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Seattle Catholic
A Journal of Catholic News and Views
28 Sep 2001
UW's Baby Organ Business

Scavenging aborted fetuses for marketable body parts

Alan Fantel, head of the University of Washington's Birth Defects Research Laboratory, had his home picketed this month by a group of anti-abortion activists. Out of his UW lab, he runs the nation's largest provider of fetal tissue to research labs. Along with his four colleagues, he makes regular visits to Seattle-area clinics and hospitals to collect parts from aborted babies.

They then sift through the child's remains to identify the needed body parts, which are packaged and sent off by Federal Express. 1

Their lab has a list of several hundred researchers to whom they market fetal tissue. The demand has been growing over the years and in 1999 they supplied almost 3,000 samples. Fantel expressed cold confusion at such protests against him.

"We've been doing what we've been doing calmly and quietly for 30 years." 2

It's not too surprising that during that time, the local media hasn't covered these actions, nor were the protests against him deemed "newsworthy".

Kansas and the FBI

A documentary on ABC television's "20/20" exposed a Kansas City man, Miles Jones, who was involved in a similar practice which catered mostly to the Canadian market. The program exposed:

...his macabre but lucrative harvesting arrangement with a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic in Kansas. Jones had a price list for baby body parts asking $999 for a brain, $150 for skin, and $325 for a spinal cord. 3

The controversy and outrage over the program sparked an FBI investigation launched in March of 2000. The conclusion of the probe was that "after thorough review of the issue ... there was no violation of federal statutes" by the marketing of aborted baby body parts. 4

The stem cell connection

In the George W. Bush school of ethics, outrage over these practices are misplaced. Since the children are already dead, shouldn't their body parts be put to some use? It's not difficult to see that, like the recently federally-funded stem cell experiments, this UW lab's "business" creates a direct demand for dead children. Even such, most people with half a soul realize that being involved with this ghastly industry in any way is evil. At least doctors researching on stem cells aren't sorting through tubs of bloody baby limbs, heads and torsos looking for the best organs to sell (typically the brains and hearts of late-term abortions). The fact that people can perform such acts without any repulsion or guilt shows how pervasive the doctrines of the abortionists have become. 5

Alan Fantel defends his work by saying that it is for crucial medical research and the bodies would have been discarded anyway. Elenor Schoen, a spokesman for Human Life of Washington, counters that:

"Our concern — besides the whole abortion mentality and devaluation of human life in general — is that you cannot erase the wrong of abortion by doing something 'positive' with the fetal remains gotten from the procedure." 6

The moral implications are obvious and shouldn't be lost on pagans who refuse to use cosmetics tested on bunny rabbits. Even such, the claim to support "crucial medical research" fools only the government bureaucrats approving the grants. Almost ten years ago, doctors believed themselves to be on the verge of a medical breakthrough by injecting fetal tissue into the brains of Parkinson's victims. 7 Since then, the subjects who participated in the experiments "have suffered frightening, devastating, disabling, probably irreversible side effects ... even death" 8

The culture war

How much longer are abortionists going to be able to hide behind empty slogans of choice, liberty and rights? They are involved in a gruesome business — a fact that remains unchanged by the hospital-like atmosphere and their patriotic television commercials. These are not defenders of freedom, they are violent murderers who have convinced an amoral society to endorse their satanic sacrifice. Not only do they have millions of dollars, but also the support of politicians and the media. They are allowed to spread their propaganda to our children in secular and parochial schools.

"We now live in a pagan society which is at war ... with everything we hold dear."
The over-used term "culture of death" is much too soft for these murderous pagans. Catholics must see them for who they are and fight with everything in them. This is not the time for "tolerance" or polite discussion. This is not an issue where the "opinion" that child murder is a virtue can be in any way "respected". Supporters of this industry must be reviled in the very same way as child molesters, cannibals and terrorists.

This is a war — and just because it isn't very bloody now (for adults) doesn't mean it will stay that way.

"We now live in a pagan society which is at war, either implicitly or explicitly, with everything we hold dear. In this sense, our present situation resembles that of the early Christians in pagan Rome. The conflict between those who believe in God and his moral law and those who do not has been called a 'culture war'. So far it has been, for the most part, verbal, but it can and might become bloody. The first indications of a bloody culture war are the treatment of pro-life demonstrators and counselors outside abortion mills. The Roman pagans worshipped idols and killed Christians for not doing the same. Pro-abortion Americans have made a 'sacrament' out of abortion — they have made it into something 'sacred'. Thus the pro-lifers who oppose them are considered to be blasphemers. And in the past such 'blasphemers' have been put to death." 9

The first steps toward eradication of dissenters have been taken. Some areas have outlawed certain abortion protests and the publication of literature deemed "hateful". In a pagan society, if the lives of the children and the elderly are already not worth preserving, can the lives of "intolerant hate-mongers" be far behind?

Peter Miller
Seattle, WA

1 — 9/1/01
2 Ibid
3 — 9/7/01
4 Ibid
5 Indeed, I'm having trouble writing about it without becoming sick
6 — 9/1/01
7 Newsweek — 12/7/92
8 The Wanderer — 9/20/01 / New England Journal of Medicine — 3/8/01
9 K. Baker, Homiletic & Pastoral Review — Aug-Sep, 2001
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