Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Medical Malpractice?

Dear Indigna,

Today the Supreme Court ruled that "intact dilation and extraction" (aka "partial birth abortion") is "never medically necessary" (emphasis mine) and so a federal law making that medical procedure illegal, with no exception to preserve the health of the mother, is just okey-dokey.

If you could, would you remind me where all the members of Congress and the Supreme Court received their medical degrees? Also, can the lawmakers and Justices share the technology that allows them to accurately foresee the proper treatment of all women's future medical circumstances? 'Cuz, like, if I get cancer or something, I'd like them to tell me what the right course of treatment is so I can avoid anything unpleasant that is not "medically necessary."

American Woman
Medical Lake, WA

Dear Woman,

You have obviously been brainwashed by the medical-industrial complex into thinking that medicine is "difficult" or "situation specific." Ever heard of medical malpractice?? Huh? Huh? Obviously, doctors sometimes make mistakes, unlike the United States Congress and the U.S. Supreme Court!

So in their infinite wisdom, untainted by the doomsday mindset of the medical community, these lawmakers understand that a woman whose fetus suffers from hydrocephalus is far better off waiting full-term to deliver a non-viable child via C-section whose head is 250% larger than normal, even if it means major abdominal surgery, than she would be undergoing the outlawed procedure. And, rather than trying to provide the parents with an intact body to hold and bury, isn't it far more moral to dismember the fetus in utero, no matter what damage is done to the woman's body, so as to maximize the parents' guilt and horror when they are handed a blanket full of body parts to snuggle? And the family of a woman suffering life-threatening late-pregnancy complications? Where do they get off, when the Bush Administration has determined that she's better off dead as long as the child lives a few minutes or hours? Or suppose she is carrying a fetus with fatal chromosomal abnormalities? Who do her family think they are?! Who died and made them God, huh? (Whereas we all know that God Himself has appointed George W. Bush "the Decider.")

Now, for you so-called liberals out there, listen up--even Hollywood has endorsed this view! Why, just last week MTV broadcast the third-season premiere of "Run's House," a reality-"sitcom," in which the real-life main character's real-life wife gave real birth to a real baby with a real chromosomal defect that had been detected after the twentieth week of gestation. Because the real-life couple did not believe in termination, the real baby died in real-life on reality TV just a few hours after birth, providing a no-doubt gripping, "very special" TV moment when the baby's five real-life siblings, who had not been informed of the problem, were filmed being told of the death. Since a Hollywood couple made that choice, ought we not to mandate it for all couples facing the same situation? After all, they probably know at least as well as Congress and the Supremes what is best for all of us medically.

I look forward to the continuing tenure of this Supreme Court, when they take up such issues as whether or not people should be allowed to have a vasectomy, and whether or not a breast cancer patient should have a lumpectomy or a mastectomy, and if the latter, whether or not she should be allowed to have breast reconstruction. Perhaps, at some point, they will even address the question of which doctor each person in the U.S. can see, and, most importantly, whether or not we should imprison parents who give their children Gardasil, the cervical cancer vaccine, or for that matter, any preventative against sexually transmitted diseases (like, say, a non-abstinence-based sex ed class).

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