The bodies of thousands of aborted and miscarried babies were incinerated as clinical waste, with some even used to heat hospitals, an investigation has found.
Ten NHS trusts have admitted burning foetal remains alongside other rubbish while two others used the bodies in ‘waste-to-energy’ plants which generate power for heat.
Last night the Department of Health issued an instant ban on the practice which health minister Dr Dan Poulter branded ‘totally unacceptable.’
Unacceptable, he says. Not simply unacceptable, but totally unacceptable (in case there’s any doubt about the degree of unacceptability we’re dealing with). And of course, I agree – it is totally unacceptable. But while “the civilized world” is out to lunch over the barbarism displayed here, a few of us remain conscious of the elephant in the room. Yeah, that elephant. The big fat one standing in a pool of blood and a pile of dismembered body parts.
Riddle me this: if tearing a child to pieces inside the womb is a perfectly acceptable way to do things – it isn’t a child, after all, only a clump of cells – why is it then so unacceptable to use the leftovers as fuel? How can these bodies be any kind of sacred, how can they merit any kind of respect, when the lives attached to them did not?
Using dead infants to heat a hospital is only “unacceptable” if they bear the stamp of the imago Dei. And if they bear that stamp (they do), our greatest concern should not be the hospital furnaces, but the women’s clinics. These babies were burned, yes. But they were murdered first.
Think about that and weep.