USA – Abortion clinics on edge after woman who shot Kansas doctor is released from prison

Abortion clinics on edge after woman who shot Kansas doctor is released from prison

By Judy L. Thomas
November 07, 2018

Abortion clinics across the country were taking extra precautions Wednesday after the anti-abortion activist who shot Wichita physician George Tiller in 1993 and committed a string of clinic attacks in several states was released from prison.

Rachelle “Shelley” Shannon, the Oregon woman whose actions once triggered a federal investigation into the possible existence of a national conspiracy of anti-abortion terrorists, had been living in a halfway house in Portland, Ore., since May. She has spent 25 years in custody.


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Abortion-seekers find support in New Mexico interfaith group

Abortion-seekers find support in New Mexico interfaith group

By Sarah Halasz Graham
Nov 3, 2018

She arrived under cover of darkness, alone, a stranger in an unfamiliar city.

In July 2014, El Paso resident Kasey Sanchez was 27 years old — and 27 weeks pregnant. In the seven weeks since she’d learned she was expecting, Sanchez had told no one, except a few muted voices on the phone — voices of people who promised to help.


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USA – Anti-Abortion Activists Tried To Shut Him Down. One Year Later, His Clinic Is Thriving.

Anti-Abortion Activists Tried To Shut Him Down. One Year Later, His Clinic Is Thriving.
Dr. LeRoy Carhart is one of the last providers in the country who perform later abortions.

By Catherine Pearson, HuffPost US
Oct 30, 2018

Last summer, the staff at Germantown Reproductive Health Service in Maryland, one of three remaining clinics in the U.S. where women were able to get third-trimester abortions, got surprising news.

Todd Stave, the owner of the clinic — who inherited it along with another facility from his OB-GYN father — had sold it. Although Stave had previously reassured clinic staff he would give them plenty of notice before a sale, staffers were told they would have to stop seeing patients the following week.


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USA – Picoult takes on the abortion debate in timely new novel

Picoult takes on the abortion debate in timely new novel
Fiction: A Spark of Light, Jodi Picoult, Hodder & Stoughton, hardback, 368 pages, €20.39

October 28 2018

The timing of Jodi Picoult's latest novel couldn't be more apt. A Spark of Light chronicles a deadly shooting and hostage-taking in a women's health clinic at a point when, in America, Roe v Wade is at risk of being overturned as the Supreme Court moves decidedly to the right, following the controversial confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, and in Ireland, a historic referendum prompted heated debates over abortion and the eventual vote to repeal the eighth amendment.

Picoult describes her work as "ethical or moral fiction", tackling contentious issues including rape, school shootings, religious identity, euthanasia and white supremacists. As well as the abortion debate, A Spark of Light explores post-traumatic stress disorder in veterans, racism and gun control ("the waiting period to get an abortion was longer than the waiting period to get a gun", she observes pointedly).


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USA – The Future Abortionists of America

The Future Abortionists of America
Abortions are simple procedures, yet fewer than 0.2% of U.S. doctors perform them. Meet the new guard trying to improve access for all.

Malcolm Harris
Sep 4, 2018

A sign in the lobby of the Philadelphia hotel read:

Please enjoy your day!

Meanwhile, in the ballroom upstairs, a significant portion of America’s current and future abortion providers were eating breakfast. The fake-out sign was one of multiple security measures, but the atmosphere at the Medical Students for Choice (MSFC) national conference still hummed with energy. Over the course of a day and a half, 450-plus medical students tried to absorb as much information as possible about providing abortions, information that — depending on where they go to school — can be extremely difficult to get. The vast majority of attendees were women in their early twenties. When the organization’s executive director Lois Backus announced that one of the two men’s rooms would defect for the weekend, an involuntary cheer passed through the audience, followed by laughter.


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USA – Woman who shot Wichita abortion doctor, bombed clinics in 1990s released from prison

Woman who shot Wichita abortion doctor, bombed clinics in 1990s released from prison

By Judy L. Thomas
May 22, 2018

The Oregon woman who shot and wounded a Wichita abortion doctor 25 years ago and firebombed several clinics in three states has been released from federal prison, causing concern among clinic operators who worry her release could spark a new wave of attacks.

