U.S. Marshals Providing Security for Boulder Abortion Doctor

Boulder physician Warren Hern, who like Dr. George Tiller, performs late-term abortions, is now receiving federal protection from the U.S. Marshals. Here are some of his comments yesterday.

On why he calls his clinic "The Boulder Abortion Clinic":

Hern said the straightforward name of his clinic is a statement that abortion shouldn't be a "clandestine act." His name is posted next to the outside entrance.

On President Obama's remarks a few weeks ago at Notre Dame calling for a "common ground" in the debate on abortion: [More...]

"There is no common ground with fascists who want to kill you."

On the murder of Dr. George Tiller:

He said the killing was the result of 35 years of anti-abortion rhetoric and intimidation. "The only difference between these people and the Taliban is about 8,000 miles."

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    Nice that Dr. Hern is willing (5.00 / 8) (#1)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 07:48:17 AM EST
    to bluntly tell the truth about what is going on.

    "There is no common ground with fascists who want to kill you."

    Glad that the government is protecting the doctor. It would be nice if the President would speak out boldly on the domestic terrorism that is involved. A shame in more ways than one that he isn't.

    Common ground (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:21:14 AM EST
    on abortion....Hmmm, isn't that like being a little bit pregnant?

    Wish the "Democratic" president would stand for some Democratic principles.  He was elected because people rejected Republicanism.


    People may have rejected (5.00 / 3) (#7)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:32:30 AM EST
    Republicanism. Obama IIRC never really did.

    There's no common ground between us (none / 0) (#8)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:19:32 AM EST
    and the crazies who don't care if women are treated like cattle, but there's definitely common ground between pro-choice and moderates who have concerns about abortion. Both groups want fewer abortions, even if for different reasons. Having known many women who have repeated used publicly financed abortions instead of basic pregnancy prevention, I think our cause would be greatly furthered by them avoiding pregnancy. (Granted, drug addiction and poverty are often factors leading to mistaken pregnancies.) Luckily the best solution is in alignment with our goals - free or inexpensive access to birth control.

    Although I disagree with even moderate anti-abortionists, I think we ignore them at our peril. We're more likely to succeed if we work with them, not always against them. By lumping all anti-abortionists together, we validate the extreme right. The moderate's passion for "saving" fetuses would be better used toward efforts that fund health care and the children they claim to want to save. When pressed for money for this purpose from their own side, they may change their perspective to one that supports preventing as many unwanted pregnancies as we can. If Obama can find common ground, I think we have more of a chance to change their thinking.  If not, at least we can mitigate the political force they create when we ignore them and allow the right to use this as a wedge issue.

    I submit that our task now is to sever the connection between the moderates and the crazy anti-abortionists, and help create right of center organizations that allow anti-abortionists to put their money where their mouth is and support those "potential American citizens" as Bill O'Reilly calls them.


    Common Ground? (5.00 / 3) (#10)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:39:19 AM EST
    Easy access to the morning after pill is a good way to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

    Yet even as we speak Republican legislators are presenting bills that would prevent the distribution of the pill.

    Also, it is a cruel myth that the only reason for abortions is birth control. As in the case of Dr. Tiller, many abortions are performed for medical reasons.

    Seems to me that the more the pro-choice advocates have tried to be reasonable the further the anti-abortion folks have moved the boundaries of what is reasonable compromise to the point that we are about to lose the right of self determination entirely.  


    Separating those who want to prevent (none / 0) (#17)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 12:11:20 PM EST
    the use of valid birth control (morning after pill) from those who are simply concerned (and often misinformed) about abortions takes the wind out of the crazy's sails. Acknowledging that many women have used abortions instead of birth control, especially women who suffer from addition, poverty and unstable families of origin, allows us to address those moderate concerns that should also be our concerns.

    Refusing to admit that anyone would be so callous as to disregard birth control and then get the public to finance one or more abortions denies the reality that these instances not only exist, but are used by the right to manipulate moderate anti-abortionists. When women repeatedly use abortion instead of consistently using birth control, even if it's rare in the overall use of abortions, our side loses ground.

    I don't think any of the restrictions on the right to abortion have been because pro-choice advocates have tried to compromise. We have resisted each and every restriction imposed in the last 35 years, as well we should have. I believe in 100% unrestricted access to abortion, without any requirement allowing men to impose their will on a pregnant woman. Period. But I also think if we connect with moderates and listen to them and find solutions that meet the needs of both sides, we're better able to subvert the anti-choice political agenda. Listening to moderates and giving them a voice in our arena does not mean we have to give one inch on a woman's right to be the absolute final decider about her pregnancy.


