This from the latest issue of "Habitat World" (a Habitat for Humanity publication): More children live in poverty today than did 30 years ago.
Thirty years ago... Hmmmm.... Now, lessee... What could have happened 30 years ago to affect the poverty level today? Hmmm... 1973... Anything come to mind?
After the abortion of my child I lost my teaching job. Parents were calling me encouraging me to sue. Some parents wanted to argue abortion rights with the school (apparently it had been an issue at somewhat clandestine meetings). I didn't want to argue at all. Truth be told, I was relieved. In the school's defense, I had been terribly ill with HG for more than six weeks. Because of the disease I was unable to adequately perform my duties (or eat or drink or anything else). They had to call subs in left and right. After I lost my child in an abortion I was an emotional wreck debating on whether or not I would kill myself. I could barely pretend everything was OK around the children, but whenever they would leave for special area I would dissolve into tears. I didn't care about life anymore much less blending or borrowing. And I was driven to despair over their tiny hands and lovely ways. A month of this and I informed my principal that I needed a leave of absence. He granted my request but secretly fired me and sent out letters to parents. It was shady, but I didn't care.
My kids hated the new teacher and a few parents wanted to fight to get me back, but I was suffering so much trauma from the abortion-related loss that I really couldn't do anything but lay on the couch and cry for literal days - and that's if I even made it to the couch. There were days I didn't get out of bed until 6 PM.
When my body had been sick with HG at least I was working towards something; the suffering had purpose. This new suffering, this heart sickness... it had no purpose; there was absolutely nothing to work for. This suffering was completely meaningless and would never come to any real end. Oh my shock at experiencing something worse than HG when I thought there could be nothing worse! Work? I didn't care.
When the HG was gone and I had the actual ability to get out of bed to bathe and eat and work, I didn't care to do any of those things. I just wanted my baby back, and my sorrow was all I could handle. People were really worried for me. My husband hid the gun. I saw mental health professionals several times a week and was "this close" to being forcibly admitted, but the HMO was finally working in my favor. As usual they wouldn't pay for treatment, and I didn't have a job, so I could go home and blow my brains out for all they (and I) cared.
A few months later I was still in the thick of it. I didn't move from the bed or the couch even to eat or bathe or go outside. There was nothing to say or do to remedy anything. It was over. People got sick of it. My mother-in-law suspected my emotional state was for the benefit of the family. One day when I was crying she turned to me and said, "You know, you don't have to do this to prove to us you're sorry. We believe you already." I had paid a high price to be better and according to them, by God, I needed to be better. It was, they felt, my duty. Plus, they just couldn't take it anymore.
I was needled (by my husband) into taking antidepressants, which was something I didn't want to do as I still had shellshock from all the medication trials in the pregnancy. I relented though, and when antidepressants didn't "cure" my grief, they switched meds. And when that didn't work they switched meds. And when that didn't work they switched meds. Finally I told them all what to do with their meds.
I tried several "post-abortion" counseling programs, but they didn't work. I tried envisioning my child as a radiant spirit, but that didn't work. Others prayed for me, but that didn't work. I tried symbolism and ceremony, but that didn't work. I tried going to the PASS site and talking to others, but that certainly didn't work. Nothing upon nothing patched me up. Where was my quick fix?
Everyone told me to get a job. That was the key. Get back into the normal swing of things. Act my way into thinking. So some fool hired me and I started life in a cubical. After all my hopes, dreams and aspirations as a hardworking (nearly 4.0) Elementary Ed. student at FSU, after years of student-teaching and subbing in the school system, after landing my first professional career and teaching for a year and a half, there I sat answering phones for plumbing and sewage for the state. Talk about taking your booger ice cream cone and rolling it in turd sprinkles. I planned my demise. The job lasted a month. I quit and went back to crying on the sofa (instead of gulping down the sobs in a cubical).
I haven't worked since. I have thought about it, but I'm terrified. I will never teach again, that much I know. That dream, that world, that girl is gone. Before, I could do anything but was inclined to teach. Now, I'm limited. I have thought about getting a life ethics degree and counseling or getting a nursing degree and running the sonogram machine for young women considering abortion. Those things I could do, those things would be satisfying and worthwhile. I could also finish my funeral director's license and work in that field. At least I wouldn't have to pretend to be cheery. My somber approach to death would even be deemed sensitive and appropriate. But honestly, I don't know if I'll ever go back to work. And luckily I have that option.
If it wasn't for my loyal, diligent husband, I can tell you with 100% certainty, I would have been out on the street and not even cared. I would have slept at the shelter or one of the shanties pictured in "Habitat World", and eventually I would have become one of these beyond-wounded people who walk around pushing shopping carts and talking to Elvis all day. They would have found me dead under an overpass like the body donations we used to get for embalming lab in funeral college. Abortion screwed me that much. It wasn't the HG, it wasn't my childhood, it wasn't even the cruel and lingering deaths of my parents.
IT WAS ABORTION.
What happened 30 years ago to add to the poverty (and emotional pathology) level today? The same thing that happened 6 years ago: horrible, terrible, legal abortion.
"Are you ready?" he asked. I couldn't answer. I had already caused enough trouble by being unable to do it when he initially came in the room. So he broke his own "no partner" policy and let my husband come in to talk to me. There were no answers; Reenter the abortionist. I argued my hesitancy and caused even more of a delay. It didn't solve anything. I was still beyond sick.
What to do, what to do?
"Are you ready?" Of course not. My mouth said I didn't want it, but my arm stretched outward towards the needle, the last needle I would need for this horrible, out-of-control, abnormal pregnancy. The needle went in; I felt its sting. The lights went out.
For six years I've had trouble sleeping. I have nightmares and a broken sense of peace in general, but an awareness of my arms (particularly the right one) keeps me half awake. I am on guard, protecting myself from unseen needles coming for my child in the night.
A few years ago I started restraining my right arm in a bent-closed position at bedtime. Nuts, yes, but I thought it might help me sleep, and I needed sleep what with a young child to raise. It gave me security, but it hurt my arm, so it didn't really help. Still, I'd sometimes do it anyway. Just because.
There's nothing unusual about last night's dysfunctional slumber. I was exhausted and even took skullcap (herbal sedative) like a good hippy, hoping to sleep the night through. But I had a terrible nightmare. In this dream I was preoccupied with an intruder bent on stealing my child from the bed as he slept. After successfully fighting off the intruder, I went to check on my son. On the way to the bedroom I noticed the back door was ajar. Terrified, I ran to the bed where the leftover pieces of my son lay. I had been tricked.
I woke up with my heart pounding in my ears. I felt for my son's tiny form. He was in one piece. I wanted to cry, but I don't cry anymore. I just... don't. Instead I kissed him on the head and spent the next hour and a half just listening to him breathe in awe. I had a living child. One of my three children made it through HG alive. I still can't believe it. In the quiet black of night, I'm a beaming daughter, marveling to God that a baby of mine lived. "Listen to him breathe, Lord! He's alive! I did it! I HAD A BABY! ThankYouthankYouthankYou!"
I knew I should try and get some rest for the long day ahead, so I closed my eyes and prayed for sleep. It came but not without my nagging arms. This one fell outstretched and then that one. Each time I woke up. Each time I quickly tucked an appendage tightly inward, hiding the vulnerable, forfeiting crook. Part of me is stuck somewhere.
When I sleep I go back to the gurney. And there I know he is coming... coming to get me with his crude-looking dilators and white plastic bell jar. Like an ad for sorrow the tools of his trade are neatly displayed on a bi-level cart. I can hear its squeaking wheels as they approach.
First, I would like to thank the SICLE moms who wrote me with positive comments about yesterday's blog. Here's my favorite:
"Great one....the cube stickers is an excellent illustration. I refuse to be a sticker picker. I thought I was the only one refusing to play the "healing" game, but you're the biggest ass-kicking, non-stickerpicker of all. We are in this together! "
Second, the fact that Emily blogged on the same subject at After abortion was total coincidence. Neither of us planned to double-team the PASS site; we simply showed up to the party wearing the same dress. Out of her genuine compassion for women she chose to remove yesterday's very insightful (and incite-ful) blog because some of the PASS moms had been hurt by it.
Third, the posts got people talking. While I stand by my perspective, my intent was not to hurt anyone. As the SICLE Cell description says, this is "my view". No one has to like it, but no one is allowed to take it away. That being said...
The brouhaha over this subject shows that people are thinking (which is what it's all about). I myself am newly interested in denial and the purpose it serves. It's a coping mechanism. It's there for a reason. It gets a negative rap, but can it ever be healthy? I wondered to a friend yesterday that perhaps some others NEED denial for awhile, because the reality of abortion can be too big to deal with all at once. Maybe for some, the benefits of denial may outweigh the risks of confrontation. In other words, if repressed grief can manifest as various dysfunction (alcohol abuse, promiscuity, etc.) that still may be better than a total self-confession that leads to suicide. It is documented that confronting abortion-related child loss literally kills some moms.
One woman who lost 7 children in abortions only admitted to three. For her anything over that number was too much. Finally, she confronted all seven and within a year successfully committed suicide. While abortion was primarily to blame, confronting what she had done didn't help her. For her it might have been better to deny as much of it as she could. It might not have made her a whole person, but it might have kept her alive and given her more time to deal with it incrementally. In certain doses at certain intervals, I concede that nonacceptance can serve a purpose.
