Kermit Gosnell Trial: GOP Can't Successfully Use the Case to Smear Pro-Choice Movement

When one is on trial for murdering eight different “babies” by plunging scissors in to their necks, there might be the expectation of the story being covered by national news outlets.

The case of Kermit Gosnell and his women’s medical center nicknamed “house of horrors” has taken time to receive the attention that several believe the trial deserves. Gosnell is accused of killing fetuses that were still alive after their abortions were completed. At this moment in time, he is charged with four counts of first degree murder and one count of third degree murder (originally was charged with eight counts of murder). Many of the critics from the right wing are claiming foul and this is just another example of liberal bias.  Groups from both the pro-choice and pro-life moments have expressed discontent with the lack of news coverage, but some fear how the right-wing media is covering the case. The right wing media is taking this opportunity to not only put Kermit Gosnell and his abortion practices on the stand, but as a chance to put the pro-choice movement as a whole on trial.

There is no question that the practices used by Gosnell at his medical center were unsanitary, unethical, and sickening; but this is by no way a representation of women’s medical clinics as a whole. Conservative blogs and groups are attempting to capitalize on recent Gosnell news coverage by arguing that it is common practice and the liberal news media does not care. Conservative radio talk show host, Rush Limbaugh, stated on his April 18 show, “He was doing what State Senator Obama voted for back in Illinois. Gosnell was killing babies who survived abortions. In unspeakable ways. In unspeakable, filthy conditions.” 

Limbaugh finds a way to connect Gosnell to President Obama and rant that the media is not reporting the trial due to the fact that it does not fit in with the Democrat’s party agenda. Conservative blogger for LifeNewsJudie Brown, writes that “the mainstream media has done a poor job of covering this man and his evil deeds because its agenda does not include honesty on the subject of abortion.” Pro-life groups are claiming that abortion is not safe and the most famous abortion case Roe v. Wade has not brought women to the equality they believe they deserve. 

Almost all of these statements are not supported with facts, but said as propaganda to disparage supporters of pro-choice. The Gosnell trial has provided a pathway for more rhetoric on the so called “awful truths” on abortion and the apathy people have towards unborn children. The right-wing can try to put the pro-choice movement on trial, but it is a losing case.          

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Mary Carswell

I am graduating senior at SUNY Oneonta whose major is communication studies and political science. I have an interest in political campaigns, feminism and social justice issues.

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