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Pro-Choice Group Borrows Anti-Choice Tactics (Minus the Shaming and Intimidation)

Pro-Choice Group Borrows Anti-Choice Tactics (Minus the Shaming and Intimidation)

There was a protest at a women’s health clinic in Wichita, Kansas, this week. I know, I know. That’s about as surprising as if I had said “the sky is blue.” However, this protest was different. It was led by pro-choice activists.

According to the Kansas City Star, protesters from across the country, called the Abortion Rights Freedom Riders, converged on a crisis pregnancy center called – without a hint of irony – A Better Choice. They held signs that said “Fake Clinic” and “Stop Forced Motherhood” in front of the crisis pregnancy center, which happens to also share a parking lot with Operation Rescue, an anti-choice group known for their graphic protests of abortion clinics.

The leader of Operation Rescue, Troy Newman, didn’t see any similarities between his protests and the protests of the crisis pregnancy center. From the Kansas City Star:

Contacted at a conference in Seattle, Operation Rescue leader Troy Newman said the protesters can “stand out there in the rain” and rejected comparison of their protests and his.

“I don’t see anybody coming out of that place (A Better Choice) with a sad face,” he said. “Unlike an abortion clinic, everybody who’s going in and out of there are happy.”

Hmm… Citation needed, please. Even among women who weren’t thrilled to get get an abortion, a hefty majority – 80 percent – think they made the right choice.

Newman is partially right about one thing. While these protests may look similar to the ones by Operation Rescue, they are not the same. You see, protests in front of abortion providers are designed to intimidate and shame women into making a choice that isn’t right for them by using erroneous information. These protests, on the other hand, don’t seem to be doing that. This seems especially true since the center wasn’t even open on the day of their protest. Sure, they call those who work at the crisis pregnancy center liars, but given what we know about the information CPCs provide, that’s actually a pretty safe bet.

However different they may be in their objectives, there is no doubt that the CPC protest has taken a page out of the anti-choice playbook. Protests, at the core, are a demonstration of support for a person or position, right? It’s about getting attention and galvanizing support for a cause by showing less bold people that they are not alone. In that sense, these CPC protests and the typical Operation Rescue protests are cut from the same cloth.

Newman, however, doesn’t see it that way. He sees these protests as an act of desperation. Why these protests are an act of desperation and not others, I’m not sure. His evidence seems to be that there are many more CPCs across the country than abortion clinics. This isn’t surprising, however, since abortion providers have been specifically singled out for onerous regulations all over the country.

No one is doubting that anti-choice activists are well-organized and effective, but now pro-choice activists are fighting back. As long as they don’t start murdering people in cold blood, I say that it’s time to get loud.

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99 comments

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8:19AM PDT on Aug 20, 2013

FINALLY!! Good job, ladies.

5:56PM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

Wow, so many great comments - they were more enjoyable than the article. Agree with using Pro-Life tactics, only Pro-Choicers classed it up a bit by not lying, no shaming, bombing and killing.
Really liked Luis idea of involving insurance companies - for sure they won't put out for the unnecessary deaths. This could be the start of a possible trend, that can make a difference.
Don't have time for those hypocrites who are pro-life. There's nowhere in my version, undoctored, where it says God will turn his/her back on you if you abort a pregnancy...can find many places where it says lying isn't acceptable...strange my version must be different than the ones used by anti-life people. What version do they use??

I'm sticking with my favorite verse because it says it all...direct from Any version of the Bible:

Judge ye, Lest ye be judged.

We'll see who gets past those Pearly Gates...certainly NOT those liars, shamers, blasphemers...You'll enjoy meeting the Big Bad D...

5:12PM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

I don't know what "pro-lifers" are trying to achieve by protesting outside clinics other than intimidation and misery. Stupid thing is that a lot of pro-lifers have had abortions themselves, yet they want other women to be rotting in a prison cell, or languishing in guilt or misery while they're free to run their lives, plan their future families and embark on harrassment of other women! In the interest of protecting free-speech I don't like any law that could prevent this, but I wonder about what these people are and it's sad that they do what they do.