Even I still catch myself practicing a sort of denial. Most of my waking day I try to convince myself that this isn't my life and that none of it happened. Of course I don't really believe it, but denial makes it easier to move normally throughout the day so that required tasks can be undertaken. However, I wouldn't suggest to another grieving mother that she didn't really abort her child. For me, denial is a novel pacifier- not the oxygen I breathe and not my personal crusade.
Although abortion kills a child and significantly raises maternal health risks, I don't demand that women feel bad about that. In the same way, no one should demand that they feel good. People should feel as they feel and be met right where they're at. People spend years and thousands of dollars in educational institutions learning how to offer healthy, appropriate therapy. Meanwhile virtual boards are full of self-appointed pseudo-shrinks whose only credentials are having "been there". But no one has ever really been in another's shoes, so the credential is flawed. And good support is not an easy gig.
Yesterday afternoon a cashier asked me, "How are you today?" I gave her my usual ignorable answer: "I'm getting along, and how are you?" She looked down at her feet and quietly replied, "I'm a loser." This unexpected answer threw me a little, and without thinking I followed my first instinct which was to say: "No you're not!" Of course she didn't believe me, and walking to my car I realized I hadn't met her where she was at. In three short words I demanded that she not disturb me with her "inappropriate" grief. I demanded that she feel better immediately. She was crying out and I shut her up. It's frustrating to realize that the response I used to try and help her in fact assured that she would find no help in me. I should have gone with her original assessment. I should have said, "If you feel like a loser, you must be very depressed." Then I could have given her my shrink's card or even my email address. If I had opted for the latter though, I would have had a responsibility to meet her where she was at, and that is a very difficult thing to do.
Meaningful support is hard to provide and even harder to come by. Instead of insisting that any ol' positive tape constitutes healthy support, we should really strive to honestly meet people where they are at. It may take more work, but that's the kind of sincere commitment a self-appointed helper should be willing to accept. There are no quick fixes, and that may be a difficult concept to convey to lay-supporters who feel positive about abortion.
I've been online with my experience for the last 6 years. The SICLE is in a constant state of evolution and never ceases until it's time for the big dirt nap. Over the years I've received over a thousand related emails, and most of them have been very supportive and encouraging. Still, there have been a few folks who have sent vitriol-laden missives that would make an abortionist blush.
Part of the definition of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is having gone through something that travels beyond the realm of usual human experience. Abortion-related PTSD exists because humans do not usually reach up into their wombs and yank out their own progeny. The species isn't wired for that. On an instinctual level, induced abortion doesn't make sense. But people strive to find order in everything, so we are constantly trying to make sense of what happened. If we can just order everything, figure it out, neatly compartmentalize every factor, maybe the Rubik's cube will finally solve, and we'll have a lock on healing or at least real, solid closure. Until then, we're like a clockwork mouse bumping into the wall over and over and over again as we repeatedly ask ourselves the same unsolvable questions ad nauseum. (The featured query being "How could I have done that?!")
Some mothers want to solve it so badly (and quickly) that they cheat (and encourage others to do the same). They force the stickers off the cube and move them to their unassigned but apparently solved spots. The solution is an illusion. Some of these false moves often involve insincere mantras of:
"You did the best thing you could at the time."
"You weren't weak; just the fact that you got an abortion proves how strong you really are."
"It wasn't really a baby."
These post-abortion moms meet on "neutral" boards that are anything but. Many sit in sticker-swapping circles like children trading baseball cards at recess. They are more concerned with uniformity than they are with dealing with the genuine disarray of mismatched sides. The seemingly "finished" cube keeps them sane. Don't dare suggest that a woman has a right to determine that abortion was a mistake. When a mom suspects that she had a responsibility to her child, do not agree that such a feeling is at all rational. Instead give her a sticker: "Try and remember all the very good reasons you had for getting that abortion. They were very important or else you wouldn't have had the strength to make such a difficult decision." Don't allow anyone to get hold of a genuine cube; Give them a platitude or get out.
I think it explains why, of the small percentage of hate-mail I've received, the nastiest letters have come from other women who say their self-imposed child loss was a positive event. I have been accused of being mentally ill for hurting so badly over the loss of a 15-week-old know-nothing, feel-nothing, be-nothing fetus. I have been called a liar who never lost a child in the first place. I have been dismissed as a lackey for the "pro-life" movement and even my gender has been questioned. I have been hated, insulted, gagged, and verbally abused for grieving, questioning, evolving, confronting, speaking, and refusing to lift so much as a corner of a sticker. I'm not saying everyone has to react as I have or feel as I do, but it is wrong to silence the ones who do. I would not be shocked to discover that women's biggest contemporary oppressors are in fact women.
Leo Buscaglia once said, "Those who are hardest to love need the love the most." It encourages me to be gentle with the sticker-swappers who hate me for calling their game. They probably have the most to lose.
I admire Jennifer O'Neill for taking a stand for women and children by opposing abortion. Jennifer lost a child of her own in a coerced abortion, and she knows the pain and suffering well. I am grateful to her for her voice and advocacy and want her to keep up the good work, but... she kind of reminds me of Rosie O'Donnell and Melissa Etheridge in that she advocates opposing causes thereby sending a conflicting message. While O'Neill opposes abortion, she also promotes it as a chairperson for various chapters of the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the March of Dimes (MOD).
My grandparents, the parents who raised me for the better part of my life, both died of cancer. And they didn't just wake up dead one day; cancer lingers. It toils away reducing the sufferer to Shakespeare's "second childishness"; mewling and puking once again, the afflicted trudges off helpless towards the grave.
I have seen cancer's python slither in from a dark corner, wrap its black coils around the people I love, tighten it's grasp over a period of months until lungs were useless, air met no purpose, and I was painting dead fingernails casket pink. I know cancer; I take it personally and I loathe it with a greedy passion, but I would never attempt to fight a python epidemic by confining the constrictors to women's houses.
The ACS has a dirty little secret: they're sexist with a capital "S". They discriminate against women in particular when they lie that abortion does not increase a woman's risk of deadly breast cancer. So a group that fights cancer causes cancer. If you are fighting abortion in advocacy of the emotional and physical health of women, it isn't rational to support a group that misleads women unto death. Neither would it be sensible to promote the abortion of the differently-abled which is exactly what the MOD does.
When is good news bad news? When the MOD "prevents" birth defects (by preventing the special-needs child from being born). The "success" of the March of Dimes reminds me of the reports that occasionally come out celebrating lower teen birth rates. Sounds great, but they're only talking about birth rates, not pregnancy (and abortion) rates. When I know that one of the ways the MOD reduces birth defects is by aborting differently-abled children, there is no way I could ever aid their cause. I wonder why O'Neill does.
I wish Jennifer would disassociate herself from the ACS and the MOD, because components of those causes deeply conflict with her pro-woman efforts against abortion. It is my feeling that she will be much more effective at preventing abortion once she stops promoting it.
I was going to write about Melissa Etheridge (adoptive parent) and her major support of abortion , but she and Rosie are in roughly the same category, so what more can I say than "ditto" for Etheridge. Thinking about the two I have to wonder: what is it with the gay thing and abortion?
My gramma taught me how to work with glass. I've always been kind of "no-nonsense", so initially she didn't think I would like the craft since it took a lot of patience and often involved burning yourself and bleeding. But I so enjoyed the satisfaction of the finished work that I plainly took to the art and in no time had amassed several beautiful panes. Every now and again I would pay for studio time so I could go and learn a new technique, and I got rather chummy with staff, one of whom is a lesbian/adoptive mother.
One day as I was deliberating over particular shades of glass, somehow the subject of abortion came up. My friend was talking about so-and-so's crisis pregnancy and she basically said, "I don't know what her problem is. I mean, she can always just 'take care of it', right!" I paused in shock, looked her dead in the eye and said, "Yeah, she can make an adoption plan, so someone else can become a parent like you did." Needless to say, the subject was never broached again.
I'm always completely flabbergasted when people who struggle with equality and civil rights issues turn around and practice the same hated discrimination on someone else. The victim becomes the victimizer; hypocrisy abounds. The abusive cycle is perpetuated instead of broken by people who should know better. Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a forerunner in the suffrage movement and no stranger to blatant discrimination, recognized that none are liberated until all are liberated: "When we consider that women are treated as property, it is degrading to women that we should treat our children as property to be disposed of as we see fit." Gays, blacks, women, the differently-abled and anyone who typically suffers disenfranchisement should make a mental note and fall in step with the cause of refusing to accept abortion as the best anyone can do.
In my experience, the vast majority of lesbians I have known have supported abortion. Gay men usually support abortion as well, because I think they think it's expected of them. If you're straight and oppose abortion, you're going to catch flak from your gay friends. But if you're gay and and oppose abortion you're going to have your card revoked. Thank God for groups like PLAGAL who seek to educate their peers.
I think I've talked before about my best friend who happens to be gay. We met in detention in 7th grade. I don't have one surviving note from any of my boyfriends, but somewhere in a box in the attic, I have a stack of letters between he and I. They normally start out with something profound like: "Ms. Aller wears combat boots and so does yo mammy." And the reply: "Aller's got nothin' on 'Bland'ton's Napoleon complex, and you can eat hot death for that comment about my mama, hunbun." Back and forth they flew. Years of this. We were even band geeks together. And throughout the phases and cycles of our lives we've always had the requisite 7th grade detention bond that is not always tangible yet somehow ends in lasting friendship.
