Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Back in Blue

That's right, I was back outside this week! Much as I like working reception, I love love love escorting and it was good to have people to chat to during the slow periods. And of course I was thrilled to see my old protesting friends - Father Grim was out, and Mad Thad, and Earpiece Charlie, but sadly no Holy Ghost or Crazy Legs.

So it's probably worth mentioning that while I do volunteer at the clinic on Tuesday mornings, I also work there part-time during the week. On Monday I was there working and discovered (props to RS for pointing this out) that Peter Ryan and Mad Thad were outside praying. Obviously since the "women's care centre" is right next door to the clinic, they could really be out praying at us any time, but as far as I know this is a recent development. They were out on the ramp side of the clinic, clearly visible from SL's office window, with a waist-high Virgin Mary statue between them. They were just standing there, praying. Weeeeiiiiirrrrd. Perhaps they are praying for our souls. Or for all the aborted babiezz. Hard to say. Just another plateau of madness, I suppose.

Anyway, back to Tuesday. We had a pretty busy day, especially out back, but thankfully most of the patients were in good spirits. The protesters stayed mostly to themselves, although Mr. Mumbles had some prayers he felt the need to mumble aggressively. A woman getting out of her car in the parking garage called across to the protesters "thank you for protesting!". That made me a little sad; she might as well say "thank you for deciding for me what I can do with my body. I would never be able to make up my mind; I'm just a girl!". Luckily, shortly afterwards a different woman drove by blaring her horn and giving the protesters the finger. It all evens out.

I wish I had more to write about this week, but without the wonderful fashion statements/hijinks of Crazy Legs, it can get pretty slow. Hopefully she will be back in action next time.


Anonymous said...

Thank God.Judgeing from your lates blog it appears you are willing to admit that real Babies are being Killed.Admitting that fact and killing them anyway is very troubling indeed.But at least it's a step in the right direction.
Earpiece Charlie

Anonymous said...

P.S. Hope your not afraid to approve the comment. Earpiece Charlie

The Pedgehog said...

Oh, Charlie. You are as humourless as you look, and thus didn't catch that I was making fun of you (or rather, anti-choicers in general) when I made that comment about babies. That's why I put the "z" on the end. It was kind of an internet joke, I guess, so you can be forgiven for not getting it.

I especially enjoyed the second, taunting comment. The only reason I would not post your comment would be the horrendous spelling and grammar, but I like to let that speak for itself.

Thanks for stopping by! :)

Anonymous said...

Joke or not you mentioned that dreaded B word. By the way I don't pride myself in my ability to use proper grammer or correct spelling.Could care less.Didn't think the issue had anything to do with either.The one thing I do take pride in is my commitment to stand up for the right's of the innocent those Babiezz.

Amy O said...

I love it. It's blog warz 2007.

E said...

hey, do you think Earpiece Charlie is the one who slept through Grade 8 biology and therefore thought women only get pregnant by accident when we are "permisquis"? The spelling style is kind of the same.

E said...

"The one thing I do take pride in is my commitment to stand up for the right's of the innocent those Babiezz."

Oh, you mean your commitment to harassing and intimidating women in a way that hasn't actually stopped one single abortion at the clinic? Yeah, I can see why you'd be proud of that.

But hey, dude, keep parading around with your little sign, like that demonstrates something besides your abundant free time and your contempt for women. Is it always disco you listen to on your earphones, or does it change from week to week?

The Pedgehog said...

Ha ha probably. Although since most of the people who protest are old-timers, I like to think that they just didn't learn biology when they were in school. Or maybe they just didn't learn women's anatomy or anything scandalous like that.

I also enjoy that Earpiece Charlie thinks it is a great leap forward for the anti-choice cause when I mention babies. Babies babies babies. Hehehe. Like he thinks people who work at the clinic talk in hushed tones and never mention the "b" word. Guess what Charlie? Pro-choicers have the cognitive faculties to separate born babies from fetuses. We are that clever. What's your excuse?

