What jurors need to know in the Gosnell trial


PHILADELPHIA—If you aspire to be a juror in abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s murder trial, here are some subtleties of logic you must be sharp enough to appreciate:

  • If you kill a baby in the womb, it’s abortion, and you get well paid. If you kill a baby outside the womb, it’s murder, and you could face the death penalty.
  • If a baby is born prematurely you call him a “baby.” If he is the same age but still in the womb, you call him a “fetus.” (Geography matters.)
  • If you kill a baby at 23-weeks-and-six-days gestation, it is legal. And if you do it enough times, you get to be called as an expert witness for the prosecution against a defendant who killed babies at 24-plus weeks.
  • The above 23-weeks-and-six-days rule is just for Pennsylvania. If you cross the border into another state where the law is different, you will not be a monster anymore. (You may even someday be called as a star witness in another trial.)
  • The same baby that is abortion jailbait at age 25 weeks is a woman’s civil right a few days earlier.
  • If a woman’s tummy is injected with digoxin in order to give her baby a fatal heart attack, and the baby accidentally lives outside the mother for a few moments, although he is already doomed by the digoxin, you will be charged with murder if you finish the job with a knife. But if you kill the baby passively by setting him on a table, this is not murder. (And remember, you may be called as a star witness for the prosecution in another trial.)
  • A 23-week-old unborn baby is presumed to feel no pain but the 24.5-week-old unborn child is presumed to feel pain.
  • Jurors shown photos of babies born alive at 23 weeks and surviving on life support should not draw personal conclusions about the age of viability.
  • If an aborted baby is accidentally born alive, slitting the back of his neck is first-degree murder, but giving him “comfort care … until it passes” gets you an invitation to be a star witness for the prosecution against Kermit Gosnell. (“Comfort care” consists in placing the baby under a cloth. The baby will eventually “pass,” but at least he will not catch a cold in the meantime.)
  • Storing aborted baby parts in a labeled specimen jar is monstrous. Dissecting aborted babies in your anatomy class (as my nurse friend Susan did three decades ago at Vanderbilt University) is not.
  • Jurors must be sophisticated enough to constantly think along two different tracks—legality and morality. And where these two seem to be out of synch, the sophisticated juror must forget what his humanity tells him.

Note: The defense was set to begin its case yesterday, but court proceedings were postponed because of defense attorney Jack McMahon's illness.

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Andrée Seu Peterson
Andrée Seu Peterson

Andrée is the author of three books: Won't Let You Go Unless You Bless Me, Normal Kingdom Business, and We Shall Have Spring Again.


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