The Media Doesn’t Know There’s No Such Thing as a “Born-Alive Fetus”

National   |   Wesley J. Smith   |   Oct 23, 2013   |   3:59PM   |   Washington, DC

The AP is biased in its use of terminology, using particular terms when it has picked a “side” in political and cultural controversies. So are most of the rest of the media that take marching orders from the AP stylebook.

Sometimes bias in reporting leads to inaccurate science–as in the horrible story of the young woman caught shop lifting at a Victoria’s Secret store with a dead late term fetus or newborn baby in her bag.

Which he or she was–a fetus or a baby–depends on whether the mother miscarried or gave birth to a live infant. But to AP, it is a fetus no matter what the facts.

From the story:

An autopsy of a fetus found in a teenage girl’s shopping bag at a New York City lingerie store was inconclusive, and more tests will be needed to determine how the fetus died, the city medical examiner’s office says…

Preliminary reports from detectives suggest the fetus was born alive and possibly had been asphyxiated, but chief New York Police Department spokesman John McCarthy said that the case was still being investigated and that police were awaiting the medical examiners’ determination of the cause of death. The medical examiners also will determine whether it was a live birth.

A born-alive infant, is by definition, not a fetus. He or she is a baby. Or, if AP wants to use a medical term–like the term fetus–he or she was a neonate.



We saw the same inaccurate terminology used in some stories of the baby murdering late-term abortionist, Kermit Gosnell–as this NYT story that called murdered babies “viable fetuses.”

To the liberal media, it is important to dehumanize babies or fetuses made dead by the actions of their mothers–even when not involving abortion. Note: Wesley J. Smith, J.D., is a special consultant to the Center for Bioethics and Culture and a bioethics attorney who blogs at Human Exeptionalism.