Baby In The Womb
The following is a transcript of the February 25, 1990 airing of
The John Ankerberg Show. This transcript was taken from an audio
tape, so some names might be misspelled. For this, I apologize.
JOHN: Ninety percent of the 1.5 million abortions that are
committed in this country each year take place during the
first three months of pregnancy. That is, the first week
through the twelfth week. ProChoice people who argue
that a woman has the "right" to have an abortion admit
that there is no doubt that the child is alive, and that
it is human. But because it is *small*, or not fully
formed, they believe the child is not yet fully human.
Or not a person. Therefore, they think they can kill it.
Now, on this program you are going to see the scientific
evidence that PROVES the ProChoice argument is wrong in
asserting that the growing child is no more than a blob
of tissues or the "product of conception." You will see
the marvelous stages of a child's development in the
womb. You are also going to see the abortion techniques
used today to destroy human life.
But I'd like to begin with a tragic story. A father
walked into the delivery room of a hospital, and in a
rage, threw his newborn son against the floor, and killed
him. This man was charged with murder, and put in jail.
Ironically, he was punished for an act -- namely, killing
his son -- that could have been done by an abortionist
the previous day, without any penalty.
When I read this account, I thought, "There MUST be
SOMETHING wrong with our laws!" Why is a child only
protected twenty-four hours after it is born, and not
twenty-four hours before? Did the child change in some
significant way? No. Biologically, we know that there
is no difference in the child. So then, why does the
location of the infant inside or outside the womb make a
crucial difference to its moral status?
And let me ask you: Do you think there SHOULD be a
difference in the moral status of say, a nine-month-old
child in the womb as compared to a newborn baby? If you
say "no," then going back in time, when WOULD you judge
that the baby has changed SO SIGNIFICANTLY that it
doesn't DESERVE the right to be protected as a living
Well, to help you answer this question, let's look at the
baby as it develops in the womb through the different
stages of pregnancy. First, this is how the unborn child
looks in the womb at month five. That's right. Not the
ninth, eighth, seventh, or sixth month, but the fifth
month --- just twenty short weeks after conception. I
want you to notice that his body is fully formed. At
twenty weeks, sounds provoke him. His mother must
contend with his bouts of hiccups and repeated kicks and
punches. Babies at this stage relate to the moods and
emotions of their mother. This child's heart now pumps
THREE HUNDRED GALLONS of blood per day. Because of
modern technology, twenty-week-old babies in the womb are
now viable; that is, they can survive outside of their
mother's womb. Because of these scientific facts, the
majority of Americans believe abortion is morally wrong,
and should be LEGALLY PROHIBITED at this stage of
pregnancy and after. In fact, the state of Pennsylvania
has already enacted laws prohibiting abortion after
viability -- which they set at 24 weeks.
But if you would not permit abortions to take place at
this stage, what about earlier? Say, at four months?
Well, here is a sixteen-week-old child in the womb. You
can see that his face is taking on facial expressions.
Fine hair is growing on his head. His eyebrows and
eyelashes are apparent. His heart is regularly pumping
the blood through his body.
Do you think it is right that we permit children like
this to be destroyed? But if not at *this* stage of
pregnancy, how about at three months?
Here you can see the development of this twelve-week-old
baby's arms ... hands ... fingers ... and toes. His
entire body is sensitive to touch. The brain is
developed, and allows independent movement of limbs so
that the tiny baby can turn its head ... curl and fan
his toes ... and open and close his mouth. A twelve-
week-old child's genitals show a clear sexual
differentiation, and already contain primitive egg or
I'd like you to listen to Dr. Bernard Nathanson's
comments concerning a twelve-week-old unborn child in the
NATHANSON: What we are looking at here is a depiction of the
development of this child in its prenatal stage of life,
from virtually the very beginnings, to the end of that
stage. We have here, a child at four weeks ... at eight
weeks ... at twelve weeks ... at sixteen weeks ... at
eighteen weeks ... at twenty weeks ... and at twenty-
eight weeks. As you can see, there is no revolutionary
or dramatic change in the form or in the substance of
this person throughout this developmental stage.
Now this little person, at twelve weeks, is a fully
formed, absolutely identifiable human being. He has had
brain waves for AT LEAST six weeks; his heart has been
functioning for perhaps eight weeks; and all the rest of
his human functions are indistinguishable from any of
JOHN: Let me ask you: Would you allow a child at twelve weeks
to be killed in the womb? Well, if not at twelve weeks,
would you allow children to be aborted at eight weeks?
