Monday, October 31, 2005

Paper available on waiting periods

You can download a PDF copy of Mandatory Waiting Periods for Abortions and Female Mental Health:
Abstract:
Proponents of laws requiring a waiting period before a woman can receive an abortion argue that these cooling off periods protect against rash decisions on the part of women in the event of unplanned pregnancies. Opponents claim, at best, waiting periods have no effect on decision-making and, at worst, they subject women to additional mental anguish and stress. In this article, I examine these competing claims using adult female suicide rates at the state level as a proxy for mental health. Panel data analyses suggest that the adoption of mandatory waiting periods reduce suicide rates by about 10 percent, and this effect is statistically significant. The result is robust to various attempts to control for unobservable heterogeneity and simultaneity

The article is very technical and I have a difficult time following it. I'd appreciate if anybody could translate it!

Two more October deaths to remember

I don't have specific dates for these deaths; both women died sometime in October.

A Philadelphia boarding house owner reported that in early October of 1839, a Dr. Henry Chauncey appeared at breakfast time. "He made me make some tea of a powder that looked like black pepper." The tea was given to 21-year-old Eliza Sowers, a paper mill worker. She'd been brought to the boarding house by Chauncey the day before.

At around 2:00 the following morning, Eliza called to the boarding house owner. "She said she was very bad. She said, 'I won't take any more of that doctor's medicine; it will kill me.'" Chauncey returned later, performing some sort of procedure upon Eliza with something "which shined and looked like a knitting needle," according to the owner of the boarding house. Chauncey said that Eliza was "the most difficult person he had ever operated on. Said the medicine he gave her was too powerful, and had acted too quick."

Eliza died from the ministrations of Dr. Chauncey. The trial revealed that Eliza had been seduced by William Nixon, her superintendant at the paper mill.

In October of 1992, 19-year-old Arlin Della Cruz disappeared from her Pennsylvania home. A search found her hanging from a tree in a nearby woods. "Under her shirt, the coroner found Arlin's favorite stuffed animal -- a rabbit." Arlin's mother said that Arlin had left a suicide note saying that she wanted to go be with her baby. One of Arlin's friends reported that Arlin wanted the baby, but chose abortion to try to salvage her relationship with her boyfriend.

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Blog roundup

Jack's Raging Mommy is trying to sort out what she thinks about abortion, and put it into words that others can understand. She sounds like a "reticent prochoice" to me -- somebody who really hates the idea of abortion, but doesn't feel like it's right to translate that into outright opposition. This is a thoughtful woman, and I'm sure many of my regulars from both sides will be interested.

Erica just did a home pregnancy test that came up positive, and is planning to call on Monday and arrange an abortion. Prayers and love for her and her baby and the men in her life.

Lindsay Land has an interesting comment about people who favor abortion but oppose the death penalty.

Minivan Mom alerts us to a PBS documentary lamenting that there's only one abortion facility left in Mississippi. Funny, for all the keening and hand-wringing, there's not been a rash of coathanger-impaled women on Mississippi lawns. Nor in South Dakota, which likewise only has one abortionist.

New PP poll on why women abort

Planned Parenthood has published the results of their latest research on reasons women give for undergoing induced abortions.
RESULTS: The reasons most frequently cited were that having a child would interfere with a woman's education, work or ability to care for dependents (74%); that she could not afford a baby now (73%); and that she did not want to be a single mother or was having relationship problems (48%). Nearly four in 10 women said they had completed their childbearing, and almost one-third were not ready to have a child.

There's an interesting reflection on "maternal and fetal indications." Most people would probably assume that the woman has a severe health problem such that her doctor is recommending an abortion, or that she's discovered that the fetus has a severe birth defect. But what the in-depth interviews found was different:
Seven percent of women cited health concerns for themselves or possible problems affecting the health of the fetus as their most important reason....

Women who felt that their fetus's health had been compromised cited concerns such as a lack of prenatal care, the risk of birth defects due to advanced maternal age, a history of miscarriages, maternal cocaine use and fetal exposure to prescription medications. Concerns about personal health included chronic and life-threatening conditions such as depression, advanced maternal age and toxemia.

In other words, the seven percent of abortions sought for "maternal and fetal indications" includes women who self-referred for abortion based on their own perception of risks. The survey did not in any way break down the statistics or make any effort to verify that the woman's perception was accurate. Also, the research did not indicate if these women were given any information by the provider about the actual risks, as opposed to their perceived risks.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

IVF parents can't sue for death of embryos

Fox News reports on an Arizona court decision. A Phoenix-area couple had sued the Mayo Clinic for losing or destroying their frozen embryos, and wanted to sue the clinic for the wrongful death of their unborn offspring. The court assumed what it called the "neutral" term "pre-embyros" to describe the embryos in declaring that they were not "persons" under the law.

This is, of course, nonsensical. "Pre-embryo" is a term that was devised specifically in order to de-humanize the embryos that are conceived in-vitro. Up until people started wanting to flush them down the sink, the term "pre-embryo" didn't exist. It's like calling a newborn a "pre-baby" until you figure out if you want to euthanize it or not.

So, strike one more blow against parents who actually want to protect their unborn children. If you think that the prochoice movement only affects you if you want an abortion, you're dead wrong. And it can be your own unborn offspring that die as a result. And you'll be left with no legal recourse.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Social worker helps cover up statutory rape

A social worker arranged an abortion for an underage girl. In destroying the fetus, she also destroyed the evidence that the police needed to charge the girl's abuser. Law enforcement was not encouraging an abortion; they just wanted to do a DNA test on the fetus to verify who the abuser was.

Susan L. Taylor, 57, was arrested and charged with obstruction of justice.

Now, if what this social worker wanted was to "help" the girl, she could have easily arranged for the abortion facility to provide the aborted fetus to the prosecutor so that DNA testing could be performed. So what the heck was she trying to accomplish?

