on the occasion of the March for Life

on the occasion of the march for life, here is a repost from September 2008 of a survivor of an attempt to end her life:

here is a clip of a talk by a young lady who survived an attempt on her life and lived to tell the tale (albeit with scars). Makes for an interesting point of view on life. she gets the God centered view better than most of us.

hat tip to Adrian Warnock.

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Roe v. Wade @37

37 years ago the Supreme Court issued its opinion legalizing abortion by fiat nationwide. That legally unsupportable seizure of state police authority remains in effect today, but there are increasing signs of cracks in the abortion on demand edifice.

Science and technology have marched ahead. 4d ultrasound and better resolution on regular ultrasound show any observer the reality of the presence of a human being in the womb. As a result of using these techniques to produce “better” and safer abortions, many abortion workers are faced with the undeniable truth of their actions and become converts to the pro-life cause.

Here is an interesting article “Mugged by Ultrasound” that investigates this phenomenon. very interesting reading.

[A]dvances in ultrasound imaging and abortion procedures have forced providers ever closer to the nub of their work. Especially in abortions performed far enough along in gestation that the fetus is recognizably a tiny baby, this intimacy exacts an emotional toll, stirring sentiments for which doctors, nurses, and aides are sometimes unprepared. Most apparently have managed to reconcile their belief in the right to abortion with their revulsion at dying and dead fetuses, but a noteworthy number have found the conflict unbearable and have defected to the pro-life cause.
…..
But although D&E is better for the patient, it brings emotional distress for the abortionist, who, after inserting laminaria that cause the cervix to dilate, must dismember and remove the fetus with forceps. One early study, by abortionists Warren Hern and Billie Corrigan, found that although all of their staff members “approved of second trimester abortion in principle,” there “were few positive comments about D&E itself.” Reactions included “shock, dismay, amazement, disgust, fear, and sadness.” A more ambitious study published the following year, in the September 1979 issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, confirmed Hern and Corrigan’s findings. It found “strong emotional reactions during or following the procedures and occasional disquieting dreams.”

Another study, published in the October 1989 issue of Social Science and Medicine noted that abortion providers were pained by encounters with the fetus regardless of how committed they were to abortion rights. It seems that no amount of ideological conviction can inoculate providers against negative emotional reactions to abortion.

Kay Bailey Hutchison on abortion

just now at the debate, Senator Hutchison ducked the question on whether she supports Roe v. Wade or not. She does. She has been explicit about her strong support for it in the past.

Here she is in 1993:

UPDATE:

From Texas Alliance for Life

[I]n 2003, [Hutchison] voted for a resolution that stated “‘It is the sense of the Senate that the decision of the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade was appropriate and secures an important constitutional right; and such decision should not be overturned.”

She has also voted twice in favor of embryonic stem cell research, which requires the destruction of human embryos.

“Always” on the side of life? Hardly.

a change of heart

interesting story of the conversion of a planned parenthood center director from providing abortions to pro-life. Probably everybody has seen this already, but just in case you haven’t, here it is.

hat tip to just about everybody that I normally read.

abortion as genocide

Margaret Sanger and her monstrous eugenic aspirations for abortion on demand appear to be bearing fruit.

Abortion kills more black Americans than the seven leading causes of death combined, according to data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for 2005, the latest year for which the abortion numbers are available.

Abortion killed at least 203,991 blacks in the 36 states and two cities (New York City and the District of Columbia) that reported abortions by race in 2005, according to the CDC.  During that same year, according to the CDC, a total of 198,385 blacks nationwide died from heart disease, cancer, strokes, accidents, diabetes, homicide, and chronic lower respiratory diseases combined.  These were the seven leading causes of death for black Americans that year.

HT to Challies

two other small data points on this issue.

Here is Kathryn Lopez’s explication of Margaret Sanger and Planned Parenthood.

and here is the Republican candidate for Congress in NY’s 23d district, Dede Scozzafava accepting the Margaret Sanger award. No wonder the third party candidacy of Doug Hoffman on the Conservative Party line is likely to either win or at least finish in second ahead of such a “republican” or as Mark Steyn calls her a DIABLO (Democrat in all but label only).

