Orlando “Siege” Fails to Draw Protesters, Yet Stalking Continues

A planned siege of seven Orlando-area abortion clinics by Operation Rescue/Operation Save America (OR/OSA) began this Saturday, but failed to draw the “hundreds” of anti-abortion protesters that organizers had called for. Only an estimated 40 or so individuals took part in anti-abortion protests Saturday, Sunday and Monday at the clinics–and that number included children brought along by their parents.

OR/OSA members focused on four clinics, harassing patients and staff as they entered and exited the office. The group also staged a protest outside of a local Unitarian Universalist church.

Despite their small numbers, the protesters continued the longtime OR/OSA strategy of stalking clinic physicians and their associates in their private homes. Two doctors’ homes were leafleted, and a close associate of one of the targeted physicians reports that a mob of protesters showed up at her house. She says they entered her gated driveway, knocked on her front door, climbed over a fence into her backyard and snapped photos of her family’s vehicles.

It’s not hard to guess how protesters found the doctor’s homes. A website linked as a “resource” by OR/OSA, Forerunner.com, administered by Jay Rogers, purports to list the office and residential addresses of over 70 Florida abortion providers, sometimes with photos of the houses from Google Maps (though much of the information is inaccurate). The targeted Orlando doctors were listed on the site. In the past, such information has been repeatedly used to illegally stalk, intimidate and harass physicians.

Despite a conviction two weeks ago in Charlotte, N.C., of stalking abortion doctors at their homes, OR/OSA leader Flip Benham was spotted at the protests. With him was fellow extremist James Patrick Johnston, who was arrested at an OR/OSA national event in Jackson, Miss., five years ago. Johnston has posted articles supporting violence against abortion providers on the website of the domestic terrorist group Army of God, which advocates the “justifiable homicide” of abortion providers. The Army of God has dubbed Johnston a “Hero of the Faith”–an “honor” the group usually bestows on murderers of abortion doctors.

The Feminist Majority Foundation is working with local law enforcement to protect Orlando clinics and physicians from threats of violence. Says FMF national organizer Jacqueline Sun, one of the Orlando clinic defenders:

These clinics are staying open and women are continuing to receive reproductive health care they deserve–thanks to our efforts, the support of the Orlando pro-choice community and the assistance of the Orlando Police Department.

Photo from Flickr user marklyon under Creative Commons 2.0.

Comments

  1. yoteech says:

    If you think abortion is wrong, don’t have one. It is certainly WRONG to give more rights to a fraction of a milliliter of fluid with chemicals (fertilized egg) than to a walking, talking conscious human woman.

  2. yoteech says:

    Live begins at birth – with the first inhalation and conscious brain activity – not at conception! The pope’s pronouncement does not take the place of biological science.

  3. yoteech says:

    Life…begins at birth.

  4. amazonfeet says:

    Benham has ties via Facebook with the extremist so-called “pastor” who runs the “Army of God” website. That “pastor” has, on HIS Facebook, every convicted anti choice terrorist currently serving time, and the one man who was executed by the State of Florida. There will never be any way to convince me that these people are anything else but terrorists. Freedom of speech ends when it infringes on someone else’s right to medical/healthcare or safety. These people recognize no boundaries but the arbitrary ones they have set up. Hence all the doctor stalking. The criminal justice and law enforcement communities need to start following them closely, and I think it may be close to time to pull some people off the streets. How many more good people are we going to have to lose before the law steps in and says enough?

    Thank you for keeping us up with what’s been going on on the blog. The media here has not been covering this situation, which is probably a good thing. They sure must be disappointed that no cameras but their own are out there. They call themselves “gentle Christians”. They were not gentle on Sunday morning as we were arriving at church, and the stalking and yelling and gory pictures are not gentle at all. All the lying and embellishment on their accounts of their exploits on the Forerunner blog are not gentle. So much for “the truth”. It is what THEY say it is. And the sheep follow obediently behind….

  5. It’s important to get your facts straight, so people will take your thoughts seriously. According to the medical profession, a newly ovulated egg is fertilized when a sperm swims up the fallopian tube and successfully attaches to it, somewhere near the end of the tube. Then the fertilized egg (ovum) must successfully implant itself in the endometium or lining of the uterus, usually in the top third. At the point that it’s successfully implanted and begins to grow, “conception” has taken place.

    Many fertilized eggs fail to implant themselves for the process of reproduction to begin, and thus are expelled in the normal menstrual flow. Sometimes there are failures in the development of the fetus, which can result in an early rejection of the pregnancy and the body expels it. Almost all sexually active women have undergone spontaneous abortions of this sort. And believe you me, we do not hold funerals every time a sexually active woman has a menstrual cycle. This is the miracle of the development of human life and it’s pretty awesome, but God does not wave a wand during the process. Nature makes many mistakes along the way.

    Magical thinking and biblical literalists should not be allowed to construct public policy for women.

    • Frances in California says:

      Thanks, Rea: one might add – “and Guys, who will never be pregnant, also should not be allowed to construct public policy for women.”

  6. These articles are interesting to see how the pro-abortion rights advocates think. They’ll accuse pro-life evangelsits of misinformation, but then they will distort the facts constantly. They begin by saying that only 40 people showed up for the OSA event on Saturday morning (it didn’t being until Saturday night!) and try to tie OSA leaders to violent groups even while every participant is required to sign an oath on non-violence. They don’t mention a thing about abortionist James Pendergraft’s trial, which occurred in Orlando the same week. Yet this is a great example of the type of abuse against women that MS. magazine and FMF supposedly crusade against — not to mention the real documented violence and abuse against women and born children in Pendergraft’s abortion mills. It’s interesting to see what the pro-aborts think about pro-life evangelists and the names they mention when they do mention names.

    • Frances in California says:

      Sorry, Jay: You will never know what giving birth is like. You will never know what a miscarriage is like. I pity you that you can’t really own any part of the process. Your compassion is much better spent on the already born.

  7. Peggy Reed says:

    I hear so many pro choice men and women say that it is not a baby until it is born or as the above comments, Life begins at birth.

    I wonder if there are any pregnant women who want to be pregnant would say, it is not life(or a baby) until birth. I think they would cherish every development of that baby as being a live baby. They would know there is life growing in their body. The baby that women discard is part of their life and their children’s siblings they will never know. I wonder if a child that is born would think, “mommy wanted me but she didn’t want my brother or sister.”

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