Back to the Future

A luxury of living in our modern enlightened times, is that we can all proudly boast that we would never have condoned—much less participated in—the cruelties and barbarisms of our ancestors.

Just fill in the blank yourself: “I would never ______________!”

enslave my fellow man

consider a person of color inferior

allow children to work

accuse someone of witchcraft

close my eyes to genocide

burn someone at the stake

watch two men fight to the death

feed people to lions

stone an adulteress

crucify my Lord

Well, not so fast. The pro-life bloggers and Tweeters that got the media and the nation to finally pay attention to the trial of late-term abortionist “Doctor” Kermit Gosnell have re-exposed a legal barbarity that is very much still with us.

Lest one think that Kermit’s house of horrors was just a one-off in an otherwise beneficent women’s reproductive health industry, at least 15 states have launched investigations over the last three years into abortion providers for inferior and/or improper “care.” Reports Denise Burke, vice president of legal affairs at Americans United for Life, “In seeking to advance their own financial and political interests, Virginia abortion advocates blatantly ignored evidence of substandard conditions in Virginia abortion clinics, refusing to even acknowledge, and failing to contradict, evidence presented to the commonwealth’s board of health.”

And let’s not forget the details of the various legal late-term procedures themselves. Here they are in brief, but please do click on the links for more details:

Dilation and Evacuation (D&E)—inserting forceps into the mother’s womb the abortionist grasps and dismembers the baby by twisting and tearing the parts of the body. Because the baby’s skull has often hardened it sometimes must be compressed or crushed to facilitate removal.

Saline Injection—the abortionist inserts a long needle through the mother’s abdomen and injects a saline solution into the sac of amniotic fluid surrounding the baby. The baby is poisoned by swallowing the salt and his skin is completely burned away. It takes about an hour to kill the baby. After the child dies, the mother goes into labor and expels the dead baby.

Prostaglandin Induction—prostaglandins prematurely injected into the amniotic sac induces violent labor and the birth of a child usually too young to survive. Typically, the violent contractions crush the baby to death, but if not, and it is delivered alive, it will usually die within a few hours from exposure. Often salt or another toxin is first injected to ensure that the baby will be delivered dead.

Intracardiac Injection—abortionist injects medication into the fetal heart to stop it beating.

Caesarean Section—the abortionist cuts the umbilical cord while the baby is still in the womb, thus cutting off his oxygen supply and causing him to suffocate.

As disturbing as these legal methods are, Planned Parenthood and other abortion enthusiasts continue to bemoan the proscription of intact dilation and extraction (aka partial-birth abortions) and would gladly bring back the gruesome practice, which is described by one abortion M.D. thusly:

The surgeon introduces a large grasping forcep through the vaginal and cervical canals into the corpus of the uterus…he moves the tip of the instrument carefully towards the fetal lower extremities. When the instrument appears on the sonogram screen, the surgeon is able to open and close its jaws to firmly and reliably grasp a lower extremity…and pulls the extremity into the vagina…the surgeon uses his fingers to deliver the opposite lower extremity, then the torso, the shoulders and the upper extremities. The skull lodges at the internal cervical os. Usually there is not enough dilation for it to pass through…At this point, the right-handed surgeon slides the fingers of the left hand along the back of the fetus and “hooks” the shoulders of the fetus with the index and ring fingers. Next he slides the tip of the middle finger along the spine towards the skull while applying traction to the shoulders and lower extremities…While maintaining this tension, lifting the cervix and applying traction to the shoulders with the fingers of the left hand, the surgeon takes a pair of blunt curved Metzenbaum scissors in the right hand. He carefully advances the tip, curved down, along the spine and under his middle finger until he feels it contact the base of the skull under the tip of his middle finger…the surgeon then forces the scissors into the base of the skull…spreads the scissors to enlarge the opening…and introduces a suction catheter into this hole and evacuates the skull contents. With the catheter still in place, he applies traction to the fetus, removing it completely from the patient.1

Now, if that doesn’t make you cringe and get you to recalculate the actual altitude of your moral high ground…

