I am so sorry Mrs. Caldwell,” Doctor Benson said in a fatherly tone while he looked down at the young woman in the hospital bed. “We think it would be more advantageous if we terminate the life of your baby.”
Mary Caldwell’s face turned white. “W-what do you mean, doctor, terminate little Anthony’s life?”
Doctor Benson shook his head and pressed his lips together. “It’s no use, Mrs. Caldwell. Your baby, I mean-eh-Anthony, is too weak. You know he has Down’s syndrome. His heart has serious problems and we cannot guarantee he will ever be a happy child. We, the staff and the nurses, have come to the conclusion it will be better to terminate his life now before he becomes a burden to both you and society.”
Mary Caldwell blinked her eyes. My baby…a burden? Was she maybe in the middle of a bad dream and would she wake up soon? But no, this wasn’t a dream. Doctor Benson was clearly standing there next to her bed and hovered over her with his professional grin that seemed to say, “We know it’s difficult, Mrs.Caldwell, but we have no doubt you will understand.”
But Mary Caldwell did not understand; not at all. For a moment, she said nothing and then she spat out, “You don’t touch my baby!” She glared at Doctor Benson and even surprised herself. She was never that bold.Doctor Benson shifted from one foot to another and picked at his nose. “Well-eh…It’s really better for the baby…eh, Anthony…if he-”
“Dies?” interrupted Mary while her face turned red. “I thought doctors were supposed to help and heal, not to slice and kill. Didn’t you have to take the Hippocratic Oath?”
Doctor Benson’s eyes flashed. “Mrs. Caldwell, we don’t slice and kill. But unlike you, I am a realistic person. I am a capable doctor and I am just stating the facts. Your baby is not going to do anybody any good.”
But Mary Caldwell had heard enough and did not allow baby Anthony’s life to be terminated.
That was twenty years ago.
Today baby Anthony is no longer a baby. His siblings call him affectionately big brother Anthony. He does have Down’s syndrome and he does have a weak heart for which he needs constant special care. And yet everyone who comes in contact with Anthony gets touched by his warm smile that seems to brighten up the hardest of hearts.
“He is our pride and joy,” says Mary Caldwell. “He has given our life meaning and is literally an angel from heaven. The lessons we have learned from little Anthony are unmatched in any school.”
Does it always turn out as positive as in the case of little Anthony? Not necessarily. And yet, one thing is certain and that is that people who face life’s troubles with faith and who seek God’s help in times of trouble seem much better prepared to face hardships.
To the person of faith difficulties can serve as threats for a beautiful tapestry, but those who refuse to see life through the glasses of faith often end up angry and bitter and feel that life has giving them a raw and undeserved deal.
Bitter people often end up with a tapestry that is marred by ugly confusion and hopelessness and sadly the world is adding bloody stains to it by means of abortion and even eugenics.
Eugenics; what is that? Eugenics is the terminating of life after birth or the prevention of life in favour of the right genes. It was first named by Francis Galton in 1883. Oddly enough Mr.Galton was a cousin of Charles Darwin, whose theory of evolution has sadly, but successfully changed the worldview of society from a predominant Christian worldview in the 19th century, to the Godless society in which we live today.
At the roots of eugenics is the belief that the human race can be improved by advocating the right genetic traits. Consequently it also means mankind will have to get rid of those traits (or people) that are undesirable, by either terminating life or sterilizing those people who are not capable of passing on the right kind of genes.
To the person who does not believe in God and is convinced that life is the result of random evolutionary chance, such a philosophy may sound logical. After all, isn’t this the best way to help nature in its evolutionary course? What could be better than helping nature run its course?
But the consequences of such a mindset can be staggering.
Ultimately it means men will get to decide who may live and who should die, a role that should only be reserved for our Creator, who is all-wise and all-knowing, wisdom that we as humans seem to sorely lack.
A quote from Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood and a strong advocate of the science of eugenics, in her book The Pivot of Civilization, published in 1922, gives us a startling look at the mindset of those who hold the doctrine of Eugenics dear.
“Every feeble-minded girl or woman, especially of the moron class, should be segregated during the reproductive period. Otherwise, she is almost certain to bear imbecile children, who in turn are just as certain to breed other defectives. . . Moreover, when we realize that each feeble-minded person is a potential source of an endless progeny of defect, we prefer the policy of immediate sterilization, of making sure that parenthood is absolutely prohibited to the feeble-minded.”
For babies like little Anthony there’s little room in a world that is ruled by an atheistic mindset, and yet the joy he has brought into the lives of his parents seems to be unmatched. And what about the many other astounding examples of the so-called unwanted species?
Take Nick Vujicic for example. When Nick was born he had no arms or legs. In his misery, he contemplated suicide, but thanks to the prayers of his godly parents and the faith he found in Jesus, he decided to turn his life around and make something out of nothing. Now he is a famous evangelist, he got married, and is an encouragement to thousands of broken people with his message of hope and joy.
Wouldn’t it have been better for society at large if the doctor would have killed him right after birth, or aborted him even before birth? After all, it would have saved society a good sum of money and the lives of Nick’s parents would have been most certainly less complicated.
But God doesn’t always take the logical way. God does the unexpected and is the Master in making beautiful things out of ashes. With Him all things shall be well. The one ingredient needed is simple faith. Nobody is saying life is easy, but one thing is certain, “life in God’s eyes is very, very precious.”
The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away. Blessed is the name of the Lord, and remember that whatever we do and wherever we are, God is God and we are not. That says it all.
Decisions about life and death are areas in which faith in God is so vital and so necessary to sail our life’s boat safely through the jagged reefs barely visible on the surface.