Texas Politicians Use Gosnell Verdict to Remind You How Much They Want to Outlaw Abortion

Vagina demagogues.jpg
If there's one thing everyone in America can agree on this morning, it's that Kermit Gosnell is disgusting and belongs in an especially dank and fetid section of some sort of subterranean prison.

In a case that millions of talking heads have been shouting at you about from your TV, the Philadelphia doctor was convicted yesterday of first degree murder of three infants and involuntary manslaughter in the death of an adult patient.

Gosnell induced labor in women who were more than 24 weeks pregnant (illegal under Pennsylvania law), then snipped the spines of live infants. He was helped along by a staff that included zero licensed doctors or nurses, in a filthy fake clinic that also doubled as a "pill mill."

To hear some Texas politicians talk, though, Gosnell represents a "typical" abortion provider, and the experiences of the women and children who died on his table are appropriate fodder for a series of talking points about the evils of safe, legal abortion. Anti-abortion groups have jumped all over the Gosnell case, despite the fact that Gosnell was committing infanticide and murder, which literally everyone in the universe opposes (except, apparently, Kermit Gosnell). And almost no one has leapt onto the bandwagon with more gusto than your elected officials.

See also:
- Texas Conservatives Observe 40th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade With Ridiculous Press Releases
- Rick Perry Supports "Fetal Pain" Measure, Vows to Make Abortion a "Thing of the Past"

Irin Carmon over at Salon has already done an excellent job debunking the Fox News & Co. allegation that the libtard media "covered up" the Gosnell trial or refused to cover it. There's been a lot of discussion about why the many complaints against Gosnell's clinic were ignored by Pennsylvania state health officials for so long (hint: possibly because many of his patients had the misfortune of being poor, black and in the wrong part of town).

But now we get to embark on an even more irritating section of this debate, in which conservative politicians use Gosnell as a boogeyman to justify more and more stringent abortion bans (as will groups like Texas Right to Life, who are busily implying that Texas abortion clinics currently don't have to "meet ... minimum safety standards and health regulations.") Never mind the fact that 90 percent of abortions happen in the first 12 weeks, or that less than half of one percent of women experience a complication that requires hospitalization. Let's get right to the insane posturing, shall we?

In a statement issued yesterday, Governor Rick Perry said the Gosnell trial and verdict "shed light on a detestable and gruesome industry that takes the lives of hundreds of thousands of babies every year in communities across our nation." Further demonstrating his confusion about his job versus that of the Supreme Court, Perry added, "Those of us who believe in the sanctity of life will continue to fight for the day when abortion is nothing more than a sad footnote in American history."

Senator Ted Cruz, meanwhile, called the case a reminder of the "truly gruesome acts" of "late-term abortion." He also reiterated his opposition to "deliberate infanticide," which, just to reiterate, everyone is against. Everyone. Yes, really.

Representative Steve Stockman, in his ongoing bid to out-crazy Cruz, took things a mile or two further. "Democrats do not want abortion to be safe or rare," he said in a statement.. "Democrats oppose even the most basic of health and safety standards for abortion mills. Democrats don't care how many women are maimed, infected with diseases or die on the routinely filthy abortion mills. Democrats worship abortion with same fervor the Canaanites worshipped Molech." (Stockman's Twitter feed is, at this point, little more than an ongoing, spittle-flecked repetition of the words "Gosnell," "Benghazi" and "Obama," followed by millions of hashtags. The dude tweets more than a 14-year-old girl.)

And then there's Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, who tweeted, "Pray that ruling from #Gosnell trial ensures abortion laws are strengthened & such an unspeakable tragedy never happens again."

Just a reminder: This is what the people you elected are doing with their time. When they're not creating anti-Obama petitions or just straight up trolling liberals. It can be hard to tell the difference sometimes.

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45 comments
rbtxcat75
rbtxcat75

Many years ago we had a group of people that felt that it was ok to own slaves. We had a group also that thought there it was morally wrong. The group that thought it was ok, always fought it by saying it was “legal”. Those that fought against it said that it was morally wrong and that the slave was a person like you and me. So Anna (and her support system here), think about the fight you are really fighting. You are saying that you are outraged by what Gosnell did but it’s ok if we continue with late term abortions (Gosnell murdered babies at 24 weeks, Texas abortions are legal at 24 weeks). Don’t believe me, Google Southwestern Women’s Surgery Clinic off of Greenville and Royal. So what makes those folks that are against late term abortions such bad guys? You seem to poke fun at them all the time. Morality is not something that religious freaks cling to; it’s the fiber of our being and is the basis of why slavery is illegal.

lolotehe
lolotehe

Wow, this new star system sure makes it easier to skip the flame wars.

