Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Snow Angels

There was a huge snowstorm on Monday night so we cancelled yesterday's clinic. So normally I would say there isn't much to blog about, but I am sitting here in the clinic among the flurry of rebooking and whatnot, and outside my window there are five people standing, staring silently into the clinic. They are silent because they are wearing red tape over their mouths, each piece having "life" written across it. Sigh.

I'm sad that the weird, creepy anti-choice tactics made popular by American fundamentalist Christians have made their way here. If you saw "Jesus Camp", you know exactly what I'm talking about. What makes me especially sad is that it isn't the usual protesters who are out there; it's young people. They look about my age, maybe a couple years younger. I just want to throw open the window and yell "think for yourselves!". But that would be making a huge assumption, because maybe they do think for themselves, and the conclusion they came to is that a great way to spend a Wednesday morning would be to stand in the snow with electrical tape over their mouths, in protest of something that makes no difference whatsoever to their lives.

It takes all kinds, right?

26 comments:

feministincowboyboots said...

The new protestors must have had a "snow day" and decided to come to the clinic. Sometimes American fundamentalist and Catholic schools take busloads of students to protest at abortion clinics. One main result: these kids learn where the abortion clinic is, for their future use. Something like 50% of abortions are sought by women who identify as fundamentalist or Catholic.

Elinor said...

Does anyone understand the significance of the electrical tape over the mouth? They're being silenced with life? Silencing themselves with life? On the Life Diet?

Anonymous said...

I think that Jesus Camp was the scariest movie I saw all year. One of my friends begged us to turn it off just after the part where the children are having their mouths taped shut.

I saw your "visitors" on Wednesday. It looked like they were having a boat-load of fun standing in the snow looking creepy.

Femanon said...

Jesus Camp was absurd. What they demonstrated in that movie was nothing short of child abuse.

Chimera said...

"They are silent because they are wearing red tape over their mouths..."

Ah, blessed silence from the anti-choice crowd! I wonder if there's any real hope of their continued use of this form of protest?

rockanne said...

What does it symbolize anyway.
Is it an actual thing? Or is it like that dude carrying around a statue of the virgin mary in a baby blanket.
I thought for a while, trying to figure THAT one out. The best I came up with was that the virgin was there to SHAME women for having sex (have a baby as punishment!), but the blanket thing still leaves me hangin.
And this tape thing is still perplexing me.
I suppose none of it has to make sense. The old “you can’t reason someone out of something they weren’t reasoned into” understanding. It feels like that really applies here.
I guess the tape is just supposed to be dramatic? And creepy. Intimidating.
The emotional effect their judgmental presence has on the women seems to be their only purpose. The closest I’ve seen to “side walk counselling” is an intimidatingly large man yell “don’t kill your baby!” at a women on her way UP the stairs into the clinic. Effective, sir.

shoe is blue said...

I was schocked to see "Jesus Camp" and the scary part is that it's all true and it's spreading.
Children's minds are being poisoned and that too with enthusiastic parental approval!
One can only imagine the trauma these children will face when they will deal with issues like abortion and alternative sexuality in their own lives.

Feminist Gal said...

Jesus camp was such a crazy movie, and i had to convince the people i was watching it with that it was all true... they thought it was a "mockumentary" of what can happen... no hunnies, it has...

Your blog rocks my world. I am so happy there are people out there that do what you do and advocate for women's lives in the front lines.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it a little narrow minded to assume the protestors are protesting something that doesn't effect their lives? You don't know them or where they come from or what experience brought them there in the first place.

The Pedgehog said...

No. I know it doesn't affect their lives. You know why? Because the only person whose concern abortion is, is the woman making the decision to abort. Period.

Maybe the abortion DEBATE effects your life, as it does mine, but that doesn't give me the right to tell others what to do with their bodies. Maybe abortion has affected some of the protesters personally, but the key word here is PERSONAL. It doesn't matter what kind of effect your abortion had on you, you have no place to make that decision for someone else. Their abortion has nothing to do with your life.

Anonymous said...

