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Like a Slave, is an Unborn Child not a Brother?

Charles Moore

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This week, I received an invitation to the opening of a new gallery in the Museum in Docklands, an offshoot of the Museum of London.

The gallery, which is in an old sugar warehouse, will be called "London, Sugar and Slavery". "Discover," says the invitation, "how the English sweet tooth, consumer boycotts and the Notting Hill Carnival are linked by one of the great crimes against humanity".

The opening of the gallery marks the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade. The publicity material speaks of "obscene profits, horrific brutality" and how "the seeds of racism" were sown. It would be an understatement to say that the museum organisers regard slavery as a wholly evil thing.

On the same day as I opened my invitation, Dawn Primarolo, whose name sounds like a brand of margarine, but is actually the health minister, was telling the Commons Science and Technology Committee that there was no justification for lowering the limit for abortion below the current 24 weeks.

In doing so, she was going against those who argue that medical advances now make it easier for children born before 24 weeks to survive.

As if timing it to undermine Miss Primarolo's position, Millie McDonagh, who was born in Manchester aged 22 weeks, celebrated her first birthday the following day, photographed with her mother in the newspapers.

I found myself wondering how abortion will be viewed by museum curators, teachers, historians and moralists 200 years from now.

Read the entire article on the London Telegraph website (new window will open).

Posted: 31-Oct-07



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