The Absent MSM and Gosnell – UPDATE

My Tuesday column is up at First Things and I am taking a look at how determined the press seems to be, to look away, look away from Kermit Gosnell and his ilk:

The Gosnell story—a story that by any measure deserved in-depth coverage, some serious discussion about regulation and responsibility, and a few features forcing the nation to consider just when a “late-term” abortion slips into the category of “infanticide” or what our leadership and politicians really think of all of this—proved too big and too messy for the mainstream media.


Do a quick run-through of the search engines. Beyond some perfunctory coverage on the day the Gosnell story broke, there has been little attention paid, no follow-up by the mainstream media. This is an ugly story; it touches too many social shibboleths and indicts too many philosophies. The press wants Kermit Gosnell and his scissors to go away, and to that end they are simply not talking about him.

So, allow me to ask the impolitic question I have hinted at elsewhere: in choosing to look away, in choosing to under-report, in choosing to spin, minimize, excuse, and move-along when it comes to Kermit Gosnell—and to this whole subject of under-regulated abortion clinics, the debasement of women and the slaughter of living children—how are the press and those they protect by their silence any better than the Catholic bishops who, in decades past, looked away, under-reported, spun, minimized, excused, moved-along, and protected the repulsive predator-priests who have stolen innocence and roiled the community of faith?

Hope you’ll read it all

Read also: Joseph Bottom, To Live and Die in PA:

. . . abortion has distorted American law and snarled American politics. Why should it be any surprise that it has soiled American medicine as well? People like Dr. Gosnell are allowed to exist by the pro-abortion lobbying groups that insist ordinary medical supervision will lead to a curtailing of access to abortion in this country.

As it happens, they’re right. Partly that’s because laws concerning medical licensing genuinely do offer a chance for pro-life state legislatures to hurt the abortion business by burdening its practitioners with extensive paperwork and expensive equipment. The activists at NARAL and Planned Parenthood are not exactly wrong to worry about what they call TRAP laws (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers). And yet, there’s a more serious reason that medical supervision threatens the abortion license in this country. It’s what ordinary medical regulation and supervision would reveal: the fact that the abortion business is the gutter of American medicine.

Michelle Malkin’s Fallout Roundup

Abortion industry forced to suspend centers employing Gosnell. There are more like him.

UPDATE: An undercover video done at Planned Parenthood, and Offered without comment. The obnoxious deep note at the beginning finally abates after the first minute.

Liberty Pundits: Melissa Clouthier has more

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • David Atlee

    Yet, anytime someone goes on a rampage with a gun, we get nonstop coverage about “should we increase gun laws?”. They blatant hypocrisy in the media these days is just disgusting and downright pathetic. There is one refreshing thing though out of all of this: The American people have become increasingly skeptical of the mainstream media. The explosion of the Tea Party is just one shining example.

  • Kathy Smith

    Even as one of the faithfull and living in the midwest this news has not been swept under the rug. Not only that the discussion or I should say the disgusted of what he has done it being blogged onto the internet. From what I have read it has affected the people on both sides of the spectrum. But, this was a issue that should fall on the medical society who knew that this was going on and the regulators who were in charge of routine inspections. This went on for years, not months or days. As one who has been in the medical field we all talk. But, that good ” Old Boy” network of doctors still exists. Heaven forbid if they would turn of their own in for such neglect. NO, they just turned the other cheek! I think they were more worried about their malpractice insurance going up. And when it comes to the poor in this country turning the cheek on them well we do a pretty good job at that and I am sure that was one of the other reasons it was not addressed.

  • Manny

    That last article brings up the the notion of justice. What could possibly be justice as a sentence for this monster. If ever the death penalty was in order, it is here. It was repeated callus disregard for the most innocent of life. Executing this monster will be done in a lot more humane than what he did for those infants.

    “the fact that the abortion business is the gutter of American medicine” – Indeed! A gross understatement.

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  • Anonymous

    When are people of character and morality going to rise up and stop this senseless murder of the innocents??? When?????

  • Elaine

    I wish someone would bring a human rights lawsuit for abortion once and for all. It is just too chilling for words what this man and others have done to babies.. Maybe having to look at the horror of what is going on would change many a mind instead of just looking away.

  • BirdwithNoFeather

    I live in a big city and I don’t think this story has affected a single person I’ve talked to. If God were to decide on an age, place and people to flood then I think America in 2011 would just about fit. I can’t say that I have much love of country left after this. Could you imagine any other people ignoring what was done by this man and this industry. In communist Russia mobs would have dragged him out of the court room. In the USA it’s just Ho hum.

