Letter: Science should improve, not negate, the lives of the disabled

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From Mrs C. E. Wikeley

Sir: Polly Toynbee writes that pregnant women are poor "confused" creatures who experience "imaginary love" and require "professionals" to guide them in their decisions about their own bodies and their children. Her tone is insulting and patronising. All children, however "normal" or "perfect" at birth, can bring their parents both immense joy and devastating suffering. Were we to follow Ms Toynbee's line of thought to its logical conclusion, we would never dare to reproduce for fear that our offspring might ruin our lives at some future date.

Can we not respect the Astburys' decision, which is right for them, and stop trying to foist our middle-class, sensible, liberal values on to others? Of course they and their children are going to suffer; but who is to say that they would not suffer more if a termination were carried out now?

As for that "imaginary love", surely all love is built upon imagination - luckily for us.

Yours sincerely,

Clare Wikeley



13 September