Anna Higgins

The horrors that have been revealed by witnesses in the murder trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell are almost unspeakable. It appears the disgusting conditions found at his facility were just the tip of the iceberg. As we hear further testimony, we have discovered that babies born alive were routinely killed with scissors. One worker testified that she heard a baby scream as it was killed and another worker said she witnessed a baby “jump” when it was stabbed with scissors. Just as disturbing is the fact that these gruesome deaths could have been prevented had this abortion facility been inspected by the state of Pennsylvania. Despite numerous complaints, it is reported that Gosnell’s house of horrors remained uninspected since 1993. According to the Grand Jury Report, the political powers that be in Pennsylvania decided that inspections should be avoided because they would pose a “barrier to women.” These facts together are so appalling that they should disturb any human being on the most visceral level, no matter his political affiliation.

In the midst of the Gosnell trial, another shocking infanticide story broke. Alisa LaPolt Snow, lobbyist for the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, testified in opposition to a bill that would require life-saving treatment for infants born alive following a failed abortion. She complained that such born alive infant protection acts “insert politics where it doesn’t belong.” Administering life-saving treatment to a live infant interferes with “a woman’s ability to make her own personal, medical decisions.” It is hard to imagine a policy that could be less political than saving the life of a struggling infant who is alive outside the womb. Legislators were shocked by these statements, as well they should have been.

The response of Americans to these horrific stories of infanticide has also been shock and outrage. Until last week, however, there was almost no way to gauge the opinion of the public because the mainstream media had remained virtually silent, largely refusing to cover these stories. Thanks to grassroots efforts from astute citizens, concerned non-profit groups, and a few courageous congressmen, the media seem to have gotten the message that silence in the face of such important human rights events is unacceptable.

Anna Higgins

Anna Higgins, J.D., is director of the Center for Human Dignity at the Family Research Council in Washington, D.C.