Katie Pavlich helped Fox News continue its attacks on New York’s abortion law by indulging in some slut shaming and claiming that late-term abortions, many of them medically necessary, are “recreational.”
There’s a whole lot of right wing resistance to the new New York law which serves to “protect women’s access to abortion” if the landmark abortion-rights case Roe v. Wade is overturned by Donald Trump’s Supreme Court.
So, just as they did with the Obamacare birth-control mandate, Fox & Friends is providing a platform for those who wish to make America great by taking American women back to the bad old days when abortion was a back-alley specialty!
Last week, Fox & Friends, with the assistance of “Superman” and “Gosnell” star Dean Cain, attacked the New York legislation. On Sunday, Fox & Friends host Katie Pavlich spoke with a virulently anti-choice gynecologist, Omar L. Hamada, who made the highly questionable claim that late-term abortions are never medically necessary.
Throughout the discussion, Pavlich echoed the misogyny of former Fox host, Bill O’Reilly, who mocked women as wanting late-term abortions “for any reason” such as a sprained hand.
Pavlich opened with the emotionally charged, “pro-life” propaganda about how New York’s new law will allow abortion up to birth. She introduced Hamada by showcasing one of his tweets saying, “There is not a single fetal or maternal condition that requires a third trimester abortion. Delivery yes, Abortion, no.” (Tell that to the family of Savita Halappanever who died as a result of having been denied a life-saving abortion and whose death led to legalized abortion in Ireland.)
Hamada elaborated on his claim that there is no situation that requires us to “kill the baby” – a framing that is clearly not universally accepted by the medical community.
Pavlich, obviously not wanting to cut the propaganda buzz, didn’t mention how, if an abortion is not performed on a pregnant woman with preeclampsia, she will die.
Instead, Pavlich totally mischaracterized the law: “So this New York abortion law, which allows abortion up to the day before birth essentially, then, is a recreational abortion bill.”
Hamada went through a litany of “pro-life” objections to the bill, one of which is the lie that abortion can be done up to birth “for any reason.”
Neither Pavlich not Hamada mentioned that the law permits “abortions after 24 weeks only in cases where a woman’s life or health would be threatened by continuing the pregnancy” or if the fetus would be unable to survive outside the womb. In other words, a physician assists the woman in making the best decision with regards to her health and life as well as that of her unborn child.
Hamada provided more validation: “I thought it was a travesty. … You know, there are some reasons that we will end a pregnancy, like an ectopic pregnancy in the first trimester or other reasons in the second trimester, but there’s absolutely no reason to end a pregnancy so that the child dies in the third trimester.” He said the “unconscionable” law “tore me up.”
Pavlich chimed in with an obviously leading question, whether this law goes against medical ethics that say, “Do no harm by not trying to save the lives of both the baby and the mother in the third trimester.” Not surprisingly, Hamada agreed.
Pavlich also made a point of giving Dr. Hamada the opportunity to say that he has been threatened by those who, according to Pavlich, disagree with the “science.” He cited nasty female doctors and nurses who are trying to ruin his career.
Pavlich asked whether these women knew about Hamada’s great experience in women’s health. Hamada whined about how this attempt to “shut me up” is “a common method that the left uses.” (Crooks & Liars has a series of tweets from a female doctor who responded to Hamada’s “mansplaining" claims.)
So there you have it. Pavlich says late term abortions, which can be an emotionally traumatic experience, are done for girls who just want to have fun. The spirit of Bill O’Reilly is alive and well on Fox & Friends!
Watch Fox continue to lie and misinform about the New York abortion bill below, from the January 27, 2019 Fox & Friends.
Let’s be straightforward. Both Pavlich and Hamada are openly, blatantly LYING. Hamada’s claims about abortion procedures, which really just echo other Far Right pundits, have been thoroughly debunked. It’s not just that his claims are questionable – it’s that he’s making FALSE statements and he’s doubling down even when called out on it. For example, the absolute tweet he threw up there he’s happily opining that there is not a single condition to justify a procedure in the third trimester – that one got a pile of responses, including multiple OB/GYN doctors noting that he was both wrong and lying about this. I also call foul on his claim that anyone wanted to make death threats to him – he’s most likely referring to the dismissals he was receiving for having made such a ridiculous statement under the cloak of his medical license. Pavlich, for her part, never even noted that Hamada’s statements are knowingly false – she just made a disingenuous remark about having invited Governor Cuomo onto her show, something that she knew would never happen.
I say again that it is extremely offensive that Right Wingers are deliberately trying to smear this New York law, which is intended to protect lives in the event of late term medical distress, and in the face of the now-inevitable overturning of Roe v Wade within the next few years. (There’s actually a case pending RIGHT NOW – June Medical Services v Gee – that will effectively gut Roe as of next week if the current SC refuses to stay an extreme Louisiana anti-choice law within the next three days.)
And I say again that the offensive arguments these people are raising are not just about overturning the idea of state-by-state access to pregnancy procedures. Their arguments are about redefining human life to the exact second that the egg is fertilized. This is something that we have never done – it is only extreme Right Wing fanatics who have tried that approach. Modern science follows the precept that during the initial months of a pregnancy, this is more of a chemical/biological process. If the Right Wing gets their way, the current Supreme Court would make that redefinition and assign personhood to a fertilized egg. The second that happens, all pregnancy management procedures would be considered criminal and this situation goes from terrible to nightmarish. (And that’s before they get to banning all forms of contraception, which will be next)
It’s bad enough that the current Supreme Court is going to make it nearly impossible for women in at least half of the country to have any choice in their reproductive situations. But the current Right Wing is not satisfied unless they get the full Monty on this – meaning a nationwide ban on any procedure. If they succeed at their intentions here, we’ll see a scenario where women who are not wealthy will essentially be told they must either bear children they cannot afford or raise (and even in the face of risks to their lives), or where those women will go back to underground procedures that will absolutely risk their lives. Meanwhile, the wealthy Right Wing women will go right along having procedures outside of the US.
Pavlich should be ashamed of herself for peddling this nonsense.