Culture

The Corner

UK: Abortions for Cleft Lip, Palate Up in Past Five Years

Grim news out of the United Kingdom:

Abortions of babies with a minor facial deformity have nearly tripled in the past five years, official figures show. . . .

New government figures show 30 babies were aborted in the past three years because they had a cleft lip or palate.

Just four abortions were carried out for this reason in 2011 and in 2012. This figure jumped to nine in 2013, ten in 2014 and 11 last year, according to statistics released by the Department of Health. [Daily Mail]

These numbers are very small – for context, there are 200,000 abortions in the U.K. annually — so the variation might well be random. But if this is the beginning of a trend, it’s an especially troubling one. Abortion as such is an evil, but its use as a pruning mechanism — these babies are acceptable, these aren’t — is eugenics, plain and simple. I fear for the society that tolerates abortion. I fear even more for the society that uses abortion as an instrument for social engineering.

Then again, in practice, the two are never really distinct.

Ian Tuttle — Ian Tuttle is the former Thomas L. Rhodes Journalism Fellow at the National Review Institute.

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