By Cheryl Sullenger
Last night, PBS aired the controversial movie “After Tiller,” that focuses on four abortionists who supply very late abortions. It was obvious that one of the primary purposes of the movie was to generate sympathy for late-term abortions that are deeply opposed by the vast majority of Americans – even among those who identify as supporting abortion under other circumstances.
A better title for the movie might be “Sympathy for the Devil.”
The four abortionists that were the focus of the film all conduct abortions throughout the ninth month of pregnancy: LeRoy Carhart who operates out of Germantown Reproductive Health Services in Germantown, Maryland; California abortionists Shelley Sella and Susan Robinson, who work at Southwestern Women’s options in Albuquerque, New Mexico; and Boulder, Colorado’s Warren Hern, who runs the unimaginatively named Boulder Abortion Clinic.
None of them are saints.
Carhart, Sella, and Robinson worked for George Tiller at his infamous late-term abortion facility in Wichita, Kansas. Tiller used to boast that it was the largest free-standing late-term facility outside Communist China where abortions are forced on those who fail to comply with its rigid population-control policies.
At that time, Kansas law required a second, unaffiliated physician to concur with the abortionist that post-viability abortions met the legal standard of posing “substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function” of the pregnant woman.
Prior to Tiller’s death, there was a pending 11-count petition against Tiller’s license based on a complaint filed by Operation Rescue. A nearly identical disciplinary petition, based on the same complaint, eventually led to the revocation of the medical license of Ann Kristin Neuhaus, Tiller’s associate who signed off on each post-viability abortion done by Tiller’s abortionists.
The Board found that Neuhaus used phony mental health diagnoses to justify the abortions, which fell well below the standard of patient care and failed to meet the legal standard of posing a “substantial and irreversible impairment” to the patients. This made the late-term abortions done by Tiller, Carhart, Sella, and Robinson illegal.
Furthermore, in the history of Kansas where Tiller and his associates worked for years, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, which is tasked with maintaining abortion statistics, shows that out of thousands of post-viability abortions done there, no incident has ever been reported of a woman receiving a late-term abortion to save her life. Not one.
“After Tiller” discussed the difficult situations that late-term abortion patients are said to face.
In states where the “After Tiller” abortionists currently operate, there are no restrictions on late-term abortions and even Robinson admitted in the film that they are not hearing the “compelling stories” in New Mexico that they supposedly heard in Kansas.
This means that late-term abortions are being done for non-life-threatening and medically unnecessary reasons.
There can be little doubt that Tiller’s medical license would have been suspended or revoked had he lived. He certainly had to understand that Neuhaus was providing spurious mental health diagnoses for patients at his facility, and if he didn’t, that would have made him as incompetent as Neuhaus.
Meanwhile, Carhart, Sella, and Robinson continue to subject women to substandard patient care.
In Albuquerque, Sella and Robinson sent at least 14 women to the emergency room before city officials decided to stop releasing 911 calls to the public.
In one case, Sella botched an abortion on a 35-week pregnant woman that resulted in a life-threatening ruptured uterus. In action reminiscent of the political corruption that protected Tiller in Kansas, Sella was inexplicably exonerated from wrong-dong in that case even though it was admitted during the disciplinary proceedings that the late-term abortion process fell below accepted obstetrical medical standards and that the patient’s risk factors were completely ignored that should have contraindicated the outpatient surgical abortion process used by Sella.
In just the past two years, Carhart has been responsible for eight abortion-related medical emergencies in Nebraska and Maryland, including the death of Jennifer Morbelli from complications to a 33-week abortion. Carhart was earlier involved in the abortion-related death of 19-year old Christin Gilbert in Kansas.
Volumes could be written of the adverse incidents documented by Operation Rescue involving the Tiller trio of abortionists featured in “After Tiller.”
There was the secret party paid for by Kansas taxpayers where former Gov. Kathleen Sebelius wined and dined Tiller, his abortion protégés, and his entire abortion clinic staff all while they were under an active and very public criminal investigation that eventually resulted in two rounds of charges by two different Attorneys General.
Then there was the time a former clinic worker confessed in our office that Sella had, in the same form as convicted murder Kermit Gosnell, intentionally killed a baby born alive during a late-term abortion. Unfortunately, she recanted when questioned by police saying, she “didn’t want to get involved.”
The movie’s attempts to illicit sympathy for late-term abortionists and the barbaric procedures that they employ that involved injecting a baby with poison to stop his or her heart, sending the woman into labor and then delivering the dead child after stabbing the head and suctioning out the brains. Certainly, there can be no sympathy for this cold-hearted and brutal act.
Despite the attempt to invoke support for heinous late-term abortions, the “After Tiller” filmmakers could not disguise the obvious negative moral and emotional consequences to taking an innocent human life inside the womb. Civilized and compassionate people simply do not kill people because they are sick or inconvenient like one might put down a diseased animal or destroy a mad dog. Likewise, we shouldn’t heartlessly kill babies in the womb who may not be physically perfect or are inconvenient, either.
Some things are just wrong, and abortion is one of them, no matter how much the abortion cartel tries to sugar-coat it. We can have no more sympathy for abortion than we would for any other evil act.
Troy Newman and Cheryl Sullenger have authored a new book, Abortion Free, that details their experiences with Tiller in Wichita, Kansas, and explains how anyone can use proven methods to end abortion one community at a time. Abortion Free can be pre-ordered at the WorldNetDaily Superstore and Amazon.com.