NBC News’s National Security reporter, Ken Dilanian, took a break from covering North Korea’s nuclear program and the Syrian civil war to applaud the “courage” of a fellow journo who advocated in a column for the abortion of children with disabilities.
The Washington Post deputy editorial page editor Ruth Marcus authored the March 9 column “I would’ve aborted a fetus with Down syndrome. Women need that right,” which argues against a new effort by pro-life groups to ban certain selective abortion practices.
In a show of solidarity, Dilanian linked to the column in a tweet — prompting outrage in his replies from a number of parents of children with Down syndrome.
— Ken Dilanian (@KenDilanianNBC) March 10, 2018
In her column, Marcus writes:
I have had two children; I was old enough, when I became pregnant, that it made sense to do the testing for Down syndrome. Back then, it was amniocentesis, performed after 15 weeks; now, chorionic villus sampling can provide a conclusive determination as early as nine weeks. I can say without hesitation that, tragic as it would have felt and ghastly as a second-trimester abortion would have been, I would have terminated those pregnancies had the testing come back positive. I would have grieved the loss and moved on.
She goes on to cite the statistic that “more than two-thirds of American women choose abortion in such circumstances,” and claims that this is the “point … of prenatal testing.”
Pro-life advocates don’t dispute this number but try to inform individuals through advertising campaigns and activism that many individuals with Down syndrome end up living pleasant and fulfilling lives.
Much of Marcus’s argument revolves around the fact that a disabled child “was not the child I wanted,” and offers studies showing the average IQs of individuals with Down syndrome as a justification.
Among the reactions Dilanian’s tweet generated were these:
Hmm, my oldest son has Down Sydrome. The absolute light of my life. Adorable is how he is described by everyone who meets him.
— mikemcconn (@mikemcconn) March 10, 2018
#SCOTUS has made terrible decisions throughout their history. Their green light doesn’t make killing your baby ok. Even if that baby will be an inconvenience to you. There is nothing “courageous” about killing your Down Syndrome baby. True courage is the opposite.
— Deplorable Gay Guy 🏳️🌈 (@TwiloGuy73) March 10, 2018
— Marc Nusser (@3mdive) March 10, 2018
There was also this particularly poignant response:
Emma. She was born with heart defects, dwarfism & developmental delays. She is physically disabled, handicapped. She has experienced unending surgeries and therapy while sufferring from an unknown diagnosis. She is the pure definition of courage and her mother is no different. pic.twitter.com/cKO6lPeEzS
— Mike Maze (@therealmikemaze) March 10, 2018
This report, by Joe Simonson, was cross posted by arrangement with the Daily Caller News Foundation.