By Dave Andrusko
If I am going to write a story that fairly represents what the other side says, I have to “suspend disbelief.” That is (to take one definition), “temporarily allow oneself to believe something that isn’t true, especially in order to enjoy a work of fiction.”
I thought of that as I read the prepared testimony of Fatima Goss Graves , who is President and CEO of the National Women’s Law Center. She was one of five witnesses to testify today at the Senate Committee on the Judiciary’s hearing on “The Infant Patient: Ensuring Appropriate Medical Care for Children Born Alive.”
To be clear, while it did read like fiction, I didn’t “enjoy” a syllable. But only by trying to get inside the mind of someone who thinks like Ms. Goss Graves can I begin to fathom what is, to me, rank cruelty and utter disregard for babies who somehow survive the abortionist’s best efforts to kill them.
Let me back up for a second. NRL News Today reposted the opening statement of Sen. Sasse (R-Neb.), the author of the bipartisan Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. Sen. Sasse knew in advance that opponents would misrepresent what the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act would do. But he tried his best to clear away the rhetorical brush.
As Sen. Sasse said, “This hearing isn’t a debate about third-trimester, or second-trimester, or first-trimester abortion. This hearing is about making sure that every newborn baby has a fighting chance – whether she’s born in a labor and delivery ward or whether she’s born in an abortion clinic.” That is, “It makes sure that a baby that is born alive during a botched abortion would be given the same level of medical care that would be provided to any other baby at that same gestational stage. ”
As I have written many times, no more care but no less.
Enter Ms. Goss Graves to illustrate exactly what Sen. Sasse anticipated. She portrayed her organization as “dedicated to the advancement and protection of women’s legal rights and opportunities,” unless you are an unborn female or a female abortion survivor.
If you did not read the bill, or listen to explanations by the bushelful of what the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act actually will accomplish (if ever pro-abortion Democrats in the House allow hearings to be held and a vote taken), reading Ms. Goss Graves you would think that the primary objectives are to risk mothers’ health and inflict needless pain on abortion survivors.
The demagoguery gets worse. What’s the motivation of proponents of the bill? Certainly not elementary compassion for helpless babies. Naw, couldn’t be that.
Goss Graves explained to the senators who we are by comparing and contrasting. Whereas opponents are forwarding “legislation that protects and expands people’s right to make their own decisions about whether, when, and how to start families,” proponents are threatened by how a “broader movement” (of which abortion is a key component) “will transform the relationship between gender and power in this country.”
It is the oldest chestnut in the pro-abortion cabinet—“some legislators [men, of course] feel threatened and are using their power to stop this progress. They are using abortion restrictions to control the lives and futures of women, denying them basic equality. And they are hiding this motive behind false and misleading rhetoric about abortion care later in pregnancy.”
She ends her testimony with this stem-winder: The “misogyny that drives these restrictions on abortion care drives much of the opposition we see in our other efforts to advance gender justice. Gender justice is impossible as long as the right to abortion and ability to access abortion care is eroded.”
So if abortionists are explicitly required to afford a baby born alive during an abortion “the same degree” of care that would apply “to any other child born alive at the same gestational age,” including transportation to a hospital, their goal is to “undermine gender justice”?
If the legislation doesn’t specify any particular type of medical care, only equal care, it nonetheless is steeped in “misogyny”?
If everything we are talking about deals with the level of care afforded after the woman has an abortion, still we are to believe it “is an attempt to restrict women’s freedom to make important decisions about if and when to start a family”?
What poppycock! Want to read something that is washed in care and bathed in love for babies in distress?
Neonatologist Robin Pierucci, MD, MA, also testified today. She refused to make invidious distinctions about survivors based on whether the physician tried to deliver them alive or kill them.
Dr. Pierucci said early in her testimony, “Without hesitation, if born alive, all babies should be assessed and then receive the appropriate degree of intervention as outlined by the Neonatal Resuscitation Program (NRP).” [My emphasis.]
She concluded her testimony which moved me to tears with this:
A newborn’s first and primary diagnosis is, it’s a baby. All other diagnoses (prematurity, respiratory distress, sepsis, etc) are secondary and never negate the first one. Because of their preeminent diagnosis, (human baby), we are always obligated to care, whether or not we have the ability to heal. This means that all human babies who are born alive are our patients and as such, medical personnel should be ready to either directly provide the medical standard of care or be prepared to stabilize the baby until a team with more advanced training arrives.