Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

For the sake of His sorrowful passion….

January 22nd, 2011, Promulgated by Nerina

have mercy on us and on the whole world.

For those who have the stomach for it, here is the Grand Jury Report in the Dr. Kermit Gosnell case mentioned in my post below. In short, this is the case of a Pennsylvania doctor who has been performing abortions for twenty years under the most squalid conditions and in violation of countless health care regulations and laws.  He has been charged with 8 counts of murder including the killing of babies born alive in  the late stages of pregnancy by “snipping the spinal cord” of these babies.  Horrifically, one worker commented that she played with and admired one of the babies before she then killed it.  Lord, have mercy!  It makes me sick to even contemplate.

And babies were not the only ones to suffer in this house of horrors.  As the report notes:

The medical practice by which he carried out this business was a filthy fraud in which he overdosed his patients with dangerous drugs, spread venereal disease among them with infected instruments, perforated their wombs and bowels – and on two occasions, caused two of their deaths.

This report should shake all of our consciences.  Fact after fact reveals the monstrosity of this man’s actions and the actions of his employees.  But then, why am I or anyone else surprised?  This is the culture we live in.  Our law protects the “right” to kill children and we have protected it for over 30 years to the tune of 50 million dead children.  Already we have pro-abortion apologists saying this story isn’t really about abortion, but about regulatory oversight.  Yet the Grand Jury report acknowledges:

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 Casey to Governor Ridge, officials concluded that inspections would be “putting a barrier up to women” seeking abortions.

Got that?  They didn’t want to put up any barriers to abortion so they decided to forgo any inspections!  They couldn’t have any infractions found because they might impede access to this heinous procedure.  There is plenty of blame to go around in this case as the report reveals.  The State regulatory agencies received complaint after complaint about this so-called “physician” but each time the department of health dismissed them as “meaningless” and found no “pattern of misconduct.”  It didn’t matter that Gosnell had paid out millions of dollars to women damaged by one of his abortion procedures, the department turned a blind eye all to ensure that access to abortion was maintained.

The examples in this report are simply mind-numbing.   At one point the department of  public health received a complaint about the storage of dead babies in the employees’ lunch refrigerator.  Even though the inspector found numerous public health violations, no further actions were taken and Gosnell’s clinic was allowed to continue its horrific slaughter of babies.  One public health employee filed several reports outlining the horrible conditions of the clinic yet they somehow disappeared “into a blackhole.”  More evidence that the State was more interested in facilitating abortion than in protecting the women the clinic was serving.

The report concludes the following:

Bureaucratic inertia is not exactly news.  We understand that.  But we think this was something more.  We think the reason no one acted is because the women in question were poor and of color, because the victims were infants without identities and because the subject was the political football of abortion.

The case is most definitely and primarily about abortion –  and the lengths our culture goes to to protect it.

Wesley J. Smith’s take.

The Anchoress chimes in with some very good questions particularly about the media coverage of the case.

William Saletan talks about “pro-choice absolutism” and how no abortion is a bad abortion to some (even 2nd and 3rd trimester ones)!

Michelle Malkin minces no words.

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20 Responses to “For the sake of His sorrowful passion….”

  1. Louis E. says: is one posting of the Davida Johnson story by the Associated Press (a woman harmed for life by being scared into going to this man’s practice by anti-abortion picketers at Planned Parenthood).
    Louis, be honest about this story. The woman was 6 months pregnant so Planned Parenthood wouldn’t have done the abortion anyway. More likely, it would have referred her to Dr. Gosnell. She was also scared by the bloodied and dazed patient she saw waiting in Gosnell’s waiting room. She changed her mind about the abortion at that point, but the staff didn’t listen to her and aborted her baby against her wishes. is another story about the harm caused by obstructing access to abortion.(And if you want to make that less important,you need to make sure more people have access to contraceptives).
    There is no right to kill children,there is a right to prevent unwanted births…and none of our rights are safe unless zygotes and embryos have no rights at all.

  2. Ben Anderson says:

    the harm caused by obstructing access to abortion

    come on, Louis, how many stories are there like this? I don’t have any numbers, but I’d bet you’d find a lot more women who were helped by sidewalk counselors than those who were “harmed”.

    this story is sick and evil, but somehow I don’t see it getting as much press as say… Gitmo.

