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Ohio House votes to ban abortions on babies with Down syndrome

Fr. Mark Hodges Fr. Mark Hodges

COLUMBUS, Ohio, November 2, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — The Ohio House overwhelmingly passed a bill outlawing aborting a child because of a possible Down syndrome diagnosis.

The Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act (HB 214) bans abortionists from terminating a pregnancy based on prenatal prediction of Down syndrome. The Ohio Senate has not yet acted on the bill.

Co-sponsor Rep. Sarah LaTourette, R-Chesterland, says the bill stops lethal discrimination against children with Down syndrome.

“This bill is about so much more than abortion,” LaTourette explained. “It’s about discriminating against some of our most vulnerable, discriminating against an unborn child simply because they might have a Down syndrome diagnosis. That’s something that I find absolutely unacceptable.”

“Today’s vote is a vote against modern-day eugenics, plain and simple,” Ohio Right to Life’s Mike Gonidakis stated in a press release. “While aborting a human child is always wrong, we should all agree that there is something particularly egregious about targeting babies with disabilities for destruction.”

“After seeing the horrors of eugenics play out in the 20th century, it is appalling that this legislation is even up for debate,” the pro-life president added.

Planned Parenthood is asking its supporters to fight HB 214, calling the legislation an “awful bill“ that “do(es) nothing to improve or protect patient’s health.”

Around the world, a diagnosis of possible Down syndrome is often a death sentence. In Iceland, officials boast about having eradicated Down syndrome as the result of national promotion of abortion. Fully 100 percent of preborn babies showing the possibility of Down syndrome are terminated in the womb. Nearly the same is true in Denmark, where 98 percent are aborted.

Down syndrome is genetic. One in 691 babies is born with Down syndrome. The cause is not known, but it can be detected in the womb or after birth to help the child therapeutically.

Live Action reported that parents “are not informed of the advances in science and medicine that allow people with Down syndrome to lead successful lives. Today, people with Down syndrome receive equal education alongside their peers, and many live on their own, get married, and hold jobs.”

Last week, Down advocate Frank Stephens testified before a congressional committee that those with Down syndrome have fulfilling lives that are definitely worth living.

Amniocentesis testing can be wrong, and newer, less invasive testing gives a false “positive” 50 percent of the time or more. The Boston Globe published a major study by the New England Center for Investigative Reporting that concluded “hundreds” of parents are aborting healthy babies.

“We have an obligation to protect our friends with Down syndrome, not only because they can teach us to be a more loving and empathetic society, but because they, like all of us, are endowed with the fundamental right to life,” Gonidakis said. “Ohio is paving the way for a society that stands up to discrimination and defends the most vulnerable among us.”

Penalties for violating the proposed law include the abortionist losing his or her license to practice in Ohio and up to 18 months in jail, in addition to personal liability costs.

As the Ohio senate considers the Down Syndrome Non-Discrimination Act, Ohio Right to Life asks pro-lifers to sign a petition urging senators to pass the HB 214.

The bill is co-sponsored with LaTourette by Rep. Derek Merrin, R-Monclova Township.

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