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Expendable Children

If you already read this, please read the updates below I thought I'd seen everything. I thought I was jaded and nothing I would read would surprise me anymore. Guess not. Via Michelle Malkin and Allah, I just read this story in the New York Times about a woman, Amy Richards, who got pregnant, found out she was having triplets and nonchalantly decided to abort two of them because: bq. I'm going to have to move to Staten Island. I'll never leave my house because I'll have to care for these children. I'll have to start shopping only at Costco and buying big jars of mayonnaise. Even in my moments of thinking about having three, I don't think that deep down I was ever considering it. This is a professional, secure woman with a long term boyfriend who willingly went off the pill. bq. My immediate response was, I cannot have triplets. I was not married; I lived in a five-story walk-up in the East Village; I worked freelance; and I would have to go on bed rest in March. I lecture at colleges, and my biggest months are March and April. I would have to give up my main income for the rest of the year. There was a part of me that was sure I could work around that. But it was a matter of, Do I want to? I was not married. That didn't seem to phase her when she went off the pill knowing full well that she could get pregnant. There was a part of me that was sure I could work around that. But it was a matter of, Do I want to? What a self absorbed woman she is. She has three babies living inside her. She was able to hear all three heartbeats. When we saw the specialist, we found out that I was carrying identical twins and a stand alone. My doctors thought the stand alone was three days older. There was something psychologically comforting about that, since I wanted to have just one. Psychologically comforting or perhaps a little bit of justification? Well, the "stand alone" came first so it's only fair that we let him live and kill off his siblings. Oh, my gosh, there are three heartbeats. I can't believe we're about to make two disappear. And they were going to make those heartbeats disappear because this woman didn't want to become the archetypical suburban mom, shopping at Costco and living out of the city. On the subway, Peter asked, ''Shouldn't we consider having triplets?'' And I had this adverse reaction: ''This is why they say it's the woman's choice, because you think I could just carry triplets. That's easy for you to say, but I'd have to give up my life.'' So, hey. Why not just give up the life of two of them? You've got three, some are expendable, right? I'm pro-choice and this is completely revolting to me. When you become a mother, you give up your life whether you have one, three or five children at a time. Motherhood is a selfless thing. Your life belongs to your child. Or children. Is one child better than three because you'll have to buy less mayonnaise? My sister cannot have children of her own. She went through hell to get the child she has now, my beautiful nephew. Reading stories like the one above leave me seething. How many women out there are struggling to conceive and this woman just throws two babies away because she doesn't want to change her lifestyle? My friend Debbie has triplets. Two beautiful girls and a gorgeous boy. Debbie works, goes out with friends and does not buy mayonnaise in bulk. But her life does belong to those kids and she wouldn't have it any other way. Because she had to undergo years of fertility treatments and experience several miscarriages before she gave birth to her children. And here's someone who just willingly gave up two babies because she's a selfish prig. Could she not have made the choice to give the twins up for adoption? Or perhaps she didn't want the inconvenience of doctor's ordered bed rest getting in the way of her lifestyle. Perfectly good reason to abort, right? I would do the same thing if I had triplets again, but if I had twins, I would probably have twins. Then again, I don't know. Please, Miss Richards, do me a favor. Don't breed again. Don't take the chance that there will be two more babies you'll discard because you don't have the time nor the inclination to care for them. Please don't slap every infertile couple in the face by flaunting the fact that you think those heartbeats were expendable. Why Amy Richards decided to tell her story to the New York Times is beyond me. Why the New York Times saw fit to print this awful tale of selfishness, I don't know. Richards should be ashamed of the choice she made. She knowingly took the chance of getting pregnant and then bailed out when it looked like she bit off more than she can chew. I wonder if some day she'll tell her son that he had two siblings but she killed them because she was afraid of becoming a soccer mom? This story left me literally crying. The heartlessness of Amy Richards, and the obvious fact that she doesn't see anything wrong with her decision and the NYT telling this story to the world is really a sad, sad comment on today's society. Listen, I know people do things like this all the time. And I know that sometimes people have to choose options like this for medical reasons. But the fact that Richards decided to tell the world her story as if she's making some kind of statement is just appalling. I pity Amy Richards. I hope at some point in her life she looks back on what she did and the way in which she did it and she feels some sense of remorse. But I doubt that will happen. [Check Michelle's trackbacks for more blogger reaction to this story] Update: There's some speculation that this may be a hoax or satire, based on some people speculating that the Amy Richards in the article is this Amy Richards (based on the articles Ms. Richards "I lecture at colleges" statement - it seems that's what the former editor of Ms. Amy Richards does also. She also lives in New York City). If so, the New York Times has sunk to a new low. They either willingly played along or were taken for a ride by not fact checking. Honestly, I hope it is a hoax. That would be the lesser evil of the two. Update Two: This is not a satire: Allah did some digging around and discovered that the Amy Richards in question is, indeed, uber feminist Amy Richards. He notes this paragraph by Amy's feminista sidekick Jennifer Baumgarten in the Nation: bq. If abortion were connected to actual women--people like my friend Amy Richards, who had an abortion at 18 and a selective reduction last year when she found she was pregnant with triplets, or Nancy Flynn, who was a single mom finishing her BA at Cornell when she had an abortion and who told me she would "never have been able to have the rich life I've had and help my son as much as I have if I'd been the single mother of two children"--perhaps the mounting restrictions wouldn't pass so handily. So there you have it. This Amy Richards is that Amy Richards and hers is a true story. Sad, but true. And maybe she likes to call it selective reduction because it makes it sound oh so clinical and detached. I call it selective abortion. Let's call a spade a spade, Amy. No wonder Amy didn't want to live the soccer mom lifestyle. It would have killed her feminist credentials.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Expendable Children:

» Untitled from Inoperable Terran
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» One Is Enough from O'DonnellWeb
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» "TERRIFYING" from Michelle Malkin
Rod Dreher over at The Corner points to this creepy New York Times piece (registration required, it's worth it) by a cosmopolitan woman who recounts her decision to undergo "selective pregnancy reduction." Let me translate that for normal people who... [Read More]

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» Lives: When One Is Enough from Outside The Beltway
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» Indeed from PoliBlog
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Pitiful! What a sad story.

It's stories like this that make me hope there's a God. And a Hell.

One of my best friends was a twin. But her brother came out stillborn. It was the sort of freak, sad thing that nobody could have stopped. My friend is nearly 30 years old now, but to this day the thought of her dead brother will reduce her to tears unlike nothing else.

She wonders why she lived while he died. She wonders if somehow it was her fault, although logically, as an intelligent person, she knows how unlikely this is. She mourns for him on her - their - birthday every year. She misses him terribly even though they never met, she regrets the bond they could never share.

I imagine that Amy Richards' child will feel the same way in 30 years. And it seems horrible.

Except that Baby Richards will have two siblings to miss instead of just one.

Amy Richards and her boyfriend could have opted to keep the new baby in the dark about this hole that they have put in his or her life. But now that the Richards story has been published in the NY Times, that's not really an option, is it?

So now not only will Baby Richards have two siblings to miss, he or she will also have to come to terms with Mom. Who did away with the siblings for nationally-documented reasons of CONVENIENCE.

No, that's not going to screw the kid up at all.

Man, I'm 100% behind abortion rights, generally speaking. I'd never endorse a law against them. But this situation is not even sane.

we have come so far from being a society that loves and respects life.

and truthfully, it is stories like these that make the Catholic Church's position on the sexual revolution make sense, even if you don't agree with it. you see that their "Slippery slope" argument has been fulfilled by the lowest common denominator of people.

a lot of women feel like this now. a lot of women would rather have a lifestyle than a child--not just a theoretical child, but an actual living, heartbeating child. where does this discounting of life end? will they kill off their elderly parents too, because they don't want to have to move to a first-floor-ranch-style home, and their folks can't walk up stairs? at what point, that kind of comment sounded so over the top. but it doesn't anymore. it makes me want to weep.

"Unlike nothing else"

Heh. That makes no sense. Is that why you have the little preview button?

How about "like nothing else."

Go me!

She has no frame of reference right now. Once she has that one child and realizes that her life as she knows it has radically changed, she might need to go through a lot of therapy.

Hey, it took me 11 months to get pregnant with our son. We've already been trying for 15 months for #2, to no avail. A friend tried greater than 3 years to have her son. When both of us, and others I have spoken with, were pregnant with our first, we had NO ClUE of the actual experience we were going to have. We could theorize about it all we wanted. Some of that theory was good, some was bad. But it was still theory.

