By Sarah Terzo
Abortionist Willie Parker describes seeing the body parts of the babies he aborts. He describes how he does a first trimester abortion:
… I insert a straw, called a cannula… and attach that to a suction tube which leads to a canister by my feet. I flip a switch on the canister body, which turns on the vacuum, and, with a circular motion, I sweep the walls of the uterus with the tube. Within the space of a couple of minutes, the products of conception are sucked through the tube and into the canister.
I place the small mass of tissue and blood into a fine mesh strainer that looks like something you’d find in an industrial kitchen, and I run the whole thing for a minute under running water. Then I transfer the contents of the strainer into a square Plexiglas dish, which I place on top of a lightbox. And there, I inspect what has just come out of the woman’s body: what I’m looking for is the fetal sac, which, at a later gestational age, becomes the placenta, and, after nine weeks, every one of the fetal parts – head, body, limbs – like a puzzle that has to be put back together…
I make sure I find every part, and I place them together, re-creating the fetus in the pan. I have done this so many times that it is has become routine: no matter what these parts may look like, this is organic matter that does not add up to anything that can live on its own. This phase of the process is crucial as any other.
Willie Parker, Life’s Work: from the Trenches, A Moral Argument for Choice (New York: 37INK, Atria, 2017), pp. 95 – 96.
Editor’s note. This appears at Clinic Quotes and is reposted with permission.