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Late-Term Abortionist "Saved" Them, Clients Said

February 2, 2010

(Dr. George Tiller, left)

Excerpt from the 11-page "Savior Vs. Savior" by Devin Friedman in the current GQ

(Editor's Note- Before I read this, my sympathies were with Scott Roeder, although I disapproved of his actions. I am against abortion but I believe the remedy is to confine sex to long-term loving relationships. This article reveals that many of Tiller's late-term clients were "fetal indication" patients, women whose babies were malformed and would require lifetime care. If society demands that these fetuses be protected, certainly society must also provide for them after birth.)  

"Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday were what they called clinic days. These were first-trimester abortions, about fifty a week, no complications. If these had been Tiller's only patients, Scott Roeder would never have heard of him. George Tiller would still have run the only abortion clinic in Wichita, but he wouldn't have been identified and publicized as the most terrible face of what the movement called "the abortion industry."

It was the clinic's other patients who made George Tiller who he was: conspicuously pregnant women who on this very Sunday were readying themselves for the trip to Wichita from Michigan or Arkansas or England or South America, traveling here because there were only three clinics in the United States that openly provided abortions for women in their third trimester. Of all these clinicians, George Tiller was widely acknowledged as the most skilled. Warren Hearn in Colorado and LeRoy Carhart in Nebraska may have been fine doctors, but people said they were both a little wonky as humans. George Tiller did around 300 of these abortions every year and marketed himself aggressively, and he had a reputation for a kind of saintly bedside manner, for deep patience and the ability to make women feel listened to.

...Dr. Tiller said he had to work slowly and deliberately, for more than three decades, to refine the techniques and protocols in late-term care. There were different types of cases. There were women whose health was at risk if the pregnancies were to be carried out; they are called maternal-indication patients. And there were women who'd discovered that the fetus was so compromised, malformed, that it could not survive outside the womb without extraordinary medical intervention; these were called fetal-indication patients. For women who were at risk themselves, Kansas law dictated that in order to have an abortion past twenty-one weeks, a major bodily function had to be at risk. Dr. Tiller had been instrumental in Kansas in fighting to make sure a woman's mental health was legally considered a major bodily function. For example, if a physician declared that a woman suffered acutely from depression--that the birth would profoundly debilitate her--she could be cleared for an abortion.8

On Monday morning, the late-term patients arrived at the clinic. They were scared; some of them were inconsolable. They were shown to a room where they watched a video. Dr. Tiller came on-screen and explained what would be happening to them over the next three or four days. The videos had been translated into Mandarin and French and German. Early on,9 Dr. Tiller did almost all the procedures, but now he focused almost exclusively on the fetal-indication patients. They were special. Dr. Tiller led them, with Cathy, in a group-therapy session that he'd modeled after Alcoholics Anonymous. Everyone was required to sit in but not to talk if they didn't want to. When did you find out something was wrong with your baby? Were you angry? Did you find out you were pregnant only after you'd started chemo?

Tuesday was the most difficult. The women would leave their hotel rooms knowing that today they were going to kill their fetuses. At the clinic, they would lie on an exam table, Dr. Tiller would inject the fetus with digoxin, and in two to four hours its heart would stop beating. The women felt like monsters. Dr. Tiller told them it wasn't their fault. There was a protocol for talking to them about what they had done. You've saved your baby from a short life of pain. You have made a terribly difficult decision for the sake of this child. He hugged them. A device was inserted to begin opening the cervix. And then they would go back to their hotels and wait. At some point over the next three or four days, they would miscarry. When they went into labor, they'd go back to the clinic. Supplies were there to take footprints of the fetuses. Provisions were made for the parents to take photographs with their fetuses, if that's what they desired. A chaplain was on retainer, and he would come baptize the fetuses and name them if it was requested. Some of the bodies were flown back with the mothers in small caskets and buried in cemeteries. Others were taken to the crematorium.

The fetal-indication patients thought only about their babies. The other women, those who were in such emotional anguish that they thought they would kill themselves if their babies were born--these women wanted nothing to do with the fetuses. These two groups were kept apart. Their states of mind were toxic to each other. It's not hard to see how the separate filaments of morality--honoring the fetus as a human life for some women, honoring the belief of others that there was no life there--were thin and easily tangled. In the end, the ethos was that the fetus was what the mother imagined it to be. The women dreamed their babies into or out of existence, and Dr. Tiller and his staff responded accordingly.