He got on a plane one day and moved as far away from me as he could possibly go while still technically remaining in the country. But before he left, the happiest surprise in my life fell my world apart.
I don't think he could ever really relate to what I went through, what with him being a single gay male with no desire ever to parent a child, but he was there for me. He never bugged me with platitudes or personal philosophies; he just mostly hated it for me, and we went out to eat a lot. Occasionally (or perhaps more than occasionally) our conversation would turn towards my SICLE-related epiphanies, and when I really started to understand the "Gestaltic" synergy of humanity, the whole "Lion King" circle of life thing and how abortion fit in (or DIDN'T fit in), he was the first to hear about it.
Initially, he was a good gay and didn't agree with me, but I had gained enough perspective from the PLAGAL site that I could talk to him on a personalized level. In the midst of our discussions, news broke that someone in England had come close to identifying the fat gene. A poll was taken and a few ethically devoid characters opined that they would indeed abort a child who tested positive for a propensity towards obesity. This was the perfect conversational "in". I asked my equally Southern friend what he thought would happen when the male fetus of "Bubba" and "Lurleen" tested positive for the gay gene down in Hillbilly, Florida. Suddenly something that he insisted really wasn't his issue aimed its sparkling lance at the abortionless bubble of his world. It was grease for the cog; he really began to think about abortion and the proliferation of its reaching tendrils.
That's what I wish Etheridge and O'Donnell and all the double-whammy, gay adoptive parents would do: stop spouting the "required" abortion rhetoric long enough to fully consider how abortion deeply and soulfully conflicts with their other precious causes and how it threatens and robs the rest of the world.
One of my windows (preexisting pattern) that represents my husband and I after the loss of our child through abortion.
When I lost my four-month-old child in an abortion, a certain song was in constant radio play. Some of the lyrics are:
"Remember the good times that we had?
I let them slip away when times got bad."
"I'm so afraid to love you, but more afraid to loose
Clinging to a past that doesn't let me choose
Once there was a darkness, deep and endless night
You gave me everything you had, oh you gave me light"
"And I will remember you
Will you remember me?
Don't let your life pass you by
Weep not for the memories."
If I hear this song today it pierces the vacuum of time and the freeze-dried crystals of fresh emotion come roaring fragrantly to the surface. Lots of songs cast their personal reflections on my SICLE, but this is one of the biggies. It was written by a lovely woman who is lucky to be alive.
Sarah McLachlan was born to a 27-year-old Canadian art student who felt she could not raise a child. Instead of ending a personally unwanted pregnancy, the student made an adoption plan and compassionately carried her child to term. Sarah was born and adopted by loving parents whom she adores. Her music is great, her lyrics are striking, and in light of her own personal circumstances, one of her major causes is particularly unconscionable.
Sarah, an adopted child, is a huge fan of abortion rights. Instead of helping other little Sarahs make it out alive so they too can grow, experience the world, and pursue their own destinies, Sarah helps to ensure that her peers, the "unwanted", will never see the light of day. She is one of the many who believe strongly that a woman has a fundamental right to end a personally unwanted pregnancy. On her scale, a mother's choice trumps a child's physical well-being. It's dangerous and sad and, for her, obscenely hypocritical.
At a Rock for "Choice" benefit concert Sarah was openly disgusted by the never-ending controversy over the legal destruction of "unwanted" children like herself. "It seems absolutely bloody ridiculous we have this issue still in 2001," she complained. "Let's not go back to the dark ages." Her reference is to the age before legalized abortion, the age when she was legally protected in her mother's womb, the age wherein she herself was afforded a life that she might not otherwise have.
Abortion has snuffed out over 40 million lights in this country alone. It's amazing to me that someone as bright as McLachlan (and as "unwanted") cannot see that the world is not illumined by death, that we are living in the dark ages now, and that she is using her gift to cast long black shadows on the deepening void.
Like so many celebrities, Rosie O'Donnell supports abortion. When you consider that all of her children were adopted, it's particularly perplexing. No stranger to contradiction, the out and proud Roe-nut, wrote a book that expresses her opinion that adoption is God's mistake for choosing a family. Meanwhile she says, "Nothing happens by chance."
And how does she explain the antithetical nature of her belief in abortion and her avid defense of children and their rights? She says, "I'm 'pro-choice' but I personally would never have an abortion." To listen to her one might get the idea that she "personally" feels abortion is a bad thing.
Rosie is a sucker. She's a sucker just like I was when I swallowed Roe hook, line and sinker and held the same incongruent philosophy. I supported abortion for all the faceless American women I thought I cared about (but didn't), and in my arguments never failed to cite the Ace in my pocket: abortion for the "tough cases" involving rape/incest and health issues. Never mind the reality that roughly 95% of abortions are purely elective, and forget the studies that show that the majority of those pregnant from rape/incest don't want abortion. Don't mess up a good-sounding argument with facts!
Abortion supporters like to justify and foster their belief by exploiting extraordinarily sad cases like the 14-year-old girl who is raped and impregnated by her minister. What good "pro-choicer" wouldn't drive such a child to the abortion clinic herself? But the child conceived in that situation is no less a child, and Rosie can attest to this truth since one of her children was conceived in exactly that circumstance. "I'm lucky to have adopted my children," says a passionate O'Donnell. It's a wild understatement that her own promotion of abortion helps to make possible. Every time Rosie takes a stand for abortion, she robs a child of life and adds to the unluckiness of other parents seeking to adopt.
She fails to notice her inconsistencies. In her support of gun control, she says, “The NRA is buying votes with blood money," and she once reminded Cokie Roberts that 4,000 children are killed every year by guns. But where is her concern for the nearly 5,000 American children who are killed every single day by abortion? And what kind of money was she using when buying votes for big-time abortion advocate Janet Reno?
When asked if she thought the NRA cares less about children than she does, Rosie had this to offer: “I would say, maybe they care about their own kids. But not kids in general." Is this the same Rosie who says: "I'm 'pro-choice' but I personally would never have an abortion."
I am disappointed in Tim McGraw for recording the song "Red Rag Top". Upon reading the lyrics you can see the song is about a couple who broke up after aborting their child.
Jason White wrote the song and says that while it does talk about abortion it takes no sides. Anyone who says they don't have an opinion on the subject supports abortion. The song itself perpetuates the myth that abortion is what most people think it is: just one of those things that will become a part of a managable, mistaken past like drinking your first underaged beer and throwing up or getting your sophomore cherry popped by the senior skating rink Romeo. The song says: "You do what you do and you pay for your sins. There's no such thing as what might have been." Talk about wishful thinking.
Most people walking into an abortion clinic know that what they are doing is far from compassionate or ethical, but they do it anyway. Why? Because they're freaked out. They're in a crisis and they don't fully understand the implications of abortion. I can tell you from personal experience that even I didn't really understand the full consequences or gravity of my actions. I'm not alone. Just go to the Seriously Grieving board and watch as the new posts mount up. Abortion is a big huge deal, much more than "deciding not to have a child" as the song would have you believe. I had a child alright... a dead child who was born in pieces.
"There's no such thing as what might have been." Typical denial reaction (and abortion supporting rhetoric). The message seems to be "There will be consequences for aborting a child, but when you are hurting, just remember there's no such thing as what might have been." In other words, just keep telling yourself the child was a very young "pre-child" in the early unconscious stages of humanity. It probably couldn't feel or think like a "real" child can, so don't torment yourself with who that child might have been as that is not reality. You nipped pregnancy in the bud before the child ever really was. So while it was more than deciding to don a rubber it was still less than ending the life of a child. It's just one of those inbetween things that, after the fact, is better left alone. Typical, typical, typical point of view (particularly from the male perspective).
If I had heard an artist I like singing "Red Rag Top" at the time I was thinking of abortion, it would only have perpetuated the false impression that abortion was just something that had to be done sometimes, a necessary evil that you just dealt with and moved away from. But it's a tad more than that for many people, and Tim had some idea.
McGraw says he knew the song would cause something of a stir, but he defends it saying, "...I don't think liking this song compromises your integrity." Integrity?
Once there was a young woman who had a passionate moment "in the back of a red rag top". Later she found out she was pregnant. She was scared and upset and felt she couldn't possibly raise a child. Abortion was illegal at the time which probably factored into her decision to carry the baby to term. The mom made an adoption plan for the baby, and two loving parents were blessed with a beautiful new daughter. The little girl grew up and got a job singing. She met a guy at work, fell in love with him, married him and had three children with him. Their life together became an incredible fairytale. One that would not have been possible if the girl's birth mother had simply "decided not to have a child".
Tim McGraw ought to really consider how abortion hasn't affected him, because his wife was that little girl. She was what abortion supporters describe as an "unwanted child". This should mean more to him than recording a "neutral" song about abortion.
I love Tim's music, but he made a grave mistake in the choice of "Red Rag Top". I guess when you have it made like he does, it's hard to think of all the other young guys out there who will never quite find their soulmates because those little girls were aborted. He ought to be thanking God that Faith's birth mother wasn't pregnant when abortion was legal. He ought to be eternally grateful that Elvis wasn't singing a song that described abortion as just doing "what you do" without ever looking back or thinking of just how much the loss of one child affects the world.
