I have a hard time understanding this

The recent call by the UN urging Latin American countries hit by the mosquito-borne Zika virus to lift restrictions on abortion for pregnant women who have contacted the virus and whose pre-born children may be at risk for birth defects has opened up some really good questions.

I understand that the Church says no to abortion under all circumstances.

I cannot understand why.

Life is precious. That I get.

There are exceptions. The double effect is one which, when applied to treating a critically ill mother, has the potential of killing the unborn “unintentionally”. While it may be “unintentional”, it is undertaken with the certainty that the foetus will die. The Church deems that while this would be unfortunate, there is no moral evil here.

What I cannot understand is why the Church would think that it is morally permissible to allow a child to be born terribly retarded (whether it’s caused by the Zika, or by any other defect). How can it be the moral thing to allow a child to be born terribly deformed, mentally and physically, and have to suffer for her entire life?

Are any of us in a position to tell someone else that he or she would be better off dead than with the physical or intellectual handicap he or she was born with?

Do you honestly think you answered the question?

Why do we have the right to make that call?

And to be honest, tonight more than I’ve ever felt before, I feel like this question is seriously offensive to people suffering with handicaps, as it implies we did wrong by them by not terminating/euthanizing them.

Maybe I’m just in a mood.

No.
No ,you don’ t.

ALL human life is precious. Yet you seem to be implying with your question that a life with a disability or suffering is not precious enough, so it’s not worth living. This implies that you think some human life is precious, and some is not. Is that really what you believe?

Now… where do we draw the line? Who gets to decide how much “potential suffering” is too much? Should every human being with a defect or suffering of any kind be killed off? (If that was the case, we’d ALL be wiped out by now.)

Consider the past few years of medical advances, as well: you’re assuming that the future holds no hope for better treatments or cures or social acceptance. Yet, even if those advances do not happen, why does a person have to suffer their whole life because of a deformity? Is it, perhaps, because we human beings don’t have enough compassion for them, and treat them as less than human? So isn’t that implying that they should die because we have a moral defect? Oops, we’d better kill off everyone with a moral defect, too! Well, there goes the neighborhood!

Seriously, though, there can be blessings in struggles. There can even be hope and joy in suffering.

If God desires to give someone the gift of life, who are we to decide that it’s not a “good enough” gift for that person? I think I’d rather trust that God knows more than I do about that person, as well as what the future holds. :wink:

I am not owed 75 healthy years, or 25 healthy years, or even 25 healthy minutes. Each moment that I can spend with my loved ones is a gift from God, and I would not want to deny those few moments to anyone.

Ranting off on an emotional tangent is not how we become proficient in explaining our doctrines.

You cannot get offended when people ask questions. It’s no wonder we’re losing our credibility.

Well said.

 Maybe it wasn ' t precisely a tangent what followed and I did not write.
  I can get offended as it pleases me. Who says we can t ? The "bright guys " who would discard me for IQ or physical fitness ? Give me a break...

Don t count me.for apologetics. That is obvious.

Wrong forum for me. I see now.

I think that in this case, the person advocating abortion seems to be doing it for humane reasons. That’s where the UN might be coming from. So it’s not that they mean to devalue life, but the push is driven more by a desire to end suffering, or rather, prevent suffering.

Yes, this is THE slippery slope.

… and there we have it. As Catholics, we understand that God is sovereign and that we must have faith in His plans. We also understand the value of suffering and that there just is a higher reason, one that we cannot fathom, let alone see.

BUT we must understand that if you’re not Catholic, and more so if you’re atheist, the alleviation of suffering IS a very humane thing to do. When he euthanizes an injured animal, actually, as when we do as well, it is a mercy killing to prevent the animal from suffering more. The person without God sees only this aspect. He cannot see any other reason. He’s not doing it out of malice and may not even be with the intention of promoting abortions in general. He just wants to ease suffering. The logic seems simple, they’re suffering; let’s see if we can prevent it. We must see where they are coming from and address them on that level without getting offended so easily and coming across as so indignant.

