News & Politics

Hillary Gaffes on Abortion, Says 'Unborn Person Doesn't Have Constitutional Rights'

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Last week, Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump managed to upset pretty much everyone with a poorly thought-out comment regarding abortion. Not to be outdone, Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton stuck her foot in her mouth on the same topic over the weekend. The Washington Times reports:

“The unborn person doesn’t have constitutional rights,” Mrs. Clinton said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “Now that doesn’t mean that we don’t do everything we possibly can in the vast majority of instances to, you know, help a mother who is carrying a child and wants to make sure that child will be healthy, to have appropriate medical support.”

The comment raised the ire of pro-abortion zealots who carefully police language to obfuscate the nature of abortion:

Describing the fetus as a “person” or “child” has long been anathema to the pro-choice movement, which argues the terms misleadingly imply a sense of humanity.

In addition, the specific term “person” is a legal concept that includes rights and statuses that the law protects, including protection of a person’s life under the laws against homicide. Pro-choice intellectuals have long said that even if an unborn child is a “life,” it is not yet a “person.”

Guidelines issued by the International Planned Parenthood Federation discourage pro-choice advocates from using terms such as “abort a child,” instead recommending “more accurate/appropriate” alternatives such as “end a pregnancy” or “have an abortion.”

“‘Abort a child’ is medically inaccurate, as the fetus is not yet a child,” the guide reads. “‘Terminate’ a pregnancy is commonly used, however some people prefer to avoid this as terminate may have negative connotations (e.g., ‘terminator or assassinate’) for some people.”

The guidebook also advises against the terms “baby,” “dead fetus,” “unborn baby” or “unborn child” when discussing what it is that’s being aborted. Instead, it recommends the terms “embryo,” “fetus” and “the pregnancy.”

“The alternatives are medically accurate terms, as the embryo or fetus is not a baby,” it explains.

It’s telling when you have to steer activists away from referring to people as people. Such coaching is necessary because our natural tendency is to acknowledge the humanity of the unborn. Certainly, no parent eagerly anticipating the birth of a child thinks of that unborn baby as inhuman or “not yet a ‘person.'” Abortionists must therefore will themselves into an evasion of reality.

Clinton’s problem is that she let her willful evasion lapse for a moment and defaulted to the instinctual—and reasoned—identification of the unborn as persons. That’s a big no-no among the baby-killing crowd.