Civil rights group sues US bishops over anti-abortion policies

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit againts the US Conference of Catholic Bishops for allegedly being negligent for barring certain treatments or the mention of the treatments such as abortion.

The lawsuit was filed in the case of a pregnant woman whose life was at risk from premature labor. The group says Mercy Health Muskegon hospital didn’t tell the woman that she should consider terminating her pregnancy because the bishops’ guidelines barred mention of abortion.

The Catholic News Agency, however, quoted a professor of medicine as saying the lawsuit wrongly claims that abortion was medically necessary in the case of the woman.

“Abortion is never necessary to save the life of the mother,” said Dr. Brian C. Calhoun, a professor and vice-chair in the obstetrics and gynecology department at West Virginia University-Charleston.

Calhoun, who specializes in high-risk pregnancies, rejected the deliberate killing of an unborn patient in a medical emergency.

“Abortion is not medicine. It is something else entirely,” CNA quoted Calhoun in its report.

Calhoun said that patients may need to be delivered prematurely. Even if the premature baby ends up dying, this is different from an abortion, in which a doctor directly and deliberately “kills the baby, usually by surgical dismemberment.”

He suggested that the lawsuit is an attempt “to make abortion seem like a great idea.” He noted that surgical abortions also have “numerous” complications, including bleeding, lacerations, incompetent cervix, and infection.


Catholic News Agency
AP/Fox News
The New York Times
Image: Catholic News Agency

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