Monday, November 30, 2015

PCG's Talk of "Aborted Baby Body Parts" and Anti-Abortion Violence

In the October 2015 issue of PCG's recruitment magazine, The Philadelphia Trumpet, PCG's writers included an article by Dennis Leap ("Trafficking Aborted Baby Body Parts") that cited certain videos produced by an anti-abortion, pro-life organization named the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) that condemned Planned Parenthood as supposedly selling body parts of aborted fetuses. The article is accompanied with an infographic entitled "For Sale: Aborted Fetal Parts."

In the article Leap cites Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards talking about the problem of those who use violence and terrorism to oppose abortion. Leap seems to think such talk is just a PR trick to distract people from opposing abortion.
In an interview with ABC News, Richards blasted the CMP videos, calling them “highly selectively edited” videos released by “militant anti-abortion activists.” Richards also told host George Stephanopoulos that the videos “are part of the most militant anti-abortion movement that has been behind the bombing of clinics, the murder of doctors in their homes and in their churches, and that’s what actually needs to be looked at.”

The effort to demonize the CMP deflected people’s attention off Planned Parenthood’s fetal body parts distribution practices. On July 28, Planned Parenthood hired the high-profile Washington, D.C., public relations firm SKDKnickerbocker as it scrambled to deal with the ongoing scandal and CMP’s vow to release a total of 12 videos. SKDKnickerbocker immediately went to work to encourage journalists not to cover the story. (Dennis Leap, Trafficking Aborted Baby Body Parts, October 2015.)
It appears Richards was right to warn people of this problem. It is not a PR trick if it happens to be true. Leap was wrong to ignore her warning.

Last Friday some terrorist attacked a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado Springs murdering three innocent people and wounding nine.

Here are the three beautiful and precious people who were murdered.
One police officer and two civilians were killed in the shootings. The officer was Garrett Swasey, a father of two and a church pastor. The civilians were Jennifer Markovsky and Ke’Arre Stewart. Markovsky was a mother of two at the clinic to support a friend and Stewart was a father of two and an Iraq veteran. Nine others were wounded. (Daily Kos.)
It has been reported that the arrested suspect mumbled something about "baby parts".
In one statement, made after the suspect was taken in for questioning, [the suspect] said "no more baby parts" in reference to Planned Parenthood, two law enforcement sources with knowledge of the case told NBC News.

But the sources stressed that [the suspect] said many things to law enforcement and the extent to which the "baby parts" remark played into any decision to target the Planned Parenthood office was not yet clear. He also mentioned President Barack Obama in statements. (NBC News.)
The title of Dennis Leap's article is "Trafficking Aborted Baby Body Parts". The infographic is entitled "For Sale: Aborted Fetal Parts". Even if the perpetrator had nothing to do with PCG this is still very disturbing.

Be careful PCG. Some extremists do not know how to read between the lines and fail to imagine how such emotive talk might be used to serve other issues beneath the surface and just lash out instead.

Furthermore, even though CMP condemned the terrorist attack, it appears that there are worrying things about the organization that produced these videos condemning Planned Parenthood. One of the board members of CMP once called the murder of abortionists "justifiable defensive action".
The misleadingly named "Center for Medical Progress", the group that produced the fraudulent Planned Parenthood tapes currently being cited by Republicans in their attacks on the group, includes Operation Rescue head Troy Newman as one of its only three listed board members. That the organization would share such remarkably close ties to the far-far-right Operation Rescue is hardly a coincidence, as Newman encourages activists to engage in so-called "sting" operations against healthcare providers. Newman, however, is more well-known for his public declarations that the murder of American abortion providers should legally be considered "justifiable defensive action" to "save the lives of the pre-born babies". Newman is also the author of a tract titled Their Blood Cries Out, a manifesto in which he explicitly called for the execution of abortion providers. (Daily Kos.)
Leap never talked about that in the article.

Well if Planned Parenthood is doing something wrong someone should investigate.

Turns out there have now been multiple investigations by this point and they found nothing illegal. Regardless of what thinks of abortion one still has to break the law before the authorities can prosecute. That does not appear to have occurred.
This is the fifth incidence of violence at a Planned Parenthood clinic since the videos have been released. Planned Parenthood has denied the charges suggested in the video and said that it only donates the tissue when patients request it and does not make a profit. Making a profit off of the sale of fetal tissue in the United States is illegal, and investigations of Planned Parenthood at the state and federal level have found no wrongdoing. (Huffington Post.)
Turns out this deadly shooting was not the only such incident of violence against Planned Parenthood.
On Friday, September 4, a Planned Parenthood in Pullman, Washington, was set on fire a few hours before dawn; security footage shows a "flammable object" being thrown through the clinic window. Twenty-eight days later, a clinic in Thousand Oaks, California, was firebombed in an almost identical manner. In mid-July, there was an attempted arson at an abortion provider in Aurora, Illinois, and on August 1, there was a car fire outside of a Planned Parenthood construction site in New Orleans. But most national media outlets didn't report on the attacks, and even fewer still connected them. (Vice News.)
Alas, such anti-abortion violence is not a new thing. Back in 1994 Stephen King published a novel, Insomnia, and a major plot point of that novel is extremism regarding abortion. One of the opening scenes of the novel features a character making accusations that aborted fetuses are being turned into fertilizer (if memory serves correctly). Imagining what happens to aborted fetuses is nothing new among those who oppose abortion.

Are PCG members aware that these things are happening? These events are not reported by PCG to my knowledge.

As far as I know PCG has still said nothing about this mass shooting.

PCG are far to the right in regards to politics. They live in an information bubble that leans so far to the right they fail to see how they might associate themselves with movements that they might be better off staying away from. One should educate oneself about the problems of extremism in order to avoid such problems of association.

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