"No. I know it doesn't affect their lives. You know why? Because the only person whose concern abortion is, is the woman making the decision to abort"

* Really, so your medical expertise can verify that all aborted babies have no conciousness, and therefore an abortion does not concern the fetus also? Would a baby choose to be aborted?

" but that doesn't give me the right to tell others what to do with their bodies"

* Yet, you advocate letting women choose what to do with another person's body?

"It doesn't matter what kind of effect your abortion had on you, you have no place to make that decision for someone else."

* I suppose we could apply your philosophy with drinking and driving couldn't we? It doesn't matter whether a drunk driver has effected your life by killing somebody close to you, we have NO RIGHT to tell somebody not to drink and drive.

"Their abortion has nothing to do with your life."

* Well, perhaps in your realm of thinking, maybe not. However, the protesters standing outside of the abortion clinic are Roman Catholics. Regardless of your opinion of Roman Catholicism, the 2000 year teaching as upheld by the Papacy and the Catholic Magisterium is that Abortion is contrary to natural and moral law, and the act itself is intrinsically evil. For example, The Didache states "You shall not procure [an] abortion, nor destroy a newborn child" (Didache 2:1–2 [A.D. 70]. Therefore, Roman Catholicism condemns abortion as sinful.

The Catholic Magisterium also teaches that a Catholic can participate in another's sin. The Cathecism of the Catholic Church says in section 1868 "Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them..... by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so". Therefore, regardless of what you think of Catholicism, you would at least have to admit that to a Catholic, "thier abortion" does in fact have consequences that directly affect a Catholic. If a Catholic sits in silence while abortion is being procurred, then they bring the sin of another onto himself.

Anonymous said...

As I showed you in my previous post, a Catholic who stands silent on abortion brings this sin onto themself. Pope John Paul II recently exercised his authority over the Catholic faithful on the issue of Abortion. In Catholicism, when the Bishop of Rome invokes his authority as Successor of Peter and Vicar of Christ, and speaks from the Chair of Peter, his pronouncement is binding on all Catholics throughout the world. In 1995 Pope John Paul II declared that the Church’s teaching on abortion "is unchanged and unchangeable. Therefore, by the authority which Christ conferred upon Peter and his successors . . . I declare that direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, always constitutes a grave moral disorder, since it is the deliberate killing of an innocent human being. This doctrine is based upon the natural law and upon the written word of God, is transmitted by the Church’s tradition and taught by the ordinary and universal magisterium. No circumstance, no purpose, no law whatsoever can ever make licit an act which is intrinsically illicit, since it is contrary to the law of God which is written in every human heart, knowable by reason itself, and proclaimed by the Church" (Evangelium Vitae 62).

So, to remain silent on abortion for a Catholic, is contrary to the Papal authority exercised by Pope John Paul II, and would be a refusal to submit to Papal authority for a Catholic. Hope this clears up misconceptions for you, Pedgehog.

The Pedgehog said...

Anonymous, I'm really not here to debate the moral aspects of abortion with you, since goodness knows I do enough of that on Facebook, and that really isn't what this blog is about. If you are opposed to abortion, fine. I'm sure you're not going to change my mind by arguing about it, first of all; and second, what the protesters do is bullying, no matter what their religion is.

And speaking of religion, I wish you hadn't wasted so much time and energy typing that crap out, since your Catholic arguments mean absolutely zero to me. I am not a Catholic; thus, I don't give a shit what Catholicism says about abortion or protesting abortion.

Happy holidays.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous, I'm really not here to debate the moral aspects of abortion with you, since goodness knows I do enough of that on Facebook"

* That's fine, though I find it rather odd that you wouldn't want to take the opportunity to sway a Pro-Lifer to the Pro-Choice side by giving an account through debate of your reasons for being Pro-Choice.

"I'm sure you're not going to change my mind by arguing about it"

* My purpose wasn't to change your mind.....it was to show you how illogical your accusations towards Pro-Lifers are.

"and second, what the protesters do is bullying, no matter what their religion is."

* Bullying? How exactly are Protesters bullying? Surely such a human rights advocate as yourself is not against peaceful protest?

