Here are some links you should visit:
Pundit and Pundette has a listing of links to catch you up on what happened if you haven't been made aware of it already, and a reminder that today is a Day of prayer and penance.
Michelle Malkin explains How mass murder got a pass and there are disturbing photos there that while hard to look at, are important because it drives home just how demented Gosnell and the people who assisted him along with those who looked the other way in the face of his crimes really are.
The Grand Jury report is graphic, nightmarish and horrible, but if you can stand to read it, you should. I've read excerpts and am fully traumatized, I cannot bring myself to read the whole thing, but you can find it HERE.
Jill Pundette has a post at Potluck about this that you should see, and join in the conversation in comments there: Infanticide in America
Over and over today I have seen many of my favorite bloggers refer to a piece by the Anchoress as the best article on this subject, since the horror is on such a large scale that it is difficult for most of us to think about much less write about, we are thankful that she rose to the task and wrote: Abortion, Language and Looking Away
Moe Lane has a post about how the story the media is trying to bury or whitewash backs up pretty much everything that the pro-life people have been saying for years in: #rsrh What pro-choicers need to grok.
Jill at Pundit and Pundette has a post today that will absolutely break your heart, but I implore you to read it: The brief, painful lives of Baby Boy A, Baby C, and Baby X
Now you know some about the babies, but what about the other victims? The girls and women who often showed up at this clinic and many others under duress, having been forced or coerced into having an abortion, either by their parents, their boyfriends/husbands, or even the clinic personnel themselves who will lie about what the procedure entails and neglect to give the girls honest information about the aftermath - the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual trauma that can (and often does) haunt these girls and women for years, sometimes for the rest of their lives.
The providers themselves are well aware that these young women are often there not by any choice of their own but at someone else's choosing. At Right Klik there's a piece about how Gosnell acknowledged that he was perfroming forced abortions, because he noted it on slips for patients to sign so he could charge extra to more heavily sedate those who were there against their will to supposedly make it less traumatic for them. Read The Price of a Forced Abortion to learn more. EXCERPT:
More on Gosnell's forced abortions via What's Wrong With the World:Kermit Gosnell was explicitly in the business of providing forced abortions. This fact is made abundantly clear by Gosnell's schedule of fees for anesthesia. In addition to the fee for the procedure itself (up to $2,500 or more), victims were encouraged to pay extra for dangerous doses of anesthetic agents, particularly in cases in which the "patients" were being subjected to coercion:An “Anesthesia for Surgery” form [Appendix B] presented to patients for their signature – and payment – did not identify or describe the drugs to be administered.
However, it suggested:
It will probably be best to pay the extra money and be more comfortable if some of the following conditions are true for you.
1. The decision to have the procedure is a difficult decision.2. Medication is usually necessary for your menstrual cramps.3. Your decision has been forced by your parents or partner.4. Your family members or friends “don’t like pain.”
One other fact to which my attention was called by a correspondent: Gosnell was overtly performing forced abortions and was doing so with so little worry about legal repercussions that he expressly included a line in the paperwork that advised women regarding sedation that they should pay extra for more "comfort" sedation if they were being forced to have the abortion! (p. 55) At first when I heard this I thought Gosnell must have been crazy, as this involved leaving an explicit paper trail of his own practice of forced abortion. After reading section VI of the report, however, I realize that he knew full-well he had nothing to worry about. He was not being called to account. He had plenty of inductive evidence that all such things would be overlooked. Only when law enforcement finally got involved was DOH's hand forced, and then they acted none too willingly and complained in e-mails that they were "used." (p. 152) Even now, Gosnell hasn't been charged with carrying out forced abortions, though I assume that is illegal under PA law. He's been charged with plenty of other things, and I'm not blaming the Grand Jury. My guess is that until they have a specific case of a forced abortion to charge him with, they can't charge him. So he was perfectly safe putting that line in his paperwork.Here are some quick facts about coerced abortions from Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life:
Now, I have repeatedly said that pro-aborts turn the other way when there is evidence that even by their own lights women are being harmed, coerced, etc., by abortion. I call this the "choice devours itself" phenomenon. Pro-aborts start out defending abortion ostensibly for the woman's sake and end up not really caring tuppence even about the woman and even about her choice.
