By Debra Sweet
Violence against abortion providers comes from a movement to enslave women. The women-hating fanatics of the anti-abortion movement have a tidy theocratic program: women, submit to your husbands. God decides when you give birth; no abortion, no birth control; no divorce. And they won’t stop until no one has the right to abortion.
Operation Rescue brought on the murder of Dr. Tiller through its relentless slander, harassment and threats to the doctor and his staff, calling him ‘Tiller the Killer’ and endangering thousands of women seeking abortion in the process. Courageous doctors who provide abortions have to endure terrible danger at the hands of a right-wing movement which has killed 9 abortion providers since 1993.
Now, Operation Rescue is acting to “close down” Dr. LeRoy Carhart who is a hero for continuing to provide women abortions when they need them, including later in their pregnancies. He’s been burned out of his house, harassed, investigated, and threatened with death. His employees are threatened. Are they planning to kill him? Yet he shows courage and compassion for the women depending on him.
More abortions are needed, not less
We make no apologies! Women need abortion for full and equal participation as emancipated human beings. There should be—more abortions. Each year, there are many women who want abortions but are unable to get them due to the tremendous legal, social and economic obstacles that have been put in their way: parental notification laws, mandatory waiting periods, anti-abortion fake clinics that disorient and delay women, shrinking numbers of abortion providers at all, insurance and state aid that won’t pay for abortion, and countless other cruel and humiliating restrictions.
Need for response
We take the threat to close down Dr. Carhart as a moral challenge. Everyone who cares about the humanity of women should appear publicly in his defense.
It is not OK for Dr. Carhart and other abortion doctors to stand alone. 50 million women have had abortions in the US since 1970. We have to talk about abortion – ABORTION – sharing our stories, and standing up publicly, including here today, with our bodies, when doctors are threatened.
Part of the reason we’re here today is that the women’s movement has largely conceded this fight, led by Democrats who want to find “common ground” with those against abortion. Now that “common ground” has become “killing ground,” they need to be stopped, not conciliated with, through mass public condemnation, and a growing movement to protect abortion providers.
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