    So called pro-choice legislators (5.00 / 4) (#20)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 12:37:51 PM EST
    used finding common ground, being reasonable and compromise to rationalize each and every restriction that has been imposed over the years. They have not only given the anti-abortion folks a voice in the legislative arena. They have given them and some of their completely false accusations the primary and at times the only voice in the arena.

    Late term abortions are not performed for the purpose of birth control. Yet, you don't hear much from the Dems to debunk this rhetoric.


    Our elected leaders will continue (none / 0) (#27)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:27:53 PM EST
    to fail us because people are so passionate and invested on both sides of the issue. Democrats won't risk the backlash of stepping out of the safe middle ground. If we peel off the moderates, the fascist wingers will be less able to manipulate the moderate vote, and our leaders may show more spine.

    The left wing media is doing a good job right now of reporting on those who have incited these anti-abortion domestic terrorists, but so far no one has stated the obvious fact that Tiller is a hero for saving lives of women. I think that's because women haven't stepped forward to share their experiences on this crucial component of the Tiller story. We need to find them and encourage them to come out and tell their stories.  

    Perhaps we also should think about a way to firmly establish through congressional action a women's right to abortion. Maybe something that prevents the government or other people from forcing anyone to bear a child against her wishes. And maybe we need an extension of the Clinton era FACE law to tie anti-abortion rhetoric to attacks on abortionists and clinic staff. Those attacks affect women's access to health services, which clearly make them terroristic. It's time to change the national discourse away from fetal death and toward the rights of women. As horrendous as Tiller's assassination is, we should not squander the opportunity to destroy the fascists' grip on our government and the electorate.


    Um, there is already such a bill in Congress... (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:45:09 PM EST
    "Perhaps we also should think about a way to firmly establish through congressional action a women's right to abortion."

    It's called the Freedom of Choice of Act.  Obama said it wasn't a priority for him, though he did campaign on it.  But you seem to think that's where the middle ground is, and unfortunately it isn't.  That would require a real fight, which is why I assume, it isn't a priority for Obama.


    Yes, but I would have named it differently (none / 0) (#36)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:07:40 PM EST
    and included verbiage that indicates that the opposite of "free choice" is forced pregnancy.

    I don't like the description "choice." I prefer stronger words like self determination.

    I'm also concerned that this phrase in the Act:
    ... or terminate a pregnancy after viability when necessary to protect her life or her health.

    could result in permanent restriction in all states of abortions after viability. I believe a woman should have the right to terminate a pregnancy if she finds out after the specified viability date that the fetus has serious problems that will impact its life. or hers. For instance, if a woman has a car accident that results in her carrying a living fetus that will be in a coma on life support after birth and is expected to never be conscious, she should have the right to terminate the pregnancy. Not all serious problems occur, or can be determined before the magic date of viability. And what happens as the viability date moves more toward the early stages of pregnancy? When a clump of human embryonic cells can be implanted into a cows uterus, will we be forced to pay for the artificial raising of every fertilized egg?

    I'd prefer federal law that explicitly states the right to abortion simply because the government and other people cannot force women to bear a child.


    Well, see, and you seem to believe that (none / 0) (#38)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:21:29 PM EST
    is the middle and the moderates are right there with you, which is simply not so.  

    Moderates are not right there with me, (none / 0) (#41)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:04:45 PM EST
    not at all. But I don't want them to be a political tool of the far right, so I'm willing to talk to them. Over the years, I've realized that many people don't grasp the complexities of this issue because they really never have put themselves in the position of needing an abortion. It's easy for them to believe the nonsense anti-abortionists spout about some people just willy-nilly killing babies through some kind of left wing dictated "choice." In my experience, plenty of women who are uncomfortable with abortion can still be convinced of the need for the right to have one, especially when confronted with real world examples like the ones I've already mentioned.

    As much as I believe 100% in a woman's right to abortion, for whatever reason she has, I also realize that in some cases abortion is literally taking a life. I'm not going to pretend otherwise, but I'm still willing to fight for every women's right to make that decision for herself.


    Wow. (none / 0) (#44)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:19:28 PM EST
    As much as I believe 100% in a woman's right to abortion, for whatever reason she has, I also realize that in some cases abortion is literally taking a life. I'm not going to pretend otherwise, but I'm still willing to fight for every women's right to make that decision [to take a life] for herself.

