Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Planned Parenthood: Committing an Abortion is Like Swimming

[Today's guest post by Sarah Terzo of is part of our paid blogging program.]

During my research on Planned Parenthood I stumbled across a quote from a Planned Parenthood clinic director that I’d like to share. It is from an old article (Sandra G. Boodman, “The Dearth of Abortion Doctors; Stigma, Low Pay and Lack of Personal Commitment Erode Ranks” The Washington Post, April 20, 1993), but the quote is so revealing of PP’s attitude towards abortion that I thought it deserved a mention.

Irving S. Rust, director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in the South Bronx, was asked about the declining number of doctors doing abortions. His response was that abortions are "boring" to perform, and that is why many doctors won't do it. It's an argument I have seldom encountered. A first trimester abortion is "like swimming," he said. "It can be sort of boring and kind of monotonous, but unless you're good at it, you can wind up with some major complications."

It is amazing how many incriminating quotes by Planned Parenthood one can find when digging through news archives. It is disturbing (but not surprising) that a Planned Parenthood director viewed killing unborn babies so casually. Planned Parenthood campaigns to allow non-physicians to perform abortions and opposes even modest safety regulations for abortion clinics. But these candid words from a Planned Parenthood director reveal that they are well aware of the dangers of abortion, especially when done by people without much experience. They know that even first trimester abortions can be dangerous to women, contradicting their public position that abortions are safe because they are legal.

The comparison to swimming is particularly callous. Does Planned Parenthood believe that an abortion is no more morally significant than a swim in the pool? It's stunning how lightly the largest abortion provider in the United States views killing unborn children. Even midway through the first trimester, the baby is very well developed. By 7-8 weeks after conception, the child has arms and legs with fingers and toes. He or she has a beating heart at 21 days. Jewels Green, who worked in a clinic that performed abortions in the first trimester only, nevertheless testified to sorting through recognizable body parts. (If you have a strong stomach, see for yourself what an aborted baby at 8 weeks looks like.)

Since 1993, the number of doctors committing abortions has declined even further. Abortion advocates are getting nervous:
[T]he number of state-based restrictions on abortions has increased significantly over the last two years. Defining a “scarcity” of abortion providers to mean a state where either 60 percent of the women live in a county without an abortion provider, or where there are 200,000 or more people for each abortion provider, we found that fully 32 states were experiencing scarcity as of 2008, the last year for which these data are available. 
The number of abortion facilities in the United States continues to decline rapidly, with 87 closures in 2013 alone. May the trend continue in 2014 and beyond!


Drew Hymer said...

i think you're being a bit unfair about the baby-killer's comment. He wasn't really comparing the murders to swimming. He was talking about the challenge of baby-killing. It's not at all challenging. And he's right about that. The victim is a sitting duck.

ockraz said...

A lot of PP quotes illustrate that their leadership is not where most people are in terms of their views about abortion. I think most PCers and all PLers see the problem as two rights in conflict and argue about how to weigh the one versus the other. One side thinks the difference between the nature of the rights is the deciding factor and the other that it's the difference between the nature of whose rights are involved.

The people I know who work for PP reject that paradigm altogether and think that there's just a woman's right to bodily autonomy and nothing to balance it against.

How else do you explain remarks like when Rep. Woolsey compared abortion to having a tonsillectomy?

Drew Hymer said...

i've never been hunting so i'll take your word for it. Ducks have a chance of escape because they're not constrained in a small area and they can move pretty fast. Unborn babies aren't so fortunate.

Sr.Athens said...

Planned Parenthood director viewed killing unborn babies so casually. God have mercy!