In his remarks at China’s Sichuan University, Vice President Biden, in response to a question, said, “Your policy has been one which I fully understand—I’m not second-guessing—of one child per family. The result being that you’re in a position where one wage earner will be taking care of four retired people. Not sustainable.”

This is a remarkably obtuse and morally disgraceful statement. The policy the vice president is so understanding of, after all, involves forced abortion, involuntary sterilization, and gendercide. As Reggie Littlejohn, president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, put it, “China’s One Child Policy causes more violence to women and girls than any other official policy on earth. To merely mention the economic consequences is to turn a blind eye to the terrible human suffering caused by forced abortion. Chinese women are literally dragged out of their homes, strapped to tables and forced to abort.”

The current political debate is focused, for understandable reasons, on economic matters. But from time to time it’s worth recalling just how morally bankrupt modern liberalism has become. What the vice president of the United States is endorsing isn’t simply a right to an abortion; it is the (violent) act of abortion, even against the wishes and will of the mother.

There is something deeply corrupt in an ideology that considers even forced abortions as beyond criticism and meriting our sympathy. And the fact Biden’s comments apparently didn’t create even a stir among most journalists tells you everything you need to know about the dominant moral sensibilities of many within the political class.

Hubert Humphrey once said the moral test of government is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped. Whatever the drawbacks to liberalism in the age of Humphrey, it had much more to commend than modern-day liberalism, whose indifference to the most vulnerable members of the human race—unborn children—is chilling.

Peter Wehner is a senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.