Today is

   "A word to the wise ain't necessary --  
          it's the stupid ones that need the advice."
					-Bill Cosby

Monday, May 07, 2007

"An abortion worth mourning"

Last night, for about two minutes, I posted an angry reaction to an editorial by Dan Neil in the Los Angeles Times. After some second thoughts and some gentle suggestions from my gentle husband, I removed the post.

Eddie E. at Serving Bread has reacted to the same article with sadness, but without rancor. He says some of the things that I was too angry to say:

. . . I am writing this post to mourn for the two aborted boys that no one else (certainly not the Neils) is mourning or grieving.

The Neils made a choice to pursue in-vitro fertilization. They made a choice to have children later in life (Neil says he is 47 but doesn’t say the age of his wife). And they made a choice to abort the two fetuses because four could be unhealthy for the wife. And they made a choice of aborting the male ones because a male fetus is four times more likely to develop autism when the father is older. Rather than live with certain consequences of life, Dan Neil communicates an aspect of our culture that proclaims that life revolves only around our choices and that we have a right to control all of the consequences of our decisions.

Dan Neil says that he and his wife feel no guilt or remorse, and not even much sadness, about being "forced" to abort their sons. It's charitable of Eddie E. to feel it for them, and though I haven't quite managed to rid myself of the anger I felt when I originally read the editorial, I'm at least heartened and inspired by Eddie E.'s example.


Blogger alex said...

This seems to be an emotional subject for many people. As for me, the whole "grieving" part sounds downright weird.

I accept the ability of someone to grieve for a person they have never met - perhaps a famous writer, actor, etc. On the other hand, the ability to grieve for someone you have never met, nor heard of before - that sounds doubtful to me. At most, you should be able to feel a theoretical sort of sadness at the thought of the death of a human being who, perhaps, had so much more to do in life. But not too much sadness; millions of people die every day of old age, and one cannot possibly feel much sadness for every single one of them. And then, grieving for a fetus that, needless to say, one has never even seen? Whatever "grieving" means in this context, it cannot be a very emotional thing. Weird is all I can say.

May 07, 2007 12:41 PM  
Blogger alex said...

...on second though, maybe the words "grieving" and "mourning" jumped out at me too much. Perhaps there's no reason these words can't be used to denote a theoretical, impersonal sort of sadness.

May 07, 2007 12:43 PM  

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