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Reproductive RIghts in America

Anti-Abortion Protesters Sued For Harassing Schoolchildren In DC

In Washington, D.C., anti-abortion protesters opposed to Planned Parenthood have been harassing children and staff of an elementary school because the school is near a soon-to-be built Planned Parenthood facility. But now the school is fighting back with a lawsuit.

Two Rivers Public Charter School accuses the activists of blocking carpool lanes and even showing children graphic images of aborted fetuses. Those images so disturbed one child that he would only come back to school if a counselor agreed to meet him before he returned to campus.

In the lawsuit, Two Rivers accuses the protesters–one of whom has a criminal record–of engaging in “extreme and outrageous conduct” and even terrorizing students–some as young as 3–with images of mangled fetuses and warning them that a “murder facility” is being built next door to their school.

The protester with a criminal record, Robert Weiler Jr, has been convicted of plotting to bomb a clinic.

Jessica Wodatch, the executive director of the school, wrote a letter to parents in which she stated:

“We are a diverse community with different viewpoints on the issue. Our students are caught up in a controversy that is not about them — our goal is to allow them safe passage to school.”

D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine said he will not hesitate to prosecute anyone who violates laws which prevent such harassment of children, adding:

“Protecting children is one of our highest priorities at the office of the attorney general, and we are very concerned about the allegations set forth in the complaint. We are committed to ensuring that students, teachers and parents are not harassed or otherwise intimidated by aggressive and unnecessarily inflammatory protests that go beyond the protections afforded by the First Amendment.”

For their part, protester Jonathan Darnel said he and his compatriots are not to blame:

“We blame the messenger instead of the message. They should be filing a lawsuit against Planned Parenthood for moving in there and building this place next to their school.”

Wonder how he’d feel if someone stood outside his place of worship and held signs calling him a domestic terrorist. But I’m sure he’d be deeply offended. Some asshats cannot see beyond their own perverted sanctimony.

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Reproductive RIghts in America

Newspaper Tries To Defend Cartoon Linking #BlackLivesMatter To Abortion, Planned Parenthood

A Montana newspaper is drawing heavy criticism for an editorial cartoon it published attempting to link the Black Lives Matter movement with Planned Parenthood and abortion.

The Great Falls Tribune, in a cartoon drawn by Gary McCoy–who just so happens to be a staunch conservative–depicts Planned Parenthood Federation President Cecile Richards sitting at her desk, smiling as she says:

“Here at Planned Parenthood, Black Lives Matter! They make up a good part of my car payment.”

Also seen in the cartoon is a newspaper with two headlines:

“78% P.P. Clinics in Minority Neighborhoods” and “Black Babies Aborted.”

Not only tasteless, but also inaccurate in the way one can only truly be when manipulating statistics without any context or actual fact.

Response from readers was swift and negative, with many calling it racist and over the line when it comes to criticizing Planned Parenthood. The criticism became so overwhelmingly against the cartoon that the editorial staff–all of whom are white men–published a letter from the editorial board in which they stated:

“Quite obviously, the cartoonist is suggesting that Planned Parenthood is a racist organization, or at least acts in a racist way, by positioning itself to provide most of its abortions to people of color. This was confirmed by the cartoonist who replied to a Tribune inquiry: ‘Those who are OK with disproportionately killing black babies, while claiming ‘Black Lives Matter,’ apparently choose to appease their guilty conscience by instead crying ‘racist’ at the tellers of truth.’”

Tellers of truth? Gimme a freaking break! And just because someone asserts that something is racist does not mean that you are immunized from such a charge by simply saying the racism lies with the person who opposes you. This is a coward’s defense. Apparently the editors of the Tribune are unable to actually craft a real reason for their objectionable actions.

The editorial goes on to say:

“The point of the cartoon was to accuse Planned Parenthood of racism. Obviously, that is a point about which reasonable people can disagree; there could be reasons other than racism why 78 percent Planned Parenthood centers are located in minority neighborhoods, assuming that fact is even true (We couldn’t affirm or discredit it. According to Planned Parenthood, ’73 percent of Planned Parenthood health centers are located in rural or medically under-served areas.’ And one could surmise that most businesses or community health organizations will be placed where the need for their services is greatest).’”

In recent months, the far right has come out in strong opposition to Planned Parenthood, but to say they do so because they care so much for the lives of unborn minority children is not only disingenuous, it is also a flat out lie.

The far right’s solution to the problem of racism is just as it has always been: Don’t talk about it and maybe it will go away.

This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org.

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Reproductive RIghts in America

Man Behind Planned Parenthood Videos Attempts To Explain Ties To Anti-Choice Extremists

David Daleiden and his group, the Center for Medical Progress, have been in the news a lot in recent weeks due to the release of propaganda-laced, heavily edited videos which purport to show Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of fetal tissue to interested buyers.

Tuesday morning, Daleiden was questioned about his group’s ties to violent anti-choice groups during an appearance on CNN’s morning show.

CNN host Alisyn Camerota directly asked Daleiden:

“Critics of your organization say that you’re not journalists as you purport to be on your website, but rather you’re violent extremists. They say that you are operating under the guise of investigative reporting, but really you’re trying to shut down all Planned Parenthoods and women’s access to things like birth control and other services that they provide. Do you have any ties to Operation Rescue?”

To which Daleiden replied:

“I’m not a violent person and I never have been and I never will be. Troy Newman is one of the board members of the Center for Medical Progress.”

And who is Troy Newman? He’s the president of Operation Rescue, which, over the years, has threatened family planning clinics with violence, harassed women who show up for appointments, and championed people who shoot and kill doctors who perform legal abortion services.

But Daleiden attempted to pretend that Operation Rescue doesn’t have a tie to extremists:

“You know, I don’t think that’s true at all. You would have to talk to Troy specifically about, you know, the full history of Operation Rescue and some of those details. But I don’t think that’s a fair characterization at all.”

Camerota also noted that biotech companies have confirmed that Planned Parenthood never sold fetal tissue and that the group was only reimbursed for the cost of storage and processing, which is allowed by federal law.

Daleiden’s response to that query was to tell Camerota it was “really cute.”

Which doesn’t exactly answer the question, now does it?

Near the end of the interview, Daleiden promised that his group has more lies they plan to disseminate via video:

“You’re going to see evidence in it of Planned Parenthood is actually willing to sell fully intact fetuses to buyers of aborted fetal tissue. It’s prima facie evidence of born alive infant cases.”

But when you consider the company David Daleiden and his group keep, it quickly becomes clear that what they say is not credible in the least. If they want to investigate something, they should start by looking in the mirror.

This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org.