    I'll double that. (none / 0) (#45)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:26:23 PM EST
    Wow.  Wow.

    Wow all you want, (none / 0) (#48)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:34:34 PM EST
    but not understanding the heartfelt concerns of those who disagree with abortions is exactly how this issue got so polarized.

    No, it is not. (5.00 / 2) (#52)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 06:00:06 PM EST
    The issue is do women have domain over their own bodies or not.  It is by definition a polarizing issue.  There is no amount of debate that will change that.  At some point, one has to take a position.  I believe a woman has domain over her body or I do not.

    We're in agreement on that Masslib (none / 0) (#54)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 06:22:54 PM EST
    I believe so much that women should have control over their bodies that I'm being criticized upthread for that position.

    A fetus is a living being, but in my opinion a woman's right to reproductive decisions trumps fetal rights. After birth, the baby has rights. Before birth, it's the woman's body and I can only hope women make good decisions, or try to influence them to do so. But even if they don't, someone else shouldn't have the right to make those decisions.

    So far, only one state supreme court upheld the conviction of a woman charged with criminal child abuse for using illegal drugs during pregnancy (Whitner v. South Carolina,1997). All other states have reversed on appeal criminal convictions based on drug use by pregnant women. That may change, as many states now have child welfare laws to address prenatal drug exposure, treating the issue as a matter of civil rather than criminal law. This is a polarizing issue, but it's more than just a disagreement about whether or not women should have domain over their own bodies. A fetus is alive. I believe that reality is the driving factor behind the moderates' concerns about abortion.


    I understand, respect, appreciate (5.00 / 3) (#55)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 06:45:49 PM EST
    and acknowledge all the concerns a woman can have about abortion.  What she chooses to do about the embryo/fetus should be consistent with those concerns, and if she believes it is wrong to terminate the pregnancy, she should not do so.  If she is single, or economically in trouble, in a bad relationship - whatever - she should be able to get help, resources, aid, to help her however she needs.

    I completely understand that some women believe that their opposition to abortion should extend to all women, that somehow they feel obligated to protect what they see as a living being.

    But there has to be a zone of privacy that prevents others from imposing their will on us.

    And I would really, really appreciate it if the men that are so prevalent in this "debate," in many cases leading anti-choice organizations and organizing protests - and killing abortion providers - would butt the f**k out unless invited to express their opinion.


    I'm still trying to figure out (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 01:07:28 PM EST
    what could be more indicative of an open mind and an open heart and respect for the beliefs of others than supporting the right of every woman to make her own reproductive decisions.

    Anti-choice advocates have had, and continue to have, a very loud voice on abortion issue, and it is in no small way responsible for the restrictions that have eaten away at the right to choose.

    When you say:

    But I also think if we connect with moderates and listen to them and find solutions that meet the needs of both sides, we're better able to subvert the anti-choice political agenda

    my response is that if allowing women to make their own choices - one of which is to choose not to terminate a pregnancy - is not good enough, I don't think all the listening in the world will result in a solution to the anti-choice advocates' insistence that women do not really have dominion over their bodies if that body is harboring a fetus.

    And if the anti-choice contingent is also going to be opposed to anything that might prevent pregnancy - like ready access to birth control and sex education - and to programs that help support women and their children, we have even less to talk about with them.

    While I am not surprised that Obama has only managed to issue a relatively boilerplate statement following Tiller's assassination, I am disheartened that there are so few prominent pro-choice voices filling that void.


    We're actually in agreement but you may be (none / 0) (#22)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 01:56:11 PM EST
    missing my finer points of execution. Maybe the confusion is in who should be brought to the table in this discussion. My choices would not match Obama's, for instance.

    There are moderates who are concerned about abortions, perhaps because they aren't sure where the line is between terminating a pregnancy and killing another human being. My stance is that each and every woman gets to make that decision for herself because the alternative is forced childbearing. There are others who struggle with that concept, but who may still understand that wherever they personally draw the line, if the anti-choice fascists get their way they won't be allowed to get an abortion even if it's medically necessary for their health. Working with moderates who understand that the right itself is worth supporting is an excellent way to sever the small group of control freak fascists from the rest of the people who give them some validity just by agreeing partially with their viewpoints. We can peel those moderates off. I think we can do that by presenting stories of women who chose an abortion over waiting for a non-thriving fetus to die, or women who had to get a late term abortion because the baby would die right around the time of birth and would likely cause the mother's death as well. If we divide and conquer, the moderates will criticize the Bill Reilly's of the world for distorting the harsh reality of what women face.  