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

Just one more comparison, for argument's sake, on the similarities between the liberal stance on gun control and the conservative stance on abortion.  This time, to be fair, I'll take it from the ProChoice side of the argument. 2nd amendment advocates claim that an assault weapons ban or tighter controls on purchasing firearms would not have prevented Newtown, Aurora, or Columbine.  Their argument goes on to advocate enforcing the laws we have rather than finding new ways to punish or restrict lawful citizens from free exercise of their rights.  Well, lets turn it around.  Would an outright ban on abortion have prevented this monster from committing his atrocities?  He was already in violation of the law.  He probably would have run his 'mill' anyway were abortions banned, just found a way to escape what little scrutiny he seems to have faced as it is.  Is it fair to punish doctors who make their living performing LEGAL abortions, or women who seek LEGAL abortions, for the actions of a few criminals?

Edgar
Edgar

"But now we get to embark on an even more irritating section of this debate, in which conservative politicians use Gosnell as a boogeyman to justify more and more stringent abortion bans..."

Sorry, but that's just what we all do.  It goes both ways.  I know I've heard politicians use exonerees to argue for blanket prohibition of the death penalty.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

4/5 Vaginas mostly because Gosnell is such a freak and Im tired of the story and he should have his spine removed one vertebra at a time until his spine is gone.  I am enjoying this Phelps V Anna we've had going on in the vagina posts though

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Anti-choice extremists cannot pin the Gosnell monster to other abortion providers.  There is unanimous condemnation of that butcher on the pro-choice side:

"Vicki Saporta, president and CEO of the National Abortion Federation, described Gosnell as a 'rogue provider' and said that the organization - which had rejected his application for membership in 2010 after reviewing the appalling conditions in his clinic - had repeatedly condemned his practices."--- philly.com


Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Pennsylvania is not all that unlike Texas.  James Carville famously said of PA, "You have Philadelphia at one end, Pittsburgh at the other, and Alabama in the middle.

animas
animas

The problem here for those in love with growth of government such as Ms. Merlan et al is that the state and  local government as well as Pennslyvania dept of health, medical board etc "forgot" to follow their own regulations, follow up on inspections and enforce their own laws (for three to four decades).  The reasons for this are....?

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

"Further demonstrating his confusion about his job versus that of the Supreme Court, Perry added, "Those of us who believe in the sanctity of life will continue to fight for the day when abortion is nothing more than a sad footnote in American history."

Actually, it's compete and total understanding.  His job is to legislate (along with the legislature), not the SCOTUS.  When the people are unhappy with the interpretation the SCOTUS has made, then it is the politicians' jobs to amend the constitution.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

"or that less than half of one percent of women experience a complication that requires hospitalization"

In other words, around six thousand women a year.  About 15 a day have complications serious enough to require hospitalization.  Which is why Anna still doesn't want the abortion mills to have aisles wide enough to get a paramedic's gurney down, I one must assume.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

"Anti-abortion groups have jumped all over the Gosnell case, despite the fact that Gosnell was committing infanticide and murder, which literally everyone in the universe opposes (except, apparently, Kermit Gosnell)."

And Barack Obama, who voted against criminalizing it as a state Senator for Illinois.  (One of the few times he didn't vote Present, in fact.)

Also, a huge part of the Gosnell problem is that there are virtually no inspections or regulations going on at abortion mills, because people like Anna claim that it endangers women's rights.  It's the ONE place that the left side of the aisle decides that it wants to be libertarian on.  Oh, and they especially don't want to inspect the ones that mainly perform abortions on black women, like Gosnell did.

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

Interesting article.  Of course we expected the Republicans to handle this in a fashion that displays their complete lack of understanding the difference between an illegal act, which should be punished, and a legal act, which should be left alone.  Exactly as we expected the Democrats to demonstrate that very EXACT same lack of understanding when it comes to the difference between legal, law-abiding gun owners and criminal who use firearms.  I hope every liberal who defends legal, safe abortion in this case is also a staunch defender of the 2nd amendment rights of law-abiding citizens.  And vice versa.  This case, mixed with gun control is a perfect illustration of the stupidity rampant among republicans and democrats.

miss-ashly
miss-ashly

@rbtxcat75 Regulating the industry does not prevent doctors from performing illegal procedures if they are inclined. How many quack dentists do we hear about each year running businesses out of their homes?

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@RTGolden1 It's not, and it's why I don't support criminalization.  

However, if we are going to allow it, then it should at least include regular inspections, and actual medical oversight.  Gosnell had none, and he is NOT an outlier on this.  The policy in Pennsylvania was that abortion mills don't get inspected, because it would "interfere with women's rights."

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz If by that comment, the ever opinionated and inflammatory Carville meant, there's urban areas east and west with rural in the middle (in otherwords, a reflection of the United States itself), he'd be correct.  He, like you, mean it as an insult.  Imagine, hurling invectives at people you've never gone to meet, know nothing about, based on what you see in the news.  You'd have to be a rather small-minded individual to rationalize doing so.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@everlastingphelps OOPS lives in a bubble he shares with the rest of you right-wing lunatics.  If OOPS is such a believer in the sanctity of life, then why does he prevent a third of Texas' population to suffer without healthcare, and why does he want 30 million Texans running around shooting each other to death?