"And speaking of religion, I wish you hadn't wasted so much time and energy typing that crap out, since your Catholic arguments mean absolutely zero to me."

* I gave you an explanation of how a person getting an abortion directly affects a Catholic.....regardless of what it means to you. You accuse Protesters of being foolish and close-minded, yet will give zero consideration to the principles which put them in the Pro Life movement. You support legalized abortion, which has been legalized for just a few decades, yet will give no consideration to the Papal Magisterium's law on abortion.....a law which has been in place for over 2,000 years. Sounds reasonable, huh?

"I am not a Catholic; thus, I don't give a shit what Catholicism says about abortion or protesting abortion."

* Well, I ask you to take a serious look at the claims of the Catholic Church. Governments, Empires....they all fall.....even as Mighty as the Greek and Roman empires were, they all eventually fell within a few hundred years. However, the throne of the Papacy in Vatican City was established and has been in existence for over 2,000 years now......proving Jesus Christ's words to the Blessed Apostle Peter "I will build my Church upon You.....and the gates of hell will not prevail against it" to be true. The Apostolic See of Rome has never been abolished for over 2,000 years......this alone should be proof of the Catholic Church's divine origin to you.

The Pedgehog said...

No, I'm not interested in swaying you. This blog isn't about the actual abortion debate; it's more about the challenges faced by the patients and escorts, and sometimes issues within the pro-choice movement itself. I don't really care about "swaying" anyone; you can believe whatever you want, I don't really care.

As for the protesters, I would hardly call them "peaceful". And yes, it is bullying; women feel harrassed and intimidated by the presence of protesters. If they didn't set out to pass judgement on women, why not protest at City Hall or the Legislature?

Abortion may have only been legal for a few decades, but women have been dying of it for a lot longer than that, which is why I support it being legal.

Your arguments about Catholicism are completely illogical. It's been around for a long time, so it must be divine? Bullshit. You know what else has been around for longer than Catholicism? Reason. You should try it out.

I don't care what religion people are, nothing makes it okay to bully people.

Anonymous said...

"As for the protesters, I would hardly call them "peaceful"."

* In what manner have they violated the boundaries of peaceful protest?

"If they didn't set out to pass judgement on women, why not protest at City Hall or the Legislature?"

* Because, as I stated earlier, the entire reason for protesting abortion stems from the fact that the Catholic Church regards it as grave moral evil, and by silence and refusal to notify another of the grave moral sin brings the sin itself upon the Catholic. Therefore, it only makes sense to notify the people getting abortions, and in what better location to do it than an abortion clinic, where people get abortions.

"women feel harrassed and intimidated by the presence of protesters"

* Well, some women have also been thankful for the presence of the protesters. If you were standing outside a bar where intoxicated people were entering thier vehicles and driving away, and you began protesting, would you feel bad because a person may feel "intimidated"? Of course not. Lives are at stake. Same thing goes for abortion clinics. Lives are at stake. Or, are you under the belief that an unborn baby is not a human life? If so, please enlighten me as to when a human life begins.....3 months, 6 months, after delivery?

"Abortion may have only been legal for a few decades, but women have been dying of it for a lot longer than that, which is why I support it being legal."

* Here's a great argument. Women have been getting killed while prostituing, so let's make it legal so we can clean the industry up. Same scenario. Your saying that because killing unborn babies happens anyways, and abortions aren't as safe when they aren't legalized, it should be legalized. That's like saying since murders happen anyways, let's provide easier and better access for murderers, so the Murderer doesn't get hurt in the process.

"Your arguments about Catholicism are completely illogical."

* I disagree. Catholicism is completely logical. Perhaps you should dig into St. Thomas Aquinas' "Summa Theologica" to see how logical it truly is.

"It's been around for a long time, so it must be divine? Bullshit. "

* I didn't say that's the only reason....I said it should be a proof. There are several other things I could point out. For example, the Miracle of the Sun in Fatima Portugal in 1917, the Miracle predicted by the 3 Children who recieved it from the Blessed Virgin Mary. 75,000 people witnessed it......many of them were non-Catholics.

