Three individuals who survived abortions appeared on national TV Monday to remind Americans of the value of every human life.
Melissa Ohden, the founder of the Abortion Survivors Network, Josiah Presley and Claire Culwell shared their abortion survival stories as Congress debates whether to require basic medical care for babies who are born alive after botched abortions. Several states also are considering bills to legalize abortion up to birth.
“This is a human rights issue,” Ohden told Fox & Friends on Monday. “Without the right to life, there is no other right that comes.”
She survived a saline abortion when her mother was seven months pregnant with her. Later, Ohden, who was adopted, learned that her young mother had been forced into the abortion, and still deeply regrets not doing more to try to save her life.
Presley also survived an abortion and is missing an arm — likely a result of the procedure. Asked about legislation that would allow abortions up to birth, Presley responded with questions of his own.
“If abortion is legal in the first trimester and the second trimester, then the next step is, why not the third trimester? Why not right after they’re born?” he asked.
Countering the myth that pro-lifers do not care about born children, Presley said his parents adopted him and nine of his siblings because of their faith.
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“What has caused them to adopt us is the gospel,” he told Fox. “The fact that they’ve been changed by God to love others and His work in their life then causes them to love those around them and then gives them the pro-life conviction to then want to take in these children and make us their own just as God has made them His children, they make us their children.”
Culwell also spoke strongly about both born and unborn babies whose lives are threatened by abortion. She said her very young mother went through an abortion when she was five-months pregnant and initially thought the abortion was successful. Later, however, Culwell said doctors discovered that her mother had been pregnant with twins, and only one had been aborted. Culwell survived.
“It’s shocking to me that people no longer in our country care about what is true and right,” she said.
Earlier this month, pro-abortion Democrats in the U.S. House and Senate blocked bills to protect babies like Culwell, Presley and Ohden from infanticide. The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act requires medical workers to provide basic medical care for babies who survive failed abortions – the same degree of care that would be offered to any other child born prematurely at the same gestational age.
The U.S. is one of only seven countries in the world that allows elective abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The Abortion Survivors Network has been in contact with more than 250 abortion survivors, though it estimates the number of babies born alive after botched abortions is in the thousands.
“We know that a baby is what is inside a mother’s womb based on medical technology and science,” Culwell said. “We just hope that because people can see our faces and see that we are people. We are human. We do grow up to be someone someday, that people will realize that those women do not speak for women like me. That’s why I would ask those people, ‘Where were my rights as a woman? What were my rights in the womb?”