Monday, June 01, 2009

Dr. Tiller's Assasination Is An Act of Terrorism

All I have to say about Dr. George Tiller's assassination yesterday is that it is an act of terrorism. This man put himself at risk on behalf of women and was murdered because of it. The ultimate objective is to intimidate other doctors from helping women at a time of crisis in their lives. Anyone who has ever known a woman who aborted a baby learned it is not a frivolous decision on their part. Late term abortions are especially traumatic for women and typically done to save their lives.

I've always respected people of conscious who genuinely believe abortion is wrong and have worked within the political system to oppose it. Regrettably, too many anti-abortion activists believe their moral imperative extends to murder. American conservatives have enabled the sort of terrorists that murdered Dr. Tiller and his family is living with the consequences.


christian_left said...

As you say, this shameful act of violence is, at least in part, an act of terrorism in that it seems not only intended to stop one particular abortion provider by killing him but also to strike terror in the hearts of all abortion providers everywhere. The far right fringe is feeling cornered and out of power these days and is lashing out, just like other extremists from Timothy McVeigh to the 9/11 hijackers. The target is not random but is deliberately chosen.

We should also not forget that those who falsely demonize abortion as a key "moral" issue of our times have played a role in creating a climate for this type of murder. I am tempted to picket the Catholic church this weekend, for no religious group has been more visible in demonizing abortion as somehow the biggest moral issue of our age. Even as poverty, injustice, war, and greed destroy our world, for some reason the Catholic hierarchy thinks that abortion, absurdly, is somehow the #1 moral issue and will publicly shame politicians who support women's reproductive freedom (but not for going to war or opposing economic justice?) But then I need to remember that, even though my particular Protestant denomination is lukewarmly pro-choice, there are still plenty of anti-abortion zealots on the Protestant side of the fence too. Somehow the entire public face of Christian moral outrage has been deflected away from the true evils of our society such as violence, war, and greed, and onto innocent scapegoats.

Annette said...

This is not the fault of the Catholic Church, I blame it on the extremists known as Operation Rescue. Also, Bill O'Reilly is a part of it. He has fostered the hatred and promoted it on his show numerous times. He has called Dr. Tiller a killer and said he wished someone would carry out justice on him before if the state of Kansas couldn't do it.
Well I guess in O'Reilly's eyes justice has been served. According to Randall Terry of Operation Rescue it has.
They are Terrorists and should be classified as such.

christian_left said...

It isn't just Bill O'Reilly and Randall Terry. There are many religious groups, both Catholic and Protestant, who participate in creating a discourse of demonizing abortion providers, including Tiller, as "baby killers" and lamenting that they have not been brought to "justice." For example, google "American Catholic" and one of the top hits will be a blog with numerous posts calling him "Tiller the Killer," even after (!) he was murdered. This strain of thinking is unfortunately quite widespread in the Roman Catholic church and several of the more conservative Protestant denominations as well. (It is less prominent in some of the mainline Protestant churches, though there are plenty of lay people who join extremist anti-abortion groups as individuals.) Even among church leaders who use less flamboyant rhetoric, there is still a relentless fixation on abortion as the church's defining "moral" crusade. Too often, the focus is on demonizing individuals--such as abortion providers and politicians who support choice--rather than on addressing the root causes and alternatives that might actually reduce the number of abortions. (Like, for instance, supporting easier access to birth control?) I would not label any of these groups, or even Operation Rescue (which I heard has disavowed Terry's statements?) or Bill O'Reilly himself, as terrorist organizations, but I would ask them to consider more carefully how their hyper-inflated anti-abortion rhetoric may be fueling the flames of extremists who are willing to take violent action.

ksliberal said...

Right on! "Culture of Life" my behind.
These people are fanatical terrorists and I sincerely hope that there is a legal way for the government to apply anti-terrorist laws against this guy. It is way past time for an example to made. Roeder recently told the Associated Press that there are more murders planned. These religious extremists are desperate to have their way and they will stop at nothing.

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