When she has this child, it will no longer be theory and she will be in her own personal hell for what she did. At least, that's what many people hope, I would imagine.

Some things sure put an end to Keep Away From Politics Sunday.

I'm pro-choice and offended, as I said on Allah's site. I know some people who had abortions, and none was as cavalier and shameless as this idiot. All of them found the entire process to be harrowing and difficult, as it should be. It's not just a medical procedure, it's a life. Denying that is stupid. (I'm on the "Abortion is awful, but forcing a woman to give birth is just as bad if not worse" side of the issue, for those smelling an inconsistency there).

Some wonder why she didn't put the children up for adoption, but I've seen difficult pregnancies that nearly destroyed the health of mothers (who wanted their children with every ounce of strength). I can't imagine them going through what they did for something to give away. That's selfishness, but also realistic on some level.

Just like poor people talking about their credit card debt (a NYTimes story from a few weeks back), this woman can't say anything that doesn't make her look like an idiot. I wonder what compelled her to keep talking. As for why the Times printed it, well it sure got people talking.

I posted this story over at Redstate. I first read it on Malkin's blog. I cannot tell you the rage and disgust I feel for this woman. She is so self-absorbed ... I I I ... me me me ... my my my. Look how she describes her "terrifying" future
I'll never leave my house because I'll have to care for THESE children

This is not a case of getting three blenders at your wedding shower and having to return two. This is watching three healthy heartbeats on a monitor and saying "get rid of two of them. Yes, even if it involves sticking a needle into those hearts."

Unf**kingbelievable. Somebody tie her tubes. And I feel so sorry for her "son". My ferverent wish is she loose custody of him.

In Palestine there are people who teach their children to aspire and strive to someday become a human bomb.
Why is it that we seem to think that mental sickness like that is only limited to "over there"?
Plain and simple, sick people are all over the earth.
Myself, I'd like to think that this IS a hoax, but I would not be a bit suprised if it's not.

One of the benefits of going to a diversity of blogs is that a decent blogger like Michelle can summarise things as well or better than you.

SO my statement is this:
Please, Miss Richards, do me a favor. Don't breed again. Don't take the chance that there will be two more babies you'll discard because you don't have the time nor the inclination to care for them. Please don't slap every infertile couple in the face by flaunting the fact that you think those heartbeats were expendable.

Reading the last 2 paragraphs from this link


lead me to believe that this is (sadly) not a hoax.

Sorry don't know if I can hot link in the comments.


If abortion were connected to actual women--people like my friend Amy Richards, who had an abortion at 18 and a selective reduction last year when she found she was pregnant with triplets, or Nancy Flynn, who was a single mom finishing her BA at Cornell when she had an abortion and who told me she would "never have been able to have the rich life I've had and help my son as much as I have if I'd been the single mother of two children"--perhaps the mounting restrictions wouldn't pass so handily.

These ....creatures are proud of their :::ahem::: selective pregnancy reductions.

I'm not convinced it IS a hoax. Amy Richards - the feminist.org/com Amy Richards - is extremely upfront about having had an abortion in the past. Her portions of Manifesta, the book she cowrote with Jennifer Baumgardner, are not only pro-choice but proudly so. It's sickening to know that she's as callous as she is, and having read the NYT article, I'm convinced that if it IS the same woman, there's a very good chance that it's all true.

I honestly can't believe how sick and selfish this woman (in the article) is. But I have no trouble believing that this sort of selfishness - for these sorts of reasons (not wanting to "live on Staten Island and shop at Costco" - oh, the horror!) - exists. It's awful, and that's not even adequate. But there's no doubt that there are people who are just this nuts. I simply hoped that I would never hear about one.

Sickening. Absolutely sickening. I've been pro-choice most of my adult life, but it's things like this that push me further and further towards the other side.

Sweet Jeebus....

I consider myself pro-choice, though with some ambivalence and uncertainty, which increases when I see something like this. I think I'm actually most amazed by the New York Times printing this, and basically in a slot reserved for "charming slice of life" feature story fluff. As if it never even crossed their minds that any right-thinking person might find it downright appalling.

Perhaps someone should submit an 'Ask Amy' if it's right to abort two of three kids and be smug about it afterwards?

If you are "pro choice," which let's be honest is merely "pro abortion" as all of the other options are fine with pro-life people EXCEPT abortion, what does this matter to you? She made her choice and you have a problem with it because shes... an über-feminist? How would this story about a woman like that be any shock to anyone, pro-life or pro-abortion?

BTW "pro-choice' is yet another clever twist of words by the left to make it seem like us Conservatives are against women having ANY say in their pregnancies.

Do you chastise the waiter when he/she brings your meal exactly as you expected it to be?

Reminds me of that FedEx commerical where the guy is calling to complain that the package arrived exactly when they said it would, interrupting whatever odd thing it was he was doing when the doorbell rang.

And please don't throw that "this is my blog, I pay for it" whine in retort, you posted it and have public comments. If you don't want people to make comments that point out your odd twists and turns in your not-quite-conservative-because-that-would-align-you-with-the-pro-lifers logic, then turn off comments.


Was that supposed to make sense? Or are you really Keanu Reeves (which would explain the incoherency).

I made the mistake of reading this to my wife who has endured HUNDREDS of shots during our fertility treatments, mostly injected by me (Most of you don't know what it's like putting another needle in the woman you love when she can't take any more; the pain, huge bruises, the infrequent shot into a blood vessel, causing blood to shoot all over the bathroom)... We discussed the risk of multiple births and thought if God blessed us with that possibility, we'd figure out how to handle it (For you atheists, replace God with fate or providence). I am crying for the twins that weren't given a chance because of their mother's "lifestyle", and I don't mean "crying" figuratively.

The glibness of the story, the tossing it off as if she were telling about having a couple of teeth pulled is what's most disturbing. Abortions happen. Selective reductions happen. I hate that, but the small shred of optimist in me wants to believe that the women who are having them are just a little bit conflicted, a little bit regretful that their circumstance left them feeling that there was no other option, if not over anything else.

Amy Richards has no conflict. She has no regret. At her direction and in order to preserve her hipster feminista downtown lifestyle she had adoctor shoot poison into the hearts of two of her children and kill them, and it's meaningless to her. And she wants to prove it to the whole world. Are we to believe that there is no agenda behind this article?

Amy Richards may be female

but she's no woman

I'm with Neo. I don't get you, "I'm pro-choice but this is horrible" people.

I can understand people who don't think abortion is killing a person. I disagree, but I understand where you're coming from. Those who say, I think abortion is killing a person, but think it should be legal boggle my mind. How does a decent person think such a thing?

Those of you who think abortion is killing a person, but it's still okay, but this story is horrible... I simply can't fathom the moral universe you live in.

Look, I'm a woman, and I'm not "pro-choice" in the traditional sense of the term (that is to say, I'm not anti-abortion, but I have more complicated views about it than are summarized by the pro-choice label), but I'm sickened as hell by this woman.

I feel sorry for the child she didn't "selectively terminate" -- not as much about his/her "missing" siblings -- as having to grow up with such a self-centered, self-absorbed, ideologically blinded bitch of a mother. She's the poster child for needing a license to breed.

Wow. I don't think I've ever heard of a more selfish, self-centered person in my life.

My problem isn't her decision to have one child instead of three. In fact, it's completely understandable. If a woman decides that she is incabable of raising three children as well as one, that's her decision. It's probably best for the child as well, rather than raising three neglectfully.

What really disgust me is the stated rationale for her decision. She obviously has no concern for anyone but herself. She couldn't bear exchanging her hip bohemian lifestyle with one involving shopping for tubs of mayo among the suburban plebes of Staten Island. Those "extra" children were seen as nothing but a cultural hindrance, so she aborted them.

Honestly, I don't think she's even ready for one child. Her swanky village loft will be full of plastic Fischer-Price toys and spit-up stains with only one child, let alone three. I genuinely fear that she may smother her surviving child when the 4am feedings and changing responsibilities destroy her social calendar. She obviously sees children as an inconvenience. If that's how you feel, don't have any children.

Like others, my pro choice stance is complicated. I personally would never choose to have an abortion and I think abortion is a horrible thing. However, I think there are circumstances where abortion is something that could be considered an appopriate reaction, but I'm not going to get into that whole thing here. At least not now.

My wife and I have our 'miracles', twins as a result of infertility treatments after 9 years of trying.

When we had the first ultrasound, there were 3 fetuses - one of them simply stopped developing at about 10 weeks. If it survived to term, the clinic would have strongly urged us to consider a 'reduction' of one.

