Thursday, June 25, 2009

It's Those Front Lines Everyone Talks About...

Ok, so the protesters are getting really bad. Like, I would say even as bad as it was when I first started two years ago - before we started seriously going after the bubble zone, back when Crazy Legs would throw herself at cars. It's a different technique that they have now, but it's bad.

First of all, not only was the lady who dresses all in red out there, there was another one, all dressed in white! So from now on, it'll be Lady in Red and her sidekick, Monochrome. Peter Ryan was out there. The Mad Chatter had a sign that said "I regret my abortion" which was quite distressing. I just wanted to go out and say, "ok, let's talk about that". But we all know what the real intention of signs like that are. And the Mary statue was there, the statue Peter likes to cradle in his arms in a weird mother-and-child tableau I don't even want to begin to analyze.

And if that wasn't enough, Suzie Ryan was out (AFTER all the patients were in and the escorts went home), with her big stupid fetus sign that's as tall as she is. Of course, school is out so she thinks no one will call the cops. Well, we'll see.

They are just being awful, and it's not just the signs. It's screaming at the clinic manager: "How many abortions have you had??" It's saying things to the escorts. It's being just a couple steps over the line of human decency.

Right now I'm in the process of working out a support system for the escorts so they have an outlet for the frustration/discomfort of putting up with this crap. But it's a good group, and I have a couple more people starting in the next few weeks, so as always, we will prevail.

Something cool for y'all to check out: Randy McKeen calling for a bubble zone on Capital FM! (Go listen soon, because it probably will rotate off the site).

Also, NB provincial government cabinet shuffle - what does everyone think? If you get a sec, maybe shoot Mary Schryer an email and let her know how much you're looking forward to her being the new Minister for Health and working with us on improving abortion access. ;)

Keep up the struggle, friends!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Fashion and Weather

Obviously, yes, the Mad Chatter is the best name for the chatty lady. Now we have a new challenge: there is a protester who has come, for several weeks now, dressed top to bottom in red. Lady in Red? Monochrome? Help me out here people.

Not too bad this week - had a definite shortage of volunteers on the early shift, but the lovely TB held her ground. And of course SL was out walking with the protesters, keeping them on their toes as always. Check out SL's excellent letter to the editor (it's the second one down).

I am personally loving the sudden influx of anonymous trolls around here - stuff like the Tiller murder really brings them out of the woodwork, am I right?

Oh, I can't remember if I've already linked to it or not, but you should all definitely check out I am Dr. Tiller. It's amazing. You can also follow them on Twitter (and, in case you didn't know, you can follow me too! But I am not that interesting, honestly). I think in the near future I will do some kind of round-up of websites and Twitters you should be checking out, but right now I am MUCH too lazy.

The weather has been lovely the past few days, but of course it has now reverted back to grey and potentially rainy. I have a very exciting summer holiday (well, if ten days can be called a holiday - first world problem!) planned that will take me to a much sunnier place, so I'm finding it hard to be too upset. Just saying, though, that perhaps this week escorts and protesters alike might want to bring an umbrella. Or if the protesters could bring back the matching yellow rainsuits, that would be worth the crappy weather.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Another New Friend

Hi friends, sorry I didn't blog last week. I was SO ANGRY, and I just had to take myself away from internet stuff related to the Tiller murder.

There is a new protester as of last week. She is a very chatty lady, and most of her words are directed at our escorts as opposed to the patients. When our clinic manager went outside to check out the scene, as she often does, the new protester chatted away to her, mostly about what a horrible way it is to make a living (running an abortion clinic, that is). Her intent seems to be to get under our skin...which is kind of a waste of time, but whatever, I guess it's better (maybe?) than going after the patients.

The point is, we need a nickname for her. Help me out, people.

This week, there was a bit of excitement outside. Pink Hat (or the Artist Formerly Known as Pink Hat) called the police on SL, the clinic manager, for walking too close to her or something. The police came but I think they determined that being in someone's personal space isn't really a crime (anyway, it's pretty much exactly the same thing that they do to patients). Pink Hat also said SL was verbally abusing her, which is funny, because SL didn't say anything at all. One of the other protesters took like eight hundred pictures with his cell phone of SL just standing there. The whole thing was kind of surreal.

Interesting times. We had a vigil for Dr. Tiller on Saturday night, and it went very well. We had a good turn out (around 40 people), and no antis. I didn't get the closure I was hoping for but it was wonderful to know that so many people care, and that the movement is still strong.

Weather is grey and miserable. Where is summer?

Monday, June 1, 2009

What You Can Do

Hi friends - thanks for your support. It's good to see the pro-choice community coming together to mobilize and push forward, even though it takes a terrible tragedy to make it happen.

As mentioned before, Feministing has a great post up about what you can do in the aftermath of Dr. Tiller's death to honour his contribution to women's rights. I thought you also might like to know where you can donate in Dr. Tiller's name. In no particular order...(note: most of these are American organizations):

Medical Students for Choice
National Network of Abortion Funds
Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada
National Abortion Federation
Planned Parenthood
Canadian Federation for Sexual Health
Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health
The George Tiller Memorial Abortion Fund
NARAL Pro-Choice America
Abortion Care Network
Association of Reproductive Health Professionals
The Morgentaler Defense Fund

Let me know if you know of any others.

Also, there is a vigil being held in Ottawa tomorrow night. Here are the details:

Date: Tuesday, June 2.
Time: 8:00pm - 9:00pm
Location: Human Rights Monument, Elgin & Lisgar

If anyone knows of any other Canadian vigils being planned, please let me know in comments and I will update. I'm hoping to put one together for Fredericton and I will let you know the details as soon as possible.