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  #11  
Old 02-20-2014, 07:51 AM
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Oh absolutely. Hawking's mind could run circles around my feeble little intellect. His body may be disabled but that hasn't stopped him from revolutionizing what we know about the Universe. He rocks, in my primitive volcabulary.
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  #12  
Old 02-21-2014, 05:41 AM
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I'm not a mind reader so of course I can't be certain, but I suspect that people who choose to abort due to disability usually do it more because they don't feel capable of raising the child themselves, and don't want the guilt of putting them in the system. There's nothing unethical about knowing your limitations and choosing to live within them. People who think in terms of "what's best for the child" are already thinking about their child, the birth being taken for granted. Anyone who prioritizes what's right for another person is more likely to put the child's needs above their own and give them the best chance at life possible.

Lots of assumptions and generalizations there, but just my $0.02 worth of intuition.
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Old 02-21-2014, 12:46 PM
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Hawking led a normal life well into his 20s.
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  #14  
Old 02-21-2014, 09:13 PM
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Well I kind of use Hawking as a thought experiment. "What if his mother could have known what his life would be like -- without knowing of the rich accolades he'd receive from the academic world." If she knew that he'd start to increasingly languish physically as an adult, would she consider sparing him of that hardship by forgoing his birth? and what if the disease he'd have was going to start crippling him well before adulthood? What if it'd start crippling him before he was even born? Without knowing what a genius he'd also turn out to be, and how much he'd contribute to Science, how would a mother make the call, and if she aborted, would she (and the whole world) wonder what we had all missed out on?

Departing well beyond the realms of what I could call a "Hawking experiment," let's say a mother could see into the future of her unborn child and know that at the age of three, a car accident would take both of hir legs, both eyes, and horribly disfigure hir (for life)? Worse yet, what if this tragedy was to happen when xe was ten or twelve, well old enough to have longing memories of what it was like "to be whole?" If the only way to spare that child of that tragic destiny was to forgo giving birth and the mother could somehow know this, would abortion become a rational option?

How many of us have seen the 1985 film "Mask" (Cher, Sam Elliot, Eric Stoltz)? The main character (Roy L. "Rocky" Dennis) has craniodiaphyseal dysplasia which worsens as he gets older. It not only makes his face shocking to the casual observer, it also gives him terrible migraines and such (and I think the severity and frequency of the pain he suffers increases over the years as well). He died young. If a woman was pregnant with such a child, and knew what sort of physical and emotional (social stigma) pain he'd have to face, would she be justified in aborting to spare the child? Having watched the movie, of course, we see Rocky as a kid who loved life, faced his condition bravely, and moved and inspired those who loved and surrounded him. The point is, knowing you're going to have a kid who's going to face terrible obstacles in hir life, doesn't make the choice to abort or not so simple.

Of course SchrodingersCat is quite right in saying that a pregnant woman must take into account her own limitations, and if she's not able to raise the afflicted child, who will raise the child and how will that affect the quality of life that child can live?

Many of these questions stray from the original topic of, "What if it's a child who'll be born (mildly?) (severely?) disabled," but I think they are related. The choice to go through with a pregnancy with any child who is "doomed" to face much hardship in life is a choice of incalculable complexity. If aborted, who knows what suffering a child might be spared? but if carried to term, who knows what richness that same child might experience and share with and in the world? We cannot pretend to be certain to know. Again we need that alternate-future time machine, to interview the child in the was-born future and get hir thoughts on the matter. Alas that consent can't be had from an unborn child, yea or nay.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:03 AM
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Default the fetus..

I guess I respect women who abort because they know their limitations. Taking care of a child is grueling and a disabled child, more so.

I do question women who abort based on who the baby will be versus what their limitations are. Meaning many women abort because they are not happy with the child's condition. This extends far, far beyond conditions that need constant care.

London, to my knowledge, fetuses with Downs do not have testing so the parents will be prepared. Doctors test for Downs because they assume people will abort. I read 85-90% of Downs fetuses are aborted. A friend just tested positive for Downs and her doctor was shocked that she would not abort. I heard this story again and again. She they decided to adopt the baby out. There are organizations specifically for babies with Downs. She had her choice on many, and ultimately kept the baby.

