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St. Louis, MO, United States
What the name sez, Christian, conservative, 2nd amendment supporter. Physician, wife, daughter and loving mother.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Point Counterpoint in Florida

In October, 2008, in Homestead, Florida the world's most premature baby celebrated her 2nd birthday. Amilia Taylor was born at 21 weeks of gestation and weighed only 10 ounces. She is truly a miracle, but in a clinic outside of Miami, Florida, at 23 weeks of gestation another baby was born alive after an abortion gone wrong and was quickly exsanguinated and tossed into the trash even as she struggled for breath. Sycloria Williams went to a Miami clinic for a midtrimester abortion and after having laminaria stents placed in the cervix to dilate it, was given prostaglandin to induce contractions and sent to a clinic to await the delivery. When she rapidly progressed to deliver her baby, there were no qualified medical personnel in attendance. Her baby was liveborn and began to struggle to breathe. An unqualified attendant cut the cord and placed the baby into a plastic bag with the placenta and disposed of the body in the trash. The decomposing remains were discovered one week later. At autopsy, there was air in the infant's lungs, verifying that the infant had been breathing prior to death. While this unfortunate situation is murder, it serves to underscore the problem of abortion in the 21st century and the schizophrenic moral dilemma that it sets up.

Back in the day of Roe v. Wade, neither of these babies would have survived even with the best of medical care. Today, one woman's abortion is another's beloved child. If we can make it possible for babies of 21 to 23 weeks of gestation to survive, how is it that we can also condone the abortion/murder of fetuses at these same gestational ages?

As non-medical a source as Wikipedia contains the following information about the lower limit of fetal viability:


Human fetus, age unknown

The lower limit of viability is approximately five months gestational age, and usually later.[35] According to The Developing Human:

Viability is defined as the ability of fetuses to survive in the extrauterine environment... There is no sharp limit of development, age, or weight at which a fetus automatically becomes viable or beyond which survival is assured, but experience has shown that it is rare for a baby to survive whose weight is less than 500 gm or whose fertilization age is less than 22 weeks. Even fetuses born between 26 and 28 weeks have difficulty surviving, mainly because the respiratory system and the central nervous system are not completely differentiated... If given expert postnatal care, some fetuses weighing less than 500 gm may survive; they are referred to as extremely low birth weight or immature infants.... Prematurity is one of the most common causes of morbidity and prenatal death.[36]

During the past several decades, neonatal care has improved with advances in medical science, and therefore the limit of viability has have moved earlier.[37] As of 2006, the two youngest children to survive premature birth are thought to be James Elgin Gill (born on 20 May 1987 in Ottawa, Canada, at 21 weeks and 5 days gestational age),[38][39] and Amillia Taylor (born on 24 October 2006 in Miami, Florida, at 21 weeks and 6 days gestational age).[40][41] Both children were born just under 20 weeks from fertilization, or a few days past the midpoint of an average full-term pregnancy. Despite their premature births, both developed into healthy children.

President Obama has said that one of his Presidential goals will be to sign the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) which will effectively take away the restrictions to abortion in this country. Since he also was against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act, scenes such as those involving Sycloria Williams' baby will be allowed to play out again and again without apparent repercussions. He has surrounded himself with advisors of like mind and his judicial nominees stand in lock step with him in this area.

We have given away the moral compass of our country in slow sequential concessions and baby steps so that now we are standing on the precipice and have no where else to go except to jump off to our own certain destruction....and we did it all by ourselves.

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