  3. snowshoes says:

    Thank you, Nerina for the concise analysis, how sad! Louis, my fellow former zygote, your last phrase is chilling, but sums up the pro death culture, which thankfully is dying out, since you’re not reproducing. (My apologies if you’re being ironic and I’m missing it.) But do you realize that if you insert “negro” in that phrase in place of “zygotes and embryos”, you have the essential logic of the racist slavers, and the modern KKKers. And the evil of the one is the moral equivalent of the other.

    The abortion (and artificial contraception) abolitionists of today are the moral children of the slavery abolitionists of the 1850s, and the pro-choicers of today are the same as the slavers.

    One more time: the scientific analysis of how you came to be a person:

    your mother and father had marital relations, and God created your soul, through His ineffable Will, time out of mind, that you be created at that moment in time, and the egg was fertilized, and there you are! An immortal human person of infinite worth and value, because God willed that you be conceived in the womb of your mother.

    The absolute free Will of God is also at work in any other situation in which the human ovum is fertilized by the human sperm. ANY other situation. We’re in deep moral water here, so we must know our categories. God does not cause evil, but as the scripture says, His Will is as high above our will as the heavens are above the earth. In a sad, sinful situation, He thinks, “Ah, I will put love into that situation, bereft as it is of love, certainly they will recognize My Hand in this!”, and a baby is conceived.

    We as Catholics are charged to recognize that person in the conceived baby at any stage, and to protect him or her. If we do not, we will have to answer to it at the moment of our death when we go before Our Lord Jesus Our Judge. O Mary , Conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee. Amen.

  4. Nativity says:

    Louis, that’s a child you have in your womb.

  5. Nerina says:


    Did you know that 50% of women seeking abortions report using contraception at the time of conception? We have birth control coming out of our ears, for pity’s sake! You can check the abortion-friendly Guttmacher site for verification:

    A study in Australia released in 2008 found that almost 70% of women seeking an abortion reported using contraception at the time of conception:

    With your first point, are you seriously saying that the pro-life witnesses at PP are responsible for the injury to the woman who went to Dr. Gosnell’s office?

    How will giving unborn children our protection from intentional killing (via suction or burning or dismemberment or pithing of brains) affect your rights? If a woman doesn’t want to have a baby (or be an incubator) then she should not be participating in activities that might put her in that position. This is not rocket science.

    Ben, speaking to your point, there is a moderator on Jill Stanek’s blog who continually makes the point that she wishes there had been a sidewalk counselor present on the day she went for an abortion. She thinks had there been someone, she wouldn’t have gone through with it. We see the effect the 40 Days for Life campaign has had. Just look at Abby Johnson – what a story of conversion.

  6. Louis E. says:

    Nerina…so,if contraception is so prone to failure,the need for abortion as a backstop is demonstrated.

    I am quoting the woman as saying the demonstrators outside PP scared her,which led her to seek out Dr. Gosnell instead.Thanks to his injuries to her she has had four miscarriages.

    If a woman can be drafted as an incubator because someone disagrees with her personal belief that she should not complete her pregnancy,what other compulsory uses of our bodies might governments get away with?

    A lot of the discomfort women who have abortions have had is directly caused by the anti-abortionists.

  7. Ben Anderson says:

    I am quoting the woman as saying the demonstrators outside PP scared her,which led her to seek out Dr. Gosnell instead.Thanks to his injuries to her she has had four miscarriages.

    gimme a break. This is like someone blaming a murder on a driver that cut them off.

    If a woman can be drafted as an incubator because someone disagrees

    she drafted herself.

    governments get away with?

    do you have any other “scary” of letting nature run its course?

    A lot of the discomfort women who have abortions have had is directly caused by the anti-abortionists.

    let me guess – this is kind of like Catholic guilt?

  8. Nerina says:


    Sigh. The point about contraception is that many women are already relying on it for prevention of pregnancy and yet it fails – often. You argued (but again, you change your arguments constantly when they are refuted) that more contraception would prevent abortion.

    If the “discomfort” you talk about is getting women to stop and think about what they are going to do or have done then yes. But what about the abortionist? How much more evidence do you need of what damage they can do? For goodness sake you cited the woman who has had 4 miscarriages because of her abortion! Dr. Gosnell is not the only abortionist who causes such damage. This woman could have very well sustained that damage at many abortion facilities. The Anchoress makes this very point – that this case, while horrific in detail and scope (remember, though he is charged with 8 murders, the investigators speculate that hundreds of babies were killed but the doctor destroyed the records so there is no evidence trail), it is very likely not the only one. How many more Dr. Gosnell sets ups are there?

    You seem very concerned about the infringement of your rights. So would you call yourself a total libertarian? Your anti-homosexual marriage stance seems very inconsistent with your arguments demonstrated here.