"I also LOVE to undermine them further and show them to be the true a$$holes really are by telling them the baby's father isn't white.
EVERY time these a$$holes STOP suggesting adoption when the baby is no longer white" lovely.

These pregnancy centers masquerading as help need to be regulated and it needs to be clear what they're about. Sure, once you get into one and start talking to them you'd clock on to what they are, but in the phone book etc there's no hint about what they are. All it does is waste time - which women wanting to abort don't really have.

1:40PM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

Republican's need to get out of our uterus's.

12:58PM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

One of the best ways to fight and help, that I used to participate, in is to be a "fake pregnant woman".
At a clinic that provides legitimate help to pregnant women and abortions, the "real" people go in the back or side doors while "fake" pregnant women "pass" through the gauntlet of protesters.
Then you distract them by being "unsure" of the "pregnancy". While they're helping you, the people who need real help are getting it because you have stopped the protesters from harassing them.
I also LOVE to undermine them further and show them to be the true a$$holes really are by telling them the baby's father isn't white.
EVERY time these a$$holes STOP suggesting adoption when the baby is no longer white!

8:54AM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

Maybe they should add to the choice options and hand out leaflets for adoption agencies with desperate parents who want a baby and have to adopt abroad and help three lots of people to make a choice that will make everyone happy.....

6:27AM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

All's fair in hate and war ... applies to both sides. Freedom, choice, you own it.

1:21AM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

ONE IN THREE Pregnancies, ends in Abortion or Miscarriage... Since "God" makes LOTS OF MIS-CARRIAGES, which are "Natural" Abortions, nothing else - "God" SEEMS NOT TO BE AGAINST ABORTION IN THE SLIGHTEST.
Legal Abortion DOES IN FACT, SAVE COUNTLESS LIVES OF WOMEN.
There are literally TENS OF THOUSANDS of Women Alive today, who would be DEAD pre-Roe-vs-Wade, from UNSAFE ABORTIONS - Abortions that they would have had ANYWAY, altho they KNEW they were both Illegal, and Unsafe.
The Pro-Roe-vs-Wade Campaign Symbol was a COATHANGER, symbolizing UNSAFE ABORTION.
So, yes, PRO-CHOICE HAS SAVED WOMEN'S LIVES, BY THE HUNDREDS AND THOUSANDS.
Making Abortion Illegal, has NEVER STOPPED ABORTION, in ANY country, no matter what the penalties were... Abortion is NECESSARY. As NECESSARY, as Giving Birth...
Abortion, Abortionists, and Women who bravely have Abortions, SHOULD BE HONORED...

1:02AM PDT on Aug 19, 2013

I HAD AN ABORTION. And I'm GLAD I DID.
I will keep saying this and saying this. Women who have had Abortions HAVE NOTHING TO BE ASHAMED OF.
I am NOT ASHAMED OF HAVING HAD SEX FOR REASONS OTHER THAN REPRODUCTION.
Why the aitch-ee-double-toothpicks NOT have Sex with NO CONSEQUENCES - since the Technology is available {and HAS been since the first "Cave-Woman" discovered certain HERBS would end an UNWANTED, INCONVENIENT Pregnancy... yes, Abortion IS THAT OLD...}.
Abortion, like Sex For Pleasure, like Being Gay, like Non-Reproductive Sex, is AS OLD AS HUMAN INTELLIGENCE - has for all practical purposes, ALWAYS EXISTED, and ALWAYS WILL EXIST - legal or not. There will ALWAYS be REASONS for Abortion.
I HAD AN ABORTION. MY GRANDMOTHER HAD AN ABORTION. BOTH WERE ILLEGAL AT THAT TIME. My Daughter, thank Goddess! had a SAFE AND LEGAL ABORTION, after Roe vs. Wade...

11:17PM PDT on Aug 18, 2013

choice all the way

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