New on American Thinker – Pro-Abortion Columnist Says Philadelphia’s Dr. Death Thrived Because Abortions Aren’t Available Enough

My latest commentary, posted at American Thinker:

Finding a pro-choice spin to the horrific charges against abortionist Kermit Gosnell — “eight counts of murder in the deaths of a patient and seven babies who were born alive and then killed with scissors” — seems like an awfully tall order, but left-wing author Michelle Goldberg is going to give it a try anyway.


Her latest Daily Beast column opens by declaring that if Gosnell “is guilty of even a fraction of the carnage he’s been charged with, he should spend the rest of his life in prison,” but goes on to argue that not only is his office not representative of the average abortion clinic, but that his crimes actually demonstrate why abortion needs to be more widely available, more respected, and even subsidized:
“[T]he difference between this gruesome killing machine and a ‘safe’ clinic is aesthetics, really,” wrote Lori Ziganto in RedState.com. “There is no denying the horror of what was found in this ‘doctor’s’ office. But it happens in every abortion clinic across the land.”


She’s completely wrong. Gosnell’s clinic was in no way representative of most abortion facilities, which is why the country’s largest organization of abortion providers, the National Abortion Federation, refused him membership and testified against him to the grand jury.
That’s nice. But it misses the point, which would have been clear if Goldberg had quoted Ziganto’s next few sentences:
Sticking a scalpel in a baby’s neck in utero has the same result as sticking it in the neck with scissors outside the womb: Death.


In this case, people can visualize the actual babies, as they were horrifically kept in jars and bottles. In “safe” clinics, they are hidden away in haz-mat disposals or chopped up into tiny pieces before being sucked out of their mother’s womb and disposed of like trash. Hidden away, allowing people to blind themselves to what is actually happening. It is easier to remain blissfully ignorant and ignore the fact that a baby is a baby, in utero or out.
The “blood on the floor,” the “stench of urine fill[ing] the air,” the “cat feces on the stairs,” and the “[s]emi-conscious women” waiting “on dirty recliners covered with blood-stained blankets” may be unique horrors, but the other things that make Gosnell’s death den seem worse than a “nice, clean” abortion clinic are morally insignificant. If you’re stabbing a baby’s spinal cord, it doesn’t matter where the baby’s body is located. It doesn’t matter how you store or dispose of the remains. You still killed a child.


(Indeed, back in Illinois, President Barack Obama didn’t see the difference-he thought full-term babies should be equally killable before and after delivery…and if it was after, then their death-starvation-was guaranteed to be even slower.)
 
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Just Sickening

Press release from ALL:

MORE DEAD BABIES FOUND IN MICHIGAN DUMPSTERS

WASHINGTON, D.C. (08 May 2008) – Shortly after the gruesome discovery of aborted babies in a dumpster behind Dr. Alberto Hodari’s Womancare abortion facility in early March, Citizens for a Pro-Life Society discovered the mutilated bodies of aborted babies in another dumpster at Women’s Advisory Clinic in Livonia, Michigan, owned by Dr. Reginald Sharpe.

“It is indeed representative of the evil times in which we live that we must stop and take time to grieve the loss of children whose parents clearly believed they were disposable in much the same way that rotting garbage would be,” said Brown “America is losing her soul.”

The bodies of at least six aborted babies were discovered in trash bags containing McDonald’s food wrappers, Olive Garden crackers, medical records and bloody medical waste. Following an April 30 investigation by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Sharpe received only a warning and no fines, as was the case with Hodari.

“Dr. Monica Miller’s most recent discovery is not only bone chilling, but a somber reminder of the total disregard for the rights of those human beings who have not yet been born,” said Judie Brown, president of American Life League. “We are told that the bodies of the babies found behind Reginald Sharpe’s abortion facility are legally defined as mere biohazardous waste and are thus treated as such. After all, that is the law.”

Earlier this week, Bishop John Quinn of the Detroit diocese offered a funeral Mass for the 25 aborted babies found behind Hodari’s facility in Lathrup Village. “We are grateful to Bishop Quinn for giving these babies the dignity and respect they were denied when they were tossed in the trash,” said Brown. “We pray that the remains of these most recent victims will be treated with equal respect.”