    Okay, I guess I'm just having an (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 03:35:41 PM EST
    "I don't get it" kind of day, because I cannot reconcile your call to reach out and listen and find solutions with the simultaneous use of the term "fascist."  I understand that you are trying to make a distinction between the moderates who are willing to agree on some elements of this issue, but can't take it all the way, and those who will never agree on much of anything, but I think terms like that are more likely to hurt than they are to help.  

    I think if we are going to advocate for dominion over our bodies, we have to respect the choices others make.  We cannot judge, or demean or ask them what they were thinking.  I think it is possible to respect those individual choices, on the one hand, but draw the line at any one position being the one that all women must follow.  

    Women deserve to be treated as something other than property, which is where we came from, not all that long ago; when we cede control over our bodies, that is where we are headed.  That is not forward movement, it is regression.  How can a woman be regarded as good enough and smart enough and experienced enough to run a major corporation, or be a partner in a law firm, or manager of the bank or President of the United States if she is not considered able or trusted or competent to make decisions about her own body?  Taking away the right to make our own decisions demeans us, shrinks us, subjugates us - why is that necessary?

    You will never win people over by trying to convince them of why abortion is necessary, or that is isn't as bad as people say it is, or having them listen to the horror stories, but you might stand a chance of preserving and protecting the right to choose if the issue is framed in terms of our being fully evolved human beings who can and should make these personal decisions for ourselves.

    It's not my place to talk anyone into accepting abortion, but I do think I can make the argument about why it is we need to be able to make our own decisions about our lives, our health and our futures.


    If we identify as fascists (5.00 / 0) (#39)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:41:53 PM EST
    those who unequivocally refuse to accept the concept of a woman's right to self determination in childbearing, and especially those who incite others to commit acts of terrorism, and clearly define them as separate from those who are uncomfortable with abortion, but who believe that at least some abortions are necessary and justified, we gain an audience that might be in agreement with the need to ensure their own right to all medical solutions to problems in pregnancy. Of course I don't want to call anyone against abortion a fascist. I want to connect with the moderates respectfully wherever we can agree. Good people who have mostly heard our opponents' side often don't realize that the issues are more complex. They hear idiots like O'Reilly screaming about baby killers, and they've never put themselves in the position of deciding what they would do if someone raped their ten year old daughter and she became pregnant. Or if they themselves had a fetus that was slowly dying over a period of months and the longer they wait for "nature's abortion" (i.e.- miscarriage), the more at risk they are of not being able to have babies in the future. Those are the real life stories that moderates need to hear. We talk about rights, but a good based-on-real-life movie might be what eventually reaches them.

    For too long we've drawn the abortion line between those of us for women's rights, and those who are against abortion. Now we have the opportunity to move the line way over to the right, separating those of us who agree on some aspects of abortion rights, and those who are fanatics. At the very least, we can get moderates to stop listening to the crazies and see them for what they really are.


    If we identify as fascists (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:50:06 PM EST
    If we identify as fascists those who unequivocally refuse to accept the concept of a woman's right to self determination in childbearing
    Well, sounds like you've just identified as fascists everyone except those who unequivocally believe in unrestricted abortion on demand.

    Good luck with that.


    Not sure what point you're trying (none / 0) (#43)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:11:18 PM EST
    to make Sarcastic, but your interpretation of what I said is wrong.

    Please quit misconstruing what I've said. You're becoming a troll.


    If we identify as fascists those who unequivocally refuse to accept the concept of a woman's right to self determination in childbearing

    Actually, don't answer.

    Between this and your upthread comment:

    As much as I believe 100% in a woman's right to abortion, for whatever reason she has, I also realize that in some cases abortion is literally taking a life. I'm not going to pretend otherwise, but I'm still willing to fight for every women's right to make that decision [to take a life!] for herself.
    I now realize that you are a deadender on this. Lunatic fringe.

    I won't waste any more of my time.


    Look, just draw a line on a piece of paper (none / 0) (#51)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:49:13 PM EST
    and divide into three sections. On the far right are the fascists who would force women to bear children against their will rather than to allow reproductive choice. On the far left are those who believe abortion is unequivocally a woman's right, regardless of what others believe. In the middle are the moderates, many of whom disagree with abortion but who aren't willing to resort to terrorism or it's promotion to get their way. Many others in the middle believe women should have the right to an abortion, even if they themselves would never choose that option.

