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Now Eugene Robinson mocks Santorum’s mourning

Now Eugene Robinson mocks Santorum’s mourning

I posted the other day about Alan Colmes mocking — and then apologizing for mocking — the manner in which Rick Santorum and his family mourned their child who died shortly after birth.

Now Eugene Robinson of The Washington Post and MSNBC has done the same (via Commentary, h/t @CharlieSykes):

First it was Alan Colmes; now it is Eugene Robinson of the Washington Post, who went on MSNBC to mock Rick Santorum for how he and his wife Karen dealt with the death of their son Gabriel. (A severe prenatal development led to his very early delivery, and Gabriel died two hours after his birth.)

“He’s not a little weird, it’s that he’s really weird,” Robinson said of Santorum. “And some of his positions he’s taken are just so weird, um, that I think that some Republicans are gonna be off-put. Um, not everybody is going to, going to be down, for example, with the story of how he and his wife handled the, the, the stillborn ah, ah, child, ah, um, whose body they took home to, to kind of sleep with it, introduce to the rest of the family. It’s a very weird story.”

The Commentary post quoted the official page of the American Pregnancy Association (an association of health-care providers that treat pregnant women) about stillbirth:

With the loss of your baby, your family members will also grieve. Your baby is someone’s granddaughter, brother, cousin, nephew or sister. It is important for your family members to spend time with the baby….

Sounds like good advice, and a situation no one should have to be in.

Few have defended this line of attack on Santorum, but one left-wing blogger feels that Colmes (and presumably Robinson) was not tough enough on Santorum:

You go to his office as a Post reporter and he makes certain you focus on this incident in his life, and makes sure you know he uses the correct right-to-life shibboleth. Whatever this may have been at the time for Santorum and his family, by now it isn’t a tragedy for him — it’s a marketing bullet. He brandishes the kid as a medal he and his wife earned in the culture wars. He’s shameless.

My opinion? Colmes isn’t hard enough on him.

Update 1-6-2012:   Eugene Robinson clarifies criticism of Santorum


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Democrats are too deep in the bondage of death to feel remorse or shame; these reprobates will never understand the meaning of life.

FWIW, said Linked page on Still Birth speaks of “Giving the Baby a bath.” Which really (IMHO) isn’t entirely to far off of what the Santorums did. (Granted said page talks about “in the hospital” but that probably has more to do with the American obsession with Hospitals than anything else.)
So yeah, from my perspective they did things I really wouldn’t feel comfortable doing myself (I’m more of a “put it out and press on” griever), but not “strange” in any sense of the word. And apparently not to far out of the range of “commonly accepted.”

Snorkdoodle Whizbang | January 5, 2012 at 5:45 pm

It’s times like this when I seriously have to wonder if Leftists are even the same species as the rest of us. Vile does not begin to describe these ‘people’.

It’s funny how Dems/libs who rail against someone like Santorum telling them how to live their life have no problem telling him how to live his. Who exactly would liberals claim was harmed here?

The left-wing blogger seems to have recycled some leftover attacks unused in the war against Sarah Palin. How long before Andrew Sullivan investigates Karen Santorum’s uterus?

Abortion is a sacrament of the Left. Therefore, they are scared to death of the fetus. Giving them the benefit of the doubt, they frame their defense of abortion as a property rights issues. The female has complete control over the “fetal tissue” until it is born. It is her property. Do they realize that they are using the slave owner argument?

Leftism causes reasonable people to do and say things that are much worse than they are as people. Leftism rewards, encourages and enables human disrespect. It also requires a very large self-Esteem.

Eugene Robinson illustrates the leftist belief that they are morally and intellectually superior. If there is anything that they don’t understand or is not aligned with their beliefs, then that person or subject is “weird”, stupid or just wrong. The mind of the left is childlike.

I’m fine with what Colmes and Robinson said.

What you quoted didn’t recommend btw that the other children touch or see the corpse. What it said was that it was up to the parents, not recommended. If Santorum make judgments about people who have abortions or gay sex, I can make judgments that what he and his wife did (with respect to having their young children hold the corpse) is “weird to me”.

Doesn’t it warm your heart to discover that libs are really concerned about the credibility one of our candidates? They don’t want us to make any stupid mistakes like nominating someone who could take obama. They realize we are so dumb as not to understand how really weird Santorum is or how crazy Newt is or how dumb Perry is or how flaky Bachmann is, or as icing on the cake, how unfaithful Cain is, so they try to tell us repeatedly to make sure we get it. I guess it’s now Santorum’s time under the hatchet. Everyone else but Romney has spent time there. If the establishment succeeds in forcing his nomination on us, he, too, will get his chance. In spades with such a target rich environment.


All dead people require baths. A newborn baby would need it just like someone older. It is a necessary step toward burial.

    tsrblke in reply to BarbaraS. | January 5, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    That really wasn’t my point Barbara. There’s a whole host of things required to bury someone that I’m not really comfortable with doing myself, hence the need for funeral homes. But even that’s all beside the point. My point was that what Santorium did really didn’t fall that far outside of what this random (and assumedly impartial) advocacy group was talking about, so why are the libs panties in a bunch?