I am a child of the 70's and unlike most kids my age I was a music NUT. Carly Simon, Gerry Rafferty, England Dan and John Ford Coley... America, Bread, James Taylor and Helen Reddy. Although I confess that I love me some disco, you can see that in my heart I'm an easy listening girl. I like carnations and books, saddle shoes and black and white movies, and I spent at least a few unhealthy prepubescent years more than slightly enamored with a young Mickey Rooney from the old Andy Hardy series.
I'm a closet dork. I've been one for as long as I can remember. I love all things retro, and my memory of popculture begins circa the invention of the atom bomb. A guy I know calles me "'55" because he swears that's the year I was born. He's 5 years older than me and has to call his grandmother to figure out what I'm talking about. I own sweater clips for goodness' sake, and it's easier (and more interesting) for me to talk to a 70-year-old woman about gardening than it is to talk about fashion with an age-appropriate peer. Maybe part of my premature senior citizenship is from living with my grandparents.
In 1977 I pestered Grampa until he gassed up the white Thunderbird (with the trendy red naugahyde interior, baby) and zoomed down the street to the theater in the old Kmart shopping center in Nashville, Tennessee. Pete's Dragon had just come out, and I was delighted. It was an actual kids' flick, and I could go to watch Mickey Rooney and Helen Reddy "legitimately". My eyes were glued to the screen, and when the lights came up I knew that someday I would be a movie star so I too could get paid for playing dress-up and dancing on exploding beer barrels just like Reddy.
On the way home her voice came on the radio singing "You and Me Against the World". I was only six-years-old, but even then it choked me up. In case you missed it, it's the quintessential single mother anthem of the universe. The song most noted by feminists in the 70's had nothing to do with motherhood however, and was called "I Am Woman". It was also pretty catchy and didn't squirm around in your guts like "You and Me..." did. At the time, I was still wearing days-of-the-week underwear and had quite a penchant for Saturday morning Sid and Marty Krofft, but I knew what I liked, and I idolized Helen Reddy. "Delta Dawn" was my favorite. (What was that flower she had on?) That song came on the radio and no one was allowed to risk the loss of even one note by so much as breathing. (Truth be told, I kinda felt the same way about Rhinestone Cowboy, but that's a closely guarded secret). Oh to be a kid again and not the adult who grew up and was horrified to discover how proud Helen Reddy is of the fact that I was able to legally kill my child and also ruin my life.
Yep, in addition to having a gorgeous face and a set of golden pipes she also supports killing innocent children in the name of "choice". It makes me shudder. Needless to say, when a Reddy song comes on I hear it in a whole new way. See if you don't feel the same...
Here are a few lyrics Reddy and company sing in Pete's Dragon's "There's Room For Everyone":
"There's room for everyone in this world
if everyone makes some room
won't you move over and share this world
everyone make some room..."
"From an ant to a bird
to a buffalo herd
let them walk and fly and roam
LET THEM LIVE
it's simple to give
like us they just need a home"
"Just think how far out the ocean goes
The whirling wind blows
shore to shore
door to door
Think of the valleys and mountaintops
The earth never stops
there's miles of sky
we all have a part of the pie"
"There's room for everyone in this world
Will everyone make some room
Love given freely can spare this world
Let friendly feelings bloom
Just give an inch, give a yard, never flinch
When the time comes to offer a hand
So let's all make sure
We give everyone somewhere to stand
Just the way God planned it
Just the way God planned it."
If that doesn't just beat everything, check out a few lines from "I Am Woman":
"I am woman watch me grow...
But I'm still an embryo
With a long long way to go
Until I make my brother understand"
(Wait, did she just call herself an "embryo" in an argument to be recognized as an equal person under the law???) Not only did a seemingly very confused Reddy write the single mother anthem and the feminist anthem, apparently she has also written the abortion-related post traumatic stress disorder anthem (also known as "post abortion syndrome"). Read a few lyrics (or the whole song) from "Leave Me Alone":
"Big ole ruby red dress, everybody laughs
Say she's got no future and never made no past
Something hurt that ruby, something she can't bear
Ya look at her real close now, you see a little tear
When she says now
LEAVE ME ALONE (repeat over and over)
Some folks say some farm boy up from Tennessee
Taught it all to Ruby, then just let her be
Her daddy tried to hide it, tried to keep things cool
But something happened to Ruby, she broke down to a fool"
I throw my hands up. I simply don't understand Reddy's support of abortion. I just sit here, shake my head, and feel betrayed (and stupid for never noticing the contradictions before). If she lost a child in a second trimester abortion because no one would help her any other way... well I can't help but wonder if she'd be "singing a different tune".
If I can stand the frustration, I think for the next couple of blogs I'm going to talk about the obliviousness of famous people whose ties to abortion are particularly baffling due to the fact that the rejection of abortion in a crisis pregnancy either saved their own lives or filled their hearts with unending love. The subject is the stuff ulcers are made of.
A couple of years ago I got the call: "They're on sale NOW. Go get yours before anything happens."
I jumped in the car and rushed down to the tag office where I bought 3 Choose Life tags. I talked to the office's head honcho and asked him what the chances were that opposing forces would be able to get an injunction and my tags. He said, "Once these things are on cars, I'd say the chances are pretty much nil."
But abortion supporting groups (including the National Organization for Women a.k.a. N.O.W.) sought to shut these tags down and have them all recalled. I dared anyone to tell me what I could or could not display on my car.
I'm a butt, so I immediately snail-mailed the NOW a picture of the backs of my three cars all lined up in the driveway with shimmering yellow Choose Life tags. On the front was the bold caption: "How ya like me N.O.W.?" I also emailed them and said, "Hey, I'm a woman and I want this tag on my car. Why are you trying to take away my choice?" Surprisingly they wrote back: "We support your right to go out and get a bumper sticker saying whatever you want it to say." I wrote back: "You say it's OK for me to sport a bumper sticker but not a license plate. Since when do you get to decide HOW I am allowed to convey a message on my own vehicle? I have a new car. I don't want a tacky bumper sticker plastered on the back of it." The NOW representative wrote back: "I can't argue with that."
But argue they did, under the representation of the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy. At one point they claimed that the phrase "Choose Life" was a Biblical quote, and for the state to authorize a plate with a Biblical quote was a violation of the separation of church and state. Gimme a break. It's two words. You could take "in the" out of the Bible too, but that doesn't make it a Biblical phrase. When the argument didn't work, they tried something else.
The next phase was to accuse the state of violating the First Amendment (freedom of speech). This was even more ridiculous than the first argument. The abortion advocates said that because only one side of the debate was represented by a specialty tag, the state was only supporting one message. This, as the argument went, somehow prevented abortion supporters from being heard. But here's the kicker: abortion advocates never even tried to get their own "Choose Choice" tag! (Or perhaps they tried and didn't have enough public support to get the thing off the ground. Most people are kind of wishy washy about abortion. Of the ones who support it, many feel it's just this hushed necessary evil that they'd rather personally forget about, but it's not something they're going to go out and have a parade-or a special tag-over.)
In addition to demanding that the tag violated freedom of speech, abortion groups also sought to receive funds generated from the sale of the tag. "I hate the tag, but give me the money it makes." Time and time again, their case against the tag has been rejected, but they keep appealing and guess who has to keep paying for all the lawsuits? The state of Florida. And you can guess where that money comes from.
Up, up, up the argument went, all the way to the Federal Appeals Court in "Hotlanta" (Atlanta, GA), but the 11th Circuit rejected the abortion supporters' arguments. It also schooled the abortion supporters on the First Amendment by basically saying states only have to protect the speech of those who wish to speak. They also threw in a lovely little zinger that makes me snicker every time I read it:
"The First Amendment protects the right to speak; it does not give Appellants the right to stop others with opposing viewpoints from speaking."
Leave it to abortion supporters to use freedom of speech to try and imprison speech. None of us should be surprised. When you're getting away with murder every other day of the week, pushing the envelope of reason is just par for the course.
Way to go, Russ! Keep up the good work you do for women and families!
I just want to extend some thoughts from yesterday's post on the inability to heal in this life. When I say the thing about Jesus... I know He has the power to heal us, the power to do anything. BUT He had the power to heal me of my illness and save my child's life, and He didn't choose to do that. So I know from personal experience that wanting God to do something has no ultimate bearing on what He will or will not do.
After working in a funeral home for a few years, I saw grieving mothers that would tear your heart out. Some of them were Christians. I think that actually complicated the death for them in a way that secular moms didn't have to deal with. There wasn't the same sense of betrayal in those subscribing to chaos. Of course, the secular folks had no Author to lean on and no hope for reunion in the future. If I'm wrong, may God correct me, but I think that, in this life, merely wanting Jesus to heal you isn't going to do the trick. I suspect a lot of women have already experienced a variation of "healing" simply because they convinced themselves that abortion was no big deal.