Also, I'm glad you're more proud of your accomplishments in bullying women than you are about expressing yourself clearly. That speaks volumes about you as a person.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ladies. Bring on the insults I'am a big boy I can take it.
To elinor. If grade 8 biology is where you learned that preborns are not Babies, Person's or Human I couldn't be happier that I slept through those classes.Also if you can introduce one woman that I personally intimidated or harassed.Make it happend.

Anonymous said...

To the pedgehog. Are they Babies or not.Let us in on the big secret.If the answer is not than I would definitlr have to question your cognitive faculties.If it looks like a duck quacks like a duck then it is a duck. No maybe it's a dog, a cat a bird or maybe even a plane but it can't be a duck

The Pedgehog said...

Fetus =/= baby. That's the "big secret".

As to the women you intimidated and harrassed, sorry, we can't introduce you to anyone because that would be a violation of the right to privacy. However, as someone who works inside as well as outside of the clinic, I can tell you that many women feel intimidated, harrassed and threatened by your presence and the presence of the other protesters. As you said, you are a big boy, and it's not pleasant to see a scary-looking guy like yourself with a big sign, glaring at people.

Do you think that women like walking by you as they try to access LEGAL MEDICAL SERVICES? Do you think they like being overtly judged by strangers? Surprise, women are people, and they can make their own decisions without help from you and your idiotic signs.

Maybe if you could spend a day as the counsellor in our clinic you would realize how frustrating it is to have to spend so much of your limited time with each woman talking about the protesters and trying to calm them down instead of spending that time helping them make good decisions on relationships and birth control for the future. But I imagine that's beyond your grasp, since as a privileged white male you don't spend a lot of time thinking about people who have it worse off than you do. Except, of course, the precious "preborns".

So yeah, women do feel intimidated and harrassed by you. Congratulations it must feel awesome to be such a successful bully.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, if my size and appearance is intimidating to others, I don't mean it to be.Have I ever threatened or intimidated you?If not, why would I use these tactics on the women entering the clinic and might I add young girls.Do you think I don't have compassion for these women.I know they are under a lot of stress,pressure to go through with the procedure.That being said,if something is alive inside the woman when she goes in, but dead when she comes out,what do you call that.Some people call it choice I see it more as killing. The most innocent in our society Babies.What have they done to deserve death.You speak of counselling,do you counsel them on how much most of them will regret with shame and guilt the decision most of them were pressured to make.I'am not responsible for that shame and guilt.Why is there any shame and guilt in the first place, they are well informed, it's only a blob of tissue, it's not a real Baby. After all it's not born yet.Granted some will not care some will not grieve,but what about the one's that do, will you be there to counsel them as well.Probabaly not, they end up being collateral damage in this war between life and death.I stand there for them as well as the child. They may hate us now but eventually more will stand with us as some already are. Earpiece Charlie

The Pedgehog said...

“Have I ever threatened or intimidated you?”

As a matter of fact, yes, as a woman and a clinic employee I find your presence at the clinic both threatening and intimidating. I know that a lot of the staff and patients feel the same – about you and the other protesters.

“Do you think I don't have compassion for these women.”

I don’t know what is going on in your head, but the way you act is certainly not indicative of compassion. I don’t generally express compassion for people by standing around holding big signs that question their personal decisions.

“I know they are under a lot of stress,pressure to go through with the procedure.”

I feel like you are trying to imply here that women are coerced into having abortions. If that is what you’re getting at, you are sadly mistaken. If it isn’t, I apologize for misinterpreting you, but as mentioned before you don’t really express yourself very clearly.

“…if something is alive inside the woman when she goes in, but dead when she comes out,what do you call that.”

If that “something” is a fetus, it’s called an abortion. It’s legal in Canada. Deal with it.

When you talk about counselling you seem to think it’s me personally doing the counselling. It isn’t. I can’t really answer any of your questions about what is or isn’t said in the counselling sessions because I’m not in there, but I do know that whatever the woman wants to talk about, that’s what’s talked about. So yes, if the woman has questions about the after effects (emotional and physical) then those are answered to the best of the counsellor’s ability. The counsellor will also refer patients to further therapy if she feels it is needed or if it is requested by the patient.

