Zealots of the Evangelical right are trying hard to get bills passed that would require heroic measures for babies born alive who lack the ability to live for more than a short time. To them, this cruelty is an extension of what they see as their “pro-life” stance. To do anything less than heroic measures is “infanticide”.
I read a powerful opinion piece to the contrary by a mother who had lost an infant hours after birth. She and her husband were aware, prior to the birth, that the newborn could not live very long. At birth, he was wrapped in a blanket and given to his parents to hold until death arrived.
I’m out of my usual routine, still in caregiver role, and I neither bookmarked the piece nor am I able to find it again. But here was the gist: turning a doomed newborn over to maximum medical intervention is a cruelty beyond measure at a point when the impending death is about to occur. Wrapping such a child in a blanket and giving him to his parents to hold isn’t infanticide; it’s the kindest path out of a terrible tragedy.
In some cognitive leap that eludes me, rabid anti-choice voters see making a big issue out of allowing a doomed infant to die as furthering the case for overturning Roe v. Wade.
I am repelled by zealots of any kind, especially those who wave the bible in defense of using the power of the state to inflict their religious beliefs on the rest of us.
Religious zealots aren’t the majority in this country, but they are single-issue focused, politically active, and backed by some powerful institutional forces — like Fox News and CPAC and the Republican Party. All have made women’s reproductive choice the hill they want to die on.