Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

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Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 5:56 pm UTC

It's making the news recently because the trial started last month:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kermit_Gosnell

Basically, the administration under Republican Tom Ridge ended regular inspections of abortion clinics. In this particular clinic, there were a lot of questionable practices (fetus feet kept preserved in jars for no medical purpose, large numbers of prescriptions for drugs that indicate it was probably fraudulent, left fetal remains inside a woman and when she came back performed the operation with no anesthesia, a woman died from drug overdose administered at his clinic etc.) as well as more clear cut stuff like the murder of several born-alive infants and performing an abortion on a minor against her will. And it continued for quite a while, despite several red flags.

Tom Ridge wouldn't comment on the matter.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:11 pm UTC

I'm not sure why this is "why abortion clinics need oversight" rather than "why private medical clinics need oversight". While this particular case deals with an abortion clinic, there's no reason why similar things couldn't happen at other facilities. Malpractice is a potential problem in any medical discipline.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:15 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:I'm not sure why this is "why abortion clinics need oversight" rather than "why private medical clinics need oversight". While this particular case deals with an abortion clinic, there's no reason why similar things couldn't happen at other facilities. Malpractice is a potential problem in any medical discipline.

Don't other medical clinics have oversight already? I assumed they did. Heck, fast food restaurants have oversight.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Garm » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:16 pm UTC

Specifically, abortion clinics don't need oversight because lack of oversight gives abortion opponents another source of leverage to try to limit women's choice.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Angua » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:24 pm UTC

I agree with laserguy - malpractice can occur anywhere. None of this stuff is particularly particular to abortion (you can get people keeping other tissue samples without patients' permission which is not allowed, you can still have shoddy work done [seriously, leaving retained products is extremely dangerous which is why even countries where abortion is all out illegal still give D&C's as that's the treatment for incomplete miscarriage], and you can still get drugs being misused).
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 6:29 pm UTC

Angua wrote:I agree with laserguy - malpractice can occur anywhere. None of this stuff is particularly particular to abortion (you can get people keeping other tissue samples without patients' permission which is not allowed, you can still have shoddy work done [seriously, leaving retained products is extremely dangerous which is why even countries where abortion is all out illegal still give D&C's as that's the treatment for incomplete miscarriage], and you can still get drugs being misused).

Yes. I fully agree. I was under the impression that other medical services already had oversight. Was I mistaken?
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Angua » Thu Apr 11, 2013 7:45 pm UTC

Don't all places that practice medicine in the states have some sort of oversight?

I mean, if you have food and health inspectors, and people who do fire regulations and stuff, surely medical clinics get something. Just because it's an abortion clinic doesn't make it particularly special - still the same standard of care required, still the same needs cleanliness wise, and still the same needs for drug regulation.

However, I don't spend much time in the States, so maybe they don't bother or something. I rather suspect though that this has mainly been picked up on by the media because abortion is a hot topic and pro-lifers can go 'look how evil they are'.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:09 pm UTC

Incidentally, I don't see anything in the linked article to suggest that the end of the inspections was an issue. The problem appears to be that the Pennsylvania Department of Health seriously dropped the ball when claims of malpractice at the clinic were brought to their attention on several occasions. This isn't an issue of regular inspections, more an issue of the relevant officials failing to do their jobs at all.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:23 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:Incidentally, I don't see anything in the linked article to suggest that the end of the inspections was an issue. The problem appears to be that the Pennsylvania Department of Health seriously dropped the ball when claims of malpractice at the clinic were brought to their attention on several occasions. This isn't an issue of regular inspections, more an issue of the relevant officials failing to do their jobs at all.

Good point. My title said "oversight", which doesn't necessarily mean only "inspections". (But restaurants get inspections, as do hospitals. It's part of the picture.) The Pennsylvania Department of Health wasn't doing the appropriate oversight either.