So if we want people to understand why we don’t condone abortions, and in a similar vein, contraceptives, we have got to be able to explain it in a way that makes sense to them.

The failure to do so will make us look like fanatics who seem to be more focused on our dogmas than on being merciful and/or logical. We’ll look like our ideology has overwhelmed our intellect. Actually, that has already happened.

What I’m looking for are good reasons not to abort without pulling the religion card. We’ve managed to do that when challenging ‘gay marriage’, although not enough are eloquent enough to properly express reasons for rejecting it.

So far, like I said, I cannot see it without pulling the religion card … and there’s just no point going on about why that card isn’t effective. We have to press on on a different tact.

We do not have the right to take the life of the innocent. You wouldn’t kill a retard after he was born to save him from his suffering in life, so why should we kill him before he is born?

That’s why we have the natural law. With it, you can prove many things including the existence of God with logic and reason. But you have to have a formed conscience. An erroneous conscience is that which believes that what is wrong is right, or viceversa.

One of the precepts of the natural law is “do not kill” (and no, I’m not talking about the commandments). Objectively speaking, killing is morally right in form of defense like self -defense, war or dead penalty. They are just reasons. Whomever you are killing in defense, pose a great threat to you, the Country or society. When is killing morally wrong, objectively speaking? When you kill the life of an innocent. And that’s called murder. That’s why killing innocent babies or murdering babies is always, always morally wrong and evil. No matter the mother’s reason, the baby in the womb is innocent, and therefore, it is morally wrong, evil and a murder to abort.

What are you suggesting, exactly? That we should kill mentally and/or physically handicapped children in the name of avoiding suffering? I hope that I am misunderstanding your question.

I agree entirely. Why allow anyone that needs our love and protection in a special way to be allowed to be born. However, we just don’t know how seriously affected children are until they are born. Some genetic defects found in an amniocentesis turn out to be fairly benign such as a cleft palate. No, it is far better to wait until they are born and kill them then.This overcomes the Church’s immoral objection to aborting those we label as defective. But then it makes it murder. Hell, who will rid me of these blasted moral absolutes that get in the way of true compassion found in destroying the unwanted. It is downright immoral to allow people to be a burden on our medical system and our public benefit systems isn’t it?. No, we must also look at the commercial value of these babies also. Once dead we can harvest their organs, those that are up to scratch, and do good that way. It will also take a lot of pain from the life of the parents and the rest of the family as otherwise they would be forced to look after the waste of space for the rest of its life.
On the other hand, some people who haven’t moved in understanding the lack of intellect behind some of their church’s doctrines would look at the Pope’s Apostolic Letter SALVIFICI DOLORIS for some insight into the value of human suffering. But these people would be playing the religion card so they are completely out of touch.
The golden years of eugenics in Europe was of course under the Third Reich and much of your wise priorities can trace their philosophy back to these sages.
I look around and see much human suffering in our aged care system; our hospitals and our day to day lives. I would suggest you start to triage our priorities across the board and we can save a lot of misery, money and can extinguish nearly all the love we need to offer others to allow us to be better people as citizens, much less as sons of the Most High God.

I agree entirely. Why allow anyone that needs our love and protection in a special way to be allowed to be born. However, we just don’t know how seriously affected children are until they are born. Some genetic defects found in an amniocentesis turn out to be fairly benign such as a cleft palate. No, it is far better to wait until they are born and kill them then. It is downright silly to allow people to be a burden on our medical system and our public benefit systems. No, we must look at the commercial value of these babies also. Once dead we can harvest their organs, those that are up to scratch, and do good that way. It will also take a lot of pain from the life of the parents and the rest of the family as otherwise they would be forced to look after the waste of space for the rest of its life.
On the other hand, some people who haven’t moved in understanding the lack of intellect behind some of their church’s doctrines would look at the Pope’s Apostolic Letter SALVIFICI DOLORIS for some insight into the value of human suffering. But these people would be playing the religion card so they are completely out of touch.
The golden years of eugenics in Europe was of course under the Third Reich and much of your wise priorities can trace their philosophy back to these sages.
I look around and see much human suffering in our aged care system; our hospitals and our day to day lives. I would suggest you start to triage our priorities across the board and we can save a lot of misery, money and can extinguish nearly all the love we need to offer others to be better people as citizens, much less as sons of the Most High God.

