The Republican-led Ohio legislature has made a move against abortion that’s causing ripples across the nation, but the nature of the move is stirring a unique debate. They’ve passed a bill banning Down syndrome abortions.
According to Fox News, the bill is heading to Gov. John Kasich’s desk, and he’s indicated that he’s likely to sign it. The measure essentially bans doctors from knowingly killing unborn children who have been diagnosed as having Down syndrome.
“Doctors who violate the ban would lose their medical license and face a fourth-degree felony charge, including up to a $5,000 fine and 18 months in prison,” Fox News editor Gregg Re explained. “Mothers would not be punished by the law.”
The pro-abortion crowd, especially the ACLU, are adamantly against the bill. Many of their arguments are centered around the mother’s choice in the matter and taxpayer-funded care for the Down syndrome child. Others wish for a general increase of abortions in America, not a reduction.
Many people on the pro-life side are in favor of the Down syndrome abortion ban or any ban that preserves more unborn babies. Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, who is the mother of a Down syndrome son, is one of the bill’s supporters, Town Hall reports.
But there some mothers of Down syndrome children, as well as some pro-life folks, who are uncomfortable with the message they say the bill sends.
One mother, Jane Gerhardt, testified against the bill, arguing, “This bill sends a very clear message, that some disabilities are more worthy of life than others and that one disability — Down syndrome — is the most worthy.”
Indiana and North Dakota have passed similar abortion bans. On the other hand, outside the U.S., countries like Iceland have a 100% abortion rate for unborn babies with Down syndrome. It’s been an attempt to eliminate the condition from their country that has caused a debate in other countries like the UK, where British conservative politician Lord Kevin Shinkwin — who rose to power despite his genetic disorder — has argued passionately against the abortion of the disabled.
What do you think about Ohio’s abortion ban bill? In other news, a UCLA player rescued from China by Trump says he really didn’t want to thank the president.