When unborn babies matter

"Pregnant women in the U.S. are exposed to multiple chemicals. Further efforts are warranted to understand sources of exposure and implications for policy-making."

This concludes a report in Environmental Health Perspectives, a publication of the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, and the Department of Health and Human Services.

The study created something of a stir in the media. USA Today reported Study finds toxic chemicals in pregnant womens' bodies, and the LA Times What pregnant women don't know they're carrying -- toxic chemicals, new study finds. TIME headlined their story Pregnant Women Awash in Chemicals. Is That Bad for Baby?

Reviewing the news stories is telling: TIME ponders the effects of these toxins on the baby. Same for the Washington Post's blog. But the LA Times wonders “about the potential ramifications on those fetuses.” Likewise, the San Francisco Chronicle notes “the potential for exposure to multiple chemicals to hurt their unborn fetuses.”

The effects of toxins on human beings is a serious topic, which forces reporters, commentators and everyone else to stop and think about what’s growing up inside a pregnant woman: is it a human being, or an abstraction? It seems the answer depends on the threat to the child's health or very life.

Such sad hypocrisy can only result in cultural madness.

As I’ve written about before, in this case about mercury, those who champion for a woman’s right to choose abortion very often feel queasy when such scientific studies land in their lap. This is to be expected. As Someone once said, the Truth will set us free.

May God bless the unborn and the mothers that carry them, and the men that fathered them. Lord, help us all to appreciate and love the miraculous gift of human life, in all its stages. And may science continue to show us what exactly happens at the moment of conception.

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About the Blog

Catholic Ecology posts my regular column in the Rhode Island Catholic, as well as scientific and theological commentary about the latest eco-news, both within and outside of the Catholic Church. What is contained herein is but one person's attempt to teach and defend the Church's teachings - ecological and otherwise. As such, I offer all contents of this blog for approval of the bishops of the Church. It is my hope that nothing herein will lead anyone astray from truth.