Analysis

Want to end back-alley abortions? Support abortion restrictions.

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Every time pro-abortion activists want to win people over to their side, they bring up ‘back-alley’ abortions. Women need abortion to be legal, and they need Planned Parenthood — otherwise, they’ll be reduced to coat hanger abortions, they say. Yet at the same time, they oppose any restrictions on abortion, and oppose abortionists being held to the same standards that other doctors are. So what difference does it make, really?

At The Federalist, Chris Freund writes about the tragic story of a girl who got an abortion, using the pseudonym Tina. Tina went to Planned Parenthood seeking an abortion after she got pregnant. It was July of 2014, and she was still in her first trimester. She didn’t know it at the time, but things had gone horribly wrong…

Two months later, as Tina sat in the outpatient emergency department of a local hospital, she may have regretted her decision to trust Planned Parenthood. When the medical staff at that hospital told her she’d have to undergo a second-trimester abortion when she thought the Richmond Planned Parenthood had “taken care” things in July, perhaps she realized that the soft pastels and warm rhetoric had all been a lie.

While the name Tina is fictitious, the story above is real, and based on a patient file from the Virginia League for Planned Parenthood’s Richmond, Virginia, abortion center on Hamilton Street, included in an inspection report from a Virginia Department of Health official. According to the official’s report, obtained by The Family Foundation of Virginia through a Freedom of Information Act request, this is what happened.

Based on this report, one could conclude that the Richmond abortion center not only failed to perform the first-trimester abortion and potentially lied on the patient documentation, but also failed to properly read an ultrasound done during a follow-up appointment, not noticing that the unborn child was still there.

Perhaps there is another viable explanation, but the timeline would certainly indicate that the Richmond Planned Parenthood likely botched the abortion and the follow-up care, resulting in the patient ending up in an emergency room and hospital.

In 2013, then-Governor Bob McDonnell approved common-sense regulations for abortion facilities. This was in response to the horrors that had been found in Virginia’s abortion facilities; in 2012, every single abortion clinic inspected was found to be rife with violations. There were eighty citations among the nine clinics inspected. Employees spoke about how they didn’t know which instruments were clean and which ones weren’t. Staffers weren’t being properly vetted or trained. Drugs were expired, and one Gosnell-esque clinic even had a freezer containing spilled, frozen blood and remains of aborted babies.

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And these were the violations found when the staffers knew the inspectors were coming. This was inspection-worthy for them. What did it look like on a daily basis, when they thought no one was looking? It’s a truly chilling thought. But rather than being horrified that women were being given abortions under these conditions, pro-abortion activists were furious. They loudly complained about how the common-sense regulations, which required licensing and inspecting for abortion facilities (just like regular doctors), improved sanitary conditions, working emergency medical equipment, and so on. This was bothersome to the abortion lobby – and it didn’t take long for them to get their way; when pro-abortion Terry McAuliffe was elected governor, he made it his mission to get rid of the safety standards that had been put in place. He was successful in that mission, and made it a lot easier for women like Tina to be butchered and victimized.

As Freund points out, Tina’s is just one case that we know about. The secrecy and shame surrounding abortion makes it difficult to ascertain how many women are actually being butchered at Planned Parenthood clinics across the country, because most women who get abortions don’t want anyone to know. So if something goes wrong, they suffer in silence — and there are also no laws in Virginia that require medical personnel to report injuries or complications from abortions.

But that doesn’t mean women aren’t speaking out. Ayanna Byer sued Planned Parenthood for forcing her into an abortion and then botching the procedure. Plenty of other women have been injured by botched abortions — and some have died. But the abortion lobby doesn’t care about these women. They want to keep them quiet, hidden away. They’re not convenient for the pro-abortion narrative.

And so we continue on, with tattoo parlors, tanning salons, and veterinary clinics being inspected more than abortion facilities are — if they’re even inspected at all. So really, what does it matter if abortion is legal at this point? ‘Back-alley’ abortions, which pro-abortion activists speak out so fiercely about, and claim to want to prevent, are still happening. The abortionists are still maiming women. It’s just that instead of doing it under the cover of darkness, they’re doing it out in the open for everyone to see.

And for some insane reason, we let them get away with it.

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