UPDATE: The forced abortion decision has been overturned on appeal.
On Friday, a British judge ordered an abortion for a disabled woman who is currently 22 weeks pregnant. The woman protested, along with her mother and her social worker, but the judge did not seem to care.
The Roman Catholic woman, who is unnamed, has had developmental issues. Mentally, she is about the age of a six to nine year old. How the pregnancy came about in the first place is still being investigated. However, the termination of the baby, who is nearly viable outside of the womb at this point, is plain wrong.
Justice Nathalie Lieven admits in the ruling of the “heartbreaking” case that it’s an “immense intrusion” to order the abortion against the woman’s will, but argued that it’s in the best interest of the woman.
She has been described as being in her 20s and is in the care of an NHS trust, as part of the country’s National Health Service.
The woman’s mother, a former midwife, opposes the abortion procedure and told the court that she could take care of the child with the support from the daughter, Sky News reported.
A social worker who works with the woman also said the pregnancy should not be terminated.
“I am acutely conscious of the fact that for the State to order a woman to have a termination where it appears that she doesn’t want it is an immense intrusion,” the judge said. “I have to operate in [her] best interests, not on society’s views of termination.”
She added that she does not believe the woman has the mental capacity to make her own decisions. Therefore she made the decision for her.
“I think she would like to have a baby in the same way she would like to have a nice doll,” Justice Lieven said, and noted that she believes childbirth would be more traumatic than aborting the baby.
“Pregnancy, although real to her, doesn’t have a baby outside her body she can touch,” Lieven concluded.
What do you think about this ruling?