Over time, the entire anti-abortion movement coalesced in opposition to him. In 1986, the clinic was bombed. And then, in 1991, Operation Rescue organized the so-called Summer of Mercy. Ten thousand people descended on Wichita for six weeks, chaining themselves to his gate and weeping in the streets. Twenty-seven hundred people were arrested. Two years later, a woman from Oregon traveled to Wichita and shot Dr. Tiller in both arms. In 2002, a charismatic, telegenic new leader for Operation Rescue named Troy Newman moved himself and his organization to Wichita to finish what they'd started and has lived there ever since, overseeing the strategy from the office he set up for symbolic reasons in a former abortion clinic. They've taken high-resolution pictures of everyone who worked at the clinic. They've followed them to their houses, plastered their neighborhoods with signs and postcards calling them murderers. One night, only a few weeks before the incident at Reformation, someone cut power to the security cameras, then to the outside lights, then drilled holes in the clinic's roof and stopped up the drain spouts just before a rainstorm.

Anyone associated with the clinic has been targeted. Residents from Wesley Medical Center looking to get training and earn extra money used to assist with the procedures, but they'd been pressured to stop. The late-term patients used to stay at the La Quinta Inn, but the hotel was targeted, so now the patients are spread among several hotels, their whereabouts kept secret. Off-duty police officers who used to provide security at the clinic declined to do it any longer. The company that hauled the garbage quit. Suppliers ceased doing business with the clinic. Certain taxi companies won't drop off at that address.


George tiller gave no sign that he was ever unsure about the act he was performing. If there was any doubt, it had never been exhibited. And for anyone who felt doubt on his staff, he handed down an intention to live with: Think about the woman. Because they saved people here. That's what George Tiller was saying. They didn't kill people; they saved them. All you had to do was to look at the walls. Framed letters from patients testifying to having been saved. That's how they described what happened to them. Hearing that was addictive. Everyone admitted that--felt a little guilty about getting off on it, but not too. Cathy and Joan used to wonder what they'd do when they retired and didn't get to feel that thing anymore. Even Roeder had heard about the letters, everyone in the network had; it blew their minds and filled their hearts with disappointment. The letters weren't relegated to a single wall. There was room after room of them, thanking and thanking, overwhelming you the first time you walked into the clinic. Answering the tacit question: No, we save people here.

Dr. Tiller's files, the ones that Phill Kline was after--the names and cases of the upwards of 10,000 women for whom George Tiller provided abortions--have been sealed in boxes and stored 650 feet belowground in an old salt mine in Hutchinson, Kansas, where they keep the masters of The Wizard of Oz, Gone with the Wind, and Star Wars. There are no more abortion clinics in Wichita, or for 200 miles around.


Scruples - the game of moral dillemas

Comments for "Late-Term Abortionist "Saved" Them, Clients Said"

Brian said (February 4, 2010):

The reality of Scotts action are that Children are alive today because the murderer is dead and gone. There was a release in the SPIRIT that day of LIFE. Many I have talked to sensed it and did not know this thing had happened. I was one of them.If this so called attorney general wants real justice, stop the holocaust. Be a real MAN and not some pathetic weasel who grovels at the feet of these vile beasts who pretend to be Human Beings. Work for that which is Right. Woe unto those who call evil good and GOOD EVIL. What shall be their end? Oh future neighbors of Tiller I presume.

Tony Blizzard said (February 3, 2010):

The writer of that pro-Tiller article is calling a sow's ear a silk purse. Murder is murder, even with the very best motivation. Justified murder is in the single case of having to chose your life or his/hers. There are rare instances wherein a mother will die if the baby lives. In sane days, the law allowed abortion in this case only, no other exceptions, and the law was correct.
Mental anguish, my ass. Spoiled, selfish brats is more like it. Tiller was making a very good living catering to the selfishness of uncaring-for-anyone-but-themselves women, and he knew it. "Modern" women. Remade, new world order women. Products of "education" and other brainwashing. Refusing responsibility for their past actions, the modern western standard for our "little princesses." His artificial "feel good" surroundings to sooth their little ids is the same lying propaganda crap that schools are loaded with today. May those too-selfish-to-be-bothered-to-be-mothers, every one, rot in hell for eternity.

All the anti abortion tactics Friedman tries to make look underhanded are necessities for life saving because of satanic statutes made in latter day America by criminal "lawmakers" and backed by a totally corrupt "supreme" court. Friedman never mentions that everything is stacked against anyone wanting to end abortion murder. In an earlier, more just, day, abortionists would simply have been run out of town, maybe tarred and feathered, maybe even hanged. And no one would have ever been prosecuted.

