Why is it Wrong to Abort Down’s Syndrome Babies, But Not Other Babies?


The furor over Richard Dawkins’ comments about aborting babies with Down’s syndrome is sheer hypocrisy. Dawkins in his comments uses the very same moral and ethical logic of all supporters of lifestyle abortion.

“Yes, it is very civilised. These are fetuses, diagnosed before they have human feelings,” Dawkins responded. “Abort it and try again. It would be immoral to bring it into the world if you have the choice.”

This is the exact same logic used by abortion supporters who contend that…

1. A fetus isn’t a child

2. That it’s “wrong” to bring the wrong kind of baby into the world. The wrong kind of baby being one that isn’t timed properly for convenience.

What Dawkins didn’t do was try and dress up his eugenics in any kind of rhetoric about the War on Women and he didn’t even lean that heavily on religious fundamentalism. And his argument is much closer to eugenics territory.

But those are differences of style, not substance.

Richard Dawkins’ comments are mild compared to those of psychopaths like Peter Singer, PETA’s favorite ethicist who favored far broader applications of eugenics. There’s no maddened swarm denouncing him over it. But let’s skip past Singer.

The essential premise of abortion is, once we dispense with the medical issue, that personal autonomy means the right to kill an unwanted baby.

All that Richard Dawkins is doing is defining what an unwanted baby is in clearer terms. A Down’s syndrome baby is, in his mindset, unwanted. But that’s a far narrower category of unwanted than the one routinely utilized by abortion advocates who favor killing babies for economic and lifestyle reasons.

Here’s a recent op-ed from the former Communications Director of Emily’s List in the Washington Post. “Stop calling abortion a ‘difficult decision”

Once I faced reality, though, having an abortion was an obvious decision, not a difficult one. The question wasn’t “Should I or shouldn’t I?” but “How quickly can I get this over with?”

This was in the mid-1980s, when abortion was about women having control not just over their bodies but over their destinies. An unwanted pregnancy would have derailed my future, making it difficult for me to finish college and have the independent, productive life that I’d envisioned.

It’s a safe bet that WaPo/Amazon wouldn’t let Richard Dawkins run an op-ed discussing what a no-brainer aborting Down’s syndrome babies should be. But that’s a groundless double standard. Dawkins’ argument is practically moral compared to the naked sociopathic argument of the woman who was supposed to be the public voice of Emily’s List.

This kind of attitude isn’t some sort of aberration. Here’s Amanda Marcotte of Slate and The Guardian.

I like my life how it is, with my ability to do what I want when I want without having to arrange for a babysitter. I like being able to watch True Detective right now and not wait until baby is in bed…

This is why, if my birth control fails, I am totally having an abortion. Given the choice between living my life how I please and having my body within my control and the fate of a lentil-sized, brainless embryo that has half a chance of dying on its own anyway, I choose me.

That Beverly Hills 90210 bit of morality is the core of the pro-abortion argument. And if you can kill a baby to free up more time to watch True Detective, why not kill a baby for having a medical condition?

And this is where the abortion argument falls apart.

If abortion isn’t wrong or a difficult decision, then why not abort babies for having Down’s syndrome? Why not abort them because they’re the wrong gender or race?

Those examples will upset abortion supporters who at the same time find nothing wrong with aborting a baby to make it easier to finish college and live an “independent” life promoting leftist candidates for Emily’s List.

And really which is worse? Is either example really worse?

If we’re going to be killing babies, why quibble over the motive. It’s like arguing that it’s moral to shoot a man on the subway because he’s sitting in a seat that you want but not moral to shoot him because of his race or gender.

If you’re going to be a sociopath, you might as well own it.

The outrage over what Richard Dawkins tweeted is absurd hypocrisy. It amounts to arguing that it’s utterly moral to kill a baby so that you can finish college, but outrageously immoral to kill a baby because of his medical condition.

The only reason Dawkins is being attacked is because killing babies because they have a medical condition has a whiff of political incorrectness to it. While killing babies to avoid having to DVR the latest episode of True Detective is politically correct.