    It's really not complicated. The fascists are those on the extreme right. Those in the middle are obviously NOT "everyone except those who unequivocally believe in unrestricted abortion on demand."

    So glad you're willing to stop misconstruing what I said. And if you want to pretend that a fetus is not a living being, go ahead. Some of us have faced that reality and still come to the conclusion that a woman's right to control her own body is paramount. Women can not be forced to bear children as if they are farm animals. Period.


    That sounds familiar... (none / 0) (#34)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 03:46:18 PM EST
    I cannot reconcile your call to reach out and listen and find solutions with the simultaneous use of the term "fascist." [...] I think terms like that are more likely to hurt than they are to help.

    if the anti-choice fascists get their way (none / 0) (#24)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:14:19 PM EST
    Well, if you really want to achieve what you say you want to achieve, you might want to drop this type of rhetoric.

    Though phrases like "anti-choice fascists" may get you some cred with pro-abortion fascists, it's unlikely to engender any moderates to your cause.

    Just sayin.


    There's no such thing as a pro-choice fascist. (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:33:41 PM EST
    Nobody shoots people for not having abortions. No one forces people to have an abortion. Get real Sarcastic UO.

    Pro-choice activists work for the right to have an abortion, or not.


    Thanks for proving my point. (none / 0) (#29)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:40:01 PM EST
    And your point is...? (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by otherlisa on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:50:36 PM EST
    To repeat: until pro-choice advocates try to force women to have abortions and assault and murder anti-choice advocates, there's no such thing as a "pro-abortion fascist."

    Your point is nonsensical.


    Well, my point is, (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:58:32 PM EST
    using such rhetoric is unlikely to engender any moderates to your cause.

    Can't be that hard to understand.


    Sorry (5.00 / 3) (#56)
    by otherlisa on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 07:09:27 PM EST
    To repeat a point made here over and over again. No common ground with people who do not recognize my autonomy as a person. Claiming that there is common ground creates a false equivalence. As others have said, do I have dominion over my body or do I not?

    I can be sensitive to others' beliefs, and I'm actually not a terribly confrontational person unless pushed - but the people Dr. Herne is talking about, the Operation Rescues, those who use intimidation and outright murder to force women to adhere to their ideology - they are fascists. As for the moderates, I won't call them that, but I refuse to accept their belief system as something which should have control over me and my choices.

    And there is no such thing as a "pro-choice fascist." That's clearly absurd. "Oh no! She's forcing me to CHOOSE!!!!!"

    And by the way, your use of the word "dead-ender" to describe pro-choice advocates is offensive. Should we talk about those "dead-ender" abolitionists and "dead-ender" suffragettes? I mean, how DARE they stand firm on equal rights?  


    So, be my guest, continue using the term (1.00 / 0) (#64)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:29:05 PM EST
    "anti-abortion fascists," see how well that works for you in appealing to the moderates.

    No one picketing a healthcare clinic (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by otherlisa on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:46:06 PM EST
    is a "moderate" on this issue.

    And as I've already said, I would not call an anti-choice "moderate" a "fascist." However I would not accept any compromise or false equivalence that allows their personal, generally religious opinion to compromise my or any other woman's autonomy.

    And I'll state that if you or anyone else does not support my right to make my own choices, you do not believe in women's equality.


    I believe in equality (none / 0) (#68)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Jun 03, 2009 at 12:47:39 AM EST
    w/o the need for adjectives.

    You apparently do not.


    Where are you getting that? (5.00 / 0) (#70)
    by otherlisa on Wed Jun 03, 2009 at 02:54:22 PM EST
    I've been pretty careful about my word choice here. People who use intimidation and violence to achieve their objectives and force others to their will deserve to be referred to in strong terms.

    If you truly believe in equality, why do you spend so much time excusing this behavior and refusing to label it for what it is? I have not seen one clear condemnation from you of these extremists. Just an implied demand that we make nice with people who do not believe we are autonomous beings.


    Sarcastic, no one is advocating calling (none / 0) (#60)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 08:11:33 PM EST
    the moderates fascists. My purpose is to separate the moderates from what I believe are true fascists. As the moderates come to realize that the far right anti-abortion fascists are responsible for inciting terrorism and murder, they will hopefully be repelled by that extremist faction. At which time they may be willing to give our side another look, especially if we are presenting very valid, moving and essential reasons why sensible, caring, considerate women sometimes painfully choose abortion.

