Grand jury report says Gosnell case is partially a result of pro-abortion politics

Drawing by Leonardo da Vinci

Drawing by Leonardo da Vinci

In a thoughtful and compelling article published by The Wall Street Journal, James Taranto argues that the gruesome case of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell illustrates the need to end the legal “Roe regime” of “abortion on demand.” He cites the Philadelphia grand jury report, the writings and comments of pro-abortion activists, the two reigning U.S. Supreme Court decisions (Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey), and the personal stories of former pro-abortion activists to make his case.

One of the more particularly noteworthy, and disturbing, quotes from the grand jury report states, in regards to the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s inspection efforts towards Gosnell’s clinic:

After 1993, even that pro forma effort came to an end. Not because of administrative ennui, although there had been plenty. Instead, the Pennsylvania Department of Health abruptly decided, for political reasons, to stop inspecting abortion clinics at all. The politics in question were not anti-abortion, but pro. With the change of administration from Governor [Bob] Casey to Governor [Tom] Ridge, officials concluded that inspections would be “putting a barrier up to women” seeking abortions. Better to leave clinics to do as they pleased, even though, as Gosnell proved, that meant both women and babies would pay.

For those who consider it important to think seriously about the issue of ending the possibility of life that abortion represents, the whole piece is worth a read.

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  • Jason Williams

    Using your the reasoning here, you could just as easily blame the Gosnell incident on the anti Roe side for their tactics to politicize these clinics. No rational person would argue ending inspections was a good idea. Additionally, no rational person would argue that what happened in PA is in even the most remote sense a condemnation of keeping abortion safe and legal by law. It is also too convenient to ignore the fact that before the Roe decision, Gosnell was more of a norm than an isolated incident.

    • Derek Monson


      You need to read the post. What you call “your the (sic) reasoning” is actually the reasoning of the Philadelphia grand jury.

      And as much as you do not prefer that reasoning, the facts support it. The fact is that the Pennsylvania health department stopped performing inspections of abortion clinics due to pro-abortion politics in the 1990’s. It is not unreasonable to think that a proper inspection of Gosnell’s clinic early on could have led to his clinic being shut down, therefore preventing him from killing all those people.

      The grand jury wasn’t making huge logical leaps here. They simply pulled a natural conclusion from the facts of the case. “It’s elementary, my dear [Jason]!” ;)

      Derek Monson

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