Sunday, November 27, 2005

Another one I just don't get

This article in The Australian tells of a doctor being prosecuted after starting an abortion which resulted in the live birth of a baby that died after a few hours.

Dr. Suman Sood allegedly gave a 20-year-old patient abortion drugs and instructed her to return the following day to have the fetus finished off. But the patient expelled a live 23-week baby into the toilet at home. The baby lived about five hours.

Sood, of course, insists that she did nothing wrong, and in a paradoxical way I have to agree with her. If the mother had a right to have the fetus snuffed, how much of a difference can it really make whether the fetus gave up the ghost in the uterus, in the commode, or anyplace else?

The charges are mere illegal abortion charges, on the grounds that Sood had failed to properly assess the patient's physical, emotional, and social health and well-being prior to starting the abortion. Sood has done, by her own reckoning, about 10,000 abortions in Australia. So there was a glitch in this one. What's the problem?

We need to make up our mind whether or not women are entitled to a dead baby or not. It's just too bizarre to say that Sood would have done nothing wrong had she merely been more efficient.

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