In a win for pro-life advocates against late-term abortions, a Bethesda, Maryland abortion facility run by Leroy Carhart has been deemed illegal, and all abortions that were scheduled for October 17, 2017 have been cancelled.
Pro-life advocates have been fighting in Maryland against conditions they believe are cruel to unborn fetuses for quite some time leading up to this ruling. Carhart ran Germantown Reproductive Health Services, until the Maryland Coalition for Life purchased the building, effectively shutting down the business. It has been reported that Germantown Reproductive Health Services performed abortions on women who were up to nine months pregnant.
Unfortunately, this was not the end of the Coalition for Life’s battle against Carhart. He opened a new business in Bethesda, but protesters outside the building got Carhart to cancel abortions for the day. Carhart is not properly licensed to complete late term abortions in Bethesda, despite advertising these services for the new location.
Operation Rescue is using every resource possible to try to take down Carhart and his barbaric abortion practices. In a newly filed complaint against AbortionClinics.org, Inc., Carhart’s new business, Operation Rescue alleges that Carhart’s practices are illegal and he should be stopped.
Troy Newman is the President of Operation Rescue, and he believes that Carhart’s practices are so outrageous that he should be banned from practicing medicine completely in the state of Maryland. He alleges in the complaint that Carhart was sneaky and got caught, having little regard for the laws that protect unborn babies and pregnant mothers.
Pro-life advocates have plenty of reasons to be upset with Carhart. While he was performing late-term abortions, more than ten women were rushed to a nearby emergency room because of life-threatening complications due to shoddy procedures. A 29-year-old woman, Jennifer Morbelli, died after her visit to Carhart’s facility.
Three weeks after getting shut down in Germantown, Carhart was already back to providing late term abortions in Bethesda.
Dr. LeRoy Carhart began his Bethesda facility in 2010, where he would perform abortions on women throughout all nine months of their pregnancy. Prior to this, he was performing abortions in Omaha, Nebraska, until laws were passed that limited abortions to the first twenty weeks of pregnancy.
Dr. Carhart does not currently hold a lab certificate from the Office of Health Care Quality. His old clinic in Germantown is still listed, while the new facility is not recorded as a surgical abortion facility in Bethesda. Spokespeople for the facility state that Carhart is in compliance with the law, and abortions are expected to continue.
The law in Maryland regarding abortion considers that legal abortions are “Performed before fetus is viable, or at anytime where termination procedure is necessary to protect life, health of woman, or fetus is affected by serious genetic defect/abnormality”.
Unfortunately, this leaves plenty of gray area when it comes to what is deemed legal and what is deemed illegal when it comes to abortion. A viable fetus means a fetus that is likely to survive if they leave the womb. With medical advances in neonatal care, this can be as young as a baby born after only 21 weeks gestation. The line drawn between late term abortions and viability is a complicated one that can have major repercussions.
Late term abortions are also legal if the health of the woman carrying the baby is at risk if the pregnancy continues, or the baby is seriously genetically defective or abnormal. Again, this allows doctors to ride a fine line, making decisions that may not be acceptable to other doctors in the field.
Pro-life advocates have been very clear on the issue. Fetuses feel pain, and fetuses at 21 weeks gestation may be viable. Aborting a fetus at any time is against God’s will, but late term abortions are even more cruel. Removing a baby from a woman’s uterus at a late stage creates complications for the woman that could have been prevented from a normal term pregnancy.
Dr. Carhart is ready to begin performing late term abortions, but pro-life advocates of Operation Rescue is up to the challenge of continuing to fight Carhart and his poor abortion practices.
~ 1776 Christian