I have a friend who lost three children in abortions. When she first told me, I asked her how she was coping. She was confused by the question. It had been years, and her attitude seemed to be: "What's there to cope with?" I have to admit, I was kind of disturbed/alienated, but I chalked our difference of emotion and perception to the difference in our pregnancy situations. Later she couldn't say if she personally regretted losing the children, but she wanted to tell her story at the Silent No More expose because of her religious conviction. When someone there handed her a rose she immediately dissolved into desperate tears and muttered to me in an unexpected panic, "I haven't dealt with it, I haven't dealt with it. I never have!" All these years she just stuffed it.
Now this is where I'm going to really anger some of my own people... but if some women can convince themselves that the most monumental deal in their entire lives was no big deal at all, then what is to stop someone from doing the same thing with Jesus? I mean, He's JESUS, yes. But is it logical to expect that Jesus work to heal every mother's heart of a child lost to abortion when He doesn't work that way with anything else on earth? On this plane, is there some sort of 100% malady-healing rate that I don't know about? Or in terms of Jesus, is there a higher rate of post-abortion healing than there is cancer healing? Is healing moms of aborted children His exceptional cause? I mean, it just doesn't make sense.
The reader may not agree, but I think a lot of people actually use Christ as they use any other coping mechanism. This doesn't mean that I don't believe in Christ, because I absolutely do. This doesn't mean that I believe Christ isn't omnipotent, because He absolutely is. It doesn't even mean that I don't believe that some can experience miraculous healing from God, because they do. What I contend is that some people don't heal from a broken heart caused by the gruesome death of someone they love.
When Gramma and Grampa (see: Mom and Dad) were dying of cancer one right after the other, I never asked for their healing and they both croaked like a couple of gigged frogs. I sometimes wondered if I had not asked and therefore not received. So when I was pregnant, I was a human "rosary". I'm not Catholic. I only mean to say that I prayed endlessly for hours a day for months. My prayers were desperate; my soul cried out in anguish. My pleas of desperation, in a way, remind me of my prayers today. But guess what. He didn't save my child or fix my pathetic body then, and He is not doing it now. I am not healed of the physical impairment that happened as a result of the abortion, anymore than I am healed of the emotional result: a heart that breaks for a child who was slaughtered like a barnyard animal. I still have the disease that was NOT the result of any choice I made. My body is defective. My heart is working just fine.
Although I don't subscribe to Nye's fetal pain transference theory, he is right about what could very potentially be a nascent child's experience during abortion. Like many of the surviving relatives of the 9/11 victims, I haven't neglected to wonder what the final moments of my loved one's life entailed. It is agonizing. What's so confusing? Do the math: dead, murdered baby=brokenhearted mom.
I don't ache because I think I should; the ache is naturally, unconsciously present. It doesn't go away for wanting it to. God has instilled the species with the nature to continue. Acting against that nature by destroying our young naturally results in a deep conflict.
If I cut off my hand, the skin will eventually scar and grow over the stump, but I will never have a hand again. I will not be able to undertake the activities that absolutely require two hands no matter how crafty I get at using my feet or how much I want to (or how much faith I have in God). Some things are a done deal. If God had wanted it to be otherwise, humans would regenerate appendages like seastars; little babies would come crawling out of bell jars. They don't.
So while I deeply believe that Jesus can comfort us and even heals some of us, on this earth, He doesn't remove the consequences of being human or the aftermath of the choices we make. Let me break it down Barney style for those who still insist I am rejecting Christ:
The consequence of being human is that at some point my body may get sick. The consequence of aborting a child I value is the death of a child I value. The consequence of the death of a child I value is grief over the child's experience and my own experience of the rest of my life without the child. That hurts. That is the reality, and on this earth, God has not taken my consequences away.
A plea to the group of people I sincerely love and most identify with: "pro-lifers"...
Pray for my living child's immunity from the experience of being raised by the grieving mother of his aborted sibling. Pray for my comfort if you must. But stop demanding that I heal. Stop invalidating my relationship with Christ if I don't respond in an expected way. Stop trying to be comfortable at my expense. Just throw your arm around me and let the way abortion took my child suck as badly as it does. Never lend any credibility to the myth that abortion isn't as massively negative as it really is "because God forgives and makes everything all better." If that's the way it worked down here, there would be no SICLE Cell.
When I was pregnant with Tennessee every conscious moment was physically unbearable. There were fleeting moments of lying very still, breathing thinly, and thinking "I can do this." But naturally the vomit would come roaring out for the 6th or so 15-minute puke of the day and I would only feel worse afterwards. I begged for sleep, for death, for an end, any end as long as the suffering would cease.
Emotionally I can still relate as I'm yet in something of a crisis 6 years later. Every day I wake up missing a child who should be here. Abortion is my morning cup of coffee, and flashback suppression is my sugar lump. Another day... the battle of "living with it".
I must confess I don't believe in "post-abortion healing". I know every good "pro-lifer" just loves the idea, and my non-conformist behavior sparks the complete ire of the group I most identify with. I can't help it.
My husband and I expected a baby just like every other happy married couple who feels they have won the lottery by getting pregnant without even trying. We were over the moon when we found out. We held a dinner party for the family. Everyone was ecstatic. The pregnancy went horribly wrong.
Severe debilitating illness and medical neglect literally beat the life out of me. My husband and I took a 15-week-old child we loved to an abortion clinic and had our child vivesected and disposed of like garbage. The biology of HG is such that the instant the child was removed I was physically healed. I was no longer preoccupied with a shockingly brutal illness, and I was able to return my focus to my child. But oopsie, I had left him/her in a twisted wet mess at the bottom of an abortionist's bell jar. How, for the love of God, HOW does anyone heal from that?
I know a woman who lost a 16-year-old son the summer before I lost my child. He stopped at a stop sign and some kids shot him to death in exchange for a joyride in his truck. No one ever pestered this woman to "heal". No one ever suggested that if Jesus wasn't doing it for her she was rejecting His sacrifice. Everyone understood that she was a mother who had lost a child in a very disturbing manner. If she had to flip out a little, so be it; people indulged her. They didn't push her into their little mold and try to force her to be what they wanted her to be: all better. I'll be the first to admit that her grief was not trouble-free.
Perhaps people didn't really understand. Perhaps they had their own time table for what they believed was an appropriate, overt mourning period, but no one ever suggested that her heart would or even should heal. It was broken because her child was gone. No one argued. They could just imagine the faint outline of the reality of such a loss: for the rest of her life she would have to do without her son's smile, his voice... she would never know what kind of man he would have been or what kind of father. She would never attend his wedding or the birthdays of his children. For these two, time ceased to pass. Futures were gone. This was heavy. This was what no one wants. And no one ever deigned to suggest that believing in Jesus would, in this life, heal such a profound and agonizing loss.
I realize the SICLE is different in that it is asked for. I suppose this is why people feel it is my duty to heal from my child's sanguine death. I've done nearly everything I can to please the concerned masses (and entertain myself). I started seeing a shrink when my "pro-choice" peers suggested there was something wrong with me because "abortion only makes you feel better". I started taking medication when my husband said he couldn't take my emotional state anymore. I started going through "post-abortion" counseling programs when the "pro-lifers" suggested God would make it all better if I would just trust in Him and "give" my situation to Him. I did the programs, I even hoped, but I knew better.
God doesn't heal you just because you're hurting and you ask Him to. He's got His own plans. Two dead parents and 2 dead children in my 20's taught me that He does what He wants to do, when He wants to do it, how He wants to do it, and you'd better just buck up. Rest assured, I know He forgives me and He helps me find the strength to deal with my choice to slay my child. I know He loves me and is my ally in the daily battle of pressing on. But living with a square stone that rolls around so long and so violently in your heart that it eventually wears its edges away is not really my idea of healing, and that's what this is, you know... crying until the tears refuse to fall, screaming until the vocal chords refuse to sound, beating your fist until your hand is worn away, feeling until you can't feel anymore, living with it... losing Tennessee.
"Healing"? No. Destroying my child in a second trimester abortion (the day after I felt him/her move for the first time) was the start of an emotional cancer that will eat at me for the rest of my life. It's just the nature of the beast. It's part of a contract I signed in blood and paid for with the most precious gift there is: life.
I don't like the way the media is reporting the recent legislation efforts regarding the Partial Birth Abortion (PBA) Ban. I've blogged about media bias, and it's understood that the majority of the media supports abortion, but it still never ceases to really gripe me when I'm faced with the wildly biased news reports. It really burns me up. The first one I read (on AOL) this morning steamed me, but I wasn't going to blog about it. The second article, on MSNBC.com, was more of the same, and now I'm frustrated enough to comment.
The lead-in on the second news blurb says "Abortion foes are poised to pass a ban on PBA." The article is entitled "Chipping Away At Roe" and the term "PBA" is described as a "politically potent catchphrase". This piece, like the first one I read, seems to be less about PBA and more about anti-abortion advocates inventing a name for what abortionists describe as a "D&X".
No one knows what a D&X is any more than they know what RU486 is, but mention "PBA" or "the abortion pill" and that's something people can visualize and recall. Abortion advocates know this, and that is why they have invented the term "abortion pill" to describe RU486. They call it the "abortion pill" because it's is a pill that aborts a baby. To my knowledge, no one in the media has criticized the abortion movement for coming up with the layman's term. But flip the coin; describe an abortion in which a baby is partially born as a "partial birth abortion" and you're going to be criticized for making things up with the sole purpose of antagonizing everyone with your politically inflammatory propaganda. It seems that inventing accurate, though technically unrecognized, terminology is A-OK as long as you are using the terms to support and sell abortion. GIVE ME A BREAK!
