CHAPTER 40 TESTS FOR BIRTH DEFECTS
American Life League

The total destruction of one or two normal fetuses to protect against the possible birth of one abnormal fetus, under current law in the United States, is not legally objectionable.

Willard Gaylin, M.D., and Marc Lappe, Ph.D., the Hastings Institute.[1]

Anti-Life Philosophy.

This state will forever be poor, if its population surpasses the means by which it can subsist ... Do you not prune the tree when it has overmany branches? But it is not at the moment that, when man reaches maturity, one must destroy him in order to reduce population. It is unjust to cut short the days of a well-shaped person; it is not unjust, I say, to prevent the arrival in the world of a being who will certainly be useless to it.

                                                                     The Marquis de Sade.[2]

Abortion should remain legal because of the high probability of severe birth defects. We don't want to clutter up society with vegetables and hopeless cripples who are a drain on all of us. We eventually would like to 'breed out' serious genetic defects, following Margaret Sanger's philosophy.

The Eugenics Mentality.

If the cripples are going to die, let them do so, to decrease the surplus population.

George C. Scott as Scrooge, while discussing Tiny Tim's frail health, in the movie "A Christmas Carol."

Kill the Healthy Along with the Unhealthy. William Gaylin's quote (shown at the beginning of this chapter) is profoundly disturbing. Not only is this so-called 'ethicist' advocating the destruction of handicapped preborn babies, but, in his mad rush to exterminate the unhealthy, he sees no problem with discarding one or two (or three? or ten?) perfectly healthy preborns in the process.

Another bioethicist, John Fletcher (no relation to Joseph), touches the loveless soul of the anti-life mentality as he makes the connection between abortion and infanticide; "Most parents in our society, if given the choice, would prefer the abortion of an affected fetus to a sick child who requires anything but the most trivial care. This preference is likely to become more definite with rapidly changing attitudes towards abortion at a time when the low risks of amniocentesis will become fully established and when simple abortion techniques become available ... For this ethicist, the feedback from amniocentesis not only affects the status of the newborn defective, but makes plausible its euthanasia."[3]

The Most Heinous Crime.

Human imperfection has become our society's only capital crime. Handicapped people are not usually endangered when they are adults because they can, in most cases, vote or otherwise defend themselves. But, as always, the eugenicists go after those who cannot speak on their own behalf: Infants, toddlers, and, of course, the preborn.

It is not surprising that eugenicists also support eugenic euthanasia, particularly when, as 'ethicist' Joseph Fletcher grumbles, "defective newborns slip through the screen and are born."[4]

The word 'eugenics' was first coined by Sir Francis Galton in 1883. The objective of this 'science' was and is the elimination of the unfit and the creation of a perfect 'master race' by improving the human genetic pool.

This goal can supposedly be accomplished through one or both of two methods: Positive eugenics, which advocates the "breeding" of human beings for superior qualities, and negative eugenics, which simply exterminates the unfit.

Today, the methods and language of the eugenics movement are infinitely more refined than they once were, but its objectives are still the same as they were more than 100 years ago.

Half a century ago, Margaret Sanger advocated the extermination of entire classes of "human weeds" for the purpose of eliminating certain "dysfunctional genes." She, like many modern-day 'ethicists,' was profoundly ignorant of even the basic principles of genetic engineering.

A Genetic 'Mission Impossible.'

It's a privilege to meet you. If it hadn't been for you, my job ten years later would have been much more difficult.

Sarah Weddington, lead plaintiff's attorney in Roe v. Wade, to Sherri Finkbine, who aborted her baby, allegedly deformed by Thalidomide, in Sweden before abortion was legal in this country.[5]

Introduction.

The ultimate objective of eugenics is to eliminate serious defects from the human gene pool. However, any geneticist knows that this is truly a genetic 'mission impossible.'

Human beings are prey to approximately 2,000 different genetic dysfunctions, and every person who has ever lived has been a carrier of several of them. If we wanted to get really serious about eradicating genetic defects, we would have kill every human being in existence both born and preborn!

The Rarity of Birth Defects.

Although each person is a carrier of several defective genes, very few serious birth defects actually occur. Abortions performed for actual birth defects (for eugenic reasons) are therefore also extremely rare. The following three statistical analyses show that serious birth defects and abortion for birth defects are very unusual in this country.

