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Dumping Baby: We Care - Better Late Than Never

The dumping of new born baby is a disturbing and disgusting issue in our society these day seem to suggest that our society is regressing and a cause for concern. We have heard a baby swaddled in newspapers left squalling by a fly-infested dustbin. A baby flung into a chicken coop. A baby abandoned under the harsh sun beating down on a wet rice field. A baby stuffed into a cabinet drawer. A baby left on the doorsteps of people's home with notes. A baby left in a public toilet. These are just too horrendous for any caring, right-thinking member of society. In most cases, these abandoned children - at least those who remain alive, after being dumped - will never know their parent.

It is unimaginable that there are people among us who can take an innocent life. It makes me wonder what has happened to humanity. Even crows protect their young. Isn't it right to assume that only a monstrous brute could have committed such a heinous act? Shouldn't the harshest words and sternest punishment be reserved for the woman or girl who had dumped her own baby? Abandoning babies is not the answer to life's problem and could be charged under section 317 of the Penal Code which carries a maximum jail term of seven years or fine or both according to the Malaysian law.

For the past few years, newborn babies have been found, dead or alive in the most unlikely of places, the worst of which is the rubbish dump. Statistic has shown that for the past 5 years (2005-2010), more than 400 cases of dumping babies reported nation wide and statistics also shown that once a child is abandoned, his relatives are not likely to come forward to claim him.

We as a caring society has to curb the baby-dumping problem. However concerted efforts should be made to ensure that it would not become a norm. The act of leaving babies to die is cruel because babies should be given a chance to live. Even if the babies are unwanted by their natural parents, they deserve a chance to live with adopted parents somewhere else.

In 1996 the 'baby bank' idea was brought up to curb infanticide and dumping, however it was shot down prematurely because it was difficult to reach consensus. The primary objective of this idea is noble, that is, to put a stop, although temporarily, to the inhumane act of abandoning babies.

Government has announced that the first baby hatch in the country will be set up by May 2010, giving those who can't take care of their infants a safe place to drop them off. The place where someone should be there to help them deal with the difficult situation and find the best solution for both mother and child. It is a real problem that needs real solutions even though it is not the best. It is not contravene with the Islamic teachings and it was in fact, the duty of all Muslims to help babies who are victims of circumstances.

To curb this problem once and for all, we have to develop a loving and caring society. A society, free of social ills, can be achieved through maturity of attitude and values nurtured at home. We as a parents should look at the condition of our home environment, and our  relationship and communication with our children before blaming others for our children's deviant behaviour. 

Many youths turned to their friends to escape from their unhappy life at home. Boredom, loneliness, and constant nagging and scolding by parents are some of the factors that drive young people from their homes and doing unhealthy activities. Some parents also abuse their children or are just too occupied with their own activities.

Parents should educate their children about sex and warn them of the consequences of illicit sex so that they will be wary of indulging in such acts. Parents should also inculcate religious values and high moral standards in their children to enable them to control their sexual desires. They should teach the young to deal with life's challenges. They should emphasis on abstinence from all sexual activities, NOT on safe sex, free sex, condom, birth control pills, etc. Especially Muslim, they should realised that they are forbidden from engaging in premarital sex, and dumping of babies is an inhuman act and a great sin.

Tarbiyatu Al-Awlaad fi Al-Islam by Dr Abdullah Nasih Ulwan is a good book to read on how to teach or educate our children (from A - Z) to live their life. Read this book on-line.

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