Debra Rosenberg, author of the second offensive article, says there were "only" 2,200 children destroyed in the PBA method in the year 2000 and suggests that abortion opponents are lying (or "having credibility problems") when they claim that the procedure has been used for frivolous reasons up until the final weeks of pregnancy. She doesn't tell the reader about the abortionist who uses PBA up until the 40th week of pregnancy and admits to performing 9 PBAs due to fetal cleft lip ("hairlip"). Instead she notes that "41 states have laws restricting later abortions to cases where the woman's health or life is at stake". She doesn't mention that a "health" exception can be: "I'm breaking up with my boyfriend and having his baby would cause me emotional pain at this point." She makes the point that "[PBA] is often used on healthy women with healthy fetuses from 18-24 weeks."
Rosenberg was particularly biased when she talked about the Ohio Right To Life lobbyist who moved lawmakers to tears with a description of the PBA procedure. Instead of exploring the reason some lawmakers were reduced to tears by a description of a certain type of abortion, she focuses on the lobbyist. Rosenberg insists, "She knew she had a 'hot issue'." (Time and again it is clear that the focus of the abortion advocate isn't on women, children and families or humanity at all; instead the focus is on one-upping the opponent and winning the argument.)
Later Rosenberg admits that the issue was "hot" enough that "even abortion supporters signed on." Yet let me remind you of the article's lead in: "Abortion foes are poised to pass a ban on partial-birth abortion." To you and I the bias is obvious and tiresome. To a different (and vast) population it's yet another accepted vilification of those pesky "pro-lifers" who just want to inflame everything and refuse to mind their own [expletive] business! The life advocate doesn't like to acknowledge how unbelievably effective the media has been in its anti-anti-abortion campaign, but their endeavors have been devastating.
By exploiting a few serious nutbags, they've effectively painted those who oppose abortion as a bunch of raving lunatics whose thoughts, ideas and informative efforts are not to be entertained. Making those who are anti-abortion "off limits" helps to ensure that the reality of abortion will not be exposed. Before the facts unfold they nip truth in the bud. In addition to reducing the population, "pro-choice" media bias limits positive options for women and therefore actually chips away at a woman's choice.
I don't want to sit and spill my guts today, so I'm going to do the lazy thing and post a speech I wrote for an anti-abortion event a year or two ago. I sent a copy of it to the jail that housed the abortionist who killed my child, but predictably, I never heard back from him. And of course he went right back to victimizing women, children and families just as soon as his fat little sausage fingers were released and could freely grasp a sharp curette again.
If you've been punishing yourself by following along with this blog, you will recognize a lot of the details. There is a pinch of clarification here and there, so it might be worth the read.
"Like so many in today's society, I knew my baby was a human being, but I still went through with the abortion. Such revalation may seem shocking to many who oppose abortion, but let me tell you how I came to commit such a rueful act.
I suffer from a severe form of a rare pregnancy-related disease called hyperemesis gravidarum (HG). This is not morning sickness. It is like being allergic to your baby. The symptoms are akin to going through chemotherapy while simultaneously suffering from food poisoning (24 hours a day)on an endlessly rocking boat for months. When medically neglected, it's no surprise that some women die. It should never get to that point, but sorrowfully, it continues to happen because some physicians refuse to properly care for their female patients.
When I was first diagnosed, I was already in a physical crisis. My husband and I knew nothing about the disease, and it was difficult to be an advocate for myself and our welcomed child. My doctor, who, unbeknownst to me, was having a mental breakdown at the time, did not give me needed information, accurate information or apply much merit to the amount of suffering my disease inflicted. She allowed me to lose over 14% of my total body weight without any intervention other than medication that I was allergic to. She and the other female doctors in her practice did not put me in the hospital or provide the treatments that were so necessary to manage the utterly debilitating symptoms of HG. At the time, I was led to believe that there were no treatments available that would help me. By the fourth month of my pregnancy I was jaundiced (from liver dysfunction), malnourished and severely dehydrated. I was so physically depleted that I began to have mild hallucinations, which I found very disturbing. I begged to be put in the hospital for at least 48 hours but was told by one of my doctors, "This is not a hotel." I threatened that she was leaving me no choice but to abort the child that I loved and wanted; I thought that would elicit some action. She wanted to know two things: who would perform the abortion and when could I come in for my post-abortion exam. I felt defeated.
I went to the emergency room demanding to be admitted. They put me in room 4, and a psychiatric nurse followed. I explained to her that I was so sick that I was ready to abort a baby that I loved and wanted if I didn't get some help. Her response was to force me to admit myself to a psychiatric hospital down the street. I knew the place; it's a lock-in mental facility that houses the people police find ranting naked on the streets at night. She told me if I didn't go, she'd have the police take me against my will. Though my husband and I were terrified, we went but not before a passing physician, shocked by my appearance, prescribed a quick IV for the "obviously dehydrated girl in room 4".
At the mental facility, the intake person took one look at my yellow body, gaunt expression, bloody, vomit splattered pajamas and inability to walk with a normal gait and told me I needed to be admitted to a medical hospital because I was sick, not crazy. When he realized we had just come from there, he told me that perhaps I should take care of myself and that my current physical condition might be my baby's way of saying s/he didn't really want to be born. I didn't agree with his personal philosophy, but I couldn't argue about a solution anymore. I couldn't stand the suffering any longer, my husband was scared I was going to die, and no one would help us. The mental facility was the last straw. Our faith died that day, and our child would soon follow.
Over the years I have had countless occasions to reflect on the sorrowful January night that we lost our first, anticipated child in a second trimester abortion. When I am not jaundiced and dehydrated to the point of hallucination, it is hard to fathom how I could have arrived at such a conclusion. There were positive solutions that I could have employed, but for the life in me, I couldn't see them at the time. Why was my personal life-ethic not stronger? I take full responsibility for my actions that night, but I have come up with some troubling truths about myself and who I was prior to the event. The thing that makes these revelations so troubling is not merely that they involve me but that they apply to so many in our society today.
Up until the point of my own ordeal, I had been "pro-choice" and staunchly so. I agreed with the popular, flawed logic that abortion was never something I would personally be involved in, but it was fine if other people wanted to stoop to such a level. I attended rallies that promoted abortion, donned a clever sounding abortion supporting bumper sticker on my car, and successfully ducked the "disgusting" Center for Bio-Ethical Reform's GAP project at Florida State University. (How often I wish I had not avoided the display.) The shocker is, I did know that gestating children were living human beings. (Why do you think I avoided the display?)
I knew that gestating children were real and very precious, otherwise I would not have made the delineation that abortion was personally unacceptable. I knew that it was not in my heart, that I was not capable of such a thing and, as an elementary school teacher, I knew I loved children and would never want harm to come to them. But the fact remains, I supported abortion. I am still perplexed that I could be so insensitive and vain, because it is out of character for me. If you had asked me if it were acceptable for a neighbor to choose to break her toddler's arm to alleviate the stress of a crisis, of course I would have said no and been shocked and offended at the mention of such a ridiculous scenario. But ask me about abortion and I would have uttered a continuous stream of abortion advocating rhetoric about "choice" and "rights" and the blood-curdling devolution of the coat hanger abortion. All of it obscenely flawed, all of it pathetically unresearched, all of it blindly accepted hook, line and sinker. Hear me when I reveal that ultimately, I knew what abortion did to children but somehow didn't care. It is so unlike me, so not who I thought I was. How could I ever have advocated something as unjust and cruel as abortion? How can those who identify themselves as Christians, and who are otherwise concerned and loving people, support such malice and victimization?
In high school we learned about slavery. Our history texts described unbelievable events in which people with dark skin were not regarded as people at all but as property to be bought and sold and abused as a slave owner determined. I remember absolutely balking at the idea that any human being could have before them the evidence of arms, legs and crying eyes and yet determine the person a property with no individual rights. For perpetuating such a unethical, hateful idea as slavery, I judged the people of a bygone era with an ease unsurpassed. Worm-eaten hearts beat in the chests of those archaic devils, and I believed that deep down inside they knew just exactly what they were doing but ignored their consciences for the sake of political correctness and convenience. After all, dissenters were alienated, and a plantation full of cheap labor could profit a slave owner with the kind of financial life he wanted for himself and his family or even deliver him from a crisis. Even in the 11th grade, I had enough moral sense to recognize malevolence when I was exposed to it, yet all the while I suffered the same type of clueless, crippled ethic. And my abortion advocating beliefs didn't disenfranchise just anyone, no: my beliefs targeted little children. (God help me, my virgin vote was cast for Clinton.) Words cannot express how horrified I am by my previous internal composition. To say that my experience has been humbling is a gross understatement.
Now that I am on the other side, I can see how senseless I was and how unintentionally but truly destructive. It's no consolation, but I thought I was helping people. In reality, I was killing them with my "kindness". This is particularly hard to swallow, because I have always imagined that I was not gullible. I have also always deemed myself innocuous and tender. But something was insidious enough to burrow its way under the skin of my consciousness and into my heart. It had to be a mixture of my own fallibility and the politically correct "choice" propaganda that is spoon-fed to those of us born around the time of the legalization of abortion (and after). For what it's worth, I am deeply ashamed of myself and terribly sorry for the part I played in so many deaths including the death of my own child. It is certainly fitting that it happened to me, this unfathomable loss. But it is not fitting that it happened to my child who had no voice or legal right to choose his or her own destiny. It is beyond my capability to resolve. It is something I will simply have to find a way to live with.
I submit that abortion is the most important issue of our time. I can only hope that one day a young girl in the 11th grade reads about, and judges with an ease unsurpassed, the barbaric people of a bygone era... people like me who somehow convinced themselves that it was OK to take the life of a growing human child."
(This blog entry has been footnoted as a hyperlink here by miffed abortion supporter Joyce Arthur, who claims that "pro-abortion" violence is a myth. You can read quite an interesting exchange between she and I at the blog entry here. I'm sure you will find her feminist compassion simply enthralling. Make certain you have a hanky handy as her emotional charity is sure to bring a tear to your eye.)
This is the last in a series of three exposes on the criminal activities of those who support and/or perform abortion. This information is taken practically verbatim from the Abortion Crime Report. Today's entry has mostly to do with the safety of abortion. You will not have to strain to notice the hypocracy of the law in many instances. This is a long one but as interesting as everything else the Crime Report has to say. So without further adieu, on to extolling the "virtues" of a woman's right to choose a "safe" and legal abortion...
April 1973 - Abortionist Xavier Hall Ramirez initiated a third-trimester saline abortion at Greater Bakersfield Hospital. The patient expelled a living 4.5 pound child. Nurses called Ramirez who ordered them to discontinue oxygen to the baby, but another doctor countermanded this order and the infant survived to be adopted. Abortionist Ramirez was indicted for solicitation to commit murder.
1989 - Abortionist Milos Klvana was sentenced to 53 years in prison after being found guilty of the mass murder of eight newborn babies and the still birth of another infant.
Harvey Karman is the developer of the menstrual extraction technique. His three-page police record includes an arrest for murder in the death of an abortion client and a prison term for illegal abortion and grand theft. One of his other abortion arrests was in connection with a West Los Angeles clinic where he was associated with abortionist John Gwynne. Gwynne has since been convicted of the murder of his nineteen-year-old girlfriend.
1994 - Abortionist Alicia Ruiz Hanna was convicted of second-degree murder after Angela Sanchez, a 27-year-old mother of four, died at Hanna's Santa Ana abortion facility. Hanna owned and operated the abortion business under the license of another abortionist (an actual physician) who rarely visited the two-room facility. Prosecuters asserted that Hanna posed as a doctor, performing up to 20 abortions with no doctor present. Sanchez suffered seizures after Hanna injected her with an unknown drug; Hanna later prevented a receptionist from calling 911. Sanchez had told family members only that she was getting a checkup. Two of her children sat in the waiting room for hours after she died. Later, they saw Hanna trying to stuff their mother's body into the trunk of a car in order to dump her body across the border in Tijuana, Mexico. Hanna told them that Angela had just collapsed after being attacked by an unidentified man who had run away, but the medical examiner determined that Angela had been dead for at least 6 hours at that point. Apparently legal abortion didn't stop illegal abortion.
Abortionist Bruce Steir was charged with murder after state regulators determined that he punctured Ms. Hamptlon's uterus during an abortion and then ignored the danger he knew he'd created. He knew he'd perforated the uterus because he pulled out bowel. Instead of rushing her to the emergency room, he sent her home with her mother where she died leaving behind a three-year-old son. Steir was already on medical probation at the time of the death because of his previous botched abortions which included uterine perforations. One of the incidents involved a case where surgeons had to remove a fetal skull found protruding through a huge tear in a patient's uterus. Showing their true colors, abortion supporters raised money for Steir's defense on the Internet, encouraged their friends to put pressure on elected officials and the California Medical Board, and urged the prosecutor to drop the charges. NOW, NARAL, NAF, and Refuse and Resist were involved in arguing against filing any charges against Steir at all. Naturally they blamed the murder charge on pro-lifers, claiming the charges were "trumped-up" and brought for "political" reasons. And despite Steir's own admission, the groups claimed that the complications he caused during the abortion were "undetected". The Hamptlon family's attorney said, "I don't understand why the pro-choice people want to rally around the cause of a shoddy physician. If I were in their shoes I would do as much as possible to distance myself from the likes of Steir... rather than having him be the poster boy for my cause."
In another case of legal abortion "preventing the deaths of women", Alfred E. Smith was found guilty of second-degre murder in the death of his ex-girlfriend Denna Moody. Smith killed Moody in April 1997 because she refused to abort their gestating child. The jury heard evidence that Moody had been pregnant by Smith before and that he had pressured her to abort the baby. This time she absolutely refused, and her charred body was found in her burned car near a Van Nuys Amtrak station the next morning. "What, me guilty?"
March 2, 1977 - Abortionist William Waddill, Jr. performed a third-trimester saline abortion and delivered a live, viable baby girl whom he then strangled to death. This was the second infanticide charge for Waddill.
Nurse witnesses stated that an abortionist from San Vicente Hospital, California aborted a 7-month-old child who lived. Some time later he noticed that the infant was still moving, so he drowned and poisoned the baby in a vat of formaldehyde.
Dec. 19, 1992 - Abortionist Leo Kenneally botched an abortion on Estella Gonzales at the HER abortion facility. She collapsed after leaving the building and was rushed to an emergency room for surgery to correct a lacerated uterus and intestines. Estella reported that while she was hospitalized clinic employees visited her and offered her $10,000 and later $5,000 and a Cadillac. HER's attorney called this a "humanitarian gesture". Kenneally had already been charged with negligence by the medical board in the 1986 death of Donna Heim following an abortion. The same year he performed an abortion on Liliana Cortez, who went into cardiac arrest. 40 minutes later paramedics arrived on the scene and transported her to a hospital where she died five days later. Her death was ruled a "therapeutic misadventure". Keneally's negligence resulted in several deaths and injuries and his medical license was suspended several times. However, despite finding Kenneally guilty of incompetence and negligence, the California Medical Board voted to allow him to keep his medical license because he worked in an "underserved" neighborhood.
Abortionist Steven N. Pine killed Yvonne Tanner (1984) and Belinda Ann Byrd (1987) at Inglewood Women's Hospital (abortion facility). Belinda's mother, Mattie Byrd, mourned her dead daughter Belinda in a letter to a friend: "I cry every day when I think of how horrible her death was. She was slashed by them and then she bled to death... Where is [the abortionist] now? Has he been stopped? Has anything happened to him because of what he did to my Belinda? ... People tell me nothing has happened, that nothing ever happens to white abortionists who leave young black women dead." Belinda Byrd was Pine's 74th abortion of the day. Several other women reported malpractice and injury at Pine's abortion facility. Among them are: Sandra Applegate, Vicky Rabourn, Betty Matthews, Tracy M. Medley, Susan Lee Minyo, Shanti Friend, Leslie M. Thompson, Kathryn Ann Hummell, Juana Nunez, Debra Weaver and Mary Younal. In 1988 the health authorities closed down the facility for several health code violations including: the use of operating tables "soiled by the fresh blood of previous patients", abortionists signing discharge orders for patients they hadn't examined, failure to monitor patients' vital signs, falsification of and failure to complete medical records, administering a fixed amount of anesthesia to patients of all weights, rushing patients through recovery, and killing at least 5 women. The judge said: "These are obviously life-threatening infractions, not technical violations. Obviously people's lives are at risk." State Deputy Attorney complained that the "hospital" had made "empty promises" in the past to correct violations: "They correct the violations on paper, but when we walk out the door they go back to their [dangerous] practices." 3 days later the abortion facility found their way around the law and reopened as the West Coast Women's Medical Group. The most outspoken critic of the investigation of the health care violations at the facility was a female state senator (Diane Watson) who received two very large campaign contributions from the facility. Big shock there.
Abortionist Kenneth L. Wright was a defendant in lawsuits re: the abortion deaths of 17-year-old Laniece Dorsey and Josephina Garcia. He was also a defendant in at least nine other malpractice suits.
Joyce Ortenzio developed an infection and died on June 8, 1988 after a laminaria insertion by abortionist Marmet, who had over a dozen other malpractice suits lodged against him.
Abortionist Lawson A. Akpulonu had his medical license suspended after charges were filed by former patients that he raped them after performing abortions on them.
Abortionist Lawrence Reich was charged with 28 counts of battery, attempted battery, sexual misconduct, prescribing drugs without a license, coercion and impersonating a doctor. Reich sexually assaulted two of his abortion patients, forcing them to have oral sex with him. Another patient claimed that he raped her and botched her abortion. Several court testimonies claimed that Reich sexually abused at least six of his patients and botched operations on at least four others.
Sept. 1993 - abortion proponent and lawyer David Lusskin tried to force his girlfriend Kim Mascola to abort their twins. She refused, so he hired a hit man to use a baseball bat to bash her in the stomach to make sure the babies were dead before bludgeoning her to death as well.
Jan. 1989 - Abortionist Ivan C. Namihas impregnated one of his patients and performed an after-hours abortion on her without adequate equipment or personnel. He also repeatedly raped his half-sister over a period of six years and carried out several D&C procedures on her himself. Over 100 patients and former patients reported allegations of medical misconduct or sexual abuse at the hands of Namihas. These included raping a patient with a foreign object. The rest of the report on Namihas is so long and so sexually explicit and vulgar that I simply refuse to print it. If you want to read the obscene details you will have to get the Abortion Crime Report.
