There is a perfectly good method for ensuring that couples can have babies which are not going to die of a number of horrible genetic diseases.
It’s already used to test for several. So adding one more disease – a particularly virulent form of breast cancer – is not such a big deal.
But junior health minister Jet Bussemaker (Labour) had the audacity to forget she is in government with a party which is totally opposed to the very concept – the ChristenUnie.
The ChristenUnie might be leftish on social issues, but when it comes to the crunch, it reveals its true fundamentalist colours. ChristenUnie believes that politics should be determined by Biblical principles. So its seemingly-amiable leader André Rouvoet insisted Bussemaker withdraw her plan or he would force a cabinet crisis.
Bussemaker was humiliated and forced to say she should first have discussed the issue with the rest of the cabinet. Now she will have to debate the issue with her Christian Democrat and ChristenUnie colleagues.
While the Christian Democrats are probably open to persuasion – although even their scientific experts were talking about the slippery slope in weekend coverage of the affair – how do you convince people who in the 21st century still believe God made the world in seven days?
The breast cancer test shows just how far the influence of orthodox Christianity is spreading. Religion has no place in politics.
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