The Corner

Desperately Spinning Planned Parenthood’s Ugliness

The pro-abortion lobby is desperate to spin Planned Parenthood’s ugliness into something benign.

Over at what is left of the New Republic, Jen Gunter falls back on the obfuscation of medicaleze to pretend that a dismembered fetus isn’t a dismembered human being.

First, showing that she is engaged in a political salvage job–rather than scientific elucidation–she labels the Center for Medical Progress “anti-choice:” From, “The Many Manipulations of the Planned Parenthood Attack Videos:”

The anti-choice organization Center for Medical Progress—which, in 2013, claimed tax-exempt status as a biomedical charity—has recently released two “undercover” videos of Planned Parenthood officials discussing post-procedure tissue donation. The group claims the videos demonstrate that Planned Parenthood profits from fetal tissue donation (which would be illegal) and that they are “haggling” over the price of “baby parts.”

As an OB/GYN, I can tell you that neither of these claims are true.

Gunter insists we call these dismembered fetuses, “products of conception:”

Whether a woman has a miscarriage or an abortion, the tissue specimen is called “products of conception.” In utero, i.e. during pregnancy, we use the term “embryo” from fertilization to ten weeks gestation and “fetus” from ten weeks to birth. The term baby is medically incorrect as it doesn’t apply until birth.

Actually, the proper medical term is neonate. “Baby” is so medically incorrect!

For that matter, the “just a blob of cells” denigration–so often pushed by pro-abortion types–isn’t medically correct either, and yet I will bet Gunter has never sought to criticize that dehumanization.

Moreover, this discussion is not a class in med school. It is an issue being debated in the public square about proper public policy. 

The question presented is whether taxpayer money should go to a controversial (to say the least) organization that kills fetuses–that’s accurate–and apparently sometimes does so in a “less crunchy way” to better enable abortionists to fill orders for fetal organs and tissues.

What Gunter fails to mention in her attempt to dehumanize unborn human life is that according to embryology text books–that’s science!–embryos and fetuses of our species are human beings. Moreover, these textbooks are very clear about when human life begins. Here’s a sampling (my emphasis):

Human development is a continuous process that begins when an oocyte (ovum) from a female is fertilized by a sperm (or spermatozoon) from a male. (p. 2); … but the embryo begins to develop as soon as the oocyte is fertilized. (p. 2); … Human development begins at fertilization, the process during which a male gamete or sperm … unites with a female gamete or oocyte … to form a single cell. This highly specialized, totipotent cell marks the beginning of each of us as a unique individual. (p. 18) Keith Moore and T.V.N. Persaud, The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology (6th ed.)

Here’s another useful quote from another embryology textbook:

Although life is a continuous process, fertilization … is a critical landmark because, under ordinary circumstances, a new, genetically distinct human organism is formed when the chromosomes of the male and female pronuclei blend in the oocyte. Ronan O’Rahilly and Fabiola Muller, Human Embryology & Teratology, 3rd ed.

What the heck, one more:

Zygote. This cell results from the union of an oocyte and a sperm during fertilization. A zygote is the beginning of a new human being (i.e., an embryo).” Moore, Keith L. and Persaud, T.V.N. The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology. 7th edition. 

In other words, the science of embryology supports the assertion that embryos and fetuses are human beings, e.g., living human organisms. These nascent human beings are what Planned Parenthood destroys. 

And get this drivel:

Just as there are people who believe the moon landing was faked, there are those who refuse to believe that the full scope of reproductive health care is grounded in medical evidence.

The moon landing was a factual and verifiable event. Hence, those who deny it are delusional.

In contrast, those attacking Planned Parenthood are hardly delusional. Rather, their criticisms are based on evidence of another apparently factual truth; that PP not only dismembers fetuses, but sometimes does so in a way to be able to keep certain organs and tissues of these “products of [human] conception” intact and usable as so many crops. (Whether they “profit” from such actions remains to be determined.)

Gunter is certainly free to endorse such actions.  But trying to hide the fact of what Planned Parenthood is doing behind scientific jargon is the real equivalent to saying we never landed on the moon.


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