In the first study, Dr. David A. Grimes, a Planned Parenthood abortionist, has estimated that between 1,500 and 3,750 abortions are performed for birth defects annually in this country. This means that such abortions constitute, at the most, 0.23 percent of all abortions performed in the United States or, stated differently, one in 435 total abortions![6]

A second study published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed a serious birth defect rate of just over one percent (42 out of 3,000 births).

As a third study, several researchers have examined the form that Louisiana abortionists must fill out whenever they execute a preborn child. This form is entitled "Report of Induced Termination of Pregnancy" (Form #PHS 16-ab). It is a crime not to complete the form, and so compliance is generally good. Item 9d is entitled "Reason for Pregnancy Termination."

The Office of Public Health of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals compiles these statistics. Over the 14-year period 1975 to 1988, 202,135 abortions were performed in Louisiana. Of these, the reasons for aborting were listed in 115,243 of the cases.

According to the summary, there were 103 abortions performed for fetal deformity in Louisiana in 14-years. This is equivalent to 0.09% (less than one-tenth of one percent), or 1 out of every 1,119 abortions!

In summary, the probability of any one preborn child having a severe birth defect is less than one in one hundred. Information on the sixteen most common severe birth defects, and the most common tests for them, are shown in Figure 38-1 of Chapter 38, "Risks of Birth Defects." Figure 38-2 of the same chapter shows how the probability of serious fetal deformity begins at less than one percent and increases only very slightly with advancing maternal age.

The Bottom Line.

Finally, and most to the point, when we start establishing criteria for suitable human beings, where will it all end?

It's funny how certain groups apply these standards to the poorest or most helpless of human beings, and never to themselves. What will eventually determine our degree of "fitness:" Our whiteness, non-Jewishness, educational level, or proper political philosophy? 'Ethicists' like Joseph Fletcher, and various Nobel Prize winners, have already seriously suggested that children under the age of three do not qualify as human beings until they have passed a certain set of rigorous criteria.

For more information on Fletcher's very specific and detailed "criteria for humanity," see Chapter 112 of Volume III, "Objectives of the Euthanasia Movement."

We have already started to take 'corrective action' against those born people that we do not consider human. For example, in a 1976 Ontario program, 308 retarded children were forcibly sterilized. Canadian Health Minister Dennis Timbrell ordered an investigation and halt to the program. Mary Van Stolk, pro-abortion president of The Tree Foundation, denounced his action and issued a statement in support of the forced sterilizations, saying that "The focus should not be on the rights of the mentally retarded, but on the rights of the children that would be produced if there were no sterilizations."

In other words, Van Stolk claims that she supports the rights of the children that will not be born if the program she supports is implemented! This is classic anti-life Doublethink at its slovenly worst!

Genetic Tests for Birth Defects.

Introduction.

Fetal genetic tests are usually recommended for women over the age of 35 and for families that have had a history of Down Syndrome, Tay-Sachs Disease, muscular dystrophy, spina bifida, sickle-cell anemia, and other genetic disorders.

The major tests for genetic abnormalities in preborns are described in the following paragraphs.

Amniocentesis.

This test is performed after the 16th week of pregnancy on women who have abnormal alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) concentrations, have a genetic history of birth defects, or who are more than 35 years old. A needle is inserted through the abdominal wall into the uterus, and amniotic fluid is withdrawn and tested. Cells from the fluid are grown under laboratory conditions for about two weeks, and the cell DNA and chromosomes are tested for abnormalities. Abortions occur, on the average, 32 to 45 days following the test. The risks to the baby posed by the amnio range from 0.5 percent to 2.0 percent miscarriages.

In the October 1986 issue of Ob-Gyn News, Dr. Ann Tabor reported that her randomized study of 2,264 women in the 25 to 34 age group showed that 23 women or one percent had miscarriages directly caused by the amniocentesis. The test detected abnormalities in one percent of the babies, meaning that the amnio caused as many miscarriages of healthy babies as it detected abnormalities.

The vast majority of women who have abnormal babies have abortions at 20 weeks or more, when their babies weigh about a pound. If abortion is the 'treatment of choice,' the babies die by either being cut apart (D&E abortion) or, more rarely, by chemical burns (salt poisoning abortion), or one of the other grisly late-term abortion techniques such as dilation and extraction (D&X). These procedures are described in Chapter 61, "Methodology and Aspects of Abortion."