    That is my point above, so please stop insisting that I am calling the moderates fascists. And if you don't agree with abortion rights, just say so. Don't imply I'm too stupid to realize calling moderates fascist would be contrary to my goals.


    I'm not implying anything, (1.00 / 0) (#62)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:19:18 PM EST
    I'm saying flat out that it's stupid to use the term "anti-abortion fascists" if you're trying to open dialogue with moderates, no matter how many times and how many hoops you jump through trying explain how the "anti-abortion fascists" are differentiated from any/everyone else. Kind of an extension or corollary or something of Godwin's Law.

    But, hey, it's your battle to lose. Knock yourself out.


    You're funny. (none / 0) (#71)
    by MyLeftMind on Wed Jun 03, 2009 at 02:58:22 PM EST
    I really hadn't planned on using the phrase "anti-abortion fascists" when talking to moderates, but thanks anyhow for the great advice.

    I'm guessing lots of moderates are already taking another look at the Tiller murderer's associations with anti-abortion organizations like Operation Rescue. Hopefully they are coming to their own conclusions and severely judging people and groups who incite terrorism.


    I think the point is that name-calling, (none / 0) (#63)
    by Anne on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:28:38 PM EST
    or labeling, is counter-productive to the whole situation.  You know and I know that calling someone a fascist is inflammatory, and whether these virulently anti-choice people can credibly be classified as fascists is irrelevant.

    The only purpose it serves is to take the focus off the issues and put people in the sandbox, throwing sand in each other's eyes.

    Better to just make your case, on its own merits, and avoid being drawn down to their level; at some point, it will be obvious who has the more rational and factual argument - the moderates you want to appeal to are not attracted by what seems like just a different form of irrational.


    Huh? Any "common ground" has (5.00 / 2) (#11)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:45:49 AM EST
    been reached as abortion is one of the most highly regulated medical procedures in the country.  We need to focus on more pressing concerns; health care, protecting womens rights, comprehensive sex ed, more accessible adoptions, lowering our appalling infant mortality rate, etc..  What we need to stop doing is pretending there is debating abortion.

    Allowing the right to restrict abortion (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 11:26:18 AM EST
    is not finding common ground. Connecting with moderates who want fewer abortions but who do not necessarily want to take away women's rights is finding common ground. If we separate those people from the crazies, it's easier to reduce the influence of the far right on Congress.

    Why not focus on the things that (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:20:28 PM EST
    increase abortion rates, ie lack of health care, poor sex ed., low wages, correct those, and let abortion rates drop on their own?  That's what Clinton did, and it worked, and note that the Right Wing was not at all appeased by that.  Indeed, they refused to see it at all.  You seem to see abortion rights in very simplistic terms, when the debate really actually centers on women's rights.  It's much more about maintaining patriarchy than protecting the "unborn".

    Pretending there is more (none / 0) (#12)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:47:13 AM EST
    "common ground" on a woman's right to choose.

    I would certainly be in favor or (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by hairspray on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 07:48:57 PM EST
    severing the moderate anti-abortionists (if there are such people) from the crazies by clearly delineating the reasons for third trimester abortions.  Too many people think that it is some sort of distortion of "choice" to allow these procedures.  They simply do not understand the compelling medical reasons (hydrocephaly, and anencephaly for instance) that call for this procedure. Its time they understand the full picture instead of the sound byte version.

    What??? (none / 0) (#35)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:03:08 PM EST
    "publicly financed abortions"???

    I don't think we've had those since the 80s.  I don't think public money can even be used to talk about abortion much less actually fund one.


    Please, not the "abortion doctor" term (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by FoxholeAtheist on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:12:34 PM EST
    It's wonderful that TL has an ongoing commitment to this story and I am very thankful for that. However, it's a disservice to Dr. Hern and Dr. Tiller to refer to them by the reductive and ignoble term "abortion doctor".

    I don't mean to be impolite here but "abortion doctor" is the preferred terminology of anti-choice extremists, right wing talk shows, conservative news rags and sensationalist hacks in mainstream media.  

    For a broader view of Dr. Hern's life work, see this excerpt from Daily Kos's BIOGRAPHY: WARREN M. HERN, M.D., M.P.H., PH.D:

    Dr. Warren Hern, Director of the Boulder Abortion Clinic, is a public health physician with over 35 years of experience with women's health issues. His awareness of the need for safe abortion services and advocacy of reproductive choice began during his experience as a medical student in Colorado and during his service as a Peace Corps physician in Brazil (1966-68). He was especially moved by the suffering of large numbers of Latin American women who were dying of illegal abortion. Their dilemma was similar to those Dr. Hern observed in American women as a medical student at the University of Colorado School of Medicine (M.D., 1965)...

