Both sides in abortion debate highlight Gosnell verdict
May 13th, 2013
04:12 PM ET
12 months ago

Both sides in abortion debate highlight Gosnell verdict

(CNN) – Groups who support and oppose abortion rights highlighted Monday's guilty verdicts in the trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted on three counts of first-degree murder.

Gosnell, an abortion provider, was accused of killing babies by using scissors to cut their spinal cords. Authorities alleged that some of the infants were born alive and viable during the sixth, seventh and eighth months of pregnancy.

Anti-abortion groups said the ruling underscored a blight of immoral procedures taking place at facilities providing abortions around the nation, but groups supporting abortion rights countered the details of the Gosnell case would become more widespread should abortion be prohibited.

"The Gosnell case serves to highlight two major problems with the abortion industry in this country – its callous disregard for the health and safety of women and the inhumanity of abortion, especially late-term abortion," said Anna Higgins, the director of the Center for Human Dignity at the conservative Family Research Council.

"The lack of concern for both unborn babies and babies that survive an abortion is not an attitude isolated to Kermit Gosnell," Higgins continued. "More recent reports show other abortionists have no respect for human life and are willing to kill babies very late-term or even let babies who are born alive die."

The notion that Gosnell represents a broader force of unscrupulous abortion providers was echoed Monday by Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the Susan B. Anthony List, a major anti-abortion advocacy group.

"The greatest tragedy is that Kermit Gosnell is not alone," Dannenfelser said. "Exploitation of women and complete disregard for their health and well-being are problems endemic to the entire abortion industry."

A different take was offered by groups who support abortion rights.

"Justice was served to Kermit Gosnell today and he will pay the price for the atrocities he committed," said Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America. "We hope that the lessons of the trial do not fade with the verdict. Anti-choice politicians, and their unrelenting efforts to deny women access to safe and legal abortion care, will only drive more women to back-alley butchers like Kermit Gosnell."

"Until we reject the politicization of women's medical care and leave these decisions where they belong – between a woman and her family and her doctor – women will never be safe," Hogue continued.


Filed under: Abortion
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Beth

    "Until we reject the politicization of women's medical care and leave these decisions where they belong – between a woman and her family and her doctor – women will never be safe," Hogue continued.- Right, the fewer who know about the death of the child, the better.... that's how Gosnell went on so long.... we understand your logic now.

    HERE'S SOME TRUTH for HOGUE that no one can deny - ***Share***
    “Many Americans are not aware that today the US stands with only 3 other countries for having the most radical abortion policies in the WORLD– China, North Korea, and Canada” Dr. Charmaine Yoest – President & CEO, Americans United for Life

    Kirsten Powers – "Even liberal Europe gets this. In France, Germany, Italy, and Norway, abortion is illegal after 12 weeks. In addition to the life-of-mother exception, they provide narrow health exceptions that require approval from multiple doctors or in some cases going before a board. In the U.S., if you suggest such stringent regulation and oversight of later-term abortions, you are tarred within seconds by the abortion rights movement as a misogynist who doesn’t “trust women.”

    May 13, 2013 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  2. Sniffit

    "This is no back alley abortion; Ms. Hogue, don't falsify the facts."

    Wow. Analogy comprehension fail. She didn't say it was. It was a licensed practitioner operating in violation of all the regulations and standards of medical care. Point is though, if abortion is made widely illegal or unavailable from professionals who do obey the rules and do perform in strict compliance with medical standards, which is by far and wide the normal situation, then women will be forced to once again retreat to obtaining abortions from people like Gosnell because there will be no standards of care, of cleanliness, etc. You're either super dense not to understand the point she was making or you were just being obtuse on purpose.

    May 13, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  3. mickinmd

    Up to the 1970's, the Southern Baptist and Evangelical views were that abortion was permitted according to both the Bible and Ethics. Then the hardliners began to hold sway. No one of any moral fiber would condone late-term abortions. There should be a time limit at which point the brain is clearly not developed enough to realize the world around him/her.

    May 13, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    At Boo..... Are we so responsible that we can legally stop a women from aborting our child.

    May 13, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  5. cog in the wheel

    In my view, the abortion debate should center around limiting late-term abortions. I personally support a women's right to choose through the first trimester; 3 months is long enough for a woman to determine if she wants to be a biological mother. Within the first three months the fetus is so undeveloped it can't possibly survive on it's own. I am adamantly opposed to the idea that, from the very moment of conception, the rights of a fetus supersedes a woman's right to choose.

    What I don't support are abortions beyond the first trimester–excepting those cases when the unborn child has some irreparable defect, i.e. missing a brain, or a spine, or some other life-ending condition.

    May 13, 2013 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    "Ilyse Hogue (NARAL) implies that Gosnell is more to be lauded than scorned. Sort of like saying that, if it weren't for the Jews, there wouldn't be a need for Mengele or the Wannsee Conference."

    That's a gross misrepresentation of what she said AND yet another proof of Godwin's Law. You guys just can't help trying to retreat to the Hitler/Nazi stuff, eh?

    May 13, 2013 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
1 2