Abortion Survivor: “Don’t Have a Conversation About Us Without Us”

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Abortion Survivor: "Don't Have a Conversation About Us Without Us"

In the wake of Vir­ginia Gov­er­nor Northam’s remarks about how to care for a child who sur­vives an attempted abor­tion — “The infant would be resus­ci­tated if that’s what the mother and the fam­ily desired, and then a dis­cus­sion would ensue between the physi­cians and the mother” — Pres­i­dent Trump invited abor­tion sur­vivors to the White House on Feb­ru­ary 14 to tell him their own sto­ries. Among the sur­vivors was Melissa Ohden, whose 2017 book You Car­ried Me is an account of her remark­able life, a life she knows wasn’t sup­posed to happen.

Official White House photo of President Donald Trump with Melissa Ohden, 2/14/19.
Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump with Melissa Ohden. Offi­cial White House photo.

Call the White House visit a photo op or par­ti­san pos­tur­ing if you want. I call it it push­ing back on infanticide.

When a child makes it out of the mother’s womb despite the best efforts of an abor­tion­ist, does that child have a right — an inde­pen­dent right, not con­tin­gent on the mother’s or doctor’s wishes — to be pro­tected and nur­tured? Not accord­ing to Gov. Northam, among oth­ers. On Feb­ru­ary 14, Pres­i­dent Trump lent his bully pul­pit to a group of peo­ple whose mes­sage is very dif­fer­ent from the Governor’s.

Pres­i­dent Trump wel­comed the abor­tion sur­vivors a few days after the U.S. Sen­ate failed to advance a Born-​Alive Infants Pro­tec­tion Act. Sen. Patty Mur­ray (D-​WA) blocked a unan­i­mous con­sent res­o­lu­tion on the Act. She later tweeted “I’m con­tin­u­ing to stand strong with women, their doc­tors, and the med­ical com­mu­nity against the Sen­ate Repub­li­cans’ shame­less attacks on women’s health and repro­duc­tive rights.” No men­tion of whether that was an ever­green tweet of hers or one refer­ring directly to the born-​alive bill.

Let Sen. Mur­ray and her col­leagues try stand­ing strong with Ms. Ohden.

From Ms. Ohden via Face­book:

I’ve been think­ing about this a lot lately. It seems like the world is hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion about abor­tion, chil­dren sur­viv­ing abor­tions, and they don’t real­ize or acknowl­edge that there are a group of peo­ple who know all too well what every­one is talk­ing about.

Don’t have a con­ver­sa­tion about abor­tion with­out those who have sur­vived it. Don’t have a con­ver­sa­tion about us, with­out us.

Lis­ten to our voices. Share our sto­ries. We’re not hypo­thet­i­cal cases. We’re human beings.

We live in a time when abor­tion defend­ers are pre­pared to oppose poli­cies man­dat­ing care for chil­dren who sur­vive abor­tion. I’ve watched leg­is­la­tors in my own state defeat bills that include born-​alive pro­tec­tions. The word infan­ti­cide may still have an unsa­vory odor, but the act itself is in dan­ger of being san­i­tized as a “repro­duc­tive right.”

Wher­ever that hap­pens, remem­ber what Melissa Ohden says: Lis­ten to our voices.

Head over to my blog Leaven for the Loaf for a link to Con­gres­sional tes­ti­mony by sur­vivors of the “dreaded complication.”

Ellen Kolb
Ellen Kolb

Ellen Kolb writes about the life issues at Leaven for the Loaf and EllenKolb​.com.

Keep DaT­e­chGuy Blog going with a hit to DaTip­Jar. Thanks!

In the wake of Virginia Governor Northam’s remarks about how to care for a child who survives an attempted abortion – “The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother” – President Trump invited abortion survivors to the White House on February 14 to tell him their own stories. Among the survivors was Melissa Ohden, whose 2017 book You Carried Me is an account of her remarkable life, a life she knows wasn’t supposed to happen.

Official White House photo of President Donald Trump with Melissa Ohden, 2/14/19.
President Donald Trump with Melissa Ohden. Official White House photo.

Call the White House visit a photo op or partisan posturing if you want. I call it it pushing back on infanticide.

When a child makes it out of the mother’s womb despite the best efforts of an abortionist, does that child have a right – an independent right, not contingent on the mother’s or doctor’s wishes – to be protected and nurtured? Not according to Gov. Northam, among others. On February 14, President Trump lent his bully pulpit to a group of people whose message is very different from the Governor’s.

President Trump welcomed the abortion survivors a few days after the U.S. Senate failed to advance a Born-Alive Infants Protection Act. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) blocked a unanimous consent resolution on the Act. She later tweeted “I’m continuing to stand strong with women, their doctors, and the medical community against the Senate Republicans’ shameless attacks on women’s health and reproductive rights.” No mention of whether that was an evergreen tweet of hers or one referring directly to the born-alive bill.

Let Sen. Murray and her colleagues try standing strong with Ms. Ohden.

From Ms. Ohden via Facebook:

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. It seems like the world is having a conversation about abortion, children surviving abortions, and they don’t realize or acknowledge that there are a group of people who know all too well what everyone is talking about. 

Don’t have a conversation about abortion without those who have survived it. Don’t have a conversation about us, without us. 

Listen to our voices. Share our stories. We’re not hypothetical cases. We’re human beings.

We live in a time when abortion defenders are prepared to oppose policies mandating care for children who survive abortion. I’ve watched legislators in my own state defeat bills that include born-alive protections. The word infanticide may still have an unsavory odor, but the act itself is in danger of being sanitized as a “reproductive right.”

Wherever that happens, remember what Melissa Ohden says: Listen to our voices.

Head over to my blog Leaven for the Loaf for a link to Congressional testimony by survivors of the “dreaded complication.”

Ellen Kolb
Ellen Kolb

Ellen Kolb writes about the life issues at Leaven for the Loaf and EllenKolb.com.

Keep DaTechGuy Blog going with a hit to DaTipJar. Thanks!