Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Escort Musings

Another big snowstorm this week! It was a bit touch an go this morning, but luckily everyone made it okay and we only had one no show. The weather was miserable, of course, and there was snow everywhere. I will be glad when winter is over.

There were no protesters for the majority of the morning. I was a tiny bit disappointed as we had a new escort today, JL, and I wanted him to see what goes on each week. But it's better for the patients this way. The escorts stuck around and made the best of it; TH even shovelled the walkway. What heroes they all are. Much better than those lazy protesters.

Said protesters did make an appearance at the very end of the late shift, just as I was about to tell the escorts to go home. There were only two of them. I'm not sure why they even bothered coming out that late; not that they knew, but there was only one patient left, and that was only because she was running late. She came in the back, and they didn't even see her. So pointless. But I guess they feel it's better late than never.

I'm really heartened by the amount of interest that's been shown in volunteering lately. I've had friends who I would have thought would have no interest at all, contact me to ask when they can start. I had an eager young man call the clinic yesterday to ask if there was any volunteering he and a friend could do. And I've started half a dozen new people in the last two months. It's exciting to see people in my generation excited about being pro-choice.

One thing I was thinking about today when JL started was the question of gender when it comes to the escorts. Two people remarked on how great it was that we had another guy, since we only have one regular male escort (JF). I wonder why it is that people are so eager to see a gender balance outside, but when it comes to being inside the clinic the patients seem very comfortable with an all-female staff. I guess the protesters are threatening, and men are stereotypically larger and stronger, and so they make people feel more safe. I wonder if that's all there is to it.

This Saturday the Bound4Life group (the people who wear red tape over their mouths) are going to be protesting at the clinic. I think I will go check it out and take some pictures. A counter-protest has been suggested but I'm not sure how I feel about that at the moment. We'll see.

1 comment:

Elinor said...

I wonder if it's also just nice to have evidence that there are men who care about women's rights and who are willing to show their support publicly? The women who volunteer have an extremely personal stake in reproductive rights, and my observation is that men often regard those rights in a sort of abstracted way and don't regard them as important. This makes the presence of male escorts really refreshing -- they get it.