Wednesday, March 22, 2006

North Korea: Killing Disabled Newborns

Via Modern Commentaries, the fact that a defector from North Korea to the South claims that newborns with any kind of visible defect are killed immediately.

It seems to be the Brave New World of “perfect” people who have no defects.

One word of caution: this is from a defector, with no corroboration that we can find at the moment. Defectors have been known to tell stories they think their new hosts want to hear, or correctly recount things that are true but not as typical as they make out. It is being run by Reuters, which is reputable enough, but hardly perfect.

That women in North Korean prison camps have been forced to have abortions, or had their newborn infants killed, is well documented:
Women who have become pregnant in China are especially targeted in detention. According to a number of reports from those detained with such women, all women found to be pregnant by a Chinese man are taken for forced abortion. North Korean officials say that they do not want any ‘Chinks’ and make derogatory and insulting comments about sleeping with Chinese men. . . . Witnesses spoke of women detained with them who were pregnant being taken away and coming back without their baby, complaining of the heartbreak, pain and abuse of having a forced abortion. One witness described how she personally saw a prisoner giving birth to a baby and the nurses cutting the umbilical cord and then smothering the baby with a wet towel.
Of course, if this report about North Korea is accurate, is it really that much worse than the United States, where a large number of babies are aborted when thought to have Down Syndrome?
While the live birth rate of babies afflicted with Down syndrome has remained steady in recent years, studies have shown the abortion rate of Down syndrome babies is estimated at 80 to 90 percent when prenatal screening reveals the possibility or probability for the condition.

Past studies have shown that the prenatal diagnosis of the unborn child with Down syndrome has resulted in high rates of abortion with at least one study showing medical professionals often pressure woman to abort.
So just how is it that we are more civilized than North Korea?


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