Law & the Courts

The Latest Planned Parenthood Video Exposes Potential Infanticide. Start a Criminal Investigation Now

The seventh video from the Center for Medical Progress features testimony from Holly O’Donnell, a former procurement technician at StemExpress, a California company that — until recently — acquired (purchased?) aborted baby parts from Planned Parenthood. It’s horrifying. No, it’s beyond horrifying. It describes an act of infanticide that even America’s barbaric child-killing legal regime defines as murder.

Her story begins with seeing a baby who’s just been aborted — or at least she thinks it’s been aborted. Then, a colleague calls her over, and this happens:

“I want you to see something kinda cool. This is kinda neat.” [She says.] So I’m over here, and . . . the moment I see it, I’m just flabbergasted. This is the most gestated fetus and the closest thing to a baby I’ve seen. And she is, like, “Okay, I want to show you something.” So she has one of her instruments, and she just taps the heart, and it starts beating. And I’m sitting here, and I’m looking at this fetus, and its heart is beating, and I don’t know what to think. . . . She’s, like, “Do you know why that’s happening?” And I knew why that was happening. It’s because the electrical current — the nodes were still firing. And I don’t know if that constitutes . . . it’s technically dead, or it’s alive?

Federal law defines “born alive” as “the complete expulsion or extraction from his or her mother of that member, at any stage of development, who after such expulsion or extraction breathes or has a beating heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles, regardless of whether the umbilical cord has been cut, and regardless of whether the expulsion or extraction occurs as a result of natural or induced labor, cesarean section, or induced abortion.” So, yes, “technically” that child was alive. California law is also clear: “The rights to medical treatment of an infant prematurely born alive in the course of an abortion shall be the same as the rights of an infant of similar medical status prematurely born spontaneously.” But that’s not what happened. StemExpress wanted to “procure a brain,” so the baby had to die in gruesome fashion:

It had a face. It wasn’t completely torn up. It’s nose was very pronounced. It had eyelids. And its mouth was pronounced. And then since the fetus was so intact, she said, “Okay, this is a really good fetus, and it looks like we can procure a lot from it. We’re going to procure a brain. So . . . the moment I hear it . . . that means we’re going to have to cut its head open. We’re going to have to cut its head open. So, it’s, like, “Okay, so what you do is you go through the face.” I’m thinking, No I don’t want to do this. And she takes the scissors, and she makes a small incision right here [showing under her chin] and goes — I would say — to a little bit through the mouth. She’s, like, “Okay, can you go the rest of the way?” And I’m, like, [sighs] “Yes.” And I didn’t want to do this. And so she gave me the scissors and told me that I have to cut down the middle of the face. And I can’t even like describe like what that feels like.

Law enforcement should begin a murder investigation. Now. California Penal Code defines “murder” as the the “unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought.” And while the Code contains an exception for an abortion in compliance with California’s Therapeutic Abortion Act, slicing open the face of a born alive infant isn’t an “abortion.”

#related#California courts have held that the state doesn’t need to prove fetal viability as an element of fetal murder — in other words, a person can be convicted of murdering a fetus even when that fetus probably can’t live outside the womb. But in this case we’re not dealing with a “fetus.” We’re dealing with a living baby, a “human being” under relevant law. Indeed, California Health and Safety Code calls him or her an “infant,” not a “fetus.” Moreover, what O’Donnell describes is no “mere” failure to render proper care — which would cause a baby to die from more or less natural causes — but rather the affirmative act of killing with scissors. That’s murder.

It’s a murder that should surprise exactly no one. The kind of moral monsters who would kill a partially delivered fetus are exactly the kinds of moral monsters who would wait a few minutes longer and kill a baby after delivery. After all, what’s the logical, rational, moral, or scientific difference between an intact child — with a beating heart — inside the womb and that same child — with a beating heart — moments later outside the womb? The only meaningful difference is legal, the product of our Supreme Court’s and our nation’s most shameful moral failure.

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O’Donnell’s story continues with this last detail, a tiny act of humanity and a final act of brutality.

I remember holding that fetus in my hands when everyone else was busy and started crying and opened the lid and put it back [in the jar.] It’s really hard knowing you’re the only person who’s ever going to hold that baby.

Will California’s love for abortion — for the mass-scale slaughter of disproportionately minority babies — trump even its murder statutes? Will the Party of Death turn its back on evidence of a cold-blooded killing? I expect the pro-abortion Left to be true to its principles and rally to defend its favorite organization, the organization indispensable to its precious sexual revolution. After all, when you’re killing 327,000 babies per year, what difference does a few minutes make?

David French is an attorney and a staff writer at National Review.

David French — David French is a senior writer for National Review, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

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