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British Government Official Suggests Infanticide for Disabled Children

Bradley Mattes   |   February 20, 2004

London, England – A British government official has sparked outrage by suggesting that children with disabilities should be killed. John Harris, a member of the Human Genetics Commission, told an assembly at Westminster that he saw no distinction between a late-term abortion and killing a child with disabilities shortly after birth. “I don’t think infanticide is always unjustifiable,” he said. “There is a very widespread and accepted practice of infanticide in most countries.” Harris, who is a professor of bioethics at Manchester University also stated, he sees no “moral change” between the time a child is in the womb and a child is born. It is not “plausible to think that there is any moral change that occurs during the journey down the birth canal.” Harris has also previously indicated he supports the buying and selling of human organs for transplantation and sex-selection of children for social reasons. Harris also is a member of the ethics committee for the British Medical Association. Pro-life groups say he should be removed from the panel and no longer serve as an official advisor for the doctors group.

Remember Peter Singer? Singer, a professor at Princeton University, advocates killing disabled babies up to 28 days after birth. Singer was given the World Technology Award for Ethics in 2003 by the World Technology Network. Singer’s 1979 book, “Practical Ethics” states that children less than a month old have no human consciousness and that the parents should be allowed to kill their disabled children to end suffering and increase the family’s happiness. “Killing an infant is not morally equivalent to killing a person. Sometimes it is not wrong at all,” he wrote. Singer insists that animals should have the same value as humans and should not be discriminated against because they are not human. Previously he has also endorsed “consensual” sex between humans and animals.

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