But I agree with the assertion of the district attorney that Gosnell was able to get along with for so long by design.
The State Legislature has charged the Department of Health (DOH) with responsibility for writing and enforcing regulations to protect health and safety in abortion clinics as well as in hospitals and other health care facilities. Yet a significant difference exists between how DOH monitors abortion clinics and how it monitors facilities where other medical procedures are performed.
Indeed, the department has shown an utter disregard both for the safety of women who seek treatment at abortion clinics and for the health of fetuses after they have become viable. State health officials have also shown a disregard for the laws the department is supposed to enforce. Most appalling of all, the Department of Health’s neglect of abortion patients’ safety and of Pennsylvania laws is clearly not inadvertent: It is by design. …
State health officials knew that Gosnell and his clinic were offering unacceptable medical care to women and girls, yet DOH failed to take any action to stop the atrocities documented by this Grand Jury.
Of course this neglect toward patient’s safety and the law is by design. A shoddy operation like Gosnell’s could not have continued to perpetrate medical atrocities on women, unless somewhere along the line situations were going unreported and investigations were left unassigned as true-believers within the system looked determinedly away. See pages 9-15 of the report. In fact, just keep reading.
For them, I suppose, these dead or maimed women might be considered “collateral damage” in the efforts to preserve a “choice” they consider sacrosanct. If a few women perish along with the million babies per year, well, it’s such a small number, right?
And if some women are left scarred, maimed or infertile, well…probably they’re the sort of women who shouldn’t have babies, anyway, right?
After all, Margaret Sanger — the poster girl for pro-choice advocates in America — was all about making sure that certain races and certain classes of people were discouraged from reproducing. But you’re not supposed to know that, or at least you’re not supposed to acknowledge that. To do so would be as rude as forcing people to consider that the only way to prevent a pregnancy from advancing to new life is to “stop” it unnaturally, or to note that “stopping” is just a euphemism for “killing.” Because that’s the only way to stop new life from flourishing: by killing it.
But it’s rude to mention that. It is also rude (and “shrill”) to mention in polite company that the method of killing the new life involves reaching deep within a woman’s body with unnatural instrumentation and either sucking the baby, bit-by-bit, through a vacuum tube into a jar, or scraping it out of her, limb-by-limb.
And it is beyond rude to suggest to true-believers (many of whom are enthusiastic students of social and psychological theory) that the violent death-and-dismemberment being performed within a woman’s womb — deep inside her body — may produce both physical repercussions on her body, and psychological repercussions within society.
Intelligent people — people who pride themselves on having curious minds, who have studied philosophy and arcana, and who often allow for notions of karmic energies while rejecting the idea of a sin — would prefer to keep to their euphemisms and change the subject rather than consider what affect it may have on a nation, when so many of its women are walking around carrying all of that unanswered negativity and violence within their bodies.
To approach such people with a Bible and the idea that there was a real child, begotten of God, torn to shreds within the living tissue of its mother, whose soul (her life-force) might then be in peril due to that act, is so profoundly rude and full of “magical thinking” as to inspire mockery and jeering disdain.
To approach them with The Tao and the idea that there was a real being, energetically positive, violently destroyed in a burst of extreme, negative energy — energy that remains within the woman and will affect her chi, her lifeforce, is also rude. But it also scares them to fury.
Generally the true believers in abortion, very comfortable with dismissing all that unsophisticated Judeo/Christian moralizing, find it much more difficult to respond to those arguing from the side of Eastern philosophy. For one thing, Eastern philosophy — if it is embraced superficially — seems so modern and smart and permissive; it’s not full of that dread word “no,” and so they can’t accept that it might contain an argument against abortion.
For another thing, hey, all that talk about “energy” that’s sort of science-y right? And science is supposed to be respectable in ways theology is not.
Yesterday on Twitter, a journalist wrote: “This abortion doctor story is gruesome. Anti-choicers will seize on it, but it’s about criminal behavior, not abortion.”
Its funny how framing works. A massacre perpetrated by a deranged man is not about the deranged man; it’s about “rhetoric.” But a massacre perpetrated by an abortion provider whose violations against laws of the nation and of humanity were overlooked for years is “not about abortion.” It’s about criminal behavior, and that’s all. But some of our most prominent politicians have voted against the very bill — the “born alive” bill — that defines such behavior as criminal. Meaning, I guess, that if only enough politicians had voted with Sen. Barack Obama, Gosnell’s behavior would not be “criminal” at all, and therefore we wouldn’t even be talking about it?
Well, the story of Kermit Gosnell is about abortion; it’s about abortion in America. And abortion in America is about a mindset, — even (or especially) among regulation-happy folk who will make a big noise about public safety on issues large and small — a mindset that will protect a Gosnell, and purposely turn a blind eye to abortion centers and practitioners and all of their lapses and illegalities, as long as the abortions keep on coming.
If that were not true, if the blind eye were not being turned, don’t you think someone — before now — would have seen and been disgusted by Kermit Gosnell’s collection of severed baby feet?
Look at the photo, if you can take it. It’s a kick to the gut.
UPDATE I: Ace notes that all three major news networks embargoed this story. They’re going to want this one to be flushed down the drain, like a “precipitated” fetus, as soon as possible.
UPDATE II: Leticia Velasquez, whose daughter has Down syndrome, writes about the cognitive dissonance that leads some to take great pains with language while discussing those they’d rather see aborted. She dares to be provocative, and to challenge:
Given the choice, I would prefer my daughter to be called a “retard” and know that abortion of babies with Down syndrome had ceased. Early last month President Barack Obama signed a law decreeing that federal statutes must no longer use the term “mental retardation.” The phrase replacing it will be “intellectual disability.”
Many Down syndrome advocates were jubilant, but I am more skeptical. [...] It seems that, every few decades, old terms for those with physical disabilities or cognitive delays are abandoned in favor of new ones, since existing terms have developed a negative connotation.
But drawing a new word from the thesaurus is not enough. We have to respect the right of the mentally disabled to exist. We need to stop aborting them.
Plainspoken and forthright. You’ll want to read the whole thing.
Ultrasound Abortions; What No One Sees
Fr. Dwight Longenecker
“We’re Fighting the Bloody Lot”
GOP introduces ban on Fed Funding for Abortion
Ace excerpts a large portion of the report
Catholic Hospital Restrictions Controversial
“Little Angel Who Almost Wasn’t”
The Abortion Seesaw