It’s bad enough that the press doesn’t care about “Doctor” Kermit Gosnell executing newborns and infecting women in a filthy clinic, but the silence from the White House is far more deafening. Yesterday, Fox News reporter Ed Henry dared to ask Press Secretary Jay Carney:
One other topic: there’s a murder trial in Pennsylvania, that I know you know is getting a lot of attention, more attention, the media was not getting a lot of attention, Kermit Gosnell, this doctor who is accused of having, delivering some babies who were literally screaming and then beheading them. He’s facing murder charges on that, it hasn’t been decided yet obviously, since he’s still on trial. Is the president following this at all, does the White House have any reaction to that kind of situation that is alleged?
I’ll say two things: one, the president is aware of this; two, the president does not and cannot take a position on an ongoing trial, so I won’t as well. Certainly, the things that you hear and read about this case are unsettling, but I can’t comment further on an ongoing legal proceeding.
Let’s peruse Memory Lane for a few “legal proceedings,” most of them “ongoing,” the president wasn’t so reluctant to volunteer his thoughts on:
- December 2012: On the same day as Adam Lanza’s shooting spree at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, Obama signaled that the crime held immediate political ramifications: “We’re going to have to come together and take meaningful action to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.” Since then, the president has taken to campaigning for new gun-control measures before audiences of victims’ families.
- July 2012: Obama first responded to James Holmes’ killing spree at an Aurora, Colorado movie theater with heartfelt, non-partisan remarks, but he soon incorporated the massacre into his push for his gun-control agenda.
- March 2012: Obama avoided making specific claims about the facts surrounding Florida man George Zimmerman’s fatal shooting of teenager Trayvon Martin, but he did call the event “a tragedy,” noting that “if I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.” He also opined that “all of us have to do some soul searching to figure out how does something like this happen,” suggesting that rather than a purely criminal matter, perhaps there was some deficiency in “the laws and the context for what happened” that needed to be addressed.
- December 2010: Obama called Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie to congratulate them for giving football star and convicted dog killer Michael Vick “a fair second chance,” because “it’s never a level playing field for prisoners when they get out of jail.” While condemning Vick’s crimes, White House spokesman Bill Burton publicly reiterated the president’s belief that “individuals who have paid for their crimes should have an opportunity to contribute to society again.”
- July 2009: After black Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates was arrested for disorderly conduct after being misidentified as attempting to break into his own home and calling arresting officer Sgt. Joseph Crowley a “racist cop,” Obama said that despite “not having been there and not seeing all the facts,” it was “fair to say” that “Cambridge police acted stupidly,” and he suggested Gates may have been a victim of racism. If the president had waited for the facts, he would have known that Crowley had been joined by a Hispanic officer and a black sergeant, and that Crowley had an exemplary record on race. Further, Obama did more than “take a position”; he invited Crowley and Gates to a “beer summit” predicated on the insulting theory that the minor incident held some deeper race lesson the country needed to learn.
- May 2009: Obama wasted no time expressing his “shock and outrage” at the murder of partial-birth abortionist George Tiller on the day it happened, lecturing America that “however profound our differences as Americans over difficult issues such as abortion, they cannot be resolved by heinous acts of violence.” (By contrast, it took the commander-in-chief two days to acknowledge the shooting of two soldiers at a recruitment center in Little Rock, Arkansas.)
The president’s reactions vary in accuracy and appropriateness, but they all prove that he won’t hesitate to opine on local matters and open crimes when he feels like it. When a case serves his views, there’s no end to the “teachable moments” or causes for “meaningful action.”
The Gosnell trial makes the White House squirm because Obama is the infanticide president. When a more sanitary version of Gosnell’s crimes was being committed in Illinois hospitals, Obama refused to do anything about it – partly because a hypothetical threat to Roe v. Wade bothered him more than newborns starving to death, and partly because, as Henry noted, that the very suggestion that any doctor would be capable of such a thing was an intolerable insult against their honor.
Honor. Sure would be nice to see some in the White House. When we can’t even trust a leader to put the welfare of newborns above politics, no decency line is safe.