Of course, the pro-aborts are always ready to help us realize that the pro-life movement uses deception to make the gullible public unreasonably squeamish. As an example, Amanda Marcotte writing for RH Reality Check a website focusing on “reproductive health and justice issues” warns

Anti-choicers’ best weapon is exploiting the disgustingness of surgery, any surgery. (If you described root canals like they do early term abortions, and put up doctored photographs of the results, you could get half of Americans to freak out and agree to be “pro-tooth”). But late term abortion is by far the grossest, most distressing of abortion procedures. They really do remove fetuses that are very close to the baby stage…

You see, it’s just gross and distressing because it’s surgery, not because it’s killing a baby. But a baby is what he or she is. The more honest abortionistas are admitting as much these days. Not convinced? Go visit a couple “preemie” websites or read this post from the Associated Press: Tiniest preemies growing up healthy despite odds. Or follow the work of Dr. Edward Bell, a University of Iowa pediatrics professor who runs an online registry of the world’s tiniest babies and reports that “survival of infants born weighing less than 400 g [14 oz.] is rare but increasing.”

And if you’d like an additional look inside the minds (and facilities) of today’s late-term abortion providers, be sure to watch the new Live Action undercover videos in Washington, DC and the Bronx.

We can continue to deny the personhood of our progeny in utero—even when they are “very close to the baby stage”—and employ euphemisms to disguise their humanity, but science and God urge us to do otherwise. So, what will our enlightened descendants say about us in the future?

1. Martin Haskell, M.D., Dilation and Extraction for Late Second Trimester Abortion, Presented at the National Abortion Federation Risk Management Seminar, September 13, 1992

Patriots’ Day 2013

Wrapped in American flags and shouting “USA!” the residents of greater Boston celebrated the capture of marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. According to the National Journal, “The young and old gathered in public spaces…singing the national anthem, feeling a sense of common accomplishment, relishing in a public exhale.  After a day of lockdown, the source of their collective fear was lifted.” And from the The Atlantic, “A city that’s been under siege for five days is now breathing a huge sigh ofPaul_revere_ride relief.”

Listen my children and you shall hear
Of a city locked down in abject fear,
On the nineteenth of April, in o’ thirteen;
Hardly a man could now be seen
Sheltered in place, oh who could have foreseen…

One if by land, and two if by sea;
And I in my jammies at home will be…*

Hardly the stuff of Boston legend. Is this really all we can expect from the descendants of the Sons of Liberty? From the Boston Tea Party to Lexington and Concord to Bunker Hill to…the Great Lockdown? Paul Revere and Sam Adams are, no doubt, spinning in their final resting places.

The_death_of_general_warren_at_the_battle_of_bunker_hill

There are several troubling aspects to what transpired after the Boston Marathon bombing. First, how is it that a city whose name is synonymous with courage, defiance and revolutionary spirit so readily acquiesced to a government order to go home and not open the door for anyone other than “properly identified” law enforcement? During “the siege”—which, by the way, was inflicted on Bostonians by their own government—President Obama spoke at an interfaith prayer service in remembrance of the victims of the bombing:

Our faith in each other, our love for each other, our love for country, our common creed…That’s our strength.  That’s why a bomb can’t beat us.  That’s why we don’t hunker down.  That’s why we don’t cower in fear.

Despite the moments of sustained applause and cheers the president’s comments received, they are complete nonsense. Bostonians did hunker down—in fact, they were ordered to hunker down and they quickly complied. And as for cowering, you tell me what Bostonians were doing before their “collective fear was lifted” and they breathed their “huge sigh of relief.”

