This morning, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans ruled that the state of Texas can enforce the Sonogram Law while it is being challenged in court.
In an important victory for the unborn in Texas, the court dismissed the claims of the Center for Reproductive Rights and Justice Sam Sparks in a stunning opinion that confirmed the sanctity of life and validated the efforts of Texas pro-life organizations, lawmakers, and Gov. Rick Perry.
This past Wednesday, January 4, in New Orleans, the battle over the Texas “Sonogram Law” waged on.
Texas Solicitor General Jonathan Mitchell faced off with Jennifer Rikelman, an attorney from New York’s Center for Reproductive Rights, before a panel of three judges from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals. The issue at hand? A temporary partial injunction ordered by Justice Sam Sparks in Austin this summer claiming the law violated the free speech rights of abortionists.
The bill, which was signed into law by Texas governor and current Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry last year, would require doctors to show abortion patients an ultrasound of their unborn babies, describe certain attributes of the fetus, such as its size, and allow the mother to hear the fetal heartbeat. While most of the law was temporarily struck down by Sparks, certain portions, such as a 24-hour waiting period, were not enjoined.
As a proud native Texan and Dallas resident, I have written about this case several times, most recently in September when I attended, incognito, a speech by Center for Reproductive Rights president Nancy Northup, hosted by Planned Parenthood North Texas, in which the case – and others like it around the country — was discussed at length.
I like Google. I use it a lot. Sometimes when I get bored I type in random word strings, such as “grapefruit courtney love mosquito” just to see if anything comes up. But I also use Google to find information about what’s going in with the abortion issue in the United States, and that’s the problem: I usually find what I need, and it’s giving me a bleeding ulcer.
Under the Texas law, the abortion provider would be required to describe the fetus and its limbs and organs and have the woman listen to the heartbeat of the fetus. It also requires that a woman wait 24 hours after the sonogram before undergoing the abortion… The restrictions are waived in cases of sexual assault, and the waiting time is reduced to two hours for women who live 100 miles or more from the abortion provider.
I wouldn’t have included the sexual assault clause, but it sounds pretty reasonable, right? Not to the CRR. Here is their response:
“This law is asking [doctors] to do something unethical at the cost of threatening to prosecute doctors for a crime, and forcing them to lose their medical license,” said Susan Hays, a Dallas lawyer for the New York-based Center.
How far down the rabbit hole have we fallen when people who are okay with abortion — the legal killing of a human being — use the word “unethical” to describe a doctor showing an ultrasound to an expectant mother?
If we think carefully about what CRR is saying in their lawsuit, it’s not that the mother is being misled. No one is arguing that. They simply can’t argue that, because it isn’t so.
So the CRR’s argument is against a doctor telling the truth to a patient before a procedure. That’s all the sonogram and its description is. In essence: Here is your baby, here are its arms and legs and head, this is how big it is, here is the heartbeat. All true. All factual information. No opinion, no commentary is required by the law. Many women, I know from experience, think of their babies as a “clump of cells.” The ultrasound proves otherwise. Shouldn’t they know, don’t they deserve to know, what it is an abortion will dismember and vacuum out of their womb?
What organization or individual sincerely interested in choice would be against the simple provision of information to a patient about to undergo a serious medical procedure?
None would. But the CRR are not interested in “choice.” They are interested in women continuing to have abortions. They are, as the title of the article accurately describes, a pro-abortion group. If all women in America decided spontaneously tomorrow to stop having abortions forever, do you think the CRR or Planned Parenthood would smilingly accept this? Oh, no. There would be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Choice has nothing to do with it.
We pro-lifers are pro-choice as well. We believe you should have a choice to participate — or not — in sex, which, in case you weren’t aware, more and more scientists believe leads directly to babies in many cases.
Once fertilization occurs, a separate human being is present, and the time for choice is over. It’s no longer “my body, my choice.” It’s a child, and the law should protect it.
The Sonogram Law is an attempt to do just that: advocate for the child who, in an abortion clinic, has no one on its side.
Here’s hoping CRR is unsuccessful in their attempt to deal a serious blow to the rights of the unborn in Texas.
