By Dave Andrusko
Few things are more interesting than “connecting the dots.” Let’s put a few recent developments together and see what they say about the state of the pro-abortion opposition to the “Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act,” recently introduced in Kansas, based on National Right to Life’s model bill.
The legislation is a major new component of the right to life movement’s 2015 legislative agenda and the measure is deeply unsettling to the Abortion Industry and its legion of media advocates.
So what is it that has the usual suspects unusually skittish? Here’s how NRLC President Carol Tobias describes what would/should be banned:
Imagine a society in which it is perfectly legal to take an unborn baby, who often is developed enough to feel the most excruciating pain, and then to coldly and purposefully pull that child apart – dismembering her – body part by body part; arms, legs, torso, and head.
Nobody would believe a civilized society would do that. Right?
We do that right here in the United States of America. In all 50 states.
Elsewhere today, we posted an account written by Kathy Ostrowski, legislative director for Kansans for Life, describing a hearing Monday of the Kansas Senate Public Health & Welfare committee at which she testified. I read Kathy’s summary and then glanced at how newspapers covered the hearing (the few that did).
The AP story, written by Nicholas Clayton was almost indistinguishable from a NARAL/Planned Parenthood press release. Rather than deal with the substance of this first-in-the-nation measure, co-sponsored by 25 state Senators, Clayton offers a laundry list of pro-abortion complaints.
Just guessing, if the shoe were on the other foot, I don’t think criticism would precede explanation.
By contrast Bryan Lowry, of The Wichita Eagle, quoted Ostrowski first before laying out the pro-abortionists’ parade of horribles. What’s useful for our purposes here is that the quote from the local Planned Parenthood does a nice job encapsulating several of the primary anti-life talking points.
After the hearing, the bill’s opponents accused Ostrowski and others of using shock tactics.
“I think it’s important to recognize that this legislation does not use medical terminology,” said Elise Higgins, a lobbyist for Planned Parenthood. “It uses inflammatory, medically inaccurate language to score political points.”
Let’s go through a couple of these.
What is “shocking” was not the language used. It was the act that was described and the helplessness of the victim whose life is taken in such a barbaric fashion. No matter how clinically you describe what takes place in a D&E abortion, it is shocking to any morally sentient human being.
Here’s how Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy described a D&E abortion:
“After sufficient dilation [of the cervix], a doctor inserts grasping forceps through the woman’s cervix and into the uterus to grab a living fetus. The doctor grips a fetal part with the forceps and pulls it back through the cervix and vagina, continuing to pull even after meeting resistance from the cervix. The friction causes the fetus to tear apart. For example, a leg might be ripped off the fetus as it is pulled through the cervix and out of the woman. The fetus, in many cases, dies just as a human adult or child would: It bleeds to death as it is torn apart limb by limb. The fetus can be alive at the beginning of the dismemberment process and can survive for a time while its limbs are being torn off.”
The incorrect “medical terminology” dodge is just a recycling of the bogus charge against partial-birth abortion. The simple truth is D&E dismemberment abortions are as brutal as the partial-birth abortion method, which is now illegal in the United States.
And talk about the pot calling the kettle black: the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act is about scoring “political points”? Please.
Kathy references a terrific piece written yesterday by NRLC’s Andrew Bair. Among many other items, Mr. Bair talks about what can only be described as a hysterical and wildly misleading post written for ThinkProgress by Tara Culp-Ressler.
“The measures are cloaked in emotional language about ‘fetal dismemberment’ that’s reminiscent of the pro-life community’s successful push to enact the country’s first national abortion ban,” she writes.
Just to be clear, the partial-birth abortion ban outlawed a particular abortion technique. It was not a “national abortion ban.” This is typical of Culp-Ressler’s own emotional language and slipshod explanations.
Of course when it serves her purposes, Culp-Ressler uses vague, sterile, dehumanizing language. So what happens in a D&E abortion?
It involves dilating the cervix and using surgical instruments to remove the fetal and placental tissue.
Note that in the sentence before, Culp-Ressler writes
This type of abortion, which takes about 30 minutes to perform, has become the standard practice for terminating a pregnancy after 12 weeks.
What does that mean? If you go to the National Right to Life factsheet on The Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act, you’ll read
Before the first trimester ends, the unborn child has a beating heart and is making her own blood, often a different blood type than her mother’s. The unborn child has brain waves, legs, arms, eyelids, toes, and fingerprints. Every organ (kidneys, liver, brain, etc.) is in place, and even teeth and fingernails have developed. The unborn child can turn her head and even frown. She can kick, swim, and grasp objects placed in her hand. Dismemberment abortions– preformed on unborn children as old as 24 weeks – occur after the baby has met these milestones. Any unborn child aborted using the Dismemberment Abortion procedure after 20 weeks would feel the pain of being ripped apart during the abortion.
This is “fetal and placental tissue”?
There are many misstatements/errors/misdirections in Culp-Ressler’s piece which we’ll address this week. Here is one more. She sneers
National Right to Life is trotting out its renderings of the D&E procedure.
Get it? By Culp-Ressler’s rendering, the graphic you see on this page is something somebody at National Right to Life threw together. In fact, as Mr. Bair wrote yesterday that graphic is an off-the-shelf image from the standard catalog of images produced by Nucleus Medical Art, a leading provider (probably the leading provider) of the technical medical illustrations used in every area of medical education. The drawing was not commissioned by NRLC, nor altered by NRLC. The image is NMA’s depiction of a D&E abortion at 23 weeks LMP (21 weeks fetal age).
We’ll debunk a few more desperate pro-abortion ploys tomorrow.