Patterico's Pontifications


New York Times: No More Political Cartoons

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:45 am

[guest post by Dana]

Back in April I posted about a cartoon published in the international edition of the New York Times that depicted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a dachshund wearing a Star of David collar, leading a blind President Trump, who holds a leash and wears a yarmulke. The cartoon was widely condemned, and the publication eventually apologized for running it. The decision to publish the cartoon was blamed on a lack of editorial oversight.

The New York Times has now announced that the publication will be doing away with all political cartoons in their international edition (the national edition does not print political cartoons):


This seems like an extreme reaction. While the NYT may have been considering doing away with political cartoons before the Netanyahu cartoon kerfuffle, given that the decision comes so soon after having to apologize for its publication, it’s reasonable to assume that it tipped the scales. But here’s the thing, if the Netanyahu cartoon was run because of a decision made by “a production editor who did not recognize its anti-Semitism,” wouldn’t the solution be for the NYT to hire more experienced and informed editors who could provide the necessary oversight? Giving the NYT the benefit of the doubt here, I’ll ask, why is it so difficult for a leading publication to avoid the appearance of peddling anti-Semitism that they have to throw the baby out with the bathwater?

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Abortion Activist Hears Abortion Survivor’s Testimony, Still Refuses To Condemn Infanticide

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:00 am

[guest post by Dana]

Melissa Ohden is the survivor of a failed saline infusion abortion. In 2012, she founded the Abortion Survivors Network (ASN) to reach out to other survivors. The organization provides emotional, mental and spiritual support to those who have found themselves in a similar situation as Ohden’s. Ohden has written about how the grim event shaped the mission of her life:

I am the survivor of a saline infusion abortion attempt. When my 19 year old, biological mother entered the hospital for the abortion attempt in August of 1977, she estimated herself to be 18 to 22 weeks pregnant. Medical review of my birth records indicate that she was likely closer to 24 to 28 weeks pregnant.

Over the course of a five day period, I endured the deliverance of this toxic salt solution into the amniotic fluid around me, while numerous rounds of Pitocin were delivered to my mother with the intent to induce labor and dispel my dead body from the womb. When I was delivered in bed by a nurse that fifth day, I was believed to be dead. However, instead of being scalded to death from the outside-in, I had survived!

Gratefully, the doctors and nurses stepped in and provided me with the medical care that I needed to survive the abortion attempt and my premature birth. Although doctors believed that I would likely not live for very long, and if I did survive, would be disabled, I am now 32 years old and am perfectly healthy, happy and successful.

Last week, Ohden testified before the U.S. House Judiciary Committee about abortion legislation. Also speaking to the committee was Hollywood actress, Busy Phillips. Phillips, who had an abortion at age 15, testified that, had she aborted in her native Arizona today, she would have had to obtain parental consent, wait 24 hours, undergo informed-consent counseling, and, most offensively, “give the state a reason why.” :

“Well, here is mine: my body belongs to me, not the state,” she declared. “Women and their doctors are in the best position to make informed decisions about what is best for them. No one else.” Phillips falsely claimed that criminalizing abortion won’t “stop anyone” from committing one, and is only about “shaming and controlling women’s bodies.” She asserted that she has the right to abort other human beings because “I am a human being that deserves autonomy in this country that calls itself free.”

As if involving responsible parents would be a terrible thing. As if it isn’t a parent’s very job to help their children wisely navigate the painful landmines in life and to be able to come out of it as unscathed as possible. And what is wrong with waiting 24-hours? Is there a problem with a woman reconsidering her decision, and perhaps even changing her mind about having an abortion? Finally, if Phillips herself claims that women and their doctors are in the best position to make informed decisions, wouldn’t informed-consent counseling provide even more information critical to making said informed decision? It seems fairly important to understand all aspects of a medical procedure, especially one designed to end a pregnancy. Since when isn’t the empowerment of women vital?

In response to Phillips’ statements, Ohden asked her:

“How do you reconcile my rights as a woman who survived a failed abortion with what’s being discussed here today?” she asked. “There’s something wrong when one person’s right results in another person’s death. There’s something deeply disturbing about the reality in our world that I have a right to an abortion but I never had the simple right to live.”

It was a compelling question, and one that Phillips was unable to answer. In fact, she worked hard to dodge and dance around the question. I suspect her efforts at avoidance were not unlike Ohden in the womb, attempting to escape the needle piercing her little body with toxic saline, poisoning her from the inside out as her delicate skin was burned. Here is the exchange between Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas and Phillips:

Gohmert referred back to Ohden’s testimony when questioning Phillips, asking her if “somebody who has survived an abortion like Melissa Ohden has a right when she’s born to life, to control her body when someone else doesn’t take her life.” Phillips responded by “thank[ing] her for sharing her story,” … quipping that “although I played a doctor on television, sir, I am actually not a physician.”

“No, but you’ve given very compelling testimony, and I appreciate you’ve obviously given these issues a lot of thought,” Gohmert replied.

Phillips tried to deflect again with the standard pro-abortion refrain that “I don’t believe that a politician’s place is to decide what’s best for a woman and, you know, it’s a choice between a woman and her doctor,” and claiming she “can’t speak to [Ohden’s] experience because I was not there.”

“Well I just wondered how far your feeling about that went, because once she’s born, would you agree that she is a person in being?” Gohmert asked.

“Yeah, see, I’m not speaking about birth, sir, I’m speaking about abortion,” Phillips replied.

The willful disconnect is jarring. While I understand that it is a necessary disconnect for rationalizing abortion, one has to consider the foul root of decay dwelling deep in the heart and mind for one to be unable to agree that, yes, Ohden was a person who was born alive, and that Ohden, the tiny, living baby had a right to more than “comfort care” – she had a right to live. It’s very troubling that someone could be in such close proximity of Ohden giving first-hand testimony about her miraculous survival, yet still be unable to admit that yes, when she was born, she was a person in being. Phillips’ level of self-deception and denial is the stuff that haunts the soul when there are no distractions and one is alone with only their seared conscience in the middle of night when darkness has fallen.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Amash Quits House Freedom Caucus

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 1:27 am

[Headline from DRJ]

The Week:

GOP Rep. Justin Amash quits House Freedom Caucus amid disagreements over Trump


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