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choicelady On October - 25 - 2010

Tonight’s special on the assassination of Dr. George Tiller cut my heart out. I am about to “out” myself for the world to see. I knew both George Tiller AND Bart Slepian, and I am on the Nuremberg List, destined for assassination myself.

I don’t know how to explain to anyone who thinks fetuses are equivalent to adults how much your opinion of that does not set global morality. What I will say is that there is not a woman alive who has not, at some point, harbored the desire to have a child complete with the white picket fence and “happily ever after”. OK – that might not be YOUR version of it all, but I hope you get my point.

Abortion is the hardest choice most women ever have to make. Most of us will never confront “Sophie’s Choice” of picking one child to live, another to die as the Nazis imposed on that fictional – and too many real – characters.

But virtually no woman picks abortion as a first option. None, no one, zip, nadie. NO one. It is, however, what happends when the guy’s the wrong guy, the money is not there, and, as George Tiller knew – the fetus isn’t there either.

Women are not empty vessels who serve for only reproduction. Let me just say that and move on. Women are NOT just EMPTY VESSELS.

I escorted Bart Slepain for over 10 years in and out of abortion facilities in upper New York state. Why? The same reason I escorted women in and out of clinics. This is the hardest thing a woman or doctor will ever do, and no one should go through it without a kind word, a gentle hand, a protective presence. Same with doctors. I stepped between Bart and REAL trouble twice. I was not, however, present at his home the night of October 23, 1998, 12 years and 2 days ago, when James Kopp thought God elected him to shoot my friend through the kitchen window and the heart.

In 2001 I was part of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice presence outside Dr. Tiller’s office for almost two weeks while the publicilty-craving Operation Save America zealots picketed his office. The first Sunday we went to the Lutheran Church to which the Tiller family belonged to bear witness for him there. The service was invaded by a group of about seven men who sat together in one pew. I got up and entered the pew on the aisle side blocking them in and preventing their ability to demonstrate inside the church. Outside? The church had butcher paper in the windows so the kids would NOT have to see the gory signs with pictures of aborted? Miscarried? fetuses dripping with blood.

This was a church. They did not give a shit. It wasn’t their church, so it did not matter to the protesters at ALL.

The ones I blocked in were spitting angry, but it worked. They did not do their “thing” at that service. But I was not there May 30 2009. And one of them killed George in the vestibule where he was acting as an usher.

I am sick of the Christian extremists who think they, above all, are the chosen. They have the “word” from God, and they have the right to decide who lives and who dies.

I’ve lived through the siege of Buffalo in 1992 with thousands of the self righteous blocking access to clinics. I’ve lived through the deaths of doctors, escorts just as I was, and of clinci staff. I’ve lived through years of unrelenting harassment by these evil and unprincipled people who mean me harm but are too cowardly to be visible. They are the rats in the sewers. No morality, no principles, no courage – only sneaking at night, running away, pleading some fucking higher cause.

I’ve lost five friends and acquaintances through RW assassination, and I’ve been stalked five times by these slimy people. It continues even now as the “Christian Embassy” people harass me at home because I have the audacity to insist they do NOT have a pre-eminant right to take over our institutions of government and the military.

So I live in uneasiness – not fear because I have no energy left – but uneasiness indeed. You never know what that sound is. You never know who that person turning abruptly towward you or coming into your office is – or could be.

We speak of the RW as if they are abstract nuisances, distant shapers of policy. But for me they are up front, personal, and real. I can name names, and I know what they want. They are Christian Dominionists who truly desire to rule the world. Nothing less will suffice. They are after me – but they are equally after YOU. At the moment I’m the target because I DARE to say that Christianity not only does not require this veiwpoint, it repudiates it! Those are messages that cannot and must not become public. But next it will be you. All the things that make us laugh – the “prohibition” on premarital sex from Christine etc. – will come true if they win.

They will win if we do not take them seriously. We now have so many dead and maimed – like Emily Lyons the brave Birmingham, AL nurse who carries hundreds of nail shards in her body from Eric Rudolph’s bomb and the Springfield, MO staffer who is a paraplegic from wounds suffered in the first clinic assault.

And there are hundreds of us who have scars you cannot see – scars on our hope, scars on our optimism, scars on our hearts. We are the survivors – the family, friends, staff, communities who had violence beyond belief occur to us and who carry that every day.

I hate these people with a rage and disgust I cannot even articulate. I detest their success, their smugness, and more than that, I detest the apathy that exists about what they have done. These are American terrorist – oh, yeah – Tim McVeigh was one of them – and we just don’t give a damn. Until it happens to us.

And if the Dominionists prevail, let me tell you, it will.