This was on the BBC yesterday. It’s about a young man with microcephaly who certainly seems to be enjoying his life. Let’s not try to put a value on life - I’ll bet there are many able-bodied people in this world who don’t get as much pleasure out of being alive as this man does.

bbc.co.uk/news/health-35500306

The accurate account of the event which changed the life of** Dr. Jerome Lejeune** - the father of modern genetics ; as told by his daughter Clara Lejeune Gaymard (green bolds mine):

From :Remembering Jerome Lejeune; National Catholic Register, 2011

"He was a scientist; he made a big discovery; he became the first geneticist in France, very young, the top of the newspapers, advisor to the president; and one day, he decided, ‘I cannot accept abortion,’ not because he is Christian, but because he knows as a geneticist that life starts at conception. And he had to say it. He had to protect the ones whom they want to kill, who are too young to protect themselves.

So he started this fight as a scientist, saying, ‘I have to tell the truth. I’m not judging anyone; I’m not saying anything else besides the truth of the science, and I have to testify about that.’ ”

Do you remember that when you were growing up?

"I remember it so clearly. I was 10 years old, and, one day, he came home for lunch. The day before, on television, there was a movie about a family where a woman had a child with Down syndrome, and she wanted to abort, and she couldn’t do it then.

After, there was a debate about abortion of the diseased children, and a boy came to his consultation with his mom, and he was crying, and my father said, 'Why are you crying?” 'And his mother said, ‘He saw the movie, and I couldn’t stop him crying,’ and then he jumped in my father’s arms, and he was only 10 with Down syndrome. He said, ‘You know, they want to kill us. And you have to save us, because we are too weak, and we can’t do anything.’ And [my father] came back home for lunch, and he was white, and he said, ‘If I don’t protect them, I am nothing.’ That’s how it started.

And then his career came down. He didn’t have money for his research. He was like a pariah, and so on, but he accepted that because he thought he was doing that which was his duty."

smh.com.au/world/what-this-mother-of-two-girls-with-microcephaly-has-to-say-about-zika-scare-20160203-gml7bi.html

Read the article above for a beginners understanding of the joy that a disabled child can bring, and also the life they can experience.

If parents or guardians do a good job, as their humanity must demand, there is no reason the disabled child, including those with micro-encephaly, cannot experience the most important aspects of life: Joy, love and company of family and friends, food, comfort, the wonder of creation. Even people who don’t believe in God must acknowledge this.

John 9:1-3
As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him."

An excerpt from “21 Thoughts” by Dr. Jerome Lejeune

" Again and again we see this absolute misconception of trying to defeat a disease by eliminating the patient! It’s ridiculous to stand beside a patient and solemnly say, ‘Who is this upstart who refuses to be cured? How dare he resist our art? Let’s get rid of him!’ Medicine becomes mad science when it attacks the patient instead of fighting the disease. We must always be on the patient’s side, always."

When one doesn’t believe that God is good and all that He allows is good, and they do not believe in the Kingdom that lasts forever, then they think it is expedient and good to abort.

Believers in the infinite goodness of God are aware that compassion and loving care comes from the Lord, and it is beneficial when it is given to the one who has a “defect”, and to those who show compassion and loving care.

We live in a fallen world, and this life is passing away quickly.

God’s love is the greatest power in the world.

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