The major risks of amniocentesis include maternal hemorrhage and infection, fetal puncture wounds, pneumothorax (injection of gas into the mother's pleural cavity), laceration of the baby's spleen, damage to the placenta and/or umbilical cord, and the baby's death from exsanguination (loss of blood).

Some pro-abortionists have seriously suggested using amniocentesis to entirely eliminate major genetic disorders! These ideas are the result of profound ignorance. For example, the elimination of cystic fibrosis would require the deaths of all of the carriers of the disease, and would mandate at least 20 million abortions over three generations, many of which would be forced abortions, of course because not everyone would agree with disposing of babies simply because they are not perfect.[7]

In 1975, one author wrote that "Medical opinion is generally firm. It recommends that amniocentesis should be offered to the patient only on the clear understanding that if the fetus is found to be affected, the pregnancy will be terminated. Abortion laws were unthinkable a dozen years ago. Amniocentesis laws, currently unthinkable, may also be with us before so very long. There will be eugenic strides ..."[8]

Eunice Kennedy Shriver highlighted another major problem associated with amniocentesis; "The use of amniocentesis to determine birth defects and to precipitate abortion has caused a decline in research in the fields of retardation and birth defects."[9]

Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS). This procedure is physically similar to amniocentesis, but can be performed about eight weeks earlier. A plastic catheter is used to clip villi (hairlike structures) from the placenta, and the results of chromosomal tests are available within a week. The risks to the baby are greater than with amnio, however: from one to five percent miscarriages.

Maternal Serum Alpha-Fetoprotein (AFP). AFP is a maternal blood test performed from the 13th to 20th weeks of pregnancy. Neural tube defects in a baby may cause its kidneys to release elevated levels of AFP into the mother's bloodstream, while lower levels signal the possibility of Down Syndrome. The blood test must be confirmed by ultrasound and/or amniocentesis. The risk to the baby or mother is nil for the blood test by itself.

Ultrasonography.

Ultrasound uses high-frequency sound waves to create an outline of the baby and its internal structures on a sonography screen. Sonograms are sometimes used by abortionists to position the baby for a kill. At the 20th week, it can be used to spot various defects in the spine, kidney, heart, and skeleton. The effects of sonograms on unborn babies are unknown. It is possible that delayed-onset effects might be profound. Research into this field is ongoing. Of course, considering the deleterious effects of sonography on a baby slated for extermination is rather pointless.

The Ultimate Genetic Test. The mapping of every human gene has been a dream since James Watson and Francis Crick discovered DNA in the middle 1950s. This dream is currently being realized by the largest scientific research project of all time. The Human Genome Project dwarfs in scope even the Manhattan Project and the search for a cancer or AIDS cure.[10]

The federal government has appropriated $3,000,000,000 (three billion dollars) for this project, the purpose of which is to map and identify every one of the 50,000 to 100,000 separate genes in the human body.

This massive project could only have one purpose: To identify faulty genes in the human body. Dr. James Watson, the director of the project, said in 1973 that "If a child were not declared alive until three days after birth, then all parents could be allowed the choice that only a few are given under the present system. The doctor could allow the child to die if the parents so chose and save a lot of misery and suffering."[11]

If the Genome Project is successfully completed, Watson and fellow eugenicists will not have to wait for the birth of a 'defective' child.

When the genetic map of the blastocyst becomes available at the 8- or 16-cell stage, it will be possible to test it for more than 500 genetic defects that are present or may be developed throughout the person's long lifetime. There will then inevitably be a value judgment made on whether a life is worth living if a person is predicted to develop multiple sclerosis at age 30, diabetes at age 40, or a type of cancer by age 50.

Dr. Cecil B. Jacobson, Chief of the Reproductive Genetics Unit at George Washington University Hospital, has already voiced this desire; "I can't imagine any reasonably responsible person arguing against the abortion of mongols ... If we could tell what fetuses are going to be affected with cancer in their 40s and 50s, I would be for aborting them now."[12]

The possibilities for genetic-map abuse are as endless as the human imagination. An entire covert industry centered around obtaining genetic maps of individuals will inevitably develop. Insurance companies will jettison their actuarial tables and base their rates upon individual genome maps. People will demand to see their partners' maps before accepting offers of marriage. Employers will scour 'genmaps' to insure that they hire no alcoholics or kleptomaniacs. Airlines, police departments, and other organizations will want to insure that their ranks include no schizoid or manic-depressive personalities.