I wasn't trying to indicate that Abortion Clinics need more oversight than hospitals or hospice/assisted living centers. I think oversight is needed in all those areas, and poor oversight can lead to bad practices continuing far longer than it should have.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:43 pm UTC

Given that this has been ongoing for a bit, and it hasn't really gotten a ton of media attention, despite the presence of plenty of graphic detail that the media apparently likes, I've heard it suggested that it could be a striking example of media bias.

It HAS been widely reported among the various anti-abortion channels...I've been seeing all manner of links in my facebook feed from people with such interests. The malpractice of this, honestly, seems pretty straightforward, it's the possible abortion rights implications that are gonna be sticky.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:46 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:It HAS been widely reported among the various anti-abortion channels...I've been seeing all manner of links in my facebook feed from people with such interests. The malpractice of this, honestly, seems pretty straightforward, it's the possible abortion rights implications that are gonna be sticky.

How does this even have "abortion rights" implications other than "medical practices should have good oversight, even if they are abortion clinics"? I don't get it.

And it does seem to have the gory details and extreme enough to draw press attention from the sources that love reporting on little girls bodies being found in the woods. I was surprised that I didn't here about this from more sources. Linked to wikipedia because most of the sources I found were right-wing news sources.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:53 pm UTC

Роберт wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:It HAS been widely reported among the various anti-abortion channels...I've been seeing all manner of links in my facebook feed from people with such interests. The malpractice of this, honestly, seems pretty straightforward, it's the possible abortion rights implications that are gonna be sticky.

How does this even have "abortion rights" implications other than "medical practices should have good oversight, even if they are abortion clinics"? I don't get it.

And it does seem to have the gory details and extreme enough to draw press attention from the sources that love reporting on little girls bodies being found in the woods. I was surprised that I didn't here about this from more sources. Linked to wikipedia because most of the sources I found were right-wing news sources.


Well, the people who dislike abortion in general are likely to hold this up as a generalized example of why they think it's evil. Scratch that, they're already doing that. I'd show examples, but I fear most of the forwarded things would be considered in generally poor taste by most. Naturally, this will result in a reaction from the pro-choice side, as that's how these things usually go.

Me, not being an activist for either side, I definitely recognize that it's a failure in oversight issue, but different people view things differently.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:00 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Well, the people who dislike abortion in general are likely to hold this up as a generalized example of why they think it's evil.
Sure, but...
Spoiler:
Well, the people who dislike [the Catholic church] in general are likely to hold this [priest's behavior] up as a generalized example of why they think it's evil.

That's doesn't mean we should downplay a very serious issue.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:03 pm UTC

Well, I'm interested in it because of the potential media bias angle. It's a reason for the potential bias, and I find the bias in what gets covered incredibly fascinating.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:06 pm UTC

Gotcha.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Derek » Thu Apr 11, 2013 9:08 pm UTC

Роберт wrote:How does this even have "abortion rights" implications other than "medical practices should have good oversight, even if they are abortion clinics"? I don't get it.

People will use it as fodder in the abortion debate.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Lucrece » Sat Apr 13, 2013 7:16 am UTC

If abortion wasn't so marginalized across the states by Republican Talibangelists, people wouldn't be going to these seedy shithole clinics to begin with.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Ben-oni » Tue Apr 16, 2013 3:31 pm UTC

This trial has little to do with oversight. The issue is culture. Perhaps this was the worst of clinics in the state. If the Department of Health wouldn't shut it down, then what does it take for them to act? Are the regulators and inspectors so unwilling to act against any abortionist that it takes a dead woman before they'll do anything? How does this particular clinic compare against others?

More importantly, the trial shines a light on the absurdity that is abortion law. Beheading a baby born alive is murder: killing it a few moments earlier while it's in the womb (usually by sucking out its brains) is a legal act. The pro-abortionists have no leg upon which to stand, as this case clearly demonstrates. It puts the lie to the mantra "Safe, Legal, Rare". It's not safe, it's certainly not rare, and no matter how liberal the laws, some will find the boundaries and cross them.

