In a shocking article recently published by the Associated Press, it was revealed that a Pennsylvania doctor has been charged with eight counts of murder in a case that screams for the public’s attention for many reasons. I will go ahead and warn you now, this is a horribly graphic and heartbreaking account, so please read with discretion. Now it is also important to note that this story is just coming to light, and so the full scope and validity of all of the allegations put forth in the article have yet to be fully substantiated. However, if true, this does highlight a number of points that need to be examined.
Dr. Kermit Gosnell, 69, made millions of dollars over 30 years, performing as many illegal, late-term abortions as he could, prosecutors said. State regulators ignored complaints about him and failed to inspect his clinic since 1993, but no charges were warranted against them given time limits and existing law, District Attorney Seth Williams said. Nine of Gosnell’s employees also were charged.
Gosnell “induced labor, forced the live birth of viable babies in the sixth, seventh, eighth month of pregnancy and then killed those babies by cutting into the back of the neck with scissors and severing their spinal cord,” Williams said.
What makes this story ever the more tragic, is that there were complaints lodged to the State that were not investigated for so long. In fact, if it had not been for complaints about drugs that stemmed from the clinic, investigators would seemingly never have looked into the complaints that were filed. How many of these victims could have been prevented had the State not only listened to the complaints being filed, but acknowledged the overwhelming number of women finding themselves in need of services they could not get anywhere else. So there are numerous implications that Pennsylvanian representatives need to address, and now!
This is a prime example of how the stigma attached to abortion, and the attacks on abortion which limit a woman’s access to safe procedures, gives rise to this kind of barbarism. If you thought that the ‘back-alley’ abortions were just a horror story of the past, then think again. Just now there are clinics like this one where women are subjected to opportunistic and conscienceless practitioners who do not have the patient’s care as a priority at all.
Patients were subjected to squalid and barbaric conditions at Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Society, where Gosnell performed dozens of abortions a day, prosecutors said. He mostly worked overnight hours after his untrained staff administered drugs to induce labor during the day, they said.
The entire story reads like bad fiction, and what makes it all that much worse, is that, as previously mentioned, had the complaints that had been filed been investigated, had one representative from the State looked into the doctor’s background at all, or even looked into the qualifications of the staff so many red flags would have gone off that so much of this could have been stopped. But abortion is such a hot button issue, especially these days with the societal stigma and propaganda machines rolling through community after community, that it seems many politicians want little or nothing to do with it. So getting the oversight right is not always an easy thing to achieve. Just as the threat level from the anti side keeps many qualified and caring professionals from pursuing this line of medical focus, and so the situation gets more desperate.
So many women are unnecessarily put into harms way because of the way abortion has been demonized in public and professional forums. Perhaps we should recognize that the service provided at these clinics is necessary. And when you have stories like this one, where women have nowhere else to turn but to doctors like this, that we recognize that it only demonstrates that need more strongly. Then we could work at removing the stigma. No one is asking anyone to “like” that it is necessary, merely to admit that it is. Then perhaps we can begin getting more safeguards and more qualified, caring professionals in place to prevent horror stories like this from being a reality for some.