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Apr 21 2006

Fetus-Fetishist Sting Operation in Indiana

Speaking of women’s bodily sovereignty, have you all seen this morning’s breathless communiqué from Planned Parenthood? Apparently misogynist anti-choice fucktards are luring unsuspecting women into fake PP clinics and opening cans of past-date whupass on’em. I present the whole email; the PP blog featuring the story is inconvenient to navigate.

An Indiana mother recently accompanied her daughter and her daughter’s boyfriend to one of Indiana’s Planned Parenthood clinics, but they unwittingly walked into a “crisis pregnancy center” run by an anti-abortion group — one that shared a parking lot with the real Planned Parenthood clinic, and was designed expressly to lure Planned Parenthood patients and deceive them.

The group took down the girl’s confidential personal information and told her to come back for her appointment, which they said would be in their “other office” (the real Planned Parenthood office nearby). When she arrived for her appointment, not only did the Planned Parenthood staff have no record of her, but the police were there — the “crisis pregnancy center” had called them, claiming that a minor was being forced to have an abortion against her will.

The “crisis pregnancy center” staff then proceeded to wage a campaign of intimidation and harassment over the following days, showing up at the girl’s home and calling her father’s workplace. Our clinic director reports that she was “scared to death to leave her house.” They even went to her school and urged classmates to pressure her not to have an abortion.

Behind the Story: The anti-choice movement is setting up so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” across the country. Some of them have neutral-sounding names and run ads that falsely promise the full range of reproductive health services, but dispense anti-choice propaganda and intimidation instead. And according to The New York Times, there are currently more of these centers in the U.S. than there are actual abortion providers! What’s more, these centers have received $60 million of government grants. They’re being funded by our tax dollars.

It seems extraordinary that nobody in the real Planned Parenthood clinic perceived that a fake Planned Parenthood clinic had sprung up next door. Clearly the organization is in dire need of donations so they can afford to staff their clinics with non-morons.

Planned Parenthood Staffer X: I’m goin’ out for coffee. Anyone want anything?
Planned Parenthood Staffer Y: You goin’ to Starbucks?
Planned Parenthood Staffer X: Naw, I thought I’d try that new joint that just opened next door to the place with the big sign that says “Planned Parenthood Crisis Clinic.”
Planned Parenthood Staffer Y: You mean the place within a stone’s throw of our genuine clinic?
Planned Parenthood Staffer X: Yeah, it’s right across the parking lot from here. See where all the pregnant women and girls are getting sucked through that doorway as though there were an evil godbag vortex inside? It’s next door to that.
Planned Parenthood Staffer Y: I’ll take a double Americano.

47 comments

5 pings

  1. Kate

    Twisty concludes: “It seems extraordinary that nobody in the real Planned Parenthood clinic perceived that a fake Planned Parenthood clinic had sprung up next door. Clearly the organization is in dire need of donations so they can afford to staff their clinics with non-morons.”

    Thanks Twist, I am having a really shitty day and beginning my patriarchy blaming, man hating early, so this only adds fuel to the fire. My head may eject from my neck by this afternoon.

    And of course, whilst reading this, I was thinking exactly what you point out at your conclusion. WTF? Why can’t these dopes at PP put up a friggin’ fence? How about a sign that says, “Planned Parenthood Clinic Here – ONLY” possibly with a big arrow pointing to the ‘other’ with the disclaimer, “other institution is NOT affiliated with PP nor does it provide crisis services to women.” Of course they’d go to friggin court for that too and go to court over PP putting up a fence, etc. Even though they are outnumbered as for public support, they have effectively shamed all potential support away from Planned Parenthood.

    You know, much like every godbag individually punishes women.

    And if I have to deal with another dumbshit man that thinks he knows more than me because he is who he is and because he’s done this for so long, because you know, he’s a white male and had that priviledge, and of course I’m a woman and I wouldn’t know shit if I was sitting in it. Things had better improve today or my frontal lobe will have a complete meltdown by 2 pm.

  2. Kate

    OK, now I can think clearly after a dose of nicotine and a minute to collect my thoughts.

    Are the victims in this instance filing suit? It seems to me some legal violations, much less civil violations have occurred as such:

    Fraud: Posing as someone or something that one is not with the clear intent to deceive in order to gain access to individual’s personal information. That if said party had disclosed honestly at the outset, their true purpose and intent, said information would not have been given. Therefore said party making the fraud knew this and that their decision to engage in fraudulent activity was based on this knowledge and therefore was done with full understanding of the degree of their deception.

