“Infanticide is illegal everywhere in America.” So repeated Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) when asked why babies born alive after a botched abortion could not receive healthcare.

In 1915, Baby Bollinger was born paralyzed on one side, with one ear not functioning and the other missing the outer portion, and his cheek attached to his shoulder. Critically, he did not have an anus and would die unless one was surgically created. The surgeon, 45-year-old Harry Haiselden, refused to operate.  A firm believer in eugenics, he felt it was morally wrong to save a “defective” child that would be a burden on the family and society and corrupt the human race. He unilaterally decided Baby Bollinger was better off dead.

He held a press conference and later made the movie The Black Stork to tell the country so. The story became a three-year media sensation, until Haiselden died suddenly of a stroke in 1917, bringing eugenics and infanticide to the center of American thought.

Everyone–the media, Haiselden, his supporters, and his critics–referred to this practice as infanticide. It did not matter whether doctors actively killed the child (by “forgetting to tie the [umbilical] cord” or by “smothering, strangulating, or dividing” as some doctors wrote in response) or passively let it die. What mattered was why. Whether active or passive, euthanasia of an unwanted infant is infanticide. Period.

Today, legislators claim that the Roe act is not infanticide, that those who oppose it are using “inflated language“. Legislators do not have the guts that Haiselden, or Kevorkian, had–to say what is really on their minds. They know the voters would reject it, so they euphemize it to make it palatable. We must have none of it.

How is it that they can so easily hide what could so clearly be seen 100 years ago? Because since that time, we have moved infanticide from the birthing room to the mother’s womb, and with that shift infanticide has become acceptable. Abortion now is what infanticide was. The killing of an unwanted or defective child is an abortion–we no longer recognize it as infanticide.

When we consider the high rate of children with Down Syndrome and other “defects”, we realize that we have become a nation that embraces eugenics. Once mothers and doctors could terminate children’s lives for any reason whatsoever, eugenics became normalized, and infanticide lost its meaning. Its only vestige is actively killing the child after birth–putting the scissors into the base of an infant’s neck just a few seconds later when the head is outside the womb instead of in it.

In 2002, President George W. Bush signed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which declared that the words “person,” “human being,” “child,” and “individual” shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive (as defined in this Act) at any stage of development. The Massachusetts Roe Act, Senate bill 1209, unquestionably expands infanticide:

  • Currently, Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 112, Section 12P says, If an abortion is performed pursuant to section twelve M, the physician performing the abortion shall take all reasonable steps, both during and subsequent to the abortion, in keeping with good medical practice, consistent with the procedure being used, to preserve the life and health of the aborted child. Such steps shall include the presence of life-supporting equipment, as defined by the department of public health, in the room where the abortion is to be performed.
  • The MA Roe Act completely removes the above section, so doctors can now leave infants to die if they didn’t die as they intended.

Congress made multiple attempts to prevent this expansion of legalized infanticide through the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. If enacted, “This bill amends the federal criminal code to require any health care practitioner who is present when a child is born alive following an abortion or attempted abortion to:

  • exercise the same degree of care as reasonably provided to any other child born alive at the same gestational age, and
  • ensure that such child is immediately admitted to a hospital.

Consideration of the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act has been repeatedly blocked by Democratic senators, including Elizabeth Warren. Infanticide is legal everywhere in America since Roe v. Wade, and Elizabeth Warren wants to include babies born alive as fair game. This opens wide the door to infant euthanasia.

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