Anti-Abortion Activists Hold First “Leave The Abortion Industry Day”
Anti-abortion activists have many approaches to stopping abortion. One is to spread lies about the science around reproductive health. Another is to pressure women to feel guilty for terminating pregnancies, regardless of their reason. Another is to restrict abortion access through the courts. And yet another is to target the employees and property of abortion clinics, which includes harassment and violence towards abortion providers and damage to their buildings.
“Leave The Abortion Industry Day” on April 8 is one such effort towards that goal — and thankfully, an effort not involving violence. It’s a project of Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood clinic director turned anti-abortion activist; “abortion industry” is a term used by anti-abortion folks to describe people who work in the women’s health field in regards to abortion.
Johnson claims that five people who work in “the abortion industry” contacted her ministry, And Then There Were None, about how to leave their jobs. And, sure, if you work in women’s reproductive health and you don’t want to work in women’s reproductive health, by all means, leave. But Johnson’s all about spreading the anti-abortion message with the goal of eliminating all abortions for everyone: the tag line for And Then There Were None is “no abortion clinic workers, no abortion clinics, no abortions.”
All of this “abortion industry” logic is extremely misguided, of course. Women have always obtained abortions, regardless of whether they are legal. If you think no legal abortion means no abortion, then you’re terribly naive. The legalization of abortion in America only assured that far fewer women would be maimed or killed from illegal, back-alley abortions performed by unqualified “doctors” with no knowledge of obstetrics or gynecology. Or women would terminate their pregnancies themselves.
Anti-abortion activists like Johnson may pat themselves on the back for encouraging trained health care providers to not work for abortion clinics, yet they seem to not consider at all the damage done by leaving pregnancy termination to questionably-sanitized coat hangers. What an odd legacy to pursue.
[Image of gynecologist’s office via Shuttershock]