    Violation of privacy: Pursuing the girl’s home, her parents and even exposing strangers and others to information that was intended to be private.

    Harrassment: Hounding them and using said illegally gained private information to conduct a malicious smear campaign.

    Violation of Civil Rights: Conducting a smear campaign with the clear intention of intimidation to curb said individual’s right to conduct their life in a lawful manner without fear of said intimidation.

    Malicious Intent to cause harm: By engaging in said harrassment and by informing others who had no right to such priviledged information of indiviual’s personal, lawful decisions. Said party disclosed such personal information with the intent to cause embarrassment and ostracization to individual they targeted. Party did such acitvity knowing full well the tumultous social controversy surrounding the lawful activity the individual planned to undergo and in fact, it can be argued that awareness of the controversy and its potential to incite hatred and violence was the sole percurser to party’s decision to release information.

    The intention to cause harm by spreading such information to other parties was clear; since the party themselves made the decision to incite a potentially harmful situation, responsibility for whatever may have or will take place in the future to individual lies squarely with the party that released such information and attempted to incite social hatreds and possible resulting harm.

    Breach of Confidentiality: Acting as a human services institution, said institutions have a complicit (and at least in this state a legal) obligation to hold their client’s information confidential and to use due discretion when disclosure is made to any party and their obligation to inform client to whom they wish to disclose said information and for what purpose and to obtain a signed release from client pursuant to such.

    I would say that the issue is worthy of not only civil claims for monetary damages and possible criminal charges, I’d also think that it would be persuable under the federal hate crimes legislation as a felony hate crime.

  3. saltyC

    Whenever I see a billboard that says “Pregnant? We can help” I like to call their 1-800 number and harrass them for as long as possible, then call them up again. It’s a great way to let off steam, plus it’s tying up their phone lines!

    Here’s one:

    1-800-395-help
    That was from the first link when I googled.

    from their advice page:

    Having an abortion may affect more than just your body and your mind — it may have an impact on your relationship with God. What is God’s desire for you in this situation? How does God see your unborn child? These are important questions to consider.

  4. KH

    Ohhhhhhh. I’m getting a little tired of waiting around for the tipping point; I don’t want my lobes to implode. Can we start the revolution today? Pretty please? I’ve got a serrated kitchen knife at my disposal . . .

  5. Brooklynite

    Cute. But when did this site turn into “I Blame Planned Parenthood”?

    There’s nothing in the piece you linked that suggests that PP was unaware of the existence of the fake clinic, or that they hadn’t taken steps to prevent confusion.

    Maybe PP screwed up here. I have a hunch that they didn’t. But regardless, your schticky little back-and-forth strikes me as a gratuitous swipe at folks who are doing vital work at serious risk to themselves.

  6. Elaine

    I live in Indiana and have not heard of this. I can’t figure out where this is. Is this in Bloomington or Indianapolis? I think those are the two main PP’s. The one in Bloomington is constantly attacked and has even masked their sign so that it doesn’t look like a planned parenthood.

  7. Brooklynite

    Or maybe I’m just in a particularly humorless mood this morning. I don’t know.

  8. JRoth

    Yes, Brooklynite, perhaps a bit humor-impaired at the moment. The laugh from Twisty’s fantasia was the only thing that kept me from hauling ass to IN with a torch and can of gasoline. Of course, I apparently don’t need to go that far, if these shitholes are more common than PP clinics.

    I wish these godbag bastards didn’t fill me with such rage; I’d probably be more productive otherwise. But I can’t help it. A very gentle friend of mine spit right into the hand of a clinic protestor trying to hand him “literature” – an almost involuntary response, as he described it, and one he didn’t regret. But still, probably not the actual optimal way to improve things.

  9. teffie-phd

    I just saw this story line play out on Law and Order SVU the other day. The teenager beat herself (with the help of her boyfriend) to kill her fetus because one of these fake clinics deceived her. The bad godbag Doctor was even arrested in the end.

    But of course that was in good old liberal tv land which is hardly patriarchy free.

  10. fishbane

    I think Brooklynite needs to calm down.

    If a grocery store gains a competitor down the street and fails to notice, you’d call them dumb, and expect them to have business problems. Why apply a different status here?

    – A DUMBO-ite.

  11. Bunny

    *banging head aganist monitor repeatedly*

  12. Twisty

    Lighten up, Brooklynite. I’m sure Planned Parenthood will survive my little joke, and I hope you will, too.

  13. Hideous

    Isn’t it wild that people will go to such wack lengths to police the nation’s pussy? I’m with Kate. If this isn’t a hate crime, I don’t know what is.

