What I Saw at the Abortion

Richard Selzer

Dr. Richard Selzer, 37 years later.

Very interesting article by Sarah Terzo summarizing reporters’ comments after actually seeing abortion.  Reading her piece reminded of an article written by Dr. Richard Selzer years ago, entitled What I Saw at the Abortion.  He talked about the effect of actually seeing an abortion:

And it has happened that you cannot reason with me now.  For what can language do against the truth of what I saw?

More about that in a minute.  First, here are some of the best quotes from Ms. Terzo’s piece:

I felt a profound and unmistakable kinship with the foot and hand in the tray, a kinship so strong it was like the rolling of the sea under my feet.  (Harper’s Magazine author Verlyn Klinkenborg)

But the nurses, medical assistants, and doctors who worked inside procedure rooms … knew that an eleven-week-old POC harbored tiny arms and legs and feet with toes.  (author Sue Hertz, who spent a year observing abortions a busy abortion clinic)  [FAB: POC = products of conception]

I have seen this before. The face of a Russian soldier, lying on a frozen snow covered hill, stiff with death and cold. … A death factory is the same anywhere, and the agony of early death is the same anywhere.  (author Magda Denes)

Having seen what I saw, I cannot for a moment abide the disingenuousness of those who argue that a fetus is not human, or those who convince themselves that abortion is not killing.  (Newsday reporter B.D. Colen, who witnessed a 2nd-trimester D&E abortion)

As I left the operating room, I shook my head in an attempt to get the horrible vision out of my head. I couldn’t. It was there; it would always be there: a little hand…a little rib cage.  (former medical student)

Read the entire article here.

In 1976, Dr. Richard Selzer was a surgeon at Yale University.  In January of that year, he authored an essay entitled “What I Saw at the Abortion,” which appeared in, of all places, Esquire Magazine.  In this piece, he described witnessing a prostaglandin-injection abortion performed at 24 weeks gestation.  Referring to the spirited fight put up by the preborn child in the defense of his own life, Selzer concluded:

Whatever else is said in abortion’s defense, the vision of that other defense will not vanish from my eyes. … And it has happened that you cannot reason with me now.  For what can language do against the truth of what I saw?

Indeed, what can lying words and sophistry do against undeniable truth?

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