With the recent release of videos alleging that Planned Parenthood is selling fetal tissue, I thought it would be a good time to update and reprint an old article that examines the difference between mere pregnancy tissue and an unborn baby.
Two common prochoice euphamisms for the fetus destroyed by abortion -- "products of conception" and "pregnancy tissue" -- realy do accurately apply in those unusual circumstances when there is no fetus present in a pregnancy.
The two conditions in which a woman shows all the symptoms of pregnancy but is not sheltering a new human being are gestational trophoblastic disease (GTD) and blighted ovum.
In GTD, the conception results in what is called a "hydatidiform mole." This is a cluster of tissue with an appearance somewhat similar to a bunch of grapes. In blighted ovum, a placenta and amniotic sac form, but there is no fetus in the sac. Some researchers seem to believe that a blighted ova is caused by the same abnormal conception process that causes hydatidiform moles. Others say that they are two different kinds of abnormalities.
Actually, the existence of hydatidiform moles and blighted ova underscore the prolife position. One need only compare a fetus with a blighted ovum or a molar pregnancy of the same gestation age to see very clearly the difference between "pregnancy tissue" and a viable embryonic human being. In fact, even in a partial mole, there is a clear difference between the doomed fetus, which is recognizably a fetus, and the molar tissue. For those of you with a strong stomach, here are a removed mole, a blighted ovum opened after it was expelled, and aborted fetuses, for your comparison:
First Trimester Abortion Photos (Warning: Very Graphic!)
You can see that the mole really is just a blob of tissue. Ditto for the blighted ovum. Nobody is going to be harvesting lungs, liver, thymus, long bones, or neural tissue from either because there are none. When there is a tiny human being present it's different. No matter how thoroughly shredded the embryo is, you can still see recognizable human body parts, such as arms, legs, hands, feet, and face. Only the degree to which the organs are damaged would stop a procurement company from harvesting a heart or a head.
To reiterate for the benefit of the terminally clueless: Prolifers don't oppose removing tissue. We oppose killing fetuses. Any questions?
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