The Sticky Case of Live Birth Abortion

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Very little national attention is being given to the happenings at the Women’s Medical Society clinic in West Philadelphia run by Dr. Kermit Gosnell.  Prosecutors are now calling the “live birth abortions” that occurred their “routine procedure.”

The term “live birth abortion” is an interesting mixture of words.  By definition, an abortion is the ending of a pregnancy by ending the viability of a fetus.  Christians have argued for decades that abortion is murder because the “fetus” is in reality a human life.  And so to end a human life is murder.  Proponents of abortion shirk at the label of murder being applied to the abortive procedure.  They use terms such as tissue, potential life, etc. to ease the conscience and to bolster their argument.

Christians have also argued that abortion, in general, cheapens society’s overall view of human life.  And so the killings (and that is what they are) at the Women’s Medical Society clinic seem to be a natural outcome that was predicted.

If babies at a local church nursery were smothered in their cribs on a Sunday morning, the outcry would be tremendous and the media coverage would be consuming.  And rightfully so.  And so it is appropriate to ask: What is the difference in that horrific scenario and the “routine procedure” being performed in West Philly where live babies, the products of failed abortions, are killed by having their spines cut?  Besides dismemberment and beheading being outrageously graphic ways to kill a human as opposed to smothering with a pillow, the difference is this:  Babies in a church nursery are wanted and babies that are the products of failed abortions are not wanted.

So is that now the standard for life?  Life that is wanted is sacred and life that is unwanted is tomorrow’s garbage?  Thankfully in Philadelphia the District Attorney is calling it murder.  But this now presses abortion proponents in ways that make them very uncomfortable.  Just a week ago in Florida, Planned Parenthood representative Alisa LaPolt Snow became very unsettled when asked what should be done with babies that are the product of botched abortions.  She warily admitted that she believed the decision should be left to the patient and her doctor.  The patient being the mother and NOT the live baby lying on the abortion table.  When asked directly if the “patient would be the child struggling on the table,” Snow replied, “I really don’t know the answer to that.”

Some things in life fit into the category we call “common sense.” When a baby is newly born and struggling for their life on a doctor’s table, common sense says that we should step in and save and preserve that little life.  Common sense in Philadelphia has kicked in and the city prosecutor is calling the events in Dr. Kermit’s clinic murder because that is what they were.  And common sense pushes us to also consider whether abortion in general is also murder.  Christians have been saying it is for many, many years.  This argument flows not just from theology but also from common sense.

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