We never came close to such a choice. But even today, thinking about it scares me to death - how the f**k do you make a choice like that - pull numbers out of a hat?

Ms. Richards rather nonchalantly says - OK, we'll get rid of two of 'em, since 3 will cramp my style.

This is slap in the face of all infertility sufferers, and those couples who would sell their souls to have a child. Amy should sit in on a few infertility support groups - hear their stories, then talk about her 'problem'. It wouldn't get far, I'm sure. Besides, the majority of the people in that room would beg to be able to adopt any babies that conflicted with her social and activist lifestyle.

My brother-in-law just adopted his 3rd child, after years of heartache and expense trying to get through infertility problems. There won't be a lot of sympathy from him, I can tell you.

I feel sorry for the child that Amy has condescended to spare, because her mother will be pretty occupied with her own self for most of the time, if this is any indication.



Well, in a couple of years, the effort of actually raising the remainding child will be too much for this creature, and she'll probably want to medically commit retro-active reduction of tissues. Yep, that's how this will pan out. It's hers, and she'll do as she like.

I feel like throwing up, after reading this. To think that someone would feel that this was in any way, shape, or form justified just makes me nauseous. I believe that this kind of action will eventually lead to her regret. I feel ashamed, and pity this poor woman.

I'm going to post this anonymously, to preserve my wife's and my childrens' anonymity too. I just want to be up-front about this.

Our first son was born almost 8 years ago. The pregnancy was completely without problems, and he is extremely healthy and vital. It turns out that he is pretty much a biological miracle.

We tried to get pregnant again when he was 2 1/2. My wife finally conceived a few months later, and we thought we were set. At 8 weeks, we went in for the first sonogram. Nothing. No heart-beat. She had to get a D&C. We tried again for months after, but nothing would take. Finally, her ObGyn recommended a fertility clinic.

They quickly determined that my wife had (at least) three different issues with her body, including hormonal levels, that pretty much totally prevented her from getting/staying pregnant. That our first son was born at all turns out to be a literal miracle. He should have never made it past 8-10 weeks. But he did. Thank God.

So, we spent the next 3+ years trying, desparately, madly, painfully, to get pregnant. My wife went through literal hell. The hormone trips alone almost destroyed our marriage. The havoc that it reeked on her emotionally and physically was intense. My wife still doesn't understand why I stayed with her!

Because of her age (and, therefore, the age of her eggs), the doctors finally determined that we would have to go with an egg donor. So, we went through all of the profiling, selected multiple candidates, and finally got the eggs. We had enough for 3 tries. The first one didn't take. The second one didn't take. Finally, on the last try, the doctors placed the last 4 zygotes in her womb, and we said a prayer.

3 of them took. After all of this time, 3 of them took. You cannot imagine how freaked out we were. I did not, honestly, know how we were going to manage. Our finances were not in the best of shape, I was supposed to go back to school, etc etc. It was a hard few weeks.

When we went in for the first sonogram, we found out one of the babies had died. Two heartbeats were going strong, but the third was non-existent. The doctors informed us that this was quite common.

We were devastated. As trying as it would have been, we had already committed ourselves to 3 brand new lives in our world. To lose one, even after so short a time, was heart-breaking. We cried, we grieved, we had friends who loved us through it, while we licked our psychic wounds. Then we moved on.

The twins are a little over a year old, now. They are two of the most precious, miraculous, delightful beings I have ever had the pleasure of bringing into my life. My wife holds them completely as her own, even though they share no genetic material with her. She carried them to term, dammit! They are hers!

All of this rambling does have a point. I'm absolutely appalled at the shallowness and self-centeredness exhibited in this story. This woman has absolutely no clue. The pain and anguish that so many people have gone through, that we went through, to have a child. And she so callously 'reduces' hers. All because she didn't want to go to Costco. Because she would have to 'give up her life'. Words are insufficient.

Most likely, she will go through the remainder of her life, smugly satisfied that she made the right 'choice'. Yes, she has the choice, so preciously protected by our Constitution. And I support her right to make that choice. But she also has responsibilities. And her willingness to shirk those responsibilities is maddening, saddening.

I'm sitting here, with my head in my hands, trying to reconcile what we went through with what she decided to do. It simply doesn't fit. It's like we came from two entirely different worlds. I try not to be arrogant or self-rightous about it. But I can't help but feel that she's fundamentally a lesser person for what she did.

My wife and I tried to have kids for years. Fertility drugs, interesting visits to the doctor, vaginal ultrasounds (I'll leave that to your imagination), shots, etc, etc, etc and this bitch decides that it will be too difficult to carry on a life with three kids. Families are begging for kids, and this bitch decides that being on bed rest at week 20 is just too much since that will cut into her clubbing lifestyle. F*cking C*nt.

The only thing that I hope comes out of this is that Ms. Richards child, when he grows up, becomes psychotically pro-life. Because dammit Amy, it's all about choices, right?

BTW, I'm the proud dad of five kids (four adopted and one from a previous relationship). Yeah, it screws with my life, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

Amy is tdoay's poster child for the culture of death.

Like Michele, I've got a complicated pro-choice position, but... It's the particular cases like this that make any kind of idealistic pro-choice position shatter into nothingness.

Hey folks,

Amy didn't kill two fetuses and then tell her story to the New York Times. She did it and then SOLD her story to the New York Times.

But one day, when she realizes just how precious her surviving child is to her; and realizes that she casually killed his brother & sister.......... I wouldn't want to be her. A living hell will be hers - guaranteed. She will be haunted by this on her dying bed.

No one should take joy in that.

I'm pro-life. Or anti-abortion, whatever you want to call it. I'm as appalled as the rest of you by this story, but I'm having a bit of trouble figuring out the reactions of those of you who call yourselves pro-choice.

What I'm getting here is that if a woman shows some necessary amount of angst and emotional turmoil over having to abort her unborn child, then it's okay for her to have an abortion. But if she doesn't show any remorse -- if she's cavalier about it -- then somehow it's bad.

That's what it sounds like some of you are saying. I mean, after all, the woman who is all angsty about aborting her child is still, in the end, aborting her child for the same reasons that the cavalier woman is...she feels that a baby (regardless of whether it's one, two, or a dozen) is going to mess up her plans for her life.

So why are some of you condemning this woman so much? What am I missing?

Maybe,Mark,but I have found that people like her are capable of even more unbelievable mental twists of denial to not have to experience any pangs of guilt,and I would suspect that her"support network"will prevent her from having any healthy grieving proccesses when the time comes.

My view isn't that complicated.

I would like to see the practiced of abortion minimized as much as possible, but I am dead set against abortion being made illegal.

If a woman has an abortion, and is remorseful, at least she has plenty of food for thought. If a woman has an abortion, and is cavalier about it, that seems nasty, but it's still the way she's dealing with it. Maybe it was the right choice for these women, and maybe it wasn't.

Making a law against an abortion is another matter. That sets a precedent of letting authorities take control of people's bodies. Why the people who support legal control over a woman's body called "pro"-life is something I'll never understand.

I don't think those of us who call ourselves "reluctant pro-choicers" are really that complicated. I don't want all abortion outlawed. I believe that, tragically and in full recognition of reality, that first trimester abortions should be legally left to the decision of adult women. That said, I support parental notification laws, restriction on 2nd and 3rd trimester abortions and banning of partial-birth abortion. I don't think doctors should be required to learn about them in medical school or be forced to perform them. I think there should be a much stronger emphasis on encouraging adoption. Parenthood is not determined by blood but by love.

Two stories. #3 daughter Heather (now 21). When she was 15 her best friend got pregnant. She could have easily opted for an abortion (her parents wanted her to have one). But, God bless Lisa every day, she realized she couldn't do that to her baby regardless of schoolmates whispering behind their hands about her or the pressure she got from other schoolchums on why she should get an abortion. Heather hung in with her, going with her to dr. appts and giving her encouragement. Lisa had a beautiful baby girl on New Years Day and a family was born because Lisa had decided to adopt her baby out to a loving couple who were estatic over getting such a gift. Lisa still gets letters and pictures from her little girl's parents.

