Court Bans Down Syndrome Abortions — ‘No Absolute Right to Abortion’

In 2017, Ohio barred abortionists from killing unborn babies if he or she knows that the pregnant woman is seeking an abortion based on a test or diagnosis that indicates Down syndrome, or whether the woman has any other reason to believe her unborn baby has Down syndrome.

When such measures become law, abortion advocates start filing lawsuits. As a result, a lower court issued an injunction against the law. But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit this week upheld the law by a vote of 9-7.

Delivering the court’s opinion, Judge Alice Batchelder said, “There is no absolute or per se right to an abortion based on the stage of the pregnancy…In our view, the effect of H.B. 214 on this woman is to deny her the doctor of her choosing when, and only when, that doctor of her choosing is a doctor who knows that her reason for the abortion is because she does not want a child with Down syndrome.”

In a concurring opinion, Judge Richard Griffin said he wrote separately “to emphasize Ohio’s compelling state interest in prohibiting its physicians from knowingly engaging in the practice of eugenics.”

Justice Clarence Thomas discussed eugenics in a 2019 Supreme Court case about a pro-life law in Indiana, contending that the government has a compelling interest in preventing abortion from becoming a tool of modern-day eugenics.

Justice Griffin echoed the sentiment. “Many think that eugenics ended with the horrors of the Holocaust. Unfortunately, it did not. The philosophy and the pure evil that motivated Hitler and Nazi Germany to murder millions of innocent lives continues today. Eugenics was the root of the Holocaust and is a motivation for many of the selective abortions that occur today.”

This decision is a victory for the pro-life movement. Abortion advocates will appeal the decision, and the U.S. Supreme Court might be dealing with abortion once again.

Photo credit: Rich Johnson (Creative Commons) – Some rights reserved

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