  14. Pony

    A similar situation occurred here several years ago. The godbag clinics did not pretend to be PP, did not use the PP name or logo. They didn’t do anything illegal. Confused, unprepared and panicked women mistook them for PP. I suspect, but do not know, the reason the potential clients did so is because is was all still klnd of muted then. Now, we have the Morgantaler Clinics. No mistake.

    http://www.morgentaler.ca/

  15. Ms Kate

    While I appreciate the information in this post, I have to say I am a bit hurt and offended by the characterization of PP workers.

    I once had a neighbor. Very bright and socially aware young woman in her late 20s, as was I at the time. She and her fiance played decent music in their yard on weekends and we all played with the dogs next door. We occasionally walked to the bus stop and chatted on the way. She could have been making big bucks in the private sector, but she decided she would rather run the front desk at a PP clinic.

    I was on vacation when John Salvi murdered her at her post, in cold blood. I heard from the friend I was staying with. I didn’t realize it was her until I saw a picture on the newspaper on the plane.

    The weekend music stopped. Her fiance never went back to their shared home, so far as I know, and friends cleaned out the apartment weeks later.

    So maybe PP employees don’t venture out for good reason, if what happened to Shannon was any indication of occupational hazard.

    Needless to say, I really don’t appreciate the slight.

  16. Pony

    Here is an example of the problem. As you can see, the main links do not tell me where I can get an abortion or whom I could call to find out where. It’s theoretical and legal information about abortion, in spite of my google search question. But NOTE: on the right, the RIGHT SWINGS IT OUT. They use the WORD and tell you where to call. So are you going to spend another hour trying to find legit info? Likely not. You call that number and they won’t let you go. You’ll be delayed a minimum of a day. Listen. I spent almost 30 minutes in futile effort on the Planned Parenthood website, and the Canadian gov website trying to find ABORTION info. They dipsy-doodle around it. If you don’t know the name MORGANTALER, if you don’t have a sympathetic doctor, or knowledgeable friends, you are sunk.

    http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&q=where can I obtain an abortion&btnG=Search&meta=cr=countryCA

  17. Pony

    Morgentaler (spelled correctly).
    http://www.morgentaler.ca/

    American women might choose the Montreal clinic but could go to any of them.

    Morgentaler Montreal toll free: 1-888-401-4844
    They ask that you call ahead to book an appointment. No barrier to American (or I assume other country) women. See the PRICE section of the city websites.

    From Childbirth by Choice Trust
    http://www.cbctrust.com/faq.php

    Planned Parent hood (toll-free hotline for Ontario: 1-800-463-6739 and for Manitoba: 1-800-432-1957),

    Your local public health department (under government listings in your phone book),

    The Canadian Abortion Rights Action League locally, or at (416) 961-1507,

    National Abortion Federation’s toll-free hotline: 1-800-424-2280

  18. wolfa

    If any readers here are intending to go to Montreal for an abortion, if they would like to get in touch with me I can help out with food / accomodations / recommendations / transport. (I’m not sure that many Americans would at this point find it easier to come to Montreal instead of the large liberal cities on the coast that it’s right near, but the offer is open anyhow.)

  19. Ms Kate

    Pony, I think your explorations get down to exactly WHY PP staffers might be so furtive about the a-word and why they might not be exploring their surroundings during breaks.

    I don’t think it is stupidity or dull sensibilities, as Twisty seems to imply. I’d bet they don’t exactly wander over to Starbucks in such a casual way. Not without wacko or two in tow screaming MURDERER! SHE’S A MURDRER!

    The wingnuts have them terrorized.

    Staffers get followed home from clinics. Women get assailed and assaulted coming and going, clinics are under constant surveillance by nutjobs with bad intent. Plate numbers are noted and traced. Wunnerful.

    Even before Shannon was murdered by Mr. Grade A “Nice Alter Boy” Wingnut, she never once mentioned that she worked at PP. Even though she was outgoing, nobody in the neighborhood really knew WHERE she worked until she was dead.

    Of course, since she was gunned down, I’d bet lips have gotten tighter.

  20. Ms Kate

    Something I’d be interested to know: why aren’t the wackjobs attacking the other wackjobs who set up their phony trojan (ahem) clinics? I know it sounds like an Onion headline (Anti-Abortion Extremests Bomb Anti-Abortion Extremists at Fake Planned Parenthood Clinic), but how do these guys know who not to protest? And, if so, how come they don’t protest their own clinics to keep up the ruse?

