Opinion Pieces


Not all violence and blood treated the same by media April 22, 2013 by Richard Nelson

Blood stains, severed limbs, the taking of innocent human life. Every one of us is horrified by last Monday's terrorist attack in Boston, but what I just described is another case of cold-blooded killing that the national media has neglected to report. It is the trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell, the notorious late-term abortionist in Philadelphia who is accused of murdering a patient by administering a lethal overdose of drugs. He's also accused of snipping the spinal cords of seven babies born alive in his clinic known as the "House of Horrors."

Grief. Sadness. Compassion. Outrage at the perps. Yes. We stand with Boston. Our hearts go out to the runners and bystanders who were injured and to the families who are in pain. We stand together against terrorism. But why do we waver when we learn of murder going on behind closed doors for decades? In less desirable parts of town? Against newborns? Pray tell. Can we be consistent in our outrage?

The day after the bombing, Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life endured shocking courtroom testimony describing unthinkable acts and deplorable conditions in Gosnell’s clinic. Furniture in the recovery room was stained with blood. Cats roamed freely and left droppings about. The janitor testified to once unclogging a toilet drain where baby arms came up. Jars of tiny baby feet lined clinic shelves. Pavone described the trial as something out of Nuremburg. Yet the mainstream media is AWOL in the mostly vacant courtroom.

Marc Lamont Hill, a Columbia University professor and regular guest on Fox News told Lifesite News “for what it’s worth, I do think that those of us on the Left have made a decision not to cover this trial because we worry that it’ll compromise abortion rights. Whether you agree with abortion or not, I do think there’s a direct connection between the media’s failure to cover this and our own political commitments on the Left.” Since when have some atrocities become too hot for the media to report? For the record, the last crimes against humanity in a Western nation and covered up by a complicit media occurred in the place Pavone was reminded about in the trial.

One of the most chilling testimonies came from Sherry West, one of Gosnell’s assistants who accused him of killing children after they were born. West told the jury that on one occasion she heard a baby “screaming” and “screeching” during one of Gosnell’s “procedures.” Gosnell requested her help and sent her to another room. In it, she found an 18-to-24-inch baby whose eyes weren’t fully formed, lying in a clear glass pan and “screeching, making this noise” that “sounded like a little alien."  It “really freaked me out,” she said. The horrified West then left the room.

I'm grieved to write this, sickened by the detailed descriptions of evil, and appalled that this human rights atrocity perpetrated against a certain class of people took place in the United States, not far from Boston. I'm just as appalled that the media is turning a blind eye to it. If it were my choice, I’d much rather write about something else, but my conscience wouldn’t let me.  It is likely that Gosnell murdered hundreds of babies born alive while practicing for some 40 years. What’s the media’s excuse for not reporting on this? This is a story that should have been front page news on every U.S. paper, but sadly it was not.

Contrary to some objections, the Gosnell trial does not take away from Boston any more than Newtown or Aurora does.  Add Philadelphia to the list. It is just as newsworthy. It is a bombshell of another sort, a school shooting behind closed doors, another chapter of man’s inhumanity to man. This story underscores the necessity for each of us to consistently stand in defense of life no matter how difficult it is to stomach the truth, mainstream media notwithstanding.

Richard Nelson is the executive director of the Commonwealth Policy Center, a non profit public policy organization. He resides in Trigg County with his wife and children.



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