Two years ago #2 daughter, Erin, was in the midst of a very difficult pregnancy with identical twin boys (natural occurrence, what a shock to everyone). She went into early labor at 30 weeks. She spent the next 3 weeks in the hospital, in bed, on a magnisium drip (which was hell for her, you're not allowed to eat, leave the bed, and it makes you feel like you've been dipped in fire). Then she had a C-section because one twin was much smaller than the other. Nikolas (2 lbs 14 oz) and Sean (4 lbs 4 oz) then spent 4 weeks in NICU. They will be 2 y/o 9/27 and I cannot imagine life without these bundles of energy. They are perfectly fine and typcial litte boys and no one can look at them now and conceive they had been premies. I remember being in the NICU and stroking Nick's back in the incubator, his tiny little foot just a tad bigger than my thumb. And he was neither the smallest nor earliest premie in there.

How can anyone deny these little babies their chance at life? How can anyone actually celebrate the decision to make that denial? I understand abortion where the fetus is terminally ill or grievously malformed. I can understand when the pregnancy truly threatens the physical health of the woman or may mean her life. I while I won't legally deny a woman her "choice" in the first trimester even if she's having it as a "lifestyle" choice; I do expect her, out of common decency, to acknowlege the tragedy the abortion represents and to be mournful and aggrieved about it. A fetus is not an impacted tooth. What warped moral compas do the Amy Richards of this country possess that makes them think so?


The conundrum comes about because we are not dicussing only the woman's body.

I am one of those who is "pro-choice" but horrified. But as other's have said, my views on abortion are not black and white. Basically I am "pro-choice" not because I think abortion is a good thing, and certainly not because I feel abortion should be engaged in cavelierly; but because I think that 1)the woman's health predominates. 2) there are better ways of riddding ourselves of abortion than by making it illegal. Science and social reform strike me as the ways to make abortion a dinosaur treatment.

This woman's selfishness is appalling; there was no inication that she hereself was in danger from this pregnancy, nor that there was little liklihood of bringing the children to birth. These chidren had no meaning to her; they had no potential except as a problem.

Sad, her life really. Very sad.

This is truely scary that there are people out there like this.

Curt, it's rather simple. It's not a question of angsty or not, it's a question of why a person conceived and why she's aborting. In the typical situation, a woman conceives accidentally and is ill equiped, for whatever reason, to have a child and decides to abort (I'm not saying I don't have issues with this, but it's the typical case that most pro-choice people don't take issue with). In this case the woman purposefully conceived and then out of sheer selfishness terminated two of the three fetuses because they would interfere with her idea of being a mother. It doesn't take a genius to see the differences.


Sure, there are differences, but when dealing with an innocent human life why should such intent really matter? Selfishness comes in many shades. Maybe this woman could've handled the triplets, whereas a poor woman couldn't. Why should we blame one over the other when their reasons are essentially the same?

I had a friend of mine confide in me that she had an abortion while she was in college. The abortion wrecked her life for years. But even then, her remorse wasn't final until she finally admitted her own fault in the matter. Pro-choice, while a politically loaded term, isn't inaccurate: it's a choice between life and death. And for her child, she chose death. Yes, she said she killed it. And she needed forgiveness, which she finally got from her religion. But it didn't change the fact that she was at fault. And yes, she was a college student and couldn't have supported a child. She was immature and in no way prepared to be a parent.

But her child is dead. Forever.

The natural revulsion that pro-choicers feel about this story is all your instincts and civilized upbringing screaming to you that abortion IS murder. Give it up. "Complication" about abortion is just crazy. According to the pro-choice view, it was her choice, her body, her moral right to make that choice. You have NO right to condemn her. Remorse isn't required. They don't WANT guilt over what's done, despite it being a natural reaction.

We don't even know when these abortions were done. First trimester? Second? Third? Was it a partial-birth abortion? Who knows? Who cares.

Give it up, guys. The grass is much greener on the pro-life side. Come on.

The same 'it's my body' people that advocate things like partial-birth abortion, are often militant against the genetic engineering of plants (at least the German breed).

They march for partial-peace (they are only against war, if the United States are involved) and still have the nerve to call brave sacrificially soldiers 'baby-killers'.

It's a strange world we live in.

Some day Amy's child will find the Internet. Some day after that they will read about their mother's "choice".

I would like to be around for the converstation that follows.

Sydney, you assume I subscribe to what you term a "pro-choice view." Bad assumption.

Secondly, even assuming that abortion is taking a life, there are, in our society, legally and moreally justifiable reasons for doing so, and vice versa. The same rational, as applied to abortion, if accepting your view, applies.

It'd be nice if the world was as black and white as you imply, but life just isn't that way.

I'm pro-choice, and the shallowness of some people on my side of this issue revolts me.

This is the sort of story that does enormous damage to pro-choice arguments, and to me illustrates why, even though I'm pro-choice, I believe Roe v. Wade needs to be overturned and the states need to be able to go back to working out for themselves what is and is not acceptable in terms of abortion.

We can work out democratically compromises that most people can live with. And before the so-called "feminists" bark, the truth is that women are generally pro-life than men, so giving men a voice in the matter is only likely to give us more liberal laws on the practice and not less.

This really is a good illustration of why abortion isn't a simple issue for people of conscience.

"Complicated"? I believe the word is "nuanced."
Nuanced, as is I was in favor of legal abortion before I read the icky NY Times article amd wanted to posture against it.
Nuanced, as in I was happy to pretend that the millions upon millions of abortions performed since 1973 were at the behest of women abandoned by men, with no financial resources, and anguished beyond words, until one of them wasn't beyond words and published her story.

To some, this Amy Richards for example, children are a trophy to have, hold, and display. Throwing a couple of 'extras' away just isn't a big deal, no different than returning the extra blender mentioned above.

I suspect that Ms. Richards will not be buying mayonaisse of any type - she has people who do that for her. Likewise, her child will have an excellent relationship with a series of au pairs until old enough to attend boarding school. Just speculating.

Why people who think this way have children is lost on me.

Selective reduction?

Is rape now "an unwanted invasion of space"....my god Orwell indeed.

"Making a law against an abortion is another matter. That sets a precedent of letting authorities take control of people's bodies. Why the people who support legal control over a woman's body called "pro"-life is something I'll never understand."

No, see, the problem with the pro-choice argument is that we are not talking about controlling a WOMAN'S body, but the body of her child. Certainly the woman's body will be affected, but only temporarily--as I have said many times, pregnancy is temporary, abortion is forever.

Those of you who like to use the label "pro-choice" to describe your position on abortion seem genuinely thoughtful and concerned with justice. But what we are dealing with, in this issue in particular, is blood, and life, and death. It is NOT a matter of "privacy," as it involves: A mother, a father, an abortion provider, an abortion counselor, and, most importantly, an individual unique and separate from his or her mother. The child's genetic makeup is set from the get-go. It's not a potential life--it IS a life. By the time most women even know they're pregnant, the organs have been formed and the child is moving around. Most abortions are performed AFTER this point, and we're talking six weeks into gestation here. Of course, the unborn baby is dehumanized, its stage of life actually used against it to excuse its gruesome killing.

Some say they're "personally" opposed to abortion, but don't want to impose their beliefs onto the "bodies" of another. That's bull. We do that all the time. There are anti-smoking laws, laws against not wearing seat-belts, laws against lewd conduct. I am pro-life, but I am not conservative. I don't know when the pro-choice community will figure that one out. Lots and lots of pro-lifers are, in fact, quite liberal in every single way, except where abortion is concerned.

We have no right to tell a person when and where and how to have sex, and with whom, and why. But NOBODY has a right to exterminate another human being because that person's existence inconveniences you and puts a wrench in your material plans. The question is not about choice. Why are we holding an abstraction, wholly without form or palpability, something totally arbitrary, like "CHOICE" over human blood? Since when should human life be expendable at the whims of the child's mother? Even pro-choicers who admit to the humanity of the unborn say that the simple fact of the mother's adulthood gives her ultimate control over the life of her child. But her child was conceived with its own identity, and when it is unwanted, is thrown into the garbage and hardly thought of again.

I cannot think of any other Constitutional "right" that, when exercised, involves the blood of two human beings. I cannot think of any other right that, when exercised, kills an innocent human being who never has a say. I cannot think of any other right that, when practiced, costs the individual $300. I cannot think of any other right that, when practiced, makes the provider of that "right" $300 richer. I cannot think of any other right that, when practiced, involves a woman "choosing" to experience--at best--cramping and bleeding and, at worst, suicidal tendencies, depression, and overwhelming guilt.

I'm a woman. I'm a feminist. It is BECAUSE I am a woman that I am against abortion completely. It is an illusion of a grotesque sense of entitlement, and it's only getting worse. We do not "deserve" everything we want.

why is everyone so upset?

