Two items in the news lately have reminded people that killing babies is a crime and a tragedy that affects us all. In one case, a Philadelphia doctor, Kermit Gosnell, was convicted of murder for running a clinic that specialized in aborting babies as late as 30 weeks of gestation; that’s more than 7 months! Many of these babies were born alive – moving, breathing and even crying. In those cases, Gosnell told his employees to cut the baby’s spinal cord to kill him or her. When authorities found out, it made national headlines, and people were sickened and outraged that these living babies had been put to death.
Dr. Gosnell was not prosecuted for murdering the thousands of unborn babies he killed during his 30-year career. He was only convicted for killing the ones who managed to survive for a few minutes. Where’s the public outcry about the thousands of other babies he murdered?
Around the same time, we heard about a Cleveland man, Ariel Castro, who kidnapped three young women and kept them as sex slaves for 10 years. After they were freed, one of the women, Michelle Knight, told police that Castro had caused her to have at least five miscarriages by starving and beating her when she was pregnant. The county prosecutor is now considering charging Castro with aggravated murder for the death of her unborn babies, because Ohio has what’s called a “fetal homicide” law. Like laws in 30 other states1, this law gives prosecutors the right to charge someone with murder if they kill a baby in the womb. It’s usually applied to crimes where a pregnant woman is killed.
So Ariel Castro, who was the father of Michelle Knight’s babies, didn’t have the right to kill them, but under the law, Ms. Knight could have legally exercised her right to abort the same babies. Remember “a woman’s right to choose,” which liberals have been protecting ever since the travesty of Roe v. Wade made it legal to kill unborn babies.
Both these news stories illustrate how sick and twisted our laws have become. They protect the mother’s “right” to kill her unborn baby, but nobody else can kill it (except an abortion doctor). It’s okay to kill a baby who’s alive and kicking in the womb, but if you wait a few minutes longer until it’s officially “born,” then it’s a crime. Where’s the logic in that? More importantly, where’s the morality?
Many doctors today specialize in saving the lives of babies born prematurely, and babies born at 23 weeks have at least a 20 percent chance of survival.2 Yet it’s perfectly legal in many states, including Nevada, to kill a baby at 24 weeks.3 Only at 25 weeks does it become illegal.
Maybe these two sensational news cases will help remind the American people that an unborn baby has as much right to life as any other person. Each child is a unique, precious individual with unlimited potential. Killing a baby before it’s born is murder, whether our perverted legal system calls it that or not. In our hearts, we know it to be true, but our selfishness is making us turn away from the truth. January 2013 marked 40 years since the Roe v. Wade decision. Since that time, more than 54 million unborn babies have been legally murdered.4 We can’t bring back those innocent children, but we can resolve to stop the killing.
By Whose Authority?
For more information on my Commentary and to see some of the backup research, or if you wonder why I take the position I take, go to www.LyleBrennan.com.