Every day across the country, scenes of stark disparity in who receives health care play out in a way that would shock most Americans. In one reality, in the neonatal intensive care unit, doctors are heroically working to save the tiniest, most fragile patients – premature babies – and their coworkers are striving to keep the new mothers stable. Meanwhile, in another room, possibly down the hall in the same hospital, or maybe down the road in the same city, a baby identical in age is left on a cold metal tray to die, struggling to live. Sometimes the child’s mother begs someone to help her baby, but it doesn’t come.
The only difference: The second baby lived through an abortion intended to end its life.
The overwhelming majority of Americans believe that a baby who survives an abortion deserves the same life-saving care and protection as any other baby born prematurely at the same age. Two Democratic governors, Laura Kelly from Kansas and Katie Hobbs from Arizona, however, evidently don’t agree. Recently, both governors vetoed bills in their states that would have protected these children from the horrors of infanticide.
It’s estimated that more than 1,700 babies survive attempted abortions yearly in the U.S., and more than 85,000 survived abortions during the Roe v. Wade era. President George W. Bush signed a law in 2003 to affirm that babies who survive abortion attempts are guaranteed full legal rights, but it didn’t require medical care after birth, which is common sense.
Abortionists still blatantly ignore the personhood of children who evade their fatal blows.
“Doctors” like Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell commit atrocious acts of inhumanity against their vulnerable “patients” for years – some even decades – while politicians and authorities turn away. In addition to killing at least two women from abortions in his filthy “house of horrors,” Gosnell is known for cutting the necks of babies delivered alive in illegal abortions at 24 weeks or later – one victim was believed to be 30 weeks gestation, one that could live if provided ethical, quality medical care. Gosnell went to prison for his crimes, but such convictions are rare, though cases like his are not.
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It is ghoulish that any governor should permit infanticide on their watch. Sadly, extremism is the rule rather than the exception in today’s Democratic Party. Remember the chilling words of Ralph Northam, former governor of Virginia? “The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue…”
When babies’ lives are viewed as worth saving, and medical professionals put in their effort, even very premature infants survive. Due to medical advancements, one-third of the children born at 23 weeks and 20% of those born at 22 weeks in the United States survive. In Germany, investing in specialized equipment and training allows doctors to save 60% of little ones born at 22 weeks gestation. More and more hospitals in the U.S. and worldwide are equipped to care for infants born at 22 weeks.
It has been documented that more than half of babies aborted by labor induction survive the labor. Seven out of 10 late-term abortionists do not routinely kill the unborn child with feticide before the abortion. Thus, it is inevitable that many infants survive late abortions only to be killed by active or passive infanticide after birth.
Seventy-seven percent of voters support legislation like the bills in Kansas and Arizona to ensure babies who survive failed abortions receive the same medical treatment as any other child their age. Voters see the importance of affirming the humanity of past, present, and future abortion survivors who deserve the same opportunities in life as they do.
Lauren Eden survived a late-term abortion that her mother, who raised her alongside her father, stopped during the process. The doctor’s orders for bed rest and care allowed Lauren’s mother to carry her for a few more weeks, which resulted in her premature birth at 28 weeks. After 53 days in the NICU, she was released with few complications.
Now she’s a mother of three who shares her story to be a voice for the voiceless. Lauren is among the hundreds of people worldwide involved with the Abortion Survivors Network, headquartered in Governor Kelly’s backyard of Kansas City.
Thankfully, the Kansas legislature last week overrode Governor Kelly’s heartless veto, allowing a born-alive protection to go into effect there this summer. Children who survive abortions in Arizona, however, may tragically continue to be subjected to infanticide. Regardless of where a survivor may live, they should be guaranteed the same care – dare we suggest the best medical care provided to NICU patients the same age in hospitals across the country and grow to be members of our family, friends, and members of our community we know and love.
Lawmakers at every level and across our nation would be wise to act compassionately when presented with the opportunity to protect life in their states.
LifeNews Note: Melissa Ohden is the founder and CEO of the Abortion Survivors Network. Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America and author of “Life is Winning: Inside the Fight for Unborn Children and Their Mothers.”
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