Thursday, April 25, 2013

Michelle Goldberg latest to blame Gosnell on lack of access

Michelle Goldberg is the latest of pro-choice writers to attempt to claim the supposed over regulation of abortion clinics led to Gosnell. She claims Karnamaya Mongar was led to Gosnell by the over regulation of abortion as she was turned away from two abortion clinics in Virginia and one in D.C. 
But Mongar, the woman Gosnell is accused of killing, ended up there because she couldn't find a place to have an abortion in Virginia. Now, the doctor's alleged crimes are being used on behalf of laws that will hurt other women like her.

Mongar, a 41-year-old grandmother newly arrived in the United States from a Nepalese refugee camp, looked for a place to end her pregnancy, which was in its second trimester, closer to home. As the Philadelphia Inquirer reported last week, according to her daughter's tearful testimony at the trial, Mongar had been "turned away from two abortion clinics in Virginia and one in Washington, D.C., because she was too far along in her pregnancy." Finally, someone referred her to Gosnell. She died of an overdose of Demerol, a sedative that, according to the Grand Jury report, the doctor favored because it was cheap.
Karnamaya Mongar
First, this shows some of Goldberg's ignorance.  While Virginia has a law which requires second-trimester abortions be performed in hospitals, abortion is not tightly regulated in the District of Columbia.  While NARAL doesn't give them a grade, the only restrictions they list for D.C. are that nurse-midwives can't perform abortions, tax dollars aren't used to pay for abortions, and individuals can refuse to do abortions. 

In fact, there are numerous abortion clinics in D.C. which will do second-trimester abortions.  Washington Surgi Clinic says they do abortion to 26 weeks.  The D.C. Planned Parenthood does abortions thru 19 weeks.  Potomac Family Planning thru 17 weeks.  Abortionist Nathan Bobrow also does abortions thru 17 weeks. 

The reason Mongar went to Gosnell is that the D.C. clinic (that's Goldberg noticeably indescript "someone") referred her there. So, for some reason (maybe Mongar mentioned a shortage of funds?, competition with other local clinics?), the D.C. abortion clinic referred Mongar to Gosnell despite there being at minimum two abortion clinics in D.C. which would have performed an abortion on her (Mongar was 19 weeks pregnant when she died from a drug overdose at Gosnell's clinic).   

Second, this shows how Goldberg isn't thinking clearly.  If Pennsylvania had a second-trimester law like Virginia and enforced it then Gosnell wouldn't have been operating in Philadelphia and Mongar couldn't have gone to him there.  The only reason he was operating there was because pro-choicers concerned about access to abortion clinics put forth the incredibly dangerous policy of not inspecting clinics. 

Who's to say Gosnell wouldn't have been performing abortions in Virginia if the states' policies were reversed?  Who would be to blame then for Mongar's death? 

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