Or, in which I rage-read Ross Douthat as he attempts to link mapping of the human genome, prospective parents who choose to abort fetuses with Down Syndrome, historical eugenics supports, with current-day liberals. Slimy-yet-sophisticated!
In 90 percent of cases, a positive test for Down syndrome leads to an abortion. It is hard to imagine that more expansive knowledge won’t lead to similar forms of prenatal selection on an ever-more-significant scale.
Is this sort of “liberal eugenics,” in which the agents of reproductive selection are parents rather than the state, entirely different from the eugenics of Fisher’s era, which forced sterilization on unwilling men and women? Like so many of our debates about reproductive ethics, that question hinges on what one thinks about the moral status of the fetus.