Safe-n-legal anniversary: Giselene Lafontant

On October 9, 1993, 25-year-old Giselene Lafontant underwent an abortion by a Dr. Scher at Gynecare in Monsey, New York. She was 9 or 10 weeks pregnant. Within 20 minutes, Giselene had no pulse. She was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital and placed on a respirator. Efforts to save her life failed; Giselene died on October 28.

Anniversary -- Heiress died

At 11 AM on October 17, 1947, Dr. Paul Singer, a gynecologist, called police and reported that a woman had come to his office suffering from an incomplete abortion. He said that he had taken 22-year-old Jane Ward, heir to the Drake Bakeries fortune, to Park East Hospital, where Dr. Oswald Glasberg, a plastic surgeon, had helped him to complete the abortion. Jane died on October 28, and the autopsy confirmed the cause of death as criminal abortion.

After the death, Singer and Glasberg were arrested and released on bail. The baby's father, Eduardo Schneidewind, a trade promotion executive for a South American government, was questioned as a material witness but was never indicted. Dr. Alejandro Ovalle, an X-ray technician, was sentenced to one year after pleading guilty as an accessory, having profited from abortion referrals. Singer was convicted of manslaughter in Jane's death, and sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison. The judge, Francis L. Valente, said that Jane had been subjected to "surgical mayhem," and that Singer and Glassberg were "completely devoid of human feeling and decency."

Glassberg was also convicted and sentenced to prison, but was never sentenced because six hours after the verdict on June 14, 1948, Glassberg committed suicide in his cell, having poisoned himself.

Singer appealed his conviction, which was upheld.

Jane Ward's tragic death underscores points we would do well to remember:
  • If illegal abortion was a privilege of the wealthy, so was illegal abortion death.
  • Most illegal abortions were performed by doctors, not by amateurs.
  • Having a doctor do your abortion doesn't mean you'll survive it.
  • In illegal abortions, the abortionist and his accomplices faced some risks themselves; the woman wasn't the only person to suffer if something went wrong.

Astonishing poll results on stem-cells, cloning

Read The Great Stem Sell and Other Mistakes, on Christianity Today Online. In a nutshell, Americans aren't nearly as enamored of cloning and destroying embryos for their stem cells as the MSM would have you believe.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Not surprising...

Thanks to Ashli at The S.I.C.L.E. Cell for alerting me to this: Planned Parenthood admits to "social marketing" of hypersexuality and abortion. From the press release by Life Decisions International:
Douglas R. Scott... blasted Planned Parenthood for its ongoing efforts to "morally bankrupt" society. ....

Scott ... pointed to an article titled "Social Marketing for Sexual Health," written by Michael McGee, vice president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America's (PPFA) education and social marketing group. "Sexuality educators want to change the world...No small task," McGee wrote. "Changing the world to reflect our vision takes courage, intelligent use of resources, and enormous commitment. One exciting strategy we are beginning to use is social marketing for sexual health." McGee said PPFA's goals are "audacious--as they have been throughout the history of Planned Parenthood."

.... "We have 'sold' the public on the notion that individuals have the right to decide when and whether they want to have children. Even before the term was coined, we were doing social marketing."

"PPFA's hierarchy admits that it 'sold' abortion to the public," Scott said. "What was once almost universally recognized as bad, Planned Parenthood has turned into a product and convinced people it is good. And not only is the product good, it is essential. PPFA's success has made the group one of the wealthiest so-called nonprofits in the world." ....

PPFA recognizes the power of using "peer educators" to reach other young people. Peer educators "are an ideal constituency to engage in our social marketing effort," McGee observed. "Activist teens can create a buzz about the campaign by a variety of means--regardless of whether the activities are branded or identified as Planned Parenthood. We can explore with these young people their thoughts and feelings about the most effective tactics to engage teens..."

Sad pre-Roe anniversary

Sixteen-year-old Natalie Meyers was brought to San Vicente Hospital in Los Angeles by her mother on October 21, 1972. Milton Gotlib injected saline into Natalie's uterus on the 21st.

On October 22, Natalie expelled the dead baby but retained the placenta. She had trouble breathing and suffered abdominal pain, so San Vicente staff transferred Natalie to County-USC Medical Center just before midnight. Natalie was in shock when she arrived at County-USC. She underwent a D&C there, but remained in shock from infection in her uterus. On October 26, a hysterectomy was performed to try to control the infection, to no avail. Natalie was pronouced dead at 9:35AM on October 27.

The autopsy found most of Natalie's internal organs swollen and hemorrhagic. Death was attributed to hyaline membrane disease (a respiratory distress syndrome) brought on by the abortion.

Blog roundup - Types of prolifers, Christian Libertarians, and abortions for Katrina victims

Chuffing Tiger posts The Five Types of Pro Lifers: Activist, Politician, Believer, Survivor, and Feminist. Count me as a feminist who came uncomfortably close to being a survivor. What are you?

Nathan at retrognosis holds that Christians ought to be Libertarians. Though I disagree on his approach to abortion, I did become a Libertarian for religious reasons so I find his comments pretty interesting.

Jamie Stoltzful points out the cruel irony of offering free abortions to hurricane victims. As she put it, "these people have lost everything they have and now these doctors want to take their babies from them too." Well, that's how they handle the developing world, right? Children are dropping like flies from AIDS, malaria, and diarrhea, and all the Lefties can think to offer them is abortion kits. It's Leftist Snake Oil, good for curing everything but male pattern baldness.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Take this great quiz!

Play Quiz: Population: Bomb or Bottleneck? now!

Come back and tell us your score. I got 7/10.

Coathanger abortions -- how true an image?

One of the strongest images in the abortion-advocacy arsenal is that of the desperate woman who, unable to arrange a legal abortion, harms or even kills herself in an attempt to do the abortion herself. There is no denying that some pregnant women attempt, and even die from, grotesque attacks on their own reproductive organs. But is this phenomenon really a sociological problem, caused by lack of "access" to legal abortion? Or is there something else going on?

