The religiously sensitive among us like to describe today’s moral erosion in metaphoric terms.
Life is a slippery slope, they contend, succinctly indicating the type of moral indifference which eventually, even suddenly, dissolves into behavior beyond the socially acceptable.
But I’m being too kind. The lack of present day moral standards has led a lot of us, even the more liberally disposed, to blurt out, “Well, now I’ve heard it all!”
Whether it’s a young mother, Tanya Dacri, dismembering her seven-week-old boy, Zachary, or a particularly despicable mob displaying gallows humor outside a Florida prison at the execution of a pretty despicable person himself, Ted Bundy, America is suddenly a different place in which to live.
And is there really that much difference between a seven-week-old and a living fetus who, a few months younger, is aborted?
Another case in point, to show how our standards have devolved, is the situation of a father — described only as an educated man with two college degrees, a fine profession and a comfortable home — who walked out of a Boston hospital some years ago leaving behind an infant daughter, a twin – only because she was born by today’s standards as a “special child.”
“The father said he didn’t want anything less than perfect,” a nurse said. “That’s what he said, ‘less than perfect.’”
As if anyone of us, so much in need of God’s mercy, could be so presumptuous!
“Did he see her?” the nurse asked.
“We’re two floors above his wife’s room. He didn’t want to see her. He didn’t want to look at her. She cried a lot after birth, and he said she squealed like a pig.”
“He had a CAT scan done on her sister to see if she was normal,” another nurse added. “I don’t know what he would have done if the test had showed any imperfection in her. Maybe he might have left both of them here. Who knows?”
“They’re going to tell the family that his baby died at birth,” said the nurse holding the infant.
“That’s what they’re going to tell her sister, too, when she’s old enough to understand,” the other nurse added.
Of course, I thought, how could anyone be compelling, even to a young child, in stating the real truth that only the perfect were wanted?
What was particularly telling in the reporting was the lack of further mention of the wife — who was the child’s mother.
Have we gotten that bad that the security a child finds in a mother’s love is no longer guaranteed in a world that knows too much child abuse, brutality and the silence of those who would just walk away?
The obvious implications of this account naturally alarm us, but one person’s denial is every person’s possibility in a world where the “slippery slope” is too easily ignored