Thursday, September 19, 2013

Just Don't Look!...?

Maybe it's because I'm on my period (TMI alert, etc. etc. - honestly if you read this blog at all you know a lot more than that about my vagina), but when I read this article about the Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform posting a huge exploding fetus banner across an overpass in Hamilton I got so angry I didn't know what to do with myself.

Generally, at this point in my journey as an activist I don't get super angry about this stuff - more of a mild, disappointed contempt. I'm not as young as I was (although I would like to think I remain just as idealistic). But yeah, I don't know, these CCBR people really get my dander up.

I almost came on here and wrote an angry screed (don't you love the word screed?) about it but then I got myself into a thought tangle about how much energy one should really spend getting worked up - especially publicly - about these idiots. It's that eternal debate about giving the anti-choicers attention and exposing their bullshit as harmful and terrible, versus not lending them legitimacy by paying attention. I've never really taken a conclusive side and have, in fact, gone back and forth about it more than any other thing in my activist worldview. Starting this blog was, arguably, a huge exercise in giving the antis attention, and they did delight in it, but at the same time I think it has been an immensely positive thing in a country where apparently NO ONE knows what's happening with abortion and sexual health access in New Brunswick. I thought at the time, and I still believe, that giving attention to the situation was worth giving publicity to the protesters.

But not every situation is the same. The CCBR is slick in their own way - they are very different than the ragtag group of elderly weirdos that protest at the Fredericton Morgentaler Clinic. The CCBR thrives on publicity - any publicity - and they are not at all interested in being nice. They are willing to alienate their own potential supporters - people who openly identify as pro-life, anti-abortion - in order to get press hits with their big, disgusting stunts. They know exactly what they are doing, and I can't help but feel that even writing anything about them is playing right into their hands.

But shit, man, you can't just put disgusting banners on the overpass. It's actually causing traffic accidents. In the article the police give some bullshit excuse about not taking sides - completely missing the point that it's not the group's position people object to, it's the fact that their banner is distracting people to the point that they are crashing their fucking cars. Come on.

So, you know, fuck you Hamilton cops. And fuck you CCBR, obviously.

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