The science of fetology tells us that from eight weeks to
twelve weeks, every organ in the baby's body is already
present. The heart beats similar to an adult's. The
stomach produces digestive juices. The liver makes blood
cells. The kidneys begin to function. Taste buds are
forming. Fingerprints have developed. The eyelids and
palms of the baby's hands are sensitive to touch. The
baby can suck its thumb at nine weeks.
Then science tells us, between the first and second
month -- actually only forty days from conception -- the
baby's brainwaves can be detected, recorded, and read.
The baby's facial features, along with the ears, nose,
lips and tongue, form with clarity. At eight weeks, the
eyes form and darken. The pigment is first produced
around the thirty-fifth day. Eyelids cover most of the
eyeball by the forty-fourth day; and soon after will seal
to protect the developing light-sensitive cells. From
eight weeks on, the child can feel pain. Science tells
us, from this time until adulthood, the changes in the
child's body will only be in dimension, and in the
refinement of working parts. The boy or girl growing in
the womb truly looks like a tiny, miniature baby at eight
weeks. Do you think that it's right that our society
allows these innocent ones to be destroyed?
But if not at eight weeks, or after four weeks, there's
only one other month that is not accounted for: that is
the thirty days that reach from the moment of conception,
to the fourth week of pregnancy. Concerning this time,
we MUST remember that it is now an undisputed scientific
FACT that life begins at conception. On what basis does
science state this?
It is on the basis that when 23 chromosomes from the
father unite with 23 chromosomes from the mother, a
unique, human, individual life -- consisting of 46
chromosomes -- comes into existence. No new genetic
information will be added to this individual person from
the moment of conception, until death.
It is also a scientific fact that 23 chromosomes from the
mother carry some 15,000 genes, that unite with the
15,000 genes carried by the chromosomes from the father.
At the moment of conception, these genes -- like letters
of a Divine alphabet -- mix and unite to spell out the
UNIQUE characteristics of the new person. The genetic
coding from the moment of conception is FIXED, and it
determines the color of the eyes, hair, and skin. The
facial features, the body type, and even certain
qualities of personality and intelligence.
All of this is why conception does not produce a
POTENTIAL human being, but rather an actual HUMAN BEING
with vast potential.
Science tells us that within 6 to 12 hours after the
nuclei have merged -- and the chromosomes have exchanged
genetic coding -- the fertilized egg divides into two
cells. After a time, the two divide into four; the four
into eight, and so on, creating after some two hundred
and sixty-six days a newborn baby, weighing approximately
7-1/2 pounds, and containing trillions upon trillions of
cells. By the end of only the third week, the backbone,
spinal column and nervous system of the child are already
forming. Simple kidneys... a liver ... and the digestive
tract are already taking shape. The baby's heart begins
to beat at three weeks -- just 21 days from conception,
and sets the rhythm of life for the rest of the
individual's existence. The brain begins to form and
soon will send out impulses through the child's body.
On the twenty-fourth day, the child has no arms or legs.
Then suddenly, just two days later, tiny buds for arms
appear; and in just another two days, legs begin to
Now what does science say about human life developing in
the womb? Is it fully human? Or is there some stage of
cell division before the body forms in which this life is
NOT human and then BECOMES human? Well, Professor Roth
of Harvard University Medical School has answered this
question clearly. He says, quote:
It is incorrect to say that the biological data
cannot be decisive. It IS scientifically correct
to say that an individual, human life begins at
conception, when the egg and the sperm join to
form the zygote. This developing human always is
a member of our species in all stages of its
Endquote. Dr. Bongiovanni, professor of medicine at the
University of Pennsylvania Medical School has written,
Standard medical texts have long taught that
human life begins at conception. I am no more
prepared to say that these early stages of
development represent an incomplete human being
than I would be to say that the child prior to
the dramatic effects of puberty is not a human
being. This is human life at every stage.
Endquote. World-famous geneticist Dr. Jerome Lejeune,
professor of fundamental genetics at the University of
Descarte, Paris, France, declared this, quote:
Each individual has a very unique beginning the
MOMENT of its conception.
Endquote. The chairman of the Department of Medical
Genetics at the Mayo Clinic, Professor Hymie Gordan,
testified before the congress of the United States,
By all the criteria of molecular biology, life is
present from the MOMENT of conception. Now we
can say UNEQUIVOCALLY that the question of when
life begins is an established, scientific fact.