  • Robert C

    I find it fascinating that this situation has been swept under the carpet by the MSM. The New York Times is quick on the draw to pillory the Catholic Church for what they perceive, and have distorted, as mishandling in abuse cases. The leftists, and organizations such as SNAP, are quick to call for investigations and ready to conduct witchhunts against bishops but they turn a seedy and cancerous blind eye to this situation. Why aren’t they railing for the prosecution of the staff, the inspectors, the hospital CEO, the directors at the National Organization for Women and Planned Parenthood, who all had a hand in this obvious cover up? The latest action piece by Live Action demonstrates why.
    They are as tacitly guilty in illegal activities as Gosnell and deserve to be indicted, but be assured you will not see a piece on that in the Times.

  • Anonymous

    The Scewtap Letters spring to mind, as they so often do: the Devil is not out to educate people, but is a liar and the father of lies. Confusion and muddiness are his fingerprints.

    Ours is not a battle with men.

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  • francesca

    Do we really expect those in the mainstream media to have the integrity, credibility, and critical thinking skills to elucidate us as to the distinction, that a scissor snip while restraining a baby while inside the womb is perfectly fine while taking a baby out of the womb while scissor snipping the neck is not? The media doesn’t care. The children who died (hundreds? at least?) in Gosnell’s death chamber by him or one of his various employees had a death sentence pronounced on their heads. That was “choice”. It ultimately mattered not to the mainstream media, whether they are delivered and killed or pushed back and killed the same way. Either way, the mother did not want them, wanted them dead, and that is all that matters to the mainstream media. Choice was served. The media has nothing to report. They got the result they deem just. An infant born alive, if not chosen immediately is as good as dead, not worthy of protection. Though even the Roe framework talks of viability and set up a framework by trimester. No matter. Extend it the full way to infanticide, that is what the media seems to be saying by its silence.

    What if an abortionist were to someday construct his or her own underground railroad, or resistance, or safe harbor, and, unbeknownst to mothers who wanted the child dead, delivered the babies without the snipping part and passed them on to loving arms? Expect then we would hear the outcry of the elitist moralizers of the media about, women’s health and malpractice and fraud etc etc.

    We’ve moved back to the days where people can be treated as property and chattel, no question about it. The mainstream media, in the end, can’t think or live for people, and aren’t around for the aftermaths of these situations, to comfort, mourn, grieve, hold our hands. Hitched to the world of commercial sexuality, it will sex and violence itself right out of relevancy.

  • AnotherOpinion

    Why would the press change? What I mean is, they already look away, minimize, excuse, and move-along when it comes to abortion. No major media shows what abortion actualy is. They, and too many of you, are complicit in a cover up. See at and be changed. If abortion was SHOWN for what it is, it would be outlawed. Leave it at words, even if you don’t let the other side co-opt the words, and you have conceeded use of the greatest tool in preventing an ongoing genocide.

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  • ccr

    This story was covered by the MSM. It was covered by the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Philadelphia Enquirer. The links were not hard to find. This was not a story that was ignored.

    [As I very clearly stated in my piece - the press gave it perfunctory coverage when the story broke. Follow up? Investigations into other bad abortion facilities? Not so much -admin]

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  • Robert C

    This could get interesting. Everyone should work to keep them securely on the hook until they are indicted.

  • Jhoward

    The reason that is no attention being brought to the Gosnell case is due to the fact that it was in a poor black neighborhood, he was killing black babies mostly and noone cares that much. If they did he would have be investigated a long time ago. Another reason is simply because they let this guy slip through their fingers and now if to much comes out a lot of heads would roll. So they will not give it to much coverage and get it in the lime light. I think that it’s sad the way he treated these women and so very awful how the babies suffered and died. Most of all it is sad that this case is being low profiled.

  • Elaine S.

    The grand jury in this case, and many pro-life commenters since, blame lack of regulation for this atrocity. It is obvious that state and local government and the medical community failed miserably in this case. The only regulator that even attempted to enforce its standards upon the clinic was the National Abortion Federation but they also never notified authorities of what was going on there.

    But could someone who was sincerely pro-life even take part in the regulatory process without thereby cooperating in or facilitating the evil of abortion? If you are pro-life and work for the state health department or medical society, could you licitly take part in an inspection of an abortuary and write it up for any violations you saw, without thereby making it possible for the clinic to continue operating legally? Or would it be justified on the grounds that you were at least attempting in some small way to limit the evil taking place there?

    This is a serious question for me because I work in a state regulatory capacity and although I’ve never dealt directly with any rules having to do with abortion there’s always the possibility that I might have to someday. I’d like to think that if this situation ever came up, I’d be in a position to do some good by helping to at least limit or contain the evil of abortion. Or would I be just kidding myself and be morally obligated to quit my job in that case?

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  • Ds0490

    Interesting to note that in every instance, immediately after talking with the “pimps” the Planned Parenthood office contacted their local police offices to report them.

    Every case.

  • Ds0490

    Link regarding Planned Parenthood reporting.