Human Rights

Planned Parenthood president: Women need abortion for Valentine’s Day

#WhatWomenNeed abortion

#WhatWomenNeed abortionPlanned Parenthood’s gone and done it again.

Remember this crude and desperate ad campaign by the abortion giant?

Or this horribly insane one?

Well, now, in supposed honor of women and Valentine’s Day, Planned Parenthood’s president, Cecile Richards, has posted a video about #WhatWomenNeed. And apparently, women need “safe, legal abortions” and, of course, “Planned Parenthood.”

I know that Cecile Richards brings up more than “abortion” here. But the thing is, we all agree on the rest. (As long as we’re talking about birth control that prevents pregnancy, not the kinds that end the life of an already developing baby. See the comments for more on this.)

Okay, rabbit trails aside, the true love that Valentine’s Day should represent is pushed to the side by claiming that women need abortion. Safe, dangerous, legal, illegal, white scrubs, back-alley – women don’t need any of it.

I am not empowered as a woman through the blood of my child. I am not more of a woman; I am not more free; I do not have more rights; I do not have more control of my life because I am allowed to tell a doctor that he can tear apart my child piece by piece. (That’s what D&E abortions do – common procedure in the U.S.)

Allowing a doctor to suck my baby’s spine into a suction tube and smash her skull through the power of this same suction is also not empowering. (That’s what suction, vacuum, and aspiration abortions do – probably the most common type of all, performed in the first trimester. You can watch a video here.)

In a chilling – but entirely true – account of a “safe and legal abortion,” former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson describes a suction abortion she witnessed. (You really should read the full account here.)

The cool air of the exam room left me feeling chilled. My eyes still glued to the image of this perfectly formed baby, I watched as a new image entered the video screen. The cannula — a strawshaped instrument attached to the end of the suction tube — had been inserted into the uterus and was nearing the baby’s side. It looked like an invader on the screen, out of place. Wrong. It just looked wrong.

My heart sped up. Time slowed. I didn’t want to look, but I didn’t want to stop looking either. I couldn’t not watch. I was horrified, but fascinated at the same time, like a gawker slowing as he drives past some horrific automobile wreck — not wanting to see a mangled body, but looking all the same.

My eyes flew to the patient’s face; tears flowed from the corners of her eyes. I could see she was in pain. The nurse dabbed the woman’s face with a tissue.

“Just breathe,” the nurse gently coached her. “Breathe.”

“It’s almost over,” I whispered. I wanted to stay focused on her, but my eyes shot back to the image on the screen.

At first, the baby didn’t seem aware of the cannula. It gently probed the baby’s side, and for a quick second I felt relief. Of course, I thought. The fetus doesn’t feel pain. I had reassured countless women of this as I’d been taught by Planned Parenthood. The fetal tissue feels nothing as it is removed. Get a grip, Abby. This is a simple, quick medical procedure. My head was working hard to control my responses, but I couldn’t shake an inner disquiet that was quickly mounting to horror as I watched the screen.

The next movement was the sudden jerk of a tiny foot as the baby started kicking, as if it were trying to move away from the probing invader. As the cannula pressed its side, the baby began struggling to turn and twist away. It seemed clear to me that it could feel the cannula, and it did not like what it was feeling. And then the doctor’s voice broke through, startling me.

“Beam me up, Scotty,” he said lightheartedly to the nurse. He was telling her to turn on the suction — in an abortion the suction isn’t turned on until the doctor feels he has the cannula in exactly the right place.

I had a sudden urge to yell, “Stop!” To shake the woman and say, “Look at what is happening to your baby! Wake up! Hurry! Stop them!”

But even as I thought those words, I looked at my own hand holding the probe. I was one of “them” performing this act. My eyes shot back to the screen again. The cannula was already being rotated by the doctor, and now I could see the tiny body violently twisting with it. For the briefest moment the baby looked as if it were being wrung like a dishcloth, twirled and squeezed. And then it crumpled and began disappearing into the cannula before my eyes. The last thing I saw was the tiny, perfectly formed backbone sucked into the tube, and then it was gone. And the uterus was empty. Totally empty.

Abortion is never “safe” for the babies who die every day. (Neither is it painless or without fear – read the description under that video.) And causing harm to our children – and ourselves – is never, never what women need.

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