A recently published article argues that since abortion is largely accepted even for reasons that do not have anything to do with the fetus’ health, after-birth abortion’ (killing a newborn) should be permissible in all the cases where abortion is, including cases where the newborn is not disabled because: 1. Both fetuses and newborns do not have the same moral status as actual persons. 2. The fact that both are potential persons is morally irrelevant. 3. Adoption is not always in the best interest of actual people,
The article entitled After-birth abortion: why should the baby live? by Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva was electronically pre-published by the Journal of Medical Ethics
Catholic bioethicist John Kleinsman who is Director of The Nathaniel Centre, the New Zealand Catholic Bioethics Centre, says the prospect of deliberately killing children after birth is appalling but he agrees that if society allows abortion, there is no rational basis for forbidding the killing fo the new born.
“While I’m appalled about infanticide, I think it actually highlights, really, the problems with abortion.”
“If society allows abortions then there is no logical reason to say ‘no’ to infanticide,” he says. “This way of thinking turns children into commodities to be disposed of at will.”
The editor of the Journal of Medical Ethics has defended his actions. He said that the arguments presented were are largely not new and have been presented repeatedly in the academic literature and public fora by the most eminent philosophers and bioethicists in the world, including Peter Singer, Michael Tooley and John Harris.
“The novel contribution of this paper is not an argument in favour of infanticide – the paper repeats the arguments made famous by Tooley and Singer – but rather their application in consideration of maternal and family interests. The paper also draws attention to the fact that infanticide is practised in the Netherlands,” he said
- New Zealand Catholic Bishops’ Conference
- Journal of Medical Ethics Blogs
- NZ City.com
- Image: The Blaze