Guilt is a tricky subject and varies from woman to woman. Some women will feel guilt afterwards, along with a mixture of emotions raging from anger to relief and everything in between. I think that’s to be expected. And no, I personally won’t be there to counsel them afterwards but there are places they can go for help (and I can certainly let people know of the resources available to them, if anyone is curious), and I’m not talking about your crisis centre next door. The shame, however, comes from societal misogyny and “slut-shaming”; ie making women feel like less than human for engaging in sexual intercourse and dealing with the consequences. If a woman feels ashamed of her abortion, chances are it’s because people like you will pass judgement on her.

All that said, abortion is a choice. The majority of women who have abortions come to that decision on their own. Whatever feelings they have about it afterwards are their own, and while the clinic has a narrow medical focus, we can certainly provide resources to women who are having trouble with their decision, both after and before. We are not solely about abortion. We are about choice.

If you truly cared about these women, you would be working towards making abortion a rarity; not by criminalizing it, but through prevention. Promote accessible birth control and comprehensive sex education. Make following through with a pregnancy a more attractive option by working to improve childcare services for working mothers. Don’t you think it would be more helpful to women if you worked to make these decisions unnecessary, than to stand in front of them in judgement? Do you really think you are doing the best and most compassionate thing for women? Do you ever ask yourself if there is something more effective that can be done?

Something to think about.

E said...

It appears Earpiece Charlie subscribes to the theory that women yearn to have unlimited numbers of babies, and that we only have abortions because evil doctors talk us out of the repeated motherhood that is our natural calling in life.

I know that I personally spend a lot of time cold-calling pregnant women to talk them out of having babies. "Hi, this is Elinor, calling on behalf of the Morgentaler Clinic. We were just wondering, would you like to have an abortion? We've got a two-for-one sale on this week, and if you sign up right now, we'll send you a free microwave..."

surbhi said...

Hey..just discovered your blog and found it very interesting. The regular presence of protesters outside the clinic amazed me (I didn't know people have so much time to waste) and even more surprising was this debate taking place here.

Good luck to you. :)

Anonymous said...

Charlie, Charlie..

If you REALLY want to save the babies why don't you volunteer at a sexual health clinic and advocate sex education? It seems mildly more productive than lashing out with grammatical warfare.

jedstah said...

This conversation proves that the only thing dumber then an argument on the real life is the same argument in internet.

The Pedgehog: 1
Earpiece Charlie: 0

Dead to Me.

The Pedgehog said...

I'm just surprised Godwin's Law hasn't come into effect yet.

. said...

How does Earpiece Charlie define what is and is not a baby? Also, where is it that he figures everyone who has an abortion is overwhelmed by guilt? It always amazes me the ability of these bullies to defend their actions by making a whole bunch of assumptions. They can assume that a baby begins when they want it to, attribute feelings they assume people have and then use this as evidence for harassing those accessing legal medical procedures in Canada.

Even if you had some sort of magical proof that people feel how you want them to and babies begin right when you say they do, your beef should be with federal law, not individuals accessing legal procedures. You need some evidence first and then, in the unlikely event you ever get some, you need some focus to aim your energy to those who can actually make the changes you are looking for.

We live in a society ruled by laws. Abortion is legal. The law has said it is not murder. If you don't like this, bullying pregnant women outside medical clinics doesn't change anything. It doesn't convince someone to change their mind in deciding to get an abortion and it especially doesn't do anything to convince people that you are resonable people with a reasonable position.

Ironically, this is good because you are not reasonable people and you don't have a resonable position. I encourage you to continue yelling at pregnant women and throwing around plastic fetuses and just generally making yourselves look like lunatics. It sure helps to make the case for things like bubble zones.

Unknown said...

OMG P! I am sooooo sorry I missed all this! You did a great job sticking up for us (women)! Yeah!!

As for Ear Piece Charlie (EPC) I have one question.

You said: "if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck then it is a duck"

Then you said: "if something is alive.... when she goes in, but dead when she comes out, what do you call that? Some call it choice. I see it more as killing"

Charlie, have you ever eaten duck? (or chicken? or an egg?)