But then, this is all Serious Business. Make note: this is a Very Important Story. No matter how things fall.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Felstaff » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:25 pm UTC

Ben-oni wrote:Beheading a baby born alive is murder: killing it a few moments earlier while it's in the womb (usually by sucking out its brains) is a legal act.

I wasn't aware third trimester, specifically 273rd-day abortions, were legal anywhere in the world. Even The foetal-shaped island of Abortonia, (which is incorrectly named, as it is more of a peninsula anyway), has a 24-week limit on abortions. Although I have issue with its loyalty card scheme.

Ben-oni wrote:The pro-abortionists have no leg upon which to stand

Presumably due to the fact that the leg has been left inside the mother? After all, they only suck out the brains.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:35 pm UTC

I don't see any particular reason to believe this case will be terribly important. I have difficulty imagining that this case will set any precedents or significantly change current laws. It will perhaps convince governments to cough up some money for more inspections of facilities, but I have a hard time seeing it going much beyond that.

Felstaff wrote:I wasn't aware third trimester, specifically 273rd-day abortions, were legal anywhere in the world. Even The foetal-shaped island of Abortonia, (which is incorrectly named, as it is more of a peninsula anyway), has a 24-week limit on abortions. Although I have issue with its loyalty card scheme. (The tenth one's free).


Strictly speaking, there are no legal barriers to third-trimester abortions in Canada.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Mighty Jalapeno » Tue Apr 16, 2013 4:43 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:Strictly speaking, there are no legal barriers to third-trimester abortions in Canada.

Or America, apparently.
Third-trimester abortions are not generally available. For instance, in Quebec, there is currently no doctor who will perform a third-term abortion unless the health of the woman is in great peril or there is a genetic disorder. Currently the province sends women who seek to have third-term abortions performed to the United States.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Ben-oni » Wed Apr 17, 2013 1:51 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:I don't see any particular reason to believe this case will be terribly important. I have difficulty imagining that this case will set any precedents or significantly change current laws. It will perhaps convince governments to cough up some money for more inspections of facilities, but I have a hard time seeing it going much beyond that.


That's because you don't see the larger issue (aka abortion) as being undecided. It's obvious to you: if there's fetal tissue growing inside a woman, she has every right to have it removed before it inconveniences her further.

To the rest of the world, referring to an unborn baby as "fetal tissue" is horrific, as is most of the abortion "industry". This case draws a light upon what happens behind those doors. Will the case itself have lasting legal impact? No, of course not. But it has changed the course of the national discourse on the issue, and in this manner. The Left prefers to argue from a perspective of compassion. "If you have compassion for women," they say, "you'd give her the right to choose. Who's needs matter more? An educated, compassionate being, or a small clump of cells?" We all know the arguments.

One of the focuses for the debate has been the cutoff point for legal abortion. Second trimester? Third? When the baby emerges from the womb? When you bring it home from the hospital? When the child can feel pain? (We'll just anesthetize the fetus before we begin, shall we?) When a skeletal structure forms? The Left has always argued that the hypothetical horrors dreamed up by the pro-lifers don't happen. They do. And the proof is evident. Moreover, this was not a one-off. The compassionate position is that the more defenseless a being, the more protection it needs. The pro-choicers are losing the debate. Badly. That's why this story is so important.

There are other angles. For instance, some say pro-lifers should tone down their rhetoric. Stop calling abortionists mass-murderers. Perhaps the label isn't accurate, but we know that in at least one case it is. It probably is in more. Here's something you can lay money on: the rhetoric will be heating up.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Tyndmyr » Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:04 am UTC

Ben-oni wrote:The pro-choicers are losing the debate. Badly.


I don't know that this is the case. Like it or not, the pro-choice position is the one established as constitutionally correct, and it has been for a bit...and there's no sign of imminent change here. That's not really a bad loss for them. Yes, this particular incident does them no favors, but it ain't gonna overturn the big stuff. Everyone agrees that this case is horrific and bad, but that doesn't necessarily translate to a desire to end all abortions.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby LaserGuy » Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:49 am UTC

Ben-oni wrote:The compassionate position is that the more defenseless a being, the more protection it needs. The pro-choicers are losing the debate. Badly. That's why this story is so important.