Another hard one

Stand to Reason Blog found a place on the net called “The Abortioneers” which has since disappeared but remains visible in Google cache. Here is the paper abstract and information.

the article by L Harris is very interesting stuff. she acknowledges her deep ambivalence at performing abortions:

To reflect seriously on the question of how providers determine their limit for abortion, one must be willing to cross borders and boundaries (including seemingly inflexible ones like “pro-choice” and “pro-life”). Therefore, speaking as a provider, I will focus on aspects of abortion care that we don’t normally talk about, issues for which no room has been made in current pro-choice abortion discourse, many of which may frankly be too dangerous for pro-choice movements to acknowledge. They are:

• personal and psychological aspects of second trimester abortion provision

• visual and visceral dimensions of second trimester abortion

• violence inherent in abortion, especially apparent in the second trimester

• legitimate ethical and moral issues providers may have with second trimester abortion, as distinct from first trimester abortion.

There are reasons for the noticeable silence on these more difficult aspects of abortion service provision, as I will discuss. However, ultimately, I argue that this silence is harmful to individual providers, to the abortion rights movement itself, to public opinion around abortion, and perhaps most importantly, to the women and couples who need our services. I will make the case for a new kind of abortion and pro-choice discourse – one which is honest about the nature of abortion procedures – and which uses this honesty to strengthen abortion care

especially personal here:

When I was a little over 18 weeks pregnant with my now pre-school child, I did a second trimester abortion for a patient who was also a little over 18 weeks pregnant. As I reviewed her chart I realised that I was more interested than usual in seeing the fetal parts when I was done, since they would so closely resemble those of my own fetus. I went about doing the procedure as usual, removed the laminaria I had placed earlier and confirmed I had adequate dilation. I used electrical suction to remove the amniotic fluid, picked up my forceps and began to remove the fetus in parts, as I always did. I felt lucky that this one was already in the breech position – it would make grasping small parts (legs and arms) a little easier. With my first pass of the forceps, I grasped an extremity and began to pull it down. I could see a small foot hanging from the teeth of my forceps. With a quick tug, I separated the leg. Precisely at that moment, I felt a kick – a fluttery “thump, thump” in my own uterus. It was one of the first times I felt fetal movement. There was a leg and foot in my forceps, and a “thump, thump” in my abdomen. Instantly, tears were streaming from my eyes – without me – meaning my conscious brain – even being aware of what was going on. I felt as if my response had come entirely from my body, bypassing my usual cognitive processing completely. A message seemed to travel from my hand and my uterus to my tear ducts. It was an overwhelming feeling – a brutally visceral response – heartfelt and unmediated by my training or my feminist pro-choice politics. It was one of the more raw moments in my life. Doing second trimester abortions did not get easier after my pregnancy; in fact, dealing with little infant parts of my born baby only made dealing with dismembered fetal parts sadder.

The point is that, visually and viscerally, doing an 18-week abortion is different from doing an eight-week abortion. Removing a microscopic fetus and gestational sac is visually and viscerally different from removing what looks like a fully formed but small baby. Though I focus on D&E here, similar difficulties hold true for second trimester medical abortion.

What do you do with experiences and sensations like mine? Providers of second trimester abortions see things that most people don’t. What kind of dissociative process inside us allows us to do this routinely? What normal person does this kind of work? This brings me to the issue of violence.

and here is her conclusion on violence:

It is worth considering for a moment the relationship of feminism to violence. In general feminism is a peaceful movement. It does not condone violent problem-solving, and opposes war and capital punishment. But abortion is a version of violence. What do we do with that contradiction? How do we incorporate it into what we are as a movement, in particular a feminist movement? In feminist sociological and anthropological literature, the permissibility of acknowledging the legitimacy of any “pro-life” arguments is in dispute. Some scholars consider the possibility that understanding the anti-abortion side of things is all right, and in fact may lead the way to finding common ground with those who oppose abortion.[16], [17] and [18] Others argue that there is no room for compromise or finding a middle ground – that there is no ground to give up in this hard fought battle.19

