Ableism and relativism: Finding a difference
“If we didn’t have ableist ideas as a society, then selective abortion wouldn’t exist. Because there wouldn’t be this idea of a better or worse child.”
I respectfully disagree. Ableism isn’t discrimination against people with disabilities. If I have a friend who is in a wheelchair, not inviting them to go mountain climbing with me isn’t me being ableist, it is me not being an asshole. I am recognizing that they have a disability, and changing my behavior based on that fact. That is, technically speaking, discrimination. It isn’t a bad thing, and it isn’t something that I would want to myself or others to avoid. I don’t offer standard store bought cake to a friend who can’t eat wheat, and the examples go on. Ableism, therefore, must be (usually negative) discrimination against people with disabilities above and beyond what is reasonable/good/ok.
A child who is deaf and has severe impulse control problems causes more stress and more problems for parents than a child born without anything that we would diagnose. The parents don’t think that such a child would be a worse human being, but the child would be a more troublesome child. A parent is therefore not morally wrong for wanting their child to not have any physical or mental disabilities. They don’t believe that a deaf child is a worse child, but given the choice, they would rather have a child who can communicate and interpret the world the way everybody else can. Is that so wrong?