There are other angles. For instance, some say pro-lifers should tone down their rhetoric. Stop calling abortionists mass-murderers. Perhaps the label isn't accurate, but we know that in at least one case it is. It probably is in more. Here's something you can lay money on: the rhetoric will be heating up.


Although I expect this thread to denigrate into a thread-locking full-out abortion debate sooner or later, I'll try to keep this closer to the matter at hand.

The reason I say that this case doesn't matter has a lot to do with the rhetoric. Pro-lifers have already called abortion a genocide, a holocaust, have compared abortion providers to Nazis and serial killers. How can you possibly heat up the rhetoric further? What more can be said that hasn't already been said? Moreover, and this is important--the rhetoric doesn't matter. The two sides aren't trying to persuade each other of anything, because their positions are fundamentally irreconcilable. And probably--in the United States at least--there aren't that many people in the middle ground. There might be people who don't care, but heating up the rhetoric is probably not likely to make them care--if anything, I suspect that the people who don't care probably would wish everyone would stop shouting and move on with their lives. The rhetoric is meaningless. Pro-lifers will donate to their favourite pro-life charities and write to their pro-life elected officials to try to pass more pro-life laws. Pro-choice people will donate to their favourite pro-choice charities and write to their pro-choice elected officials to try to repeal more pro-life laws. Unless this case sets a big precedent--never mind a big precedent, there's no reason to expect this case will set any precedents--then status quo is maintained.

I don't think that pro-choicers are losing the debate, because I don't think there is a debate. Not because the issue is settled, but because the sides are so entrenched that the words that they're saying to each other literally don't matter.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Ben-oni » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:34 am UTC

As I said, this is Serious Business. I'll try to avoid devolving into arguing abortion in general, but stick to how this case impacts that debate. Undoubtedly my opinions on that matter inform those on this, but it would be impossible to understand this case while taking a neutral stance. Furthermore, I would wonder if any of my opinions here would be grounds for locking the thread. Nothing offered before explains the case as more than a minor issue of regulatory oversight or local crime. If it were only about those, it wouldn't have claimed national attention. I'm trying to offer another perspective. I hope I can be forgiven if it's necessarily a bit colored.

---

First, let me concede that laws aren't changed over night. And as New York has so recently discovered, shouldn't be (sorry, different story, different issue, different topic). Supreme Court decisions take a lot of momentum to overturn. We know the Court's bad rulings often take a generation or more to be undone. The Right is trying to tackle this one slowly, eroding it one piece at a time. Whichever side of the fence you might be on, I hope we can at least agree that this is the strategy for what the Right perceives to be one of the Court's worst rulings.

So, let's try the big question: Kermit Gosnell killed living babies that had been born in his clinic, for which murders he is being tried. Had they still been in the womb, taking their lives would have been legal. Is this law right? Why should a question of geography matter?

Personally, I find it hard to believe that asking "When is killing a baby acceptable?" is not rhetorical. What happened? This case is making people seriously wonder and ask these questions.

Moreover, the images of abortion clinics this case offers change the perception of the industry as a whole. Perhaps most are clean sterile environments run by skilled, compassionate people: hospital clean. But that's not the image people will have from now on. The euphemisms "women's health clinic" and "family planning services" don't do much to hide the truth anymore. And why were euphemisms needed anyways if there's nothing wrong with the practice? Is it possible that women who go to such places feel shame?

So, yes. This case matters. Not the outcome, but the facts of the case itself. They will intrinsically shape the debate in the U.S. for years to come.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby ameretrifle » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:49 am UTC

Ben-oni wrote:As I said, this is Serious Business.

Funny you should open with that, sugar, because this is, in fact, NOT Serious Business. Surely Serious Business is a better place to discuss your Serious Business?