Categories: Terrorism

Written by choicelady

I am the public policy director for a large, very progressive faith organization. We believe in science, democracy, full equality for all people (NO exceptions), peace, and justice. We respect other people, but it doesn't mean we share their views. Nice to have a world of progressive thought. Rather like finally getting fresh air after a very smoggy day!

20 Responses so far.

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  1. whatsthatsound says:

    choicelady, you are an incredibly brave person, leading an inspirational life. There aren’t many who do what you do, overcome fear so that it doesn’t interfere with the work, the calling, you have chosen. God bless you!

  2. kesmarn says:

    To c’lady and Kalima both: may I begin by telling you how grateful I am for your bravery. Bravery in telling such deeply personal stories and bravery in facing down people who want to judge, condemn and punish as if they were God almighty.

    C’lady, I know you take every precaution in trying to keep yourself safe, but please be careful. The world needs people like you. The world needs you. This planet (both our Planet and the larger one) would be a much poorer place without you.

    Why is virtually every extremely fundamentalist version of any major relgion so misogynistic? What is it about a free woman that terrifies them so?

    These RWers who have done so much harm, and have spared no effort to make your life miserable — do they ever, once, ask themselves what really drives women to make such a desperate decision? Do they ever morally condemn men who have serial one-night stands with multiple women and never even dream of using a condom? Do they ever scold men who refuse to pay child support or to be involved in any aspect of their children’s lives? (And do they see the connection between that emotional and financial neglect and the choice of abortion by overwhelmed women?) Does the fact that women make about $.75 to every $1 men make bother them? Do they themselves adopt children or offer support to struggling mothers?

    Do they oppose unjustified wars? (Where were they with their “pro-life” stand when Bush invaded Iraq?) Do they oppose the death penalty?

    How can they begin to call themselves pro-life when they threaten and kill not only abortion providers, but even terrorize people who merely want to reach out a hand of compassion to people going through a dreadful time?

    Forgive all the rhetorical questions. I know that you know all of this. But I wonder how long it’s going to take them to catch on to the fact that their delusional and perverted version of religion has its roots in fear and fury only — nothing else.

    And neither of them — neither fear nor fury — is of God. So who, then, is their real theological leader? I think we know…And they’re afraid to ask themselves that question.

    What would Jesus do? I know for damn sure, he wouldn’t be one of them. “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” They are stone-throwers and nothing but.

    Stay strong, c’lady. Our prayers-- of whatever form — are with you.

  3. bitohistory says:

    Voters Turn on Anti-Choice Extremism

    Interesting article from “truthout” observing that while the national media has not been covering the extreme anti-choice platforms of some candidates, the local media are and it is having some effect on voters.
    Once again, one wonders why their anti women positions do not get covered.

    Like Mightywoof, I am old enough to remember when abortions were killing women and the hardships and frightening choices they had to make. An ugly memory. Was it not the reason some states had legal abortions was because women, mostly poor women, were getting killed, maimed and left barren in back alleys and filthy “procedure rooms”?

    Thank you for writing this Choice Lady. It allows me to admire you for your good works even more. What an insightful writing.

  4. SueInCa says:

    Choice Lady

    Now, you know I have no argument with anything you have said here. The term you used, Christian Embassy, is that a real name of a group? If it is, you know I am going to learn all about them.

    I am so sorry you had to go through so much and especially for your friends. It is no different than being a martyr for “Muhammed the Profit” which these people deride all the time.

    I am truly afraid for this country.

    • choicelady says:

      Hi Sue and bito -- you are indeed right. They are the grow up version of Campus Crusade and the force behind spreading “christianity” to the military, foreign service, etc. Their main goal? Capture Israel so they can fulfill the “prophecy” (they made up) of rebuilding the Temple so Jesus can return. It means that for now they have to be nice to Jews. Scant comfort after 2000 years of not. They are behind much of the Islamophobia today, and they are determined that their religious freedom involves having free control of governmental structures and organizations. To stop them is equal to persecution.

      They are very scary people. C Street, Franklin Graham, ‘death to gay’ laws in Uganda -- there is no end to their impact. What they have in store for us here is beyond horrifying. Imagine your kids being taught that the greatest American was Stonewall Jackson. They believe that. And if they get control, that’s what they will teach in schools.

      Horrible, awful, wicked people.

      • SueInCa says:

        I know as much as most or maybe more than most what they are up to and I don’t like it one bit. Maybe I should say it terrifies me. I try to do what I can by talking to people and speaking up but it just feels like I could be doing more. I am amazed at the number of people who follow this crap blindly. But I also understand the need for an authoritarian leader who can make decisions for the people who are not capable themselves.