I don't think the problem is with abortion, per se. I think it's ableist attitudes that lead to these abortions and the arguments for abortion I have read are that a woman should be not critized no matter what. But, what if a woman got pregnant by a Japenese man and was racist? Would it be unfair to discuss that?
I don't see much difference between that and fetuses with mild disabilities.
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  #16  
Old 02-24-2014, 02:00 AM
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That is nonsense. The rationale for definitive chromosome testing is to enable the parents to make informed decisions about all aspects of the pregnancy, that includes whether to continue the pregnancy but also where and how to give birth with what professionals present.

I've cared for women who have had aborted for fetal anomaly and those who have for social reasons. The former has always been like caring for someone who has had a stillbirth and lost a wanted child. There is guilt, feeling useless, grieving, holding the baby, all that.
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  #17  
Old 02-24-2014, 02:32 AM
bofish bofish is offline
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Default Articles on Downs

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/09/us...pagewanted=all

This is actually a positive article : http://www.theatlantic.com/health/ar...ndrome/254869/

This is my understanding of Downs. It has gone through a period where people are expected to abort by their doctors. Even my friend whose son was born 10 months ago went through this experience. There are many similar stories relayed in Andrew Solomon's Far From the Tree. I specifically remember one story about the doctor telling a woman with a newborn "Your child is a magaloid!" I am not arguing that no families want to prepare for early intervention. However, until very recently, Downs has been thought of a think that should be "wiped out" through abortion. This is reflected in the 80-90% abortion rate. However, as the second article says because public perception is changing, the abortion rate is changing.

Here's another : http://www.theguardian.com/society/2...icineandhealth

Last edited by bofish; 02-24-2014 at 02:45 AM.
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  #18  
Old 02-24-2014, 05:20 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bofish View Post
But, what if a woman got pregnant by a Japenese man and was racist? Would it be unfair to discuss that?
How would that happen, exactly? If she's racist against Japanese, then she wouldn't have sex with a Japanese man. She would have to be raped, in which case race is the least of her reasons.

Quote:
the arguments for abortion I have read are that a woman should be not critized no matter what.
I don't think I've read any arguments "for abortion." The arguments are for the right and access to safe, legal abortion. Giving women the right to have abortions does not equate to giving them freedom from judgement and criticism for choosing abortions due to careless behaviour or prejudiced attitudes. I also agree with the right to free speech, including my right to call someone an irresponsible twat for using abortion as primary birth control.

More than anything, the reason I'm pro-choice is that abortions are going to happen whether they're safe and legal or not. Do I think that some women who choose abortions are being irresponsible and selfish? Absofuckinglutely. But I would rather they be irresponsible and selfish and healthy than irresponsible and selfish and bleeding to death in some dentist's back room.
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  #19  
Old 02-24-2014, 05:49 AM
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This. Furthermore-no one but the woman making the choice REALLY knows. Limitations of ability can be invisible to outsiders. You don't know if my situation is safe for a new baby or not. You can only assume. It is IMPOSSIBLE for anyone but me to know if I am able to care for a child and even my own knowing is limited because shit could change on the dime.
It is all well and good for EVERYONE to have an opinion about what they are willing to do. But it isn't anyone's place to decide what someone else should do. Even if someone decides to have an abortion after testing-no one but they know the TRUE reason they made that choice. It is all assumption. Assume... Ass....
Quote:
Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat View Post
How would that happen, exactly? If she's racist against Japanese, then she wouldn't have sex with a Japanese man. She would have to be raped, in which case race is the least of her reasons.



I don't think I've read any arguments "for abortion." The arguments are for the right and access to safe, legal abortion. Giving women the right to have abortions does not equate to giving them freedom from judgement and criticism for choosing abortions due to careless behaviour or prejudiced attitudes. I also agree with the right to free speech, including my right to call someone an irresponsible twat for using abortion as primary birth control.

More than anything, the reason I'm pro-choice is that abortions are going to happen whether they're safe and legal or not. Do I think that some women who choose abortions are being irresponsible and selfish? Absofuckinglutely. But I would rather they be irresponsible and selfish and healthy than irresponsible and selfish and bleeding to death in some dentist's back room.
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  #20  
Old 02-24-2014, 08:45 AM
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I wrote this about abortion some time ago.

Any child with a difference needs extra and specific parenting to overcome the unique obstacles to them achieving their full potential. Only an individual can decide if they have the resources to provide that bit of extra, and yes, few may decide the obstacles a facial disfigurement presents arent something they can support a child in overcoming. This is especially relevant in countries that do not have adequate health and social services for everyone, or even try to have a system that looks like it's meant to provide that comprehensive care.

Last edited by london; 02-24-2014 at 09:25 AM.
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