Footnotes for "Amicus Brief in Webster v. Reproductive Health Services" by Christine Torre, et al.
- Roe, 410
U.S. 148-152, 163.
- W.M. Hern, M.D., Abortion Practice,
101 (1984) (emphasis supplied.)
- Thornburgh v. American College of Obstetricians
and Gynecologists, 476 U.S. 747
(1986) and Akron v. Akron Center for Reproductive Health, Inc.
462 U.S. 416 (1983).
- A small sampling of these testimonies is
included in this Brief. For the Court's convenience, Amici
have compiled hundreds of additional testimonies of abortion victims
in the volume lodged with this Brief entitled "Rachel Weeping."
Testimonies of members of Women Exploited by Abortion are included
in D. Reardon, Aborted Women, Silent No More (1987), copies
of which have also been lodged with this Brief. Additional testimonies
of aborted women are contained in Appendix D to the Brief Amicus
Curiae of Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council.
- Documentation of legal abortion deaths
has been included in the volume lodged with the Court under the
caption "When Legal Means Lethal." Amici have
documented only a small number of the legal abortion deaths which
have occurred throughout the Nation, and have focused on a study
of the abortion industry in one urban area, Los Angeles, California,
which is thought to be representative of the manner in which abortions
are performed in most other urban areas in the United States.
476 U.S. at 833 (O'Connor, J., dissenting).
- D. Horan & T. Balch, "Roe v. Wade,
No Justification in History, Law or Logic," in Abortion
and the Constitution 58 (1987) (hereinafter "Abortion
and the Constitution").
- Id. (citations omitted).
462 U.S. at 456 (O'Connor, J., dissenting) (citation omitted).
- Cox, The Role of the Supreme Court in
American Government, 114 (1976).
- There was by no means unanimity of opinion
in the medical community regarding this "fact" in 1973.
Ely, "The Wages of Crying Wolf: A Comment on Roe v. Wade,"
82 Yale L.J. 920, 942, n. 117.
- As Justice O'Connor's powerful dissents
in Akron and Thornburgh point out, even the types
of regulation supposedly permitted in Roe failed to pass
constitutional muster as new medical "findings" by the
Court invalidated regulations previously thought to have been
constitutional. Thornburgh, 476 U.S. at 828-33 and Akron,
462 U.S. at 452-72.
- Hilgers & O'Hare, "Abortion Related
Maternal Mortality: An In-Depth Analysis," in New Perspectives
on Human Abortion 69-91 (1981).
- While there are certain medical risks associated
with pregnancy and childbirth, studies examining maternal mortality
and morbidity "arise primarily from a small group of high
risk patients." A. Saltenberger, Abortion Choice or Chance?
62 (1987) citing "Most Mother Child Mortality Seen in Small
High-Risk Group," 16 Ob. Gyn. News, 13, May 15, 1981.
Yet, the vast majority of abortions are performed on young women
who are not aborting due to medical risks. Thus the women
and young girls who are most likely to obtain an abortion
are those less likely as a group to be at risk for medical
complications associated with pregnancy and childbirth. See Appendix
C "Abortion in America" in Brief Amicus Curiae of Focus
on the Family and the Family Research Council.
- Abortion and the Constitution,
supra at 77 quoting Comment, "Technological
Advances and Roe v. Wade: The Need to Rethink Abortion Law,"
29 UCLA Law Review 1194, 1199, n. 41 (1982).
- Kaunitz, "Causes of Maternal Mortality
in the United States," 65 Obstetrics and Gynecology
(May 1985); see, e.g., Manaskie v. Rosenblume, No. 15028-83
(N.Y. 1983) in 4, No. 2 Medical Malpractice Verdicts, Settlements
and Experts (Feb. 1988) ($75,000 verdict for 24-year-old woman
who suffered a vaginal tear and a ruptured cervix during a first
trimester abortion and suffered two miscarriages thereafter) and
testimonies of women included in this Brief.
- One study has indicated that the medical
risks of abortion taken together produce an immediate complication
rate of ten percent--that is, physical complications of abortion
in 300,000 women annually. Frank, "Induced Abortion Operations
and Their Early Sequelae," 35 J. Royal College of General
Practitioners 175-180 (April 1985).