        One thing that has always bugged me is their activites toward the homeless and down and out folks. Not that I don’t think they should be helped, they should, but using God and the Bible to pull them in and manage to make that particular denomination the savior is disgusting. I prefer the free will and hand up approach. To me they are preying on people who are weak already and are susceptible to dogma. Their first efforts should be to turn that person around and help them to become once again a productive member of society. Either they have no intention of truly helping that person or they fear if that person became once again productive and realized their self worth, the dogma might not be as powerful?

    • bitohistory says:


      Christian Embassy

      TruthOut’s article on some of their work

      They sound so “C-Street” to me.

      • SueInCa says:

        OMG, OF COURSE I know who they are, Bill Bright and his crew. I just never heard them called that. Campus Crusade for Christ would have rung a bell immediately. Thanks Bito

        • bitohistory says:

          Somehow I knew, you knew. 😉
          When I saw it in C’lady’s challenging article, I took a chance and did a quick search. Are they, in some way, tied into C-Street?

          • SueInCa says:

            In some way, probably but they are the 7 Mountains gang. You know the ones who are taking over our culture bit by bit? Education, Religion, Government, Arts and Entertainment, Business et al. you can see it more and more in our country today…………..

            • choicelady says:

              Ye -- they are part of the New Apostolic Reformation from top (C Street) to bottom (congregations) that want to capture ALL the Seven Mountains or Pillars.

              I’m not giving up even ONE pillar to them. Not even a speed bump much less a mountain.

  5. Haruko Haruhara says:

    Wow. Powerful.

    I had an argument with one troll who didn’t see a problem with these people following women around at abortion clinics and writing down their license plates numbers, etc. He said there was nothing “threatening” about that. Another troll said these women should be prosecuted for murder, so whatever actions the protesters do pales by comparison.

    There’s no reasoning with people like that. They are beyond reason. All you can do is oppose them.

    • choicelady says:

      Hi Haruko-

      The trolls are all people who’ve not ever had to face anything really difficult. Yet. It was a source of real anger to clinics and doctors though when young women on “that” side of the line would wind up in the clinic. They’d rationalize it -- Oh, I’m DIFFERENT -- and go back picketing and hounding other women and girls. Even we escorts could not”out” them, but it was maddening how utterly hypocritical they were!

      I do understand real pro-life people -- ones who carry through in loving kindness to kids who are here. But I do NOT have a shred of respect for the anti-abortion people who kill on one hand and cut off help for children with the other hand. They are just sanctimonious creeps. Randall Terry is the worst. BTW -- he hit me in the arm once while flailing around dramatizing his harangue. When he saw it was an escort, he did not even apologize. No humanity ever snuck into his firmament. He is on the outs with the movement now -- he’s an adulterer who dumped his wife for a trophy second wife. But that has not humbled him one iota. He, like the girls who cross over, apparently has a pass from God.

      They are beyond belief.

  6. Mightywoof says:

    I don’t know how you do it CLady -- it’s one thing to volunteer, as you did, to walk women through the lines of hate outside abortion clinics but to do it again and again and again in the face of such threats is unbelievable -- and brave.

    I don’t know about anyone else on the Planet, but I’m old enough to remember what the world was like for women before abortion was de-criminalized …… home made remedies (a bottle of gin and a hot bath) or back street butchers (coat hanger hooks and dirty tables) were the norm …… and women died -- D E A D died. So not only does criminalizing abortion not prevent the death of a fetus, it also adds the death of the woman to it’s grisly toll. And for those of you women too young to remember what life was like for a woman pre legal abortions -- your body was not your own, it belonged to everybody else except you. I cannot tell you the sense of freedom I felt when abortion became legal in Canada -- finally, I was a Person! So I feel utter contempt for anybody that preaches to a woman about what they should do with their own bodies.

    {{{{hugs}}}} Kalima -- what a terrible choice you & hubby had to face -- but it was your choice to make and nobody elses.

    CLady -- I want you to take very good care of yourself; quite apart from the fact that I like you and would not want your light to be lost to this world, I don’t want those bastards to win!

    • Kalima says:

      Thanks for the hugs Mw, I send you some back knowing that you are in need of them too during your stressing time with your little friend.

      O/T, sorry cl. We give them raw meat during this time. Small portions, right up to the back of the the throat, holding their mouths shut slightly, while stroking under their chin, it encourages them to swallow. It is however quite stressful on both you and your kitty at first, but they get used to it in a few days. Again, sorry cl and all the best to you Mw.

    • choicelady says:

      Thank you, Mighty! I’m workin’ on it! I don’t want them to win either, and I’m not going down without a fight!

  7. Khirad says:

    A chilling personal touch to an already chilling subject.

