Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Today's back-alley abortions
In her excellent op-ed, "Dead wrong," attorney Denise Burke traces the abortion industry's fight against laws that would subject abortion clinics to the same health standards required of similar surgical clinics.
Abortion advocates will soon celebrate the anniversary of the infamous 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision, which abrogated states' rights regarding abortion, and they will claim that the ruling ended dangerous "back-alley" abortions. In fact, Roe simply spread back-alley abortions nationwide, as politicians curried favor with political supporters like Planned Parenthood by exempting abortion clinics from reasonable government health oversight.
I recall listening to Norma McCorvey--whose now-regretted allegations as Jane Roe in the Supreme Court's Roe v Wade decision provided pro-abortion attorneys with a false pretense for their case--as she testified at a U.S. Senate hearing in 1998 about her experience working in abortion clinics.
Ms. McCorvey testified, "I saw procedure rooms where sanitation and hygiene were after-thoughts. I worked with a doctor who operated on women while he was barefoot. I've worked in the clinics where drug use was rampant among clinic workers."
As a result of the erroneous facts and flawed ruling in Roe, abortion may be legal, but it is hardly rare or safe. Over a million abortions a year are performed in the U.S. in largely unregulated clinics that can hide unsanitary conditions, unqualified practitioners and predatory practices with vulnerable women. Witness Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell's butchery, where live babies were killed with concentration camp inhumanity and women suffered and died in a filthy facility described as "a bad gas station restroom."
Abortion advocates commonly contend that health and safety regulation would shut down their clinics. What does that tell you about the level of safety women encounter in abortion clinics? Such tacit admissions should spur legislators to action to protect women. Otherwise any abortion clinic, shrouded in secrecy and protected by special interest lobbies, remains a "back alley clinic."