Alaska Governor Sarah Palin gave birth to her fifth child, Trig Paxson Van Palin, on April 18. According to the 2-1 ruling earlier this week on Virginia's partial-birth abortion law by a three judge panel of the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Governor Palin had every right to take the life of Trig in the final days of her pregnancy. You see, Trig has Down Syndrome. Considering that many of the late-term abortions that two members of the Fourth Circuit ruled to protect are performed when the child is diagnosed with health complications, Trig is lucky to be alive.
According to Governor Palin, "Trig is beautiful and already adored by us. We knew through early testing he would face special challenges, and we feel privileged that God would entrust us with this gift and allow us unspeakable joy as he entered our lives."
Prenatal testing alerted the Palin's to Trig's condition during the second trimester. At that point, the "procedure" done to "terminate the pregnancy" is called a "Standard Dilation and Evacuation (D&E). According to testimony given the Fourth Circuit's three judge panel, a "Standard D&E" abortion:
Is by far the most common method of pre-viability second trimester abortion, used approximately ninety-five percent of the time. In this procedure the doctor dilates the woman's cervix and uses suction and forceps to remove the fetus. The doctor also uses instruments to hold the vagina open and to gain access to the cervix and uterus. As the doctor uses forceps to pull the fetus out of the cervix during a D&E, friction usually causes parts of the fetus to break off or disarticulate. As a result of disarticulation the fetus is removed in pieces. Throughout the process, the fetus may show signs of life, such as a heartbeat, although disarticulation ultimately causes fetal demise.
However, if Trig's mom and dad had a difficult time deciding what to do, and waited until the final days of pregnancy (right up until the day of birth), and then decided to "terminate," the "procedure" used would have been an "intact D&E":
A doctor intending to perform an intact D&E uses certain methods, such as serially dilating the cervix or rotating the fetus as it is pulled out of the uterus, to increase the likelihood of intact delivery. In an intact D&E, as generally described, the fetal skull is typically too large to pass through the cervix, and the doctor compresses or collapses the skull to complete the abortion.
This is the procedure that just two judges yesterday decided is "Constitutional."
We do not share these descriptions with you in an attempt to inflame passions. We do so to share them with you simply because many of you may not be aware of what is done to an unborn child in a second or third trimester abortion — many of which take place well after the moment of "viability." We also share them so that you understand that despite this graphic testimony, two judges still voted to allow the second procedure to go on!
We issued a statement the day of the Fourth Circuit's decision that said:
The fact that pro-abortion forces continue to defend the heinous act of partial-birth infanticide with such vigor reveals their extremism. It must be noted that the procedures being discussed, a "dilation and evacuation" abortion and an "intact D&E" both require the dismemberment of an unborn child past the known date of viability.
The vicious hate e-mails we have received as a result of interviews we've done with newspapers and television stations reveal an extremism that shocks even us, who are no strangers to vile and threatening letters from extremists. Pro-abortion forces, such as Planned Parenthood, are vicious in their advocacy for this brutal procedure. But this is yet another opportunity for us to educate our friends, co-workers and neighbors on the reality of abortion. By continuing to defend this procedure, pro-abortion forces give us more opportunity to expose them for who they are.
As you talk to people around you, I urge you to share the story of Trig, a Down Syndrome baby who is a blessing to his family in ways that many cannot comprehend. It is this type of child that is daily being destroyed by "partial-birth abortion."
For more details on Virginia's ban on partial-birth abortion, which became law in 2003 when the General Assembly over rode then-Governor Mark Warner's amendments, read the following news stories in the: