The Pro-Life Gen Changes Medical Minds

By Bethany Janzen, SFLA Rocky Mountain Regional Coordinator

Cecile Richards, the president of Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion vendor, was the keynote speaker at the American Medical Association’s Annual Meeting in Denver this past weekend. And the Pro-Life Generation was there to tell her – and all the attendees – that abortion isn’t healthcare.

Sixteen courageous high school and college students, healthcare personnel, and community members sacrificed their Sunday to stand in solidarity with the human person. We respectfully spoke with and informed the medical community coming to hear Cecile Richards give her keynote address.

We also talked with several pro-life medical staff, two of which wanted to have their picture taken with our “I Am the Pro-Life Generation” signs. One lady walking into the building held up a handmade “Respect Life” sign to show her support.

We had our #PinkFleet van parked across the street, an easy visual to remind people of Bethany AMA2Planned Parenthood’s shady business practices and betrayal of women. We also held banners explaining Planned Parenthood’s Cycle of Corruption and handed out informational cards. A Registered Nurse in a white lab coat held a sign reading, “Do No Harm” along with a local anesthesiologist who proudly held another pro-life sign.

“What’s this about?” asked one medical professional.

“We believe that every life is valuable and that you should do no harm, including to the preborn,” I responded.

“I agree that abortion isn’t good, but sometimes it’s necessary,” he countered. “For the life of the mother, for example.”

“We are pro-life. That means that we want to preserve the life of as many people as possible. So if both the mother and baby will die as a result of the pregnancy continuing, as in the case of a tubal pregnancy, an early delivery is done – often at 12 weeks. Sadly, we don’t have the technology at this point for the baby to live this young. But if the mother has a different condition like cancer, an early delivery after about 24 weeks is often possible and the mom and baby can both live.”

“I’m with you,” the healthcare professional walked away saying.

But sometimes we more subtly communicated our message.

“Have a great day!” I greeted medical personnel as they bee lined into the convention center, handing them one of Students for Life’s bright pink “Planned Parenthood Project” postcards.

“No thanks,” many responded, before suddenly stopping, turning around, and saying, “Oh wait, I’ll take one.” I’m pretty sure they thought we were with Planned Parenthood but it didn’t matter because we were able to give them some good reading material and tell them what no else is saying: that abortion isn’t healthcare and that Cecile Richards runs an organization that gets over 40% of its revenue from taxpayers and still commits over 324,000 abortions per year.

But my story wouldn’t be complete without mentioning two girls who stopped to look at our banners.

Bethany AMA Cecile“I don’t like abortion, but Planned Parenthood does a lot of other great things,” one said.

After we informed them that Federally Qualified Health Centers provide holistic healthcare with all the services that Planned Parenthood does (except abortion) plus many more at no or low cost, they both said, “Let’s fund these, not Planned Parenthood!”

Despite the fact that the American Medical Association invited Cecile Richards, president of the nation’s largest abortion vendor which commits 30% of the country’s abortions every year, to speak at their annual meeting, American medical professionals don’t all agree with her. Many are pro-life.

What would a late-term abortionist say to med students? I found out.

By Michele Hendrickson, Capital Area Regional Coordinator

Last week, on February 3rd, Johns Hopkins University’s Medical Students for Choice hosted Dr. Leroy Carhart at an open invitation dinner event. Dr. Carhart is one of only a handful of late-term abortionists in the country, who by his own admission has committed 80-100K abortions, and hasn’t done a lecture in public for years.

Around 6:45PM, a crowd of 50 or so gathered inside one of Armstrong Medical Education Building’s lecture halls in preparation for Carhart’s talk.

As we all lined up to sign-in to the building’s security desk, I realized Leroy himself was just one person behind me awaiting his turn.

Chills.

The man who I’ve only read about in press releases that covered his latest medical fiasco, was now so close to me that I could determine which parts of his shirt needed to be tucked in a bit more.  (The right side)

The evening ran a bit behind while we all waited for the Chinese food delivery to arrive, although I hardly had an appetite.  My goal for the night was to fit in and glean as much information as I could.  This was a huge chance to honestly observe and learn the perspectives of late-term abortion supporters.  Here were some of the highlights:

  • Carhart reflected on his past experience with Supreme Court cases and fighting against the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban, [in the first few minutes] “In reality if you think about an abortion, there isn’t an abortion done that doesn’t remove part of the fetus before it dies, and the rest of it afterwards. So it was really, could be interpreted as a total-abortion ban. Or definitely was interpreted as a second-trimester ban.  Anything after 14 weeks.” Unless of course, you are Leroy Carhart, one of about four others in the entire country who makes a living ending the lives of babies as far along as 30+ weeks.  Babies who can feel pain or be born and survive.   He prided himself of being among the few to perform “fetal injections”, thus euthanizing the baby from the inside as a loop hole to the Partial-Birth Ban.
  • JHU student and Voice for Life member Katherine Hamlet asked Carhart his opinion on the upcoming Supreme Court case, Whole Women’s Health vs. Cole, which challenges many of the common sense requirements finally being placed on abortion facilities. Certainly someone like Leroy Carhart who has claimed the lives of young women through abortion would see the importance of running a clinic that is up to par, yes?  Not so much.

“As far as like having hospital-type requirements for the clinic, which is what they want, ya know 250 square foot surgery rooms, 6ft aisles and 6ft hallways, and it’s just ludicrous.  It’s just not needed.”

  • I often hear challenges from students such as, “no one knows when life begins” or “it’s not a baby”, yet here they all sat in awe and wonder as Carhart spoke on and on… about dead babies and the methods he uses to kill them. He described the importance of using the fetal injections because then “[the babies] were not alive after the first visit.  They were dead
  • [Beginning of the tape] He explained the Supreme Court ruling that it was “illegal to remove a fetus partly before killing the fetus, and then deliver the rest of the parts.”

About 15 minutes in, he explained how he knows a baby could never be born alive using his procedure of fetal injections because “We know the baby has been dead for multiple days.”

  • Carhart made a few confusing and contradictory statements concerning his role in the woman’s choice to have an abortion. He made a statement that he performs abortions at such late stages of gestation based on “extreme cases” and not simply due to “unplanned pregnancies”.   [About 12 minutes] “Most of us are probably results of unplanned pregnancies (laughter from the audience).  However there are pregnancies that are devastating to a woman’s plans.”

Then he changes his tune and says, “Certainly if it was an unplanned pregnancy and they come to the office I’ll take care of them.  I see my part as a provider to provide abortions to the people who have made up their mind that that’s what they need.  I will not help the patient to make that decision… I’m not going to put myself in her head and say if it’s a good idea or a bad idea.”

Then later when pressed on the issue he states, “I have to be totally convinced that they know that this is not just the option that they need, but it’s the only option that they need.”

A student continues to push, “Is that just like a gut feeling?”

Carhart responds, “I don’t know.  I hope we’ve made it a little more scientific than a gut feeling.  I can tell you I’ve rejected people who everybody else thought we should do.  And, should I do that?  I don’t know.”  — wait, what??

  • Hang in there, we’re almost to the end of the evening, and almost at the pinnacle of shocking statements. This next comment is brought to us by a student who asked, “What is your advice for those wanting to become future abortion providers?”

[About 17:20] “When you’re burned out of doing labor and delivery and OB and Gynecology and you’re 55 or so, you might come back and work in the abortion field.”  Did I just hear that correctly?  When you’re done bringing life into the world, switch it up and end some instead.

  • [About 20:30] Student Question: “I’m wondering if your clinic provides any support, mental health support, for the women who come see you.”Carhart: “We don’t – but we have referral sources.” Anyone shocked here?
  • Someone asked Carhart to explain some of the worst fetal abnormalities he has seen [around 40 minutes in]. He lists several but then defends aborting babies with Down Syndrome. He discusses how he hears from families who have a child with Downs who is doing great but says that you can’t even know that in advance so aborting babies with Downs is fine to do.

As the evening came to a close, there was one last remark Carhart gave which made everything else seem like an episode of Sesame Street.

“I believe I’m doing God’s work.”

This is not in the recording as it was an impromptu response to a question asked in a small group setting later by Andrew Guernsey, a senior at Johns Hopkins and former president of Voice for Life.  Guernsey asked if Carhart considered himself a Christian, and his response was yes.

Carhart then shared with our small group that, to him, the Bible isn’t clear on the issue of abortion.  If Jesus didn’t say anything against it exactly – then it’s all good to him.

Lastly, he offered to all the students in the room to come visit his abortion facility and see for themselves exactly what happens inside.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I’m starting to feel a little ill – and I don’t think it’s the Chinese food.

Carhart’s entire discussion is available here:

The very NEXT day after this talk, an ambulance was called to Carhart’s late-term abortion facility in Maryland, for the second time this year. More info is here on that call.