Late Term Abortion Essay

1410 Words Oct 30th, 2007 6 Pages
Stop Murdering the Defenseless

In most states in our nation today abortion is illegal when the fetus becomes a viable human being, meaning that it can survive outside of its mother's womb. This is often referred to as a late-term abortion, which usually occurs between the 24th and 28th weeks of a pregnancy. One of the problems associated with the ban on late term abortions in the United States is that viability is not defined. That is, there is no set week of gestation where a fetus is said to be viable. Late term abortions are performed for several reasons: sometimes the woman was not aware she was pregnant until the third trimester, some fetal abnormalities can not be detected until late in pregnancy, a mother may become too ill to
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Registered Nurse Brenda Shafer recounts a particular abortion where the doctor, "delivered the baby's body and the arms-- everything but the head. The doctor kept the baby's head just inside the uterus. The baby's little fingers were clasping and unclasping, and his feet were kicking. Then the doctor stuck the scissors through the back of his head, and the baby's arms jerked out in a flinch, a startle reaction, like a baby does when he thinks that he might fall. The doctor opened up the scissors, stuck a high-powered suction tube into the opening and sucked the baby's brains out. Now the baby was completely limp" (Johnson). If a newborn baby was treated this way it would be considered murder and so should this. As pointed out by Mary E. Williams, those that are against late-term abortions maintain that "it is a grisly and immoral procedure akin to infanticide" and as physicians M. Leroy Sprang and Mark G. Neerhoff claim, "the procedure is hardly ever performed as a result of a medical emergency" for "the vast majority are done not in response to extreme medical conditions but on healthy mothers and healthy fetuses" (13). Most mothers who are unable to carry their babies to full term due to illness or injury would be offered a much more caring and humane way to end the pregnancy. Dr. Curtis Cook, an OB/GYN physician in West Michigan stated that partial birth abortion "is never necessary to preserve the life or

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