The real reason pro-choice activists accuse the pro-life movement of terrorism

By Jonathon Van Maren

In the wake of the murder of three people, including a pro-life pastor, and the injuring of nine others, Canada’s abortion activists are predictably falling all over themselves to assert that pro-lifers are “terrorists” by virtue of the fact that we highlight the legal killing of pre-born children. Joyce Arthur of the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada responded to my column on the shootings as an “incitement to violence” in and of itself, and the lovely Fern Hill, a pseudonymous blogger, wrote up a profile of the “typical pro-life terrorist” with similar accusations and her signature name-calling. Robyn Urback in the National Post accused GOP candidates who had the gall to mention that Planned Parenthood is guilty of all sorts of horrifying actions against pre-born children of being partially responsible for the murders, as well.

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There’s a few things to note here. First of all, this marks the first time that many of Canada’s abortion activists and their media friends took any notice of the Planned Parenthood baby parts scandal at all, so there’s that. They only poked their heads over the battlements of their pro-abortion media bubble when they sensed the chance to lay corpses at the feet of those who tirelessly expose those being killed by the abortion industry.

Second of all, reading through these blog posts would be funny if the accusations were not so serious. It seems that the air-tight skulls of Fern Hill and the rest of the aging feminist vanguard simply cannot understand that some people do not think violence is the answer to everything. The pro-abortion worldview is one based on the very simple premise that violence—the physical destruction of a human being developing in the womb—is the answer to virtually every imaginable situation. Whether it be economic circumstances, a failing relationship, not feeling ready to parent, sexual assault, or medical difficulty, abortion is always the answer. So when a deranged recluse opens fire from a Planned Parenthood in Colorado—shooting, it must be said, without seeming to target anyone specifically—it’s understandable that they look at their ideological opponents in the abortion debate and assume that we’re taking a page out of their playbook.

They simply do not understand the pro-life view: For all their delusional babble about pro-lifers “hating women” (what about the nearly half of American women who are pro-life?), the pro-life movement is opposed, consistently, to using violence in any circumstance. We do not respond to inconvenience or disagreement with violence. That’s the modus operandi of the other side.

It’s interesting how the regular violence against pro-lifers on both sides of the border—including a knife attack at Life Chain in Toronto, pro-life activists getting punched, shoved, and otherwise assaulted by those of the pro-choice worldview, and even instances of pro-life activists getting shot—pass by without even a whisper from abortion activists. In many instances of violence, comments on social media indicate that they feel this is rather righteous blowback against those who dare to show pictures of abortion victims. There’s another irony—abortion is so grotesque and so violent, that according to abortion activists, even showing pictures of it constitutes violence—but for those exposing the deed rather than those committing the deed.

Pro-lifers are aware that the pro-“choice” movement is so desperate to project the violence of their worldview back on to the pro-life movement that they will blame us for virtually anything that they can, while ignoring any violence that doesn’t fit their semi-literate blog diagnoses of what we actually believe. That’s why when abortionist Kermit Gosnell of Philadelphia got caught delivering babies alive and then snipping their spinal cords with scissors, the abortion movement promptly blamed pro-lifers, insisting that restrictive laws had forced Kermit to kill with scissors and run a seedy operation, while in fact a nice, clean, sterile clinic could have done the abortions if pro-life laws demanding such things hadn't stopped them. Regardless of innumerable stories of born-alive infants being killed after birth and a cadre of Kermits committing the deeds, abortion activists like Fern Hill, Joyce Arthur, and others happily look away—unless they can find some way to blame pro-lifers for the killing of infants that should have been aborted a few hours earlier, in the womb.

I’d like to make one final point, one already made eloquently by pro-life speaker Scott Klusendorf: Referring to abortion as “killing” is not “violent rhetoric.” It is actually just quoting the abortion industry itself. A few examples he cited:

Dr. Warren Hern, author of Abortion Practice, the medical text that teaches abortion procedures, told a Planned Parenthood conference: “We have reached a point in this particular technology [D&E abortion] where there is no possibility of denying an act of destruction. It is before one’s eyes. The sensations of dismemberment flow through the forceps like an electric current.”

As far back as 1970, a candid editorial in California Medicine, a journal sympathetic to abortion, highlighted the use of deceptive language: “Since the old ethic has not yet been fully displaced it has been necessary to separate the idea of abortion from the idea of killing, which continues to be socially abhorrent. The result has been a curious avoidance of the scientific fact, which everyone really knows, that human life begins at conception and is continuous whether intra-or extra-uterine until death. The very considerable semantic gymnastics which are required to rationalize abortion as anything but taking a human life would be ludicrous if they were not often put forth under socially impeccable auspices. It is suggested that this schizophrenic sort of subterfuge is necessary because while a new ethic is being accepted the old one has not yet been rejected.”

Ronald Dworkin, in his book Life’s Dominion, says abortion deliberately kills a developing embryo and is a choice for death.

Faye Wattleton, former President of Planned Parenthood, told MS Magazine in 1997, “I think we have deluded ourselves into believing that people don't know that abortion is killing. So any pretense that abortion is not killing is a signal of our ambivalence, a signal that we cannot say yes, it kills a fetus” (“Speaking Frankly,” May/June 1997).

And hundreds more examples could be cited. Dr. Utah Landy, in the leaked Planned Parenthood footage, noting that abortion involved “dismembering the fetus” and laughing about when an eyeball dropped on her lap. Dr. Cassig Hammond saying in the same video that he knew one fetus could not have been born alive because “we crushed its skull.” Another abortionist openly admitting that abortion victim photos are real. “I actually have a different response when someone portrays those images,” she said. “Actually that’s my week…some weeks–and that’s what it looks like. Ignoring the fetus is a luxury of activists and advocates. If you’re a provider, you can’t ignore the fetus, right, because the fetus is your marker of how well – how good a job you did…Let’s just give them all the violence, it’s a person, it’s killing. Let’s just give them all that.”

This is violent language, yes. But what pro-lifers are doing is accurately quoting those in the abortion industry. This is not anti-abortion propaganda. It is pro-choice practicality. When pro-lifers are accused of “violent rhetoric” simply for accurately describing—in many cases quoting abortionists—what happens during the abortion procedure, you know that this procedure is truly grotesque.

That’s why the frenzied and hysterical accusations of abortion activists don’t bother me. They can call my colleagues and I “terrorists”—but at the end of the day, it’s simply because they cannot understand those who see violence as the problem, not the solution.