    Dr. Hern studied epidemiology at the University of North Carolina School of Public Health in Chapel Hill...Following course work for his Master of Public Health degree at the University of North Carolina (1968-70), Dr. Hern was invited to become an official in the U.S. government's first family planning program for the poor...(Johnson Administration)...His official title was Chief, Program Development and Evaluation Branch, Family Planning Division, Office of Health Affairs, OEO, Executive Office of the President...

    He attended oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court in Vuitch (the first abortion case to reach the Supreme Court), and the first oral arguments for Roe vs. Wade and its companion case, Doe vs. Bolton. He was active in citizen's groups such as the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL) working for the legalization of abortion. His writings in national publications were reprinted and used by organizations such the Association for the Study of Abortion. It was during this time (1971-72) that he learned to perform abortions at PRETERM Clinic, the first non-profit abortion clinic in the nation's capitol.

    There's a lot more to Dr. Hern's bio and there's also an interview with Dr. Hern at the same Dkos link.

    Thank you again Jeralyn for dedicating space to this matter at TL.


    So far no mention (none / 0) (#3)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 08:43:34 AM EST

    of either Tiller or William Long.  Betcha a dime that one gets ignored.

    Thank you, Dr. Hern (5.00 / 3) (#2)
    by fiver2 on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 08:25:19 AM EST
    So few heroes are celebrated in their own lifetimes.  I will send a card to Dr. Hern today.

    Wow (5.00 / 4) (#6)
    by sj on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:30:37 AM EST
    That is a courageous man.  In every way.

    Terrorists (5.00 / 5) (#16)
    by DancingOpossum on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 11:37:16 AM EST
    Is what they are and what they should be called.

    women who have repeated used publicly financed abortions instead of basic pregnancy prevention

    Well, this is a lot less costly in every way than if they actually brought these children to term. And I don't doubt that there are women who use abortion as their only form of birth control, but what my anecdotal observations tell me is that there are many, many, many teenagers and women who have babies because they've been brainwashed into believing that abortion is evil and dangerous. (They say "Well, I don't believe in abortion," despite not having one single other expressed religious belief, going to church, or exhibiting any other faith-based behaviors.) That's why I dislike any talk of making abortion "rare" or "reducing abortions" because it perpetuates the notion that abortion is a horrible ghastly thing that all good and decent women must shun, instead of the safe, sane, healthy, alternative to an unwanted pregnancy that it actually is. The emotional element needs to be removed from discussions of abortion.

    Absolutely. (none / 0) (#18)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 12:28:48 PM EST
    And the domestic terrorists and those who incite violence are not ones we should be talking to. But the more we separate ourselves from moderate anti-abortionists, and that definition excludes anyone who wants to take away a woman's legal right to abortion, the more those moderates are swayed by the far right. I agree those women should have free access to abortions, but it's clear that their actions negatively impact our cause. Prevention would have been better.

    I doubt abortion will ever become rare, given the number of abortions that occur because 1) birth control frequently fails, 2) sexually active youth often disregard protections, and 3) many, many fetal abnormalities naturally occur and removal of a dying fetus before the woman's body miscarries it is probably a very common reason for abortion. If the fetus stops growing (a very common event with problem pregnancies) and will miscarry sometime in the next few months, a woman endangers her own health by waiting.
    I think it would be useful if women in the third category above "came out" and shared their stories so more people would realize that an abortion is often the only medical solution to a fetal developmental "act of god," so to speak.


    How about "act of nature" (5.00 / 4) (#19)
    by nycstray on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 12:32:34 PM EST
    we need to get "God" out of the conversation, imo.

    Or how about those things aren't anybody's (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:51:40 PM EST
    effing damned business.  It is probably one of the most horrible experiences you will ever have in your lifetime and if you have a spouse and other children and parents and grandparents.....them too.  Oh yeah, I have a horribly deformed doomed child in my womb and I'm going to personally put myself right up there for the crazies to dissect and then take a dump on in order to share one of the worst moments of agony in my lifetime.  That'll really help my healing and being able come back to joy in my life again........NOT!!!!  Anti-choicers DO NOT CARE about anything other than a fetus, period!

    OMG, they should "come out" (none / 0) (#26)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 02:22:23 PM EST
    and share their stories, huh?  Kind of negates the point of right to privacy.  