But enough of my armchair caterwauling. Let’s take a look at what someone on the scene and clearly more qualified than I has to say. Reporting from Boston for the Jerusalem Post, Yaakov Katz writes:

For most of the day, my family and I stayed inside our home behind locked doors…When I eventually ventured outside, the eerie silence on Boston and Cambridge’s empty streets was something strange…I had the opportunity to think back to the aftermath of terrorist attacks I had covered in Israel before leaving for a sabbatical at Harvard University. I might be wrong, but my feeling is that in the aftermath of those attacks the opposite always happened. There was no lockdown in Israel and there was no order by the mayor to seek shelter. Instead, people were out in the streets, filling up coffee shops right next to the one that had been bombed or standing at bus stops waiting for the next bus from the same line that had just exploded. This has always impressed me as a sign of true resilience, of a refusal to allow terrorism to change our way of life.

I am not judging the people of Boston and their leaders and yes, there is something to be said about being safe rather than sorry. But, I wonder about the long-term strategic ramifications and if this won’t be viewed as a near-surrender to terrorism.

Not to mention surrender to big government. To the nanny state. To the police state.

By the way, the bombing crisis also gave Boston’s top bureaucrats the opportunity todonuts & coffee establish that some of its citizens are less equal than others. According to The Boston Globe “At the direction of authorities, select Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants in the Boston area are open to take care of the needs of law enforcement and first responders.” The legions must be fed even if we need risk the lives of a few bakers.

Now, on to my second gripe: how exactly is the “accomplishment” common as reported above by the National Journal? Because Bostonians paid the taxes that funded the police?  Because the good citizens of Beantown dutifully stayed off their own streets? Littering the internet are photos and videos of the moments after Tsarnaev’s capture. They reveal a jubilant populace cheering their uniformed liberators. If the Iraqis had been this grateful there’d be a Disneyworld in Baghdad today. But what did the citizens contribute other than getting the hell out of the way? And what would the punishment have been if any Bostonian had dared venture into the streets of his own neighborhood?

Which leads me to my third and final concern…

In the wake of the great gun debate of 2013, nobody seems interested in pointing out the obvious—that people in Boston were killed by bombs not guns. And many more severely injured because the killers used bombs and not guns. Now, these bombs were apparently not very sophisticated and did not incorporate any illegal components. In fact, a Department Homeland Security Information Bulletin warned in 2004 that “pressure cooker bombs are made with readily-available materials and can be as simple or as complex as the Pressure_Cooker_Free_Zonebuilder decides. These types of devices can be initiated using simple electronic components including, but not limited to, digital watches, garage door openers, cell phones or pagers.” Which, of course, begs the question: will we now hear a demand for the ban of pressure cookers, digital watches, garage door openers, cell phones, pagers and whatever else “not limited to” includes? Apparently, the manufacturer of the pressure-cookers allegedly used in the bombs thinks we might, so they have released a statement that their products “are not intended to be used for any purpose other than cooking.”

Massachusetts largely disarmed its citizens in 1998 with what was hailed at the time as the strictest gun control legislation in the nation. As a result, reports the Associated Press, “The number of active firearms licenses in Massachusetts has plummeted…There were nearly 1.5 million active gun licenses in Massachusetts in 1998. June [2002], that number was down to just 200,000.”

But far from making people safer, The Boston Globe reports that “Murders committed with firearms have increased significantly, aggravated assaults and robberies involving guns have risen, and gunshot injuries are up, according to FBI and state data.”

So, criminals still have guns, terrorists use homemade bombs and the heirs to the Minutemen have been disarmed. But the police will keep the citizens of Boston safe by clearing the streets and rolling the armor.

From Don’t Tread on Me to Shelter in Place. Pathetic.

*With sincerest apologies to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

That Wacky WAC

Kicking off National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, acting Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Jessica L. Wright said that she wacposterstarjoined the Women’s Army Corps in 1975 back when having a drink at the post club was the norm. “But in our military now…we don’t condone drinking…We don’t have those social things like we used to, because it’s just not who we are.”