Both anecdotal and statistical research show that most women who have trouble arranging a professional abortion will quickly adapt to the pregnancy and even come to welcome the birth of the baby. Dr. Aleck Bourne, who in 1938 successfully fought the British law against abortion, said in his memoirs:
"Those who plead for an extensive relaxation of the law [against abortion] have no idea of the very many cases where a woman who, during the first three months, makes a most impassioned appeal for her pregnancy to be 'finished,' later, when the baby is born, is thankful indeed that it was not killed while still an embryo. During my long years in practice I have had many a letter of the deepest gratitude for refusing to accede to an early appeal."

One of the observations of the 1955 Planned Parenthood conference on abortion was that given the chance to work through their problems, most women would reject abortion. The conference further noted, and Nancy Howell Lee's research confirmed, that the situation before legalization was not one of hoards of women wielding coathangers on themselves. Most women who requested abortion rejected the option on giving the matter more thought. Those who persisted typically managed to arrange an abortion by a physician or a trained para-medical professional with a physician providing backup. How, then, do we explain the women who turned up in emergency rooms and morgues, horribly injured by aggressive attacks on their own gravid wombs?

In exploring the issue of dangerous self-abortion attempts, we have to take into account the fact that these self-abortion attempts very rare. Nancy Howell Lee's research (The Search for an Abortionist) found that dangerous self-abortions were attempted by about 2 percent of the women she surveyed. The Planned Parenthood conference estimated that dangerous amateur abortions (self-attempted or attempted by obviously unqualified others) accounted for perhaps 8 percent of illegal abortions. But even though the self-aborting woman was a rare case, advocates of legalization held them up as proof that society has an obligation to make professional abortion readily available.

We also have to take into account the fact that such abortion attempts persist, even with legal abortion readily available. This is one of the dark, inexplicable secrets of the abortion advocacy movement. In 1982, CDC staffers published "Illegal-Abortion Deaths in the United States: Why Are They Still Occurring?" in Family Planning Perspectives. They noted that illegal abortions ranged from "self-help" abortions done by women who reject the medical establishment, to the stereotypical "coathanger" abortions. They concluded that women seek illegal abortions for "idiosyncratic" reasons, and dropped the issue.

The "self-help" abortions do sometimes result in deaths. As recently as 1994, a young woman died as a result of attempting to abort with pennyroyal tea. But this was not a case of a massive attack on the reproductive tract; this woman was using what she thought was a safe, "gentle," and "natural" process. Such an attempt is a far cry from Drano douches and rusty coathangers.

Why is it that some women, with legal abortion readily available, and with information on "self-help" abortions available, will viciously attack their own bodies, or allow someone else to do so? To say that they were simply trying to dislodge a fetus is facile; there are far safer, less painful means of trying to get rid of a fetus. There is obviously something else going on.

The most coherent explanation for these self-mutilative abortions is evident in the very damage that they do to the woman's body. These self-abortion attempts are most likely manifestations of self-injury, a phenomenon commonly seen in women (and occasionally men) with certain types of mental illness.

Most kinds of self-injury are cuts, bites, and burns with cigarettes. The injuries range from mild bruises and superficial scratches to amputation of limbs, putting out eyes, or castration. Some of the reasons people self injure include reducing tension, expressing emotional pain or rage, self-punishment, manipulativeness, feeling a sense of control of one's body, or expressing or repressing sexuality.

People who self-injure tend to be depressed, very sensitive, and acutely tense. One researcher (Herpertz) believes that some stress increases the anxiety and tension to an overwhelming state. The act of self-injury releases the tension. Some researchers believe that this may be due to brain imbalances; others think it is a learned behavior caused by childhood abuse and/or trauma.

Two researchers, Haines and Williams, found that self-mutilators tend to cope with problems by avoiding them, rather than with problem-solving techniques. This might explain why women who might otherwise self-mutilate will attempt a violent self-induced abortion rather than calmly assess how to arrange a legal abortion or adapt to the pregnancy and arrival of a new baby.

There are common characteristics to people who self-injure. They tend to dislike themselves, be hypersentistive to rejection, be highly impulsive, act based on their immediate emotions, not plan for the future, be depressed and/or suicidal or self-destructive, and be lacking in adequate coping skills. Now, how does all this relate to "coathanger" abortions?

Observations on the traits and behaviors of people who self-harm are in keeping with the research by Nancy Howell Lee on women who sought and obtained pre-legalization abortions. She found that the women who attempted aggressive self-induced or other obviously dangerous abortions tended to be self-destructive, and to themselves view the abortion attempt as more of an attack on themselves than as an attempt to dislodge the fetus. Case reports I've read on self-induced abortion attempts also found that the women did not tend to perceive the fetus as "other," but as an embodiment of their own hated selves. In these cases, the attempt to self-abort was a bizarre attempt at self-destruction.

Given what we know about self-abuse, and about "coathanger" abortions, it is reasonable to conclude that aggressive and dangerous self-abortion attempts are best understood as a type of self-mutilation, and not as rational attempts to end an ill-timed pregnancy. The best service we can do, therefore, to women who might attempt such abortions is to provide the best supportive and psychiatric care to self-injurers, and to ensure that professionals who work with these women are aware that a self-induced abortion might be attempted by these patients should they encounter an unintended or otherwise stressful pregnancy.

Legalizing abortion did nothing for these women; it merely swept the problem under the rug. We need to bring it back into the open and address it rationally and compassionately.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

An example of abortion malpractice

Statistics on abortion complications can't tell you what it's like to endure such a complication. Here is one woman's story, from medical board documents.

A patient identified as "B.J.," age 22, testified in a state hearing that she had an abortion done by Dr. Scott R. Barrett at Central Healthcare Clinic for Women in Springfield, Missouri on February 27, 1990. B.J. was 14.5 weeks pregnant, according to records, and had cervical cancer. She was rendered unconscious for her abortion.

