by Brandon McGinley

“There was this clear glass pan, and I saw it, and I thought, ‘What do you expect me to do?’ ” West testified Monday at Gosnell’s murder trial.

“It wasn’t fully developed,” West told the Common Pleas Court jury, referring to the 18- to 24-inch-long newborn in the pan. It didn’t have eyes or a mouth but it was like screeching, making this noise. It was weird. It sounded like a little alien.”

Questioned by Assistant District Attorney Joanne Pescatore, West, 53, said she did not know what happened to the “specimen” – the term she said she used because “it was easier to deal with mentally.”

“It really freaked me out, and I said call Dr. Gosnell, and I went back out front,” West added.

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It is a favorite conceit of the media that it provides a “voice for the voiceless.”

The only voices these hundreds of babies had were their plaintive, desperate cries.  They could not articulate words, but they could articulate terror and anguish.  And pain.  And dying.  They could articulate all the things we fear most about our humanity, and that we least desire to confront–suffering, anxiety, helplessness, mortality–in the few exasperating moments of their lives among us.

And then, suddenly, silence.

The silence persists.  These voiceless innocents have had no champion to make them heard.  No one has forced us, as a nation, to confront the gangrenous underbelly of our culture, where suffering and anxiety and helplessness and death thrive.  The voiceless remain in silence, and we remain in comfortable complacence.

In permitting this status quo, the news media violates its own commission.  We don’t ask anything extraordinary–just that the media fulfill the duties it has laid out for itself.

The willful failure to do so is nothing less than inhumane.


Cross-posted at The Family Forum