The Conversation

Gosnell the Naturalist

The article isn't referring to Gosnell's penchant for keeping serial-killer trophies -- severed feet -- in specimen jars.

Rather, it's about the softer side of the serial butcher, the guy who loved his pet turtles and angel fish and fed them fresh clams.

Say what you will about abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, the man was something of a naturalist. After four weeks of testimony at the 72-year-old doctor’s murder trial, the witnesses’ one consistent description of the interior of Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Society clinic at 3801-05 Lancaster Ave. was lots of plants and animals. Photos of the four buildings that were combined into the West Philadelphia clinic show plants in almost every free space and countertop. There were one or more cats that had the run of the building and, dominating the waiting room, were huge glass tanks containing Gosnell’s collection of angel fish and turtles. ... Gosnell put the bag in the refrigerator but emerged with two clams. Wood said he walked to one of the aquariums, cracked open the clams on the spot and began dropping pieces of clam meat into the water for the hungry turtles.

The Inquirer has been making this an important story -- unlike most of the rest of the media, which just makes excuses -- so this could just be a case of them reporting everything about it, anything semi-interesting. It could also be source-greasing -- maybe throwing a "nice" story to Gosnell's lawyer in hopes of getting some information out of him.

Still, this doesn't sit right.


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