In the U.S. we have one national holiday for a man. That man is Michael King, Jr. aka MLK. King was a plagiarizer whose most famous words were someone else's. He was a communist sympathizer if not an outright communist. Parts of the U.S. were once plastered with photographs of King in front row attendance at a communist training school. He was also a tom cat who preferred multiple women of various races at the same time. He never marched but showed up for the photo ops in a limousine when the marchers neared their next objective. One of many well documented "marches," chronicles his bunch picking a farmer's land to squat for their nightly sex orgy of northern "liberals" and southern blacks. The farmer was black and told them loudly and often that he wanted them to get off his property and tried to drive them off. He was found the next morning, barely alive with his tongue cut out. One of King's "nonviolent marches."

King was/is a disgrace to humanity. I say let's ditch that holiday and make one for Scott Roeder, a national hero of our own age who delivered justice regardless of consequences, rather than more injustice for personal gain, which is today's norm.

Kamran (Roeder's roommate) said (February 2, 2010):

[A letter to GQ posted on their site]

I am Kamran, Scott Roeder's roommate at the time he shot the Dr. of death Tiller. I find some of the readers comments made as stupid as the person who made it "Devin Friedman's article is well-written and should give pause to anyone who considers Palm Quist, Roeder, and their ilk to be "just a bunch of nuts." These are dangerous people. They will kill and destroy to support their agenda. Well done, Mr. Friedman." Although I agree that Devin Friedman’s article is well written with a few inaccuracies this ignorant sole and all like him who lump all people in a fellowship into one homogeneous lump, fail to understand that not all who knew Scott were in total agreement with all of Scott's views or modus operandi. Furthermore Scott, myself and others who attended our fellowship believe in a United States were the constitution and bill of rights are embraced, so that secular idiots like this man can post their ignorant comments on the internet. People who attended our meetings all believe in the patriotic right to descent, which I now exercise to rebuke those who lump us all into a fringe group and call us "nuts". I personally migrated to the United States like all hard working immigrants who have made this a great country, and with much hard work have received both my B.A. and MBA working multiple jobs, and have been a responsible tax paying citizen. By any standard this does not qualify me and others in our group as dangerous nuts, out to achieve our goals at any cost, just because Scott chose this particular mode of resistance. Again I embrace the right of decent, and this includes the Scott's choice to fight his own battle. This does not however mean that I approve of Scott's method or vigilante justice. Let us not forget that the constitutional founders who started our Republic also embraced the right to descent, and some even agreed to armed duels to defend their honor, not to mention their bloody revolution against a genocidal tyrant like King George, another megalomaniac like unto Dr. Tiller. Furthermore those who are calling Scott a nut, please tell me apart from his method of resistance in Tiller's case, which one of his other positions do you disagree with. Scott believes that the central bankers are looting America (watch Alex Jones Fall of the republic on You Tube), he believes in helping the poor and defending the defenseless, he believes in loving God and loving neighbor, he believes that God’s earth is being ruined, and that Christ is coming to restore all creation to it's pristine condition. I know that what I am writing here will go over the head of brainwashed American global citizens of today and their secular/Marxist upbringing and education, but as for me and my house we will serve the Lord (Yahweh), and remember that God hates those who shed innocent blood, let’s face it all of us adults have sinned and are guilty to different degrees, however the unborn are innocent human beings who must be defended in the womb.

Bill Borst said (February 2, 2010):

First of all, I am unconvinced that Tiller performed late term abortions, only on "defective" children. Most victims of partial birth abortion had no defects whatsoever---except being conceived by parents who did not want them.

As far as I know abortionists will kill any unborn child who shows up at his door...with money. I seriously doubt "Tiller the Killer" was an exception. I find that a lame excuse.

How do we know that this HQ article is not just some more pro-abortion agitprop?

I don't think you did anyone a service by publishing this tripe.

This man had been notorious and defiant of the protests against his killing profession. I resent anyone tying to make a martyr out of him. I call "clinic days," ---"killing days."

I guess you are aware of the crematorium he had constructed many years ago because the local hospital would not accept the fetal bodies any more?

And for your editor to tacitly agree with his justifications is unconscionable. Parents want to kill their diseased or "defective" children and it is society's fault because there aren't enough tax funds to pay for their care?

What about all those people with strokes, broken necks etc? Should they be euthanized unless society takes care of them? And by society, do you mean the government?

You watch---euthanasia will replace aportion as the battlefront in the culture war.

Children are always the responsibility of the parents. If they can't take care of them, it falls with private charities to ease their burden. The operative word here is "charity," the goodness and unforced love in someone's else's heart. That's what makes us human.

Even if there were no charity available, that is no excuse to sanction or at least turn your head at this vicious crime Tiller performed.

