dementia as a person. I'm fine with that. My mother 'died' in 2013 when Alzheimer's robbed her of her identity and memories. Her body took another seven years to die but she was already dead inside.

    To be human is to be a person: the two are inseparable.
  • If I understand the argument about personhood in this context, it is that if the fetus is a person, and if it's wrong to kill a person, then abortion is wrong. This sidesteps the fact that we're actually ok with killing persons in certain situations. War, self-defense, policing, capital punishment, for example. And we're ok with the collateral deaths of innocent persons in those circumstances.

    I prefer to look at the abortion debate as an argument over who has the power to make life and death decisions in our society. We have given our leaders the authority to kill literally thousands of persons to gain land and resources. We give police the power to kill innocent persons with impunity. Numerically, the persons with life-and-death power over other persons in our society are usually men; the institutions of power are dominated by men. That is the context in which we are debating the morality of an individual woman making a life and death decision about her own body.

    It sure seems like the morality of killing persons depends on who is doing the killing, and for what reasons. So it's strategic to kill thousands of Iraqis to control oil supply, but it's immoral for a woman to weigh up the impact of another child on her family, added expenses and responsibilities, lost income, health risks, etc. and choose to terminate a pregnancy.



  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?

    I am indeed suggesting that active methods should be available to those parents who do not wish to raise a child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. I am not saying they should use them, I'm saying they should be available. Not everyone wants to make the choice you did.

    @Colin Smith the only choice I have made is to support my daughter in what life has thrown at her. This child is now a much loved member of our family but the decision was as you say quite rightly for the parents. Please do not attribute things to me which I have not attributed to myself.
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?

    I am indeed suggesting that active methods should be available to those parents who do not wish to raise a child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. I am not saying they should use them, I'm saying they should be available. Not everyone wants to make the choice you did.

    @Colin Smith the only choice I have made is to support my daughter in what life has thrown at her. This child is now a much loved member of our family but the decision was as you say quite rightly for the parents. Please do not attribute things to me which I have not attributed to myself.

    Apologies. I did not intend to attribute anything to you. I understood you to be opposed to (as in would seek to prevent) any parent choosing to terminate a full-term child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. If that is not the case then we agree that any decision after the birth is solely that of the parents.
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?

    I am indeed suggesting that active methods should be available to those parents who do not wish to raise a child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. I am not saying they should use them, I'm saying they should be available. Not everyone wants to make the choice you did.

    @Colin Smith the only choice I have made is to support my daughter in what life has thrown at her. This child is now a much loved member of our family but the decision was as you say quite rightly for the parents. Please do not attribute things to me which I have not attributed to myself.

    Apologies. I did not intend to attribute anything to you. I understood you to be opposed to (as in would seek to prevent) any parent choosing to terminate a full-term child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. If that is not the case then we agree that any decision after the birth is solely that of the parents.

    I don't think the word "terminate" is used about children who are born alive. There are I know clear guidelines about what is allowed ethically/ medically at this point. You are right to deduce that I would not make that choice myself but I find it interesting and concerning that you had concluded that I would seek to impose my views on someone else.
    What I would and have tried to do in situations of unwanted pregnancy or traumatic births is to act with compassion and kindness towards the people involved.
  • MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    MrsBeaky wrote: »
    Given that some disabilities of equal or greater effect that Down's are only detectable after birth (or occur during labour), does it follow that you would support euthanasia of disabled infants as you don't consider them people?

    A while back this appeared to be @Colin Smith 's position when discussing my grandson's situation on another thread. Little Beaky was a child who sustained catastrophic brain damage due to mistakes made during his birth, thereby leaving him severely disabled. Knowing that he could not stay in NICU forever, his parents eventually decided to do what the hospital suggested about "letting nature take its course" and said their goodbyes but he did not die when taken off the life support machines and they then began the long journey of caring for him. They believe he is a person but as far as I recall Colin Smith would suggest otherwise.
    One of many observations I could make about Little Beaky would be that he is greatly loved and gives back love to all those who choose to engage with him.

    It's still the case that I would not regard "Little Beaky" as a person but as I have said repeatedly, people are free to make choices based on their values and degree of commitment.

    Your last comment could be said of a pet cat or dog and we do not regard cats and dogs as people.

    @Colin Smith You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here.
    What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? Or are you suggesting that active measures should be taken in these situations to kill full-term children unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities?

    I am indeed suggesting that active methods should be available to those parents who do not wish to raise a child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. I am not saying they should use them, I'm saying they should be available. Not everyone wants to make the choice you did.

    @Colin Smith the only choice I have made is to support my daughter in what life has thrown at her. This child is now a much loved member of our family but the decision was as you say quite rightly for the parents. Please do not attribute things to me which I have not attributed to myself.

    Apologies. I did not intend to attribute anything to you. I understood you to be opposed to (as in would seek to prevent) any parent choosing to terminate a full-term child unexpectedly born with/ acquiring disabilities. If that is not the case then we agree that any decision after the birth is solely that of the parents.

    I don't think the word "terminate" is used about children who are born alive. There are I know clear guidelines about what is allowed ethically/ medically at this point. You are right to deduce that I would not make that choice myself but I find it interesting and concerning that you had concluded that I would seek to impose my views on someone else.
    What I would and have tried to do in situations of unwanted pregnancy or traumatic births is to act with compassion and kindness towards the people involved.

    As, I said, apologies for misunderstanding. It was your comment "You mention choice but I don't see how it applies here. What choice was available other other than to love and care for a child who did not die as expected? " that led me to believe you did not think any other choice could be made in the circumstances. I now see that you were speaking for yourself rather than stating a position that should apply to everyone.

    I agree "terminate" was the wrong word. I should have said euthanase.
This discussion has been closed.