  21. Twisty

    The implication that a joke involving a fictitious conversation between fictitious characters indicates a flippant or cavalier attitude toward the politically-motivated murder of actual abortion clinic workers strikes me as extreme in the extreme. Jesus H Christ.

  22. Pony

    I don’t deny that may be the case in the States. Here, PP is openly available, governemnt funded, listed in the telphone book with address fax etc. It’s the website which is less than helpful. I blame the patriarchy, which mostly employs male (visually oriented/geeky) web designers. They haven’t clued in yet, most of them, that a website isn’t about THEM and their love of flash. (Loading!) It’s about the INFORMATION we want, whether it’s where to get an abortion, or vegetarian sushi.

    And: we do have gun laws.

    They aren’t perfect and are taking a beating from the U.S. gun lobby which has infiltrated here, but our gun laws are still better than in the States. (Most Canadian women back gun laws; too many of them have been at the wrong end of a hunting rifle.}

  23. Ms Kate

    It’s hard to laugh when your neighbor, who wasn’t stupid, was murdered doing that same job you ascribe stupidity to.

  24. Keeshond

    saltyC, how about giving a primer for those of us who’d also like to taunt and annoy the misogynistic godbags? Pointers for those of us who want to play along at home would be greatly appreciated.

  25. KMTBERRY

    Twisty, I hate to say it, but implying that Planned Parenthood workers are just plain stupid……wasn’t the best idea. (But don’t worry, I still worship you and you can’t stop me !!)
    On a lighter note, and a more forward thinking one: I think it is just the G*R*E*A*T*E*S*T idea to PROTEST outside a FAKE Crisis Pregnancy clinic !!! Why wait for the godbags to make the mistake? Why not give them a little TASTE of being THREATENED with a BOMBING? Let them see how it feels to be terrorized. Let’s write down THEIR plate numbers and call THEM at home and rant at THEM for being BABY KILLERS !! My brain savors the idea like a delicious lozenge.

  26. Pony

    I think all such actions would defeat our cause. They drain our limited energy and resources. It never works to adopt the enemies tactics. I would focus my energy on making the clinic viable (fundraising to corporations forget the bakesale) getting women there, lobbying your congress person en masse ( one well worded letter signed by people with their addresses and degrees — yes sorry it helps) volunteering to make the non profit websites informative. Like that.

  27. saltyC

    Keeshond..
    when I called, I asked them point blank what they thought about abortion and whether they thought it was a woman’s right to choose. Then I asked them since they are against abortion, why they don’t mention that on any of their ads, and why they try to appear neutral, and I went on and on about false advertisement and how they insult women’s intelligence, etc. I kept saying “wait wait just one more question,” forcing them to hang up on me rudely, then called them back and asked about whether they believed abortion is murder, and whether that belief influenced the violence against clinics, etc.

    But you can say anything, all you have to do is waste their time, really. I don’t think it qualified as harrassment, I didn’t use any cuss words or threaten them.

  28. R. Mildred

    The republicans have obviously invented a field version of the “willful ignorance of emperical nakedness” field they have set up around Bush, which these crisis slut shaming places are using.

    A sign and somebody to stand around and make sure the crisis godbag center didn’t tear it down would have avoided this. I think some mild amount of blaming can be spared for them, especially after PP refused President Fire Thunder’s offer.

  29. Jo

    I worked at an abortion clinic in a small town for a couple years. During that time, some folks funded by Life Dynamics, Inc. set up a pseudoclinic next door to ours.

    We could do exactly shit about the fact that they were enticing and harrassing our patients, getting personal information out of people under false pretenses, and (in one case) separating a minor from her mother and *locking her up* in order to browbeat her.

    We could do shit because the law in this state doesn’t allow for false advertising claims, as such–it’s caveat emptor all the way. The only people who could complain in a legal sense were the women who were taken advantage of, and most of the time (except for the one child’s mother) they’d had enough and just wanted to get an abortion and be done.

    We could do shit in a guerilla sense because the anti-choicers have immense amounts of money and lawyers willing to fight for them. Hell, LDI fucking PAID protesters to show up in front of our clinic. We were four women, running a place that was open four days a week, often providing contraceptive and healthcare services for free when people needed it.

    It’s even worse when you work for PP (I did that, too). I can bet you dollars to doghair that the reason the pseudoclinic next door to the Indiana PP is still in business is the PP’s management’s fear of retaliation.

    Planned Parenthood–and here I’m talking about the bureaucracy, not the individuals who kick ass every day and work hard doing what they do–is just like any other big corporation, at the end of the day. They’re concerned about liability and public perception and, honestly, I no longer think that they’d go to the wall in a case like this.

