Crack Babies - Ethical Questions

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Krogenar
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Crack Babies - Ethical Questions

Postby Krogenar » Tue Oct 08, 2002 12:22 pm

Here's a very interesting development on a controversial issue. Is it ethical for someone to offer crack-addicted mothers a $200 dollar check in exchange for either long-term contraceptive use (an implant in their arm) or tubal ligation (also known as 'tying their tubes').

This is exactly what one California woman is doing. Here's the article I found.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1999/09/07/MN81261.DTL



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- Krogenar
Musi
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Postby Musi » Tue Oct 08, 2002 12:51 pm

I don't see what's wrong with it if these women are doing it of their own free will. Now if they were to go around searching for pregnant women who get caught using drugs, that's a different matter. I just feel bad for the kids that are being brought into this world that aren't wanted and who are really sick Image

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Musi "Do you have any spare chocolate" Ailis
Corth
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Postby Corth » Tue Oct 08, 2002 1:23 pm

This reminds me of a great scene from the recent Sopranos episode. A student at NYU proudly brags to Meadow Soprano (in a serious tone), while trying to convince her to join some sort of legal aid club, that she had successfully reunited a number of crack babies with their biological mothers.

I'm glad you framed the issue as one of ethics rather than law. I doubt an agreement to undergo a tubal ligation surgery would be enforcable in court as a contract. But thats not really what matters is it? The real question is whether the people advocating these procedures and providing an incentive for women to undergo them are doing something noble or hideous.

There is a definate racial aspect to such a program. Crack has been for years associated with minorities. There is something Orwellian about a scenario where genocide is committed against a minority group by taking away their ability to procreate. On the other hand, the program, on its face, is neutral, because any crack-abusing woman would qualify, regardless of race. And of course, nobody is being coerced into giving up their reproductive freedom. The program is entirely voluntary and nobody is forcing a woman to take part in it. But still, you know that the civil libertarian types have grave concerns, and some might have even a little bit of merit. Whenever you talk about targeting a group of people for loss of reproductive rights, you are flirting with potential abuse.

However, when all is said and done, I could not agree with this program more emphatically. The unfortunate phenomonon of 'crack babies' is an enormous drain on society and public resources. These children need all sorts of special care, and its often expensive and paid for by the government with our tax dollars. They will never grow up to be a productive member of society because they are physically incapable of doing so. Its hard enough for someone that is born poor to overcome their innate hardships... add physical or mental disability to the mix and the kid doesn't stand a chance. Many of them will become criminals in their own right and thus continue to be a drag on society.

I think that anyone who would put up their own money to help prevent these children from being born should be greatly admired. I would hope that such funds could be deducted from a tax return as a charitable expense, because it is indeed charity. These people are providing a great service to society and they should be praised for it. As long as they are truthful about their motives, and their criteria for selecting candidates is neutral as to religion, race, etc, I can see no ethical problems here.

Corth

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Goddamned slippery mage.
kragt
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Postby kragt » Tue Oct 08, 2002 2:42 pm

I am a Kragt baby.

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Not just good, good enough.

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