A House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday heard testimony regarding the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PreNDA), which would make it illegal for abortionists to perform an abortion sought on the basis of the child’s race or gender.
The bill lays sanctions against anyone coercing a woman to abort based on race or sex, abortionists who perform such a procedure, and any abortion provider that accepts funds in the name of racist or gender-biased agendas.
Steve Mosher of the Population Research Institute told the hearing that “anyone who has lived in and worked with the Asian-American community, as I have, is aware that the practice of selectively aborting female fetuses is disturbingly common.”
Mosher pointed to the research of Asian-Indian physician Sunita Puri, who found that a staggering 89 percent of women carrying girls aborted during the study, and that nearly half had previously aborted girls. For these women, it is social pressure, and not personal choice, that often spells the sentence.
“These women told Puri of how they were the victims of family violence; how their husbands or in-laws had shoved them around, kicked them in the abdomen, or denied them food, water, rest in an attempt to make them miscarry the girls they were carrying,” he said. “Even the women who were carrying boys told of their guilt over past sex-selection abortions, and the feeling of being unable to ‘save’ their daughters.”
PreNDA would be a timely law for the United States, said Mosher, giving that abortion tourists reportedly already arrive from countries with similar laws against sex selective abortions, including most European countries.
Speaking against the bill was Miriam W. Yeung, Executive Director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, who said PreNDA would only hinder abortion access and urged the panel to keep the procedure as available as possible. Siding with the United Nations and other pro-abortion international groups, Yeung, whose infant was handled by a caretaker in plain sight behind her, said that restricting abortion would only mean “exposing women to the risk of death or serious injury.”
For a moment, the disagreement became quite pointed, as Rep. Steve King (R-IA) praised the heartwarming sight of Yeung’s children and confronted her on her abortion advocacy.
“You testify that you did well in science, and I accept that …. when did those little girls lives begin?” King asked, noting that the Yeung had introduced her testimony as coming from a mother. “Could you actually take their life the minute before they were born? Aren’t we playing guessing games with innocent human life?”
Yeung answered, “Respectfully, I am a very good mother,” and began to reiterate her position against the bill before she was interrupted by King, who asked, “I just ask you, have you contemplated the instant that your child’s life began?”
YEUNG: I think that’s a question of a very personal nature.
KING: You’re here though to testify as an expert witness and as a mother … but I shouldn’t ask you personal questions? Isn’t it personal to those little unborn babies?
YEUNG: I am here to testify against racial discrimination and against gender discrimination. I will not submit myself to personal questions of that nature or insinuations that I am not a perfectly fine mother.
KING: Then I would say you are disqualified here as a witness.
While much of the hearing focused on the epidemic of son preference in some minority American communities, other expert witnesses emphasized that the racial issue addressed by PreNDA is rooted in American history itself.
Edwin Black, an award-winning journalist and 20th-century historian, described the inherent racism of early 20th-century eugenicism, from which the family planning industry in America arose.
“Planned Parenthood at that time was not rooted in eugenics, it was eugenics,” said Black, who came as a witness neither for nor against PreNDA. “It was open eugenics.”
Black explained that early American eugenics pioneers, such as Sanger, were inherently racists with an explicit intent of eradicating unwanted bloodlines. Although some early American eugenicists even advocated executing unwanted persons by gas chamber, according to Black, Sanger saw birth control as a more humane way of ending the progeny of what she called “human weeds.”
“[Sanger] believed in saving humanity … and saving it by removing two-thirds of it,” said Black. This targeting of certain populations for extinction through birth control, he said, is recognized by international standards as a form of genocide.