  30. Puffin

    True story: I sit on the board of my community’s domestic violence and sexual assault crisis agency. Our Executive Director gets a call from a woman we’ll call Nancy. Nancy’s mission in life is to save unborn babies and George W.’s got a shitload of money that’s going to help her do just that. Trouble is, those pesky liberals have put some restrictions on the faith-based initiative motherload that will fund her life’s work. So, she tells our E.D., she has prayed and prayed and come to the difficult decision that in order to buy the expensive ultra-sound machine for her “clinic” that will show teenage mothers the faces of their soon-to-be babies, she will need to pair up with a non-profit that actually does advocacy work on behalf of women.

    Our E.D. said go fuck yourself but Nancy is determined. She already has a store-front for her “clinic” and is advertising her services as a “Pregnancy Counselor.” The newspaper ads run weekly, the billboard is up, our town is one more emboldened whack-job closer to resembling the Republic of Gilead. It will be but a matter of time before Nancy has purchased the ultra-sound machine and attended her 2-day training on its proper use. The way I figure it, she’ll be lubing up teen-age tummies by November.

    And she’ll have the market cornered, that’s for sure, because there is no Planned Parenthood in my town and the one doctor (in private practice) who actually provides abortions doesn’t do a whole lot to advertise.

    But we do have four Starbucks, so whoopity shit.

  31. R. Mildred

    Something I’d be interested to know: why aren’t the wackjobs attacking the other wackjobs who set up their phony trojan (ahem) clinics? I know it sounds like an Onion headline (Anti-Abortion Extremests Bomb Anti-Abortion Extremists at Fake Planned Parenthood Clinic), but how do these guys know who not to protest? And, if so, how come they don’t protest their own clinics to keep up the ruse?

    Ever since the repugs got hold of the house in ’98, the terrorist attacks on abortion clinics dropped sharply, from like a few hundred per year to about 5.

    Terrorism is the last resort of those who can’t kill people via political action.

  32. jonk

    quite in agreement with brooklynite and ms kate here – some jokes aren’t funny.

  33. Twisty

    Damn. Tough crowd.

  34. Shy Girl

    Slight tangent, but I’ll hop in anyhow.
    It’s too bad that a law can’t be passed requiring that anti-choicers (I like that one) pay a tax supporting childcare, maternity leave benefits, adoption organizations, oral contraceptives for men, or just education about contraception, any time they spread their propaganda.
    Actually they remind me of children who desperately want a pet, yet want s#!t all to do with caring for one once it’s around, except they are adults who have a tendency towards violence.
    Funny how ‘pro-life’ doesn’t extend to quality of life (or in extreme cases, not mudering clinicians), but I guess somehow in their hierarchy of need that makes sense.

  35. Annie

    Can I ask a really honest question without sparking an assault on my ignorance or the veracity of my feminism?

    I have always been something of a fence-sitter on this issue of abortion because I can’t stand the totalizing nature of arguments on either side. Sad, because some side would get a rather devoted worker in me. I care a great deal about the health and welfare of women and children.

    From my perhaps absurd perspective, I can never see why (apart from the Matrix theory, which I think I truly subscribe to) it has to be all or nothing on either side. I suppose it comes down to the question of precisely where one would draw the line. In the case of Puffin’s post about the ultrasound machine, I would be just as suspicious of a clinic that was using ultrasound as a means of manipulation as I would of a clinic that had no genuine interest in helping a woman to think through the enormity of terminating a pregnancy.

    I think we identified in some other thread that something in the neighborhood of 50%-60% of pregnancies are unplanned. I am rather bothered by this, as there are limited excuses in this country for not knowing that if you have sex with a male you can get pregnant unintentionally…just like you can get some shitty, life-altering or life-threatening disease. Where are the cooperative studies and brain-pools amongst so-called liberals and conservatives working TOGETHER for the benefit of a society they share? All of the resources that are spend fighting and subverting each other could be put to collective good use, perhaps, if liberals weren’t so worried about interacting with conservatives (particularly religious ones) and if the conservatives could learn to give freely into communities without the an underlying religious mission. If that lady in Puffin’s town opened her clinic and made it clear that it was a faith-based project, it wouldn’t be the kind of thing I’d find bothersome…provided they made their purpose CLEAR to a woman from the beginning–1) that NO abortions would be performed, endorsed, or subsidized there, 2) that their mission was a spiritual one, 3) that IF the woman decided to keep her pregnancy LEGITIMATE, QUALITY resources and support would be forth-coming throughout the course of the pregnancy and beyond (though clearly my requirement hers is a big problem because the pregnancy only lasts a few months, the kid lasts…a LONG time, 4) and IF a woman chose to terminate her pregnancy elsewhere she would be WELCOMED and ENCOURAGED even to return there for post-abortion counseling that was non-judgmental.

