Federal appeals court upholds Tennessee ban on abortion for Down syndrome

Thursday, November 26, 2020 | Tag Cloud Tags: , , , ,

by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent

(Worthy News) – A federal appeals court in Tennessee has ruled it is lawful for the state to ban abortions requested on the grounds of Down syndrome, gender, or race, CBN News reports. In making this decision the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the legality of a law enacted by Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) earlier this year.

The case had been brought by abortion rights groups who argued Lee’s law is too vague, CBN News reports. The legislation also bans abortion from six weeks’ gestation.

Following the ruling, Lee said in a statement last week Friday: “Every life is precious and every child has inherent human dignity. Our law prohibits abortion based on the race, gender, or diagnosis of Down syndrome of the child and the court’s decision will save lives. Protecting our most vulnerable Tennesseans is worth the fight.”

Specifically, in regard to Down syndrome being given as a reason for abortion, Elizabeth Graham, the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission’s vice president of operations, told the Baptist Press: “Too many have been using a diagnosis of Down syndrome as a reason to rob preborn children not only of their inherent dignity but also of their lives. This court ruling ensures that will no longer be the case in Tennessee.”

The National Down Syndrome Society reports that about one in every 700 babies in the US is born with the condition: people with Down syndrome have three copies of the 21st chromosome, which results in varying degrees of intellectual and physical developmental delay and disability.

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