DR. C. EVERETT KOOP: I think that, ah, we have a very
interesting phenomenon in this country and that is the
tremendous interest and enthusiasm about test-tube
babies. And anybody who knows about the birth of the
first one, Louise Brown, has to recognize that, ah, life
begins at conception. If you could put a sperm and an
egg in a petri dish, and get a human being nine months
later -- with nothing being added to it except to put
that fertilized egg back in its mother's uterus -- you
KNOW that life begins at conception.
DR. BERNARD NATHANSON: Life in the uterus, before birth, is a
smooth continuum... and, ah, in that sense one cannot
designate at some point when life begins. There is no
barmitzvah in the uterus. It is merely life beginning
when it really begins. Now we've created it in the test-
tube; we've watched it start. We have seen the spark
struck in invitro fertilization -- when the sperm meets
the egg -- so that the question of when life begins is no
longer metaphysical, theological, legal, moral,
religious... it is absolutely scientific now and it has
been established to begin at conception.
JOHN: What difference does it make that human life begins at
conception and continues through all the stages of
development? Well, the important difference is this: IF
human life DOES begin at conception, then abortion -- at
ANY STAGE of the child's development, from conception on
-- is the killing of innocent human life. To deny this
fact is scientifically impossible. But in spite of the
scientific evidence, abortions continue.
Now, how ARE these human children destroyed in the womb?
I'd like you to listen as Dr. John Willke, president of
the National Right to Life organization in Washington,
D.C., explains the different techniques abortionists use
to kill these developing children. Also addressing this
issue is the former Surgeon General of the United States,
Dr. C. Everett Koop.
DR. JOHN C. WILLKE: Abortions are done with different techniques
at different ages. The earliest method of abortion --
that is when the baby is very small -- is a menstrual
extraction. That is an approach through the vagina,
through the mouth of the womb -- the cervix -- and a
small little tube is inserted and the developing baby is
... "disrupted," if you please, and, something like a
miscarriage is precipitated.
The most common type would be what we would call a
suction aspiration abortion. Now this would be
approximately two weeks late ... three weeks late for her
period, and up till, maybe about when the baby's about 3
months old. This is a vaginal approach. The
abortionist stretches open the mouth of the womb -- the
cervix -- then inserts into the cavity of the uterus --
the womb -- a hollow plastic tube about this long [1
foot]. This he attaches to a powerful suction. It's
about 29 times more powerful than your vacuum cleaner.
This rips the developing baby's body apart, and pulls it
out through that tube. Then the abortionist must cut and
slice the deeply-rooted afterbirth from the inner wall of
the womb. Now that is a "suction abortion."
At approximately the same age -- or a little beyond,
sometimes -- a D & C is done. Dilatation and Curettage.
Here the abortionist uses a loop-shaped steel knife,
reaches into the womb from below, slices the body of the
developing baby into pieces, drawing it out, and then
cuts the afterbirth away from the wall. Now that's up to
about three months.
Then there's a D & E -- Dilatation and Evacuation. This
is done after twelve weeks and up to as late as ... oh,
maybe four months. Here, we see the abortionist
stretching the cervix very wide open, but now he has a
very technical problem. The bones of the baby are
solidly calcified and the skull is very hard. What's
done here is that -- without any anesthetic -- the
abortionist reaches up into the womb and seizes a part of
the body of the baby, usually a leg or an arm, twisting
and tearing ... tears it off and away from the body of
the baby. The baby, feeling pain, does not have any
anesthetic. Bleeding is extreme. The abortionist
returns in there with this grasping, pliers-like
instrument, tearing more parts of the body away, snapping
the spine, and finally, the mechanical problem is to get
the skull out and so he usually has to crush the skull in
order to bring it out. That is a D & E.
Four months and above, another method is salt poisoning.
Here, the abortionist injects a needle through the
woman's abdomen and into the fluid sac -- the bag of
waters around the baby -- injects a poisonous solution of
concentrated salt. Now, recall the baby was breathing
and swallowing as early as three months. This is done at
four, four-and-a-half, five, six months. So the baby
breathes and swallows in this poison, and is slowly
poisoned by it. It takes two ... three hours usually to
kill this baby, sometimes convulsing as she dies, which
the mother feels. Then the mother's body gets the
message, goes into labor, and delivers vaginally a dead
baby about 24 hours later.
Well, mostly dead. Sometimes these little tykes are
still alive. They have even been known to survive to be
INTERVIEWER: Is there growing concern over late term abortions?
DR. C. EVERETT KOOP: No question about that. Ah, people are
easily led into thinking that abortions is unimportant.