    I don’t tend to care much if churches want to advertise their spiritual wares through the provision of health and education services…as long as they are up front about it. These “clever” ruses, IMHO, smack of the sort of deceit that is considered so UN-Christian in every other circumstance. If the cause is truly a righteous one then it should be able to stand in the open and achieve its success or failure legitimately and honestly. From my perspective, churches are supposed to offer helpful, real-life services to the community. They are entitled to promote their version, but it should be done out in the open. If no one comes, they can go to bed at night with clean consciences in their own economy.

  36. Puffin

    Annie, you’re thinking too hard about all this. No fence sitting is necessary on “the issue of abortion” unless you find yourself in the unfortunate position of having to decide whether or not to have one. And then you’re only going to get to fence sit for so long because you can’t be neutral on a moving train. (Mixing metaphors is FUN!)

    Now, if you can think about it NOT in terms of “the issue of abortion” and rather in terms of what all this REALLY is – the issue of women’s right to decide what does and does not happen with their bodies – then I think you may find it a bit easier to take a firm stand.

  37. Shy Girl

    Speaking for myself, I feel that being pro-choice rather than pro-life or pro-abortion (which I don’t think actually exists) suggests support for educated, healthy choice, rather than pushing one absolute or another.

    What I know about the pro-choice movement is that it is in support of education about contraceptives and about a woman’s options should these precautions fail (one being abortion). Conversely, I have never heard of a pro-life movement that encouraged education about contraceptive measures (and the rhythm method does not count) or how to care for and support a child after it is born, especially in the case of single mothers.

    For me it is clearly an issue of the right to choose, and to have safe and healthy options to choose from.

  38. Annie

    Thanks, Puffin and Shy Girl, for treating me kindly here because I always feel very sad and sick inside whenever I think of women with unwanted pregnancies. It’s got to be terrifying.

    The issue of dominion over one’s own body is where I always find myself placing a pretty long arm away from pro-lifers. I do understand their view of the fetus as a living creature, even at conception, but I’m unconvinced that it helps anyone to try and import and defend a separate set of state-sponsored rights to a being that cannot survive apart from the mother. They lose me entirely there.

    HUGE digression here: I think that faith communities can do much more in the community to help lower the alarming number of unwanted pregnancies. If the argument is that we are a society of loose-morals and bad values, do something useful to help women become better stewards of their bodies. Kick abusive husbands out of your congregations and help bring them to justice; stop using marriage and pregnancy as the ultimate tool of female validation. Help women gain access to quality educations and jobs. Help them to respect their bodies as more than just the site of future baby-making and husband-pleasing. That kind of stuff. I don’t care if the churches don’t want to give out their funds to support abortions or discourage them. They are as entitled as anyone to espouse their ideology, but don’t complain about the evils of society and leave those evils at the doorsteps of women whom they have never truly supported. THAT burns me! WHERE are the INTENSE programs in churches that teach MEN how to RESPECT something other than their penises? END DIGRESSION

    I guess my real funk in the whole thing is divided into two sets of concerns, one that is about ultimate dominion over one’s body,which ought to be unquestioned, and one that is just as contentious and the root of many debates, methinks…funds…i.e.,who should foot the bill for the termination of unwanted pregnancies.

    What role should the government play in collecting and distributing resources for terminating a pregnancy? Is it the government’s obligation to make funds available for on-demand abortions? Who should be eligible to use those resources? What conditions, if any, should apply?

    I’ve often had the sneaking suspicion that the question of who writes the check is much more important to a lot of people than the issue of whether or not a woman can receive safe affordable health-care. My argument has always been that IF the faith communities had genuine respect for women and made MEN the social and cultural pariahs of unwanted pregnancies, the number of them would decrease significantly. Connect that action with programs and services that helped women to respect themselves as something other than married baby-machines, and I’ll bet the number decreases even further. Perhaps a lot of us would be much less bitter and suspicious of religious faith if it took the lead in supporting, nurturing, and caring for women as human beings of equal value and import alongside men…and for purposes beyond wifery and motherhood.

    I’m sure I sound like a total ass. Thanks for thinking “aloud” with me and not slamming me.

  39. Pony

    Some women get all mushy over children as they get older. I’m the opposite. Although I don’t deny anyone the right to have or not-have a child, or have an abortion or not, I know with cold clarity I could put a pillow over its face if I had to. Now. Perhaps not when 28 and had different hormones running around me. I have sympathy for mothers who kill their unwanted babies, or leave them somewhere, or give them to relatives to raise. Not for those who torture them or neglect them though.

    I have also been known to grab the suffering whatever and snap its neck while onlookers stood by gasping, not knowing what to do about the road pizza. Maybe I’m a miscreant. That’s it; a post-menopausal hyper-orgasmic miscreant who doesn’t goo over babies.

  40. trope

    Twisty, I don’t know what could have led you to believe that the PP clinic wasn’t aware of the fake clinic’s presence, especially considering that the story you cited is from a PP “blog”. Fake crisis pregnancy centers are VERY good at skirting advertising requirements, using ambiguous language, and calling their lawyers every time someone looks at them funny. PP can educate women about deceptive clinics and support policy that would force them to tell the truth in their advertising, but isn’t very well going to go over and put glue in their locks.

    When you drive by and see these two clinics side by side, which one stinks of patriarchy? Let’s go blame that one.

  41. Twisty

    OK, for the last time: I WAS JOKING. You know what a joke is, I’m sure, even if you are feminists: Raillery. Jest. Dare I say it? Yes! Farce! For comic effect, to excite some small amusement, I concoct a preposterous scenario as a gag. Even though I am in full possession of the actual facts! Great Scott, you’re all acting like a) I bombed some fucking clinic personally, and b) Planned Parenthood is some unmockable manifestation of God. Get a grip, group.

  42. Ledasmom

    So, is it going to seem too much like butt-kissing if I say, quietly, that I thought it was pretty funny?
    I’m too tired to look up Massachusetts law on the matter (we spent today at the zoo, because Jane Goodall was speaking there), so I don’t know if a non-abortion clinic is allowed to be deceptive in its physical presentation, but I believe they’re specifically forbidden to advertise in the Yellow Pages under “Abortion”; they have their own little section entitled “Abortion Alternatives”.

  43. Kate

    OK Annie, here’s my thoughts:

    1) IN a society where many women still don’t hold the power to make choices about how and when they will have sex in a relationship, women will have pregnancies that they do not want and often may not be able to handle emotionally, economically or physically.

    2) In a society where rape and incest are rampant, women and young girls will have pregnancies occur that they did not want. To expect that a women or young girl traumatize her body and mind further by being forced to carry the seed of her rapist is beyond cruel and unusual punishment in my mind.

    3) In a society where teenage girls are pressured to have sex as early as 12 or 13 and yet are almost completely reliant upon the willingness or interest of their parents to inform them of birth control methods and attainment, unwanted pregnancies will occur.

    4) In a society where speaking about sexuality and sexual activities is embarrassing to some and possibly the cause of fear of harm in others, unwanted and unplanned pregnancies will occur.

    Making abortion illegal conpletely or even with conditions, will mean that women will have to stand before a judge and describe in lurid detail the sexual activity that caused their pregnancy. The consequences of such public disclosure will of course, be borne by her alone.

    THe fact that anyone would even consider that a pregnant woman should have to stand before a judge or some other party and explain how they incurred the pregnancy and every other lurid detail speaks volumes about how little our society cares about women and their experiences. it also speaks volumes for how little our society values a woman’s ability to make her own decisions about her life and how our society (partriarchy) has no problem asserting that they should be involved in every aspect of a women’s life.

    mind you, no one asks a man to step forward before a panel of women and justify his order of viagra.

    To belittle the physical, social and economic consequences of carrying a child to term, not only belittles the experience of child rearing completely. The anti-choicers focus on glossy Dr. Spock-like, middle class images of children, completely downplaying and trivializing the work and lifetime committment that child rearing is.

    To ban abortion or make its services less available by legal means ( already effectively taken place by coercion), would be to relegate unfairly, women and women only, to a life of servitude economically, socially and physically to a child for which that women has no way to guarantee support for from the absent parent.

    For many woman to include the father or even her family in the process of her decision making, or to have to include them in the rearing and upbringing process of raising a child, could lead to undue harm and abuse for a lifetime, much less possibly for the child as well.

    Annie figure this: Those who wage the war against abortion rights also have supported wars against:

    Funding for government support of single mothers who cannot affort the resources to care for a child
    Funding for enforcement of child support laws
    Funding for making birth control available free or cheap so that all woman can afford it
    Funding for birth control and sex education
    Funding for affordable health insurance initiatives
    Funding for teen pregnancy prevention programs which usually target females

    Also, consider that women still on average, earn only .75 to every dollar a man makes, which means that her ability to afford to care for a child on her own is 24% less. That’s over an average, which means that high earner women are included in that number, which skews the fact that most women who are forced to have a child whether they like it or not, are by and large, low income women who can even more ill afford to support a child alone.