B.J. said that she awoke screaming during her abortion, and begged Barrett to stop. But Barrett proceeded and had an employee clamp a hand over B.J.'s mouth.

B.J. again lost consciousness. She awoke on a chair in the recovery room, with the bottom of her shirt drenched in blood. The next thing she remembered was Barrett carrying her out to her car. A friend drove B.J. to the hospital -- without any clinic staff even accompanying them.

The doctor who performed emergency surgery on B.J. said, "It would take a lot of force, an extreme amount of force to do that kind of damage." B.J. had a 10 centimeter perforation of her uterus, and had lost around 80% of her blood. The ligaments around her uterus were severed, and her right ovary had been torn loose. She had to have her uterus and ovary removed due to the damage.

The note that Barrett sent to the hospital with B.J. described her abortion as "uneventful." The note also failed to disclose all the medications administered to B.J.

The hearing document slams Barrett, noting that "having nearly eviscerated his patient and with her clearly in critical condition, he sent her to the hospital in a private car during rush hour. ... A more egregious example of incompetence and gross negligence is difficult to imagine."

Although B.J.'s records don't say so, other documents show that Barrett did not use legitimate general anesthesia for his abortion patients. Instead, he'd overdose them on Lidocaine, a local anesthetic. This would render the patient unconscious. It would also stop some of them from breathing, but Barrett and his staff were able to revive them -- all but Stacy Ruckman, who died.

Monday, October 24, 2005

This is "empowerment"?

I've been having a discussion in an online forum with a woman who calmly insists that were she ever to become pregnant as a result of rape, she'd abort because she'd simply be unable to cope. The stress, she insists, could very well threaten her sanity and her life.

This isn't the first time I've heard this, nor is rape the only reason a woman's given, calmly and with foresight, that she'd abort because she'd just not be able to cope.

Is this why Susan B. Anthony went to prison? To bring forth a generation of women who plan in advance to be weak, pitiful, and unable to deal with a challenge?

Now, I can understand a woman, in the midst of a crisis -- be it rape or another stressful situation -- not being able to think clearly. I can understand a woman in the midst of a crisis, surrounded by people telling her it's the right thing to do, making an ill-considered decision to abort. But this planning in advance to be fragile, pitiful, weak, totally lacking in any kind of coping capacity, never fails to leave me stunned. This is feminism? This is empowerment?

I am woman, hear me snivel.

Anniversary -- the final sad chapter in a major screw-up

Today, October 24, marks the final end of a tragic screw-up that started on June 2 of 1979, when National Abortion Federation member Atlanta Women's Pavillion rose to new levels of incompetence. Staff there managed to fatally injure two teenage abortion patients in less than an hour.

It all began when 19-year-old Angela Scott stopped breathing in the recovery room. A nurse-anesthetist was administering anesthesia to 14-year-old Delores Smith while Dr. Jacob Adams was performing her abortion. The nurse-anesthetist ran to assist in efforts to revive Angela, leaving Delores unattended with her anesthesia drip still running.

After staff had resuscitated Angela and loaded her into an ambulance, they returned their attention to Delores, who had gone into cardio-respiratory arrest. Adams had accompanied Angela to the Grady Memorial Hospital, and staff refused to release Dolores to an ambulance until the physician had returned to discharge her. This resulted in a 30-minute delay, during which the ambulance crew was unable to attend to Delores or begin transporting her.

Angela lingered for a week in a coma before dying on June 11. Delores never regained consciousness and eventually was admitted to a nursing home, where she died of adult respiratory distress syndrome on October 24, 1979, some time after her fifteenth birthday.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Sad anniversary

On October 16, 1936, 26-year-old Katherine DiDonato, mother of two, was admitted to Roosevelt Hospital to be treated for complications of a criminal abortion. Katherine's husband reported that the abortion had taken place three days earlier. Detectives were told that Katherine had bought pills from drug clerk Hyman Kantor, who had then recommended Dr. Aloysius Mulholland to perform an abortion. Katherine died at 2 AM on October 23. Both Mulholland and Kantor were arrested and charged with homicide. (New York Times 10-23-36)

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Blog roundup - the slippery slope, pro-abortion, and clueless girls

Headmistress at The Common Room has a spot-on post about the slippery slope from the "right" to abort to the "duty" to abort. The first commenter, however, doesn't grasp that there really are proabortion folks in the world. How could Balto miss this fact, when it is so plainly demonstrated in the post itself?

Kennedy v. The Machine looks at the machinations of Emily's List, the PAC created to get pro-abortion Democratic women into office.

KT4JC continues to give us a student's-eye view of the firing of an abortion-facilitating drama teacher. She's getting attacked by the Clueless Brigade -- students and others who don't understand that an abortion-facilitating faculty member is what got Dawn Ravenelle killed in a botched legal abortion.

Sad anniversary: Diane Boyd

Nineteen-year-old Diane Boyd lived in a state institution for the mentally retarded. There, she was beaten and raped in July of 1981, and was later discovered to be pregnant.

An abortion was arranged for Diane at National Abortion Federation member Reproductive Health Services in St. Louis, and Diane's mother signed a consent form. The abortion was performed October 22, 1981. Diane died the next day.

According to suits later filed by Diane's mother, RHS staff and abortionist Robert Crist did not check for possible drug interactions before giving Diane valium and sublimaze. These drugs evidently reacted with Diane's usual medication, thorazine, causing her to stop breathing. Diane's mother said that the clinic lacked heart monitoring equipment or resuscitation equipment.