The Specter of Coercion.

Introduction.

The ethics of fetal genetic testing are very different, depending upon whether they are examined on the macro (societal) or micro (individual) scales.

History has shown us that, when given a tool that can identify defects, a society's medical profession invariably takes the easiest road to improving the gene pool negative eugenics.

The First Careful Steps.

We have seen that new 'gene-selective' medical technology is first gingerly applied in a few strictly-controlled cases. Then, when the procedure becomes more accepted and well-known, it is applied in wider and wider circles. Eventually, it is used even in inappropriate cases. Finally, it is mandated or expected by society.

Fetal genetic testing is following this path in our country right now. The pressure to quality-test every preborn child and eliminate those who do not 'measure up' is mounting.

The possibility of coercion regarding a person's genetics and pre-existing medical conditions has already surfaced. Some states passed laws as recently as the 1970s mandating sickle-cell carrier screening for school attendance or for marriage licenses. A 1989 Texas bill would have made it a criminal offense for an AIDS-infected woman to bear a child.

Dr. Philip R. Reilly, executive director of the Shriver Center for Mental Retardation in Waltham, Massachusetts, asserts that "Genetic discrimination is present now and will continue, driven by economic considerations. Organizations tend to shy away from people whose problems may be costly."[13]

Geneticist Dr. Paul Billings of Harvard found, through a medical journal ad, 29 people who have been discriminated against because of their genes; they were turned down for auto, health, and life insurance, mortgages, disability insurance, adoption agencies, or were denied employment.[13]

Insurance and Pressure to Abort.

As the various gene-selective technologies become more and more accurate and accepted by the medical profession, interest will inevitably turn to cost containment, and the intensity of coercion will certainly become greater.

Some insurance plans already refuse to pay for deliveries or care of infants with genetic defects if amniocentesis and abortion are not accepted by the parents for the purpose of 'selecting out' the 'defectives' with serious birth defects.

Dr. Gilbert S. Omenn of the University of Washington's Medical Genetics Division, says that "When health insurers do enter the field [of genetic counseling], some enterprising company may offer to pay for amniocentesis and abortion, if indicated, but not for subsequent medical care of the offspring, should abortion be refused."[14]

And Kenneth Vaux, Professor of Ethics at Baylor College of Medicine, reports that "I am told by a reliable scholar that a major private health insurance company is contemplating the policy of requiring amniocentesis or other acceptable forms of antenatal diagnosis for all pregnant women holding a policy with the company. If a diagnosis of congenital defect is made, insurance will be dropped on the potential child. In other words, abortion will be required ...

Marjorie Shaw, one of the world's most outstanding geneticists, argues that genetic disease is the same as communicable disease, and therefore should be isolated and quarantined as a public health measure not allowed to transmit itself. We have a legal obligation to protect the unborn from the cruel and unusual punishment of genetic disease. Surely we need ponder whether the abnormal merit our protection, even in utero. We now have the possibility, which means the responsibility, of deciding whom we will admit to the human community.[15]

And, on April 4, 1976, the New York Times predicted that

In the far future a subsidy by insurance companies or the government might be available if the procedure [amniocentesis] could be shown to save money. Researchers at Columbia University School of Public Health have proposed a voluntary program of screening all pregnant women 40 and over and eventually [a mandatory program to screen] all pregnant women to prevent 90 percent of Down's Syndrome.

This is another example of how fallacious the label "pro-choice" really is. It makes no difference to the Abortion Establishment that parents may be pro-life, and will therefore accept and value their children, even with handicaps. Pro-abortionists say that we don't have to get abortions ourselves, and then they put extreme pressure on parents of handicapped preborns. The insurance companies give them a simple choice: Kill your child or be ruined by medical bills that may amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Ethicist John Fletcher (again, no relation to Joseph) says that "With the availability of the technology and know-how permitting prevention of many genetically-based congenital abnormalities, there may be developing as a corollary a social attitude which demands such use. In general, if a congenital abnormality can be avoided, then it should be avoided, and those individuals who do not partake of these advances will be socially ostracized."[16]

The crushing weight of Godlike 'professional opinion' already acts to compel parents of preborns who are diagnosed as being handicapped to abort. The National Institute of Health found that more than 95 percent of all preborn babies that were found defective by any prenatal genetic test were aborted.[16] It seems that the handicapped have no room on this perfect earth of ours.