I went into a public ‘ouse to get a pint o’ beer,
The publican ‘e up an’ sez, “We serve no red-coats here.”
The girls be’ind the bar they laughed an’ giggled fit to die,
I outs into the street again an’ to myself sez I:
O it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy, go away,”
But it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins,” when the band begins to play
The band begins to play, my boys, the band begins to play,
O it’s “Thank you, Mister Atkins,” when the band begins to play.*

So, lemme get this straight, Jessie—er, I mean your Honorableness. We condone the deployment of young Americans to countries that pose no threat to the U.S. in order to kill “enemy combatants” in said countries. And we condone young Americans getting killed and maimed in said countries because their slaughter somehow ensures our freedom. And, while we’re at it, we condone massive “collateral damage”—that is, the killing of civilians (last conservative count is around 150,000 in the wars in Iraq and Carrie_Nation_1910Afghanistan), not to mention the maiming, orphaning, etc. But, we absolutely do not condone drinking among our warriors? Or “social things” like Enlisted, NCO and Officer Clubs? Who is this DoD Carrie Nation and for whom does she claim “we?” Certainly not the troops she once supervised. Is this what diversity and affirmative action have wrought? A military so politically correct that young men can’t be encouraged to unwind with a beer in their own clubs because hops turn boys into rapists?

We aren’t no thin red ‘eroes, nor we aren’t no blackguards too,
But single men in barricks, most remarkable like you;
An’ if sometimes our conduck isn’t all your fancy paints,
Why, single men in barricks don’t grow into plaster saints;
While it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ Tommy, fall be’ind,
But it’s “Please to walk in front, sir,” when there’s trouble in the wind
There’s trouble in the wind, my boys, there’s trouble in the wind,
O it’s “Please to walk in front, sir,” when there’s trouble in the wind.

Many moons ago when yours truly was making his way through the nearly year-long crucible that is Marine Corps training for infantry officers, the O’ Club was a welcome refuge within hobbling distance of the barracks after a tough week in the field—and, yes, within stumbling distance on the way home. While at the club, my fellow lieutenants and I not only relaxed, but bonded over the successes, failures and comedies of the week past. If we were lucky, a senior officer would join and regale us with personal combat stories, which would always prove to be as valuable as any lessons learned in the classroom. Later in my brief career the O’Club and its enlisted and NCO counterparts would provide even more critical relief in the various crap-holes around the world to which my Marines and I were deployed. Sometimes the clubs were nothing more than GP tents in the middle of the desert or the jungle.

Post clubs, however, are not the only vessel in which soldiers, testosterone and alcohol are mixed into a fine warrior grog. The Marine Corps, for instance, has a proud tradition of Mess Nights, Dinings-In and Marine Corps Birthday Balls. Speaking of the USMC birthday, let’s not forget that the Corps itself was founded in a watering hole. On November 10, 1775, the Continental Congress commissioned Capt. Samuel Nicholas to1775-Tun-Tavern raise two Battalions of Marines. So, what did the good skipper do? He set up his recruiting office in Tun Tavern, a brew house in Philadelphia. Where else?!!

Regardless of the venue, soldiers have been blowing off steam, reveling, carousing, contemplating, congratulating and commiserating over booze for millennia. Rather than a deviancy to be quashed, this type of social behavior is integral to military cohesion and is still very much a part of “who we are.” But, Ms. Wright says no drinking for young warriors enjoying some down time before they’re asked again to kill or be killed. Instead, we provide them new “social things” like sexual assault prevention and response training, LGBT sensitivity awareness, Gay Pride celebrations and various other programs provided by today’s don’t ask, do tell military. All of which are no doubt critical to the WAC-in-chief’s mission, which her bio claims is “overseeing the overall state of military readiness.” Ready for what? The next drag queen sock hop?

So, I guess in today’s military we expect that the intense camaraderie necessary for combat can be forged among young warriors over coffee in a fluorescent–lit conference room at 9PM on a Friday night following a lecture on sexual harassment after a grueling week of physical challenges, mental endurance and sleep-deprivation? But to me that sounds like it would pretty much drive a young man to exactly the type of behavior Ms. Wright is trying to prevent.

Meanwhile, in the real world, two more women Marines have flunked infantry officer training. But I’m sure the undersecretary is working on a plan to address the USMC’s archaic, patriarchal, intolerant physical standards for combat training.

*Tommy, Rudyard Kipling, c. 1890