Diane was not the last woman to die after abortion by Crist. Seventeen-year-old Latatchie Veal bled to death after an abortion by Crist in 1991. Twenty-two-year-old Nichole Williams died of DIC (disseminated intravascular coagulopathy) after an abortion by Crist in 1997.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Blog roundup - the good, the bad, the sad

This provocative post at BestView deserves a visit and some commentary:
Mark Steyn nails abortion
...when you set aside moral objections to abortion, the utilitarian approach is a question of balance. Abortion doesn't fall on all fetuses equally. In China and other Asian cultures, it lowers the pool of girl babies, resulting in very disproportionately male societies. Thus, "a woman’s right to choose" leaves you with a lot fewer women to choose from. Even in America, not all women exercise their right to choose equally: The abortion rate for black women is four times higher than that for white women. "A woman’s right to choose" has become, like so many other "progressive" causes, an issue in which one's enthusiasm for it is inversely proportional to one's engagement with it. For middle-class female Democrats, "a woman’s right to choose" is like "Free Tibet": a bumper sticker that appropriates some other crowd's problem for the purposes of advertising your moral superiority.


Howard at Conservative Democrat seems to be extremely confused:
THERE ARE SOME OTHER IMPORTANT ISSUES THAN REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS IN SELECTING THE FEDERAL JUDICIARY it doesn't just boil down to the abortion debate because there really is no debate-- no one favors abortions( except perhaps William Bennett and his Black crime control program), the question is whether it seems necessary or not --whether the right of a woman to choose to have a child should be taken away by the Federal Government.

1. What's with "reproductive rights?" Why not say what you mean: Aggressive advocacy of abortion and contraception.
2. There are a lot of folks who favor abortion, primarily for people they feel superior to -- or of people they feel superior to, such as fetuses with handicaps.
3. Bennett wasn't advocating abortion -- he was pointing out the appalling amorality of the leftist touting of abortion as a means of reducing crime.
4. Who exactly is opposed to women choosing to have children, outside the Pill-pushing left? The conservatives are against women choosing to abort children, not choosing to bear them.
So Howard managed to fit in four clueless tidbits in a single sentence. The rest of his screed continues in this vein. And old Howard doesn't allow comments, so he can bask in this cluelessness, blissfully unaware that he needs to get out more.

Marc ponders why we need to just pick one age at which you're a grown-up. He points out (justly, I think) that you can have an underage abortion without parental consent, can vote and get drafted at 18, can drive at 16, can't drink until 21, can be tried as an adult at 16.... Good point, Marc!

On a more serious note, msalishia128 is pregnant and dreading the thought of a second abortion within a year. She needs love and prayer.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Good news from Missouri

Operation Rescue reports on the closure of an abortion mill:
The only abortion mill in Springfield, Missouri, the Springfield Healthcare Center, closed unexpectedly Thursday after the board voted unanimously the day before to shut it down.

Clinic Administrator Michele Collins told the Associated Press that the decision had nothing to do with a pending lawsuit challenging a new Missouri law or finances.....

The mill was expected to close anyway because the abortionist, who lives in St. Louis, had no hospital privileges within 30 miles of Springfield, as a new state law mandates. The closest hospital that was available to him was 2 ½ hours away, creating a dangerous situation in the event of abortion complications. The clinic had sued the state to challenge the law. A federal judge had issued an in junction barring the law from going into effect, but now the suit is expected to be dropped.

The AP article indicated that the facility reported about 1,000 abortions a year. The article also states, "The nearest Missouri abortion clinic is 160 miles away in Columbia. St. Louis has a clinic more than 200 miles away, as well as an abortion provider across the state line in Illinois. The Kansas City area is served by a clinic in Overland Park, Kan."

Anniversary -- the dubious benefits of legalization

Carole Schaner was 37 years old when she traveled from Ohio to Buffalo, New York, for a safe and legal abortion. Dr. Jesse Ketchum performed a vaginal hysterotomy abortion on October 20, 1971. Carole was 14 weeks pregnant.

After the abortion, Carole went into shock, and was taken to a hospital. She was in shock when she arrived. Despite all efforts, Carole died before doctors could even fully asssess the extent of her injuries. She left behind four children.

The autopsy found that Carole's cervix and uterus had been cut open, and an artery outside her uterus had been cut. It also noted sutures that had evidently been put in by Ketchum in an attempt to repair the damage. The sutures, however, completely closed Carole's cervix, allowing her to continue bleeding from the injured uterus and artery.

Carole was the second woman to bleed to death after an outpatient hystertomy abortion performed by Ketchum; Margaret Smith had died four months earlier.

Where's the outcry?

There was a huge prochoice outcry when a church in Colorado held funeral services for cremated fetuses. Women screamed from the housetops how violated they felt that their fetuses had been somehow abused in this way. They screamed that they'd been betrayed and their privacy violated. But there's no outcry over the hundreds of fetuses found in a garage near Pittsburgh.

These women were promised that their fetuses would be cremated, but instead they were left to rot in a garage. Where's the outcry? I'm waiting. But I get the feeling I'll be waiting a long time. The only prochoice outcry over improper disposition of fetal remains is when somebody gives them a decent burial. But where's the outcry over these cases:

Two ex-employees of abortionist Jesse Floyd told news reporter they quit after being asked to flush aborted fetuses with recognizable limbs down garbage disposal at his The Ladies Clinic.

An employee of William Malcom Knarr reported that she found a four-inch fetus in the garbage disposal at his clinic. (Source: Affidavit of S.M. dated 10-22-92)

Sidney Knight got in trouble when the Department of Public Works reported that fetuses were disposed of by grinding them and flushing them into the sanitary sewer system. (Source: - DPW letter 12-29-89)

Abortionist Curtis Stover filed an affidavit stating that he vomited after observing abortionist James Park's method of disposing of aborted fetuses of 15 to 22 weeks gestation: he ground them up with a standard kitchen meat grinder and flushed the tissue down the sink. In a letter to the health department, Stover stated that Parks told him he had developed this method because the fetuses would "stop up" the toilet and because he did not want fetuses retrieved from the trash by pro-lifers. (Sources: letter by Stover dated 6-15-92, affidavit by Stover dated 6-15-92; Up The Creek 9-11-92; excerpt from Parks' deposition 2-4-91 Arapahoe County District Court Case No. 90CV432)

