Violent rhetoric hinders access to abortion services
By Julie Burkhart, opinion contributor
Imagine your morning. You wake up, have a little coffee and get ready for a doctor’s appointment. You get dressed. In fact, you’re having a great day. Everything is going as you planned. You get in your car and make your way to the doctor’s office. Once you arrive, instead of a peaceful setting, aggressive protestors who are yelling at you greet you.
They are standing at the entrance of the parking lot of the doctor’s office, walking up and down the sidewalk, and before you can even pull into the parking lot, you are harassed, intimidated and shamed for needing health care. These protestors, unfortunately, are a fixture at this health care facility; standing outside, degrading you without any knowledge of who you are or your life circumstances.
She Wanted An Abortion. Feds Say Her Ex Threatened to Bomb the Clinic.
Court documents show a South Carolina man has been hit with federal charges for interfering with reproductive health care.
by Marie Solis
Oct 7 2019
A South Carolina man named Rodney Allen has been arrested and charged with calling in a fake bomb threat to a Jacksonville, Florida, health clinic in order to prevent a woman he was formerly in a relationship with from obtaining an abortion.
According to a sworn affidavit submitted in federal court last month by FBI Special Agent Robert W. Blythe, these events took place after Allen allegedly sexually assaulted the woman—identified in the affidavit only as A.S.—which resulted in her becoming pregnant. A.S. also alleged that Allen was physically abusive, and had threatened to kill multiple members of her family. The case, USA v Allen, is still in process in a Florida district court. (Blythe did not respond to VICE’s request for comment.)
Violence against abortion clinics hit a record high last year. Doctors say it's getting worse.
By Kate Smith
Updated on: September 17, 2019
For one of the last abortion doctors in Missouri, harassment, stalking and death threats are a part of regular life. But this year, it's been worse than ever.
Colleen McNicholas, the chief medical officer at Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, is one of many providers who told CBS News they've seen an uptick in violence this year, both against themselves and their clinics. They say the increased harassment has coincided with newly enacted state laws restricting legal abortion and polarizing rhetoric surrounding the procedure.
A man threatened to “slaughter” abortion doctors. It’s part of a disturbing trend.
Advocates say Trump’s rhetoric is helping fuel a spike in threats against abortion clinics nationwide.
By Anna North Aug 21, 2019
One man was charged with threatening to “slaughter and murder” doctors and patients at an abortion clinic in Chicago. Another was arrested in connection with threats against Planned Parenthood and federal agents. A third vandalized a Planned Parenthood office in Pennsylvania, painting a Bible verse in red on a wall.
All this happened in the past month alone. It’s part of what doctors and reproductive rights groups say is a spike in harassment and threats against abortion providers. According to a report by the National Abortion Federation, for example, providers reported 21,252 incidents of online harassment in 2018, compared with 15,773 in 2017.
Tired of hiding: five doctors who provide abortions come out
They’re fearless, defiant, and increasingly angry at the mounting threats in the US to reproductive rights. Here, they reveal why the reasons why they choose to go public
by Carey Dunne
Tue 6 Aug 2019
On a frigid evening in January, Dr Katie McHugh welcomed 20 guests into her Indianapolis home and prepared to tell them a secret she had kept for seven years. They had come for a Planned Parenthood fundraiser party; among them were her father and two sisters. As they gathered in her living room, sipping wine, McHugh’s hands shook.
“I was quite nervous, but I wanted to get my secret out as soon as I could,” she says. “I said, ‘Welcome. I’m glad you’re all here. I’m Katie McHugh. I’m an OB-GYN here in Indianapolis, and I’m also an abortion provider.’ My father visibly flinched. Then I stopped to take a breath, and everyone applauded, including my family.
As Trump Fans the Flames of Anti-Abortion Rhetoric, Kansas Offers a Cautionary Tale
August 2 2019
A sheriff’s deputy was waiting in his car along Interstate 35 just outside Kansas City, Kansas, on the afternoon of May 31, 2009, when the powder-blue Ford Taurus rolled by.
The deputy pulled out behind the car and followed it. He took up two lanes and put on his hazards so no one would try to pass as he called for backup. Minutes later, a four-car posse pulled the Taurus over. Inside was 51-year-old Scott Roeder. He got out of the car with his hands raised. There was blood on his pants and one of his shoes.
On the frontline: 12 hours in a besieged abortion clinic
Rachel is a doctor who provides abortions. She commutes 10 hours each way to work in an area of Alabama that would otherwise not provide the procedure at all
by Vegas Tenold and Glenna Gordon in Montgomery, Alabama
Wed 24 Jul 2019
Rachel hunches down in the seat of a Chevrolet rental, adjusting her disguise in the mirror. She pulls down a fedora to partly cover her face, but isn’t convinced it offers enough cover. She puts on a pair of oversize sunglasses.
While the combination conceals her face, it is also not an inconspicuous sight in the pre-dawn Friday hours in a run-down neighborhood in Montgomery, Alabama.
Man sentenced to 12 years for killing his girlfriend for getting an abortion
11 June 2019
By Nico Gous
The Polokwane High Court on Monday sentenced 39-year-old Joseph Mafifi to 12 years in prison for killing his girlfriend in 2018.
Officers at Tom Burke police station, outside Lephalale, received a tip-off on March 18 last year that a woman was being stabbed on a farm near Swartwater.
10 years after abortion doctor George Tiller's murder, advocates fear violent rhetoric
Alia E. Dastagir, USA TODAY
Published May 31, 2019
Ten years ago today, George Tiller, a Kansas abortion doctor, was attending Sunday service at his Wichita church when he was fatally shot by an anti-abortion extremist.
"However profound our differences as Americans over difficult issues such as abortion, they cannot be resolved by heinous acts of violence," President Barack Obama said in a statement after his death.
Ten years after abortion doctor's murder, one woman carries the fight for reproductive rights
In 2009, George Tiller was shot dead in Kansas. Today, as America’s discord over abortion reaches fever pitch, Julie Burkhart is keeping the flame alive
Fri 31 May 2019
Julie Burkhart remembers all too vividly the morning of 31 May 2009. It was a Sunday and she was in a meeting in Washington DC when, shortly after 10am, her phone started buzzing incessantly with calls from her home town of Wichita, Kansas.
When she got through to one of her co-workers she thought at first he was making a surreal joke. George Tiller, her mentor with whom she had worked side-by-side for the past eight years at the frontlines of America’s abortion wars, had been accosted at Sunday service in his Wichita church and shot dead.