Darlene Haynes was only 23 years old when another woman brutally slashed her open and removed her 8-month-old baby girl from her womb. Her decomposing body was found on July 27, wrapped in a blanket and dumped in a closet inside her apartment in Worcester, Mass. The body was so mutilated that when they found it, the police said they couldn't immediately determine its gender.
The suspected murderer, 35-year-old Julie Corey, lived in the same apartment building and was found soon after the crime in Plymouth, N.J., claiming the baby was her own.
This heart-rending story is also notorious for how the "pro-choice" media sputter and struggle to deny the humanity of a baby, even as the child is slashed away and stolen by a psychopath. I would highly doubt Corey said to bewildered onlookers, "Look at my new fetus."
And yet journalists insult this motherless baby as merely a "fetus," this their dismissive blob-of-tissue word suggesting an unborn baby is subhuman until birth, no matter how many months along in the pregnancy, and no matter how physically able it is to survive outside the womb. The word "fetus" isn't even synonymous with human, since dictionaries define it as describing any "developing mammal or other viviparous vertebrate."
A blog called Verum Serum collected some headlines from media sites on the Internet as the story broke on July 30. The early headlines used "fetus," even though the baby had already been born in a violent way. Fox News started with "Pregnant Massachusetts Woman Killed, Fetus Taken." ABC News reported "Mom-to-Be Darlene Haynes Killed, Cops Search for Her Fetus." CNN's story was "Woman Killed, Fetus Cut From Body."
The same thing occurred in newspapers. The Boston Globe's headline was "Authorities in Worcester seek killer in case of fetus cut from womb." The Boston Herald echoed: "Officials search hospitals for victim's fetus."
It's one thing to insist that a "fetus" is an unborn baby. But once the "fetus" has been removed -- and survives -- what is the excuse for journalists to search for a "fetus" on the lam? This baby that first saw the light of day in such a foul and violent fashion deserved better than to be described merely a "fetus," with all the compassion you would offer a stolen lab rat.
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