According to the June 14 issue of The Daily Texan, “A New York-based reproductive rights group filed a class-action lawsuit Monday against a new law passed by the Texas Legislature that increases regulations on Texas women seeking abortions and physicians who perform the procedure.”
The legislation in question is of course the so-called sonogram bill, signed into law by Governor Rick Perry on May 19 of this year. The law requires that women in Texas be given a sonogram before an abortion. The woman is not required to view the ultrasound, but the doctor is required to point out features such as the size of the fetus.
The argument the Center for Reproductive Rights is using to advance its anti-life agenda is privacy, and it is as unsurprising as it is unconvincing. Abortion proponents have been screaming “PRIVACY!” at the top of their lungs since roughly the 1960s. Ironically enough, the “right to privacy” is guaranteed nowhere in our Bill of Rights or other founding documents. (The right to life, however, is the first one mentioned.)
The CRR is behaving as though every abortion took place after a heartfelt, informative discussion between a woman and her private physician, when in actuality the patient at an abortion clinic usually doesn’t see her doctor until she’s got her feet in the stirrups. As former abortion clinic owner turned pro-life activist Carol Everett described in her testimony to the Pro-Life Action League of Chicago, “The doctor walks in, sees the patient for the very first time, pats her on the leg, says, ‘Hi, baby, how are you?’ You call them ‘baby’ so you don’t have to remember their name. And she says, ‘Oh, I’m scared,’ or, ‘I’m cold.’ Never anything positive. And he doesn’t really ask her any questions. It’s just get the abortion done.”
So much for the myth of the noble doctor and his trusting patient, having their sacred and private relationship intruded upon by the tyrannical State. So much for the image of the empowered woman nodding soberly as her comforting physician helps her make an informed decision. That is what CRR would have us believe is going on when they lament, “The law treats women as if they are too immature or incompetent to make their own important medical decisions… It’s very demeaning and patronizing to women.”
Really? It’s demeaning and patronizing to women to require their doctors to make them aware of a medical procedure before they do it? Please give me just a small break.
Can we consider that maybe it’s demeaning and patronizing to women to pretend like we find this law demeaning and patronizing? Do you know how anti-lifers really find this law? Not demeaning. Not patronizing. Threatening. They know that if a woman views an ultrasound of her baby she is less likely to abort it, so they are going to do everything in their power to stop that from happening.
Behind every well-meaning feminist who has convinced herself that giving medical information to a woman is somehow demeaning to her, there is a Planned Parenthood lackey who is desperate to protect a multi-billion dollar business.
Carol Everett again: “I have seen doctors walk out after three hours work and split $4,500 between them on a Saturday morning.” Not too shabby.
And speaking again of an abortion doctor, she said, “If he discovers that she may be farther along than anyone thought she was, they stop right there, collect the money, and then finish the procedure… If abortion is such a good thing, why don’t they give them away? If abortion is such a good thing, why don’t they go ahead and do the abortion then, and trust you to pay the extra $200 when they’re finished?”
I would add: if abortion really doesn’t kill anything, really just rids the woman’s body of an extra clump of cells, why are they worried about showing her a sonogram? Is it because they’re afraid she might see something recognizable, something with a heartbeat, something human?
The sonogram image is a powerful one. It was another abortion provider turned pro-life activist, Dr. Bernard Nathanson, whose documentary “Silent Scream,” which showed a sonogram image of a fetus during an abortion, shocked the world in the early 1980s. President Reagan even had it screened at the White House. Former Planned Parenthood clinic director, now a best-selling pro-life author, Abby Johnson, had the epiphany that changed her life while viewing an ultrasound. Carol Everett said, “I’ve seen sonograms with the baby pulling away from the instruments…”
Who are we helping by withholding this information? I’ll give you a hint: it’s not women.
It’s an industry. It’s a multi-billion dollar industry.
The abortion clinic is not like a birthing center. You won’t find caring people, soft lighting, and comfortable chairs. You won’t have intimate heart-to-hearts with nurses who remind you of your great-aunt and doctors who remind you of your grandpa. You will find instruments of death and people who want your money. It’s a joke that these places are even referred to as “health care” facilities. They are factories, and the products they manufacture are dead children and wounded, empty women.