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KILLING NEWBORNS (Out of the womb babies) IS NOW OKAY! 2 Out Of 2 Doctors Agree, It should be legalized?

Updated on May 5, 2012

The subject of whether or not abortion is moral has been argued for many years. Whether or not an unborn fetus is considered a life or a person is one of the key issues. Ethical philosophers have been struggling with the concept for years on both sides of the issue. But what about killing a baby well after birth? Should mothers who, for example, drown their children or have babies and throw them in dumpsters etc. be legally free to do so? There is a growing community of ethicists who think so. Two medical ethicists have recently written a paper which has been published in the Journal of Medical Ethics. This paper is titled: After-birth Abortion: Why Should The Baby Live? Albert Giubilini from the University of Milan, and Francesca Minerva from the University of Melbourne wrote the paper and stated that newborns and fetuses do not have the same moral status as actual persons. They also said that killing newborns should be legal in all cases that abortion is.

The issue of whether or not an infant is a person had been settled in ethical philosophy for quite some time before this paper was published. The verdict? An infant is not a person. The argument for this stems from the five traits accepted by the ethical world to be central to the concept of personhood in the moral sense.

1. consciousness (of objects and events external/internal to the being), and in particular the capacity to feel pain.

2. reasoning (the developed capacity to solve new and relatively complex problems)

3. self-motivated activity (activity which is relatively independent of either genetic or direct external control)

4. the capacity to communicate, by whatever means, messages of an indefinite variety of types, that is, not just with an indefinite number of possible contents, but on indefinitely many possible topics

5. the presence of self-concepts, and self-awareness.

So these medical ethicists say they have proven that a newborn infant has no more moral rights than a fetus. They argue that birth is only a change of location, not a change from non-personhood to personhood. They go into great detail and length in their paper on the logical conclusion they have come to. They feel that the laws should not punish mothers who kill their infants. They stated that even if the infant is not mentally deficient or physically disabled it should be legal to dispose of it.

My take on this? When you read everything they say in detail, then yes it makes sense, in a purely LOGICAL way. We are not Vulcans! We have emotions and we have them for a reason. When my emotions scream that this is wrong I think I will listen to them. If these guys were just writing a paper and wanted the their peers and others to accept the logic of their statement, then fine. We should be free in this world to study concepts such as this and come to voice conclusions. But to actually push for this to become legal?

Crazy. No matter what age and condition of the mind a human being is in, they deserve the chance to live. I feel that the potential of personhood is enough to not consider this. We consider the needless killing of a puppy or kitten to be a crime in the U.S. It is called animal abuse. Why would it be okay to kill a newborn but not an animal? Would puppy and kitten killing become legal as well? We could have You Tube videos of kittens being killed. “Batter up Billy, this one is so fat and furry, this is real “soft” ball.” I mean, c’mon.

Some people will not even consider the philosophical deepness of this subject to even look at the other side. Emotion will take over and they will lash out instantly against the subject. That is understandable, but medical and philosophical ethicists are only looking at the subject as if they are unattached. They see it as something to be analyzed on a different level. They feel that if they have proved a fetus is not a person and has no moral aspects or responsibilities, and have none of the traits that constitute a person, than they do not have personhood and by that argument, neither does an infant.

I appreciate that they want to look at things from a different perspective but to want to legalize killing your baby? What would be the point of propagating at that point? Maybe these guys’ thinking is so advanced it is beyond me and you. Who knows. If it is, then they should have kept their mouths shut because if infanticide was legalized sh*t would get crazy up in here.

The human race is so immature in so many ways how could we handle something like that? (If we ever wanted it for some reason). The mothers that want to kill their babies would not have to hold back for selfish reasons like being imprisoned for their actions. Yes there would be a slippery slope, damn right, you know it.

The child murderers would rejoice. There are already sick sick dudes out there who rape babies. This would be free reign wouldn’t you say? Sick pedophiles out there saying who cares they aren’t people, abuse them six ways from sunday, who cares? It’s legal. Didn’t think of that did you Al and Fran? Just got lost in the wonderful vortex of logical ultra logic. They probably obsessed so much about this they put emotional blocks on and were unable to take them off. They stayed up nights trying to solve this matter in the most logical, practical way and BINGO! They ran with their answers. Like a panicked horse wearing blinders they charged straight forward and off the cliff, dragging their wagon of sanity with them.

Here's a link to a news article about it:


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    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 4 years ago from California

      Thanks Bethany, I totally agree! See ya at work tomorrow, haha!

    • profile image

      Bethany 4 years ago

      Loved your take on this and found your comparing us to Vulcans awesome haha it's so true! Humanity is disgusting where this subject is concerned and in general really.. This was interesting and I really liked it.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      Thank you Sparklea! I'm glad you saw what I saw in that article. I was only reporting what was going on! Thank you so much for your support. :)

    • Sparklea profile image

      Sparklea 5 years ago from Upstate New York

      CM Voted up, useful and interesting. I believe what you wrote should be shared with as many as possible. People need to be informed! You did an outstanding job with your research, and I also read the link you included. I believe this is a terrific hub, and you get kudos from me for getting the word out on this controversial topic. You are courageous, and I so admire you for that! Blessings, Sparklea :)

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      I think you hit the nail on the head Max. There is always something they want right? I just thought it all seemed so weird.

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      CM, you are right, exactly! That's what bothers me in the first place, why they even raise this question when by all means of common sense it just sounds like a murder justification covered up by so-called scientific hullabaloo studies. There is always some hidden undercurrent for these debates. It reminds me of sophism, when everything appears logical while being totally false. While to us, relatively normal people this subject sounds totally horrific, those off the rocker ethicists/moralists try to make it light, what do they plan to gain from it? Some free bodies for experiments, free organs? I can't even think of it without the blood freezing in my veins, just opens the floodgate to disaster. It only needs to create a precedent.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      Thank you Max! Thanks for writing a comment that has something to do with the article.

