By Miranda Willborg, Texas Right to Life
Every year, preborn Texas children with health challenges and projected disabilities experience pervasive discrimination.
This harsh reality substantiates the need for greater protection of preborn children with potential disabilities.
Part of the Texas Abolition Strategy (TAS), a Pro-Life Priority which lays out a permanent, legal way to abolish abortion, is the Preborn NonDiscrimination measure. When passed, the Preborn NonDiscrimination measure within TAS will prohibit discriminatory abortions performed on account of race, gender, or suspected disability.
Greg and Rochelle Degeyter are a Texas couple who have experienced this type of discrimination, which occurred during Rochelle’s pregnancy with twins Kenan and Nicolette.
Baby Kenan was projected to have scoliosis, which doctors attributed to intrauterine growth restriction. At Rochelle’s 31-week prenatal imaging appointment, however, the ultrasound revealed new frightening details about Kenan’s health.
In addition to scoliosis, doctors detected curved long bones, a misshapen head, and leg growth that had not surpassed the second percentile.
Like clockwork, the doctors raised the topic of abortion to Greg and Rochelle.
According to scientific research, twin babies are highly active at 31 weeks, tracking light and developing all five senses. At 31 weeks, babies are kicking their feet and sucking their tiny thumbs.
And yet, at 31 weeks, doctors would have spared one life and taken the other, all because of a suspected disability that they decided absolved the child’s life of all value.
The stress and tension of this appointment led Rochelle to experience preterm contractions the very next day. At her ensuing prenatal appointment, doctors discovered she was three centimeters dilated and sent her to the hospital without delay.
Less than two weeks later, Rochelle went into active labor, and her doctors performed a successful C-section. A few hours later, on Sunday morning—the Lord’s Day—Nicolette and Kenan entered the world. Both strong and beautiful.
There is an alarmingly influential segment of the medical community that makes the baseless argument that if a child is disabled, his or her life is not worth living. But no disability renders a child unworthy of care and treatment.
The Preborn NonDiscrimination provision within TAS seeks not only to provide equal protection for all preborn children, but also to make social and medical services readily available for families, like the Degeyters, when doctors portray a hopelessly dire outcome for their child.
The Texas Abolition Strategy (SB 1647) currently awaits scheduling for a full vote in the House upon the action of the House Committee on Calendars. Many members of the Legislature have communicated the will to move SB 1647 forward.
Please stand with the Degeyters and Texas Right to Life as we build safeguards to overthrow anti-Life forces and shelter the lives of innocent babies who cannot speak for themselves. Please contact your state representative today to urge them to bring to a vote and pass the Texas Abolition Strategy. By God’s grace, we will stand victorious in our fight for Life.