Abortion unexpectedly plunged back into the news in recent weeks with the murder of Dr. George Tiller, who performed late-term abortions in Wichita, Kansas.
Everyone but the most far right extremists has condemned the killing and much of the media has focused on how this act of domestic terrorism is truly deplorable. But clinic violence, awful as it is, occurs rarely compared to the legislative assaults against reproductive rights. So in response, Maureen Tkacik (formerly Moe of Jezebel and Gawker) has written a piece for Lemondrop about the things we never mention about when we discuss about abortion—but probably should.
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A Kansas-based anti-abortion group called Operation Rescue has dreamed up a new way to stop abortions: they’re buying clinics. Their headquarters in Wichita, Kansas are in a former abortion clinic, but because they’re finding the place is a little small, they’re thinking about offering to buy the clinic that was recently shut down after Dr. George Tiller was murdered. This is beyond tacky, since Dr. Tiller was shot at church, and the main suspect is crazed lunatic Scott Roeder, who had been known to post on Operation Rescue’s blog. Plus, Operation Rescue had been targeting this clinic for years now, staging massive, sometimes violent, protests going as far back as 1991.
Operation Rescue’s prez Troy Newman likes the symobolism of taking over the space and “establishing [it] as a center for life, one that nurtures and cares for babies, rather than taking their lives.” We say, there has to be another building available in Wichita that would work. [AP] Keep reading »
The Wichita clinic formerly run by Dr. George Tiller, who was murdered by anti-choice crusader Scott Roeder on May 31, has closed permanently. As a result, the closest abortion provider for Tiller’s patients will be a three hour drive both ways to Overland Park. It is unclear if that clinic, the Center For Women’s Health, can provide late-term third-trimester abortions like Tiller’s did.
Good job, crazies. [Wichita Eagle] Keep reading »
A 51-year-old anti-abortion activist is in custody in Wichita, KS, after he allegedly shot and killed Dr. George Tiller, 67. Tiller, who had provided abortions to women for over 30 years, was gunned down in the foyer of his church while he passed out the church bulletin. [NY Times]
Some anti-choice extremists think all doctors who perform any abortions should be killed. But Dr. Tiller, in particular, was a lightening rod for controversy because he was one of only three doctors in the country who performed abortions on women in the third trimester, also referred to as “partial birth abortions.” But why are abortions in the second or third trimesters so controversial? Here are five things you’re probably asking yourself right now. Keep reading »
Dr. George Tiller, who, among other things, administered abortions at his Wichita, Kansas women’s clinic, was shot and killed today in front of his church. He was one of the few doctors who stilled performed late-term abortions, and his clinic was the target of many anti-choice protests over the years, including a previous attempt on his life in 1993. He was 67-years-old. A suspect is in custody. [CNN]
Some anti-choices groups have condemned the killing, while others have taken the opportunity to continue to condemn him, saying, “George Tiller was a mass-murderer. We grieve that he did not have time to properly prepare his soul to face God.” Keep reading »
We think it’s pretty dope that Sonia Sotomayor, Obama’s pick for Supreme Court justice, is (a) a lady and (b) could the first person of Hispanic descent to don Supreme Court robes. But many pro-choice advocates are sounding alarm bells today because they have a sneaking suspicion that, once on the bench, Sotomayor may not uphold Roe v. Wade, something they think should be a “no duh” for a judge appointed by a pro-choice president. What’s got them worried, after the jump… [NY Times]
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After using clandestine tactics to investigate Planned Parenthood, Lila Rose, 20, has become known as an anti-abortion crusader. She staged her own sting at the clinics to prove her claim that the organization routinely covers up sexual abuse. She says Planned Parenthood counselors don’t report statutory rapes, as the law requires, and often encourage the girls to lie about their age or the identity of their partner. “Planned Parenthood is looking at these young girls as a plumbing problem: ‘We’ll get you that abortion and send you on your way,’” Rose told Reuters in an interview. “And that’s disrespecting two human lives. It’s destroying her pre-born child and sending her back to an abuser.” She has posted her secretly recorded videos on the website for her non-profit group, LiveAction.org, which she started at age 15. Keep reading »
Daily Beast columnist Meghan McCain is like an unpredictable lover. Sometimes her columns hit the spot. Others leave me utterly unfulfilled. When she ably took down Laura Ingraham for making fun of her weight and stood up for gay rights, I cheered. This week’s column seemed especially promising, given the subject matter. “The GOP Doesn’t Understand Sex” targeted the GOP’s support of abstinence-only education and argued that conservatives have a serious problem with sex. Sounds compelling, right? McCain thinks so, tweeting, it’s “possibly my most revealing so far. I really hope everyone likes it.”
Actually, I thought it was meh. While I agreed with much of what she wrote, I didn’t find any of it particularly illuminating. Yes, the Republican party is super stodgy about sex, especially when it comes to teens and women. But I wanted and expected an insider’s look at why this is the case, not a regurgitation of the obvious. Keep reading »
This week, Planned Parenthood’s mailing list included an email from Judy Blume. Here’s a snippet:
If you are the daughter whose mom had the guts to give you the answers to questions you couldn’t quite figure out how to ask… If you know a mother who is struggling to raise strong, independent, and confident children in the face of unbelievable odds… Say thanks. Say thanks this Mother’s Day with a gift that honors her courage by making a donation to Planned Parenthood in her name.
Turns out, that call for donations to Planned Parenthood has angered anti-choicers because, in addition to providing general health care for women, some Planned Parenthood clinics offer abortion procedures and administer the morning after pill. PP representative Cecile Richards says that since writing the letter, Blume has been inundated with nasty phone calls, emails, and letters. Keep reading »