Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Assist With That Abortion Catherina Cenzon-DeCarlo, Or Else!

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PregnantA hundred years ago, doctors and the media condemned abortion as an abomination. Now, if you refuse to help perform one, you are the abomination.

That’s what a nurse at Mount Sinai Hospital in Brooklyn New York found out early this summer. And it’s why she has filed the suit against the hospital, which falsely told her she endangered the life of the mother, she claims, and punished her with fewer overtime hours than she had typically received. The hospital didn’t fire the Filipina immigrant, but it behaved badly enough to invite a lawsuit.

The trouble for Catherina Cenzon-DeCarlo began on May 24, The New York Post reports, when she arrived at work and received an assignment to assist with a late-term abortion, a particularly gruesome affair that involves dismembering the unborn child. This Mephistophelean aspect of late-term abortion is one reason the partial-birth debate was such an easy one for pro-lifers to win. Even the most ardent abortion advocate can’t really defend hacking a baby to pieces. Then again, some can and do.

Anyway, the hospital ordered Cenzon-DeCarlo to help with the abortion, the Post reports, because the patient had preeclampsia, which could kill the expectant mother. Preeclampsia is simply high blood pressure and protein in the urine. It surfaces at about 20 weeks of pregnancy. It generally isn't dangerous, but it can worsen and be life threatening. “Bosses told the weeping Cenzon-DeCarlo the patient was 22 weeks into her pregnancy and had preeclampsia, a condition marked by high blood pressure that can lead to seizures or death if left untreated,” the Post reported. According to the lawsuit, one supervisor “claimed that the mother could die if [Cenzon-DeCarlo] did not assist in the abortion.”

As well, the Post reports, “[t]he day after the procedure, Cenzon-DeCarlo filed a grievance with her union. Later that week, she was cornered by two supervisors who told her if she wanted any more overtime shifts, she would have to sign a statement agreeing to participate in abortions, the suit says. The next month, Cenzon-DeCarlo was assigned to one overtime shift, rather than the eight or nine she usually received, the suit claims.”

Funny thing is, hospital officials knew she would not help perform abortions. Her uncle is a bishop in the Philippines, and when she interviewed for her job, she boldly told the hospital she should not help murder the unborn.

Witnessing the abortion “was like a horror show unfolding,” Cenzon-DeCarlo understandably says, but what one can’t understand is why supervisors lied to her about what would befall the patient if no abortion were performed.

Abortion is not the treatment for preelcampsia, according to the Mayo Clinic Web site: “If you have preeclampsia, the only cure is delivery of your baby.” In other words, an abortion wasn’t necessary. It was merely preferred.

A treatment used for the condition is magnesium sulfate as an anti-convulsant. Cenzon-DeCarlo says the mother was not in danger and never received magnesium.

The hospital, of course, won’t comment on the suit, which left offering an opinion to the usual leftists. A spokesman for the New York Civil Liberties Union’s Reproductive Rights Project unbosomed the usual boilerplate bromide: “The law provides protections for individuals who object to performing abortions, but at the same time, health-care professionals are not permitted to abandon patients.”

As one commenter on the Post story observed, one wonders what the story would be if Cenzon-DeCarlo were a Muslim. The hospital would likely be in trouble for “intolerance” and disparaging the nurse’s religious beliefs.

Maybe. But the important question is how the suit plays out if the hospital doesn’t settle.


R. Cort Kirkwood, managing editor of the Daily News-Record in Harrisonburg, Va., has been writing about American politics and culture for more than 20 years. Mr. Kirkwood has written for Chronicles, The New American, National Review, The Remnant, The Christian Science Monitor, The Wall Street Journal, The Baltimore Sun, The Orange County Register, Taki’s Top Drawer online magazine, and For several years, he syndicated a column, “The Hard Line.” Mr. Kirkwood is the author of the nonfiction title, Real Men: Ten Courageous Americans To Know And Admire, published by Cumberland House.

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