Henry Hawkins | January 5, 2012 at 6:39 pm

My wife is a retired nursing educator. She said that what the Santorums did is the basic recommendation of caregivers for families who’ve lost a child at or near birth. It’s the norm.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 5, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Everyone is entitled to an opinion & a reaction.

    Having read some of Jumbo3’s posts on Hotair I am not him .

    However a President of the USA MUST be prepared to wipe out hundreds if not thousands if not tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands & perhaps even millions of people who are a threat to the existence of the USA.

    Some of those will be innocents. If Santorum is such over the natural death of a 20 week old foetus -I say he does not have what it takes.

    In matters of life & death we are pretty much all just stumbling on. No one is the truth.

      Henry Hawkins in reply to BannedbytheGuardian. | January 6, 2012 at 9:32 am

      Are you suggesting that any candidate who grieves the death of a child is not fit to be C in C? Not a rhetorical question. I honestly do not get what you’re asserting here.

Baby LIVED two hours thus, NOT stillborn/stillbirth. Am I missing something?

This would not be an issue to anyone on the left unless it involved a Republican running for office.

Perhaps it is so unusual for libs not to see the death of a unborn child as a good thing they can’t comprehend why anyone would be greiving or see it as a loss?

You’re not missing anything, Canusee. This also is not about abortion (except for my dig that Santorum doesn’t believe in a right of privacy) or whether it was right for Santorum and his wife to do what they did. It’s about (in my mind) why it’s appropriate to have his other three children (then aged 5, 3 and 1) touch the corpse or whether that might be traumatic for them.

    Canusee in reply to jimbo3. | January 6, 2012 at 12:04 am

    I have experienced many deaths, from a young age. There has never been a time in these deaths where loved ones did not touch the corpse. There is nothing creepy or inappropriate about this. When one of my parents died while I was young people let us be, simply be. If a brother wanted to lie next to dead Daddy, no one stopped him. If I did not want to touch at all, no one told me to do so. Nothing inappropriate as far as I can see.

    SmokeVanThorn in reply to jimbo3. | January 6, 2012 at 1:17 pm

    No – it’s about your endorsing reprehensible conduct because it’s directed at somebody with whom you disagree.

This is no-one’s business but the Santorum family. It is another distraction thrown out there by the MSM to take away from the primary race. Perry is dumb, Newt is angry, Cain is an adulterer, bachmann is crazy etc.etc. Ignore their meme and move on with the business of choosing a nominee. This personal choice by the Santorums does not change any policy stance or belief that Rick Santorum has had, so it is not relevant.

Henry Hawkins | January 5, 2012 at 7:12 pm

From Ed @ Hot Air, quoting the American Pregnancy Association manual on grieving deceased newborns:

“After the tests are completed, you will usually have the choice to spend time alone with your baby. You can find comfort in looking at, touching, and talking to your baby. Most parents find it helpful to make memories of this precious time that will last a lifetime…
With the loss of your baby, your family members will also grieve. Your baby is someone’s granddaughter, brother, cousin, nephew or sister. It is important for your family members to spend time with the baby. This will help them come to terms with their loss. If you have other children, it is very important to be honest with them about what has happened by using simple and honest explanations. It is your decision whether you would like the children to see the baby. Ask for a Child Life Specialist at the hospital; these are trained professionals who can help you prepare your children for the heartbreaking news, and prepare them to see the baby if you wish.”

Santorum’s family did nothing out of the ordinary, and certainly nothing ‘creepy’. Colmes and Robinson have only impugned their journalistic integrity and underlined their willful ignorance on the subject.

[It is your decision whether you would like the children to see the baby.]Ask for a Child Life Specialist at the hospital; these are trained professionals who can help you prepare your children for the heartbreaking news,[ and prepare them to see the baby if you wish.]”

Look at the bracketed language. This is not a medical recommendation to have your other children see the corpse.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to jimbo3. | January 5, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    NONE of it is a medical recommendation. The child is deceased and past medical considerations. These are the basic recommendations for the grieving family, none of whom are under medical care or treatment. They are shared by both secular clinicians and spiritual chaplains attached to every hospital and available to grieving families upon request.

    Canusee in reply to jimbo3. | January 5, 2012 at 11:56 pm

    jimbo3, I do not agree with “professional” trained Child Life Specialists. It is unacceptable to put a child in the presence of a stranger and request they share emotions at a level reserved for a deep, establish, love-based relationship. It is a form of molestation and emotional manipulation. There is not a right or wrong way to grieve nor a programmed educated response. Mankind has proven, over and over, that FAMILY and parents’ presence is the most healing. Words of understanding is pulling the child up to the adult level not the reverse. Mothers, Fathers, and siblings are suffice. Grief Counseling is for much later. This was not an original idea of the Santorums.

    Ask for a Child Life Specialist at the hospital; these are trained professionals who can help you prepare your children for the heartbreaking news,[ and prepare them to see the baby if you wish.]”