But where does that leave the abortion provider and team? What do we do when caught between pro-choice discourse that, while it reflects our values, does not accurately reflect the full extent of our experience of abortion and in fact contradicts an enormous part of it, and the anti-abortion discourse and imagery that may actually be more closely aligned to our experience but is based in values we do not share? Where do we go to talk about it? It is one of the notable gaps, silences in the provision of abortion care – I would argue to the detriment of the pro-choice movement, and in particular to more widespread availability of second trimester abortion.

but yet, even in the face of all of that ambivalence and recognition of the reality of what she is doing, she remains unalterably committed to abortion on demand. ” I must add, however, that I consider declining a woman’s request for abortion also to be an act of unspeakable violence.”

and check this bit out:

We might conclude at this point that a provider who feels that abortion is violent is simply ambivalent, conflicted, is not really committed to women’s abortion rights, and just shouldn’t be doing this work. “Pro-life” supporters may argue that the kind of stories and sentiments I’ve relayed spell the end of abortion – that honest speech acts regarding the reality of abortion will weaken the pro-choice movement to the point where it cannot sustain itself any longer. I want to make the case that honesty about abortion work can be the basis for a stronger movement – one that makes it easier for providers and the teams they work with to do all abortions, especially second trimester abortions.

There are ethical and moral positions that make complete sense of the position that says women should have full access to abortion – but simultaneously allow for discomfort with aborted second trimester fetuses. Two traditions prevail in philosophical discussions of abortion and the fetus: conservative views based in natural law, which argue for the inviolability of fetal life from the moment of conception; and liberal views based in Enlightenment principles, in which what matters most is an achievement reached – sentience or birth.22

Really, what can you say? Stand to Reason points out the extreme capability of the human mind to deal with cognitive dissonance with rationalization. That is a fair observation. but keep in mind always that there is a destroying deceitful deceiving adversary helping us selfish self-centered human beings in our rationalization process.

HT to the Z man again.

the mechanics of a D&X

courtesy of Vitamin Z here is the deposition testimony of Dr. Carhart from the University of Nebraska about the particulars of his method of abortion.

Just read it, if you can, but I warn you that it is deeply disturbing.  This must stop.  there is more at the link above if you really want to see it.

Question: Are there times when you don’t remove the fetus intact?

Carhart: Yes, sir.

Question: Can you tell me about that, when that occurs?

Carhart: That occurs when the tissue fragments, or frequently when you rupture the membranes, an arm will spontaneously prolapse through the oz. I think most…statistically the most common presentation, we talk about the forehead or the skull being first. We talked about the feet being first, but I think in probably the great majority of terminations, it’s what they world call a transverse lie, so really you’re looking at a side profile of a curved fetus. When the patient…the uterus is already starting to contract and they are starting to miscarry, when you rupture the waters, usually something prolapses through the uterine, through the cervical os, not always, but very often an extremity will.

Question: What do you do then?

Carhart: My normal course would be to dismember that extremity and then go back and try to take the fetus out either foot or skull first, whatever end I can get to first.

Question: How do you go about dismembering that extremity?

Carhart: Just traction and rotation, grasping the portion that you can get a hold of which would be usually somewhere up the shaft of the exposed portion of the fetus, pulling down on it through the os, using the internal os as your counter-traction and rotating to dismember the shoulder or the hip or whatever it would be. Sometimes you will get one leg and you can’t get the other leg out.

Question: In that situation, are you, when you pull on the arm and remove it, is the fetus still alive?

Carhart: Yes.

Question: In that situation, are you, when you pull on the arm and remove it, is the fetus still alive?

Carhart: Yes

Question: Do you consider an arm, for example, to be a substantial portion of the fetus?

Carhart: In the way I read it, I think if I lost my arm, that would be a substantial loss to me. I think I would have to interpret it that way.

Question: And then what happens next after you remove the arm? You then try to remove the rest of the fetus?

Carhart: Then I would go back and attempt to either bring the feet down or bring the skull down, or even sometimes you bring the other arm down and remove that also and then get the feet down.

Question: At what point is the fetus…does the fetus die during that process?

Carhart: I don’t really know. I know that the fetus is alive during the process most of the time because I can see fetal heartbeat on the ultrasound.