I’ve no idea whether this story is true or not

Women whose babies develop fatal defects in the early stages of pregnancy will be given advice on going ahead with the birth so the NHS can harvest their organs, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
Most expectant mothers opt for termination after being told the devastating news their child has no chance of survival once born.
But now, amid a chronic shortage of donated organs, mums will be ‘supported’ to have the baby at nine months so that the child’s vital organs can be taken for transplant.

After all, it is the Mail.

But I doubt I’m the only one who would be a little, erm, uneasy, if it were true.

32 thoughts on “I’ve no idea whether this story is true or not”

  1. Bloke in Germany in Hong Kong

    Why would you be uneasy? You’re usually anti-abortion, especially in the case of defects that are slowly fatal after birth, but you are suddently pro-abortion in the event of defects that are rapidly fatal instead?

    Or you’d prefer the pregnancy to go to term but are then uneasy about the organ harvesting without the consent of the harvestee? That likewise can only be residual Catholicism, wanting an intact body ready for resurrection (which we could solve by insisting that organ recipients are buried not cremated, so you can be reassembled in the afterlife). After all, a person who hasn’t formed a concept of consent and isn’t going to be around to experience the consequences of their parents giving consent, really isn’t going to give a fuck.

  2. So Much For Subtlety

    Bloke in Germany in Hong Kong – “Why would you be uneasy?”

    Because normal people find this grotesque.

    “That likewise can only be residual Catholicism, wanting an intact body ready for resurrection (which we could solve by insisting that organ recipients are buried not cremated, so you can be reassembled in the afterlife).”

    It is also a question of means and ends. Women will not be told to go to term with a healthy baby, but when it will die anyway, perhaps with some medical help, they should. So their organs can be taken. Doctors should be saving lives. They should not be vultures waiting to pick over barely cool corpses looking for organs.

    It is just part of the deadening of feeling. Once you legalise abortion you accept any number of vile things.

  3. The Mail rarely lies. It has an agenda. It will print stories about black criminals and white victims. It will print a lot more stories about how video nasties are bad than OK, but they’ve always got a source. I’d rather trust the accuracy of a Mail story than most other newspapers.

  4. I’m sorry, this is horrific. I worked with a woman who delivered a stillborn child (the baby died a few days before birth) and the experience left her permanently broken.

    No amount of “support” could make this achievable.

  5. The whole POINT of the pro-abortion movement is that a woman is not just an incubator. I’m proudly pro-abortion and this is disgusting.

    Of course, if a woman wants to do it out of some masochistic sense of obligation to society, it would be wrong to stop her. It seems pretty fucking insensitive to try and push it on her when she’s already dealing with the pain of finding out she’s not having a baby.

  6. So Much For Subtlety

    So the next step, when cloning is a little bit better, is to pay a Third World woman to bring a clone to near term. Then abort it by sucking its brains out – something that leaves the organs undamaged.

    Then use them.

    No doubt the Left will tell us what a great step forward this would be.

  7. Most expectant mothers opt for termination after being told the devastating news their child has no chance of survival once born.

    Will become “Some expectant mothers will be told their child has no chance of survival despite it not being true”.

  8. @smfs I’m guessing it won’t take much more effort to edit the clone with just enough brainstem to keep the heart beating. The ethics will go insane, then.

    Don’t know where I am, with this. From a utility perspective, sure, why waste perfectly good organs. But it’s a crazy question to put to someone that’s just found out their baby isn’t going to grow up.

  9. We went through this, my wife had a hysterotomy when we were told that the foetus did not have a brain. That was enough to deal with, the end of hope, telling the boys their baby brother had died. We christened him Mark and had a funeral which gave some closure.

    No way could a woman retain her sanity carrying a ‘dead’ baby to full term. She wouldn’t be able to go out in public and face the regular: “when’s it due, dear?” (My wife had just a couple of those in the short term between scan and op and couldn’t cope with either). Pregnancy, especially in the later stages, is physically hard, even potentially harmful. Women endure pregnancy because of the promised reward of a child at the end. To ask them to do so to produce an organ donor is just obscene.

  10. The yuk factors, moral and medical, are here so high I can’t imagine it is seriously proposed.

    Who’s to say the organs aren’t compromised with the same defect as caused the foetal death? Would you want to receive one?

    My guess is that this is lifted from one of those medics’ speakeasy forums.

  11. @DocBud, ugh, yes, it must be horrendous having to confront that question every day. It’s just not going to work, is it?

  12. Bloke in Costa Rica

    MBE: that link was an eye-opener. Jesus. It’s a nice reminder of what happens when utilitarianism runs amok.

  13. Medical ethicists generally hate the “yuck factor”, since it leads to misleading and irrational ethical judgments. But not a lot of ordinary folk would be fans of where pure utilitarian goes either. Other folk at the Uehiro Centre (which incidentally raises interesting questions about academic funding, at Oxford specifically as well as in general) are interested in “post-birth abortion”, which I’m sure lots of Catholics will see as further evidence for all those “thin end of the wedge” arguments.

  14. Bloke in Costa Rica

    “what happens if you are a utilitarian but your valuation of human life is that it’s a net negative?”

    Well, ideally, you get kicked in the bollocks/cunt until you explode.

  15. This has just as much credibility as the claims by the Yahoos! that 50% of fetuses are aborted yet when pressed don’t know a single woman that has had an abortion without a good medical reason.

