Private Right, Episode 2: Dr. Brown

Hosted By: Lisa Phu - November 16, 2022


From the late 1970s to the late ’80s, Dr. carolyn Brown was a gynecologist and obstetrician in Palmer. She delivered thousands of babies, which she was known and praised for. She also performed abortions, which she was known and praised for – and vilified for.

She remembers being told, “how bad it was, how evil it was that I was killing babies, and that God would get me for that and I would burn in hell and all the other stuff that people say to people.”

However, Brown herself has questions. As she reflects on her past as an abortion provider, she struggles with how to define the beginning of personhood. And she’s relieved she no longer has to decide when it’s OK to perform an abortion.

But despite this uncertainty, she continues to support a right to an abortion.

Private Right from the Alaska Beacon is a show about abortion in Alaska, a conservative state with a strong right to choose. Lisa Phu is the host. In this series, you’ll hear Alaskans talk about abortion, and its impact on the state and their lives.

Episode credits: Lisa Phu, writer, reporter and producer; Andrew Kitchenman, editor; and Dave Waldron, engineer. Music by Blue Dot Sessions.

Read more:

Alaska doctor, once called ‘baby killer,’ reflects on past as abortion provider, with questions

Transcript of this episode