      Yes, I see your point about the parallel with abortion but the theory of whether a baby has moral responsibility and has personhood or not (Which would settle the issue of the morality of infanticide in philosophy),has been argued by ethicists/moralists for so many years now.

      They get really really deep and abstract and logical to the point of absurdity. This issue in ethics, while related to abortion, is a completely seperate issue to them and they just used abortion in an attempt to make their theory about infants look the same as abortion.

      I studied this subject a lot in my ethical philosophy class and there were many different ethicists, modern and otherwise who wrote papers on the issue of infants being considered a person or not. It seems kinda crazy to even WANT to be right about that, haha.

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      I read about it over internet too, the subject is seriously disturbing and scary to the core. I think it is sort of a double edged sword. Those scientists are clearly out of their minds and totally lost contact with reality, I think they were tipped to publish this article for the purpose of manipulating the subject of abortion. I doubt that even hypothetically their proposition would ever be taken seriously but they rocked the cradle and gained attention and there is a parallel was drawn with abortion, though these are two different subjects it is still a manipulation that we'll see growing soon enough in the media.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      @Dr Billy Kidd: Thank you for your comment Dr. I don't think this man and woman doctors had their paper published in the Journal of Medical Ethics to frighten people. Perhaps they did it for some kind of recognition from the ethical world, I don't know. They did it however and they believe what they say. Here's a link to a story about it:

    • Dr Billy Kidd profile image

      Dr Billy Kidd 5 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      I'm a shrink and we can't even say "boo" without getting stuck with a law suit. Just speaking in a positive fashion about killing a newborn would get most of us fired and our licenses to practice pulled. It doesn't matter what some idiot said to frighten people.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      I think I better change the title of this hub. I want to hear what people think about the doctors stating that killing children OUT of the womb should be legal. Let's forget anything about fetuses please. The main point was about the statement that a baby is not a person and therefore killing one is morally okay and should be legalized. Just babies, kicking, squalling, OUT OF THE WOMB, alive in the world, children. Those ones.

      I appreciate your comment Christian, but this need not even be a parent of a child. Some stranger who never copulated in his/her life could walk up to someone's bundled up baby and kill it and it would be legal.(or at least not murder). That is what these ethicists are talking about.

    • Christian L Perry profile image

      Christian L Perry 5 years ago

      It is a simple issue. The killing of a child, man or woman, fetus or infant is based on selfish reasoning. Although most times this selfish reasoning is sugar coated under the guise of what would be best for the child, yet the reality is the decision comes down to the parents. There are ways to ensure sexual relations do not garner a child, if two people between them cannot be responsible enough to be proactive about their pregnancy how are they then responsible enough to make a life or death decision? Accountability and honor even in the face of mistakes, adversity and/or change.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      @ccrug: If you read the whole hub, am I to understand that you agree with the Medical Ethicists who say that killing a 3 month old baby for example, is okay and should be legal?

      I've never been all heavy into the abortion debate, and I wouldn't even write a hub about that, but when these guys are talking about actually killing your children in their cribs, I mean, I don't know but it sounds a little crazy to me. Maybe I'm wrong.

    • CM Sullivan profile image

      CM Sullivan 5 years ago from California

      @ccrug: First of all, I'm not a pro-lifer. Second, what hub did you read? Maybe you should have read the whole thing before you jump to conclusions. You obviously didn't read my take on it either. It was about killing babies OUTSIDE the womb. Well after birth.

      I was only reporting what really happened and then giving my opinion on it. Wow, it had nothing to do with abortion. It had to do with these doctors saying killing babies should be legal. I am actually for women having the choice not to incubate a fetus if they don't want to. I would not want to have an abortion personally, but that is my choice and that's what it's all about isn't it? Choice.

    • ccrugg profile image

      ccrugg 5 years ago

      Once more a man who is clueless attempts to think he should have an opinion in what women do with their bodies and whether they carry a fetus to term.

      To begin, there is no person who advocates for choice who believes killing newborns is acceptable. What is acceptable is a woman's right to choose, for whatever reason compels her, whether she completes the pregnancy to its conclusion with the birth of a child.

      The issue has never been whether a fetus represents life. This issue has been whether the formation of a collection of cells that is forming a fetus have more rights than that of the "host", in this case the mother's body. Pro-life individuals say yes, the fetus has more rights than the mother.

      I have never understood the pro-life's preference for the potential of life over the reality of life. They relish every instance of a choice to maintain a pregnancy when abortion was once an option, but ignore the suffering of those who are already here.

      Just because it helps you to sleep better at night thinking you're saving babies does not mean you have a right to decide what a woman does with her body. You don't like the incidence of abortion? Try instructing men how to prevent unplanned pregnancies, so individuals like you can stay out of the decisions of women. If you're not a foster parent or have not adopted a child you are just another hypocrite claiming moral superiority over the circumstances or choices of another.

      I am sick of this discussion which was settled by the high court 39 years ago. If you don't like abortion, don't get anyone pregnant without planning to raise the child. That's as far as your actions and opinions in this matter are warranted.

      And for the record, I've never had an abortion. The women I've known, however, who did never arrived at the choice lightly or easily. All people like you do is reinforce a stereotype that is incorrect that women want abortion legal because it's easier than being responsible for birth control. And that we think babies are fair game for early death. You really should be ashamed of yourself. This was an awful Hub.