U.K. Independence Party member John Upex, chairman of Ukip’s Harrogate & Knaresborough Association, has resigned after advocating for the abortion of babies with Down syndrome. In letters he wrote to conservative MP Andrew Jones, Upex talked about bloodletting in Britain by piano wire, and talked about how babies with Down syndrome should be aborted.
In one letter he told Mr Jones: “I understand the test for what we call Down’s Syndrome is not feasible until the third month (of pregnancy) and as the God-Father of a Down’s boy I cannot but endorse the termination of those few children with that condition.”
After the remarks became public, Upex stepped down but refused to back away from his comments beyond saying that they had been taken out of context.
He told the Independent that his views on Down’s syndrome foetuses had been taken out of context.
He said: “Before Ukip we had three parties that had no difference. We are in exactly the same situation as the Eastern Bloc countries before the Berlin Wall came down.”
“Mr Jones accuses me of eugenics. This is a complete travesty. My view is that abortion is a necessary but not very pleasant evil. With current medical science where do you draw the line? My personal view is that up to nine weeks is OK but later than that, I couldn’t do it.
He added: “In cases like Down’s syndrome or spina bifida, I know children in that state and it is horrible for everyone. In cases like that termination might be the best thing.”
Saying that termination is the best option for a child with Down syndrome or spina bifida is a eugenicist statement. Upex isn’t the first Ukip member to voice such abhorrent views, either. Ukip member Geoffrey Clark was suspended from the party in 2012 after saying that there should be compulsory abortions of babies with Down syndrome, and calling for free euthanasia over the age of 80.
And while Upex resigned and Clark was suspended, it seems awfully suspicious that people holding such despicable views seem drawn to that party. Consider the fact that Upex resigned and was not asked to step down, and Ukip thanked Upex for his contribution to the party. Perhaps advocating for the abortion of children with Down syndrome in the Ukip is A-OK, as long as it isn’t said too loud.