Virtual Abortion Comes to Montana

I currently live overseas, where our cable provider gets U.S. TV programs with some delay. Right now, they’re advertising the new “Candid Camera,” a takeoff on the old show in which people are observed in incongruous situations, their reactions recorded by means of a hidden camera. “Laugh, relax a bit,” is the advertising hook.

One of the strange situations depicted is “Your Online Dental Exam.” Patients are led to believe that they are taking part in a new way of getting your teeth checked: a “virtual” visit to the dentist.

The computer voice instructs a teenage girl: “carefully inject upper right gum.” “I’m supposed to inject myself?” she asks incredulously.

We all have a laugh when Peter Funt announces “smile, you’re on Candid Camera!”

 But I didn’t know Montana governor Steve Bullock might be gunning to replace Funt.

On April 27, Bullock vetoed a bill that would have banned abortion by DVC in Montana.   For those unfamiliar with the procedure, a pregnant woman is “examined” by television by a doctor who can be several hundred miles away.  He has no physical contact with her, never touches her. Once his “examination” is complete, he pushes a button that opens a drawer at the woman’s location. She removes the package of pills in it, goes home, takes the drugs and, within a few days, undergoes a self-induced miscarriage. For safety’s sake, she is counseled to return for medical follow up within two weeks, just to make sure that she might not be going into toxic shock because of an incomplete abortion. Sepsis, after all, can be so unpleasant.

This “telemedicine” is essentially a “do-it-yourself abortion.” Unlike Peter Funt’s “do-it-yourself online dental exam,” however, these guys are deadly serious … deadly for the unborn child, potentially deadly for mother.

Yet Bullock applied his veto pen the day before the Montana Legislature adjourned sine die, ensuring his decision could not be overturned and Internet abortions will go on in Montana.

“[W]e should all be working together to expand access to health-care services in Montana” wrote Bullock in his veto message. (The quote is from a newspaper; don’t try to find the message on the Governor’s website. Those who support the Governor’s veto; but we don’t have to be too public about being pro-abortion).

Bullock characterizes the procedure as “a safe, effective, and efficient means of delivering health care.”  One might question whether giving a woman mifepristone and prostaglandins to abort herself is “health care,” much less good medicine.

But Planned Parenthood has embraced it. As more and more physicians refuse to sully their hands with prenatal bloodletting, Planned Parenthood has found webcam abortions an “effective and efficient means” to make money on abortions in large, rural states where it just doesn’t have enough abortionists—even carpetbagger abortionists riding circuit, plying their trade—to rake in the money. 19 states have already banned the procedure, and Iowa has been a major point of controversy where Planned Parenthood has pushed “do-it-yourself” abortion.

The paradox is, of course, that while Steve Bullock embraces a form of “health care” that ensures Planned Parenthood doesn’t even have to touch a patient, much less get blood on its hands, he wants to force you—contrary to your conscience rights—to get blood on yours. The Montana Legislature also sought to protect conscience rights by requiring health insurers who cover abortions in their medical plans also to offer the same plan without abortion coverage. Bullock also vetoed that bill this week.

(The reasons for that veto are also clear. It’s not about Bullock’s claim that duplicating health plans that leave something out—in this case, abortion—are going to “ultimately lead to increased costs for consumers”  It is about the ongoing effort of the abortion establishment to treat abortion unapologetically as perfectly normal and ordinary, about which the public has no qualms. It is about eviscerating the Hyde Amendment—something that has been a covert operation under Obamacare—in order to create a public perception and policy that abortion is “just another health service.” And this is advanced by those who call the opponents of forcing people to subsidize abortion “extremists”).

See, abortion is a “private choice” of a woman whom the public—including those who dissent—must endorse, facilitate, and subsidize.

For right now, Montana women will be the prey of abortionists who are willing to make money on them while leaving them essentially to their own devices when it comes actually to aborting. “Carefully inject yourself,” one might also hear. But don’t smile; you’re really on Planned Parenthood camera, which thinks this farce is good medicine.

