Two European moral philosophers have caused a stir by arguing that babies should be vulnerable to "post-birth abortion" (otherwise known as murder) because they have not yet become a person. In their article, After-birth Abortion: Why Should the Baby Live?, Dr. Francesca Minerva and Alberto Giubilini take the position that it should be legal to kill newborns for the same reasons it is acceptable to kill them in the womb. If they are imperfect, too much of a burden - or simply unwanted - then it is moral for a woman to dispose of them.
Apparently Minerva acknowledges that babies are human, but believes that they don't acquire personhood until two years after birth.
Many in Europe have offered public condemnation of the two academics and their paper.
The London-based Daily Mail quotes Lord Alton, Chairman of the Parliamentary Group on Pro-Life as saying, "It is profoundly disturbing, indeed shocking, to see the way in which opinion-formers within the medical profession have ditched the professional belief of the healer to uphold the sanctity of human life for this impoverished and inhumane defense of child destruction."
Of course Minerva's views are shocking. But that is not the important point.
In a perverse way, she is doing a public service. She is extending the arbitrary logic of abortion to those of us who have survived the womb. Given her assumptions, it is difficult to logically argue with her conclusions. But given the evil which she embraces - we know something is dangerously wrong with her assumptions, indeed, the assumptions underpinning the whole abortion culture.
The heart of the problem is the willful belief that all human beings are not persons. Certainly Dr. Minerva did not invent that particular horror - she is just playing with it. Many cultures declared blacks to be non-persons; Hitler did the same with Jews. Feminists have done it to children in the womb, and some in the medical profession would so treat the disabled or elderly.