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Reformed Chicks Blabbing

“Private Practice” abortion episode

I thought they did a very good job handling abortion on “Private Practice” last night. Usually on TV shows the pro-life position is written as a straw man that can easily be knocked down but the “Private Practice” writers looked at it from the aspect of a fertility doctor who puts a high value on life who has to deal with the fact that an abortion was going to take place in her practice for the first time even though she’s against it (she’s overruled by the doctor running the practice). She understands that life begins at conception because she sees it every time she fertilizes an egg. It’s reasonable for her to be against abortions because they devalue the life that she values so highly. At the end of the episode when she says that a baby died there today, you can understand her pain because you know that she works so hard to facilitate life, not destroy it.
And what made it even better was that they didn’t bring in the religious aspect at all, there are non-religious reasons for valuing life and I think this episode demonstrates that. She’s Catholic and was probably against it for religious reasons as well but that aspect wasn’t brought out that much in the episode (only one mention of God in passing).
If you missed it, you can watch it here. You don’t have to know too much about the show to watch the episode.

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posted December 4, 2008 at 8:04 pm

I watched that epsiode of Private Practice, (watch it every week!) and thought they handled it well. Both points of view, woman’s right to choose and the feelings on the other side were pertrayed well. Being pro-choice I too was pleased they left religion out of it.

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posted December 4, 2008 at 11:28 pm

I haven’t seen the episode and can’t get the clip to work … however I’d just offer, if it isn’t already obvious, that Natural Law is foundational. These sorts of remarks – “didn’t bring in the religious aspect at all … she’s Catholic … (only one mention of God in passing)” – may be said in the same breath without shame. Like, we could have written Esther!

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posted December 5, 2008 at 4:54 am

I was very impressed with how Private Practice handled the issue, also. I was especially impressed with the complexity of Dell’s reaction and the fact that Naomi, while not wanting him to go to “the other side,” recognized that he didn’t have the best reasons for being against abortion. The show pointed out that guilt isn’t a great reason. Naomi was a great example, I believe, for doctors with moral problems with abortion. While she shouldn’t have to perform one herself, she does acknowledge that it is a medical procedure.
Also, I just have to say that I loved when Addison told the guys, “everyone without a vagina, leave the room, now.” Very amusing.

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Michele McGinty

posted December 5, 2008 at 7:17 am

“I just have to say that I loved when Addison told the guys, “everyone without a vagina, leave the room, now.””
I thought it was condescending, men have a right to be a part of the discussion because they are part of the problem.
I know of many women who have been pressured to have their babies aborted by their boyfriends — as Dell demonstrated.

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posted December 5, 2008 at 7:32 pm

crystal m: And your point???
Shame, Moonshadow, over those statements you mentioned? That would be why?

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tony smith

posted October 10, 2009 at 1:28 am

It was a stupid episode. Fertility doctors fertilize eggs, use some of the embryos, toss others aside, put some in freezers, implant a dozen into a woman — knowing that most will die, and if more than one implants, they usually perform “selective reduction.” The pro-life chanting fertility doctor was riddled with hypocrisy.

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posted July 20, 2010 at 6:44 pm

Oh, come on. Selective reduction is not a common procedure and done usually only in the case of higher-order multiples, which are less common in IVF than they are with lower-tech procedures.

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Jane Barlow

posted May 13, 2011 at 7:00 pm

I am so surprised at the support for that program. I was heart broken. There is no excuse for blatently taking the live of an unborn child on TV or in real life. I have been a big fan of Private Practice until now, but found this very offensive.

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