Some pro-lifers are prone to regard all abortionists as monsters, bereft of a moral sense or sympathy for dead fetuses. That is nonsense.
The truth is that many limit their practice to relatively early abortions precisely because they find late term abortions troubling. Some limit their practice to the destruction of fetuses at 12 weeks’ gestation, others 15 weeks, still others 17. They do so because they share a moral sense with their pro-life opponents. It is a sense, rooted in a common human nature, which compels all of us to sympathize with beings that look like newborns.
Well, nearly all of us. There are abortionists, like Gosnell, who venture where few of their colleagues dare. They are untroubled by screaming fetuses born alive, or severing the spines of 30-week old fetuses, or dropping them into blazing furnaces. They don’t flinch. They don’t shed a tear. They just do their jobs.
At his trial, Gosnell listened to the horrors that took place in his office with bemused calm. As one journalist reported, “he just watched and calmly took notes with a vague hint of a smile on his face from time to time.” Like other sociopathic killers, Gosnell was terrifyingly composed and undisturbed.