May 31 2009
Update: Despite the denial on the right and the ranting of leftward nuts like Andrew Sullivan – who is raging about all Christians as if they do nothing but murder people – there is a rational ‘center’ to this horrific news, best illustrated by a commenter at Gateway Pundit:
Despite peoples’ wishes, I think we’re going to find out that Tiller’s murderer was indeed associated, albeit on the fringes, with some sort of pro-life organization.
That associationÂ will indeedÂ be used to tar the entirety of the pro-life movement, in precisely the same way that the entirety of IslamÂ wasn’tÂ after 9/11, or the Left in generalÂ wasn’tÂ after a Weather Underground bombing.
Actually, the rightwing and many in this country DID tarnish all of Islam (can we forget Anne Coulter’s dismal ‘towel head’ comment at CPAC?), and the rightwing has been nailing every liberal with the heinous crimes of Bill Ayers (who should have been locked up since he is no better than the man who just killed Tiller).Â
This is how emotions get out of control. This is how zealots (left and right) are created. As long as it is ‘us’ verses those ‘traitors in America’ on the left or right (traitors are all the fringes ever see outside their echo chambers) we will see American-on-American violence like this.
Chill the hyperventilating, respect each other. Learn to disagree like adults. And abhor the fringes. That is the rationale response.Â
Major Update: They have the bastard, news conference later today (supposedly 4 PM Kansas (central?) time). As I noted in the comments section, some people think I paint with too broad a stroke when condemning the pro-life movement. Well, that is just silly, since I am still a self proclaimed pro-lifer, albeit well away from the fringe. I liken it to the difference between being opposed against blind affirmative action (which I am) verses being in the KKK. It is a subtlety many cannot grasp. - end update
No one is going to be buying into the idea the far right is not populated with violent extremists anytime soon given this breaking news:
George Tiller, the Wichita doctor who became a national lightning rod in the debate over abortion, was shot to death this morning as he walked into church services.
Police said they are looking for white male who was driving a 1990s powder blue Ford Taurus with Kansas license plate 225 BAB.
Tiller has long been a focal point of protest by abortion opponents because his clinic, Women’s Health Care Services at 5701 E. Kellogg, is one of the few in the country where late-term abortions are performed.
Late term abortions are not well supported in this country. Some are necessary, too many are for convenience. But we have no idea which ones are which, and we have no idea which ones Dr. Tiller performed more than the other.
What I am sure of is the man was not gunned down on the way to church by some radical pro-abortion nutcase. The ‘true conservative’ drama queens can pretend all day long they are the victims of concern with right wing extremists, but as I pointed outÂ when this DHS mess came out, the track record for pro lifers under democrat presidents is damn violent and conservatives would pay a price if the violent right woke up again:
One thing my former colleagues in the conservative movement better brace themselves for is the possibility the DHS report may be true, and in fact there are indication rightwing extremism is heating up.
One of the things a lot of us heard while debating this subject is that there is a lot of real concern with these groups right now. It is not â€œObama trying to attack his opponentsâ€ concern (they are imploding so fast he has no need to worry). There are hints and whispers that there really are disturbing signals starting to show. I wonâ€™t go into it any further right now. But things could be going in a direction the conservatives suffering from Obama Derangement Syndrome may just not be aware of – or worse are not willing to admit is happening.
This is not the first time the extreme rightwing went violent on Tiller:
Protesters blockaded Tiller’s clinic during Operation Rescue’s “Summer of Mercy” protests during the summer of 1991, and Tiller was shot by Rachelle Shannon at his clinic in 1993. Tiller was wounded in both arms, and Shannon remains in prison for the shooting.
A lesson to learn here is don’t pretend the thugs on your team are innocent little angles when we all know they are not. Some minimal standards can go a long way in politics – even if the opposition is not willing to stay our of the gutter themselves. Gunning someone down on the way to church is as un-American as communism and socialism.
Update: And the rightwing fever swamps go into full meltdown to boot.
Update: More rightwing fever swamp nonsense. So glad I stepped out of those swamps.
Update: Is it any wonder some nutcase tries to right perceived wrongs through vigilante justice given the rants of the extremist pro lifers?
â€œAmid a scattering of angry protests over his support for abortion rights, President Obama addressed the issue head-on Sunday at the University of Notre Dame, calling for â€˜open hearts, open minds, fair-minded wordsâ€™ in the pursuit of â€˜common ground,â€™â€ theÂ Washington PostÂ says.
One protester yelled â€˜Abortion is murder!â€™ â€˜Baby killer!â€™ and â€˜You have blood on your hands.â€™ Another shouted, â€˜Stop killing our children.â€™
â€œProtest organizers Alan Keyes, a former GOP presidential candidate, and conservative activist Randall Terry, both of whom had been charged with trespassing during earlier protests leading up to Obama’s visit, stayed outside Sunday to direct the opposition. â€˜Our mission is to so tar President Obama with the blood of the innocent that he can never escape his role in the history of the killing of the innocents,â€™ Terry said. â€˜We want people to think Barack Obama equals dead babies so that in 2012 he cannot seduce Catholics and moderates who supported him in the last election.â€™â€
Look, I am very much pro life, but there are limits. One of the problems I have with this entire debate is the focus on the Â individual tough choices of women facing pregnancies pales verses legalizing factories of young human beings to harvest for spare parts (embryonic stem cells). The latter is a state-sanctioned, for-profit concentration camp for young human beings. It will be murder of the innocent on a mind boggling scale – and yet these so called pro-lifers who deny evolution (which is the linch pin to making it illegal to kill human beings of all shapes, colors AND AGES) are out focused on the 1, maybe 2 abortions a woman may have in her entire life (many more don’t have any).
The madness of the movement in evident in its focus (or lack of therein), its overheated rhetoric (Obama has not carried out one single abortion, neither did George W Bush), and its overstepping into individual lives (they also want to outlaw contraceptives, which to them is another form of abortion).
Many people can agree that killing innocent young humans is wrong, but just as many find the pro lifer extremists just as bad as that they say they are fighting.
Update: Randall Terry wastes no time in being a crass drama queen:
Randall Terry, founder of Operation Rescue states, “George Tiller was a mass-murderer.Â We grieve for him that he did not have time to properly prepare his soul to face God.Â Â I am more concerned that the Obama Administration will use Tiller’s killing to intimidate pro-lifers into surrendering our most effective rhetoric and actions.Â Abortion is still murder.Â And we still must call abortion by its proper name; murder. Â
He is more concerned about his movement than the killing of his fellow citizen? That is not ‘pro life’, that is insane.Â
Here’s my prediction: the pro-life movement has been mortally crippled in this post 9-11 world with this killing and the cold responses we see from the more vocal and extreme leaders of the movement.