- See, e.g., McNair v. Rubin, No.
4492-81 (N.Y. 1988) reported in 4, No. 2 Medical Malpractice
Verdicts, Settlements & Experts (Feb. 1988) ($701,500
verdict for estate of 24-year-old mother of two who died of amniotic
fluid embolism after a second dose of saline solution to induce
- A. Saltenberger, What Every Woman Should
Know About Legal Abortion 28-32 (1982) (hereinafter "Legal
Abortion"). See R. Castadot, M.D., M.H. P., "Pregnancy
Termination: Techniques, Risks, and Complications and Their Management,"
in Fertility and Sterility 5 (1986) (hereinafter "Castadot");
G. Wulff, Jr., M.D. FACOG and S. Freiman, M.D., "Elective
Abortion Complications Seen In a Free-Standing Clinic," 49,
No. 3 Obstetrics and Gynecology 351 (1976); A. M. Kimball
"Deaths Caused by Pulmonary Thromboembolism After Legally
Induced Abortion," 132(2) Am. J. Ob. & Gyn., 169-74
(Sept. 15, 1978).
- Castadot, supra at 13.
- Castadot, supra at 10, citing C.
Tyler, Jr., "Epidemiology of Abortion," 26 J. Reprod.
Med. 459 (1981).
- Some critics of non-hospital abortions
maintain that because a free-standing clinic may lack blood banks,
a staff skilled in resuscitation, and surgical facilities to deal
with emergencies that the risk of death and morbidity may be higher
in non-hospital abortion. Legal Abortion, supra at 39.
Lack of adequate resuscitation equipment may contribute to a
greater number of anesthesia and analgesia deaths outside a hospital
setting. Id. citing D.A. Grimes, "Comparative Risk
of Death from Legally Induced Abortion in Hospitals and Non-Hospital
Facilities," 51 Ob. & Gyn. 323-326 (March 1978).
Query whether some of the legal abortion deaths at the Inglewood
Abortion Clinic and Hers Medical Clinic in Los Angeles discussed
below might have been prevented if they occurred in a fully equipped
- Doe v. Bolton,
410 U.S. 179, 193-95 (1973) (striking down a Georgia statute requiring
hospitalization for all abortions).
- Doe v. Bolton,
410 U.S. at 91-92 (citation omitted, emphasis supplied).
- See D. Reardon, Aborted Women, Silent
No More (1987) (the culmination of three years of research
and interviews with aborted women).
- Adapted from A. Saltenberger, The Threat
of Abortion: When Legal Means Lethal (1978).
- The Center for Disease Control has made
some sweeping claims for the "safety" of legal abortion.
One spokesman for the CDC was quoted as saying that "[i]t
is one of the safest surgeries performed." The Abortion
Dilemma, Press-Telegram (Special Reprint of Articles appearing
July 14-22, 1985) at 10, col. 1.
- Other legal abortion deaths are also described
herein and in the volume entitled "Rachel Weeping" which
has been lodged with this Brief. The inherent dangers of death
from legal abortion are also demonstrated by the death of Diane
Boyd in October 1981 after an abortion performed at Reproductive
Health Services, one of the named plaintiffs in the instant case.
Diane Boyd, a 19-year-old retarded black woman who underwent
a court ordered abortion at the plaintiff clinic died of cardiac
arrest after the administration of the drugs Sublimaze and Valium.
"Clinic Didn't Study Records Before Abortion, State Says,"
St. Louis Globe Journal, Nov. 10, 1981, at 3A; "Clinic
Declines Comment on Abortion Death Report," St. Louis
Globe Democrat, Nov. 11, 1981, at 6A.
- These included the dispensing of medication
not ordered by physicians, failure to sanitize reusable items
between uses, not following proper infection control techniques,
failure to keep an operation register that would detail complications
suffered by patients, and overcrowding in the recovery room which
allegedly often held four patients when there was only enough
equipment to monitor two patients. "State Again Finds Violations
at Inglewood Abortion Clinic," Daily Breeze, May 14,
1985, at 1B, col. 1
- "'Battlefield Conditions' Reported
at Hospital in Inglewood," Los Angeles Times, Dec.