(you even keep capitalizing it, don't you dare argue it's not the appropriate venue)

I for one am very sick of threads here turning into endless SB philosophical debates that have maybe 10% in common with the actual story that started the thread but that is neither here nor there

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby sardia » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:51 am UTC

I know you're anti-choice (funny how wording matters, no? Oh well) but do you have to be so over the top with your words? It's akin to describing cavities as bacteria shitting in your mouth because you have a fetish for it. It's technically true on some level, but you're implying a lot that is contested. Tone it down, this isn't Fox News; take your time and give a reasoned debate about it. Starting off with "women feel shame for going into a murder factory" doesn't burnish your reputation, to say the least.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Angua » Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:20 am UTC

I'm pretty sure the euphemisms 'Women's health clinic' and 'family planning services' are more to do with the stigma around sex than around abortion. These clinics do many other things (different forms of contraception, STD's, etc) than just abortion, as evidenced by the fact that they exist in countries where abortion is illegal.

Also, abortion should be legal as it is going to happen whether you like it or not - women have abortions in places where it is illegal (often in higher rates than countries where it is legal as those countries often also have better uptake of birth control) and the only difference between being legal and illegal is that the woman is much more likely to die if she does it by illegal means. Being 'pro-life' is a complete misnomer as in those cases you'd lose the woman and the foetus.

Maybe we should start calling them 'pro-death'.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby rat4000 » Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:26 am UTC

Ben-oni wrote:There are other angles. For instance, some say pro-lifers should tone down their rhetoric. Stop calling abortionists mass-murderers. Perhaps the label isn't accurate, but we know that in at least one case it is. It probably is in more.
I'm not going to argue the ethics of abortion with you (except to note that it is actually surprisingly difficult to construct a good argument against infanticide) -- I'm just going to note that the quoted part of your post is idiotic. If we accept the validity of going from "one person in this group was a mass murderer" to "all or most of the people in this group are mass murderers, and therefore we should outlaw the group" means that we should, in no particular order, get rid of America, Germany, Austria and China; outlaw almost all religions; outlaw universities; eradicate humanity. (It is unsurprising that the argument leads to absurdities so easily, since it involves an invalid logical inference. ∃x(Gx ∧ Mx) → ∀x(Gx → Mx)? No.)

Angua, that's an intuitively plausible argument, but I'd love citations if you have them. (One thing I dug up: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3310607.html says that the abortion rate in the USA was 21 per 1000 women in 2003, but 57 per 1000 black women, which to me is a hint that it's influenced by more than mere legality. The article also links it to contraception use, and while this is pure conjecture I'd wager that the ridiculous sex ed in the USA results in less contraception use than in similar countries.)

ameretrifle: about most articles, there just isn't that much to say. "Abortion should be legal and abortion clinics should have oversight, because otherwise women go to places like this, and worse than this" is obvious, and exhausted after a single post. ("This is terrible" is trite.) Of course, all threads can die after the obvious has been said, but people want to share opinions... I've already learned something from the thread, specifically the conclusions of the article above; I don't think it's all that terrible that discussion drifts.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Angua » Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:38 am UTC

My comparison to other countries would probably have been using the UK/Europe as a baseline rather than the US, however I can't find hard figures for that and the comparison to birth control (though birth control access is a factor that should be considered and makes comparing countries difficult).

Anyway http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16618156

Professor Beverly Winikoff, from Gynuity, a New York organisation which pushes for access to safer abortion, wrote in the Lancet: "Unsafe abortion is one of the five major contributors to maternal mortality, causing one in every seven or eight maternal deaths in 2008.

"Yet, when abortion is provided with proper medical techniques and care, the risk of death is negligible and nearly 14 times lower than that of childbirth.

"The data continue to confirm what we have known for decades - that women who wish to terminate unwanted pregnancies will seek abortion at any cost, even if it is illegal or involves risk to their own lives."