    Since fundies believe that all women should stay at home and not work
    That all women should not get divorced
    That all woman should not pursue careers
    that all woman should live under the control of a man

    Also consider that still, in almost all households, the woman still assumes the major duties of child care, without help or pay and with no right to demand that the other party that helped bring the child into the world help raise it, with the exception of child support, which is a joke anyway.

    pro-choice means just that; leaving the choice to have an abortion or not solely with the woman. it is the core of women’s rights and the stomping it out is the at the core of attacking women’s sovreignty and economic freedom.

  44. Kate

    25% I meant.

    Twisty, I for one liked your humor and was going to add to it. Glad I didn’t.

    I interviewed another possible sub the other day. he’s a frickin’ godbag it turns out. That’s another as my plumber is too. mind you, nice people as i don’t get it their political shit as they haven’t a frickin’ clue and could care less because they are going to heaven anyway.

    They are everywhere and they believe they are right, it is the core of christianity; chauvinism complete.

  45. mythago

    OK, for the last time: I WAS JOKING.

    Well, you know how we feminists are: no sense of humor.

  46. Annie

    Thanks Kate. Kind of you to be patient with me whilst I think about things in a venue without being yelled at. Everytime I’ve tried to slog through my thoughts with people they end up yelling…not matter what they are “pro”

  47. partiarchmember

    I see these “pregnancy crisis centers” all the time. The one that sticks out the most in my mind is just south (walking distance) of the Ivy Tech campus. I don’t know if that is the one, in truth, I doubt it is. Just saying in case you’re wondering what they look like. I’m pretty sure there are more around, as conservative as this town is.

    And yes, it is a somewhat crappy neighborhood.

    The weird thing about this story is that I was directed here from a social news website. Even though I am familiar with these crisis centers, I imagined that this bad situation was happening somewhere else. I never imagined it would be my home state. You always think and hope that the problem is somewhere else…

  1. Figuring out the difference the criminal and victim has never been so hard at Pandagon

    [...] In further news of how people completely forget how to tell the difference between assailant and victim when the subject of women and sex comes up, I found this charming little tale at Twisty’s blog, that was originally from an email campaign from Planned Parenthood’s. Basically, anti-choice front organizations called “crisis pregnancy centers” are setting up near clinics that offer abortions and hoping that the occasional patient would accidentally wander into their office where they could pounce on their new prey. This happened to a pregnant teenage girl and her mother and this is what happened: The group took down the girl’s confidential personal information and told her to come back for her appointment, which they said would be in their “other office” (the real Planned Parenthood office nearby). When she arrived for her appointment, not only did the Planned Parenthood staff have no record of her, but the police were there — the “crisis pregnancy center” had called them, claiming that a minor was being forced to have an abortion against her will. [...]

  2. Daylight Atheism » Have You No Sense of Decency?

    [...] (The full text of this story and additional commentary can be found at I Blame the Patriarchy, as well as an action alert from Planned Parenthood.) [...]

  3. More On Bogus Abortion Clinics at I Blame The Patriarchy

    [...] Homegirl Amanda Marcotte has written a gripping piece for AlterNet on the vexing proliferation of those fake “pregnancy crisis clinics” I mumbled about last month. The skin crawls as she reveals how these anti-choice “clinics,” many of which have no medical personnel on staff, hoover up women who are trying to cope with unwanted pregnancies and proceed to, among other things, screw them out of necessary information and proper prenatal care. “Texas taxpayers,” she writes, using our oft-backwards state as an example, “are being asked to pony up $5 million to an organization [the Texas Pregnancy Care Network, which is getting a government grant to abet the women-as-sex-class mandate] that provides no services apart from furthering an outsider political agenda.” [...]

  4. sonitus.org » Blog Archive » Exposing Anti-Choice Abortion Clinics

    [...] According to a recent Planned Parenthood email, a 17-year-old girl mistakenly walked into a crisis pregnancy center thinking it was Planned Parenthood, which was next door. “The group took down the girl’s confidential personal information and told her to come back for her appointment, which they said would be in their ‘other office’ (the real Planned Parenthood office nearby).” [...]

  5. Obama admininistration to end "conscience" rule for health workers - Page 3 - SLUniverse Forums

    [...] to a recent Planned Parenthood email, a 17-year-old girl mistakenly walked into a crisis pregnancy center thinking it was Planned [...]

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