3, 1987, at pt. II, 8, col. 4.
- At least two other young black women died
after abortions at Inglewood--23-year-old Cora Mae Lewis in 1983
and 22-year-old Yvonne Tanner in 1984.
- "'Battlefield Conditions' Reported
at Hospital in Inglewood," Los Angeles Times, Dec.
3, 1987, at pt. II, 8, col. 4. A complaint was made by County-USC
Medical Center that the abortion clinic had transferred its patients
in unstable condition and without notice to the Medical Center's
emergency room, in violation of a federal law against "dumping"
patients in emergency rooms.
- See When Legal Means Lethal in the
volume lodged with this Brief.
It is common practice for abortionists to "rush" through
abortions in two to five minutes, despite the increased risk of
cervical trauma and uterine lacerations resulting from such practices.
See note 43 infra.
- See, "When Legal Means Lethal"
in the volume lodged with the Court. The highly inflammatory
remarks attributed by several newspapers to Dr. Edward Allred,
owner of the largest chain of abortion clinics in California,
had caused some to attribute the abortion deaths of several Black
and Hispanic women to racial prejudice. "On the Edge of
the Racist Pit," The Daily Californian, October 14,
1980, at 4B, col. 1. "Doctor Labeled 'Racist' in Abortion
Suit," at B-1, col. 1 (describing a $14 million lawsuit filed
against Dr. Allred in connection with the abortion death of 16-year-old
Patricia Chacon in which it was alleged that Chacon had "received
substandard medical treatment as a result of her race and ancestry,
rather than medical treatment based on her . . . condition and
needs," id. at col. 2, quoting Jack Schuler,
attorney for Patricia Chacon's parents). The following remarks
upon which the allegation was made had been attributed to Dr.
Allred in a story which appeared in the San Diego Union:
"Population control is too important to be stopped by some right-wing
pro-life types. Take the new influx of Hispanic immigrants.
Their lack of respect of democracy and social order is frightening.
I hope I can do something to stem that tide; I'd set up a clinic
in Mexico for free if I could. Maybe one in Calexico would help.
The survival of our society could be at stake. . . . The Aid
to Families With Dependent Children program is the worst boondoggle
ever created. When a sullen black woman can decide to have a
baby and get welfare and food stamps and become a burden to all
of us it's time to stop. In parts of South Los Angeles having
babies for welfare is the only industry the people have."
- "Doctor's Abortion Business is Lucrative," San Diego
Union, B-1, col. 1 (Oct. 12, 1980).
Dr. Allred's aversion
to government subsidies did not prevent him from collecting approximately
$3 million in public subsidies in 1980 for performing abortions.
Dr. Allred's statements reflect the same philosophy as demonstrated
by Margaret Sanger, the founder and heroine of Planned Parenthood
when she said "[t]he most successful educational approach
to the Negro is through a religious appeal. We do not want the
word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population,
and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if
it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members."
E. Drogin, Margaret Sanger, Father of Modern Society 33
(1986), citing Gordon, Woman's Body, Woman's Right: A Social
History of Birth Control in America 33 (1976).
- "Hospital Shut Down As Health Risk
Will Reopen For Abortions Tomorrow," Los Angeles Herald
Examiner, Feb. 12, 1988, at A-1, col. 1 and A-15, col. 1 (quoting
Los Angeles County's supervisor of hospital inspections as saying
"It does seem sort of silly though doesn't it? If they're
so unsafe they can't keep their [hospital] license, why should
they be able to operate as a clinic?").
- "For Three Women A Safe Medical Procedure
Turned Deadly," Los Angeles Herald Examiner, Feb.
22, 1988, at 1, col. 3.
- Id. at
A-7, cols. 2-3.
- Id., at
A-7, cols. 4-6.
476 U.S. at 765-68 (refusing to recognize that the information
which the Pennsylvania legislature required be reported to Pennsylvania
public health officials concerning physical complications of abortion
serves the legitimate goal of advancing the state of medical knowledge
concerning maternal and fetal health).