John M. Grondelski


John M. Grondelski (Ph.D., Fordham) is former associate dean of the School of Theology, Seton Hall University, South Orange, NJ. All views expressed herein are exclusively his own.

  • Tim Danaher

    Interesting how the liberals treat abortion as another health option, but are now making noise of banning homosexual conversion therapy as a health care option. It is like modern day Pontius Pilates are asking, “What is health care?”

  • lifeknight

    This shows that our intentions will always (eventually) fall to the lowest level. We have exceeded how low we can go with the internet and its usage with this new assault. As soon as the doors were opened with the supposedly guarded use of contraceptives we have traveled swiftly down the slippery slope.

  • Christi H

    “Ultimately lead to increased cost for consumers.”
    Ummm… Should we force people to buy caviar with their daily bread because not doing so would “increase cost for consumers.” Key word, “consumers:” in other words, the people who actually WANT it? What happened to the free market? I realize there are far worse things to be angry about, but this just gets under my skin. It reminds me just how much they don’t mind throwing other American principles under the bus in the name of destroying children’s lives, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. But… I feel like there’s someone pushing things from behind the scenes who doesn’t care enough about the fate of children, or women, to actually care about the abortion debate. I see our freedoms of speech, conscience, religion, to do business, to choose for ourselves, to be taxed only lawfully, and yes to have life, liberty and happiness, being chipped away by this *one* so-called medical “right” for women. I see it, and am afraid our principles are being weakened for a purpose.

    • disqus_qkOcYNTXOW

      Also in the name of ‘saving the environment’ from too many children!

  • Beth

    This makes me re-think the “It’s just a movie” response to someone’s fear of what they have seen in the dystopia-themed movies. ALL of it seems possible–not only possible, but probable. Lord have mercy!

  • Greco-Roman Catholic

    This is unbelievable. What makes it even worse & more sad is the fact that this Montana governor is a self-declared “Roman Catholic”.

    • St JD George

      Of the same cult/wing as Pelosi, Biden, Kerry, Kennedy Cuomo … Catholics-for-Choice …
      Between that and support for un-sacramental marriages of the SS crowd I wonder how they reconcile their beliefs. Like Cuomo … well, I would never kill a baby as a matter of conscious, but if you want to who am I to stop you. Such moral fortitude.

      • Greco-Roman Catholic

        Unfortunately, I should not have been so surprised.
        As for Cuomo, we should apply his own logic to himself & respond: “Well, I would never *personally* kill you as a matter of private conscience, but if you somebody else wants to kill you (Mr. Cuomo the politician) who am I to stop him/her?”

        • Martha


  • hombre111

    Pretty grim. I will never really understand this mindset.

  • Ruth Rocker

    The only way that abortion is health care is if it’s either a disease or a cancer. Diseases are treated and cancers are surgically/chemically treated. Other than that, it’s murder. Period (to quote the idiot-in-chief).

    • MillRun

      so you are just a lesser idiot. gotcha.

      • GG

        Only if you voted for the idiot.

      • Ruth Rocker

        As opposed to you, who are apparently a greater one? Exactly what part of my comment did you not like? Your post/reply is anything except clear.

        • MillRun

          *is* apparently a greater one. duh.

  • Tom Saltsman

    According to the Eternal Word espoused in I Timothy 2:15, salvation through motherhood is TWOFOLD! The first part is: 1) giving birth. The second part is much less popular: 2) “continuing in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety (Douay-Rheims).”

    I logically assume that those who expect atheists and non-believers in general to practice this heroic Christian virtue of technical motherhood are emphasizing ONLY the first part about giving birth–even if that one-sided act brings another two more souls, both the mother and her child, into eternal hell for decades of their combined lack of faith, charity, and holiness with sobriety–if not for their many unforgiven mortal sins.

    After all, eternal damnation is almost as common as death; it happens every day. As Our Lord said more than once in the Gospels, “it would have been better for Judas had he never been born,” and “narrow is the way to life and few there be that find it,” and “many shall seek to enter in and not be able.”