In this case, the direct evidence of coercion only came out after the evidence of everything else--the murders of born-alive infants, the gross malpractice that killed women, the multiple, egregious violations of health regulations--had already come to light. But if the bureaucrats had cared tuppence about women's health and well-being, they would have shut down the clinic long before, at which point presumably Gosnell's forced abortion practices would also have come to light and been stopped.
But they didn't really care. The most sickeningly believable aspect of the entire report comes in the statement that the only thing the DOH consistently tried to make Gosnell do was to file paperwork--in particular his (made up) reports of number of abortions that they needed to fill out their own required paperwork reporting on aggregate abortion numbers. (p. 171) So the machine of death ground on.
Some more information about coercion and abortion, from Abortion is the Unchoice:Coercion facts:
- 64 percent of abortions involve some sort of coercion.
- 45 percent of men interviewed at abortion clinics recalled urging abortion, including 37 percent of married men.
- Teens are at higher risk for becoming victims of coerced abortion.According to researcher David Reardon, women give these reasons, among others, for undergoing abortion:
- Forced by their mother, father, husband or boyfriend
- Lack of support from social network
- Persuaded / pressured by abortion center
Coercion comes in many forms, often from all sides, whether from an abusive partner, family or authority figure; a failed support network, deceptive experts or others in positions of influence or power.
It can escalate to violence, forced abortion or even homicide -- the #1 killer of pregnant women.
Lost in the politics and rhetoric is the surprising, seldom-reported evidence that MOST, not some, abortions are unwanted or coerced. Many are deceptively informed or even forced. Coercion can escalate to violence. The threats are real. Homicide is the #1 killer of pregnant women.
Coercion can involve professional negligence, deceptive counseling or false information presented by licensed professionals or trusted authorities as fact. It may involve job or housing discrimination, such as the threat of being fired or evicted for refusing to abort.
Also from the above link at Unchoice, this paragraph is particularly important:One mother was turned away from a homeless shelter unless she would have an abortion. In other cases, it is an abuser who seeks abortion to cover up his crimes or parents who force their daughters to abort. Published research exposes the synergy of coercion that is, for many, just the tip of the iceberg:
"There were about 100 women in the waiting room and no one was talking."
"We were herded like cattle.""I had so many questions. The doctor told me to be quiet.""Every Tuesday a scheduled bus took students to the clinic. It was all so organized.""The school counselor said, 'One day you'll back on this and laugh."
* 52% felt rushed, 54% uncertain,* 64% feel pressured to abort, yet* 67% had NO counseling beforehand,* 79% were not told of available alternatives1* 84% were not given enough information to make an informed choice.1* Coercion can escalate to violence (see Forced Abortion in America report)
"My sister was crying as she entered the clinic, she cried throughout the procedure, and she was crying as she left. Three children are growing up without their Mom because nobody wanted to ask questions." - sister of post-abortion suicide victim
"She typed her last words on a synthesizer: 'Get in touch with my Dad. Tell him I love him." - Susanne, was paralyzed by and eventually died from abortion complications
"Many, many girls and women have wound up in the emergency room of hospitals bleeding uncontrollably or deathly sick from infection because the doctors botched their abortions. Many, many of these girls and women have had to undergo hysterectomies. Quite a number have died.: - Kevin Sherlock in The Scarlet Survey
* 65% suffer symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome* 31% suffered health complications, some of which are life-threatening* 65% higher risk of clinical depression* Death rates from all causes are 4.5 times higher* Suicide rates are 6 times higher
Women have been subjected to unthinkable abuses, torture and even death for resisting abortion. Homicide is the leading killer of pregnant women. Women and others hurt by abortion are often at a loss for words to describe the experience. Words that do come up often are "silenced," "nightmare," "humiliating," "degraded," "dismissed," "herded like cattle," "part of me died," and, ironically, "I was never given a choice."Funny how it's called 'pro-choice', when often, the 'choice' to have an abortion is not being made by the person who has to go through with it. Here are some links about the devastating after effects of abortions:
New Study Affirms Link Between Abortions and Subsequent Mental Health Problems
Later Abortions More Likely to be Unwanted, Are Linked to Psychological Problems
Research Finds Poor Counseling Predicts Post-Abortion Psychological Problems
The story linked below is about a young mother who was LIED TO in order to convince her to have an abortion, which killed her:
Two Senseless Deaths: The Long Road to Recovery
An uninformed 'choice' is really no choice at all.
