The film about abortionist Kermit Gosnell will begin its limited theatrical release today. I haven’t yet seen the film, so I can’t speak to its quality, but I can say that it tells an extremely important story.
As the movie’s tagline correctly notes, Gosnell is the worst serial killer in American history. The abortionist was officially charged in 2013 with the murders of seven infants and one woman, but the total body count is much higher than that. Gosnell used scissors to sever the spinal cords of hundreds of live babies. One employee of the Philadelphia clinic testified that she personally witnessed this procedure — “snipping,” Gosnell called it — at least 30 times. In some cases, she was given the child’s severed feet to put in a jar and keep as a trophy.
I could go on for several pages listing the horrific details. There’s a reason why the clinic was dubbed a “house of horrors.” There were “fetuses and blood all over the place,” as one medical student described it. You could hear the screams of children who were born alive and then decapitated. Carcasses and body parts were stored in shoe boxes, water jugs, jars, and break room refrigerators. And this is to say nothing of the unsanitary medical equipment which caused disease and infection in the patients. One woman had to go to a hospital and have part of her intestine removed after contracting an infection from Gosnell’s butcher shop. One woman died because of his gross malpractice.
Speaking of malpractice, the thing that defined the Gosnell story is that it was not a story. At least, the major news outfits did not treat it like a story. The liberal Kirsten Powers noted an outright “cover up” by a mainstream media that all but ignored the Gosnell saga from beginning to end. One Washington Post reporter infamously scoffed at Gosnell’s systematic slaughter of infants, calling it a mere “local crime story.” The film, which emphasizes the media black out of the case, has also received a black out by the media. As of this writing, Rotten Tomatoes has only aggregated 5 reviews of the movie. By comparison, Ryan Gosling’s moon landing movie, also released today, has over 200 reviews. Even “Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween” has 6 times more reviews than “Gosnell: The Trial Of America’s Biggest Serial Killer.”
Why did the media ignore, and why does it still ignore, the Gosnell case? Well, there are three reasons, all of which are pretty obvious:
1) Any case of illegal abortion will inevitably lead to difficult questions about legal abortion. After all, what is the substantive difference between killing a baby moments after it leaves the birth canal and killing it moments before? How can an advocate of unrestricted abortion become an opponent of infanticide? Any argument offered to justify late-term abortion must also apply to post-term abortion.
2) The Gosnell case explodes one of the most common pro-abortion talking points. Namely, that the prohibition of abortion will lead to horrific and unsanitary “back alley abortions.” Those kinds of abortions happened at Gosnell’s clinic even though abortion is legal. A person who takes note of that fact may begin to understand that abortion is a fundamentally dirty, unsafe, violent, gruesome thing. You cannot change that fact by making it legal.
3) It is impossible to report on this story without implicating the Democrat Party. Philadelphia is a city run by Democrats. Pennsylvania is a state run by Democrats. And it was in that Democrat-run city and Democrat-run state that a serial killer was able to operate his enterprise for 30 years without interference. All you needed to do was walk inside the building to see that something was terribly wrong. Yet, somehow, city and state officials didn’t notice for 30 years. Or they did notice and chose to look the other way. It seems the media cover up is covering up an even bigger one.
For these reasons, the media would not, and still will not, give the Gosnell case anything close to the coverage it deserves. So, as we rightly lambaste them for their horrible handling of recent news events, we should remember what they did with Gosnell. And we should go out and support the movie this weekend. It’s a story that needs to be told. And, as we have seen, very few people are willing to tell it.