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Kermit Gosnell: logical end of abortion



In loving memory of the innocent victims of abortion

Kermit Gosnell, MD, is today’s poster boy for abortion. Wanted poster, that is. Wanted for practicing his trade in the foulest way anyone can remember seeing. Wanted for running a slaughterhouse out of a 1960s horror movie.

Wanted, in other words, for telling, and acting out, the unvarnished truth about abortion. He is the most honest (that is, “straightforward”) of all who call themselves physicians, yet practice abortion.

Latest on the Kermit Gosnell trial

Kermit Gosnell, logical end of abortion

Kermit Gosnell. Photo: The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The trial of People of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Kermit Gosnell, MD will soon go to the jury. Closing arguments should take place this morning. The judge expects to “charge the jury” tomorrow.

At least one reporter has covered the Kermit Gosnell trial from the start: Joseph A. Slobodzian of The Philadelphia Inquirer. One can read all articles about Kermit Gosnell, by Slobodzian and others, here.

The counsel for the defense had not even tried to defend his conduct. Lawyer Jack McMahon did get a directed verdict of acquittal on some of the counts Kermit Gosnell faces. But the judge did not dismiss every charge – and the charges he still faces could land him on death row. Charges that he went past abortion, to infanticide – killing four infants already born. And a charge that he caused an adult patient to die.

So Kermit Gosnell and his lawyer knew he still faces charges he ought to defend. A judge throws out a charge, only when he doesn’t want to waste a jury’s time. So the jury will hear only one side (subject to cross-examination, true enough). Yet Kermit Gosnell didn’t take the stand. Not only that; his lawyer did not call one single witness in his defense.


Slobodzian calls Kermit Gosnell “enigmatic.” He must think it strange that Kermit Gosnell should smile as police lead him back to jail. And maybe that his lawyer should call no witnesses at all – just rest the defense case after saying nothing to the charges.

But is Kermit Gosnell really doing anything so strange? After all, he knows he has done nothing that does not follow in perfect logic from allowing abortion at any stage of human development.

What rights does a baby have?

If a baby does not have a right to life from the moment of its conception, when does he or she have that right? To say, “When [he or she] is born” won’t hold. What objective fact gives a baby a right to life after birth, but not before? Does not a baby still depend for sustenance on some adult or adults? What, then, is the difference between “abortion” a baby before birth, and exposing that baby after birth?

That’s how Romans used to get rid of the babies they did not want. Many of those babies survived only because some of the first Christians found them on the street and took them in.

The line between “too late” and “early enough” for abortion has always been purely arbitrary. Justice Harry Blackmun must have known this when he wrote the Roe v. Wade decision.


For the stage subsequent to viability the State, in promoting its interest in the potentiality of human life, may, if it chooses, regulate, and even proscribe, abortion except where necessary, in appropriate medical judgment, for the preservation of the life or health of the mother.

Viability, the learned Justice said. And what defines viability? Every honest doctor knows that viability will occur ever earlier during pregnancy. Doctors learn more every year about how to save babies born sooner than ever. How can doctors, as a community, strive to keep premature babies alive while claiming they have the right to kill them if the mother wants?

It’s worse than that. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) once said a baby has no rights until the mother brings the baby home. (Clip One, go.) And Peter W. Singer, a professor at Princeton University, once said parents should have the right to kill their children up to one month after they are born.

Today many who support abortion, recoil in horror at the deeds of Kermit Gosnell. But why should he shock them with what he does? They have never once advanced one single logical argument against him.

Kermit Gosnell is not alone

Witnesses are coming forth to remind us: Kermit Gosnell is not the only straightforward and “honest” abortionist. Lila Rose caught one employee at a clinic in the Bronx saying the staff would not let a baby live if he or she somehow survived the procedure. Melinda Henneberger, at The Washington Post, to her credit, followed up on this.

Where’s the coverage of extreme views at the other end of the spectrum? Of, for instance, the jaw-dropping testimony of Planned Parenthood official Alisa LaPolt Snow? When asked by a Florida lawmaker what kind of medical care the organization thinks a child who somehow survives a late-term abortion should get, Snow suggested that even then, the child’s fate is a woman’s right to choose.

Clip Three, go! And kudos to you, Ms. Henneberger, for mentioning it. And for calling out de facto President Obama for his insensitive remarks when he addressed Planned Parenthood at their annual meeting last Friday.


This is more than one can say for the WaPo editorial board. They castigated Virginia officials for shutting down an abortion mill that was not up to a hospital-style building code. That it was the same code that applied to any other hospital or outpatient clinic, didn’t matter to the Board. And when that Board speaks of “arbitrary manifestations of the state’s overweening power,” they are truly hypocritical. This Board has never protested such “arbitrary manifestations of the state’s overweening power” as Obamacare, or the latest EPA regulations against carbon dioxide.

And what shall we make of spectacles like this? Babies are born alive, and left to die, all the time. For instance:

After the saline abortion, the baby was born alive. Shocked, I appealed to the nurse saying, “Hey, he’s trying to live, help him!” She replied, “I can’t because they’ve signed the papers that he’s dead.”

They’ve already signed the papers? What in the name of the Evangelist St. Luke has this to do with the price of marijuana in Mexico?

Kermit Gosnell’s only mistakes lay in running a squalid, dirty clinic, so that someone would check out the smells and find out what was making them. Had he run his clinic with strict aseptic technique, no one would have paid a bit of attention. Nor would it make a bit of difference. Murder is murder, whether someone does it before “viability,” or after, or even after birth itself. ARVE Error: need id and provider
ARVE Error: need id and provider
ARVE Error: need id and provider


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Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

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