    Not should. (none / 0) (#46)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:29:46 PM EST
    But if some did, it would be beneficial to our cause because people, especially young women, would gain understanding of how restrictions interfere with women's health.

    BTW, "act of god," was snark.


    I wasn't the one who commented on (none / 0) (#53)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 06:02:07 PM EST
    the "act of God".  Further, women have told their stories, doctors have told stories, stories have been told.  It's not the responsibility of the minority to convince the majority of their rights.  

    "common ground" (1.00 / 0) (#57)
    by diogenes on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 07:24:28 PM EST
    How about if common ground is defined as allowing abortion on demand until week 20 but not later unless it the LIFE of the mother is at risk?  I don't see many prochoice people willing willing to even go that far.  The Obama common ground seems to be that abortion opponents should come on over to stop opposing abortion except on some abstract personal level.

    But a child born at 23 will most likely (5.00 / 0) (#66)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:56:51 PM EST
    be allowed to die.......life support measures will most likely not be administered.  Week 24 is still pretty iffy......lots of extreme severe disabilities in those kids if they manage to survive. Even upwards from that many physicians want to judge the situation case by case before they begin to suggest which premature births they think are worth fighting for.  NOPE.......not the answer.

    Maddow, Olbermann and Matthew on MSNBC (none / 0) (#5)
    by MyLeftMind on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 09:27:23 AM EST
    really nailed the problem yesterday. I just hope that kind of rhetoric seeps out to moderates.

    The one point the media isn't making yet is that these doctors are heroes who save women's lives. Hopefully, some women will step forward to tell their stories of how they needed an abortion as a medical procedure after they already lost their child, even if the fetus was technically still alive at the time of the abortion.

    Gosh, I'm sure that trio really nailed it. (5.00 / 4) (#14)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:55:49 AM EST
    I can only imagine.  

    Anybody know the procedure... (none / 0) (#9)
    by kdog on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:30:28 AM EST
    for getting Federal Marshall bodyguards as a private citizen?  I ain't knockin ' it necessarily, I'm sure the doc could use somebody watching his back...just curious how one would qualify for free federally subsidized bodyguards...I don't mind for the doc, but I certainly would mind for AIG execs, for example.

    You are one of two of a kind left (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 04:09:09 PM EST
    in the entire United States and the third person was just murdered in cold blood acting as an usher at his church.

    That's how you get protection of this kind.  You are an endangered species.  And as far as police activities go, I'm personally a-okay with them protecting people rather than beating their doors down looking for pot plants.


    Slightly O.T, (none / 0) (#42)
    by jondee on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:11:17 PM EST
    but, does anyone know if any surveys have ever been conducted to determine the % of the "pro-life" movement is anti-birth control?

    I don't, but I think the number is (none / 0) (#49)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:43:08 PM EST
    very low based on discussions that I've seen around the topic - I've only seen references though - not specific polling data.  IIRC, the discussions I saw probably came around the time of the Roberts nomination and confirmation process and some I think also came up around the time of the Lieberman battle.  Also around that time there were pharmacists refusing to dispense contraceptives - and Target and Walmart were involved.  Just sharing all of this to give you some fodder for googling.

    Perhaps the feds have intelligence suggesting more (none / 0) (#13)
    by masslib on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 10:48:28 AM EST
    attacks are coming.

    According to Hern he and Tiller both (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 05:47:33 PM EST
    have received tomes of death threats over the years.  He said in his interview on MSNBC that he received his first death threat about a week after he opened his clinic in the 70's and that it has gotten worse and worse over the years.

    If you delve deeper into the profiles of the killer and the organizations he has associated with over the past few decades, you'll find that most of these groups have a history of illegal or extra-legal activities as they might say.  They don't recognize the US gov't as being legit.


    It was really disheartening to hear (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by hairspray on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 07:56:47 PM EST
    Jonathon Turley (on Rachael Maddow) say that prosecuting these cases was difficult because the SC has protected this kind of speech!  DUH!  Threatening the life of a doctor doesn't seem to fall under the rubric of "hate speech" I guess.

    When it comes right down to it, (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Jun 02, 2009 at 08:52:21 PM EST
    I do not support prosecuting people for speech, but I do believe that death threats in combination with having bomb parts kind of does merit some sort of action.  I am not interested in creating a political prisoner class in this country anymore than we already have one.  I am not comfortable with the class of political prisoners we already have.