Either abortion is right or it is wrong. If it is right and these are not "children" then who cares if she aborted all three. No life, no foul, no worry.

If abortion is wrong then naturally this would be another story of the disreguard for human life that our society has gone to and one would naturally be angry, but no more angry then for all the other children murdered in this way.

It is the angust of the pro choice crowd that confuses and frankly annoys me. Please explain to me why so many "pro-choice" people have their knickers in a twist? (does anybody still say that?) Why THIS abortion is so much more wrong than all of the others in the country. Why are the lives of these two twins so much more valuable than the hundreds of thousands of other flushed? This is the ultimate example of choice, the choice of who lives and who dies.

I suspect we all know the answer. I submit that if you find this story and this woman just plain wrong then perhaps it is time to rethink things.

I definitely have to go with you on this one, Michele. Despite my liberal leanings, the more evidence I see, the more I think it appropriate to consider abortion as equivalent to murder. In cases of rape, incest, or direct threat to the life of the mother or any of the unborn children, I would still think of myself as "on the fence", but in cases such as this one, where the decision appears based on such total selfishness in the absence of any health threat, I can see no reason to allow the practice.

"...Let's call a spade a spade, Amy..."

Nono, "spayed", I believe what's necessary is that this woman should be "spayed", not "spade". Unless of course it involves smacking her upside her liberal head with one...

I agree with P.Ingemi. If you are pro-choice, (I am not), I do not comprehend why this particular story, as revolting as it is, gets you more upset than a woman who quietly goes to get an abortion somewhere out of the way. Does the callousness of this story jar your senses? Doesn't pro-choice mean you are in favor of making the choice of what to do with your body? And the fetus/baby? Doesn't pro-choice refer to your belief that a woman has the right to do what she wants, when she wants, with her pregnancy? The fact that this Amy person advertised her story in the NYT has truly upset many pro-choicers, but some of them are upset for the wrong reasons, I believe (it bothers THEM), and I don't get it. Are pro-choicers drawing a line, in other words, that sure, you have the right to do what you want with your body, as long as you don't upset me and I have to read about it? It doesn't fly with me. As Ingemi said, you're either pro-choice or you're pro-choice with restrictions, apparently, and I believe that to be hypocritical. I would be interested in feedback.

We tried for five years before adopting our little boy.

She doesn't know what she will be missing. That little glob of tissue that his BIRTHMOTHER LOVED enough to not only give to us, but to trim his fingernails before she handed him to us so his three-day-old face would not have scratches when he came home, is asleep upstairs in his bed surrounded by Spiderman figures and smelling like heaven.

Truly, there are no words to describe the type of monster who would so callously do this.

No words.

God help us all that such self-absorbed people walk among us.

My wife and I were faced with a very similar situation about 8 years ago after extensive fertility treatments. The process in and of itself if excruciating, rather demeaning, and exhausting. But when it's you involved in it and the goal is to bring a life into the world to love and to cherish, it is well worth it. That is, for most of us with some sense of decency--unlike Ms. Richards.

I had to give my wife shots of "follicle stimulating hormone" for about five or six days at just the right time of the month. Each day, she would have to report to the fertility clinic for an ultrasound to determine if the follicles (which, I seem to remember, each housed an egg) had reached their optimum size for fertilization. When the time was right, and it was on a Sunday morning, I had to make my "contribution" to the effort. The clinic did something to the "contribution" to cleanse it of anything but the sperm, and then it was injected directly into my wife with some form of syringe.

Over the next few days we returned several times to find out via ultrasound how many follicles had been populated. The thing I vividly remember is how each day there was what I would term "exponential growth" of those that had been fertilized. So much for the "life doesn't begin at conception" crowd.

My wife probably had up to ten follicles that were ripe for fertilization. Three were ultimately fertilized, and the fertility MD actually reacted with concern and immediately brought up the option of "reduction".

Of course, we would have none of it--didn't even acknowledge the comment. Knowing that we would likely be bringing three new lives into the world was far more joyful than the level of concern we may have had for what this would do to my golf game, my wife's leisure time, or, God forbid, damning us to a life of buying in bulk from Sam's Club.

The pregnancy progressed. We found that we were having two boys and a girl, and we continued to see the growth of our children in our womb as the days passed. Everything seemed fine--until one morning when my wife was 24 weeks along and going into labor. We rushed to the hospital, and her condition stabilized within 24 hours.

However, the next morning one of the OB/GYNs found that her water had broken. An emergency C-section was pulled together--about twenty people in one O/R waiting for the arrival of what would seemingly be three newborns without a fighting chance at survival.

I could go into much more detail about the actual section and what we were feeling as it was over and we were just left there in a room to stare at each other and ask, "What just happened?" But suffice to say that our attention was entirely focused on the three lives in those isolettes.

They weighed a little over four pounds---aggregate. The "giant" of the crowd was 1 lb, 11 oz. All were about 12 inches long. My wedding band would fit over their hands and all the way up to their shoulders. Our daughter lived about ten hours. One son lived about ten days before his kidneys shut down and he developed an infection.

The third (who was the firstborn) fought everything thrown at him. His was a case where when the MD would tell us that maybe 5 out of 100 experience this problem, he was one of the five. He developed a hernia, had to have his paden ductus ligated (a valve around the heart that allows passage of fluid while they're in the womb) by a heart surgeon when he was about 2.5 pounds, and he remained on a ventilator for at least two months.

But he fought it all off. He was an inspiration to all around him. And he came home when he was four months old. Needless to say, my wife spent the majority of her waking hours for 120 days by his side. She had little concern for the fact that March through June are prime times for other things like Ms. Richards.

Today he is 7 1/2 and swims, paddles a kayak, rides his bike, drives my car around the block while sitting in my lap, can name most of the state capitals, recognizes John Kerry on tv and refers to him as "Frenchie", has a photographic memory (he noticed when we renewed license plates that the old one was gone because there were new numbers and letters on the car) and likes to drink coffee. He's not a normal little boy. He's simply extraordinary.

Don't tell me that life begins when the feet exit the birth canal. Don't bring any argument to me rationalizing partial birth abortion--or any form of abortion for that matter.

Don't ask me if we would have been better off "reducing" down to one and having a normal pregnancy. What if we had reduced him?

And, Ms. Richards, don't even kid yourself into thinking that this issue isn't going to revisit you in the future. First of all, you were so narcissistic as to put this into writing for future generations to behold that you won't be able to keep this dirty little secret from your child. The child will one day ask why you did away with its siblings and why you didn't do away with him/her. How can you possibly answer that with a straight face?

Our own experience has been that as our son grows older, his questions only expand regarding how he got here and why his brother and sister didn't make it. He asks if he was just stronger than them. He asks if he can go to heaven to be with them. He tells friends (adults & children) about what he thinks/knows of the situation.

Fortunately, we decided to bury our babies on our family plot in my hometown so that he (and his three younger siblings who arrived without the aid of fertility treatments) can visit them everytime we go to see my parents. The four of them get down on their hands and knees and kiss the tombstones. They bring pumpkins to them at Halloween. They bring rocks from their playground to put on their graves so that they'll have a place to play. They lay wreaths at Christmas.

And what form of dignity was granted to the two lives that Ms. Richards and her willing male accomplice "chose" to snuff out? Nothing whatsoever--they were allowed to dissolve in her womb and pass from her system like her next rubber chicken meal on her so important lecture circuit.

God have mercy on their souls. And God bless those who so crave to be parents but cannot make it happen naturally and who cannot afford adoption.

I'm trying to be objective; to give the benefit of the doubt to this so-called human. I can't. The tone of her article alludes to childbirth as some sort of recreation. Perhaps an achievement. As though she's learned tennis, golf and now the time has come to experience childbirth. But wait! She didn't expect three. She's called a Mulligan. Drop two into the sewer and go for par.

I'm sickened beyond belief. My wife and I are patiently trying to get to the point financially where we can have children. This woman sees children as some sort of accessories.

I fucking surrender.

I'm a frequent commenter to a lot of blogs, but I'm using a different pseudonym for this post, which I am copying to some other blogs. (Hope that's okay) This woman revolts me: what a shriveled-up soul! And doubtless she's liberal and claims to love everyone and seeks for the common good, & etc.

Why didn't she consider carrying the babies to term, and giving them up for adoption? There are thousands of couples desperately trying to have children, who would have gladly accepted them.

This is awful, but especially so for me right now. My wife became pregnant unexpectedly this past spring, with our third child. We were stunned, because we are in early middle age, but we started planning to receive the new arrival.

