Hard cases make bad laws.
This is an axiom that probably goes, in one form or another, back to Hammurabi’s Code. It is true. When you come up with a particularly horrible case that you attempt to accommodate you end up creating very bad law. That is what the pro-aborts are up to today. They are reeling under the impact of the the CMP videos which is proving what we already suspected, that the abortion industry is focused on maximizing abortions, on maximizing the income from those abortions, and they are more than willing to kill babies, even those who are born alive because of malfeasance, and women if that is what it takes for them to prosper.
There are two standard cases the pro-aborts use to make themselves appear noble and pro-live people uncaring and callous. Everyone is familiar with the first case: rape and incest. No one wants a woman who has been the victim of unwilling incest or of rape to have a child. On the other hand, society has ruled, via the Supreme Court, that neither rape nor incest are capital cases. Why is it then that we agree to kill the innocent product of those crimes while the criminal could very well walk free or get off with probation. When pro-life people propose a trade, “okay, I’ll give you rape and incest if you give me the rest” you hear crickets. Or if you say any rape/incest exception has to be accompanied by a police report/arrest report/indictment of a perpetrator you have the spectacle of GOP women in Congress going nuts at the idea. This shows that this is not a serious objection but rather an attempt to dishonestly portray pro-lifers and goons of some type.
The second standard case is featured in today’s Washington Post, Why I had an abortion after 20 weeks.
If such a ban had been in place a year ago, I would have been condemned to carry and give birth to a baby who had no chance at life.
I have been happily married for more than a decade, and I have two beautiful children. When my husband and I found out last year that I was pregnant again, we were overjoyed.
At 20 weeks, my husband and I went for our favorite prenatal visit: the detailed ultrasound anatomy scan that shows your baby’s heart, kidneys, bladder, stomach, spine and brain and whether you’re having a girl or a boy. I could barely contain myself as I sat on the exam table, eager to meet our baby more intimately. My husband and I chit-chatted with the ultrasound technician, gabbing and laughing when we recognized familiar features on the ultrasound images.But after five minutes, only my husband and I were talking. The technician had grown quiet. She just kept printing picture after picture and pressing the wand deeper into the gel on my stomach.
My husband and I reached for each other’s hands. We asked the technician if everything was all right, and she said we should wait for a doctor to talk to us. When the OB/GYN entered, I remember asking point-blank, “Is there a chance our child will be okay?” He responded kindly, softly and unequivocally: “No.”
Over the next week came referrals to high-risk pregnancy specialists and more, longer, in-depth ultrasounds. In our baby’s brain cavity, where gray matter should have been visible, there was only black. The diagnosis was the same from every doctor: Something — we would learn it was not genetic or chromosomal — had caused two leaks in our baby’s brain, one on each side, destroying it almost entirely.
This is tragic. My wife suffered an early term miscarriage and I can testify to the effect on her. I can’t imagine what it would be like to carry a child for over five months and then discover a fatal deformity. This is truly the axiomatic ‘hard case.’
Abortion data are hard to come by. The CDC produces, annually, an Abortion Surveillance report that lags the calendar year by 3 years. However, only 39 states report abortion data and one of those states is California. So to say the data is incomplete is charitable. The pro-abort Guttmacher Institute (funny how the name sounds German, I’m sure it is a coincidence) does some data collection. Guttmacher says 1.2% of abortions are performed after 20 weeks. The CDC gives the number as 1.4%. What does that mean in terms of numbers? CDC had 730,322 abortions reported to it but we know that only includes 39 states. Guttmacher estimates the total number of abortions at about 1.02 million. Not an unreasonable guess. This comes to 14,280 late term abortions. That is the equivalent of a reinforced infantry division.
The op-ed can’t stop with feelings, she has to fall back on the old pro-abort standby: the big freakin lie.
According to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, just more than 1 percent of abortions take place at week 21 or later, many because of devastating medical situations like ours. Each of these mothers must battle through her own hell to decide on and find the medical care she needs, gather her friends and family to lean on, and grieve.
When you look at the available scholarly literature, you find that fetal anomaly is so rare a reason for abortion, regardless of term, that it doesn’t register in surveys. For instance, a paper in the very pro-abort journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health titled Who Seeks Abortions at or After 20 Weeks? opines:
This characterization, however, is not informed by empirical data on women seeking later abortions. The body of research on women who have dealt with fetal anomalies or life endangerment during pregnancy describes their stories as narratives of pregnancy wantedness and tragic circumstances.[18-20] We do not know how accurately these narratives characterize the circumstances of women who seek later abortions for reasons other than fetal anomaly or life endangerment. But data suggest that most women seeking later terminations are not doing so for reasons of fetal anomaly or life endangerment.[5, 21]
The Guttmacher Institute in their publication Reasons U.S. Women Have Abortions: Quantitative and Qualitative Perspectives finds that 12% of women having abortions expressed concern about fetal health as a reason for abortion but his was not based on any diagnostic evidence:
A woman’s concerns for her health or possible fetal health problems were cited as reasons to end her pregnancy by one-fourth of the qualitative sample. Women who felt that their fetus’s health had been compromised cited concerns such as a lack of prenatal care, the risk of birth defects due to advanced maternal age, a history of miscarriages, maternal cocaine use and fetal exposure to prescription medications.
In this respect this argument is indistinguishable from the rape/incest argument. You take a horrible set of facts that is actually very rare and try to claim that those facts are the norm and demand that any law recognize that fiction as fact.
Actually, late term abortion for fetal anomaly is exceedingly rare. This should be obvious. There are a plethora of diagnostic tools available to detect those fatal anomalies that can’t be corrected via surgical intervention.
How about this deal: if I give you all the babies who will be born dead to abort, will you give me the rest?
The author had already carried this child for over 20 weeks. Suppose an affidavit was signed by the woman’s doctor, accompanied by the medical evidence and imagery, and it went before a local judge on an expedited basis. Suppose that the medical examiner had to review the request and ensure they comported with the fetal remains. Suppose legal jeopardy attached to submitting bogus documentation (the woman would want that, right?). What harm arises?
But we all know what the answer is. No! Choice! Patriarchy! Trust Women!
This article is sheer agitprop. The author’s case was a tragedy but her particular case does not represent the facts in the near total majority of other cases of late term abortion. Should the emotional distress caused her carrying a child that was going to be born dead outweigh the cost of killing 14,000 children on a whim? And other couples, perhaps less selfish or more emotionally stable than this writer, have accepted the burden of carrying a fatally deformed child to full term.