Thursday, July 26, 2007

Murder or "Selective Reduction"?

I linked from Al Mohler's very excellent blog (here) to an op-ed by Dan Neil, a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist who writes for the Los Angeles Times.  In this op-ed, Neil writes on a topic very personal to him: abortion.  Specifically, his wife's abortion.  While all abortions are horrible, Neil's case highlights a shocking, gruesome development in the bloody story of abortion.  You see, Neil and his wife didn't accidentally get pregnant; nay, they went to great lengths to have children.  When in vitro implantation of five embryos into his wife's womb resulted in four fetuses, they should have seen it as a gift from God.  But rather than keep all four, they decided to "selectively reduce," or kill two of their children.  They had two boys and two girls on the way; they chose to keep the girls.  

The most startling section of Neil's column is the third paragraph, which begins, "We don't feel guilty.  We don't feel ashamed.  We're not even really sad, because terminating these fetuses--at 15 weeks' gestation--was a medical imperative."  To really understand the moral gravity of this situation, imagine if the fetuses had been allowed to stay for just fifteen more weeks.  By then, it being a multi-child pregnancy, the babies would be born.  If Neil and his wife killed the boys then, we would label them murderers.  A public confession similar to the one he writes in column would inspire visceral hatred from nearly everyone.  To kill an infant with pre-meditation and no remorse would perhaps bring capital punishment upon the Neils' heads.  Yet a difference of fifteen weeks in this case makes all the difference.  Our generation faces a choice: we may continue the shockingly evil customs of our parents' generation, or we may fight for truth and justice in an unjust, unmoral world.