But she had an episode of experiencing sharp pain, early in the second trimester. We went to the hospital in the middle of the night, and the staff diagnosed placenta previa and placenta percreta, two rare uterine disorders which are life-threatening when they occur together.

We met with a couple of doctors, and they were all blunt: It isn't a case of losing the baby's life or the mother's life; it's a case of the baby's or the baby's AND the mother's. The child was normal, so far; but continuing the pregnancy entailed an immediate risk of massive, uncontrollable hemorrage at any time, and certainly during delivery.

The moral calculus was brutally cruel. During our first pregnancy, I didn't even want any amnio tests, because I was so righteous and noble that I thought we would receive any child, no matter what kind of defect it had. (I was overruled, and things were fine, glad to say.) Now here I was, having to agree to stop the beating heart of what would have been my son, in order to save the life of my wife.

I fell into spiritual anguish, and still am. I would have no third child. The elements would not combine into a new human life. The universe would not have a new organ with which to perceive itself. He would slip back into oblivion, before he ever emerged from it. This, out of the clear blue sky, was my test of where my commitment to the right to life drew the line.

So we went back to the hospital and received the potassium chloride injection into the baby's heart. They thoughtfully turned off the ultrasound monitor, but I peeked at theirs a couple of times. I saw a black & white beating heart one moment, and nothing a few minutes later. "All done," the doctor announced softly. We both wept, and the doctor consoled us with a practiced but well-appreciated manner. Now my wife has to carry the dead baby until chemical treatment makes it safe to remove it surgically. It's been a week, and will probably take a few more weeks.

And here this female creature is throwing lives away, because she doesn't want to discomfit her morally empty existence with anything that might make inconvenient demands on her lifestyle. Translation: She isn't ready to grow up yet. Christ! Tell me again about how compassionate the Left is in this country.

"It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish." -- Mother Teresa

I can understand the natural instinct to not want to make the decision for somebody else, the idea that, who am I to say what is right for someone else?

We hear it a lot, I remember quite a bit of it before the war, "Saddam is the Iraqi people's business.", "It's not for us to say how the oppressed PLO chooses to resist occupation." "It is not for white americans to say what people of color choose in Africa under Mugabe."

It is like a parent advising a child not to try drugs, not to get drunk or not to be sexually active when they were. Naturally one feels awkward, maybe feeling like a phony.

However I would rather bear the stigma of being a phony then give my kid bad advice.

I really wonder what would have happened if this Peter in the story who clearly felt something was wrong would have fought for the life of his children. In my mind he is the more guilty one. She believed this was not wrong, he knew it in his gut and kept his mouth shut.

I have a large mortgage, two sons and was just laid off, and I wouldn't trade places with either of those people for all the treasure in the world.

This woman is a travesty.

Way back in the mists of time, I was raped and became pregnant. I had an abortion, because I'd die before I carried the fetus to term. I remember telling someone who wanted to argue me out of it that I'd go and fling myself under a truck on the freeway if he got in my way.

Aside from that, I've decided not to be a mother. But how on earth could anyone, short of terrible necessity, and by that I mean twelve embryos or some other, impossible situation, do that. And how could she do it on these grounds?

Remove the survivor from her custody, right now, and tie her tubes. This woman is a monster.

"Making a law against an abortion is another matter. That sets a precedent of letting authorities take control of people's bodies."

That ship sailed a long time ago. The authorities forbid you to do a depressingly long list of things to your own body; most of this is theoretically "for your own good". Interestingly enough, the Supreme Court hasn't had jack to say about any of it, not the demand that we refrain from taking medicines for years while they decide whether it's safe to allow us to ask our doctors for permission to take it, not their willingness to steal our property if they catch us with drugs they disapprove of, not their insistence on forbidding millions of adults the right to drink a beer.

However, the Supreme Court recognizes that we have the absolute right to be free of the state's interference with respect to our own bodies when a woman proposes to remove her living offspring from it. That ruling has been in place for more than 30 years, and it has not served as a precedent for any limitations on the power of the authorities to take control of our bodies in any other situation. If you're pro-choice for that reason, you have to admit that it ain't working.

Think of it as evolution in action.

It's cold, but no colder than what she did to her twins. And the best thing of all -- her child gets to pick out her nursing home.

why don't you all go blow her up? self-righteous idiots.

alter, what's with the name-calling? THAT'S mature.

And, by the way, the majority of pro-life activists are non-violent. Thanks for perpetuating the violent anti-abortion caricature.

If you think she did nothing wrong, you can say so without being insulting.

A horrible story that should be read by everyone on both sides of the "abortion fence." It is the kind of article that really makes a person step back and take a good hard look at one's beliefs. Being more Pro-Life biased, this type of message directly from the horse's mouth just further reinforces my beliefs.

However, from reading through other posts it appears that many who claim to be Pro-Choice, i.e. Pro-Abortion, are disturbed by this selfish creature's actions. I for one am a little perplexed as to why this is so. If one truly believes that it is her "right" to destroy two of three children because it is "her body and she can do with it as she wishes", then why be upset by her attitude? If she showed even the tiniest bit of remorse would that make everything OK? I just don't get it...

I want to know...If and when Amy meets her maker, how does she explain what she did with all the children that were given to her?

How does she explain to the remaining child that nothing mattered about it (or the other two) until it was born, and that she allowed mere social circumstances to dictate to her which one of them lived?

That poor poor child. I hope Amy improves as a mother with time, for the surviving childs' sake as well as her own.

everyone, it's a selfish thing to HAVE a child. let alone 3, separately or at once. i really think the main reason people have babies is BOREDOM. get a dog or a cat. really.

I'm pro-choice but that woman is evil. And she doesn't even see it.

I don't understand this. The woman was going to carry the pregnancy to term anyway, so why not have all three and give the other two up for adoption? If she was concerned about being able to comfortably support three children on her salary, well that's somewhat understandable. But to abort two of them? I lost a three week old nephew to meningitis several years ago so I'm not terribly sympathetic. I really hope some terrible affliction stikes this woman down.

"everyone, it's a selfish thing to HAVE a child. let alone 3, separately or at once. i really think the main reason people have babies is BOREDOM. get a dog or a cat. really."

What does this MEAN? That doesn't make any sense! Some people DO have children for selfish reasons, treating children as if they are property, possessions, status symbols. I will grant you that. But being a parent because you simply love children isn't selfish at all. In fact, real parents want children because they are TIRED of being selfish. I couldn't believe how selfish I was before I had my daughter. Being her mother is the greatest thing I have ever done.

I also have two cats. It's not the same thing. If you don't want children, that's fine. But don't make ridiculous and false statements like the one you made in your last post. Okay?

Also, I don't understand why people who say they are 'pro-choice' are upset with her. Why shouldn't she be able to abort whomever she wants to? Isn't that what you're fighting for? Isn't that what you support? A woman controlling "her own body"? It is utterly hypocritical to say you are for "choice" and condemn this woman for what she did to two of her little ones.

I know "pro-choice" is the sexy, popular thing to be nowadays, but we really need to stop putting "choice" over human blood. Maybe if people weren't so afraid of being stigmatized by the "pro-life" label, more people would come out of the proverbial closet. But, of course, the "understanding" is that pro-lifers are zealous judgmental Christians who hate sex and preach abstinence.

Hey, I never preach abstinence, because I never practiced it. Also, there are a lot of "cool" and "educated" and non-religious pro-lifers out there. Don't believe me? Check out:


We need to stop doing and saying the popular thing because we're cowards. It is NOT anti-feminist to be against abortion--in fact, it is the most feminist stance one can take.

Abortion solves nothing. It might be a quick fix, but it's only temporary. Even if a woman goes through the rest of her life NOT "regretting" her abortion, nobody can say what good she might have done by letting her child live. Joni Mitchell gave her daughter up for adoption, and 35 years later, her daughter found her birth mother, and now Joni Mitchell has a relationship with someone she would have never known if she had aborted her.

Everything we do, everything we choose always comes back to us. For karma's sake, it is best to let others live. Nothing good ever comes from death. And if what you gain from aborting your child is....a diploma, sexual freedom, and an insistence on woman's "reproductive rights" ....is it really worth it? The truth is, you don't even know who you're aborting. And the likelihood of giving birth to a murderer or criminal is pretty small, so that's a dumb argument, you know?

