disability rights


A Lawyer’s Turnaround on Baby Doe with Her Own Down Syndrome Baby

by Sarah Terzo   Janine Steck Huffman has a child with Down syndrome. But years before she gave birth to her son Nash, she was partly responsible for the legal starvation death of Baby Doe, another child with Down syndrome. Baby Doe was born in Bloomington, Indiana, in April 1982. Besides Down syndrome, he had…


#SayHisName: The Medical Murder of Michael Hickson

by Sophie Trist The death of forty-six-year-old Michael Hickson of Austin, Texas from Covid-19 exists at the intersection of several critical social justice conversations: pervasive prejudice within the medical system, the devaluing of disabled lives during the Covid-19 pandemic, and the catastrophic effects of the novel corona virus on Black and Brown communities. But apart…


Will I be Treated the Same Way Now?

Due to giving medical details, the author wishes to remain anonymous. I am a disabled woman with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), a disease that attacks the joints. I use a walker or a wheelchair in my daily life. I’m worried about where the medical field is heading. My home state of New Jersey has legalized assisted…


Women’s History Month: Jane Addams

Jane Addams is a notable follower of the consistent life ethic (before the term was coined). We offer a lengthy book excerpt, a shorter book excerpt, and a note from the exhibits at Hull House Museum. Condensed excerpt from ProLife Feminism: Yesterday and Today, pp. 120-126 The Nonviolent Power of the Maternal Body Politic: Jane…


How Euthanasia and Poverty Threaten the Disabled

by Sarah Terzo This is Part 2 of 2. Part 1 was How Ableism Led (and Leads) to Abortion Now that abortion has become entrenched in our culture, people are pushing for legalizing suicide. Currently in the United States, usually if someone wants to commit suicide, the police can be called. Suicidal persons will be…


How Ableism Led (and Leads) to Abortion

by Sarah Terzo   Part 1 of 2; Part 2 is How Euthanasia and Poverty Threaten the Disabled.   To be truly pro-life is to value all human beings. People are valuable not because of what we can do but because of what we are: human beings. For pro-lifers, people are not judged by how…


The Jukes and Kallikaks “Studies”

by John Cavanaugh-O’Keefe Editor’s note: this is an excerpt from the book The Roots of Racism and Abortion: An Exploration of Eugenics, pp. 52-54 In 1877, Richard Dugdale published a study of a family whom he called the “Jukes” family. He referred to a mother several generations back in the family as “Margaret, the mother…


More than Double the Trouble: Another Way of Connecting

by Rachel MacNair An important idea for understanding how social injustice works is making the rounds. It’s called “intersectionality,” and it’s a specialized way of connecting issues. That makes it right up our alley. Many good examples of intersectionality  have been offered, but those of us familiar with the consistent life ethic can offer some…


Women with Disabilities Speak

(compiled by Rachel MacNair)  Alison Davis wrote in a classic article for the journal Disability and Society: Feminists, though accustomed to fighting for the emancipation of women, are failing to address this incongruous situation, and the double discrimination faced by women with disabilities.  This is partly due to the fact that they regard abortion as an unequivocal “right.”…