Yesterday’s release of a video showing the senior medical director of Planned Parenthood casually discussing the sale of organs from aborted babies is a moral challenge thrown right in the face of all Americans.
The video reveals Dr. Deborah Nucatola, senior director of medical services for Planned Parenthood, discussing the intentional harvesting of organs and other tissues from babies aborted in Planned Parenthood clinics. While reaching with her fork for salad, Dr. Nucatola openly tells a group she believes to be medical researchers that there is a great demand for fetal livers, but “a lot of people want intact hearts these days.”
Dr. Nucatola went on to explain in chilling detail that abortionists often plan in advance how to harvest desired organs, even telling the group that a “huddle” is sometimes held with clinic staff early in the day, so that targeted organs can be harvested from unborn babies.
Her language is beyond chilling as she described how abortions are conducted specifically to harvest intact organs: “We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I’m not gonna crush that part. I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above, and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.” She also described using an abortion technique that appears to be partial-birth abortion.
The undercover video was released by the Center for Medical Progress, a group with ties to previous efforts to expose Planned Parenthood and the reality of its murderous work. As expected, Planned Parenthood struck back, claiming that the video misrepresented Dr. Nucatola, Planned Parenthood, and the procurement of fetal organs.
In the video, Dr. Nucatola suggests that a cost of $30 to $100 would be a likely range of charges for organs and tissues harvested from aborted babies. She also tells the group that Planned Parenthood does not want to be seen as profiting from the sale of such organs, but she makes clear that this concern is not hampering the harvesting and transfer of the organs.
The sale of human tissues is illegal in the United States, as is the timing or arranging of an abortion if the cause of the abortion is the procurement of organs or tissue. Within hours of the release of the video, Republican presidential candidates and at least two governors were calling for investigations into the involvement of Planned Parenthood in the business of selling fetal organs.
Likewise, the defenders of Planned Parenthood attacked the video and the organization behind it. But Planned Parenthood is clearly concerned about the effect of the video, and it should be. The sight of the senior medical director of Planned Parenthood reaching for salad as she explicitly discusses tearing apart babies in the womb is impossible to reduce to words.
Planned Parenthood called the video “heavily edited, secretly recorded,” and said that it “portrays Planned Parenthood’s participation in tissue donation programs that support lifesaving scientific research.”
The Center for Medical Progress also released over two hours of what it said was unedited video of the conversation. As in the case of previous revelations of wrongdoing by Planned Parenthood, the group goes after the accuser more than the accusations.
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Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.