Already, some doctors and 'ethicists' are seriously discussing concrete actions, legislation, and guidelines that demand compulsory abortion in many cases to follow what they call "humane minimal standards of reproduction." The Obstetrics and Gynecology News of August 1, 1979, for example, quotes several doctors as stating that we should enact "laws forbidding some persons from reproducing."

Pressure to Neuter.

State governments and courts have demonstrated an eagerness to forcibly sterilize poor women or compel them to use abortifacients like NORPLANT. Given this sordid record, there is no reason to expect that they will not use similar coercive means to enforce the fetal testing of pregnant poor women.

A Familiar (and Disgusting) Taste and Feel. Does all of this sound familiar? It certainly should!

We have apparently not learned our lessons from history. If we tolerate any restrictions whatever on who should reproduce or be born, the standards will invariably be tightened again and again until all those people remaining are 'perfect' or 'approved' human beings.

The End Product.

The specter of mandatory eugenic abortion and infanticide is not some paranoid pro-life fantasy; many doctors and 'ethicists' are so supremely confident in eugenics that they no longer bother to hide their ultimate objectives. Indeed, they parade their contempt for 'imperfect' human life in the most prestigious medical journals in the land and speak of the elimination of 'life not worth living' at top-level conferences, as shown in Figure 40-1.

For further information on the highly advanced state of eugenic infanticide in the United States, see Chapter 110 in Volume III, "Infanticide."

FIGURE 40-1
QUOTES FROM 'BIOETHICISTS'
DEMANDING MANDATORY EUGENIC TESTING AND INFANTICIDE

No newborn infant should be declared human until it has passed certain tests regarding its genetic endowment and that if it fails these tests, it forfeits the right to live.

Nobel laureate Dr. Francis Crick, Pacific News Service, January 1978.

If we compare a severely defective human infant with a dog or a pig ... we will often find the nonhuman to have superior capacities ... Only the fact that the defective infant is a member of the species Homo sapiens leads it to be treated differently from the dog or pig. But species membership alone is not relevant ... If we can put aside the obsolete and erroneous notion of the sanctity of all human life, we may start to look at human life as it really is: at the quality of life that each human being has or can attain.

Peter Singer. "Sanctity of Life or Quality of Life?" Pediatrics, July 1983.

Parents are, after all, legally permitted a choice of abortion if the fetus is shown to be severely malformed [with spina bifida, for example]. It is paradoxical that this same choice should be denied them in the case of a premature baby with similar or worse handicaps.

'Bioethicist' Mary Warnock. Quoted in Nat Hentoff. "Strange Priesthood of Bioethics." National Right to Life News, March 27, 1986. Page 15.

Most people would prefer to raise children who do not suffer from gross deformities or from several physical, emotional or intellectual handicaps. If it could be shown that there is no moral objection to infanticide, the happiness of society could be significantly and justifiably increased ... A newborn infant does not possess the concept of a conscious self any more than a newborn kitten possesses such a concept ... infanticide during a time interval shortly after birth must be morally acceptable.

Michael Tooley, "Abortion and Infanticide." Philosophy and Public Affairs, January 1972.

Infanticide is not a great wrong. I do not want to be construed as condemning women who, under certain circumstances, quietly put their infants to death.

'Bioethicist' Beverly Wildung Harrison. Quoted in David H. Andrusko. "Abortion and Infanticide: Is There a Difference?" National Right to Life News, May 2, 1985. Page 2.

American opinion is rapidly moving toward the position where parents of an abnormal child will be considered as irresponsible as those who have unusually large families ... with the increased public acceptance of abortion, an attitude toward parenthood could evolve that would include pressure to use prenatal diagnosis and a new criteria for parenthood will be to have healthy children who can function well in society ... No human should be brought into existence who is incapable of leading a normal life.

Dr. James Sorenson, Professor of Socio-Medical Sciences, Boston University, at the 1976 New York symposium entitled "Prenatal Diagnosis and its Impact on Society." Newsday, June 1, 1976.

