Wednesday, June 08, 2005

The Consequences of Roe v. Wade

From a post at Right Reason by Francis Beckwith (paragraph break and emphasis added by me):
A 1997 article in The New Republic, a magazine whose editorial position is generally supportive of abortion-choice, cites the work of Ruth Padawer, a staff writer for the local Bergen County, New Jersey, newspaper, The Record: "she called local clinics, asked how many [partial-birth abortions] they performed, did some math and wrote up her conclusions: `Interviews with physicians who use the method reveal that in New Jersey alone, at least 1,500 partial-birth abortions are performed each year, three times the supposed national rate. Moreover, doctors say only a minuscule amount are for medical reasons.'" (William Powers, "Partial Truths," The New Republic [March 24, 1997]: 19)

Dr. Hakell's practice and Ms. Padawer's story were confirmed by a stunning confession by Ron Fitzsimmons, then-executive director of the National Coalition of Abortion Providers. Since 1995, when the debate over partial-birth abortion began, Fitzsimmons and his abortion-choice colleagues had claimed that partial-birth abortion was extremely rare (about 450 per year) and performed only in late-term pregnancy for serious reasons such as severe fetal deformity and to save the life of the mother. In 1997, Fitzsimmons, on an episode of ABC News' "Nightline" admitted, in an answer to Ted Koppel's question, "[W]hat were you lying through you teeth about?,": "When I said that the procedures were performed only in about 450 cases and only in those severe circumstances. That was not accurate. But we have no apologies for this procedure." (Ibid) According to The New Republic's account, "Fitzsimmons tried, several times, to tell Koppel that, in fact, 3,000 to 5,000 partial-birth abortions were performed every year on fetuses twenty weeks or older; and, of course, only 500 to 750 were performed for reasons of maternal health in the third trimester." (Ibid) Fitzsimmons told the New York Times that "in the vast majority of cases, the procedure is performed on a healthy mother with a healthy fetus that is 20 weeks or more along" and is "performed far more often than his colleagues have acknowledged." (David Stout, "An Abortion Rights Advocate Says He Lied About Procedure," New York Times [February 26, 1997]: A11)
A perfect illustration of the slippery slope down which Roe v. Wade has led us. For more about the dangers of state-sponsored eugenics, read this and follow the links.