American Life League was cofounded in 1979 by Judie Brown. It is the largest grassroots Catholic pro-life organization in the United States and is committed to the protection of all innocent human beings from the moment of creation to natural death. For more information or media inquiries, please contact Michael Hichborn at 540.659.7900.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Michael Hichborn
Director of Media Relations
American Life League
1179 Courthouse
RoadStafford, Virginia 22554
540.659.4171 (w) 540.226.9178 (c)

Pro-Life Violence?

I’ve debated a number of folks of varying caliber on the ‘Net. Most recently, Thayne & G-Man have sparked a productive exploration of morality, religion, secularism, & abortion. I’ve also had some good discussions with Sean back during the Coulter Nation days and at Olbroad’s old site (by the way, this is her current site). On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve met some infantile commenters at The American Mind, the clowns of YouStinkLeft, (by the way, their latest brilliant question is—and I quote—“Why does Fox News want us to have a war with Iran?”), the unintentional hilarity offered by B&S regular Scott, and, of course, the Hacks4Rudy. But the sorriest I’ve encountered would be a truly-despicable fellow by the name of Jayce Commo. Since it’s impossible to have serious debate with the immature, bothering with them is usually a waste of time. But a recent post about Generations for Life on his aptly-named blog takes lazy guilt-by-association to such depths that I can’t let it go unchallenged:

I generally don’t have any problems with pro-life supporters, so long as they’re not
blowing things up, shooting doctors, or harrassing women. But a few things on the Generations site leave me feeling a bit uneasy…

Since the overwhelming majority of America’s millions of pro-lifers would never even consider violence, then Jayce doesn’t have anything to worry about. Indeed, according to the second of these three articles, one of the killers “was disappointed with the anemic response from pro-life activists, who denounced Griffin’s use of violence” (the article also says “Most mainstream antiabortion organizations distanced themselves from him.” I’d sure like to seem them try to substantiate the implication that any pro-life group which could legitimately be deemed “mainstream” either stayed neutral or embraced the killings.).

Anyway, the
article in question is an announcement for a couple protests of a new abortion mill in Aurora, Illinois (I was gonna call the article a “call to arms,” but as we’ll see below, you never know what phrases might trigger liberal bed-wetting). Jayce is mortified that teen pro-lifers “are determined to do everything they can to stop Planned Parenthood” (his emphasis). “I hope ‘everything’ doesn’t really mean everything,” he says, with no evidence whatsoever that GFL harbors even a shred of sympathy towards anti-abortion violence. Jayce then complains that GFL describes participants of Families against Planned Parenthood’s 40-Day Prayer Vigil as “Prayer Warriors,” because it sounds “way to much like these psychos at Army of God.”

The so-called Army of God supports killing abortionists. Take a look at what FAPP’s idea of a “Prayer Warrior”
consists of, and you’ll see it’s juuust a little different. Take a look at any serious pro-life organization, like the several on CFO’s “Fighting for Life” sidebar (whoops! Can’t say “fighting!”), and the difference between us and the killers is self-evident—to the fair-minded.

Speaking of facts, let’s take a look at some hard numbers. NARAL’s own statistics (
PDF link) cover both the US and Canada & are up to date as of January 1, 2007. Now, bear in mind that an organization which advocates killing children is certainly unlikely to have any qualms about cooking the numbers (when you’re in their line of work, you need all the sympathy you can get), but for the sake of argument, let’s take them at face value. So how pervasive is the anti-choice reign of terror?

– 7 murders
– 17 attempted murders
– 41 bombings
– 171 arsons
– 82 attempted bombings & arsons
– 574 fake anthrax letters
– 92,000 “acts of disruption” such as bomb threats & harassing calls

Assuming none of the other cases were counted among the “acts of disruption,” that’s a grand total of 92,892 acts of pro-life extremism covering both the US and Canada. That sounds like a lot, but bear a couple things in mind. About 99% of the acts come from the “disruption” category, and we should be wary of exactly what constitutes a “harassing call” in NARAL’s view—I highly doubt they only counted violent calls; rather, I’ll bet there are quite a few in that number which only consisted of arguing abortion’s morality and/or offering to pray for their forgiveness. Say what you want about the productivity or decorum of such calls, but they certainly can’t be described as malevolent in any way. What’s more, NARAL puts the bomb-threat number at 596, which means the overwhelming majority of the pro-life extremism in general, and of the disruptions in particular, consists of lesser acts.

