I've been hearing a great deal about fetal experimentation and some of the possible medical breakthroughs that could be realized as a result of this research. Do you think it is ethical to "harvest" tissue from fetuses if it means we'll find the medical solution to debilitating diseases?
There is no hypothetical medical discovery that will justify the horrible procedure by which organs are "harvested" from a tiny human being. If most of us had to watch the grisly task of cannibalizing the body of a baby, it would sicken and outrage us. At the risk of distressing my readers, I am going to describe that procedure. Be forewarned! What I'm about to write will be disturbing.
First, it is important to remember that a child born alive presents a major problem to an abortionist. It is the ultimate "complication," because legally, every effort must be made to keep a breathing newborn alive. That's why the physician usually crushes the fetus's head while still in the uterus. However, a baby who is born dead is of less value to researchers because brain tissue and other organs quickly deteriorate when deprived of oxygen. Thus, the abortionist must employ a means of extracting the body parts and brain matter from a living baby who is not yet expelled from the birth canal.
The method is called "dilatation and extraction," or "partial-birth abortion." It is grotesque beyond imagination. It occurs on fully viable babies, weighing as much as six to eight pounds. Over a period of two days, the cervix is dilated. Then an ultrasound device and forceps are used to reach in and grab the baby's feet. The little body is pulled into the birth canal until only the head remains in the cervix. Next the abortionist grasps the nape of the neck and stabs the back of the skull with blunt scissors. A device called a cannula is then inserted into the wound, and the brain material is sucked out. If kidneys or other organs are desired, they are removed while the child is still partially in the vagina. Initially at least, these surgical procedures are performed on a live baby who has not specifically been anesthetized. The dismembered and lifeless body is then delivered the other few inches.
If puppies or kittens were subjected to such cruel treatment, the protests of the animal-rights people would be heard around the world--and I would be one of the most vocal.
In this instance, however, we're dealing not with animals but with human beings of inestimably greater worth, who are created in the image of the Creator. How anyone with the remotest sympathy for the sanctity of life could play God with the destiny of these little ones is beyond all comprehension. Without question, they comprise the most disadvantaged and defenseless segment in our culture today. And the excuse for this evil? It is the remote possibility of some distant medical breakthrough--or more commonly--for the convenience of the physician in late-term abortions! I will oppose it for as long as I have breath within my body.