      Henry Hawkins in reply to Canusee. | January 6, 2012 at 9:35 am

      Note the “if you wish”. Most people don’t have experience (thank God) dealing with the death of a newborn. The specialists are available to advise *if you wish*. Or not.

This morning, a Reuters article also went after Santorum about this, in what was pretty much an opposition research piece. The article said in part, “Santorum presents family values as the cornerstone of his political convictions. But here, too, his behavior might alienate as many voters as it attracts.” And then immediately followed with the story about the death of his child.

Whether one can imagine handling the situation in that way or not, a little perspective seems in order. In 1996, the Santorums only had three children, approximately 5, 3, and 1 years old. Children who had been told that a sibling was on the way and who had to be made aware of what had happened. Some people wake their dead. There was a time they used to do it at home. If someone from the Hollywood A-list had done this it would be heralded as “natural.” It has nothing to do with “family values” but that was never the point for the despicable, hypocritical left.

My first grandchild, Jeremy, was stillborn at 29 weeks. It isn’t something you just “get over”. I will be forever grateful for the time I spent with him and had there been other children at the time I have no doubt that they too would have spent time with their brother prior to his body being given to the funeral home. When my father passed away this past June we didn’t call Hospice to report his death until after the local family gathered to spend time with him. I don’t see anything weird about how we handled either situation.

The media must be desperate if this is the best they can find to trash Santorum with. He is not my candidate, mainly, because I don’t think he can win the nomination and if nominated could win the general but there is no sense in trying to destroy a good man with stuff like this. I don’t know what I would do if a death like that had happened to me. I cannot walk in his or his wife’s shoes for that reason and cannot pass judgment. This was a private affair and should have remained private. The media is allergic to privacy of republicans or other opponents of obama as we have seen in the past and are willing to say or use anything to destroy his opponents.

Donald Douglas | January 5, 2012 at 7:58 pm

jimbo3: You’re an idiot. It was a vicious attack on Santorum and his family, whose baby died and they mourned privately. You’re a sick puppy and your moral equivalency is disgusting.

I’ve been wondering how he was allowed to bring the deceased baby out of the hospital. I thought most states prohibit the transportation, handling, storage of human remains except by licensed funeral personnel and such.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to janitor. | January 5, 2012 at 10:04 pm

    Actually you might be surprised . It is most likely a local health by law .

    There was a famous rock singer whose friends stole the body from a parlour (what a great word ) & took it down to his favourite place in a Cali desert & tried to blow it up or something.

    THey could only be fined for a minor breach of a hygiene law iirc.

Donald, if you care to explain why my moral equivalency is disgusting rather than acting like an avid reader of the Huffington Post, then I’ll be happy to talk to you more.

My son just sent me this CNN article via email; media is apparently now out in force against Santorum. “Christian Sharia”. I kind of anticipated this one.

More things about Santorum: He likes W’s type of government and he thinks Kennedy was wrong about not trying to enforce Roman Catholic doctrine on the nation (you can do the research yourself, as well):

“In 2002, Santorum attended an Opus Dei event in Rome, during which he attacked President John F. Kennedy’s famous 1960 endorsement of church-state separation. Santorum said the Kennedy vow not to enforce Catholic doctrine through civil law has caused “much harm in America” and went on to describe President George W. Bush, a Methodist, as the nation’s first true Catholic president.

“From economic issues focusing on the poor and social justice, to issues of human life, George Bush is there,” Santorum told the National Catholic Reporter. He has every right to say, ‘I’m where you are if you’re a believing Catholic.’”

[…] William Jacobson responds, “Now Eugene Robinson mocks Santorum’s mourning.” […]

I had the sad experience of losing two high school classmates over two months–one white, one black.

After my white friend’s WASP funeral, one of our black friends in attendance was clearly upset about the funeral. “What’s your problem, people? Why aren’t you mourning him? Get on with it!”

My black friend’s traditional black American funeral had lots of loud preaching and singing and wailing and emoting hither and yon. Afterwards, this same kid said, “Now see? THIS is how you have a funeral!”

So, which “good-bye” was right? BOTH.

When my dad died of cancer, I didn’t want my daughter to see him lying dead in his bedroom. My Mexican brother-in-law and his sons, on the other hand, insisted on seeing him that way.

Who was right? BOTH.

    Taxpayer1234 in reply to Taxpayer1234. | January 5, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    Oops, hit the Submit button too fast…

    An ounce of common sense can tell these dweebs that mourning a loved one is as varied as the people in this country. This is another display of the left’s diverse, compassionate, multicultural tolerance.

When I was a little girl, my family lost three children due to some crazy genetic disorder the doctors did not discover until the last baby died. I would give anything today to say good bye to my brothers and sister. This subject is so personal I can’t even believe it is being used as a political football, and the latest stunt to bring down a candidate. Shame on them, what goes around always comes around,always.

It wasn’t a “FETUS”.
It was a baby.

Eugene is about a nutcase anymore…..come to think of it, most of the “journolist” crowd are off their rockers and America is noticing….I hear this sentiment more and more each day!
Hooray for the USA!