- See the
discussion of exploitative practices by the abortion industry
in Section 11, infra, J. Wilke, M.D. & B. Wilke, Handbook
on Abortion, 78-80, 89 (1979). See also Pamela Zekman
and Pamela Warrick, "The Abortion Profiteers," Chicago
Sun Times, special reprint Dec. 3, 1978 (original publication
Nov. 12, 1978). Zekman and Warrick reveal how undercover investigators
in abortion clinics found that clinic employees routinely checked
off "no complications" before the surgery was even performed."
- State of California, Department of Vital
Statistics, Death Records, Table A-2, Maternal Deaths By Selected
Causes of Death, California, 1960-1984 (By Place of Residence)
in California Vital Statistics (1986). It is clear that the Department
of Health Services either knew nothing of the deaths which occurred
in 1983 and 1984 when it issued its report, or for some other
reason simply did not report them as abortion deaths. In either
case, this is but one example of the underreporting of deaths
from legal abortion which takes place across the Nation, and is
illustrative of why conclusions drawn from the current data cannot
be relied upon. Failure to report abortion deaths is not limited
to California. In an investigation of only four abortion clinics
of the twenty operating in Chicago in 1979, the Chicago Sun
Times uncovered 12 unreported abortion deaths. Aborted
Women at 109 (citation omitted). Even when previously unreported
abortion deaths such as those that occurred in Chicago and Los
Angeles are uncovered, they are generally not included in the
'official' total since they were not reported as such on the original
death certificate. Id. at 109 citing Wilke, Handbook
on Abortion 81-92 (1979).
- Roe, 410
U.S. 163-166 (stating that the abortion decision was to be made
"by the physician after consulting with the woman considering
an abortion . . . the abortion decision is inherently, and primarily
a medical decision and basic responsibility for it must rest with
- Doe v. Bolton,
410 U.S. 179, 191-192 (1973), citing United States v. Vuitch,
402 U.S. 62, 71-72 (1971).
- See statement of former abortion provider
appearing in the Appendix at p. 27a.
- Allred "likes to spend no more than
five minutes on each abortion," and "is proud of having
eliminated needless patient-physician contact." "Doctor's
Abortion Business is Lucrative," The San Diego Union,
A-3, col. 6 and A-14, col. 4 (Oct. 12, 1980). See statement of
former abortion provider appearing in the Appendix at p. 27a.
- "Doctor's Abortion Business is Lucrative,"
The San Diego Union, Oct. 12, 1980, at 3A, col. 5-6 at
A-3, col. 5-6.
- Planned Parenthood of Central Missouri
v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52, 67 (1976).
476 U.S. 747 (1986) and Akron, 462 U.S. 416 (1983). In
Akron, the Court struck down a provision requiring information
regarding the status of the pregnancy and fetal development, holding
that, although the States might legitimately further an interest
in preferring childbirth over abortion, the Akron ordinance,
by requiring specified information, restricted access to abortions.
462 U.S. at 444, n. 33.
- Information regarding fetal development
is clearly within the scope of the medical information to which
women should have access in order to give their informed consent
to an abortion. Logic, as well as attention to the testimony
of countless women who have undergone abortions, dictates that
severe emotional and psychological trauma may result when a woman
undergoes an abortion without a clear understanding of the nature
and development of the child to be aborted and discovers this
information after the fact. Nonetheless the Thornburgh court
obviously feels women have no right to know this information if
its effects may be "inflammatory" 476 U.S. at 762, n.
10, if it may cause her "anxiety," 476 U.S. 762, or
horror of horrors, if it may "persuade her to withhold [her
consent] to the abortion" 476 U.S. at 762. The essence of
informed consent is the provision of precisely this kind of information,
which has the capacity to influence a patient's decision regarding
a proposed medical or surgical procedure. Many of the testimonies
of aborted women set forth in this Brief, in the Appendix, in
the volume lodged with the Court and in Aborted Women have
a recurring theme--if only I had known that my baby was
alive, what my baby looked like, I would never have chosen
- See autopsy report, along with the follow-up
investigation into Baby Arias' mother's abortion in the volume
entitled "Rachel Weeping" which has been lodged with