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FIRST-PERSON: Abortion, crashing into the truth (again)

JACKSON, Miss. (BP)–Among the many fatuous arguments promulgated by the pro-death, pro-abortion political lobby is that the vast majority of “fetuses” (babies to you and me) killed in abortions each year could not have survived outside their mother’s wombs anyway, so what’s the big deal?

Like the inane trimester system of gestational development crafted by the U.S. Supreme Court — a concept that can only be described as a laughingstock at most medical schools — and the “fetuses aren’t developed enough to feel pain during an abortion” contention that has been disproved by modern ultrasound, the abortionists’ latest lie has crashed headlong into the truth.

Rumaisa Rahman was born by emergency caesarean section at 26 weeks gestation on Sept. 19 at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, Ill., when her 23-year-old mother was stricken with severe preeclampsia (extreme high blood pressure during pregnancy). Rumaisa, barely six months from her conception, was less than ten inches long at birth and weighed 8.6 ounces — about the weight of an average soft drink in a can or a cell phone. She is thought to be the world’s smallest surviving baby. The previous record was also held by Loyola University Medical Center: 9.9 ounces at 27 weeks gestation.

Her fraternal twin sister, Hiba, was born at the same time and weighed one pound, four ounces. Hiba, although incredibly small herself, was well within the capabilities of premature care in today’s medical world.

“We are very excited about this case because all the studies seem to suggest that she will develop normally,” said Jonathan Muraskas, professor of pediatrics and neonatal and neonatal-perinatal medicine at the Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine, said in a December news release. “Ultrasounds have shown that Rumaisa’s head is normal and there is no bleeding in her brain, which is a common complication that can put a baby at risk for cerebral palsy.”

Both Rumaisa and Hiba have already undergone laser surgery to ward off future vision problems, another common complication.

“We anticipate an excellent visual prognosis,” Muraskas said.

Rumaisa was discharged from Loyola University Medical Center on Feb. 8, weighing a hefty five pounds, eight ounces. Loyola University Medical Center is among the leaders in caring for extremely premature infants.

According to the National Institutes of Health, more than 1,700 newborns weighing less than two pounds have been admitted to the hospital in the past 20 years, with a survival rate of 90 percent for those born at 27 weeks gestation or longer. The medical center is by no means alone in accomplishing these medical miracles. We constantly are pushing back the time period during which a baby can survive premature birth.

The future holds great promise in this area of medical research. It is a sad fact, however, that in America, little Rumaisa (and her sister) could have been exterminated for any reason — or no reason at all — in the forceps of an abortionist who is legally entitled to practice his perverse craft throughout the full nine months of gestation.

After all, no baby had ever survived at Rumaisa’s birthweight and she wouldn’t have felt any pain during the abortion procedure. Right? It’s not really a baby; it’s a “blob of unformed tissue.” Right? It’s just a “product of conception” until it draws its first breath. Right? It would just be another mouth to feed in “an overpopulated world.” Right? We can hold down the societal burdens created by raising children. Right? We can even control birth defects. Right? The constitutional right of privacy extends to abortion. Right?

We’ve heard all of these excuses for legal abortion many times before. When you next encounter abortion extremists offering the same tired arguments listed above or even more simple-minded misrepresentations, ask them if they’ve ever heard of Rumaisa Rahman, and then give thanks for the incredible gift of life that she enjoys. All the bloviations of the powerful pro-abortion lobby won’t be able to stand up to her 8.6 ounces of pure truth.
Perkins is editor of the Baptist Record, Mississippi Baptists’ newsjournal, online at http://www.mbcb.org/resource_services/br/

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  • William Perkins