By Dr. Heather Bozant Witcher, Clarion Herald
My husband has always been pro-life, but he’s never been extremely comfortable talking about it. That is, not until the reality of our pregnancy hit him.
I came home one afternoon to find him watching an online lecture given by Dr. Anthony Levatino to students at Virginia Tech. Dr. Levatino is an anti-abortion activist and an OB-GYN who formerly performed abortions. It wasn’t until his 6-year-old daughter was struck by a car and killed that he questioned his procedures.
Until that crisis, he admits, he had never stopped to consider the body parts on the table as the parts of someone’s son or daughter. But then, his viewpoint changed, and he realized he could no longer support abortion.
Listening to the lecture, in many ways, affirmed our beliefs. In particular, given the recent slate of legislative and political discussions surrounding the value of a child’s life, it gave even greater insight into the lies being told about abortion being the means of saving a woman’s life.
Abortion is never medically necessary. Recently, over 1,000 OB-GYNs and maternal healthcare experts signed what has been called the Dublin Declaration. The declaration clearly states: “As experienced practitioners and researchers in obstetrics and gynecology, we affirm that direct abortion – the purposeful destruction of the unborn child – is not medically necessary to save the life of a woman.”
Further, the document elaborates: “We uphold that there is a fundamental difference between abortion and necessary medical treatments that are carried out to save the life of the mother, even if such treatment results in the loss of life of her unborn child.”
What does this mean? Abortion supporters have claimed that there are certain medical situations in which abortion is necessary to save the life of the woman, including instances of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, pre-eclampsia and other life-threatening issues.
When pointedly asked this question in his lecture, Dr. Levatino was straight-forward: “I delivered the baby.” Whether through early induction or through C-section, the baby can and should be delivered by any medical professional who follows the Hippocratic Oath.
Killing the baby offers no medical advantages to the mother. By separating the baby from the mother, the supporters of the Dublin Declaration emphasize that there is a fundamental difference between a doctor attempting to save the life of a pre-term baby and the procedure of abortion, which intentionally and violently takes a life.
The difference is simple – Are we attempting to save a life or violently destroy life?
The difference, in fact, is placed on value. Which life, ultimately, is valued?
According to the law, it’s all about definitions. But we’re more than the law. As human beings we’re governed by morality and ethical considerations. And, in the end, aren’t all lives worth saving?
Dr. Heather Bozant Witcher can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.