  16. According to the DM itself, what the doctor behind the proposal actually said is “we are going to discuss whether it is an option, somehow, to tell women in this situation, that organ donation is an option”. That’s a long way from “women…will be given advice on…”

  17. So Much For Subtlety

    Social Justice Warrior – “According to the DM itself, what the doctor behind the proposal actually said is “we are going to discuss whether it is an option, somehow, to tell women in this situation, that organ donation is an option”. That’s a long way from “women…will be given advice on…””

    Actually that looks like exactly the same thing to me. But even if it wasn’t, we can see with Down’s Syndrome, when the NHS wants to play God, it is a small step from “offering parents all the options” to “bullying them into aborting all Down’s children”.

  18. So Much For Subtlety

    Liberal Yank – “This has just as much credibility as the claims by the Yahoos! that 50% of fetuses are aborted yet when pressed don’t know a single woman that has had an abortion without a good medical reason.”

    I doubt that anyone much knows a woman who aborted a baby due to a good medical reason. I don’t. They are vanishingly rare. If you do either you are an outlier or someone is not being honest with you.

  19. So Much For Subtlety

    MyBurningEars – “(Oxford professor. Probably not to the taste of SMFS.)”

    Not really. No. We have a moral responsibility to select the best child we can have genetically? OK. He tries to frame that argument like a good SJW would – empathy and so on. But we know that, alas, being Black is linked with any number of poor outcomes. Society is, no doubt, to blame. So do Black parents have a moral responsibility to have White children? It would improve their children’s outcomes once they have got passed the “WTF?” response at PTA meetings.

    Yeah. Doesn’t sound so nice now does it?

    MyBurningEars – “Not entirely unrelated, what happens if you are a utilitarian but your valuation of human life is that it’s a net negative?”

    Didn’t we do this experiment? Only with people who were utilitarian but their valuation was only that some human life is a net negative.

  20. SFMS, my cousin’s wife did. It was a case where the baby would not live and there were possible severe health risks to his wife. If you are the type of man who would prefer that she died then I hope you get mauled by a pack of wild hyenas on your way to work tomorrow.

    How many women do you personally know that have had an unnecessary abortion?

    In the same time period how many children were born into the same circle?

  21. Interesting.

    “In 2014, Teddy Houlston became what was then Britain’s youngest organ donor after dying just 100 minutes after birth. Teddy’s parents were told their baby would be born with virtually no brain after their 12-week scan, but decided against abortion. His two kidneys and heart valves helped save an adult’s life.”

    Does that make you uncomfortable?

    If so, should they have:
    a) aborted?
    b) carried to term but then refused donation?
    c) be made to carry to term and then be told that organ donation was “yucky” and have doctors refuse to discuss it?

    “I’m sure lots of Catholics will see as further evidence for all those “thin end of the wedge” arguments.”

    Organ donation is always a bit of a problem for the whole bodily resurrection thing. On judgement day there’ll be a lot of milling around and people arguing over who owned what bit first…

    Although there is an interesting theological question over whether you can be fully dead before all the individual bits of you die. If one part of you dies unbaptised while another part ends up in a virtuous Christian, do you get into heaven? Or does the recipient end up with bits of themselves stuck in purgatory? The questions are endless – I’m sure the Jesuits will be delighted.

  22. So Much For Subtlety

    Liberal Yank – “my cousin’s wife did.”

    You are an outlier then. Notice that the doctors telling a patient that the baby will die does not mean that the baby will die. Nor is there much equivalence between an actual human life being terminated and a risk that one might be.

    “How many women do you personally know that have had an unnecessary abortion?”

    All of them. Medically necessary abortion are, as I said, vanishingly small.

    NiV – “If so, should they have:
    a) aborted?
    b) carried to term but then refused donation?
    c) be made to carry to term and then be told that organ donation was “yucky” and have doctors refuse to discuss it?”

    What they did was saintly. They should be respect for it. Whether or not what is saintly when done spontaneously and voluntarily should therefore becoming a matter for NHS doctors to bully every woman into doing is another matter.

    “Organ donation is always a bit of a problem for the whole bodily resurrection thing.”

    Assuming anyone had a problem with this these days.

  23. Bloke not in Cymru

    When my wife worked critical care she claimed many of the doctors would disappear and leave it to the nurses to have the organ donation chat, one of the hardest parts of the job she said, what was equally hard was the relatives bringing up and you had to tell them on medical grounds the deceased couldn’t be a donor. She often pointed out that changing the language might help as harvested isn’t a great choice of words

  24. SMFS a baby basically without a heart will not live. It’s not like there is some repository of baby organs that can be harvested for a transplant.

    If all of the women you know have had an abortion then you are also an outlier. I actually feel sorry for you since no females in your social circles have any self control.

    You did never tell me how many children these women have had. If you know 10 women that have discussed all having 1 abortion with you and have had a total of 20 kids then you still are only at 33%, not 50%. The best numbers I have found suggest in the US it is around 20%.

  25. I remain to be convinced that SMFS has ever talked to a woman who wasn’t employed in a customer service role.

  26. Actually that looks like exactly the same thing to me.

    I’ll spell it out then for the hard of thinking.

    What the doctor quoted in the mail said was that “we”, i.e. transplant surgeons, were talking among themselves about whether there was “an option, somehow” to inform women about the possibility. That would be desirable if it made some women feel better about their loss, without pressurizing others to carry to term who would feel better with a termination. So long as the implications were acceptable to society in general.

    What the mail reported was “Women whose babies develop fatal defects in the early stages of pregnancy will be given advice on going ahead with the birth so the NHS can harvest their organs”.

    The doctor said a few specialists were talking about whether X might be doable; the Mail reported that X will be done.

  27. The abortion rate appears to be around 20% of babies in utero are killed before birth in US and UK. I million abortions pa in US and 4m live births. 800k live births in UK and 200k abortions. Roughly.

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