June 3, 2000
In my pursuit of original thought, sometimes I end up in wobbly territory. This may be one such occasion: I think wallabies and kangaroos can teach us something. No, not how to jump, but how to take care of babies!
The newborn of a marsupial can go in and out of the mother's pouch, but in both cases it is 'separated from the mother's body'. For this reason, if we applied the current human laws to the newborn marsupial, this would legally be a 'person'.
Why did Mother Nature allow this little defenseless animal to be so soon detached from the mother's body and be so completely vulnerable? Maybe she knew that mother kangaroos are by instinct very protective of their newborn, while some other animals and some humans are so selfish that they would kill them.
So Mother Nature provided a solution. She thought of hiding human babies in the mother's womb for a long time, until the newborn baby would look 'lovely' to her.
However Mother Nature did not consider modern medical technology. Soon mothers would get rid of their baby inside their womb, baby unseen.Maybe, after all, the kangaroo's way would have been safer for humans too!
A marsupial is born only after 30 days of gestation. The little newborn marsupial is only about two centimeters long and weighs less than a gram! As soon as it is born, it crawls up the mother's body and enters her pouch. After a few more weeks it spends more time outside the pouch, which it leaves completely after 7 to 10 months.
If humans saw their newly conceived babies after only 30 days of gestation, would they believe they are not just a mass of cells?
Would the current law still apply, and protect them as soon as they were born, even if they were as small as a nickel?
Would humans believe that such tiny babies have the ability to breath on their own, feed themselves and crawl about? Would every new life be respected then?