    Of those who are born into this world of temptation and woe, few “continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.” Many New Testament scriptures–too numerous to mention here–make the same warning over and over: be holy or be damned forever.

    Even Sacred Tradition teaches that Purgatory is only for those who attempted holiness and failed in minor issues regarding Christ’s command to “watch and pray.” Purgatory is not for those who are careless and carefree about mortal sin, the Sacraments, and God’s Word in general. The Church has NEVER taught such idolatrous garbage.

    Those who believe in the gospel and love souls don’t want any soul to go to hell–and it’s hardly fair that God would send an aborted zygote or fetus to hell. So the primary concern here should be with the sinful mother’s soul who is contemplating abortion or her child who grows up to end in hell.

    All this brings me to one question: “Why should unbelievers be required to practice a half-hearted heroic virtue that could bring two more souls into eternal hellfire while modern Catholic women don’t even have to crack open a Bible to read I Corinthians 11?”

    Backed by centuries of Sacred Tradition, this passage plainly states that women who refuse to cover their heads while praying are dishonoring their own good sense, all legitimate authority, and holy scripture combined! That’s hardly ‘faith and charity with holiness and sobriety.”

    In other words, count me among those who believe that it would be better not to be born than to go to refuse to “watch and pray,” thereby ending up in eternal hell. I realize I stand alone in this view but that doesn’t change Holy Scripture and its many warnings.

    For those who think half-hearted Catholics go to heaven–much less the careless and carefree–I strongly advise watching the movie, “The Rite.” Based on true accounts of modern Catholic exorcisms, this terrifying 2011 film makes it plain how easy it is for Satan to trap careless souls forever–even Catholics.

    • Martha

      I’m overtired and may well be misunderstanding you, Tom; are you saying that abortions are preferred if the mother is an atheist, as in this day and age the child is more likely to go to hell if given life?

      I apologize if I’m misreading you, as I said I’m definitely compromised at the moment (what with all my little olive branches- they can be quite exhausting); I agree with much of what you say, but am a bit confused by the rest.

  • Gregg Trude

    I want to thank everyone who has joined in on this discussion and thank the author for writing this article. These two bill stalked about, the webcam bill (HB 587) and the insurance bill (SB 349) were both my bills and carried by two Montana Legislators for me. It is amazing to me the excuse that the Governor used to veto these bills, to be able to prescribe RU 486 without a clinical visit is absolutely looney. This goes against all FDA guidelines for these drugs. Governor Bullock claims to be a Catholic and yet has an agenda against life. The insurance bill just required that the State Exchange provide a policy that does not have elected abortion coverage since all the policies on the Exchange have elected abortion coverage. This just follows the Federal mandate for abortion in Obamacare. Now I have to raise money to take the State to Federal Court. We did get a good bill passed this Legislature though, thank God, it requires enhanced sentencing for anyone who assaults a pregnant women. Domestic violence against pregnant women is a huge problem in Montana and the US.

    • slainte

      Thank you for your work supporting the health and well being of mothers and babies.

      Planned Parenthood (“PP”) should be compelled to conform to the same safety standards imposed on hospitals and surgical clinics.

      PP should not be permitted to endanger women’s lives or exempt itself from liability and/or damages when its unorthodox and reckless practices injure women.

      Conversely, women who suffer injury at PP facilities should sue PP for damages with greater frequency.

  • Martha

    Horrifying. Sick. A sign of the times. And WHAT times! Insanity.

  • Allen Troupe

    We have been working to put an end to this in Iowa. Right now we are waiting for the Iowa Supreme Court to do the right thing & let the Medical Board ban go into effect.
    This is a dangerous proceedure that Planned Parent supports because it makes them huge amounts of money for little expense while harming both mother & child.

  • slainte

    Why not interview the owners of Planned Parenthood franchises to determine why they advocate such a reckless approach toward women’s healthcare?

    Other business owners are accountable to the public for sound business practices, why not the owners of Planned Parenthood?

    Seems only fair to require full disclosure of the owners’ names and accountability for unorthodox and remote medical procedures which are likely to jeopardize the health of innocent women.