This Esquire article about Dr. Warren Hern is dated August 5, but I don’t think anyone posted it here, and it’s a must-read. He’s a complex man, in a complex position, but it’s almost impossible to come away from the article without an admiration for his work. Unless you’re a crazy person.
The patients can be upsetting too. They’re under terrible stress, of course, but sometimes they come in very angry. One had conjoined twins and would have died giving birth, but she exploded when he told her she couldn’t smoke in the office. And some treat him with contempt and disgust, usually the ones who have been directly involved in antiabortion activities. They hate all abortion except for their special case. One even said they should all be killed. Only fourteen, she came with her mother. What brings you here? he asked. I have to have an abortion. Why? I’m not old enough to have a baby. But you told the counselor we should all be killed? Yes, you should all be killed. Why? Because you do abortions. Me too? Yes, you should be killed too. Do you want me killed before or after I do your abortion? Before.
He told her to leave. Her mother was very upset. But he isn’t an abortion-dispensing machine. He’s a physician. He’s a person.