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Explaining to pro-abortionists why pro-lifers refuse to be complicit in abortion

by | Nov 17, 2011

By Dave Andrusko

Try to imagine you’re a pro-abortionist. Begin with the understanding that much of what we say is literally incomprehensible to them. Everything from the sanctity of life to the injunction not to practice violence on helpless human beings to the equality of all members of the human family—to the pro-abortion mind we might as well be speaking in Swahili.

But as I look at the fight between twelve nurses—who refuse to participate in abortions– and one of the largest hospitals in New Jersey—which insists they aren’t really asking them to participate in abortions– it has occurred to me that there is something else that is totally alien to the pro-abortion mind.

That pro-lifers will not be involved no way no how in abortion. They will not be “complicit.” To the abortion mind this is beyond splitting hairs, it is utter rubbish.

That came to mind as I read a piece on the pro-abortion blog Robin Marty included part of a post that ran at national review online written by Matt Bowman, the attorney for the nurses, which included a response from the attorneys for the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ).

“According to the National Review, the real issue might be that the nurses and the hospital have two entirely different definitions of ‘participating’ in a procedure,” Marty writes.

Here’s the operative quote from the hospital’s attorneys:

“Please be advised that the plaintiff-nurses named in the above-referenced lawsuit are not required to assist in abortion procedures. Rather, they are required to provide patients who have elected to terminate their pregnancies with pre-operative care (not including the administration of induction medications), and postoperative care. The pre- and post-operative care provided to these patients is of the same nature as that provided to patients who have undergone other surgical procedures.”

Thus Marty rhetorically asks, “But could it be that everyone is telling their truth?” (She doesn’t mean that, of course, but….). She concludes, “Now the question is, whose definition will stand up in court?”

What to say?

To be clear, Federal law is clear, as is New Jersey law: “[B]oth prohibit forcing any health-care employees to take part in abortions,” as Matt Bowen wrote.

Equally clear is that the hospital had no regard for the moral objections of the nurses. “[W]hen one of the twelve nurses objected to assisting abortions on the grounds of her religious beliefs, a supervisor responded that UMDNJ has ‘no regard for religious beliefs’ of nurses who object to participating in abortions, even though the supervisor admitted that the abortions are elective,” according to Bowman.

Or, as the lawsuit explains it,

When [Sharon] Danquah reiterated her religious objections to training in or assisting abortions that morning before the cases began, Defendant  [Tammy] Ludwig responded that [the hospital] has ‘no regard for religious beliefs’ of nurses who so object” and “that “’everyone on this floor is required when assigned to do TOPs [termination of pregnancies; abortions]

And it should not get lost that the nurses did not initiate the controversy. UMDNJ, which had been performing abortions for decades without forcing nurses to violate their religious beliefs, changed its policy “out of the blue.” The new policy? Take training in abortions (which means actually assisting in abortions, not merely watch)or be fired.

And the policy change was not hypothetical; it was already having an effect when the lawsuit was filed, contrary to what the hospital insisted. According to Bowman, several nurses had already been compelled to participate “by threatening them with termination”—and if nothing is done, “the hospital is planning to force Lorna [Mendoza] and her colleague Julita Ching to assist abortions this Friday, Nov. 4, despite the hospital’s crystal-clear legal obligations not to coerce them.”

Just how high-handed the hospital had been is illustrated by the case of one nurse who was assigned “to train for abortion without warning or notice to her,” according the lawsuit. “She was first informed when she arrived for her regular morning shift on October 28, 2011.”

So, UMDNJ had long performed abortions but then institutes a policy change that took full aim at the nurses’ religious objections to assisting in abortion; a threat to fire them if they did not comply; topped off by the insistence that if there is enough physical distance between the actual dismemberment of the child, then nurses aren’t “assisting” in an abortion.

While pro-abortionists like Marty would love to draw the line in the sand there, pro-lifers refuse out of (and this drives anti-lifers nuts) conscience. They—we—refuse as much as is humanly possible to be complicit in abortion.

If my tax dollars were paying for abortions, I’m presumably not within miles or hundreds of miles of where an abortion is taking place. Thirty years ago even the Supreme Court understood that abortion IS different from other “medical procedures” which is why we have the Hyde Amendment.

I have no idea how many nurses there are at UMDNJ, but no doubt there are many with no objections who would assist. But if there none, that does not change the crux of the nurses’ case.

One nurse told Fox News & Commentary that “It felt like the whole world crashed on me.” To pro-abortionists this is ridiculous. She’s not actually handing the killing tools to the abortionist or cleaning up the bloody mess afterwards, she’s merely….”participating.”

Congressman Chris Smith put it succinctly at a press conference with the nurses held Monday in front of the hospital.

In pursuit of an illegal and highly unethical policy to coerce its own nurses to participate in abortions including support activities such as pre- and post-procedure complicity in abortion, UMDNJ has not only imposed irreparable harm and suffering on its own nurses, but has willfully and recklessly put federal funding for the institution at risk.

Because the nurses recognize the innate value and dignity and preciousness of the child in the womb and have refused to participate or be complicit in an act of violence against a vulnerable child, they are punished.

Because the nurses have deep religious and moral convictions and believe women deserve better than abortion, they are punished.

Because the nurses are compassionate and care deeply for every human life, regardless of age or condition of dependence, they are punished.

The illegal and highly unethical policy of coercion by UMDNJ must   cease immediately.

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Categories: Pro-Lifers