Monday, November 15, 2010

Mildred Jefferson

From National Review's The Week:
When Mildred Jefferson graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1951 -- the first black woman to do so -- she took the Hippocratic Oath. Jefferson believed in it, and believed it prohibited the taking of life, so two decades later, when the AMA declared that physicians could ethically perform abortions, she became one of the founders of the National Right to Life Committee. She remained active in NRLC and other pro-life groups until her death on October 15, 2010.
A surgeon, she was renowned for her energy, her stirring oratory, and her tireless dedication to the cause. Perhaps her most concise explanation of why she felt so strongly came in a 2003 article:
"I am not willing to stand aside and allow this concept of expendable human lives to turn this great land of ours into just another exclusive reservation where only the perfect, the privileged and the planned have a right to live."
When she testified before Congress in 1981 about a pro-life bill sponsored by Jesse Helms and Henry Hyde, Jefferson was no less blunt:
"With the obstetrician and mother becoming the worst enemy of the child and the pediatrician becoming the assassin for the family, the state must be enabled to protect the life of the child, born and unborn."
RIP ...

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