How far should we defend the right of a parent to produce a child that is painfully diseased, condemned to an early death, or mentally retarded? In our society, a parent does not have the right to withhold an education from his children. Does he then have a right to produce a child that is uneducable?

J.F. Crow, "Conclusion, Advances in Human Genetics and Their Impact on Society." Birth Defects, September 1972. Page 16.

Eventually, when public opinion is prepared for it, no child shall be admitted into the society of the living who would be certain to suffer any social handicap for example, any physical or mental defect that would prevent marriage or would make others tolerate his company only from a sense of mercy ... Life in early infancy is very close to nonexistence, and admitting a child into our society is almost like admitting one from potential to actual existence, and viewed in this way, only normal life should be accepted.

'Bioethicist' Millard Everett. Ideals of Life. Quoted in C. Everett Koop, M.D. "The Slide to Auschwitz." Human Life Review, Summer 1982, page 22.

Testing for Individual Cases.

Many pro-lifers argue that the only reason for an amniocentesis or CVS is to determine if the baby can be aborted.

What other reason can there possibly be?

'Amnio' is particularly popular for sex-selection purposes: It is very 'upscale' to possess what is now called a "gender-balanced" family: one perfect little boy and one perfect little girl, preferably White and immaculately dressed.

Ah, technology making the American dream possible for everyone.

On the other hand, there are certain cases in which such tests may be ethical;

• in the last trimester of pregnancy, such tests may be performed to facilitate the assembling of properly-trained medical personnel and equipment that may be required for a difficult birth due to abnormalities;

• to prepare for in utero and post-birth corrective measures, including dietary control for a newborn with phenylketonuria or galactosemia; and

• to prepare the parents psychologically, emotionally, and financially for the birth of an abnormal child.

Of course, the latter reason is no reason at all for pro-lifers; they are fully prepared to accept any child as a gift from God, no matter what the baby's condition may be.


References: Tests for Birth Defects.

[1] Willard Gaylin, M.D., and Marc Lappe, Ph.D., Institute of Society, Ethics, and the Life Sciences (The Hastings Institute). Atlantic Magazine, May 1975, page 70.

[2] The Marquis de Sade. "Yet Another Effort, Frenchmen." Juliette (New York: Grove Paperbacks, Inc.), 1968, page 336.

[3] John Fletcher. "Attitudes Towards Defective Newborns." Hastings Center Studies, January 1974. Page 31.

[4] Joseph Fletcher. "Abortion, Euthanasia, and Care of Defective Newborns." New England Journal of Medicine, 75(1975), 292.

[5] Conversation between Sarah Weddington and Sherri Finkbine, Quoted in Patricia Myers. "Shades of Gray." Phoenix Magazine, October 1989, pages 40 to 45.

[6] David A. Grimes, M.D. "Second-Trimester Abortions in the United States," Alan Guttmacher Institute's Family Planning Perspectives, November/December 1984.

[7] Robert A. Brungs. "Biotechnology and the Social Order." Human Life Review, Winter 1979. Page 36.

[8] Anthony Smith. The Human Pedigree. New York: J.B. Lippincott Co., 1975. Page 275.

[9] Eunice Kennedy Shriver, speaking at a Minneapolis benefit ball. Quoted in National Right to Life News, March 1975, page 6.

[10] Jerry E. Bishop and Michael Waldholz. Genome: The Story of the Most Astonishing Scientific Adventure of Our Time The Attempt to Map All the Genes in the Human Body. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1990. Reviewed in the Bernadell Technical Bulletin, November 1990, pages 10 and 11.

[11] Nobel laureate Dr. James D. Watson, Time Magazine, May 28, 1973, page 104.

[12] Cecil B. Jacobson, Chief, Reproductive Genetics Unit, George Washington University Hospital, Washington, D.C. Psychology Today, September 1975, page 22.

[13] "The Telltale Gene." Consumer Reports, July 1990, pages 483 to 488.

[14] Dr. Gilbert S. Omenn, Medical Genetics Division, University of Washington. Quoted in "M.D. Predicts Forced Abortion." National Right to Life News, July, 1975, page 4.

[15] Kenneth Vaux, Professor of Ethics at Baylor College of Medicine. Biomedical Ethics. New York: Harper & Row, 1974. Pages 51, 58 and 59.