Yes, quite sad. I know that she was concerned about her quality of life during her pregnancy, but certainly she could have given the children up to a loving family and had the same next-effect on her life post-pregnancy without killing two babies who had done no wrong of their own and were simply living as God created them. The self-centeredness here is appalling, yet absolutely indicative of the pro-abortion mindset.

while i agree that the woman appears heartless, we might want to step back and ask why. if one supports the right to abortion, which in most cases are elective, i dont understand why this story is so horrifying.

this woman did not want three children, she wanted one. further, selective reduction is common in multiples, especially three and above, for both the health of the mother and the heath of the developing fetus.

would you be so quick to judge if this woman found out her fetus had down's syndrome and could not raise such a child? i dont understand the outrage over this article. if we allow women to abort for any damn reason they please during the first trimester, why doesnt this fall into that category.

i think all this blather about being pro-choice but being outraged by this women is a bunch of shit.

Well, I'm pro-choice and I have absolutely no problem with what Amy Richards did.

The two embryonic children she killed hadn't yet developed functioning cerebral cortexts; they were incapable of feeling or thinking anything. Creatures with no history of thought or feeling are not capable of being harmed.

Amy Richards decided that she wanted to raise one child at a time. As a result of having this child (rather than triplets), there's a good chance she'll feel willing and able to have another child in a year or two, which she might not have been willing to have otherwise. Part of pro-choice is the idea that women have the right to control not only the size, but also the timing of their families, as much as medicine and biology permits.

In the end, this is better for everyone - not only for the parents, but also for the children who are born. (And it's not bad for the children who are aborted, because they're aborted before they become people).

Clearly, I'm in the minority here. But I don't see anything wrong with Richards choosing to control her reproduction; and I think the people here who have concentrated on insulting Richards personally are mainly showing that they have a shallow, "people who disagree with me are stupid or evil" approach to issues.

"The two embryonic children she killed hadn't yet developed functioning cerebral cortexts; they were incapable of feeling or thinking anything. Creatures with no history of thought or feeling are not capable of being harmed."

This is completely wrong. By time the babies were not only were their hearts beating, but they had brains, organs, and limbs. Your thinking is the sanitized and cruel "Planned Parenthood" way of looking at "fetus" as a non-human with no right to exist. What you're saying is--It's okay that Amy Richards killed two of her children because of their age and the way they look.

Women don't have the "right" to "choose" how many children they have, and exercise that "right" by killing the babies in their womb when it suits them. That is so fascistic and inhumane I can't get my brain around it.

At least, though, Ampersand is consistent in his/her pro-abortion philosophy, which only makes it easier to see how self-serving and cruel the pro"choice" argument is.

Jacqueline Byrne wrote: This is completely wrong. By time the babies were not only were their hearts beating, but they had brains, organs, and limbs.

With all due respect, Jacqueline, I never claimed that eight-week-old preborns lack hearts, brains, organs, or limbs. I said they don't have functioning cerebral cortexts, and that is correct. (As I understand it, the very earliest you could argue that the cerebral cortext exists in a working state is 20 weeks,and it's not really connected to the brain in a meaningful fashion until 24 weeks).

What you're saying is--It's okay that Amy Richards killed two of her children because of their age and the way they look.

I didn't say anything about their looks. I think it's okay that Amy Richards had two children aborted because, among other reasons, those children were physically incapable of having any thoughts or emotions, and I think it is our thoughts and emotions that make us people.

Women don't have the "right" to "choose" how many children they have, and exercise that "right" by killing the babies in their womb when it suits them.

If the women we're discussing are Americans, then they do have that right, except perhaps late in pregnancy. You may wish that they didn't have that right, and I respect that; but under current law they do.

I'm sorry that you resort to name-calling in your last couple of paragraphs. However, I just don't think that the life of a being without thought or emotion matters very much; what's valuable about life is the ability to think and feel. I don't think valuing thought and emotion makes me inhumane, self-serving or cruel.

If I'm ever left totally and permanently brain-dead by an accident, for instance, I wouldn't want my body kept alive. Although I know not everyone agrees, there are many people who feel as I do, and I don't think we're all inhumane and cruel.

I'm sorry if you think it's name-calling. But it DOES sound fascist, and if you don't like that label, then I'm sorry.

You think it's okay to kill someone based on their cerebral abilities? Sentient beings, mentally-retarded, blah blah blah. I'm sorry. It's a PERSON. A "fetus" IS a person. The pro-choice argument is that a fetus is NOT a person. But non-religious embryologists and bioethicists maintain that the "fetus" IS, in fact, a human PERSON, not just a human life. You don't BECOME a person, you ARE a person. It's not like we're in a cocoon, and then the chrysalis opens up, and suddenly we're a person. It's not like, oh, now we can actually solve mathematical equations, and that's what makes us a person.

It has NOTHING to do with cerebral ability or age or size. It has EVERYTHING to do with the "selective" killing of human persons who are deemed inconvenient for the mother.

Roe v. Wade's argument is based on a seventeenth century definition of pregnancy.....The "fetus" is considered "alive" at the point of "quickening." But in the last thirty years, not only have we found Roe v. Wade to be drafted with extreme prejudice against the unborn, but the plaintiff herself admitted that she was TOLD TO LIE. Within the last thirty years, ultrasounds, doppler tones, and prenatal care have shown us the activity in the womb of living human PERSONS, with their unique, unchanging DNA at the moment of conception. We're not talking about a soul here. We're not talking about God. We're talking about people. This is what a PERSON looks like at this age. The baby doesn't suddenly become a person when she comes through the birth canal. She is not suddenly a person when "viable." She is a person, period.

But to acknowledge the personhood of the unborn would be inconvenient, wouldn't it? It would put a damper on your plans. Because it would mean a great injustice is continuously being committed against a whole set of people in the womb--boys, girls, black, white, gay, straight. They are thrown out in the garbage. They wriggle away from abortionists' tools. They fight against the acid pumped into their hearts, the vacuum that sucks them from their home and turns them into puree.

Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton allow abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. Up until the day of "birth" the baby is able to be killed when the mother doesn't want it. America has the MOST liberal and offensive abortion laws in the world. Even FRANCE, for crying out loud, has a twelve-week limit on abortion.

Nobody has the right to kill anyone, for any reason. Especially an innocent human being that never asked to come into existence in the first place.

As for "choice"--hey, I'm pretty liberal, actually. I'm not a Republican, and I'm not pro-life for religious reasons. I don't believe in abstinence as the only answer. I don't care whom anybody sleeps with. But we know where babies come from. We know they are alive. We know what they do in the womb, and that they DO, in fact, FEEL THINGS, and recognize their mothers' voice.

To deny personhood to the unborn because it doesn't suit you isn't good enough. It is the greatest injustice this world will ever see.

Jacqueline, I understand that you don't think the ability to think and feel emotion has anything to do with personhood. But could you explain why not?

I'd argue that these are widely recognized as the most important traits of personhood; the ability to think and feel is why (in science fiction) it's easy for readers to accept that a brain in a jar or even disembodied glowy intelligence can be a person, but those same readers wouldn't accept an unthinking arm kept alive on life support as a person.

I'm also curious as to what you think of my last example - someone whose brain has been totally, utterly destroyed (liquified, nothing left, no doubts at all, and no hope for recovery) in an accident, but who is kept alive on life support. Would you really find it immoral to allow the body to die, in such a circumstance?

You don't BECOME a person, you ARE a person. It's not like we're in a cocoon, and then the chrysalis opens up, and suddenly we're a person.

No, it's more like the way an acorn gradually transforms into an oak. There's no single moment in which the acorn becomes an oak. Nonetheless, there is a difference between an acorn and an oak, and a huge difference between cutting a 100-year-old oak tree down and cracking an acorn. Your argument seems to be that we have to consider an acorn and an oak the same thing, when they're clearly not.

It has NOTHING to do with cerebral ability or age or size. It has EVERYTHING to do with the "selective" killing of human persons who are deemed inconvenient for the mother.

I'm afraid I must disagree: clearly it has something to do with age. IF the law had nothing to do with age, killing post-birth infants would be legal. It also has something to do with cerebral ability; I doubt anyone would ever be arrested for allowing an infant with anencephaly (which mean, born without a brain) to die, but allowing an infant with a brain to die is definitely a crime.

Within the last thirty years, ultrasounds, doppler tones, and prenatal care have shown us the activity in the womb of living human PERSONS, with their unique, unchanging DNA at the moment of conception.

With all due respect, I don't think ultrasounds and doppler tones show us much. We know that fetuses kick and have heartbeats; but I think there's more to personhood than kicking or having a heartbeat Consider again the example of a permanently brain-dead patient - who has a heartbeat but is still, for all meaningful purposes, dead. Nor is being able to kick or squirm a meaningful sign of a right to life; after all, insects kick and squirm, whereas Stephen Hawking does neither. Yet it's clear that Stephen Hawking has a right to life.

