Planned Parenthood and euphemism: how they describe abortion

Call it what it is.

Planned Parenthood is the biggest abortion provider in the United States. In 2010, they made a minimum of $98,833,500 off abortion (1). Their website presents information for women about abortion and related subjects. On Planned Parenthood’s site here, they describe abortion procedures to women who are considering terminating their pregnancies.

An aspiration (or suction) abortion is performed in the first trimester. Planned Parenthood gives the following description of this procedure:

• A speculum will be inserted into your vagina.
• Your health care provider may inject a numbing medication into or near your cervix.
• The opening of your cervix may be stretched with dilators — a series of increasingly thick rods. Or you may have absorbent dilators inserted a day or a few hours before the procedure. They will absorb fluid and get bigger. This slowly stretches open your cervix. Medication may also be used with or without the dilators to help open your cervix….
• A tube is inserted through the cervix into the uterus.
• Either a hand-held suction device or a suction machine gently empties your uterus.
• Sometimes, an instrument called a curette is used to remove any remaining tissue that lines the uterus. It may also be used to check that the uterus is empty. When a curette is used, people often call the abortion a D&C — dilation and curettage.

The uterus “gently” emptied of tissue. What a simple, safe, easy procedure.


Planned Parenthood gives no information about the unborn baby whom the abortion will destroy. The unborn baby’s heart begins to beat only three weeks after fertilization. He or she has brain waves and the beginning of arms and legs at 42 days. By four weeks, the embryo is moving. If the child is a girl, her ovaries begin to develop at seven weeks. The baby has also been observed hiccuping at this time. The uterus is identifiable by nine weeks if the baby is female. At eight weeks, the child has hands, feet, fingers, and toes. When this baby is subjected to the violent power of an abortion suction machine, he or she is torn limb from limb – literally ripped apart.

Let’s take a look at the reality of the aspiration procedure as described by a person who witnessed it. A medical student who worked at Planned Parenthood gave the following description on her blog:

Really it’s just inserting a vacuum device into the woman’s cervix and sucking out all the contents of the uterus. First the cervix is numbed up with some lidocaine and another drug that constricts blood vessels so that there’s less bleeding. Then her cervix is dilated (how much depends on how far along she is) with these metal rod-dy things. Then a plastic tube attached to the vacuum device is placed in her uterus, the vacuum is turned on, and then the tube is moved back and forth while rotating it to suck it all out. Then an ultrasound is done through the vagina to make sure the gestational sac is gone. Then we looked at what was sucked out after they wash out the blood and strain it. The first patient I saw was at 11 weeks and some days. I completely wasn’t expecting it, but there were fetal parts. Like hands. And legs. And kidneys. It was pretty shocking. But, of course, after the initial shock, I was fine. I was actually fascinated by it. Until I saw one with a face. Complete with eyeballs…It’s amazing to think that all of this can form within only a couple of weeks[.]

Planned Parenthood withholds the fact that these “gentle” procedures “empty the womb” by tearing apart a developing baby. The baby is the invisible victim, with his or her death process hidden by euphemistic language. The reality of what abortion does is evident to all those present except the woman herself, who is shielded from seeing the remains of her aborted baby. Recently, a clinic worker described how it was her job to make sure that the jar containing the baby’s parts was carefully hidden by a drape, presumably in case a recognizable piece of the baby was visible in the bloody remains.

D&E abortions are done in the second trimester. Planned Parenthood describes a D&E (dilation and evacuation) the following way:

• Your health care provider will examine you and check your uterus.
• You will get medication for pain. You may be offered sedation or IV medication to make you more comfortable.
• A speculum will be inserted into your vagina.
• Your cervix will be prepared for the procedure. You may be given medication or have absorbent dilators inserted a day or a few hours before the procedure. They will absorb fluid and grow bigger. This slowly stretches open your cervix.
• You will be given antibiotics to prevent infection.
• In later second-trimester procedures, you may also need a shot through your abdomen to make sure there is fetal demise before the procedure begins.
• Your health care provider will inject a numbing medication into or near your cervix.
• Medical instruments and a suction machine gently empty your uterus.

An unborn baby has taste buds at 12 weeks. In one experiment, amniotic fluid was sweetened, and the unborn babies were observed drinking more of it than usual. Also, by three months, the baby responds to touch.

Former abortionist Dr. Anthony Levantino describes a D&E abortion. He performed his abortions for years as part of his practice before his pro-life conversion:

A second trimester D&E abortion is a blind procedure. The baby can be in any orientation or position inside the uterus. Picture yourself reaching in with the Sopher clamp and grasping anything you can. At twenty weeks gestation, the uterus is thin and soft so be careful not to perforate or puncture the walls. Once you have grasped something inside, squeeze on the clamp to set the jaws and pull hard – really hard. You feel something let go and out pops a fully formed leg about 4 to 5 inches long. Reach in again and grasp whatever you can. Set the jaw and pull really hard once again and out pops an arm about the same length. Reach in again and again with that clamp and tear out the spine, intestines, heart and lungs.

The toughest part of a D&E abortion is extracting the baby’s head. The head of a baby that age is about the size of a plum and is now free floating inside the uterine cavity. You can be pretty sure you have hold of it if the Sopher clamp is spread about as far as your fingers will allow. You will know you have it right when you crush down on the clamp and see a pure white gelatinous material issue from the cervix. That was the baby’s brains. You can then extract the skull pieces. If you have a really bad day like I often did, a little face may come out and stare back at you.

Congratulations! You have just successfully performed a Suction D&E abortion. You just affirmed her right to choose. You just made $600 cash in fifteen minutes.

Every day, countless men and women look at Planned Parenthood’s website and get Planned Parenthood’s version of what an abortion entails. These visitors get only a small part of the actual story, yet they come away feeling that they know everything important that there is to know about abortion. Pro-lifers must seek to educate the public about the true horrific nature of abortion.

For those of us fighting against abortion, the truth is on our side. Planned Parenthood is the one that is lying by omission. Pro-lifers are the ones who are telling the truth. We must work to make more people aware of the facts about abortion.

Note: fetal development facts were taken from the Endowment for Human Development.

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