Studies show that the human brain is not fully developed until about 25 years of age. Particularly immature is the part of the brain that helps a person understand risks and consequences. A teenage or young adult female doesn't have the mental capacity to be fully cognizant of the ramifications of what she's done or is about to do and when she finds herself in a bad situation and is not presented with honest facts, she's not likely to make a wise decision and can be more suggestible to actions that have grave consequences. At some point though, when the power of denial wears off, the full weight of what she has done will hit her, and she may find her very soul damaged as she is burdened with such shame that she cannot talk about it, nor can she seek refuge from in her religion - especially if she was raised in one in which abortion is simply the very worst thing ever and the greatest sin of all. She will feel denied even of God's forgiveness and the spiritual void can be devastating. Christians are told all our lives that we can take refuge in the Lord, and that our sins can be forgiven, but there is a very real sense that this one particular sin is unforgivable. Now you've got a young girl who was coerced into doing something that she may not have otherwise had done if she'd only known the truth about it, and she now can't even find solace in the one place where sinners can be healed.
What can she do? The 'pro-choice' folks are no help, they already got what they wanted (money & another abortion) and have no use for an example of the harm done in abortion's aftermath. She isn't going to feel comfortable going to the pro-life people, they'll call her a murderer. She's gonna have to keep it to herself. Maybe drugs or alcohol can numb the pain, she'll feel as if there's nowhere else to turn and nothing to lose. Self esteem? Nope. Self respect? How can there be any, knowing what she knows? This can lead to more reckless behavior that may net her a disease, or even get her killed, maybe she'll get pregnant again - a vicious cycle can ensue. Perhaps she can weather the storm and move on as best she can, secret intact, heartbreak concealed. Maybe one day she meets someone nice and falls in love, maybe now she's ready to have a child, only to discover that she was rendered infertile. Seems to me that the unborn child at the beginning of this hypothetical tale isn't the only life destroyed by a culture and industry of death.
I have had people tell me that while they don't really approve of abortion, they want the 'choice' to be available, but what kind of choice is it if the facts of the very real consequences to follow afterward are not given before hand? Omission of pertinent details that might dissuade a person from doing what you want them to do is another form of coercion.
Now I don't think making abortion illegal would help much, because I don't think it's likely to happen and I think abortions would still occur illegally, but I do think that if girls and women were better informed about the true nature of what abortion really entails - the medical and biological facts, not politically correct euphemisms - before hand, perhaps even before they became sexually active, there would probably be a lot less abortions and a lot less damaged females.
I didn't used to be pro-life, and the people shoving fetus pictures in girls' faces and screaming at them outside of places creeped me out, (I don't think abusing an already troubled person is helpful) but learning the truth about it has changed my mind. I now know that abortion is an act of violence not just against the baby but his or her mother as well. I think the best thing pro-life folks and really anyone who genuinely cares about women and girls can do is to be compassionate and willing to calmly help educate people - about the risks & consequences that accompany abortion and about the alternatives that are available. If more people knew that they don't have to face a 'surprise' pregnancy alone, there would be a marked decline in the abortion industry. Also, if more girls were better informed about what really happens at those clinics and how it can mess a person up forever, they might be more reluctant to engage in risky sexual behavior in the first place.
We really need to have some honest discussions in this country about this, away from the political rhetoric, and let young people become truly informed before they make decisions that will effect the rest of their lives.
This post is listed as a recommended read at Pundit & Pundette. Thanks, P&P!
Linked at the Conservative Hideout, thanks, Matt!
This post is recommended by The American Spectator!
This post is linked at Invincible Armor, thank you, mRed!