March 8, 2006

by Reb Yudel
Profiles in Hypocrisy

A collection of anecdotes from abortion doctors:

"I've had several cases over the years in which the anti-abortion patient had rationalized in one way or another that her case was the only exception, but the one that really made an impression was the college senior who was the president of her campus Right-to-Life organization, meaning that she had worked very hard in that organization for several years. As I was completing her procedure, I asked what she planned to do about her high office in the RTL organization. Her response was a wide-eyed, 'You're not going to tell them, are you!?' When assured that I was not, she breathed a sigh of relief, explaining how important that position was to her and how she wouldn't want this to interfere with it." (Physician, Texas)

"In 1990, in the Boston area, Operation Rescue and other groups were regularly blockading the clinics, and many of us went every Saturday morning for months to help women and staff get in. As a result, we knew many of the 'antis' by face. One morning, a woman who had been a regular 'sidewalk counselor' went into the clinic with a young woman who looked like she was 16-17, and obviously her daughter. When the mother came out about an hour later, I had to go up and ask her if her daughter's situation had caused her to change her mind. 'I don't expect you to understand my daughter's situation!' she angrily replied. The following Saturday, she was back, pleading with women entering the clinic not to 'murder their babies.'" (Clinic escort, Massachusetts)

"My first encounter with this phenomenon came when I was doing a 2-week follow-up at a family planning clinic. The woman's anti-choice values spoke indirectly through her expression and body language. She told me that she had been offended by the other women in the abortion clinic waiting room because they were using abortion as a form of birth control, but her condom had broken so she had no choice! I had real difficulty not pointing out that she did have a choice, and she had made it! Just like the other women in the waiting room." (Physician, Ontario)


Haven't we firmly established by now that the real thrust of the Conservative and Republican agenda on a wide variety of issues is the restriction of universal access to anything that can be a source of profit? Is it Right-to Life that motivates the Republicans, or is it the right to keep people of color, poor people, the others, from enjoying access to those services that rich people have always enjoyed? Is Universal Health Care a bad socialist idea or is it just an opportunity for the damn liberals to keep really rich companies from making ridiculous profits, whil rich people pay for whatever they need anyway?
i am sure that there are real sincere Right-to-Lifers, but their obtuseness in the face of what can go wrong iin the conduct of day to day life, as in the third story cited, is outdone only by the cynicism of the (Republican) politicians who exploit their issue for their own benefit.

Posted by: Jordan Hirsch at March 9, 2006 8:22 AM

Damning if true, but is there any way to independently confirm any of the anecdotes she relates? One thing that suggests this is, um, enhanced, is that everyone's anonymous. I can understand why the respondents not want to identify the people they are exposing, what risk do some of them run in letting their own names be used?

Posted by: andy at March 9, 2006 3:19 PM

I suppose one could call some abortion clinics and get their opinions. Are these free-floating urban legends? Or does everyone involved have such a story -- or at least one in every minyan?

I wonder if any local paper would be interested in getting a round-up of mood of local abortion providers, preferably those of Jewish origins?

Posted by: Reb Yudel at March 9, 2006 3:26 PM


It sounds so very true to me. And, respondents cannot identify themselves because there is a certain amount of client/patient privelege that, thank goodness, is still protected. I'm glad they are speaking out at all.

Posted by: Eve at March 16, 2006 9:02 AM
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