  8. Kalima says:

    Self-righteous people parading as Christians have always been a pet peeve of mine, as is anyone who would lord their beliefs over mine. I learned many years ago that there is no point talking to them on a personal level, their ears only hear what they are programmed to hear by the people who are held in high esteem to fool them.

    This whole idea that a group of loud, abusive and violent people who protest, threaten, and murder for something they believe we should all believe in, is sickening. That they can influence politicians to take away the right of any woman over her own body, is criminal, and an infringement on our human rights.

    You write that no woman comes to this decision easily, and you couldn’t be more right. I had this decision in my late 20’s after already losing a child a few years before I had this decision to make. It wasn’t a decision to make overnight, it took me 10 days to decide. The trip to my doctor was the most agonizing time in my life after the loss of our tiny son. I cried on the drive over. I cried as I lay on the operating table. I cried when I woke up, and on the way home. I can’t remember when the daily crying actually stopped, but it did, and when it did, it was replaced by the most overpowering feeling of guilt, this has never left me, even to this day. So every year when I remember my son’s birthday in June, he would have been 25 this year, I have to remember too, my other child who would have been 23 this year.

    So you see, these folks have no moral rights over me, or you, or anyone else for that matter. They also have no rights with my body, my family life, or the circumstances we find ourselves in to prompt this painful decision. That was for my husband and I to discuss with our doctor and between ourselves. All they really want to do is make us slaves to their contorted religious beliefs, it’s just not enough that they alone believe, they need to take over the reproductive cycle of ALL women, everywhere, and tell us that this is what God wants, even if you don’t believe in a God, or their God.

    You see, I was born into a RC family, and even my beliefs now could not be changed if the whole of the Catholic Church comes down on me. We disagree on birth control, abortion choice, and homosexuality, so I no longer attend Mass, I’m not a hypocrite. The point is that I don’t fear God, and never have. I will not be going to Hell for what I did, but the ones who call themselves Christians, who have hate in their hearts, enough hate to kill people who have different views, who threaten and murder doctors who try to help woman in their time of need, well these people might just find themselves going there when their time comes, if there is indeed a Hell. I really can’t ever imagine a place that is worse than Earth, can you?

    If they follow the teachings of Jesus, which I know they certainly don’t, then they should remember and honour the 6th Commandment, “Thou shall not kill” unfortunately their own hypocrisy seems to elude them, and they have the audacity to label us “baby killers.”

    Government and religious extremism has no place in making laws to deny women their freedom of choice, they morally have no rights at all. If these people are so against abortion, I would tell them don’t have one then. Forcing a woman to give birth to a very sick child without hope of survival, a rapist’s child, her father’s or brother’s child, is the most awful torture a woman could endure. In fact instead of passing laws to ensure it, laws must be passed to make it a criminal offense.

    I’m sorry that these faux Christians have murdered so many of your friends cl. I’m sorry to hear that they make your life so uncomfortable. This is one of the reasons that everyone who is eligible to vote must vote in November, you just can’t let the religious extremists win in America. If you think it’s bad now, can you imagine the nonsense they will start if they are elected. I shudder at the thought.

    I thought that “Freedom of Religion” also means “Freedom from Religion” or did I get this wrong?

    • choicelady says:

      Dear Kalima -- I’m so sorry for your losses. Anyone who thinks this is a casual decision must read your tears. I’m sad you have gone through this but so admiring of your decision to HAVE a decision. This is between you and your husband, and the fact you did not tell us the “why” is as it should be. It’s not any of our business. We embrace you in the humanity of your worth and all your feelings, period.

      I cannot stress enough how ugly life will be if the extremists dominate us. Big Brother will be everywhere watching our every move so our persons will be under their control however they wish to impose their morality.

      Brave new world. When they say they want you -- they ain’t kidding. Look out!

      • Kalima says:

        Thank you for your kind words cl, but my tears are nothing in the ocean of tears shed by almost every woman around the world who has gone through this heartbreaking experience.

        When I hear the loudest opponents of a woman’s right to choose, and realize that the majority of them were born without a uterus, and if married, have wives who no longer have to worry about the risk of pregnancy, it makes my blood boil. I want to tape shut their mouths and tell them that they have absolutely no idea what they are talking about and therefore no right whatsoever to lecture us.

        What about the millions upon millions of children waiting for adoption who will never find a family who will take them in and love them?

        What about children who are placed in abusive foster care, or are passed around from family to family like a box full of discarded kittens?

        What do these poor children go through while waiting and hoping?

        These people think that they want to put a stamp on every woman’s womb, to make it the property of the government until a child is born, after which when they have reached their tyrannical goal in life, they can promptly forget about the newborn, that’s someone else’s job.

        These people are very dangerous, and everything that can be done, should be done by voting to keep these “dictators” out of your congress. I am very afraid for all of you.

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