Abortionist Lawrence Alozie Akpulonu was arrested for committing perjury on government documents, given probation for brandishing a loaded handgun at pro-lifers and threatening their lives, accused of raping a patient, etc.
Jan. 7, 1980 - Abortionist Christopher Dotson took it upon himself to abort 17-year-old Andrea Monique Ball's child without even telling her she was pregnant. He was also charged in 1976 with paying development commissioners $40,000 to vote in favor of the city of Compton purchasing a property from Compton Penny Venture for $701,408 HUD money.
Abortionist Gordon Goei had performed abortions for years in facilities throughout the Southern California region before authorities were called to a Northridge hospital where a 42-year-old woman was bleeding profusely after Goei had aborted her child. They investigated the facility and found her 26-week-old dead child in a trash bag. Goei was practicing despite a suspended license and was charged with performing an illegal abortion.
Abortionist Edward Allred attempted to bury a woman who died after an abortion without first turning the body over to the county coroner.
1992 - Joseph Durante was put on probation for failing to perform a pelvic exam or an ultrasound to determine the age of a gestating child before proceeding with the abortion. The 17-year-old patient told Durante the pregnancy was 8-12 weeks along, but the baby was actually 6.5 months old.
Dec. 8, 1994 - Abortionist Suresh Gandotra killed Magdalena Orteg Rodrigues in a botched abortion at the El Norte Clinica Medica. Medical authorities came under fire in the case because a file indicated that Gandotra had so seriously injured a woman in an abortion 4 years earlier that an examining physician described her anatomy as "difficult to identify".
Aug. 26, 1987 - Abortionist Nicholas Braemer botched an abortion when, while aborting a viable baby, he managed only to chop off one of the baby's arms. The mother miscarried the dead child the next day and could see that one arm was missing.
Abortionist Philip Rand had a number of malpractice lawsuits filed against him. In one of the suits by 17-year-old Shirley Bellamy, the abortionist had refused to treat her for bleeding during her pregnancy. Rand "yelled and screamed" that she was going to lose the baby anyway, so she should get out of his office; Bellamy requested treatment in a hospital to try to save her unborn baby, but Rand refused stating that he didn't run a taxi service. When Bellamy experienced a sudden gush of blood, Rand refused to allow one of his nurses to take her to a nearby hospital. She suffered premature birth and the subsequent death of daughter Sherelee Natai Allen.
Abortionist Anthony J. Lund raped a patient. The report details the sexual abuse of two other patients.
And on and on and on.
We will never know how "safe" legal abortion is, because reporting isn't required and because reports, when made, are by those performing the abortions. Obviously, it would be foolish to expect any sort of honesty from this unethical lot. Also to consider are the delayed risks of abortion, such as breast cancer, etc. The only thing that is absolutely certain is that abortion is an unnecessary health risk in all cases (outside of saving the mother's life), and anyone who chooses it is playing Russian Roulette with their own life.
For a list of names of women who have been killed by "safe" and legal abortion, visit the Blackmun Wall. There are several panels of this wall. Click on the names for individual details.
My husband used to have a bumper sticker on his car that said: "Every Abortion Takes A Human Life." I say "used to have" because someone recently took it upon him/herself to remove it. Another friend is having a hard time keeping anti-abortion bumper stickers on her car because the folks who believe a woman should have a right to do what she wants with "her body" apparently don't feel she has the right to do what she wants with her van. As for me, I bought a Choose Life tag and outfoxed them all... I thought.
Just this week an abortion supporter vandalized my car. Actually, that's not entirely true. The car itself wasn't touched... just the tag. We came out of the store and found the back bumper dripping, because someone launched their supersized coke into it. In all the years I displayed my face-slapping abortion supporting bumper sticker, I never had an incident. It's only now that I sport the most innocuous message of peace that I get trouble. I've been on both sides and I have discovered that on several occasions those who believe in abortion lack self control and have consistently broken the law by vandalizing and stealing personal property, whereas those who oppose abortion were always respectful of my rights even when they didn't agree with me in the least. It's telling.
While the media is busy inundating the public with images of a very few "violent pro-lifers", they rarely ever expose the fact that abortion supporters are holding their own in the competition for nuttiest fruitcake.
From the Abortion Crime Report (and pretty much verbatim at that): On March 28, 1981, at the Family Planning Associates Medical Group abortion facility, four abortion supporters attacked abortion opponents who were exercising their right to assemble and protest. The abortion supporters wrenched materials away and proceeded to beat abortion opponents with their own signs.
In March of 1989 abortion supporters defaced an abortion opposing church with red paint, red coat hangers and posters accusing the church of "crimes against women".
March of '89 was a busy month for abortion supporters as three more of them were arrested after igniting an incendiary device in a church packed with pro-life activists. Police also found concussion grenades beneath the speaking platform where abortion opponents were to speak. If these had been detonated, the speakers would have been killed or gravely injured. Roughly 2,500 people were present.
A member of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT-UP) rammed abortion opponent Bill Soucie's car with a Chevy Blazer and forced him into oncoming traffic. The criminal fled to Canada to avoid prosecution.
Mark Hardie, a reporter for the student newspaper at the University of California, was forced to resign and was under police protection after receiving death threats for his conservative views. One abortion supporter said on a radio show: "He's gonna be a victim. I'm waiting outside. I swear to God I'm gonna kill his family."
Abortion supporting activist Frank Mendiola was arrested for calling in phony bomb threats to abortion facilities and the homes of abortionists in order, as he said, "to have you people, the media, come down with a harder line on those people who are harassing the clinics." He even called in three bomb threats to his own house. For years Mendiola had told heartbreaking stories of how his twin sister had died of a botched illegal abortion until investigators found that he was lying and never even had a sister.
On April 18, 1992, abortion supporter Julie Schollenberger of the Clinic Defense Alliance was arrested for sexual assault against a female participant of Operation Rescue.
On July 25, 1992, at a Christian prayer vigil, abortion supporters dressed as the Virgin Mary carried a six-foot cross in the shape of a penis, beat on drums, shouted obscenities, tore pages out of Bibles, threw them into the faces of the pastors and praying crowd, and called nuns "lesbians" before wheeling out a grill and burning a stack of Bibles on it. They were charged with setting an illegal fire.
On April 14, 1990, at the Family Planning Associates abortion facility, several abortion supporters physically assaulted abortion opponents.
In March 1991, a member of ACT-UP severely bit abortion opponent Chris Keys twice.
In February 1994, an ACT-UP member repeatedly kicked Terri Palmquist at the La Mujer abortion facility.
In March 1989, an abortion supporting police officer dragged an anti-abortion demonstrator behind a wall so he could not be seen as he savagely beat the protestor who had never resisted.
On July 9, 1990 the Catholic Church in Torrance, California was sprayed with obscene graffiti. Outside the church vandals left a wooden cross festooned with used condoms and a mattress stuffed with animal intestines. Someone claiming to be a member of "Artists Against Religious Oppression" called the next day and warned the church to "stay out of politics and stop its oppression of women..."
In August 1991, abortion supporters sprayed butyric acid on a church and spray-painted it with obscene slogans that supported abortion.
Abortion supporters defaced the Sherman Oaks Church with obscene graffiti several times in 1989.
During a speech by Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahoney, a bottle of butyric acid broke in an abortion supporter's hand. He was arrested and charged with harassment.
On June 29, 1991 two abortion supporters exposed their bare breasts to ant-abortion demonstrators while two others removed their pants.
On July 7, 1994 an abortion supporter was arrested for stalking an abortion opponent.
In June of 1993, at the Redding Feminist Women's Health Center, an abortion supporter tried to run down abortion opponents Debbi McCallister and Walt Runyon with his truck. In July of the same year an abortion supporter wrestled Ron Walters' picket sign away and beat him with it at the same facility. In August 1993 one of the facility workers threw rocks at abortion opponent Steven McCallister. On September 24, 1993 abortionist Carl Serratt and others kicked, punched and jumped on abortion opponent Richard C. Rudolph after stealing his picket sign. On December 2, 1993, an abortion supporter soaked abortion opponent Steven McCallister and his video camera with a garden hose. All of this happened at the same abortion facility.
In November 1992, abortion supporters set fire to a church dumpster next to an anti-abortion church.
In 1998 two female abortion supporters attacked a GAP (Genocide Awareness Project) picture display with knives. The previous summer the display was rammed by an abortion supporter's car.
On July 7, 1994, police arrested an abortion supporter for assaulting an abortion opponent at the Sacramento Feminist Women's Health Center.
In March of 1989 abortion supporters wearing heavy steel-toed boots attempted to kill a disabled abortion opponent by kicking him repeatedly in the head even after they had rendered him unconscious.
On February 26, 1982 abortion supporters set fire to the office of California Right to Life. Fire officials ruled that the incident was arson partly because the arsonist stole the organization's membership lists.
In 1989 abortion supporters shoved abortion opponents and sprayed them with a bottle of urine.
And on and on and on...
However, thanks in part to the Internet, anyone who cares to do the research will be able to determine the group that has been involved in the largest infringement on individual rights and certainly the most violence.