Rachelle "Shelley" Shannon, whose actions triggered a federal investigation into the possible existence of a nationwide conspiracy of anti-abortion terrorists intent on shutting down abortion clinics, left the Waseca Federal Correctional Facility in Minnesota on Monday and was being transported by bus to Portland, where she will be staying in a halfway house, according to her friends.


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USA: The Murderer Who Started a Movement

The Murderer Who Started a Movement
Michael Frederick Griffin’s killing of Dr. David Gunn ignited a war on abortion providers. He could soon be a free man.

By Dahlia Lithwick
Oct. 31, 2017

Dr. David Gunn was 47 years old when he was gunned down in 1993 during an abortion protest outside his clinic in Pensacola, Florida. Today we think of this as the first targeted killing of an abortion doctor in America—the murder that led to passage of the FACE Act, which made it a federal crime to block access to clinics. It also established the battle lines in an ever more violent and nihilistic war against abortion providers, one that has led to the murders of nearly a dozen more people in the decades since.

Michael Frederick Griffin reportedly shouted “Don’t kill any more babies” just before putting three bullets in Gunn’s back. While the doctor bled to death, Griffin calmly surrendered to the police, saying, “I just shot someone.” Those attending the protest with Griffin showed no alarm at the shooting, a witness told the Washington Post’s William Booth: “It looked like they were just happy.”

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U.S.: Anti-Choice Legal Attacks Make It Harder to Access Clinics Themselves

Anti-Choice Legal Attacks Make It Harder to Access Clinics Themselves

Jul 11, 2017, 2:19pm Jessica Mason Pieklo

In addition to helping pass abortion restrictions at the state level, anti-choice activists are challenging those laws that do protect clinics and patients.

Restrictions on abortion rights and access are not limited to the variety pack of legislation advanced by anti-choice lawmakers year after year. In their attempts to obstruct patient access to providers and clinics, the anti-choice movement has gone on the offense at the local and state level. Not only do clinics often have to adhere to arbitrary standards primarily enacted to make it more difficult to provide care; the laws set up to protect their care, and their patients, are under attack.

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US: Man who killed abortion doctor gets more lenient sentence

by Roxana Hegeman, The Associated Press
Posted Nov 23, 2016

WICHITA, Kan. – The man who seven years ago ambushed and fatally shot one of the few U.S. doctors performing late-term abortions was given a more lenient sentence Wednesday of at least 25 years in prison before becoming eligible for parole.

At a surprise resentencing hearing, prosecutors withdrew their request that Scott Roeder serve at least 50 years before parole eligibility. Roeder also was sentenced to an additional two years for aggravated assault for threatening two church ushers as he fled.

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Source: Associated Press, 1310 News

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U.S.: Being a doctor who performs abortions means you always fear your life is in danger

Threats and violence are no way to disagree

By Diane J. Horvath-Cosper October 29, 2015
Diane J. Horvath-Cosper is a board-certified obstetrician-gynecologist and a family planning fellow in Washington, D.C.

The Planned Parenthood office in Thousand Oaks, Calif., one of several clinics that perform abortions where there has been fires or vandalism recently. (Rob Varela/The Ventura County Star via AP)

Every few months, I do an Internet search for my name, as recommended by a media-savvy colleague. In the past I’ve found myself in all the predictable places — among a list of doctors who graduated from my residency program, on my employer’s Web site, in various social-media posts. But in the stillness of a warm evening this past August, after putting my daughter to bed, I found myself in a new and terrifying place: an anti-choice Web site that claims I am part of an “abortion cartel.” In addition to my office address and links to find my medical license numbers, it features several photos of me. In one of the photos, taken from social media, I’m holding my then-15-month-old daughter.

Though the site claims to be “informational” in nature, the real purpose is clear. There is no better way to intimidate and incite fear than to target a family member, especially a child. The message is unambiguous: I’m being watched, and so is my daughter.

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Source: Washington Post

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