Anti-Choice Groups Oppose Anti-Terrorism Legislation

One of the most troubling aspects of the events that led to Scott Roeder’s assassination of Dr. George Tiller at Dr. Tiller’s Lutheran church was the possibility that the federal government could have stopped Roeder, but failed to do so. In the years leading up to the murder, Roeder repeatedly violated the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, which forbids various kinds of violence and property damage enacted by anti-choice extremists in an attempt to physically force women not to have abortions.  Unfortunately, the Bush administration didn’t bother to enforce the law much, allowing terrorists like Roeder to gradually escalate the harassment until it spilled over into the act of violence that took Dr. Tiller’s life.  Since then, the Obama administration has stepped up enforcement of FACE, and now the supposedly “pro-life” anti-choice movement is crying foul and demanding the right to physically abuse women seeking abortion in addition to the verbal harassment they currently subject them to. 

Various right-wing publications have whined about the Department of Justice defending clinic workers and patients against threats of violence and physical abuse at the hands of anti-choice extremists. The two arguments for why anti-choicers should be allowed to abuse women in an attempt to stop them from exercising a constitutionally protected right to abortion boil down to “because we said so” and “wah,” though there is a side dose of pretending like threatening someone’s life is freedom of speech (a right that you only apparently get if you shore up your misogynist bona fides).  For instance, Jack Minor at the Greeley Gazette whines that pro-choicers held anti-choice extremists responsible for aiding and inspiring Scott Roeder:

Immediately following Tiller’s death, Operation Rescue and other pro-life groups came out in public condemnation of Roeder’s actions. Many abortion rights groups rejected the apology insisting that anyone who believed in the sanctity of life and opposed abortion was responsible for Tiller’s murder.

In truth, there never was an “apology.”  Minor believes we should let them off the hook because they call themselves “pro-life”, which is akin to someone shoving a steak in her mouth and demanding you take her for her word that she’s a vegetarian. If you step back and look at the facts at hand, there’s nothing “pro-life” about Minor or various other anti-choice publications.  Even these publications admit that the people prosecuted were using their bodies to try to force women not to enter their doctor’s offices.  While Lifesite News is presenting only the defense’s arguments in their coverage of the prosecution of a Kentucky man, you still walk away with a sense that perhaps the tussle between him, a patient, and an escort may not have been a matter of him standing peacefully while the women assaulted him, as he would have you believe.

The “wah” defense is also in evidence.  Nearly every publication I’ve linked here referenced either the illegal abortion provider Dr. Kermit Gosnell (who is being prosecuted and was rejected by the National Abortion Federation) or the case of an anti-choice protester who was shot for reasons that had nothing to do with abortion politics.  The argument seems to be:

“These horrible things have happened, we’re going to pretend they happened to us, and so we should be able to threaten doctors and physically abuse patients to our heart’s content.” 

Unfortunately for the anti-choice movement, it doesn’t work that way.   Stomping your feet and playing the victim doesn’t mean that you get special dispensation to break the law.

The FACE Act was signed into law by Bill Clinton in response to the rising tide of right wing terrorism during his administration, especially since so much of it was aimed at abortion clinic employees and patients.  Despite anti-choicers pretending that there’s no relationship between rising levels of harassment and overt terrorist acts, the ugly fact of the matter is that clinics that are targeted for harassment campaigns are far more likely to be targeted for terrorism.  In fact, some of the assassinations and assassination attempts were the direct result of clinic harassment, as the shooters were part of the ugly mobs that gather around abortion clinics to abuse women seeking abortion care.  Dr. David Gunn was shot by a so-called protester in 1993, and in the same year, Dr. Tiller was shot in both arms by a woman who jumped out of the mob with the intent to murder him.  Since then, anti-choicers who escalate from harassment to terrorism have grown savvier, putting a little more physical distance between themselves and the anti-choicers who haven’t escalated past harassment, but the connections between harassment campaigns and violence aren’t some fantasy dreamed up by pro-choicers.

