BLOGThe Supreme Court Could Put a Stop to This Brutal Abortion Procedure

By Denise Burke Posted on: | February 05, 2019

With each passing day, the callousness and depravity of the abortion industry and its most ardent supporters are ever more on display.

Many Americans were rightly horrified when New York Governor Andrew Cuomo marked the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade by signing into law a measure that goes far beyond what the Supreme Court allowed in Roe. The “Reproductive Health Act” legalizes abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. It also makes laws safeguarding the health and safety of women, such as a requirement that a licensed physician perform the abortion, impermissible.

On the day this act was signed into law, Governor Cuomo ordered One World Trade Center and other landmarks to be lit in pink to celebrate the new law. The cold-heartedness of celebrating an unfettered right to kill unborn children and to put the lives and health of women in danger is just the latest outrage from the abortion industry.

And there has been a lot of outrage.

Planned Parenthood executives have been caught on video haggling over the price of aborted baby parts – and then lying about it. Abortion advocates have fought against laws that require abortionists and abortion facilities to comply with the same health and safety standards as similar outpatient, surgical centers. And the abortion industry has supported laws that allow unborn children to be aborted simply because of their sex, race, or disability.

Equally contemptible is the abortion industry’s continued promotion and defense of the dismemberment abortion procedure, a common and especially brutal type of abortion.

In fact, abortion advocates have defended dismemberment abortions all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, challenging an Alabama law that bans this practice.

Alliance Defending Freedom filed an amicus brief in the Supreme Court this week on behalf of the Christian Medical & Dental Associations. The brief urges the Court to review a lower court’s decision that struck down this ban.

Dismemberment abortion involves what a federal court has described as “tearing apart and extracting piece-by-piece from the uterus what was until then a living unborn child. This is usually done during the 15 to 18 week stage of development, at which time the unborn child’s heart is already beating.”

According to the National Abortion Federation, the dismemberment abortion procedure is the most prevalent method of late-term abortion in the US, accounting for 96 percent of all second trimester abortions. This means that more than 75,000 unborn children die each year after being torn limb-from-limb in the womb.

Despite recognizing, that there is “an actual and substantial interest in lessening … the gruesomeness and brutality of dismemberment abortions,” a lower court struck down the law.

But this Alabama law doesn’t only protect unborn babies, it also protects women.

As we point out in our brief, there is compelling medical evidence that late-term abortions pose serious maternal health risks. In fact, the dismemberment abortion procedure accounts for "a disproportionate amount of abortion-related complications and deaths."

The Supreme Court has repeatedly recognized that states have legitimate interests in protecting the health of women. The ADF brief asks the Supreme Court to hear the case, affirm this interest, and recognize that the Alabama law furthers its responsibility to protect women from a dangerous and inhumane procedure.

Denise Burke

Senior Counsel

Denise Burke serves as senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom, where she is a member of the Center for Life.

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