A Delaware plumber reportedly told investigators that he installed an "industrial gauge" garbage disposal at Brandywine Valley Women's Center. Employees told investigators that they routinely flushed 8 - 20 week fetuses down the disposal. Director Eric Harrah was reportely fined $43,000 after amitting that he allowed fetuses to be flushed down the garbage disposal at Brandywine and its affiliated Delta Women's Clinic, a National Abortion Federation member facility. (Sources: Wilmington News Journal 12-3-94, 12-4-93, 12-15-93, 8-22-93, 4-16-94, Philadelphia Inquirer 7-11-93)

Abortionist Lawson Akpulonu got in trouble after, among other things, the Medical Board found: "Employees were trained to dump tissue jars into the sink and run the contents through the garbage disposal." (Source: Medical Board Accusation No. D-5286 OAH. No. L-63123)

Hm? I'm waiting....

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Two blogs -- one redundant, one provocative

Garret the Garrulous posts Abortion On Demand - A Necessary Evil. Nothing that's not been said before, including the hoary old assumption that only hardcore Christians have any reason to oppose abortion.

NathanSheets stresses the need to overturn Roe.

Anniversary -- One of many deaths

19-year-old Christina Goesswein, ("Patient A" in medical board documents) went to the office of Dr. Hachamovitch on October 17, 1990, for the first part of the three-day abortion procedure. She was sent home and told to return the following day to have her cervix dilated even further for the abortion, which would take place on the 19th.

She came back on the 18th and had more laminaria inserted. That evening, her boyfriend called the doctor’s office because Christina was having cramping. He was told to give her pain medicine. Christina's boyfriend called again several hours later because he felt that she was running a fever, but Christina told Dr. Hachamovitch’s employee who was taking call that evening that she was okay.

Early in the morning of the 19th, the boyfriend called the employee again because Christina was experiencing heavy bleeding, cramping and vomiting. Christina stated that she felt that she was in labor. The employee instructed Christina to go to the doctor’s office where she and the doctor would meet her. They all met at the office some time between 3:00 and 4:00 a.m. After arriving at the office, Christina lost control of her bowels. Hachamovitch then delivered her 24-week fetus in one piece.

Because Christina was not recovering as she should have, Hachamovitch decided to admit her to an area hospital, but before this could be done, Christina quit breathing and her heart stopped. Somebody called 911 at about 4:20 a.m., and Hachamovitch began CPR. Christina was taken to a Bronx hospital where she was pronounced dead at 6:11 a.m. on October 19, due to an amniotic fluid embolism.

Hachamovitch’s license was suspended over his false documentation regarding administration of oxygen, and the Christina’s blood loss.

"Once Patient A went into cardiopulmonary arrest Respondent failed to properly attempt her resuscitation." The board also found fault with Hachamovitch because he did not "describe adequately … the procedure used to terminate the pregnancy;" "failed to perform and/or record the findings of a gross examination of Patient A’s uterine contents immediately post-abortion;" "intentionally represented in his record for patient A that she received continuous oxygen by mask despite knowing that this was untrue;" "intentionally represented in his record that Patient A had no bleeding at all despite knowing that this was untrue."

Christina wasn't the only woman to die under Hachamovitch's care. Tanya Williamson died in 1996; Luz Rodriguez in 1986; and Jammie Garcia in 1994. Two other women, Lisa Bardsley and Lou Ann Herron, died after abortions by John Biskind in a facility Hachamovitch owned in Arizona.

Monday, October 17, 2005

School cans abortion-facilitating teacher

Naaman the Ex-Lepter reports on a Catholic school in Sacramento that fired a teacher after learning that she was an "escort" at a Planned Parenthood abortion facility.

Naaman has some interesting observations that are well worth perusing. I have to say that I think the school was right to can this woman, provided they first gave her a chance to repent. She's known to facilitate abortions. Given the chance, she'd likely facilitate clandestine abortions for students. She's as great a risk to those girls as a confirmed child molester. The safety of the students comes first.

But, like Naaman, I'd like to chime in on how much this woman needs our prayers.

No choice for Missouri taxpayers

With help from the ACLU, the SCOTUS has ruled that a Missouri prison must transport an inmate for an abortion. Yeah, abortion's legal, but if the ACLU wants this woman's fetus dead, why don't they arrange the transport? I'm sure that the costs for bringing this through the courts was far more than the roughly $350 that would have been needed to arrange transportation for the abortion. Evidenly the only "choice" the ACLU supports is the choice to abort, not the choice to keep one's own hands free of blood.

if this is mother-love, no wonder they support abortion.

CHILDABORTION.INFO evidently pulls no punches. The Choice 101 collection of links starts with the rabidly proabortion Choice 101 site. This little gem features this beginning:
Abortion Rights Are Dying and You Have Three Choices
1 Teach your daughters and granddaughters how to perform coat-hanger abortions.
2 Do what nobody other than our pro-choice team has done -- come up with a new strategy that will save abortion rights -- a strategy that actually works and implement it immediately.
3 Support and/or participate in the fully functional, fully functioning, and already-proven program offered on this web site.

Evidently teaching our daughters to have more self-respect than to settle for abortion never enters these folks' heads. The idea that their daughters might deserve better than to be treated as receptacles for semen is outside their imaginations. They can't grasp the idea that their daughters might be complex human beings who deserve better than to be periodically impregnated and vacuumed out by men who only see them as sex toys.

Abortion. Is that what these people really want for their daughters? This is so creepy and revolting that it makes my skin crawl.

If they're imaginative enough to come up with some magic bullet for protecting abortion, can't they come up with something better for their daughters than an endless cycle of unwanted pregnancies and assembly-line abortions?