The Nazis used the same excuse to rid their word of "useless eaters." Have we come that far?

Bill Borst from The Gospel Truth

Don said (February 2, 2010):

Dear Dr. Makow I always regarded Dr. Tiller as a brave honest man who helped women in need. The problem I see was the trial when potential jurors were interviewed behind closed doors on their views of abortion and the judge held out the possibility of allowing the jury to make a involuntary manslaughter verdict. Scott Roeder's testimony reflects state of mind and the judge not allowing the jury to consider this will make him a martyr much like John Brown was in "Bleeding Kansas" before the Civil War when slavery was the issue. He was hung but yet his image is painted in a larger than life mural in the state capital dome of Kansas which I have seen. It could well be the judge made such errors as I see it to be over turned on appeal on such a political issue. He will be sentenced in March and the prosecutor Nola Foulston wants the hard 50 for him. The judges decision will tell much.

Let me tell you about Nola. I listen to my police scanner several years ago when divorce judge Beasley was arrested for DUI as he told the police to go to Hell because he was so powerful and it required the Chief of Police here to go to the scene. I watched this judge in court before when I was down there on an unrelated matter and he gave the shaft to every man who stood before him. You're damn right he has power and yes Nola did protect him and he still is the judge.

Gregory said (February 2, 2010):

an you please post this in response to Steve's statements about abortion?

Here is my text:

In the posting below, Steve demonstrated an attempt to change the meaning of the scripture to fit our modern day zionist meanings to the gospel that they created and live by.

In the original text of Exodus 21:22, it deals with an accidental killing of the human life in the womb, not a premeditated, intentional act of killing that life in the womb. This is what Steve didn't apply to his own interpretation of what God says in Exodus chapter 21:

12 "Anyone who strikes a man and kills him shall surely be put to death. 13 However, if he does not do it intentionally, but God lets it happen, he is to flee to a place I will designate. 14 But if a man schemes and kills another man deliberately, take him away from my altar and put him to death.

Then in a few verses down in that same chapter we see the verse that Steve takes totally out of context, and puts his own spin on the meaning to it. It says:

22 "If men who are fighting hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman's husband demands and the court allows. 23 But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.

So, in summary, the passages of the scripture that Steve wishes to refer to say that an intentional act meant to kill another human life is to incur the punishment of death for those who are responsible for the death. There are no exceptions to God's law regarding killing innocent human life intentionally.

So "Abortion" qualifies as being "murder" in God's eyes and those who have participated in the act incur the punishment of eternal death for their souls, since they refuse to obey God's mandate of death on this earth for themselves.

Hans said (February 2, 2010):

Henry, in the response of Steve [below], he makes the point that live begins with breathing, while it is noble that he looks at the Bible at first authority on matters of live and death, he is not correct himself.

Gen 25:21-22: Children and Sons in womb.
Children are living beings, no biological matter.

God also hated Esau, even before he was born, a clear indication that an individual character is meant, no anonymous embryo.

In Luke 1.41,44, it says, a baby leapt for joy in mothers womb!!!!

Abortion is murder of a living being.

That brings up the value of live in general in the so-called Civilization.
I estimate that in most cases an abortion is carried out for pure economical reasons, a child is unfortunately seen as an investment that does not pay! Maybe the Child is in the way of the career-plans of the parents, or the result of sex without love for the sake of sex, and was conceived outside a marriage. All of which are sins in itself, punishable in the eyes of God.

Also, pro-livers in the US or elsewhere seem to have double-standards, while they fight against abortion, many of them seem to support unjust wars, where based on a pack of lies millions of innocents are being killed, many years after they were born.

Steve said (February 2, 2010):

Being a Christian and writing this will get me lots of hate, but like anything, we must go back to the Word of God for certain definitions.

When Adam received breath-life, he became a living soul, or in Hebrew, nephish kai. When man takes his last breath, he is no longer a living soul.

When does a fetus become a "person", and when is it "murder".

I am not saying that abortion is always right, always healthy, always used correctly. If my daughter were raped I would want her to terminate the pregnancy as soon as possible.

Exodus 21:22 states that causing a miscarriage resulted in a fine, not death as would be required for murdering someone.

Strictly speaking, a fetus becomes a living soul when it takes its first breath. Personally, I feel abortion is wrong after a certain number of weeks.

Christians go on and on about murder, but by the definition from the Bible breath-life is the determining factor.

Abortion is traumatic, without a doubt. But calling it murder is not scripturally accurate.

Henry Makow received his Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Toronto in 1982. He welcomes your comments at