Pro-Choice Demo (Three Stories)
- News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
[Despite the warning stories about violence from anarchists,
right-wing "pro-life" idiots seem to be the only ones to
commit any acts of violence at the protest. Big surprise,
Posted on Sun, Apr. 25, 2004
Hundreds of thousands rally in favor of abortion rights
By Anastasia Ustinova and Alison Young
Knight Ridder Newspapers
WASHINGTON--In what may have been one of the largest rallies
in the history of the women's movement, hundreds of
thousands of marchers streamed down Washington's
Pennsylvania Avenue Sunday, chanting and waving signs
supporting abortion rights.
There were no official estimates of the size of the crowd,
but the rally was huge, with people filling the grassy lawn
of the National Mall from the Washington Monument to the
Capitol. Organizers put attendance at one million people.
Washington and U.S. Park police declined to estimate the
size of the crowd.
Gloria Steinem, the feminist writer and activist, called the
march "the biggest in the history of the women's movement in
this country," saying the turnout was far larger than a
similar march in 1992 attended by an estimated 250,000 to
Most of the marchers were female and young, but there were a
few male supporters and a sprinkling of Hollywood
celebrities. Many traveled to Washington by the busload from
across the country.
March organizers said their goal was to spotlight the
importance of a wide range of reproductive health issues for
women in the United States and abroad: Sex education, access
to birth control and prenatal care and social policies that
provide child care and job training to women with children.
But it was clear that many came out of concern that
retirements from an aging Supreme Court might allow a
re-elected President Bush to appoint new justices who might
overturn the Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion in
the United States three decades ago.
In addition to placards endorsing abortion rights, many
marchers sported signs and buttons endorsing the
presidential candidacy of Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.
"We are here because we are fed up with the U.S. policies
that are so anti-women. We are not going to take it
anymore," said Steinem. "We are going to take back our
country one more time."
That theme was repeated in variation by people from across
the United States, as well as other countries.
Charlotte Kish, 71, of Detroit, Mich., who came with a group
called "Raging Grannies," recalled that before the abortions
were legalized nationwide, Michigan residents had to travel
to a clinic in New York.
"Now our right to choose is gradually deteriorating again,"
Kish said. "I am marching because this administration's
policies are against justice."
Barbara Rose, 49, a Planned Parenthood counselor from San
Jose, Calif., said she was marching because of her daughter,
"She may now have to fight for her reproductive freedom,"
Rose said, hugging Kate. "But this rally is the best
education for her."
Abortion-rights advocates say they are particularly
concerned about the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, which
grants a fetus legal rights, and the Partial-Birth Abortion
Ban Act, which criminalizes a medical procedure used after
the first trimester, both signed into law by President Bush.
About 1,000 anti-abortion protesters spread themselves along
Pennsylvania Avenue, holding photos of fetuses and signs
saying abortion is murder. Confrontations between the two
sides were emotional, but largely peaceful.
By late afternoon, U.S. Park Police had made 17 arrests: One
person for disorderly conduct for throwing paint-filled eggs
at marchers and 16 members of the Christian Defense
Coalition for demonstrating without a permit in an area
reserved for rally participants.
Throughout the day, speakers urged marchers to use the power
of their vote to preserve abortion rights.
"There were 50 million women in our country eligible to vote
who did not vote in the 2000 election," said U.S. Sen.
Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., who was greeted with roars
of support from the crowd. "When you go home, between now
and the election, I want you to start asking people around
you if they're registered to vote."
Hollywood and music celebrities, including Ashley Judd, Lisa
Gay Hamilton, Julianne Moore, Susan Sarandon, Moby and the
Indigo Girls also voiced their support as did failed
Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean.
Actress Whoopi Goldberg brandished a wire coat hanger, a
symbol of self abortions, as she stood on a stage in front
of the U.S. Capitol. "There is a whole generation of people
who don't know what that is," she said. "This is what we
used, and never again will this be the choice of any women
in this world."
The rally was organized by a coalition of seven women's
rights groups: Planned Parenthood Federation of America,
NARL Pro-Choice America, National Organization for Women,
the American Civil Liberties Union, Black Women's Health
Imperative, National Latina Institute for Reproductive
Health and the Feminist Majority.
Choosing Death Over Life, Abortion Advocates Rally in
Marchers Elevate 'Right' to Choose Over Unborns' Right to Live
By Bill Fancher, Mary Rettig, and Jody Brown
April 26, 2004
(AgapePress)--Media reports differ as to how many people
were in Washington, DC, on Sunday to participate in the
pro-abortion "March for Women's Lives." But no one disputes
why they were there: to demonstrate their belief that a
woman's "right" to choose an abortion takes precedence over
the life of an innocent, unborn child.
It may have been the largest pro-abortion demonstration in
the nation's history -- but no one knows for sure. Planned
Parenthood, one of the organizers of the march, predicted
that "more than one million women, men, and children" would
be on the National Mall and on Pennsylvania Avenue. But
estimates following the actual event ranged from "tens of
thousands" (the New York Times) to "hundreds of thousands of
protesters" (Reuters and Associated Press) to "1,150,000" in
a post-march press release from the organizers. There are no
officials estimates of the crowd size as the National Park
Service no longer offers crowd counts.
Regardless of the number, pro-life supporters along the
route report they witnessed demonstrators -- who screamed
obscenities and spit at them as they stood on the sidewalk
-- jubilantly celebrating legalized abortion and the deaths
of millions of babies killed since the Roe v. Wade decision
Smaller in number than the marchers, the pro-lifers endured
jeering, taunts, cursing, yelling, and obscene gestures in
order to make their statements for the unborn. Most of the
counter-demonstrators stood in silence, holding their signs,
as the marchers passed. One pro-life advocate, a man named
Anthony from Alexandria, Virginiz, summed up what many of
the defenders of the unborn felt.
