Santorum’s Struggle with Personhood and Choice

This morning I read an article about how Rick and Karen Santorum went through a terrible health scare in 1996. It involved their unborn child, in the second-trimester, and making a decision to save Mrs. Santorum’s life at the cost of carrying a fetus full-term. I feel badly that this family had to go through this experience; I am sorry Mr. Santorum had to make an incredibly difficult, heartbreaking and personal decision based upon the well-being of his wife and their family. Mr. Santorum had to make medical decisions that resulted in choosing the life of his wife’s over the possibility that his unborn child may live. The concept of  “personhood” was real for the Santorums, it was personal, and it was medical. It was not mandated by law in 1996.

Rick & Karen Santorum

Rick & Karen Santorum - Image by Gage Skidmore

This is something I find interesting… Mr. Santorum’s decision to save his wife’s life, while difficult, was a choice he had. It could have gone the other way. He could have chosen to test “fate” or “faith” and have the doctors treating his wife not induce labor and try to keep the fetus and his wife alive through the pregnancy.

I am sorry Mr. Santorum had to make such a difficult choice – to save Mrs. Santorum’s life they had to induce labor of a fetus that doctors told him would not survive outside the womb. In the second trimester, there are three abortion procedures used, one is an Induction Abortion. I am sorry incredibly private decisions they made about their family and a medical crisis has become fodder for the public. However, I am glad that at the time, they were able to could make a medically sound decision, a private choice and without government interference.

If Mr. Santorum’s desire to have state and federal “personhood” laws go into effect, he has signed on to support this, it would mean that any products and activities that kill or destroy human beings “at any stage of development” will be murder, as long as it was an innocent “human”. This would include inducing labor, when the doctors specifically state that the fetus cannot survive outside the womb, to save a mother’s life. And that would have meant that Mr. Santorum’s painful and personal decision to save his wife’s life and keep their three children’s mother alive would not have been his to make at all. Rather it would have been the government’s.

It’s a shame it appears hypocrisy, pandering and power-mongering is winning over practical life experience.

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