‘Partial birth’ abortions unnecessary

The term “partial birth abortion” is completely accurate in describing a procedure that involves having a child partially removed from her or his mother in order to puncture the child’s head and have her or his brain removed. This may not be a medical definition, but it is an accurate description of the procedure — after all, “pickpocketing” may not be a legal term, but it is still an acceptable term for a type of theft.
The Nebraska law was an effort to curtail a procedure, one not needed medically, that the people of the state found disgusting and barbaric. The law passed through the Legislature a mere one vote shy of unanimity, and the state joined 29 other states that have felt pressure from their citizens to end the use of this procedure through the democratic process.
The pro-choice crowd has no regrets over the overruling of this law; the members would have found the language of this law too vague no matter what. Their complaints about the vagueness of the language of the law just provide political cover from having to come out and admit, honestly, that they have no moral qualms with this procedure.
There was a recent exchange on the floor of the Senate that shows this. Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Penn., posed for Russ Feingold, D-Wis., and Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., an interesting and plausible hypothetical: What should happen if an infant, instead of being partially removed, happens to slip from the birth canal entirely? Is killing the baby, at that time, still a matter of “choice?”
They responded that the matter should still be between the mother and her abortionist. Santorum posed a similar question to Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., who responded that a child only has rights “when you bring your baby home.”
While keeping these thoughts from pro-choice leaders in mind, think to yourself if any changes to the Nebraska law would be enough for them.

Aaron Gilmore’s column originally appeared in the University of Iowa’s The Daily Iowan on July 21.