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June 01, 2009

Slaying of George Tiller

The cold-blooded murder of Dr. George Tiller of Wichita is another reminder for us to focus on the key issue at stake. We need to educate our population about keeping our bodies healthy and safe from rampant sexually transmitted diseases and, above all, practice control over our sexual decisions.

Saying “no” is not an option in cases of forced sex. Thankfully in cases of unplanned pregnancy that threaten the life of the female (not the male), safe, legal options are available. We should strive to support and maintain community health centers such as Planned Parenthood and educational standards that inform honestly about the sexual options available to people of all ages.

If the intent is “just say no,” say it about violence and war. Every act of violence to a health-care facility or practitioner or patient seeking health care is an act of violence to society. One never knows when a loved one will need the services offered.

I applaud Dr. Tiller for his years of service to all those whose lives were entrusted to his care.

Aryn Roth
Kansas City

Mike Hendricks’ column “Abortion foes lose moral standing” (6/1, National/Local) is the most convoluted, idiotic rant I’ve seen in a long time. His attempt to heap blame for George Tiller’s death on anyone and everyone who supports the pro-life movement is ridiculous.

According to Hendricks, all of us who believe in protecting the unborn are responsible for this one nutcase who surfaced and pulled a trigger. This kind of logic defies explanation.

Kathy Colnar
Overland Park

I’m wondering if it’s safe to keep the murderer of Dr. George Tiller in an American prison. Maybe we need some special facility offshore somewhere.
Jeff Tamblyn


Keith Williams3

Man tell me about it, I got into a scuffle all because this 21 year old kid was tired of me telling him to get a job or I will repot him to his PO. Had the nerve to get mad at me for trying to help, believe me I get your points, I'm just not radical about it.


Too bad more people aren't pro-get up off your butt and get a job.

Keith Williams3

My son was born anencephalic, we knew from the beginning that he wasn't going to make it, We also knew that Nelson could have caused problems for Miles (they are twins) But with our faith in God we went the entire pregnancy with Nelson in the womb fighting for life. It wasn't up to us if we should abort that baby so we left it in Gods hands. He blessed us to hold and be with Nelson for 6 hours before he passed away. In circumstances like this I wouldn't expect everyone to do what we did but if the doctor felt in any way that it would cause serious problems for the other baby and mother then you have to make that decision based of that info.

All though against abortion I know that God wouldn't want his children to be stupid but in mast cases we don't seek guidance from him and simply make drastic decisions on our own. That's just my little experience I went through and what I did.


I couldn't agree with you more, Kate. Thank you for stating that so perfectly.


K-dog and Sammy, Probably 99.9% of people who are pro-life would make exceptions to spare the life of the mother. But it is my understanding that “substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function” can include a woman’s mental health, and that’s where taking the life of a viable fetus seems unreasonable to me. I also wonder what medical conditions causing substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function would be cured by the death of the viable fetus, but not by delivering the baby early.

Sammy, you ask a tough question about the other 130 cases, where the fetus is not viable. My daughter lost her first baby two and a half months into her pregnancy, and a close family member recently lost a baby four months into the pregnancy. If they had been told their babies were going to die, I think they would have hoped against hope . . . I can’t answer your question. But let me turn it around, how can the collective “we” feel good about the 192 lives that could survive outside the womb that were never given the chance.


Thank you hajkar.

Wikipedia confirms that Dr. Tiller was tried and aquitted for consulting with a second physician that was not considered independent to certify that continuing pregnancy would cause the woman "substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function." Late term abortions are legal in KS with two certifying, independent physicians.

Kate - The report you linked reports that all 192 (pg. 9) of the 22+ weekers met the condition above, but as you say, none of those were considered life threatening to the mother. The basis for determination of "substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function," was "Gestational and diagnostic information provided by the referring physician and other health care professional(s) as well as examination and interview of the patient by attending physician."


Very good link Kate, lots of information.

Why is it that you mention the 192 viable fetuses were from mothers that were not suffering from medical emergencies, but no mention that "The patient would suffer substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function if she were forced to continue the pregnancy." ? Does substantial and irreversible impairment need to become an emergeny before a late term abortion is acceptable?

Additionally, if we move to outlawing late-term abortion, what happens to the 130 cases where the fetus is not viable? Do we force those mothers to go through delivery of a non-viable fetus so that the collective 'we', that is not involved in the situation, can feel better about ourselves?


I’m sorry for Dr. Tiller’s family and I hope they are able to find peace. I’m sorry for Roeder’s family, and what he’s put them through. And I’m sorry that both of these men wasted their lives.

Jeanette, I think that changing legislation can change people’s feelings - the law is a powerful teacher. But I don’t think there’s much hope of changing the law any time soon.


“Thankfully in cases of unplanned pregnancy that threaten the life of the female (not the male), safe, legal options are available.”

According to KDHE records, in Kansas in 2008, 192 viable fetuses were aborted at 22 weeks of gestation or more. None of these abortions were to save the life of the mother. None were performed on women who were suffering medical emergencies. http://www.kdheks.gov/hci/abortion_sum/08itop1.pdf


I bet I can write a survey that would push the numbers in any way that I wanted.


Actually JayHawkinMo, pro-abortion activist Eileen Orstein Janezic was convicted in 1996 for killing pro-lif activist Jerry Simon. In 1998 vocal pro-abortionist Bryan Looper atempted to kill pro-life sentator Tommy Burkes.

Stifled Freedom

Aryn, you know how to blur the lines dont you? I dont see rape or STDs as the issue at all. I see the issue as murder.

Not all abortions are (or have been) done out becuase of rape or STDs....certainly not the late term abortions anyway. The number of abortions related to rape is a very very small percentage. And STDs are not a reason to get an abortion.


No, hajkar, I don't think it will change the poll numbers, because I think most clear thinking on the right and left agree that Roeder does not represent average run of the mill pro-life people. It's no one's fault, but his.


As a tax protester and militia nut, I'd speculate Roeder was also a tea-bagger and a big fan of talk radio.

I can imagine Roeder sitting around listening to O'Reilly, Glenn Beck or Darla Jay screaming to no one in particular, "kill the libruls, kill 'em all!!!"

And, as it turns out, he was capable of doing just that.


Tiller was prosecuted and acquitted.


No doubt Roeder violated the law and should be prosecuted to its full extent.

How about Tiller? Did he violate the law?

It was my understanding that he very likely did. I'm no expert on Kansas law, so I would appreciate anyone who could comment on that. If he did violate the law, why wasn't he prosecuted?


"The good thing is we might see that happening since for the first time over 50% of the population identify themselves as pro-life."

That same Gallup poll shows a huge majority of Americans also believe that abortion should remain legal. Unlike demagogues of the Right or Left, most people understand that their personal views and the law can indeed be two separate things.


And you don't think this incident might change those poll numbers that have been so trumpeted about of late?


The only label I can think of for this whole discussion is ridiculous. As my granddaughter would say, "Way too much drama".
Even though I believe it is murder, you cannot change people's feelings about abortion through legislation. It has to come through a change in people's hearts.
The good thing is we might see that happening since for the first time over 50% of the population identify themselves as pro-life.


In these days of having to place a label for everything "pro-birth extremists" takes the cake!

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