  • Pippilotta

    Gonna tell you something,and it´s gonna piss you off:
    Abortion is a fundamental Woman´s Right.

    and Government is in duty to ensure a safe and controlled procedure.

    We are not going to give control of our fertility and bodys back to some old frustrated patriarchs trying to enforce use into childbirth, if we don´t want it.

    Note: If Sexual Education was better, there would be much less Abortions.(Especially from minors)

    But shuuush, don´t talk to the kids about contraception.

    (The “You are killing Babies”-Argument is, as you already mentioned, is BS, because, AGAIN, we are not talking about “Babies” , but cell-clusters without any character or feelings.)

    • Webb

      Got it. Murdering babies is a fundamental woman’s right. Then you’d think someone would have the right to kill baby murders since they’re just cell-clusters without any character or feelings.

    • Pete


      Here is a little secret. There is a sweet spot for having babies. It only about 18 to 20 years long or ~16% of a person’s life span. So mess around like your are some sort of godlike playa and lose due to your own devices.

    • Pete

      I don’t fault the bronze age Greeks or other societies for exposing children. They were farming communities close to the edge.

      My take is that as we get more technically proficient and have more wealth, more is expected of us.

      Erasing a genetic mutation: Researchers reverse a liver disorder in mice by correcting a mutated gene


      I’ll update this post with an article on reversing the effects of Down syndrome. Some scientists think they can do it. As it is many Down syndrome children reach an IQ of 70 or slightly above.

      That is they human (human DNA), alive and have IQs at or above the murderers that good Leftists so want preserve.

      Save a murderer and kill a down syndrome baby when they both have or will have the same IQ? Bizarro world

    • Guest

      They are not “cell-clusters without any character or feelings”. They are human beings in another stage of development. If an unborn child can be killed because they are an “inconvenience”, then by that same logic a child who is already born can be killed as well – in fact, why not kill anyone one wants because they are an ‘inconvenience’, like disabled and elderly people? It’s unbelievable how people can pedal completely unscientific lies to justify killing their own children. Disgusting. This is what we’ve come to.

    • 12banjo

      —cell-clusters without any character or feelings—

      Speak for yourself.

      • Pete

        She or he does not know when the fetus has had cell differentiation to where there are never cells and the fetus reacts to pain.

        Probably does not want to know.

        • Pete

          “✩ Week 3: Although it is still an embryo in its definition and formation, the backbone, cardiovascular system and the brain begin to for” – buzzle

          Mother Jones dismisses Anand’s work as a one-off an outlier. Consider his statement about anesthesia and a fetal surgery.





    • I_Am_Me

      When a woman wants to have the child, they always speak about their “baby.”

      When people who are pro-choice speak of the child, they use terms like embryo, fetus or clump of cells.

      This is a whitewashing of a vile act. Own up to what is really being done here. The snuffing out of a human life.

    • http://www.stubbornthings.org NAHALKIDES

      You wish to evade the truth, that’s all, and have you come to the wrong place for that! Most FPM readers understand that a baby is human, as human as you (probably more so) and killing one is murder. By the way, we ask very little of you – only that you carry your child, which you created by your own free choice to have intercourse, to term. If you want to give it up for adoption after birth, fine – no doubt the baby will be better off with someone else for his or her mother.

    • EdWatts

      Here is your “cell-cluster” at twelve weeks’ gestation:

      • EdWatts

        Actually, it looks more like this:

        • EdWatts

          As you can see, it still looks like a tiny human. That you, just for a moment, thought that the first picture was real belies your belief that it is just a clump of cells.

  • 12banjo

    As for aborting babies because of race, can someone ask Eric Holder about the abortion clinic in Atlanta, in a black neighborhood, that he and his wife (an OB) are invested in?

    • Pete

      Please provide documentation.

      Did the Atlanta Journal constitution or some other paper run a story?

      If i have the documentation, I will go to town on the internet, but I need a credible source.

      • 12banjo

        Start search with keywords– Eric Holder Abortion –and do some reading on lifenews.com This has been something that the pro-life crowd is aware of, and I never hear about it anywhere else.

      • 12banjo
        • Pete

          They rent building space to an abortion doctor. That is not a direct link. If they refused to rent to the doctor, they could be sued and they would lose.