Chuck_Schick
Chuck_Schick

@RTGolden1 Agreed. It's too bad Congress listens to the "stupidly rampant" on either side of the aisle and not the rest of us.

rbtxcat75
rbtxcat75

Agreed. You are always going to have those that break the law. But if you regulate an industry that doesn’t really have any oversight to begin with and enforce very harsh punishment to those that do break the laws, then I think we have a first step. According to the Grand Jury testimony in the Gosnell case, “even nail salons are monitored more closely for client safety (than abortion clinics).” It goes on to say that there is a difference between how abortion clinics in PA are regulated compared to other medical facilities……….sound familiar? These are the same regulations that the author of this piece would have you believe that Texas should not enforce. And now we have the same instance in Houston…

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz being opinionated does not make one a nincompoop, he at least argues his point of view with decent background and conviction.  Right wrong or indifferent I appreciate what he brings to the comments.  Its the same with Anna, I may not always like or agree with what she says, but she has a point, drives it home and provides information that I can go read to educate myself even more.


Nincompoops write dumb shit to incite and bring nothing but hate and trolling to the board

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@everlastingphelpsPhiladelphia health department employees visited the clinic in response to a complaint that fetuses were being stored in paper bags in the employee fridge, noticed numerous violations, documented them, and did nothing.

The Department of State, which licenses individual physicians, also ignored the alarm bells. A decade ago, a former employee reported dangerous conditions at the clinic, but the department let it drop after interviewing Gosnell offsite.

 ----Grand Jury Report, 2011

roo_ster
roo_ster

@everlastingphelps Well, he might have killed fewer black babies and everyone knows that killing black babies is a good and saintly act.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@RTGolden1 Idiot.  Philly was always my second home, after Brooklyn.  I've been to all parts of that state.  Now apologize.

RTGolden1
RTGolden1 topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz @everlastingphelps It takes an amazing level of blind hypocrisy to stand in defense of legalized, safe abortion (which should be defended), yet stand opposed to the ownership of firearms by law-abiding individuals.  You supporting the government restricting the rights of law-abiding citizens to own firearms is no different than Perry trying to restrict the right of a woman to seek a legal abortion.  To be asinine about it, one could turn the gun-grabbers own mantra against them on this one and claim "if we save only one life by an outright ban on abortion, it's worth it."

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz @everlastingphelps I don't want people to suffer without healthcare.  I want everyone to be rich enough to pay for it themselves.

I don't want people running around shooting each other to death.  What I want is that someone wants to kill you, you try to kill them right back.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz @everlastingphelps No, they exist because the vast majority of doctors aren't sociopathic enough to perform abortion after abortion.  Even if they are willing to abide other doctors doing it, they aren't going to hold those snips and vacuum themselves.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@Anna_Merlan@everlastingphelpsDo you ever research these things before you slam in a talking point from a left-biased press-release-regurgiator?

http://www.factcheck.org/2008/08/obama-and-infanticide/

From one of CNN's own cites, no less.  He opposed the bills.  The language he claims was missing that prevented him from voting for it was, in fact, IN the legislation.  Obama, frankly, is lying.  He voted against criminalizing the very acts Gosnell was convicted of.

Not even sure why you wanted to jump into this hole, but, by all means, keep digging.


rbtxcat75
rbtxcat75

So can the same be said for gun regulation? If there are only a few people that are abusing the law and will commit a crime either way, then why do we need to work on the current regulations? Based on your point, we should stop regulating the gun industry because harsher gun laws will do nothing to prevent tragedies like Sandy Hook or Aurora.

miss-ashly
miss-ashly

@rbtxcat75 I haven't yet heard of the clinic in Houston hiring teenagers to administer anesthesia to patients... While the clinic in Houston *may* have performed illegal late-term abortions (that has not yet been confirmed), Gosnell's clinic was a horror show that MANY people knew to be operating well outside the bounds of law or medicine and felt no need to report or when they did, the oversight committees/insurance/state failed to properly follow-up - likely because Gosnell's patients were low income and of color. If the clinic in Houston is found to be guilty of the charges, throw the book, but I hesitate to advocate for more regulations simply because 1 or 2 men acted outside of the law. I stress again, that oversight or more regulations (that prevent or hinder women from obtaining medical care/treatment/procedures) will not prevent that. 

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz @everlastingphelps In plain English:

By 2009, Gosnell was so well-known to other clinics for performing illegal abortions (aka Murder 1) that clinics that didn't have the stomach for it sent women who couldn't legally get abortions there.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@everlastingphelps Gosnell’s clinic had such a bad reputation by 2009 that it began to cater to women who couldn’t get abortions anywhere else because their pregnancies were too far advanced.

Anna_Merlan
Anna_Merlan

@everlastingphelps You're right. Talking to you is a lot like falling in a hole. But real quick: can we get a Phelps ruling on news sources that are not "left-biased"? Are there any? 

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