Infanticide has a long history, and several cultures have routinely practiced it for several reasons including birth control, to destroy handicapped individuals seen as unfit and to kill female children because of cultural preference for males. While infanticide is currently considered a much bigger taboo than abortion, it still takes place both in the U.S. and in other countries around the world.
Withholding Treatment From Disabled Infants
In 1982, an infant with Down Syndrome known as Baby Doe was born in Indiana with a birth defect that was correctible with surgery. The parents agreed with the suggestion from their doctor that allowing their child to die of starvation was an acceptable “treatment.” After two court cases and six days, Baby Doe died. The case touched off a debate about the treatment of disabled infants and parents’ ability to withhold life-saving care from children.
Aborted Babies Born-Alive
There have been cases around the country in which children have survived abortion attempts and then were left to die. Jill Stanek, a nurse who used to work in the Chicago-area Christ Hospital, discovered in 1999 that her hospital was doing that and brought the atrocity to national attention with her witness. Stanek testified in front of the U.S. Congress that she and her colleagues witnessed many cases where children were left to die in soiled linen closets and on cold metal scales. She once held an aborted child for close to an hour while he died because the hospital refused to treat him. Michigan has addressed this issue with laws to protect infants in similar situations.
The Kermit Gosnell Case
The grand jury report in the Kermit Gosnell murder trial is a detailed look into the grotesque conditions to which the Philadelphia abortionist subjected women and infants. The doctor was convicted of murder in the death of one patient due to a botched abortion, and several infanticides. One employee testified that hundreds of born-alive children were killed in his clinic.
Michigan’s Safe Delivery Law
Michigan law allows mothers to confidentially deliver unharmed newborns up to 72 hours old to designated Emergency Service Providers without legal repercussions for child abandonment. Emergency Service Providers include employees of a fire department, hospital or police station, or paramedics or emergency medical technicians.
Born Alive Infant Protection Act
This law addresses cases where failed late-term abortions result in children being born alive. The law ensures that newborns are afforded all of the rights of legal personhood including life-sustaining treatment or humane comfort care for those too young to survive.
Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act
In this gruesome procedure, an infant is partially-born until only her head is left in the birth canal, and then her head is stabbed and her brains suctioned out. Both federal and Michigan law bans this barbaric procedure.