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Primates and Congressional Investigations

The lead story for most of this past week has been about the four-year-old boy who fell into a gorilla enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo. The gorilla was reported to be dragging the boy around, so zoo authorities decided the only way to ensure the boy’s safety was to shoot the gorilla. This action created an intense outcry from animal rights groups and others who were clearly more concerned about the life of the gorilla than they were about the life of the child. For the record, a number of people suggested that the gorilla should have been tranquilized rather than killed. Experts have ruled out this possibility, as any attempt to sedate the gorilla would require shooting him with a dart and then waiting 10-15 minutes for the tranquilizer to take effect. The immediate response from the gorilla would have been rage, which would most likely cause the child’s death or a significant injury.

Unfortunately, putting animal rights ahead of human rights is becoming the norm in America today. We protect baby seals, eagle eggs, and snail darters. Yet, we intentionally kill millions of preborn human babies and defend this killing as “reproductive rights.” It is events such as the reaction to killing the gorilla to save the child that snaps us back into reality and shows us how much education we must still do to truly have a culture of life in the United States.

In other news this week, Congress’ Select Panel on Infant Lives sent an eight-page letter to the Department of Health and Human Services asking it to follow up on information the panel has uncovered during its investigation into the sale of baby body parts. The essence of the letter is contained in the following paragraph:

In particular, the Panel’s investigation has uncovered information indicating that StemExpress and Planned Parenthood Mar Monte (“PPMM”), Planned Parenthood Shasta Pacific (“PPSP”), and Family Planning Specialists Medical Group (“FPS”) (herein after “the abortion clinics”) committed systematic violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) privacy rule from about 2010 to 2015. These violations occurred when the abortion clinics disclosed patients’ individually identifiable health information to StemExpress to facilitate the TPB’s efforts to procure human fetal tissue for resale. This complaint is against each of these entities, and we request a swift and full investigation by the Office of Civil Rights in the Department of Health and Human Services.

Of course, the Department of Health and Human Services is part of the executive branch of our government. The executive branch reports to President Obama, and since Mr. Obama has been a steadfast supporter of Planned Parenthood, we are not optimistic that the DHHS will conduct an impartial investigation.

You can read the full letter here.