Must-read column by David Freddoso: “A Tale of Two Massacres”

Please read and share this column by David Freddoso. When you’re done, review this news story from Florida about a Planned Parenthood employee saying that infanticide – specifically, killing a child who survives a abortion – should be a matter between a woman and her doctor. (Planned Parenthood has since issued a “clarification,” saying that “appropriate care” should be given.)

Planned Parenthood defining appropriate care: there’s food for thought. But I digress.

I am indebted to Freddoso of the Washington Examiner for his insightful column published yesterday. He succinctly summarizes the ghastly murder charges against abortionist Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia. He compares those murders at the mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Then he gets to a question I would like to pose to every New Hampshire legislator who has opposed increased regulation of New Hampshire abortion facilities:

“Many have asked what kind of law they could pass to prevent the next Newtown. Few are writing about how to prevent the next Kermit Gosnell. Given the frequent claim that abortion is safer for being legal, and the eagerness of the abortion rights lobby to distance itself from Gosnell, why such incredible and inflexible resistance to basic safety regulations?”

We’ve seen resistance in New Hampshire to even the slightest increased oversight of abortion facilities. We’ve seen resistance to identifying who is performing the procedures. Yet whenever there is a relevant hearing in Concord, women with soothing voices and moving anecdotes and paychecks from abortion providers assure legislators that more regulation is unnecessary.

Is there a Gosnell in New Hampshire? I hope not. I’ll venture a guess that the spokeswomen for abortion facilities hope not. We’re taking an awful lot on faith, though, especially when New Hampshire does not mandate abortion reporting. Late-term abortions? No one knows how many, or where they are done, or by whom, or how women fare afterwards, or what happens to children who survive abortions. In New Hampshire, is a woman seeking abortion entitled to a termination of pregnancy or to a dead baby?  Gosnell forces me to consider the difference.

We shudder and then become outraged, rightly so, when six-year-olds are murdered at school. We have Congressional hearings and increased activity in legislatures nationwide about preventing more such atrocities. Where’s the similar outrage over Gosnell? Where are the hearings about preventing deaths like the ones of the infants whose bodies were found at his “clinic”? Will the woman whose death has been laid at his door become the face of abortion regulation efforts?

When I hear it can’t happen here in New Hampshire, I fear the real message is I don’t want to know. Get over it. Mandatory reporting is overdue.


Choice In Connecticut

It’s hard for me to take in the full horror of yesterday’s massacre of children in Newtown, Connecticut. The culture of life can seem like a lost cause in the face of this atrocity. That’s “atrocity,” not “tragedy.” A tragedy is something that happens due to an element of mischance or mistake, devoid of intention.

Choice matters. The fact that we are able to make choices cannot be where the lesson ends. What Adam Lanza chose yesterday made a horrible and bloody difference. He wasn’t striking a blow for some philosophical “right to choose.” His “choice” was to kill people. I may never know his reasons, though I am sure some enterprising journalists are even now digging for clues.

I can barely fathom the grief and anger of the parents who survive their children. There’s more than enough suffering to go around: the first responders who found the children and their teachers dead and dying; the family of Adam Lanza; the surviving children who had to learn much too soon that evil is real. I pray for the consolation of every one of them. And I wonder how many parents of troubled children are thinking to themselves “there but for the grace of God …”

I have no lessons to share. I am simply venting some of my own shock. I don’t blame God. Yesterday’s news came from human free will at its worst.

And about that free will: one of the most challenging prayers in my faith tradition was written by Ignatius Loyola, a 16th-century man of tremendously constructive energy and faith. I find myself praying it now. It’s called the Suscipe, and it’s sometimes known as “The Radical Prayer,” in the sense of getting to the root (radix) of a matter.

Take Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all that I have and possess. Thou hast given all to me. To Thee, O lord, I return it. All is Thine, dispose of it wholly according to Thy will. Give me Thy love and thy grace, for this is sufficient for me.