NRL News


by | Sep 15, 2011

By Dave Andrusko

Pro-Life President Ronald Reagan

All week long National Right to Life President and Pro-Life Perspective host Carol Tobias has illuminated President Ronald Reagan’s invaluable contribution to our Movement and to the cause of unborn children using quotes from his historic book, “Abortion and the Conscience of a Nation.” Today Mrs. Tobias zones in on the continuity that exists between abortion and infanticide, reminding those who may not have been active in the 1980s how courageously, how diligently President Reagan fought infanticide.

The issue, she tells us, was joined when an Indiana baby was born with Down syndrome. The child had an easily correctable esophageal problem which prevented him from being able to eat. But rather than make the repair, the parents allowed their child to starve to death.

In his book, the President explained the linkage

“The real question today is not when human life begins, but, What is the value of human life? The abortionist who reassembles the arms and legs of a tiny baby to make sure all its parts have been torn from its mother’s body can hardly doubt whether it is a human being. The real question for him and for all of us is whether that tiny human life has a God-given right to be protected by the law — the same right we have.

“What more dramatic confirmation could we have of the real issue than the Baby Doe case in Bloomington, Indiana? The death of that tiny infant tore at the hearts of all Americans because the child was undeniably a live human being — one lying helpless before the eyes of the doctors and the eyes of the nation. The real issue for the courts was not whether Baby Doe was a human being. The real issue was whether to protect the life of a human being who had Down’s syndrome, who would probably be mentally handicapped, but who needed a routine surgical procedure to unblock his esophagus and allow him to eat. A doctor testified to the presiding judge that, even with his physical problem corrected, Baby Doe would have a ‘non-existent’ possibility for “a minimally adequate quality of life” — in other words, that retardation was the equivalent of a crime deserving the death penalty. The judge let Baby Doe starve and die, and the Indiana Supreme Court sanctioned his decision.”

President Reagan fought the medical establishment to bring legal protection to these undeniably BORN human beings. I remember like it was yesterday how he directed the Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services to apply civil rights regulations to protect children born with handicaps. Fiercely opposed, he never waivered. In many ways it was President Reagan’s finest pro-life hour.

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