Also, can you find any other examples of institutions that have survived the course of history like the Papacy has? Many great governments have risen....yet fallen. The Papacy, which was founded as the Apostolic See in Rome by the man Jesus Christ called Rock (Peter), still stands over 2,000 years and 264 Popes later. You would have to admit this is quite impressive in light of the empires and kingdoms that have risen and fallen.

"You know what else has been around for longer than Catholicism? Reason. You should try it out."

* What is unreasonable about being part of an institution that for 2,000 years has had a Sovereign Pontiff reigning over it, and has continuosly taught the same teachings. Nations and governments rise and fall, but the Papacy continues to stand through the course of history. I think it's a lot more reasonable to follow the dogmas of that institution, an institution who has the promise from it's founder that it shall always stand and is 2,000 years old, than to follow the rulings of a Supreme Court of a nation who is just a mere 140 years old.

The Pedgehog said...

So you admit that it's ok to harrass and initmidate women in order to let them know that according to your religion, what they're doing is a sin. I think that's idiotic. I have the same problem with missionary trips and door-to-door witnessing or whatever the hell it's called. Keep it to yourself thanks. I can tell you right now, protesting only serves to make the pro-life movement look more crazy and fringe than it actually is.

And here's another hint: women are not stupid. They have their own religious/spiritual beliefs and are capable of making their own decisions about their own bodies based on them. They can be moral on their own terms, you don't have to help them.

Oh and yes, I also support the legalization of prostitution. And your murder comparison doesn't fly, since abortion isn't murder. The world is not black and white, you know - every situation is not as clear cut as you seem to think.

I don't feel like arguing about when human life begins, since I already told you I don't want to argue about abortion, and I sure as hell don't want to talk about why Catholicism is soooooo much better than everything else. I think it's bullshit, end of story. And if you think the Supreme Court is so useless, why don't you leave? When you are a citizen of a country you agree to live under its rules. That's how it works. So if you don't want to live by what the Supreme Court says, either try to change it through democratic means, or bugger off. Your choice.

Also, I still don't care how long the papacy has been around - I would much rather live under a government elected by the people, that I had a say in choosing, than some dotty old tyrant with delusions of grandeur.

Anonymous said...

"So you admit that it's ok to harrass and initmidate women"

* I made no such admission. That was your accusation.

"in order to let them know that according to your religion, what they're doing is a sin."

* Not only according to the Catholic religion, but according to natural moral law.

"I think that's idiotic"

* So....I don't.

"I have the same problem with missionary trips and door-to-door witnessing or whatever the hell it's called."

* You poor thing. I think you're getting the Watchtower Tract and Society confused with the Catholic Church.

"Keep it to yourself thanks"

* I'll notify all the local Kindgom Halls for you, Pedgehog.

"I can tell you right now, protesting only serves to make the pro-life movement look more crazy and fringe than it actually is."

* Thanks for telling me, but truth speaks for itself. Aborting a baby = Killing a baby. Human Life doesn't begin at birth, or at 8 months, 6 months, 4 months. It starts at conception. The Medical field asserts this, as does common sense. It's time for society to stand up for those who can't speak on thier own behalf.

"And here's another hint: women are not stupid. They have their own religious/spiritual beliefs and are capable of making their own decisions about their own bodies based on them."

* Thanks for the hint, however, some women do seem incapable of understanding that they do not have control over another human body. Just because a fetus, like an infant, depends on its mother's care, does not give the mother (or father) authority to decide whether it shall live or die.

"They can be moral on their own terms, you don't have to help them."

* Apparently they cannot. Some people seem to have trouble abiding by moral law. Why do we have thousands of legal trials each year if "they can be moral on thier own terms"?

"Oh and yes, I also support the legalization of prostitution."

* Why doesn't this surprise me?

"And your murder comparison doesn't fly, since abortion isn't murder"

* No, a child in a womb being killed isn't murder, but a child outside of a womb is murder according to you. That's as silly as saying that a child being killed in a closet isn't murder, because we can't see it.

"The world is not black and white, you know - every situation is not as clear cut as you seem to think."