"I'm very sad -- I am extremely sad. I'm a historian and I
know that any society that repudiates its past and
slaughters its young is doomed -- and that's what we're
doing," he said. "World War II was regarded as one of the
greatest tragedies of the human race; and we are celebrating
the murder of 43 million people. God help us when the
butcher's bill comes in -- God help us all."
Randall Terry, founder of Operation Rescue, was on hand with
a bullhorn, challenging the marchers as they passed. "Why
are you supporting the murder of innocent children?" he
asked. "You're supporting murder. You're supporting murder.
Shame, shame on you!"
Afterward, Terry talked about the mental state of the
pro-abortion participants. "They don't think, they don't
reason -- and they don't want to think or reason -- because
in their heart of hearts, they know that they're supporting
the murder of an innocent human being," he said. "This is a
death march. It's very scary. They're supporting the killing
of children, so they shut off their ability to reason."
The pro-abortion marchers were supplemented by demonstrators
from several other groups, including the IMF-World Bank
crowd, anti-Bush forces, anti-war activists, homosexuals,
and environmentalists. There were even pro-Martha Stewart
people marching along with a group called "Anarchists for
Sex and Cheap Abortions."
Associated Press reports that police arrested 16 people from
the Christian Defense Coalition for demonstrating without a
permit. Last week, that group's application for a permit was
rejected by the National Park Service, which said the
group's planned silent demonstration involving women who
have been harmed by abortion would have been too disruptive.
A Hollywood Pro-Lifer
Pro-abortion speakers for Sunday's march included the usual
line-up: Kate Michelman, president of NARAL Pro-Choice
America; Gloria Feldt, president of Planned Parenthood of
America; California Democrat Senator Barbara Boxer; ACLU
Executive Director Anthony Romero; media mogul Ted Turner;
and a bevy of Hollywood feminists, including Whoopi
Goldberg, Susan Sarandon, and Ashley Judd.
But one member of the Hollywood crowd was taking a stand for
unborn children. Patricia Heaton, best known for her role on
the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond, says "every woman
deserves better than an abortion, and every child deserves a
chance at life."
Heaton, a two-time Emmy-winning actress who is honorary
chair of the group Feminists for Life, explains that it is
impossible for her to subscribe to a philosophy that
believes the destruction of human life is the answer to a
problem that is mostly social, economic, or psychological.
The actress also says that women who experience unplanned
pregnancy "also deserve unplanned joy" -- and that abortion
is the result of society failing women.
Tuesday April 20, 2004
Pro-Abortion Protesters Pledge to Attack Pro-Lifers at
WASHINGTON, DC, April 20, 2004
(culture-of-life.org/LifeSiteNews.com)--The Culture of Life
Foundation reports today that at least one pro-abortion
group has threatened to assault pro-life counter-protestors
during the pro-abortion "March for Women's Lives" next
Sunday in Washington DC. The first of its kind since 1992,
the March is being described by the National Organization
for Women (NOW) as "the most significant and massive
abortion rights march in over a decade."
In response to pro-life groups that have announced
counter-protests, pro-abortion demonstrators are encouraging
destructive and confrontational tactics. In an alert sent
out to its supporters, a group calling itself the Radical
Cheerleaders of DC said that pro-lifers will be present at
the March, and that engaging them in debate is useless
"because they are irrational and will not listen to you," so
one way to handle them is to destroy their property, because
"a thick layer of paint could really complement a bloody
Pro-life demonstrators and organizations plan to congregate
along the sidewalks of the March route. They will gather
according to specific groupings such as parents with small
children and infants, women who have had abortions, college
students, pro-abortion converts, and the clergy. This has
angered pro-abortion organizers.
The NOW website explains that the first amendment grants
pro-lifers "the right to hold a counter-protest, but it does
not grant them the right to interfere with our
demonstration. Washington D.C. police are already
negotiating with the reproductive rights opponents to
determine a specific site for their counter-protest that
will minimize the possibility of confrontation."
The Radical Cheerleaders calls upon "feminists, radical
cheerleaders, anti-authoritarians, [and] anarchists" to
"rise up against a tyrannical government which threatens to
penetrate women's bodies with its laws." The group also
calls upon the radical community to move beyond the current
pro-choice movement, which it claims has not done enough for
women. Spokesmen say the group plans on "showing the
government, as well as the pro-choice movement, that the
radical community is as committed to the issue of women's
choice as it is to anything else." In January, the group
held a "guerrilla workshop" to practice organized resistance
for the march as well as other events.
Further fuelling fears of violence, in order to swell their
numbers, March sponsors have invited the participation of
anti-globalization groups who will already be in Washington
DC to protest the International Monetary Fund and the World
Bank. Massive violence has followed wherever the
anti-globalists gather, including in Genoa, Italy, where
anti-globalists rioted and one demonstrator was killed.
According to the Washington Post, one of these groups,
Mobilization for Global Justice, which organized the 2000
protests that "led to mass arrests and disrupted parts of
downtown," plans on "having a contingent at the women's march."
Now available: _The Unspeakable and Others_
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News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
"It's a political statement -- or, rather, an
*anti*-political statement. The symbol for *anarchy*!"
-- Batman, explaining the circle-A graffiti, in
_Detective Comics_ #608