If you use a semantic-kind of smoke-screen and refer to
the unborn baby as a fetus, or an embryo, or some
tissues, or the "product of conception" -- very hard to
use those terms to refer to a late abortion that looks
just like the baby next door.
DR. WILLKE: There's another type, a "prostaglandin" type.
Prostaglandin given at any stage of pregnancy causes
INTENSE labor. VIOLENT contractions of the uterus, and
vaginal delivery of the baby at whatever age the baby is.
Now, in the literature put out by the Upjohn Company --
we doctors always have "complications" and "precautions"
-- one of the complications: LIVE BIRTH [from the use of
prostalandin as an aborticide].
Okay, the final type of abortion is a mini-cesarean
section, or a hysterotomy. Now this is just like any
other cesarean section: the mother's abdomen is opened,
the womb is opened surgically, pulled apart, the baby is
extracted and taken out.
Now, cesarean sections are very common. After this, the
baby is handed to the nurse who sucks out the phlem, gets
the little kid going, puts her in the warming bed -- the
incubator -- gives the baby all that tender loving care
Not now. This little kid has a contract on her head and
so the abortionist takes the baby out, cuts the cord,
throws the baby in the basin, and lets her die. And if
she doesn't die, it may be a head under water, or the
placenta on her face, and choke her to death.
You see, the baby, according to the abortionist, must not
survive, EVEN THOUGH SEPARATED FROM THE MOTHER.
DR. KOOP: And therefore late abortions are ... are rather an
embarrassment to people ... and remember that, ah, late
abortions are very commonly viable. And, ah, one of the
saddest things to me about the whole abortion business is
that what was a few years ago a womans RIGHT to an
abortion has now become a womans RIGHT to a dead baby
FOLLOWING abortion. And I think that's almost criminal.
JOHN: Now the Feminist Majority in their film, "Abortion for
Survival" have shown a suction aspiration abortion that
takes place in under two minutes. In their film, they
quickly show the audience the contents of the uterus:
what they call the "product of conception." And then
they say, "You see. This doesn't LOOK like a real baby."
So you may see for yourself what goes on, here's a
film clip and the testimony of some ladies that
experienced a similar aspiration abortion:
MONICA: ...um ... actually started to do the abortion, it was
at THAT moment, that for the first time, I realized that
was my BABY that was being aborted. That this whole
thing was NOT just a sickness -- as they tried to make it
seem -- but a child, my OWN child that was being
destroyed in that abortion. It was EXTREMELY painful,
physically. And, of course, I was going through a lot
emotionally, too. And, I, as soon as it was over I just
thought, "Thank God I'm alive." That was my first
INTERVIEWER OR THERAPIST: Yes, and you, Cindy, how did you feel?
CINDY: Well, physically it was painful. Not, um, it was VERY
painful and they did NOT tell you it would be this
painful ... you know ... and I was scared. I was scared
to death. I just lay on this table -- and I couldn't
really think of anything. I just -- all this physical
pain -- and I heard the vacuum, aspirator, whatever the
term is, it was on the floor, like next to me. And I
heard this humming noise, and I'm thinking, "Oh, my God,
Cindy, what are you doing? Now your baby --- it's --
and they're taking it from you, and it ... it ... just
like Monica had said, at that point I'm thinking ... I'm
hearing this noise, I'm laying there thinking, "My baby
... they're taking it from me!" and it was too late.
JOHN: What the Feminist Majority did NOT show in their film was
a close-up view of the "product of conception." If they
HAD shown you a close-up view of the remains of ANY
abortion done just 42 days after conception, you would
have seen small hands ... small feet ... arms and legs.
You would have seen twisted bodies, and crushed heads.
Yes, these babies are small, but is that any excuse to
Even the first 30 days after conception when a human life
is developing through the early stages of cell division
and multiplication, there is no doubt SCIENTIFICALLY that
it is ALIVE, and it is FULLY HUMAN.
The scientific facts lead us to conclude that even at
THIS stage, abortion is the premeditated killing of human
What reasons can be given for allowing abortion at any
Science has shown us that the growing child is NOT just a
blob of tissues; it's NOT part of the mother's body in
any way. Rather, science has shown us that the child in
the womb is an INDEPENDENT human being. Therefore,
wouldn't you agree that these innocent human beings --
these children in the womb -- they MUST be protected?
If we value human life at all, how can we allow abortions
THE JOHN ANKERBERG SHOW
P.O. BOX 8977
CHATTANOOGA, TN 37411
þ EZ-Reader 1.14 þ Abortion is a woman's WRONG!
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