* You seem to think I am saying it is? However, Abortion is a very clear cut issue. Abortion = ending a human life. Do you disagree? For what reason is an unborn child less deserving of protection than yourself? What makes its life less valuable than yours?

"I don't feel like arguing about when human life begins, since I already told you I don't want to argue about abortion,"

* Of course you don't, because as soon as we begin arguing about when human life begins, the fallacy of the Pro-Choice position emerges to the surface. Your entire blog is dedicated to mocking and ridiculing protesters of abortion....yet when asked to present your case, you don't want to argue about it!

"I sure as hell don't want to talk about why Catholicism is soooooo much better than everything else."

* Probably not, because I'm willing to bet you wouldn't have a basic understanding of Catholic Dogma.

"I think it's bullshit, end of story"

* You think it's bullshit, but when I ask you a simple question..."Why?"......you can't answer me.

"And if you think the Supreme Court is so useless, why don't you leave? When you are a citizen of a country you agree to live under its rules."

* Woot, woot, woot.....back up there, Silly. I didn't say the Supreme Court of Canada was useless. However, when presented with a moral issue....a moral question which is directly in violation with the the natural moral law, I have the right as a Canadian to stand opposed to the decision of the Supreme Court and voice my disagreement. You must agree.......for I highly suspect your a Feminist, and the Feminist movement has been protesting and trying to change (often successfully, sometimes not) the constitution of Canada in regards to female rights.

"So if you don't want to live by what the Supreme Court says, either try to change it through democratic means, or bugger off."

* And peaceful protest doesn't fit within the scope of "democratic"?

"Also, I still don't care how long the papacy has been around"

* Well you should......since the Pope is Vicarius Christi, regardless of whether you care or not.

"I would much rather live under a government elected by the people,"

* You still could......you just have to adhere to the moral standards as defined by the Apostolic See.

"than some dotty old tyrant with delusions of grandeur."

* Delusions of grandeur? Come on, for 2,000 years now the Apostolic See of Rome has been holding the "Keys of the Kingdom", that is, the Catholic Church. The Holy Roman See is the Vicar of Jesus Christ......I wouldn't consider that being deluded with grandeur. If the claims of the Catholic Church are true, you'd have to admit that the Pope really isn't deluded in anyway.

The Pedgehog said...

1. I don't have to be an expert in Catholic dogma to know that it's bullshit. Don't get me wrong, I don't care what other people believe in; I'm just telling you that I personally don't believe in it. Thus, any arguments you have based on Catholicism mean nothing to me. So stop talking about it.

2. I will gladly argue with you about abortion in another venue, but as I've stated many times, that's not what this blog is for. I'm not declining to counter your arguments because they're so fucking fantastic they've blindsided me with logic; I'm declining because I'm not interested in using my blog to debate the rights and wrongs of abortion.

3. This is my blog, I can do whatever the hell I want with it. If you try to post another comment arguing about abortion, I won't post it, because I've told you multiple times this isn't the venue for it. If you want to continue this discussion through email, or through the numerous Facebook groups that I frequent, that can be arranged.

Anonymous said...

"1. I don't have to be an expert in Catholic dogma to know that it's bullshit. Don't get me wrong, I don't care what other people believe in; I'm just telling you that I personally don't believe in it. Thus, any arguments you have based on Catholicism mean nothing to me. So stop talking about it."

* So, it's bullshit because....let's see....because you don't know anything about it! Great reasoning! I will stop talking about it, as it's hard to have a discussion about something when that person's position is " It's bullshit, because I'm not sure why".

" I will gladly argue with you about abortion in another venue, but as I've stated many times, that's not what this blog is for. I'm not declining to counter your arguments because they're so fucking fantastic they've blindsided me with logic;"

* Geesh Pottymouth....how often are you blindsided by logic? And yes, the debate is on for the time and place I choose.

"This is my blog, I can do whatever the hell I want with it."

* Ok.....who said you couldn't? Sounds like you could turn this previous statement into a Pro-Choice motto...something like "It's my baby, I can do whatever the hell I want with it." What do you think?

"If you try to post another comment arguing about abortion, I won't post it, because I've told you multiple times this isn't the venue for it."