Countries with restrictive abortion laws did not have a corresponding decrease in abortion rate - in some cases, the reverse was true
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Tyndmyr » Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:55 am UTC

Angua wrote:I'm pretty sure the euphemisms 'Women's health clinic' and 'family planning services' are more to do with the stigma around sex than around abortion. These clinics do many other things (different forms of contraception, STD's, etc) than just abortion, as evidenced by the fact that they exist in countries where abortion is illegal.


Hmm, good point. Yeah, the stigma around sex does seem blatantly pervasive, and definitely seems to apply to non-abortion topics, so I don't think that abortion is a great explanation for the stigma. Not a complete one, anyway.

Also, abortion should be legal as it is going to happen whether you like it or not - women have abortions in places where it is illegal (often in higher rates than countries where it is legal as those countries often also have better uptake of birth control) and the only difference between being legal and illegal is that the woman is much more likely to die if she does it by illegal means. Being 'pro-life' is a complete misnomer as in those cases you'd lose the woman and the foetus.


Well, I agree that strict prohibition has kind of a lackluster record. Generally, at least some people do try to get whatever is banned done anyway. And yeah, there's a good argument that legalizing a given behavior allows proper regulation to prevent terrible conditions. Conditions sort of like these, actually. This is kind of the nightmare scenario. Now, as for this merely being business as usual...that doesn't seem to be the case. I'm open to evidence explaining why it is, naturally, but this particular case seemed unusually bad.

rat4000 wrote:Angua, that's an intuitively plausible argument, but I'd love citations if you have them. (One thing I dug up: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3310607.html says that the abortion rate in the USA was 21 per 1000 women in 2003, but 57 per 1000 black women, which to me is a hint that it's influenced by more than mere legality. The article also links it to contraception use, and while this is pure conjecture I'd wager that the ridiculous sex ed in the USA results in less contraception use than in similar countries.)


Oh, sure it is. LOTS of things other than legality influence behavior. I, for one, am all for taking these routes to minimize abortions. The best solution isn't "nobody can have an abortion", but "nobody chooses to have an abortion", yes? Surely that's something both sides can agree on.

Therefore, the optimal path is not to fight over questions of legality that, frankly, are going nowhere fast...it's to find and work on the factors that make people choose abortion. I'd probably start with sex-ed, support for single mothers, improved adoption support, and the like. All of those seem like they have a high probability to affect someone's choices in this respect.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby eSOANEM » Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:17 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:
rat4000 wrote:Angua, that's an intuitively plausible argument, but I'd love citations if you have them. (One thing I dug up: http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3310607.html says that the abortion rate in the USA was 21 per 1000 women in 2003, but 57 per 1000 black women, which to me is a hint that it's influenced by more than mere legality. The article also links it to contraception use, and while this is pure conjecture I'd wager that the ridiculous sex ed in the USA results in less contraception use than in similar countries.)


Oh, sure it is. LOTS of things other than legality influence behavior. I, for one, am all for taking these routes to minimize abortions. The best solution isn't "nobody can have an abortion", but "nobody chooses to have an abortion", yes? Surely that's something both sides can agree on.

Therefore, the optimal path is not to fight over questions of legality that, frankly, are going nowhere fast...it's to find and work on the factors that make people choose abortion. I'd probably start with sex-ed, support for single mothers, improved adoption support, and the like. All of those seem like they have a high probability to affect someone's choices in this respect.


The ideal path would be that no-one gets raped and that all sexual encounters between partners who do not want a baby uses multiple forms of contraception (e.g. the guy wears a condom and the woman's on the pill).

This is sadly unrealistic. IIRC there are some statistics from the UK which show that, whilst conception rates are pretty much equal across all social strata, the rates of unwanted children and late abortions are higher in the lower ones because middle class girls are more likely to use emergency contraception and then those that do not are more likely to have early abortions.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby KarenRei » Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:27 pm UTC

Felstaff wrote:
Ben-oni wrote:Beheading a baby born alive is murder: killing it a few moments earlier while it's in the womb (usually by sucking out its brains) is a legal act.

