By Judie Brown
What is it that makes mainstream media all but ignore the horrors perpetrated by Kermit Gosnell? What is it that makes most Americans have only a passing interest, if any, in this gruesome case? And what can be done to change this? Today’s commentary addresses the heart of the matter and challenges each and every one of us to overcome this problem that has crippled our society.
There have been literally millions of words spoken and written about the 72-year-old abortionist who is now standing trial because of the aborted-but-born-alive babies he butchered.
Some have said that the mainstream media has done a poor job of covering this man and his evil deeds because its agenda does not include honesty on the subject of abortion. For example, Rush Limbaugh chided the mainstream media for the absence of adequate coverage of this trial, saying (speaking first in the voice of mainstream media), “Covering Gosnell trial, that might hurt our War on Women theme. The Republicans have this War on Women. Meanwhile, it’s an abortion doctor wreaking havoc on everybody in Philadelphia. ‘Oh, we can’t cover that. There’s no news there.’”
Pro-life blogger Jill Stanek published a special edition of her “Sunday Funnies” featuring Gosnell as the butt of the funnies.
President Barack Obama has not made a public comment on the abortionist’s grisly crimes. Recently, the reason given was because Gosnell’s case represents an “ongoing trial.” But we have to wonder if the president’s silence throughout is, instead, because the details of the case do not really bother him at all. When Obama was in the Illinois Senate, a bill was introduced three times to attempt to protect babies who survived “induced labor abortions.” According to Human Events, “On all three bills, Obama voted ‘present,’ effectively the same as a ‘no.’ Defining ‘a pre-viable fetus’ that survived an abortion as a ‘person’ or ‘child,’ he argued, ‘would essentially bar abortions, because the Equal Protection Clause does not allow somebody to kill a child, and if this is a child, then this would be an anti-abortion statute.’”
In addition, there is the American Life League tweet that points out that the only difference between the practices of late-term abortionists George Tiller and Kermit Gosnell is “about four inches.”
Clearly the topic has invoked a great deal of outrage and commentary from my fellow life advocates; yet there is one aspect of this most recent graphic example of the culture of death that we must confront—the public’s total apathy.
Society is impassive to the rights of babies not yet born; the culture is dismissive of what the act of abortion is actually doing to a person every time it is committed. The death and destruction in its wake do not move us to act.
We hear about a man who stored the tiny feet of his victims in glass jars, but we cannot relate. We are not driven to act to protect the innocent or to oppose abortion. Abortion has been around for 40 years now and, face it, every once in a while an abortionist makes a mistake, gets caught, and sometimes goes on trial. But life goes on.
Well, not really!
Life does not go on and has not for more than 50 million human beings in America. For 40 years it has been legal and culturally acceptable for a mother to pay a third party to have her baby killed. And for more than 40 years it has been legal for doctors to prescribe chemicals to their female patients that will affect their bodies in such a way that they will not get pregnant or, if they do, the baby will die before he or she is a week old.
Few women are ever told this because the practice of obstetrics has been in the deception business for a very long time, at least when it comes to sexual relations and pregnancy. This is why so few abortion proponents ever mention the word “baby.” It’s bad for business.
Gosnell’s story is a horror; he is in many ways the poster boy for murder and mayhem in our nation. He has terrorized and killed babies, maimed women, and only God knows what else with impunity since 1972. But then he got sloppy and murdered one too many babies born alive after abortion.
To my mind no end is in sight for such stories—not until my fellow Americans come to realize that human beings exist from the point of their creation and that their lives are not debatable, they are not fungible, nor are they disposable.
Abortion has dulled our appreciation for the human being. Abortion has facilitated our denial that selfless love is more important than self gratification. The result is apathy, and that is what the Gosnell trial is about—apathy that dismisses humanity for the sake of convenience.
Judie Brown is president and cofounder of American Life League and a three-time appointee to the Pontifical Academy for Life.