          Although how it works is you ask your realtor to try to find another tenant quick before you have to rent to someone like that first expresses interest in tenancy. Given their politics and the probability that they did not try to find another tenant, they are good with an abortion doctor.

          It is not a strong case. But it is good a a red cape.

          • 12banjo

            I’m guessing you don’t want to go to lifenews.com?

          • Pete

            I have been there before and will got there again to read and copy articles.

          • 12banjo

            So if you won’t rent to an abortionist, you’d lose in a lawsuit? You give up easy. I think it’d be pretty easy to get an abortionist to back off quick. Particularly if you were as powerful as the Holders.

            I don’t know what you mean by a red cape, but Holder loves him the abortions. He treats the pro-lifers as if he’d never dream of getting sued.

            And abortions of black babies are triple the rate of abortions of white babies.

          • Pete

            1. I got nothing. But as far as I understand the law, that is the way it is. As the eponymous Handel of “Handel on the Law” say “The Law is an Azz”. What is written into law is not necessarily moral, which comes as big surprise to almost nobody.

            2. Bullfighting. Keep their attention and keep maneuvering to your goal.

            3. I don’t know the exact multiple but yeah that is more or less true. Abortion should not be as casual as choosing vanilla, chocolate or strawberry as a flavor for a milkshake.

          • 12banjo

            Hm. I like that about bullfighting. Sounds like exactly what the right should be doing–playing to win.

            I don’t think you’d see a conservative complaining about having to rent to an abortionist because of fear of a lawsuit. There is such a thing as moral turpitude and I don’t see how a bad actor like this abortionist in the story could strong-arm Eric Holder into doing anything that Eric Holder did not want to do.

            I thought you might have made reference to Superman.

            When Austin, Texas Planned Parenthood was building its gigantic Abort-Mart, local contractors were pressured by their fellow church members to refuse to build the structure. It stalled the abortuary for months. I never heard of PP daring to sue anybody.

          • Pete

            If it is a large number of contractors it is death by a thousand cuts. If it is a single person or group it is easier for the opposition to out larrior them and destroy them financially.

            The ACLU or other groups could have banded together and sued the lot of them, but it would have been an epic battle. Not sure the ACLU wants to go there just yet.

            Maybe if we have another 8 years of an Obama-like president they will feel their oats, but not quite yet.

      • 12banjo

        I’m supposed to credit the corrupt AJC as the only source worth reading? And you think that rag would write any story that Holder wouldn’t like?


        • Pete

          Rush does call it the ‘Urinal and Constipation’, but I go to all news sources.

          I just go to others all the time or more often for obvious reasons.

          You got to keep surveying the landscape.

  • http://www.stubbornthings.org NAHALKIDES

    Daniel is right – Dawkins is no worse than the standard Leftist in the abortion-on-demand crowd. Of course, he’s no better either, and they’re all reprehensible, which was his point.

  • wileyvet

    “This was in the mid-1980s, when abortion was about women having control not just over their bodies but over their destinies. An unwanted pregnancy would have derailed my future, making it difficult for me to finish college and have the independent, productive life that I’d envisioned.” So keep your legs shut. But no, so many irresponsible women making horrendous choices in the men they fling around with, then if they get knocked up, no big deal, Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit. Next day, right as rain, no guilt, no shame and right back in the sack with another loser. Rinse and repeat. And this is somehow a RIGHT?

  • pfbonney

    “It’s like arguing that it’s moral to shoot a man on the subway because he’s sitting in a seat that you want but not moral to shoot him because of his race or gender.”

    Ya gotta love it!

    Great one, Daniel!

  • kafir4life

    If liberals want abortions, let them.
    The very definition of “darn shame” is that Stanley Ann Dunham didn’t meet up with a young Dr. Gosnell in early to mid 1961 and employ his professional services. Imagine a world where she had.

  • joan

    It’s the same kind of hypocritical outrage I’ve seen among feminists regarding the widespread aborting of female babies in cultures where sons are favored over daughters. Somehow it’s worse to kill a baby just because she’s a girl, but it’s okay to kill her if she’s simply an inconvenience.