By Anne Fox, President of MCFL
An anonymous doctor who obviously performs abortions but also, apparently, works as an obstetrician, has written an item for The Daily Beast entitled “The Hardest Abortion I've Ever Had to Perform.” We don't know whether this doctor is a man or a woman, so we'll use “Dr U(nknown).” Dr U's bias appears immediately: “… this is a story for Donald Trump and all the other Republicans who have ideas about somehow punishing women who have abortions…” (emphasis in original)
One of Dr U's patients comes to him at 19 weeks because her water has broken. Dr U tells her that she has essentially no chance of having a healthy baby. “Because I was her doctor and it was my job to take care of her, I reviewed the … risks… that might happen if she chose to stay pregnant. … I warned her of infection that would make her very sick very fast and she wouldn't get better until the uterus was empty…. I told her that waiting would not help ‘the pregnancy’ survive…” (Dr U has all the terminology) “…the safest thing would be to induce labor and end her pregnancy” (original emphasis). Apparently Dr U is not aware of the many pregnancies that have been successfully concluded even though the mother's water had broken.
At the time she refused induction. They put her on antibiotics and, after five days, she did develop a raging infection.
"I told her we really didn’t have a choice at this point. The pregnancy was infected, and unlikely to last long, and she was becoming critically ill. Patients like her have died; patients like her that I’ve taken care of have died. I was scared it was too late….”
"I counseled her that we needed to start the induction; shivering, trembling, in the bed, she agreed. I ordered the medicine to start her induction; I went to place the medicine to begin her induction. She agreed to the induction. I started the induction. When I did the exam to place the medication, the patient was already several centimeters dilated. I put the medication away. Her body was trying to save her, and had started emptying her uterus. Ten minutes later, her son—tiny, too tiny—was born. He never had a heartbeat."
Read those last paragraphs very, very carefully.
It seems pretty obvious that Dr U simply let nature take its course, that the poor baby had died from the infection and, therefore, labor had started naturally. Dr U tugs at our heart strings because the baby had no heartbeat and the woman got much sicker before recovering.
Dr U is trying to discredit pro-lifers, but telling a story with which everyone can identify and which Dr U uses to try to make the pro-life position look ridiculous. Dr U ends the story asking whom we would put in jail.
Having studied these three paragraphs carefully, the reader knows that Dr U did not perform anything, but catching the little one. Dr U tries to categorize what Dr U wanted to do and hoped we would assume happened as ABORTION. Since everyone would agree that it was the proper action and those awful pro-lifers would have put him and his patient in jail, then the position of the pro-lifers is an uninformed, unkind, unworkable: another example of their unacceptable approach to the issue.
Let's look at. If, indeed, Dr U had induced labor, would Dr U actually have performed an abortion? If so, we would see how foolish is our position vis à vis the doctor or patient.
Actually, if Dr U had induced labor, I would maintain it would not have been an abortion. It would have been an action whose sole purpose was to save the life of the mother, not to kill the baby. Give Dr U credit, while being happy to kill babies, Dr U's purpose here was to save the mother.
So, the doctor did nothing to cause the baby to be born early (except, perhaps, not to have tried to deal better with the lack of amniotic fluid). Apparently being hell-bent on making points (I do think Dr U writes well), Dr U imagines having performed an "abortion" which, even if Dr U had, would not have been an abortion.
Such is the other side; their arguments look so well-written and so persuasive. Close—or not even close—examination shows the hollowness and deceit of those arguments.