Slate has a good summary of the issues involved and has a wonderful conclusion about what the full video adds, “the revelation that the fetus came out of a woman’s body.”
Greg Cunningham, the curator of the illegally obtained video and the founder of the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform, told Time magazine that it had to be an abortion “owing to the lack of medical treatment offered to the fetus.” The statement underscores the fact that Cunningham has no idea what he is talking about as the fetus is 17-18 weeks and hence pre viable so no one would render care. It is highly atypical to offer neonatal care before 23 weeks. A neonatologist who attempt to resuscitate a 17 week delivery would be considered unethical.
It is easy to see how someone who has no obstetrical training might think this could be something other than a previable premature delivery. Cunningham’s statements clearly show he is no medical expert and isn’t in the position to explain it. However, I am.
Here are all the issues with the video from start to finish:
- It is illegally and clandestinely shot. I feel very badly for the poor woman in question and wonder why Fiorina and our elected officials are not as outraged as I am about her violation and exploitation. I had second thoughts about watching it myself given the lack of consent from the woman, however, I felt if I could end the conversation about it faster by weighing in. Time magazine or Slate have links.
- The prep of the patient. The physician (I’m assuming) pours surgical prep/cleaner on the woman’s perineum. We don’t do that anymore for spontaneous deliveries or for abortions that involve induction of labor. This tells me this video is at least 15 years old or from another country.
- The delivery. It is a spontaneous delivery as the operator waits for the fetus to be expelled. This is what we do with a previable premature delivery. If this were shot mid way through a 2nd trimester abortion (meaning the Laminaria in the cervix, which are osmotic sticks that help the cervix dilate, had just been removed) it is highly unlikely the operator would have waited for a spontaneous expulsion.
- The cord is clamped on the fetal side. If this were an abortion it would just be cut. Really. No one ever does this with an abortion as it serves no purpose.
- Waiting for the placenta. The clamp is left on the placental end and at the end of the video the placenta still hasn’t delivered. If this were an abortion the placenta would be removed with suction immediately, no one would wait 11 minutes. Ever. Every abortion clinic has a suction machine.
- There is no proof this video is in a Planned Parenthood clinic never mind in the United States. This could easily be an operating room.
Instead of wasting tax payer dollars over highly edited videos our government should be investigating who illegally taped this woman’s delivery. If Cunningham says he didn’t take the video then of course he also can’t be sure what was going on. He can’t have it both ways.