When I first became interested in the abortion debate in 2001, it was after a Dutch professor had suggested abortion be allowed up to 27 weeks gestation (it was 24 weeks then, was restricted to 21 weeks a few years ago due to viability clauses). The reasoning behind the opinion was that an unborn child isn’t a human till they can think, which is supposed not to happen till 30 to 32 to weeks gestation. I was outraged, because I was born at a little over 25 weeks gestation and certainly considered myself a human at birth. And why is a child’s personhood status different inside the womb than out?
Recently, a few miraculous medical achievements have once again spurred controversy around this topic. In Australia, a girl named Leah Bowlen was successfully operated in utero for something called Amniotic Band Syndrome at 22 weeks gestation. In Texas, an even younger unborn child named Macie Hope McCartney was partially delivered, so doctors could remove a large tumor. She was successfully replaced and delivered a second time ten weeks later. Hope was discharged from the hospital last Saturday at four weeks of age. Both girls would’ve certainly died if they had not had their prenatal surgeries.
Come to think of it. Unborn children as young as four or five months getting life-saving surgery. In my opinion, this is a much more ethical use of prenatal screening than the routine weeding out of disabled children because the families think they’re better off having them dead.