As for DNA, my hair and fingernails has my unique DNA, but I'm legally allowed to cut them. If my arm was cut off in an accident, it would have my unique DNA - yet I still think the personhood would reside with my brain, not my arm.

But to acknowledge the personhood of the unborn would be inconvenient, wouldn't it? It would put a damper on your plans.

I don't think the fetus isn't a person because to think otherwise would be "inconvenient;" I think the fetus isn't a person because I don't think a being that cannot think or feel emotion can meaningfully be called a person. You may not agree with me, but it's basic civility to at least grant that I'm being sincere and honest in my (possibly mistaken) opinions.

This debate will not go away in our lifetimes. Since pro-lifers and pro-choicers have to live with each other, let's at least try to be civil.

No wonder Amy didn't want to live the soccer mom lifestyle. It would have killed her feminist credentials

Huh. I live the soccer-mom lifestyle, and NOW hasn't picketed my house recently. Maybe there's a backlog?

I understand the folks who are opposed to abortion, period, and find this horrifying for that reason alone. I'm not understanding the unrealistic assertions that she could simply have given two of them up for adoption, or that clearly she's a wealthy Lincoln liberal with au pairs and maids (did I miss the financial statement attached to the article)? Look, argue that abortion is immoral, but interjecting invented facts about her lifestyle or about the ease of pregnancy, the likely result of a triplet pregnancy, or giving away children for adoption is just foolish and harms your argument.

And I agree with the pro-life folks here who are saying, dude, if you're pro-choice what's your issue? It's really stupid to say that abortion is OK, but only if you feel bad about it or if you can present a convincing sob story as to why you HAD to have one. (Wanted a career: bad. Condom broke: possibly, need more information. Likelihood of genetic defects: gee, I wouldn't want a kid like that, so okay.)

I'm a former prosecutor, and worked on many murder cases where the defendants received life with parole. That's where they belong.

I would love to help put Amy Richards in prison for life. It's where she belongs.

As do the women mentioned in other posts who had abortions they now regret, and women who have taken the Pill or used the IUD, or the morning-after pill. I'm sure your former office treated murder as murder, and didn't simply prosecute people whose killings were unusually selfish or reprehensible.


No, Roe did not allow elective abortions throughout pregnancy. It allowed states to restrict abortions in the second trimester and ban them in the third. Casey is more elastic, but states are perfectly able to ban elective post-viability abortions after Casey. You may disagree with the viability distinction, but your claim that elective abortions are fine whenever is inaccurate.

As for whether McCorvey lied (about rape), it has no bearing on anything, and my understanding was that she wasn't "told" to do anything.

Talking about trees is disingenuous. We are talking about human beings. Again, even pro-choice bioethicist Peter Singer maintains that life is a continuum. Nobody BECOMES a person. And the "acorn" in this case would be the ovum and the sperm. THOSE are the seeds. The "fetus" IS, in fact, a person, which most of the medical community teaches in their schools.

If the child is wanted, THEN it becomes a person. "Fetus"--which was a Latin term of endearment for "little one"--was admittedly used to dehumanize the small persons that live in the wombs of their mother. It does not mean they are not persons, it only means that is the stage of life--in the continuum of life--that those people are in at that moment.

As for Norma McCorvey, she has a good number of testimonies which admitted to her not knowing what her lawyers were TELLING her to say. You haven't heard anything--that's fine. It doesn't make it suddenly not true. In 1974, we didn't really know what we were doing. The Supreme Court made a terrible decision, without regard to further damage this ruling would eventually do. Women's lives aren't better, and more and more women are pro-life. In fact, there were two polls, one conducted by Faye Wattleton, that showed over half of all American women are pro-life. A HUGE majority would like to see more restrictions on abortion.

When I said Roe made abortion unlimited, I was referring to the terms under which Blackmun "defined" the word "health." As a matter of fact, he gave a HUGELY open-ended definition. Medical? Fine. Psychological? And economical? And financial? And social? What is that? That is an undefined definition.

Woman's rights and the rights of the unborn are not, in fact, opposed. It is hard for the pro-choice movement to see this, but the rights of both persons are dependent on the other, and it is a mistake to pit one against the other. Again, I am against abortion BECAUSE I am a woman.

I wish the discussion over at my blog was this good.

Jacqueline and Ampersand, nicely done. I'm obviously with Jacqueline here, but I appreciate how what could have become nasty became civil and thoughtful instead. Thanks.

Women's lives aren't better

You know, whatever one may think of abortion, I really don't see how you can make such a statement. Women's lives are better than they were in 1984, let alone 1974.

The majority of people would like abortion restricted--but only in ways that do not prevent them from having access to abortions should they need one. (You may remember Dan "Suddenly Pro-Choice" Quayle reacting to the question about what he'd do if his own daughter became pregnant.) People who work in abortion clinics are very familiar with this syndrome--patients who justify their own choice to abort by attacking the motives of other women, essentially saying all abortions other than their own are wrong. Barbara Ehrenreich's recent column in the New York Times even quotes a woman who tried to say her abortion wasn't really abortion, you know, because the fetus wasn't healthy.


That makes no sense. McCorvey didn't know what her lawyers were telling her to say? McCorvey came up with the rape story on her own--and, again, it has no bearing on anything, legal or moral. Whether Roe was a good decision does not hinge on the circumstances under which the class representative in that particular case became pregnant. (Nothing in the Roe decision turns on the alleged rape.)

See here: "She said she claimed a rape led to the Roe pregnancy because she thought that was the only way to get an abortion."

Or here: "So McCorvey made up a story -- she had been raped, she told her doctor and two lawyers. She signed an affidavit on condition of anonymity, and the lawsuit began."

Blackmun said: "On the basis of elements such as these, appellant and some amici argue that the woman's right is absolute and that she is entitled to terminate her pregnancy at whatever time, in whatever way, and for whatever reason she alone chooses. With this we do not agree."

Most of the references to maternal health in Roe dealt with the state's asserted interest in protecting said health, e.g.:

With respect to the State's important and legitimate interest in the health of the mother, the "compelling" point, in the light of present medical knowledge, is at approximately the end of the first trimester. This is so because of the now-established medical fact, referred to above at 149, that until the end of the first trimester mortality in abortion may be less than mortality in normal childbirth. It follows that, from and after this point, a State may regulate the abortion procedure to the extent that the regulation reasonably relates to the preservation and protection of maternal health.

He also said:

If the State is interested in protecting fetal life after viability, it may go so far as to proscribe abortion [410 U.S. 113, 164] during that period, except when it is necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother.

He didn't define "health." He had no occasion to. It was left to the facts of individual cases, as it should have been.


Nobody BECOMES a person.

Right. Because before a person begins to exist, there wasn't "anybody" to "become" that person.

And the "acorn" in this case would be the ovum and the sperm. THOSE are the seeds.

No, the zygote is the seed. It contains the full complement of chromosomes for a person, just as the acorn contains the full complement of chromosomes for an oak tree. And in the same way that an acorn is not a tree despite containing all the genes of a tree, a zygote is not a person.

The "fetus" IS, in fact, a person, which most of the medical community teaches in their schools.

The medical community most certainly does NOT teach that a fetus is a person. That is a legal and philosophical question, not a medical one.


Even FRANCE, for crying out loud, has a twelve-week limit on abortion.

That's not true. France, like many other European countries, nominally restricts elective abortion to the early phase of pregnancy, but the law provides for exceptions that allow abortion much later. In practise, these exceptions can be used to justify virtually any abortion. They include ill-defined circumstances, like "health" reasons and "socioeconomic" reasons. French abortion law explicitly grants the pregnant woman herself the right to decide whether her particular situation falls within one of the statutory exceptions, effectively making abortion for any reason available after the nominal cut-off.

The only person who should have been "selectively reduced" was Amy Richards.

Why does it take 2 deaths to make you pro-"choicers" upset?

The majority of abortions are for the reasons of "I don't feel like it." Why not mourn the THOUSANDS of single babies that die at abortion mills daily? Maybe the fact that they are twins makes them seem more like persons to you?

"Abortion is pro-woman" my butt! There are at least 21 organizations in this country for women going through the horror of post-abortion syndrome. And many abortion mill employees are in the business of "selling abortion" and making a killing on a woman's fear.

It's a life, Hon.