* Well, geez, you didn't have to get all angry about it. A simple "let's debate somewhere else" would have worked.

"If you want to continue this discussion through email, or through the numerous Facebook groups that I frequent, that can be arranged."

* Well, debates through email are kinda pointless, and Facebook is kinda geared more towards teenagers with all of the stupid applications nowadays.....so I'll get back to you on it.

Please, Please, post this one. Come on Pudgehog, just this one more?

Anonymous said...

Feministincowboyboots:

"Something like 50% of abortions are sought by women who identify as fundamentalist or Catholic".

* Unfortunately, what these "Catholics" don't realize, is that once they have an abortion, they are automatically excommunicated from the Catholic Church, whether formally notified or not. They may identify themselves as "Catholic", but unfortunately are no more of a Catholic than I am Chinese.

The Pedgehog said...

"So, it's bullshit because....let's see....because you don't know anything about it! Great reasoning!"

Nope, not what I said. I said I didn't have to be an EXPERT to know it's bullshit. Show me proof of your god, then we can talk.

"Well, geez, you didn't have to get all angry about it. A simple "let's debate somewhere else" would have worked."

In case you don't remember, I have already said that to you, multiple time.


"Well, debates through email are kinda pointless"

Is it pointless because no one else can see your gems of Catholic wisdom?

Papal Bull E. said...

"Nope, not what I said. I said I didn't have to be an EXPERT to know it's bullshit. Show me proof of your god, then we can talk."

* Well, you wouldn't attempt to perform a major surgery without at least studying the procedure, would you? Shouldn't you at least have some knowledge of a subject before you write it off as bullshit? As for proof of our God, how much more do you need? 75,000 people saw a miracle performed that the Blessed Virgin Mary told 3 children would happen. As for physical, tangible proof that you personally can touch and feel....go to any Catholic or Orthodox Church. In there, you'll find the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, not only in a spiritual manner, but also in a physical manner.


"In case you don't remember, I have already said that to you, multiple time."

* I did remember, I just felt like living up to my "ass" reputation.

"Is it pointless because no one else can see your gems of Catholic wisdom?"

* Though that would be one reason, I wanted to make it a more public debate. How about doing it through email, but posting the emails on our blogs?

Anonymous said...

You know, papal bull e., one of the great thing about the papacy having been around providing moral guidance for so long, is that you have such a large selection from which to choose your favourite pope.

Perhaps your favourite is Julius III, who had his 17-year-old homosexual lover made a cardinal. Or Urban VI, who complained that he did not hear enough screaming when the cardinals who had conspired against him were tortured.

Leo V (903)had been pope for only a month before being imprisoned and tortured by one Christophorus, who then enthroned himself. Both men were killed in 904 on the orders of Pope Sergius III (904-911). Sergius later had a son by his teenaged mistress Marozia who became Pope John XI (931-935).

Murder gave way to bribery as a route to the papacy in later centuries; some 40 popes are believed to have bought their jobs. But the lax attitude toward celibacy remained unchanged. In large part this was because the Church was an important route to wealth and power. Sons of influential families were pushed into Church careers much as we might send a kid to MBA school, apparently with similar expectations regarding morals. Noblemen with mistresses saw no reason to adjust their life-styles just because they had taken vows.

Yessir, the Vicar of Christ. Quite an inspiring story how it has lasted so long, thereby proving its divine origin. And from this long line of moral rectitude you draw your righteous opposition to abortion. Bravo.

RandomSurfer said...

Hasn't the Catholic church been accused of complacency with regards to the Holocaust? including the supposed "infallible" pope at the time

Based on the postings of Papel Bull E, I find it very hard to believe that he/she protests these sins with equal vigor to the sins that he/she sees the clinic committing. Why does one "sin" get priority over another? Aren't all aren't all sins equal to god?

Based on Pedgehog's wishes, this is not the forum for these discussions. She has made it clear that she is open to discussion elsewhere, even the semi-public forums that facebook provides. Apparently showing the world your unwavering support for an organization shown to be corrupt over the centuries is important to you.

Anonymous said...

Really.