[16] Ethicist John Fletcher, quoted in Sorenson, "Some Social and Psychological Issues in Genetic Screening." Symposium on Intrauterine Diagnosis (D. Bergsma, editor). 1971, page 177.


Further Reading: Tests for Birth Defects.

Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Public Health Service, National Institute of Health. Antenatal Diagnosis: Report of a Consensus Development Conference. Report No. 79-2973, pages 1 to 79.

Mary-Lou Weisman. Intensive Care. New York: Random House, 1982. 306 pages. Reviewed by Eugene F. Diamond, M.D., on page 6 of the November 24, 1983 issue of National Right to Life News. The mother of a child with muscular dystrophy tells her story as her upper-crust lifestyle begins to unravel, and when she is told that the chances of having another such child are only one in forty, she undergoes a saline abortion.

The following articles on birth defects and eugenic selection are available as reprints from the Institute of Science, Ethics and the Life Sciences, Hastings-on-Hudson, New York 10706.

Reprint #103: Marc Lappe, Ph.D. "Moral Obligations and the Fallacies of 'Genetic Control.' " Theological Studies, September 1972.

Reprint #2001: Robert M. Veatch. "Case Study: The Unexpected Chromosome ... A Counselor's Dilemma." The Hastings Center Report, February 1972, pages 8 and 9.

Reprint #2005: Bentley Glass, M.D. "Human Heredity and Ethical Problems." Perspectives in Biology and Medicine. Volume 15, Winter 1972, pages 237 to 253. On "euphenics," the modification of the phenotype of a defective organism by treatment.

Reprint #2006: Robert L. Sinsheimer. "Prospects for Future Scientific Developments: Ambush or Opportunity?" From Ethical Issues in Human Genetics, edited by Bruce Hilton, et.al. Plenum Press, 1973. Pages 341 to 351.

Reprint #2007: John Fletcher. "The Brink: The Parent-Child Bond in the Genetic Revolution." Theological Studies, September 1972.

Reprint #2008: Marc Lappe, Ph.D. "The Genetic Counselor: Responsible to Whom?" Hastings Center Report, Volume 1, Number 2, September 1971, pages 6 to 11.

Reprint #2009: Margery W. Shaw, M.D. "Genetic Counseling." Science, Volume 184, May 17, 1974, page 751. This is a noteworthy short article if only for the author's profoundly and unforgivably naive assertion that "I am not afraid that genetic screening will lead to genocide, nor that abortion will lead to infanticide, as many have warned. If we need checks on our behavior the law will provide them."

Reprint #3009: Marc Lappe, Ph.D., and Richard O. Roblin, Ph.D. "Newborn Genetic Screening as a Concept in Health Care Delivery: A Critique." Ethical, Social, and Legal Dimensions of Screening for Human Genetic Disease. Volume X, Number 6; 1-24, 1974.

Marc Lappe, Ph.D. "Mass Genetic Screening Programs and Human Values: Another View." Medical Dimensions, February 1973, pages 8, 26, and 30.

Marc Lappe, Ph.D., James M. Gustafson, Ph.D., and Richard Roblin, Ph.D. "Ethical and Social Issues in Screening for Genetic Disease." The New England Journal of Medicine. May 25, 1972, pages 1,129 to 1,132.

Robert F. Murray, Jr., M.D. "Problems Behind the Promise: Ethical Issues in Mass Genetic Screening." Hastings Center Report, April 1972, pages 10 to 13.

Tabitha M. Powledge, Ph.D. "New Trends in Genetic Legislation." Hastings Center Report, December 1973, pages 6 and 7.

Paul Ramsey. Ethical Issues in Human Genetics. Edited by Bruce Hilton, et.al. Plenum Press, 1973. Pages 147 to 161. John A. Osmundsen. "We Are All Mutants Preventive Genetic Medicine: A Growing Clinical Field Troubled by a Confusion of Ethicists." Medical Dimensions, February 1973, pages 5 to 7 and 26 to 28.


© American Life League BBS 1-703-659-7111 

This is a chapter of the Pro-Life Activist's Encyclopedia, published by American Life League.


Provided Courtesy of:
Eternal Word Television Network
5817 Old Leeds Road
Irondale, AL 35210
www.ewtn.com