Last night’s episode of the Fox TV drama House presented another of those powerful ethical dilemmas for which the show is justly renowned. And it presents one of the most powerful pro-life moments ever seen on a fictional U.S. TV series. Probably the most powerful, in fact.

The story is about a middle-aged pregnant woman who will probably die, as will her baby, if she continues her pregnancy. House says the odds are 99.99 percent against them. The mother’s body has fallen prey to "Mirror Syndrome," in which the mother’s body imitates a dangerous fetal condition of water retention.
House, of course, wants to take the unborn child from the womb and end the  pregnancy—immediate delivery is the only known treatment. The child is not yet viable, however, and will die if removed from the womb. The mother is insistent that the child not be taken.
Cuddy argues strenuously against the terminatin, and House finally agrees to try to perform an operation on the baby in the womb. During this procedure, the baby grasps House’s finger, and he is stunned. Cuddy has to prod him to resume the operation.
You can view the clip here. (It’s preceded by a commercial.)
In the end, the woman and baby both survive, but House returns to his harshly analytical approach, telling Cuddy that they did the wrong thing, that they should have saved the mother because the odds were very much against what they chose to do being successful. Cuddy essentially tells him that the sanctity of life is the most important factor in any calculation.
The moment in which the unborn baby—a child which we know not to be viable outside the womb—grasps the doctor’s finger, is a stunner. It says so much, through a simple gesture.
This is one of those instances where a fictional drama can really challenge people’s conceptions.