It’s more than a little alarming to see the anti-choice movement mindlessly defend minor violations of the FACT Act, even though by their own reporting, the accusations are pretty cut-and-dry in terms of anti-choicers veering towards violence against patients and clinic workers: threatening to murder, blocking doors, and getting into altercations with women entering clinics who don’t want to listen to your misogynist, Bible-thumping blather.  Defending minor acts of abuse and violence sends a signal, especially to the unhinged (who are well-represented in the ranks of people whose obsession with controlling women rules their lives), that they are supported and encouraged in their desires to be violent.  People who escalate to shooting doctors and bombing clinics often spend months and even years testing the waters—vandalizing clinics, making death threats, flinging themselves at patients and employees, stalking clinic workers and threatening them at home—and if they’re nabbed early in their evolution, perhaps acts of violence can be stopped.  If anti-choicers cared one whit about “life”, they would support the DOJ’s attempts to stop murders before they happen.

Instead, you get the strong impression from many anti-choice publications that they believe that the government should only get involved after it’s too late. 

The good news is there’s not much they can do at this point to stop the DOJ from doing their job and enforcing the FACE Act. You can write a million articles where you refuse to offer a single detail of the DOJ’s case but you quote the defense extensively, but that doesn’t mean the DOJ won’t present the evidence when it actually comes up in court.

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  • forced-birth-rape

    ~ It is because pro-lifers are christian terrorist!

    Who do they terrorize? Answer, pregnant women, pregnant little girls, raped pregnant women, and raped pregnant little girls.

    They do not give a shit about lives, they are nothing but sadomasochistic Christian perverts who get their christian jollies by terrorizing the female race, even the raped little girl female race.

    Going to the nearest reproductive health care clinic and terrorizing raped little pregnant girls is Christian pro-lifer sport.


    These are the same people who adore Erik Prince a Christian warlord, and George Bush a pro-lifer Christian war criminal.

    Pro-lifers are pro-penis rape, even of children, (they are child rapist).

  • lauraj400

    Catholic.Do you think he is a rapist??

  • forced-birth-rape

     ~ The Supreme Court Six out of Nine are christian catholic. The Supreme Court declined to review the case of a recent Texas high school student who was kicked off her school’s cheerleading squad after she refused to chant the name of a basketball player who had allegedly raped her.

    Sixteen year old girl, under age rape victim, “catholics” do not give a tiny shit, nothing new there.


    Every one knows the tea party is christian pro-forced-birther, even of raped little girls. Just another catholic pissed that your child-raping-ilk cannot rape kids and go uncriticize for it.

    I am sick of rape, I am sick of child rape, I am sick of wife beating, there for I am sick of christian pro-lifers. ~

  • crowepps

    That is why the Church teaches that a Catholic politician cannot vote for legislation that enables abortion, yet Senator Biden, in “learn[ing] a lot,” has done just that.


    In order to be “REAL Catholic, you have to want to ban all abortions 100% no matter what.  Anybody who doesn’t agree with “isn’t really Catholic”.

  • lauraj400

    As far as rape goes according to the church ,if I am raped,I can have a D and C within the first 72 hours.

  • lauraj400

    As far as rape goes according to the church ,if I am raped,I can have a D and C within the first 72 hours.

  • forced-birth-rape
    Catholic Church excommunicates mother of 9-year-old rape victim – but not accused rapist




    The catholic church loves for nine-year-old-little-girls to get pregnant by way of rape, and pro-child rape people still claim these child rapist.

  • lauraj400

    does,Ever hear of Catholics for Choice?

  • lauraj400

    does,Ever hear of Catholics for Choice?

  • crowepps

    No doctor would do a D&C abortion on a woman merely because she had been raped.  Catholic hospitals not only refuse to stock or provide Plan B contraceptives that could prevent a rape victim from BECOMING pregnant, they will fire any ER doctor who exercises his free speech rights in support of his conscience by telling the victim that she can obtain Plan B somewhere else.

  • crowepps

    Nobody in the heirarchy of official positions in the Catholic Church cares what the laity think.  The laity is supposed to OBEY.

  • beenthere72

    At the lifenews link:


    James Pouillon was peacefully protesting outside a Michigan high school to teach students about the reality of abortion when he was gunned down by Harlan Drake, a pro-choice person who didn’t like his graphic sign and shot and killed him. The FACE law never entered the equation.