Sunday, October 16, 2005

This weekend's anniversaries

On October 15, 1990, 23-year-old Angela Satterfield underwent a legal abortion. The abortionist did not diagnose Angela's ectopic pregnancy. He simply performed an abortion procedure and sent her home. That evening, the undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy ruptured. Angela was found dead in her home. She had hemorrhaged. Her death certificate only mentions the ectopic pregnancy and the hemorrhage, but her autopsy notes the failure of the abortionist to diagnose the ectopic pregnancy.

Life Dynamics lists 19-year-old Maria Lira on their "Blackmun Wall" of women killed by legal abortions. Maria was a college student when she went to Riveria Hospital on October 14, 1974, to undergo an abortion. After she'd been discharged, Maria had problems and returned. Staff perfromed a D&C, then discharged her again. That night, she went to the emergency room due to excessive bleeding. She was sent to Torrance Memorial Hospital for treatment. Maria died at Torrance Memorial on October 16. The autopsy found a decomposing fetus in her uterus, which had caused infection and DIC (disseminated intravacsular coagulopahty). The DIC prevented clotting, causing the hemorrhage that killed Maria.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Who benefits from legalization?

Today is the anniversary of two abortion deaths -- one illegal, one legal.

On October 13, 1939, the body of Barbara Hanson, age 21, was found in a Houston, Texas, motel room. James Carter and George F. Norton pleaded guilty to performing the abortion that killed Barbara, and each received a 5-7 year sentence. Barbara's boyfriend and another man pleaded guilty to accessory charges and were each sentenced to one year.

"Tammy" is one of the women Life Dynamics identifies on their "Blackmun Wall" as having been killed by a legal abortion. Tammy traveled from Ohio to New York to undergo an abortion, which was performed on September 25, 1971. She was 33 years old. After the abortion, Tammy developed an infection which finally ended her life on October 13, 1971.

Both women suffered the same fate. So who benefitted from legalization? The men! Barbara Hanson's boyfriend, and the male abortionists, went to prison. The men involved in Tammy's abortion suffered no consequences.

How, therefore, can we argue that it's the women who benefit from legalization?

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Two sad safe-n-legal anniversaries

Life Dynamics lists 17-year-old Sharonda Rowe on their "Blackmun Wall" of women killed by legal abortions. According to LDI, Sharonda had an abortion done in a doctor's office in Washington, DC on October 11, 1981. She suffered lacerations in her vagina and uterus, causing a massive, fatal air embolism.

L’Echelle Head, age 21, died October 11, 2000, after an abortion at Dayton Women's Health Services. Dayton Right to Life said that L'Echelle was pronounced dead at Samaritan Hospital after she'd been sent home from the clinic. Police had been called to a private residence to investigate the report of an unresponisve 21-year-old woman shortly after 6 p.m. L'Echelle's obituary indicates that she left behind a daughter, her parents, and three sisters. Peggy Lehner of Dayton Right to Life said, "The final results of the autopsy are still pending. From early indications it appeas she suffered some sort of blood clot or embolism."

Dayton Women's Health Services had been caught operating without a license in 1999. It was inspected on October 27, 1999, to see if a license should be granted. Inspectors found rusty instruments, improperly-marked medications, and a failure to follow sterile technique. The clinic administrators were told they'd have to correct the problems to get a license. The clinic got the license after getting a waiver regarding follow-up care for patients.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Another day, three sad anniversaries

Today, October 10, we remember three tragic safe-n-legal deaths.

Twenty-three-year-old Maria Hernandez Ortega traveled from her home in Massahusetts for a legal abortion my Dr. Armida Zepeta in her New York office on October 10, 1970. Zeptea estimated the pregnancy to be two months. She attempted an abortion, but was unable to extract the fetus. She concluded that Maria had not been pregnant after all, and sent her home. At 10:00 that night, Maria died in her home. It turned out that she had actually been four months pregnant, not two months. Zepeta had pushed the fetus through the uterine wall into Maria's abdominal cavity. Maria wasn't the only woman who ended up having an abortion far later in the pregnancy than she intended, nor was the the only one to die because her abortionist miscalculated fetal age. Others include Eurice Agbaaga, Magdalena Rodriguez, and Janet Forster.

Eighteen-year-old Erna Fisher's mother held her hand as Dennis W. Miller performed an abortion on her on March 10, 1988. During the abortion, Erna suddenly sat up, went into convulsions, and began to vomit. Miller continued with the abortion while Erna choked to death on her own vomit. When an ambulance crew arrived, they found Erna's airway still full of vomit. Miller was making no attempt at resuscitation, but was holding Erna in his arms. Miller had already settled six malpractice cases in the Kansas City area. He had failed the Missouri state medical exam three times before finally giving up. It took nine tries for him to pass the exam to be licensed in Kansas. Miller is still practicing medicine in Kansas.

October 10, 1989, 27-year-old Catherine Pierce died in a nursing home in Tennessee from abortion complications that had left her comatose since March 11. She left an 11-year-old daughter motherless. The abortion was performed by Daniel McBrayer at Atlanta Surgi-Center, which had at one time also done business as "Northside Women's Clinic." Catherine went into cardiac arrest while left unattended in recovery. After Catherine was injured, state officials cited this National Abortion Federation facility for administering "the same anesthesia dosages" to patients whose weights ranges from 107 to 167 pounds, inadequate record keeping, and inadequate supervision of patients. Among the patient care problems cited, the investigators also said that they found discrepancies between the number of fetuses sent to the disposal lab and the number of abortions performed. In 1989 Atlanta Surgi-Center had logged 1,748 abortions, but had only sent 155 fetuses for disposal. The investigation into fetus disposal was prompted by local prolifers reporting that they had seen hundreds of fetuses in the clinic's dumpsters. Dr. Gay, the clinic director, denied the allegations. It is possible that Atlanta Surgi-Center is the same facility as the "Atlanta Northside" facility where Geneva Calton had her fatal abortion in 1979.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Off to a rolicking start....

