FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 31, 2012
CONTACT: Apryl Marie Fogel - AprylMarie.Fogel@mail.house.gov
Dr. Gosar Condemns Abortion Genocide: Disgusted at Congress’ Failure to Protect the Unborn and Ban Pain Capable Abortions
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Dr. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) released the following statement after the House failed to pass the District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, (H.R. 3803), legislation that would ban abortion in the District of Columbia after 20 weeks of gestation. Currently, the nation’s capital makes the procedure legal for any reason during any stage of pregnancy.
“I am deeply saddened and disgusted that this simple, humane and moral bill failed to pass the House today. I find it deplorable that our nation’s capital allows the genocide of its unborn children,” said Dr. Gosar. “These procedures undeniably rob the world of a human life in a most cruel fashion – and can often cause severe complications and health risks for the child’s mother. It is worth noting that these procedures are more lucrative to the abortion industry, however. The right thing to do is to ban these procedures.”
“Just yesterday, a federal judge upheld Arizona state law to ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, unless the mother’s life is at risk. As a father and a health care provider, I applaud Arizona in protecting the unborn from ending their short precious lives in excruciating pain. I hope that those in Congress who supported the District of Columbia’s genocide can one day join me and other pro-life members of Congress in banning these gruesome and inhumane procedures, which have no place in a civil society.”
The District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is backed by extensive evidence that unborn children can feel pain by 20 weeks of pregnancy. A common method of performing an abortion on a child at this stage is draining amniotic fluid from the mother’s uterus and using a metal clamp to dismember the child limb by limb – severing the head last. The Arizona federal court upheld the prohibition of abortions after this time frame based chiefly on new scientific evidence showing that in fact, children at this fetal stage were “pain capable.” Arizona now joins six other states in limiting or banning late term abortions based on fetal pain.
Congressman Gosar has served as a dentist and health care provider for over 25 years. As a pro-life member of Congress, Gosar believes in protecting the unborn and upholding the sanctity of life.
Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act
Protecting the unborn from the pain of abortion
Even those who believe that abortion in most cases is morally permissible should agree that we must not inflict needless suffering on other living things. To do so is cruel and inhumane. We do not consider treating animals in the barbaric way that abortion treats pain-capable unborn human beings. People on both sides of the abortion debate should agree that the gratuitous suffering of the human fetus is incompatible with a decent and humane society.
"Without question, [abortion at 20 weeks] is a dreadfully painful experience for any infant subjected to such a surgical procedure."
— Dr. Robert J. White Neurosurgeon, Case Western Reserve University
A wealth of anatomical, behavioral and physiological evidence shows that the developing unborn child (i.e., the human fetus) is capable of experiencing tremendous pain by 20 weeks post-fertilization.
Anatomical: Pain receptors are present throughout the unborn child’s entire body by no later than 16 weeks after fertilization, and nerves link these receptors to the brain’s thalamus and subcortical plate by no later than 20 weeks. For unborn children, says Dr. Paul Ranalli, a neurologist at the University of Toronto, 20 weeks is a “uniquely vulnerable time, since the pain system is fully established, yet the higher level pain-modifying system has barely begun to develop.” As a result, unborn babies at this age probably feel pain more intensely than adults.
Behavioral: By 8 weeks after fertilization, the unborn child reacts to touch. By 20 weeks post-fertilization, the unborn child reacts to stimuli that would be recognized as painful if applied to an adult human—for example, by recoiling. Surgeons entering the womb to perform corrective procedures on unborn children have seen those babies flinch, jerk and recoil from sharp objects and incisions. In addition, ultrasound technology shows that unborn babies at 20 weeks and earlier react physically to outside stimuli such as sound, light and touch.
Physiological: The application of painful stimuli is associated with significant increases in the unborn child’s stress hormones. During fetal surgery, anesthesia is routinely administered to the unborn baby and is associated with a decrease in stress hormones compared to their level when painful stimuli is applied without such anesthesia. More evidence and complete documentation of fetal pain is available at www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.
The pain of abortion
The most common abortion procedure used after the first trimester of pregnancy, including at 20 weeks, is dilation and evacuation (D & E). This method involves dismembering the unborn child. The U.S. Supreme Court (in its 2007 Gonzales v. Carhart decision) describes the D & E procedure as follows: “The doctor grips a fetal part with the forceps and pulls it back through the cervix and vagina, continuing to pull even after meeting resistance from the cervix. The friction causes the fetus to tear apart. For example, a leg might be ripped off the fetus as it is pulled through the cervix and out of the woman. The process of evacuating the fetus piece by piece continues until it has been completely removed.”
"The neural pathways are present for pain to be experienced quite early by unborn babies." — Dr. Steven Calvin, Perinatologist, Chair of the Program in Human Rights and Medicine, University of Minnesota
Fetal pain acknowledged in Minnesota law
Woman's Right to Know requires women considering abortion to be informed that "some experts have concluded that the unborn child feels physical pain after 20 weeks gestation."
requires women considering abortion after 20 weeks gestation to be informed "whether or not an anesthetic or analgesic would eliminate or alleviate organic pain to the unborn child caused by the particular method of abortion to be employed."
Legislation is necessary
The fact of fetal pain is already established in Minnesota law, but pain-sensitive unborn children remain unprotected.
The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act would prohibit abortion after 20 weeks from fertilization in order to protect pain-capable unborn children from excruciating deaths. (There are exceptions when abortion is necessary to save the life of the mother or to avert a serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.)
Similar legislation was passed and signed into law in the state of Nebraska in 2010. To date, the Nebraska law has not been challenged in court.
Join MCCL in defending human dignity by working to pass the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.
Read more at: Stand True
“A society will be judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members – the last, the least, the littlest.” Abortion,... We will be judged as individuals by what we did and did not do!