Letter to The Times
Sir, Caitlin Moran maintains (Magazine, Jan 11) that because abortion is widespread and has a long history, we should support its continuance. Would she also have us defend other issues, like poverty, child abuse or murder, on the same grounds?
Moreover, her suggestion that Hippocrates recommended abortion is wrong. The Hippocratic oath states that, ‘I will give no deadly drug to any, though it be asked of me, nor will I counsel such, and especially I will not aid a woman to procure abortion.’
Moran tellingly concentrates on the woman’s right to abortion, to the exclusion of the unborn child’s right to life. However, a doctor attending a pregnant woman is confronted by two patients, yet abortion kills one of them – that is why abortion is such bad medicine.
The way forward in our abortion-fixated world is to seek to limit the practice – nobody wants more. At various times this will involve repeal or tightening of relevant laws. At all times this will require practical help and genuine charity for those with unwanted pregnancies. Women and their unborn children deserve nothing less. Substandard customs, like abortion, need amending not defending.
DR JOHN R LING