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Ethical Dilemma Essay

1759 words - 8 pages

Do we have the right to choose whether a person lives or dies? Does it make it the right thing to do if a diagnosis of a fetal abnormality is introduced? These are choices that many couples face on a daily basis after getting their baby tested for deformities. In this paper, a woman’s struggle with the diagnosis of her baby having Down’s syndrome will be examined; both her option of abortion and exploring other possibilities besides abortion.
Ethical Dilemma
Susan is a woman of integrity. She has a successful career and decides to incorporate a family into her plan. After trying for several years, she finally gets pregnant. This is a life event which should be exciting for most ...view middle of the document...

(Blumberg B; et al., 1975, paragraph 1) Rikard states that a child with Down’s syndrome does not suffer. (Von Sydow, 2014, pg. 257). The term suffer is a universal term stating that the child has the disorder, not that the child actually suffers. Suffer has a negative connotation towards it and this is merely shining light on the interchangeable term of having a disorder rather than experiencing pain. Rikard goes on to say that it is the parents who might suffer, (Von Sydow, 2014, pg. 257) which is Susan’s real issue, but there are two more options that she can explore besides abortion. Those options included keeping the baby, or putting the baby up for adoption. Since Susan will be deciding to opt for life instead of killing, it will ease Susan’s uncomfortable feeling. However, both scenarios come with their own dilemmas which will be discussed in a later paragraph.
Core Beliefs
In a true Christian worldview, abortion is never an answer as it is considered murder. In fact, God finds it so unacceptable that He put it in the Ten Commandments as number six- you shall not murder. (Exodus 20:13 NIV) The core worldview on this matter should make the decision on aborting a fetus diagnosed with an abnormality easy. “Before [God] formed you in the womb [He] knew you, before you were born [He] set you apart.” (Jeremiah 1:5 NIV) It is clear that God does not agree with abortion. However, humanity through the Christian worldview has mixed views on this matter. A study in the United Kingdom examined different reasons for termination of pregnancy. It included both religious and non-religious people, with 48.5% being Church of England Christians. The poll found that the most agreed-upon reason was for the case of fetal abnormalities, with 42.9% believing abortion was the best option. (E. Abdel-Aziz et al., 2004, pg. 558) People profess their belief in God, but believe that women have the right to decide whether or not they will keep the baby or turn to abortion. It is clear why Susan is having such a hard time deciding what is best for her unborn child.
In an article written by scientists, a study was presented on the accuracy of the test for Down’s syndrome. The way a woman is tested is a combination of maternal age plus three biochemical markers. This test proved that of the markers given, the sensitivity is 60% and the false-positive rate is 5% (La Montagna, G; et al., 2005, paragraph 1) A false-positive rate of five percent means that Susan’s test results could be wrong. For this reason, the two options for resolution outlined should be considered more than abortion. These two options also coincide with the Christian worldview. Dean makes a good point when he said, “it is simply not your decision whether I live or die.” (Stretton, 2004, pg. 144) This statement is true. It is not our decision whether a baby should live or die, but instead God’s decision. Dan states that because we are made in the likeness of God, all...

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