At the Intersection of Abortion and Disability

Abortion rights, eugenics, and disability have an intersection I wish didn’t exist. Pro-choice advocates often use eugenics-based arguments to get people to understand disability. Because, “who would want to be disabled?” “Having a disabled child is hard, for the parents and the child.” But it’s more of a societal problem. Society uses eugenics, pity, evolution, etc. to stigmatize disabled people. Society doesn’t provide the resources for disabled people, of all severities and kinds, and that’s what’s actually hard about taking care of a disabled child. Worrying about medical bills (because we don’t have universal healthcare), worrying about your child’s ability to be independent (because being independent is part of the American Dream we are brainwashed with, and is related to the idea of being “a productive member of society”), and so many other things. Society doesn’t provide the resources that would make it possible for parents to “have the heart” to care for a disabled child. There are articles and videos going around about the Zika virus and other similar disabilities, and they’re about abortion. Whether it’s trying to show that most people support aborting these disabled individuals, or trying to show how “hard” it is to have such a child, the point is saying disability is a valid reason to abort a fetus. I’m pro-choice, but when disability is brought in, I can’t fall for that. I’d be a hypocrite. I’d be saying some lives are worth more than others. I’d be saying some lives are worth living more than others. It’s shameful that supposedly feminist circles bring disability into their pro-choice argument. That’s not getting at the real problem. The problem isn’t disabled children, but the ableist and capitalist society we live in.

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