George Tiller was an evil man, but no one I know would have wished him killed and all leadership groups in the pro-life movement have condemned his murder.
It’s been 11 years since Eric Rudolph bombed a Birmingham abortion clinic and Dr. Barnett Slepian was killed in Buffalo. There have been no other episodes of assault on abortion providers reported by the National Abortion Federation since then. That hasn't stopped abortion supporters from painting pro-life supporters with the broad brush. From Huffington Post today, a comment representative of hundreds, "These home-grown right-wing extremists pose the most serious terrorist threat that we face." Yes, despite ongoing attacks and the killing of 2974 by Muslim terrorists on September 11th, pro-life extremists, responsible for the murders of possibly eight individuals working at abortion clinics over the 36 year history of the Roe decision, are absolutely the greatest terrorist threat this nation faces.
Unfortunately we can't get opinions of the 16,000,000 unborn infants aborted since the first of seven reprehensible murders of abortion clinic staff occurred in 1993. I suspect that these infants might differ with the Huff Po crowd, however, regarding the efforts of the pro-life movement. Millions of pro-life supporters are committed to peaceful, legal activities which have protected many human lives from the threats of abortion, infanticide, and euthnasaia. Nevertheless, the Tiller murder will be cited as prima-facie evidence by liberals and abortion supporters that the pro-life movement is home for hateful, dangerous domestic terrorist types.
While he did rescind the Mexico City policy, President Obama has had little to say specifically about the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) since assuming office, though I suspect few believe he has forgotten his pre-election promise to Planned Parenthood. On his much vaunted One Hundred Days Press Conference the President stated:
Now, the Freedom of Choice Act is not highest legislative priority. I believe that women should have the right to choose. But I think that the most important thing we can do to tamp down some of the anger surrounding this issue is to focus on those areas that we can agree on. And that's — that's where I'm going to focus.
The question then…the question then is how do we work through these conflicts? Is it possible for us to join hands in common effort? As citizens of a vibrant and varied democracy, how do we engage in vigorous debate? How does each of us remain firm in our principles, and fight for what we consider right, without, as Father John said, demonizing those with just as strongly held convictions on the other side?
It is very possible that a pro-life supporter, absolutely distraught with the recent verdict in the Tiller case and Tiller's ability to continue an abortion practice which specializes in late term abortions, carried out this heinous crime. The timing of this act in relation to the President's comments at Notre Dame, however, creates the potential for a perfect storm.
The President’s first few months have seen him successfully push a statist agenda which has led to a drop in public support. One can only hope more Americans seriously question the "change" they voted for in November, but with a drop in public approval and the need to press “reform” in healthcare and energy, abortion has been forced to the back burner. The murder of one of the world's most notorious abortionists, in his church, possibly by a pro-life supporter, adds enormous fuel to the smoldering inferno that is the abortion debate in this nation. This is a watershed moment not only in the abortion debate, but possibly in the discussion of domestic terrorism. No doubt strategists are busy right now trying to determine how best the murder of George Tiller can advance the abortion agenda of the White House. I suspect Secretary Napolitano is having Department of Homeland Security personnel print extra copies of her favorite publication, "Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment" tonight, in preparation for operations targeting national pro-life organizations and their members in the morning.
Many on the left are already labeling this act terrorism. From Kim Gandy, the president of the National Organization for Women, “We call on the new attorney general Eric Holder and head of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano to treat these murders in the same way they would treat politically-motivated domestic terrorism of any other kind and put the full resources of their two departments behind that effort.” Attorney General Holder has responded:
Before the Obama administration labels the Tiller murder terrorism, we might review a few other events (of many) from the last few years which have twisted political leaders and mainstream media into semantic pretzels. On July 28, 2006, on the eve of the Jewish Sabbath, Naveed Haq, a Muslim of Pakistani origin, forced a 14-year-old girl to get him into the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle building by holding a gun to her back. He then pulled out the two large-caliber semi-automatic pistols he had just purchased and went on a murderous rampage. Mr. Haq killed one woman, Pam Waechter, 58, an assistant director at the federation, and injured five others, one of whom was 17 weeks pregnant. This rampage was classified as a “hate” crime, despite statements by Mr. Haq during the siege that included “I am a Muslim American. I am angry at Israel.” Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels said, "This was a purposeful, hateful act, as far as we know by an individual acting on his own." The prosecutor in the case added, "there is no evidence the shooting itself was an act of terrorism".
On March 3, 2006, Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar, 22, an Iranian immigrant, drove a sport utility vehicle into a crowded pedestrian zone at the University of North Carolina. He struck nine people but, fortunately, none were severely injured. Despite remarks after his arrest that included that he acted to "avenge the deaths of Muslims around the world", UNC Chancellor James Moeser stated, "As we have investigated this, we've come more and more to the conclusion that this was one individual acting alone in a criminal act." The initial NY Times report on the incident didn’t even mention Taheri-azar’s jihadi diatribes or the fact that he was a devout Muslim.
When Sulejman Talovic, an 18-year-old Bosnian Muslim immigrant entered the Salt Lake City Trolley Square Mall on February 12th, 2007, he was loaded with enough ammo to “inexplicably” kill dozens of victims — and he would have, if an alert off-duty cop hadn’t returned fire and stopped him. Talovic still managed to methodically murder five and wound four others with a shotgun before he died. Talovic had a histroy of regular mosque attendance, had told several acquaintances his grandfather was part of the jihad in Bosnia and was wearing a Koranic necklace at the time of the shootings. In documents recently released under a Freedom of Information Act request, FBI Special Agent Tim Fuhrman says the FBI does know the attack wasn’t a terrorist attack, as some had speculated. “Clearly, he had some religious beliefs, but just because someone has religious beliefs doesn’t mean anything is a terrorist act”, he said.
Headlines tomorrow will no doubt report on the poisonous and dangerous rhetoric of pro-life supporters which demonizes those on the other side of the debate and encourages violence. We live in a nation in which the murderous acts of Jihadists, stating they are acting in the name of Islam, are called “hate crimes”; we are told that perpertrators of such crimes suffer from mental disorders. We are never under the threat of violent jihadi domestic terrorism. Nothing to see here, move along.