Gosnell’s Mother’s Day Massacre

The news of the horrors committed by abortionist Kermit Gosnell is finally getting some visibility. Many pro-life advocates wrote about it when the Philadelphia Grand Jury issued a report on Gosnell and his clinics back in January 2011. I blogged about it here. My first take on the lack of coverage was that, on some level, everyone knows it’s horribly true and, hence, no one wants to hear it. Too disturbing.


Kermit Gosnell

Today’s column by James Taranto in The Wall Street Journal might be the best piece I’ve read on the topic even though Taranto supports abortion in some cases. He includes a story about Gosnell’s early abortion activities:

One of the strongest practical arguments in favor of the Roe regime is that abortion has been around since time immemorial and outlawing it only drove it underground, leading women to endanger themselves by seeking out the services of back-alley quacks. The Philadelphia grand jurors recounted a powerful example from their own city’s history.

It was called the Mother’s Day Massacre. A young Philadelphia doctor “offered to perform abortions on 15 poor women who were bused to his clinic from Chicago on Mother’s Day 1972, in their second trimester of pregnancy.” The women didn’t know that the doctor “planned to use an experimental device called a ‘super coil’ developed by a California man named Harvey Karman.”

A colleague of Karman’s Philadelphia collaborator described the contraption as “basically plastic razors that were formed into a ball. . . . They were coated into a gel, so that they would remain closed. These would be inserted into the woman’s uterus. And after several hours of body temperature, . . . the gel would melt and these . . . things would spring open, supposedly cutting up the fetus.”

Nine of the 15 Chicago women suffered serious complications. One of them needed a hysterectomy. The following year, the Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade. It would be 37 more years before the Philadelphia doctor who carried out the Mother’s Day Massacre would go out of business. His name is Kermit Gosnell.

Back-alley abortions were indisputably a problem before 1973. That’s no defense of the Roe regime, which failed to solve it.

Mother’s Day. If that doesn’t suggest a sick and twisted mind, I don’t know what does.

The Grand Jury Report discusses the Mother’s Day Massacre on pages 96-97. Dave Andrusko wrote about it last month. The accounts surrounding Gosnell’s more recent abortion activities are bad enough; but when one stops to realize that Roe only enabled him to legally engage in butchery, one can’t help but wonder (again) just how abortion, legalized or not, helps women. Instead we are faced with another story of a man who clearly didn’t care about women and may have even hated them. (Mother’s Day!) Given the Grand Jury’s findings, he didn’t like minority women.

We come full circle. Why isn’t there more media coverage of the Gosnell case? Because on some level most people know it’s true. Regardless of their beliefs about abortion, people know it’s not a great thing for women and many would rather pretend the whole mess didn’t exist. Incidentally,  the creator of the super coil, Harvey Karman, is remembered for his “safe” abortion techniques, as if the women from the Mother’s Day Massacre didn’t count or simply never existed.


Categories:Abortion Pro-Life

6 thoughts on “Gosnell’s Mother’s Day Massacre

  1. [...] that he experimented on unwitting poor women, maiming several of them in what is termed the Mothers Day Massacre. Just like they didn’t care that, across this country, dozens of clinics just like his [...]

  2. [...] blades were gel-coated and laid down. The device was designed so that when the woman’s body temperature melted the gel, the blades sprang up to cut the baby, thus inducing the [...]

  3. [...] blades were gel-coated and laid down. The device was designed so that when the woman’s body temperature melted the gel, the blades sprang up to cut the baby, thus inducing the [...]

  4. Susan says:

    I agree with Janese, he simply found a career that allowed him to practice his sick sadistic rituals on women and babies. (How sad that some of it was legal in our country.) How else can you explain the filthy surroundings, the severed feet in jars, the reusing of disposable instruments. This man HATES women and children. He is evil.

  5. Janese says:

    It is my belief that Kermit Gosnell is a demented serial killer & hater of women and babies. He found a career path that enabled him to indulge in his natural proclivities. I am horrified & disgusted by these stories, but even more disgusted that the national media isn’t giving it the attention it deserves.

  6. Dan says:

    Pia, I hope you and many others continue to write about the horrors and atrocities committed by Gosnell and others. When these evils are exposed and brought to the light more people will grow to understand what abortion truly is and does. (John 3:20)

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