I wasn't aware third trimester, specifically 273rd-day abortions, were legal anywhere in the world. Even The foetal-shaped island of Abortonia, (which is incorrectly named, as it is more of a peninsula anyway), has a 24-week limit on abortions. Although I have issue with its loyalty card scheme.

Ben-oni wrote:The pro-abortionists have no leg upon which to stand

Presumably due to the fact that the leg has been left inside the mother? After all, they only suck out the brains.


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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:27 pm UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:Well, I agree that strict prohibition has kind of a lackluster record. Generally, at least some people do try to get whatever is banned done anyway. And yeah, there's a good argument that legalizing a given behavior allows proper regulation to prevent terrible conditions. Conditions sort of like these, actually. This is kind of the nightmare scenario.
Yeah, someone's keeping the original topic in mind, instead of devolving into a generic abortion thread induced by Ben-oni's eye-rolling posts!

Abortions (of some sort) should be legal, and very few people who have educated themselves on the subject will disagree. (Sure, some will. Especially in the Catholic church.)

Now, once we define which line to draw (generally, birth), we should make sure that the medical care provided is meeting normal medical standards. Hospitals get oversight, abortions are often significant medical procedures and as such should get oversight. Women need access to SAFE medical care. Not medical care in which they are forcibly stripped naked and operated on against their will. Not medical care in which negligence causes death. And we definitely don't want infanticide to be occurring.

Transparency and oversight is hugely important in food service and medical service. Can we ignore Ben-oni and talk about what went wrong here and what should be done?
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Heisenberg » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:24 pm UTC

I imagine the first step would be to convict this murderer Gosnell and lock him up forever. We should probably go after his associates as well.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Garm » Wed Apr 17, 2013 6:57 pm UTC

This isn't about rape or access to contraception. This is about a back alley abortion clinic that existed to serve poor women who had no other options. We shouldn't look at this as a reason that abortion is terrible, we should look at this as a reason why abortion needs to be legal and accessible so that clinics like this don't have to exist. No amount of oversight is going to make tragedies like this not happen if we live in a climate where poor women don't have access to safe, legal abortions.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Heisenberg » Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:55 pm UTC

Oversight does prevent tragedies. It's how we guarantee that procedures are safe. The only way to guarantee safety is to watch clinics like a hawk so that malpractice like this doesn't happen.

Yes, jailing Gosnell does mean that women in Philly have to go to Planned Parenthood instead, which may not be convenient, but on the plus side, they aren't going to be killed. Ease of access seems to pale in comparison to dead women and children.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby LaserGuy » Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:33 pm UTC

You could, I dunno, get a socialized medical care system that pays for abortions. Then you get both ease of access and avoid having shady clinics around.

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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Garm » Wed Apr 17, 2013 10:03 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:Oversight does prevent tragedies. It's how we guarantee that procedures are safe. The only way to guarantee safety is to watch clinics like a hawk so that malpractice like this doesn't happen.

Yes, jailing Gosnell does mean that women in Philly have to go to Planned Parenthood instead, which may not be convenient, but on the plus side, they aren't going to be killed. Ease of access seems to pale in comparison to dead women and children.


Right. Either none of these women could afford Planned Parenthood or could get to Planned Parenthood or even knew such an option existed. My point about oversight is that back alley abortion clinics are going to exist in a climate where they're forced to exist. By their nature, they will resist oversight since they try hard not to draw any sort of attention at all.
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Re: Kermit Gosnell - aka why abortion clinics need oversight

Postby Роберт » Thu Apr 18, 2013 4:17 pm UTC

Garm wrote:Right. Either none of these women could afford Planned Parenthood or could get to Planned Parenthood or even knew such an option existed. My point about oversight is that back alley abortion clinics are going to exist in a climate where they're forced to exist. By their nature, they will resist oversight since they try hard not to draw any sort of attention at all.

This wasn't a back alley, illegal clinic. It was given legitimacy without the appropriate oversight. I'm sure some of the women that went here would have chosen a different option had this clinic been obviously illegitimate.
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