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Pro-Choice Demo (Three Stories)

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  • Dan Clore
    News & Views for Anarchists & Activists: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo [Despite the warning stories about violence from anarchists, right-wing pro-life
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 27, 2004
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      News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

      [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,
      what?--DC]

      *****

      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
      500,000 people.

      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,
      Kate, 23.

      "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
      Nation's Capitol
      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
      in 1973.

      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 March
      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
      fetus picture."

      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."

      --
      Dan Clore

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      News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

      "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
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