    Um, besides that the shooting had nothing to do with Harlan’s opinion on abortion, and he went on to murder and attempt to murder other people that have nothing to do with abortion,  the man is doing life in prison.   Why should the FACE law even be considered in the equation?    Their statement seems to imply that he got off scott-free.  

  • crowepps

    There is no evidence whatsoever that Harlan is pro-choice.  In addition, it would be more accurate to say that Harlan didn’t like the graphic sign DISPLAYED AT A SCHOOL.  These guys are so desperate for a few martyrs that it wouldn’t surprise me at this point if they started shooting each other just to get a few.

  • crowepps

    “He still attends mass and takes communion”


    Apparently he’s ignoring the archbishop who told him not to do so in 2008.


    “I certainly presume his good will and integrity,” said the archbishop, “and I presume that his integrity will lead him to refrain from presenting himself for Communion if he supports a false ‘right’ to abortion.”


  • arectaris

    Has the DOJ won a single case yet?

  • lauraj400



  • lauraj400

    He went around,imaginning people were doing things to his family.He refused to take medication or get help.

  • beenthere72

    Per Wiki:



    the year the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances act was put on the books[5] The Clinton administration prosecuted 17 defendants for violations of the F.A.C.E. act in 1997 alone and prosecuted an average of about 10 defendants per year since the law was enacted[11]. The Bush administration, however, only prosecuted about two defendants per year


    And since I know you don’t like wiki links:



  • crowepps

    The same is true of James Pouillon according to his son.

    It will be impossible for some to believe, but my dad really didn’t care about aborton.

    He did this to stalk, harass, terrorize, scream at, threaten, frighten, and verbally abuse women. He had a pathologic hatred of women: his mom, my mom, everyone.

    After my mom finally left him and he lost his favorite punching bag the violence and abuse that was always contained within our 4 walls was unleased on the people of Owosso.

    My dad used the pro-life movement and 1st Amendments foundations to defend him, support him, and enable him. He fooled them all.

    He was at the high shool because my niece was there, and female family members were always his favorite targets.

    Again, my dad didn’t care about abortion. He wanted to hurt people, upset people. He enjoyed making people suffer.

    His goal was to be shot on a sidewalk. His goal was to make someone so angry, to make them feel so terrorized, to make them feel the only way they could make him stop was to kill him.

    His pro-life stance was the most perfect crime I personally know of. He hid behind the 1st Amendment and was allowed to stalk, terrorise, harass, be obsene, ect. These things are crimes. Offending people isn’t a crime, and having different political views isn’t a crime, but he committed several crimes over the last 20 years and got away with it.

    Yes I really am his oldest son. Owosso is now rid of a mad man.”

    It seems like a healthy proportion of the unemployed people wandering around on sidewalks harassing strangers have some pretty serious mental health issues.  Which is WHY people need to be protected from them.

  • elburto

    Good luck with that one! Do you honestly think it’s as easy as turning up at a hospital or clinic and saying “Hi, I’d like a d&c immediately please!”

    What planet do you live on Laura? Firstly, your insurance provider would probably laugh in your face. Second, it’s not a procedure that doctors take lightly, it carries risks, and is often denied to women who need it for medical reasons until they’ve tried everything else first. Third, tell me what kind of world you live in where non-emergent procedures, elective ones at that, can be carried out with such haste?

    Sweetheart, if they won’t even give raped women Plan B or ulipristal (they delay ovulation. They are not abortifacients) then what makes you think you can demand, and be given, a d&c immediately? Oh and now I’m pretty much convinced you’re a guy pretending to be a woman, because no woman would take a d&c over two pills (especially when pain and side effects are taken into account. I was in agony for two weeks after mine), especially not a woman who’d just suffered sexual trauma in the immediate intervening period. Rape survivors, oddly enough, aren’t usually willing to submit to unconsciousness and further vaginal trauma and pain in the hours after their rape, when they’re feeling physically and psychologically vulnerable. I can’t imagine many would be thrilled with the pelvic and vaginal pain and discomfort, and extended bleeding for weeks following the procedure either. Neither do many even have the werewithal to get to a hospital.