  9. Louis E. says:

    I’m against false equalities.Embryo does not equal infant.Same-sex relationship does not equal marriage.Those who blind themselves to those differences are poor guides.

  10. Nerina says:

    Okay. Does a baby at 36 weeks gestation equal infant?

  11. Nerina says:

    And why doesn’t same-sex relationship equal marriage?

  12. Christopher says:

    This is good conversation, Louis thanks for providing some insight into the pro-choice arguments.

    The metrics used in that Australian and lifesitenews survey seem a bit fishy. A girl coming to planned parenthood with intentions of aborting is probably more likely going to lie and say her contraception didn’t work than admitting she was irresponsible and not using contraception. She’s already embarrassed enough and feeling like she just wants to get in and out, the last thing she wants is a lecture about contraception before the abortion occurs. Also, the last thing PP wants to do is give a lecture on that cause it’s bad business when each abortion = $$$$.

    I am pro-life but I always enjoy a good discussion to educate myself on opposing points.

  13. Nerina says:

    Christopher, the failure rates of contraception have been documented for years now (all by the Guttmacher institute which is the research arm of Planned Parenthood). They consistently show that ~50% of women report using contraception at the time of an unplanned pregnancy. So if people are not being truthful, they are doing it at a remarkably consistent rate. As for the Australian study, I’m not sure about the methodology and can’t find the actual report through a search. All the Lifesite article says it that it interviewed 3400 women over a ten year period. Again, if people are lying about using birth control (and I’m not discounting that possibility), then they are doing so consistently.

    Some people argue that providing more contraception would prevent abortions. Clearly this is not the case. Others will argue that abortion is even more needed because birth control fails so frequently (it seems Louis argues both positions). I would counter that organizations like Planned Parenthood are well aware of the failure rate of birth control, but still push it on young girls knowing that those girls will soon be coming in for the higher cost abortion. It is a sick business. Birth control is clearly not the answer.

  14. Jim R says:

    Hmmmm…. Embryo doesn’t equal infant. True.

    Infant doesn’t equal adolescent.
    Adolescent doesn’t equal adult.

    Of course they don’t “equal” since they are terms for particular stages of life. The question is does human embryo equal human being? The answer to that is YES because it’s not another creature. It is simply an early stage human being. Check out the embyo’s genetics – it is a human being!!!

  15. Jim R says:

    Let’s also keep in mind that a human embryo, in utero, has a unique genetic make up, separate circulatory system, separate nervous system – indeed it is entirely separate body from the mother. True, it is dependent on the mother for sustenance and oxygen, but inability to feed is not the sine qua non of humanity, nor is an inability to breathe. If that were the test, would it be OK to kill any baby since none of them can feed themselves? What about in years past the polio patients who lived in iron lungs, could they be executed simply because they couldn’t breathe on their own?

    The issue, Louis, is when does a human being become a human being? Some say birth. Well, what are they before that if not human beings? Some say viability. That’s a moving target, and what are they before that? They’re not cats, dogs or slime. From conception they have a full complement of genes and are growing up. Seems like the proper demarcation is when a person has his/her full complement of genes. If you want a later demarcation – which one and why?

  16. Louis E. says:

    A woman’s intestinal flora are also uniquely different genetically from her…and unlike embryos can complete their life cycles without her help.
    It’s not the 36 weeks of gestation,but the birth process,that anoint the foetus as an actual infant/person.(I’m not sure I gestated that long myself,but my C-section,not my gestation,gave me rights).

  17. Matt says:

    It’s official. You’re an idiot.

  18. Gen says:

    “Anoint the foetus”???

    Your argument makes very little sense. I don’t know of any legitimate source (i.e. the Church, Scriptures, science/scientists) who would say that a child is only a child if he happens to emerge from the womb, preferably living. That’s an illogical distinction.

  19. Nerina says:

    Louis, are you REALLY comparing a nascent human being to intestinal flora? Are you really? No wonder we allow the barbaric practice of abortion to continue when so many people are willing to dehumanize vulnerable, defenseless, innocent human beings. Intestinal flora!??

    And you really can’t see your way clear to call a baby at 36 weeks gestation a person? I guess you have no problem with partial-birth abortion. Oh, my.

    I know nothing any of us says will change your mind, but I hope and pray that someday you will be able to see the truth. I would say this thread has run its course.

  20. Dr. K says:

    Haven’t people been charged with double murder for killing a mother carrying an unborn child?

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