Opinion: Arizona’s New Abortion Law is Exploiting Those with Disabilities

By Amy Silverman | Phoenix Magazine 

With its new abortion law, Arizona is exploiting people like Sophie under the pretext that it cares about defending their civil rights.

My daughter Sophie has Down syndrome, so you might expect that I’d be particularly interested in Arizona’s new law that, among other things, makes it illegal to abort a fetus with a “genetic abnormality.” 

I’m interested, all right. And terrified that by next year, Arizona will be the next Texas. 

Are you surprised by my position? Don’t be. It’s entirely possible to be 100 percent pro-choice and a mother who absolutely adores her child who happens to have Down syndrome, the world’s most common genetic abnormality – or, as I prefer to call it, genetic difference.  

And while we’re blowing up misconceptions, don’t for a minute believe that the Arizona Legislature and Governor Doug Ducey give a hot damn about my daughter or anyone else with Down syndrome. They’ve made that clear again and again, including in the last legislative session. 

During the same session that saw approval of a law that grants civil rights to embryos and fetuses, lawmakers struck down a pair of proposals that would have guaranteed eligibility for services to people with Down syndrome and offered them the right as adults to be protected and supported while making their own decisions about their lives. 


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January 2022