As for the incidents of actual violence and genuine threat, each is inexcusable & deplorable, and no pro-lifer should tolerate them in any way. The good news is, the fanatics make up only a tiny minority of Americans against abortion. In contrast, how big is the real pro-life movement? Consider that Pro-Life Wisconsin alone
boasts the support of 14,000 families (and that many pro-lifers only belong to one of a state’s multiple pro-life groups given their differences on things like rape exceptions), and the serious, honorable pro-life movement easily dwarfs the unhinged.

So why does Jayce think
saying inflammatory things without evidence is ethical? Because “submission of moral authority makes anything possible, including murder…the lines between morality, martyrdom, and terrorism are blurring more each day.” Is submitting one’s moral authority to religious belief likely to make somebody violent? It can; I’m not aware of any Christian who denies that the Bible’s been used to justify horrible things, and we’re in a world war sparked by Islamic fanaticism. But “submission of moral authority” alone doesn’t create bad results; submission combined with bad teachings does, as does submission in the absence of reason—fortunately, most Judeo-Christians embrace reason wholeheartedly.

Moreover, if God-submission is to blame for all religious evil, then it deserves equal credit for all religious good. Believing that one is God-bound to do charity and oppose bigotry is just as powerful as believing that one is God-bound to kill. In fact, the secular should be thankful that believers overwhelmingly “submit their moral authority” to the former than to the latter (don’t believe me?
Click here to hear Dennis Prager’s interview with Arthur Brooks, author of Who Really Cares).

One more observation: why is submitting moral authority to something else inherently more problematic than the alternative: deeming oneself the highest arbiter of one’s morality? It seems to me the latter has its own potential to produce arrogance & rationalization. After all, Jayce’s atheism certainly didn’t keep him from smearing GFL without evidence.

Only someone suffering from religious paranoia could seriously construe the work of Generations for Life as blurring the lines between morality, martyrdom, and terrorism. Neither critical thought nor honest concern could possibly yield such a result. Whether it’s Jayce, Christopher Hitchens, or Sam Harris, some people just can’t escape their prejudices when it comes to religion. That’s a shame, and we can only hope & pray that they’ll someday grow up.

A Glimpse into the Heart of Evil

Back during the 2003 debate over partial-birth abortion, Slate ran an editorial by abortionist Warren Hern entitled, “Did I Violate the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban?” His thesis is that the law’s language was vague, which would lead to problems. Full disclosure: I haven’t looked at his argument in detail (I might for a future post, and if you want to read the law for yourself, click here). In my opinion, there’s no substantive moral difference between a month-1 abortion and a month-9 abortion. But right now my interest is in Hern’s closing paragraph:

“Earlier this year, I began an abortion on a young woman who was 17 weeks pregnant. Because of the two days of prior treatment, the amniotic membranes were visible and bulging. I ruptured the membranes and released the fluid to reduce the risk of amniotic fluid embolism. Then I inserted my forceps into the uterus and applied them to the head of the fetus, which was still alive, since fetal injection is not done at that stage of pregnancy. I closed the forceps, crushing the skull of the fetus, and withdrew the forceps. The fetus, now dead, slid out more or less intact. With the next pass of the forceps, I grasped the placenta, and it came out in one piece. Within a few seconds, I had completed my routine exploration of the uterus and sharp curettage. The blood loss would just fill a tablespoon. The patient, who was awake, hardly felt the operation. She was relieved, grateful, and safe. She wants to have children in the future.”

Read that again. This “doctor” is describing an act of murder, admitting that his victim was “alive” at the time, and doing so without the slightest hint of regret or embarassment; indeed, he is proud of the grotesque way in which he makes a living! I’ve never been surprised at the existence of evil in this world, but the degree of acceptance his kind has achieved in so-called civilized society still makes me sick to my stomach.