fbpx
Select Page

Newly created artificial wombs in mice raise concerns among abortion supporters

Concerns have been raised by abortion supporters after scientists in Israel announced that they have managed to gestate more than a thousand mice in artificial wombs.

At five days, the mice embryos were removed from their mothers’ wombs and placed in artificial wombs for another six days. This took the mice embryos to about the mid-point of their development in utero.

The primary motive for such technology is supposedly to help protect babies who are born extremely prematurely and who are unable to survive outside of the womb. However, some pro-abortion advocates are concerned about the potential implications that this technology has for the abortion debate.

The 24-week abortion limit in the UK was originally set based on the ability of the baby to survive outside of the womb. Now, the potential of artificial wombs for humans is thought to bring this cut-off into sharp focus.

Author and abortion supporter, Jenny Kleeman, writes: “What if all foetuses, and even embryos, are potentially viable because they could be gestated inside an artificial womb? Any unborn child could be considered to have a right to life”.

“[I]f unwanted babies could be “rescued” by technology – gestated inside an artificial womb and then given up for adoption – then abortion could be simultaneously pro-choice and “pro-life”. Why should a mother be able to decide to terminate an unwanted baby if an artificial womb can save its life?”

She goes on to say “the threat of this technology will have enormous potential to coerce and control pregnant women”.

Born before the abortion limit

Increasingly, the 24-week cut-off is being questioned because more and more babies are being born before or shortly after this limit and going on to survive. What is thought to be one of Scotland’s most premature babies was born almost two weeks below the current abortion limit. This means that, were she still in the womb, it would have been lawful to end her life by abortion. Now though, after four months in hospital, baby Sofia Viktoria Birina has gone home.

This is not an isolated incident as babies are continuing to be born before or shortly after the abortion limit in Great Britain and are going on to live and even thrive at greater rates than before. Studies suggest that the majority of premature babies grow up to be healthy adults without any major health problems.

A study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in October 2019, followed 2.56 million babies born in Sweden between 1973 and 1997, around six percent of whom were born prematurely.

Researchers compared the health data of the premature babies to those that had been born at full term. They found that 55% of premature babies had no serious chronic, physical, or mental health issues by early adulthood. This is compared to 63% for babies born at full term.

Additionally, with each passing decade, the odds of survival for a premature baby to adulthood have improved from about 91% of babies born in the 1970s to about 96% of those born in the 1990s.

The survival rate for extremely premature babies has doubled over the past decade, prompting new guidance allowing doctors to try to save babies born as early as 22 weeks into a pregnancy.

Right To Life UK spokesperson, Catherine Robinson, said: “Artificial wombs certainly do raise thorny ethical questions, but in relation to the abortion debate they are especially revealing. Abortion advocates’ reactions to artificial wombs show that they are not just concerned about the ‘freedom to not be pregnant’, but rather they want to make it legal to have the freedom to stop a child from living. This is not a case of ‘my body, my choice’, but ‘my child, my choice’. This is clearly shown through Kleeman’s worry that if artificial wombs were available, and someone was pregnant and did not want to be, the solution would be to remove the child from his/her mother’s womb and place that child in an artificial womb to continue his/her development”.

“If this solution is not acceptable, as Kleeman and other abortion advocates presumably think it is not, then we can see that abortion is not about the freedom to be pregnant or not, but about the freedom, once pregnant, to decide if one’s own unborn child lives or dies”.

“Abortion, of course, has always involved the ending of the life of a child. But artificial wombs make this end goal particularly clear. Kleeman herself asks the most pertinent question: ‘Why should a mother be able to decide to terminate an unwanted baby if an artificial womb can save its life?’ Why indeed?”

Help stop abortion up to birth for babies with disabilities including Down's syndrome & club foot

Article Syndication

Join other leading publications from around the world who syndicate our articles

Syndicate this article
Syndicate now

Dear reader

In 2020, the UK Government imposed an extreme abortion regime on Northern Ireland, which included a provision that legalised abortion right up to birth for disabilties including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot.

A new Bill has been launched at the Northern Ireland assembly that will remove the current provision that allows abortion for ‘severe fetal impairment’.

It is under these grounds in the regulations that babies with disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot can currently be singled out for abortion in Northern Ireland because of their disability and can be aborted right up to birth.

Before the new abortion regime was imposed on Northern Ireland in 2020, disability-selective abortion for conditions such as Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot was not legal and there was a culture of welcoming and supporting people with these disabilities rather than eliminating them.

This is reflected directly in the latest figures (2016) from the Department of Health in Northern Ireland, which show that while there were 52 children born with Down’s syndrome in Northern Ireland, in the same year only 1 child from Northern Ireland with Down’s syndrome was aborted in England and Wales. 

This contrasts with the situation in the rest of the United Kingdom where disability-selective abortion has been legal since 1967.

The latest available figures show that 90% of children diagnosed with Down’s syndrome before birth are aborted in England and Wales.

We are, therefore, asking people like you to take 30 seconds of your time and add your support to the campaign to stop abortion up to birth for disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot in Northern Ireland.

If you live in Northern Ireland: 
Ask your MLAs to vote to stop abortion up to birth for disabilities including Down’s syndrome, cleft lip and club foot:

If you live outside Northern Ireland: 
Show your support by signing this petition in support of the Bill:

Article Syndication

Join other leading publications from around the world who syndicate our articles

Help stop abortion up to birth for babies with disabilities including Down's syndrome & club foot

Syndicate this article
Syndicate now