Neorevolutionist at Abortion Arguments hauls out an old Ayn Rand screed:
I cannot project the degree of hatred required to make those women run around in crusades against abortion. Hatred is what they certainly project, not love for the embryos, which is a piece of nonsense no one could experience, but hatred, a virulent hatred for an unnamed object...Their hatred is directed against human beings as such, against the mind, against reason, against ambition, against success, against love, against any value that brings happiness to human life. In compliance with the dishonesty that dominates today's intellectual field, they call themselves 'pro-life.'

Rand displays such a thoroughgoing cluelessness that the mind boggles. This is one quote that makes me wonder if her followers all wear tinfoil hats. Hey, Ayn! Some people actually like babies! Some people actually think that it's in the nature of things for mothers to love their own babies! What part of your befuddled brain can't grasp this? Neorevolutionist claims that "This site provides the most well articulated arguments for the use of abortion." Is that really the best you can come up with, neo? A quote that demonstrates a total lack of understanding of the simple concept of maternal love? You can do better than that!

Let's help neo out here!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Abortion death from history -- Eleanor Haynes

On this day, October 6, in 1937, Eleanor Haynes, age 22, died at Hackensack Hospital in New Jersey. She had indicated that Dr. P. Ralph McFeely had performed an abortion on her. Eleanor's fiancee claimed no knowledge of an abortion. McFeely, a school and police physician who was also president of the local PTA, said that although he was treating Eleanor for a "minor ailment," he had not performed an abortion. McFeely was not indicted due to lack of evidence. (Source: New York Times 10-7-37, 12-9-37)

One of the biggest factors separating the prochoice from the prolife is how they perceive the world of illegal abortions. The prochoice see the greasy old man with a coat hanger lurking in an abandoned warehouse, plying his trade with booze on his breath and lechery in his eye. The prolife see a story substantiated by newspapers: doctors doing abortions on the sly.

A few old cases from the archive of the New York Times serve as examples of doctors entangled in abortion cases. Law enforcement was sometimes unable to tell if the doctor was indeed the guilty party who caused the woman's death, but the prevalence of physician involvement in these old abortion cases underscores the research done by Planned Parenthood and by Nancy Howell Lee: most criminal abortions were done by doctors, and most non-physicians performing illegal abortions had physician accomplices who provided support and equipment.

In May of 1934, 19-year-old actress Annette Camorato, stage name Toni Morgan, died of abortion complications. Dr. Harry A Felice was charged with homicide in Annette's death. Felice, who was Annette's brother-in-law, was later released due to lack of evidence. (Source: New York Times 7-19-35)

On December 31, 1935, criminal abortion charges were dropped against Dr. Tobias Ginsberg, and his nurse, because of insufficient evidence. The two were suspects in the death of 24-year-old Mrs. Edith Eschrich. (Source: New York Times 1-1-36)

On December 23, 1941, Dr. Samuel Roth was sentenced to a year in prison after pleading guilty to manslaughter in the illegal abortion death of a woman. Roth, whose license was suspended at the time, performed the abortion in his office on January 16, 1937. (Source: New York Times 12-24-41)

Dr. Charles I. Gordon pleaded guilty in the 1937 abortion death of a Newark woman. (Source: New York Times 7-31-42)

If so many criminal abortions had doctors involved, why do so many prochoicers cling to the image of the amateur with a coat hanger? There are two reasons.

First, there is an element of reality to it. Perhaps 1 to 2 percent of criminal abortions were indeed done by rank amateurs, using grisly and dangerous methods. And these unskilled abortionists were the ones most likely to put somebody in the morgue or the emergency room. They're also going to be the most memorable. A doctor quietly admitting his patient to a hospital to be treated for a "miscarriage" isn't going to raise any eyebrows. A woman with a mangled, infected uterus, dying in the emergency room as she refuses to divulge the name of her abortionist will get everybody's attention and make a lasting impression.

But there's a second, equally understandable reason why the image of the coat hanger wielding dirty old man persists. There is a political gain to perpetuating the myth. It's hard to raise up a general alarm over the idea that the current crop of physician abortionists will have to go underground. But the image of driving all the physician abortionists out of business, leaving nobody to ream out pregnant women but the proverbial greasy old man with a coat hanger, is alarming. It raises money. It gets people to come to rallies and write letters. It's effective.

There's only one drawback. It's simply not accurate. And the minute the reticent and personally opposed prochoice folks fully realize this, the abortion advocacy industry will be dead in its tracks.

Monday, October 03, 2005

An abortion death the prochoice don't forget

On this date, we remember a woman's abortion death -- and, for a change, the prochoice lament the death, too. The woman is Rosie Jiminez, and the reason the prochoice single out her death as tragic and unacceptable, in contrast to all the other deaths, is that they can find a way to blame it on prolifers.

Rosie had already undergone two free abortions at taxpayer expense. The third time she wanted an abortion, she got steered to an illegal abortionist rather than to either real help or at least the local Planned Parenthood and abortion fund. Rosie got her abortion, the abortionist got a customer, the abortion lobby got a corpse to drag around. Rosie and her family, of course, were the losers in this deal.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Safe-n-Legal Anniversary: Brenda Banks

Brenda Banks was 35 years old and 13 weeks pregnant when she went to Hillcrest Women's Surgi-Center in Washington, DC, for an abortion. The abortion was performed by Llewelyn Crooks on September 30, 1989. Brenda went into shock, and was transported to the hospital by ambulance.

Doctors performed an emergency hysterectomy and transfused Brenda with 20 units of red blood cells, to no avail. She died the following day, October 1, 1989. Brenda's uterus had been perforated and several major blood vessels had been cut or severed entirely.

Her survivors were unable to collect damages from Crooks and Hillcrest because Crooks' insurance company was insolvent, and Hillcrest carried no insurance.

I have been unable to determine if the Hillcrest where Brenda had her abortion is affiliated with the Hillcrest in Pennsylvania where Kelly Morse had her fatal abortion.