This is pretty scary: An anonymous Republican senator has put a hold on a resolution condeming clinic violence. Apparently this guy can’t even bring himself to declare that killing doctors is wrong. The resolution in its entirety reads:
Whereas Dr. George Tiller of Wichita, Kansas was shot to death at church on Sunday, May 31;
Whereas there is a history of violence against providers of reproductive health care, as health care employees have suffered threats and hostility in order to provide crucial services to patients;
Whereas the threat or use of force or physical obstruction has been used to injure, intimidate, or interfere with individuals seeking to obtain or provide health care services; and
Whereas acts of violence are never an acceptable means of expression and always shall be condemned:
Now, therefore, be it Resolved, That the Senate— (1) Expresses great sympathy for the family, friends and patients of Dr. George Tiller; (2) Recognizes that acts of violence should never be used to prevent women from receiving reproductive health care; and (3) Condemns the use of violence as a means of resolving differences of opinion.
Not at all controversial.
We’ve written a lot about the anti-choice movement here on Feministe and elsewhere, and have long argued that the systematic and ongoing violence against women’s health clinics is not the work of lone wackos, as the mainstream media and anti-choice groups often portray it; rather, fault lies with the mainstream “pro-life” movement and a right-wing political establishment that tacitly condones and even promotes anti-choice violence. This is a pretty good example. Republican Congressmen aren’t out shooting doctors, but they are making it clear that they aren’t going to condemn those who do. That’s a pretty frightening perspective, and it lends credence to those people who do commit violent acts. It leads them to believe that they are supported by the Republican party, corporate media and the pro-life establishment.
And they are.
It’s not just an anonymous Congressman obstructing a resolution on clinic violence. It’s Joe Scarborough — now on the “liberal” network MSNBC — defending doctor-killer Michael Griffin pro-bono (Gunn had an attorney, so this wasn’t a matter of a man needing representation. It was Scarborough seeking out the case and voluntarily taking it on, until he was removed). It’s the National Right-to-Life Committee giving Scarborough $15,210 the next year, helping him to win a Congressional seat. Heck, the senior policy advisor of Operation Rescue herself went to prison for two years for conspiring to bomb a California abortion clinic.
The support for anti-choice violence is strong and deep. It’s in the mainstream “pro-life” movement, and it’s in the Republican party. The GOP should be ashamed right now.
- “Pro-Life” groups to honor murderers by Jill June 20, 2007
- Kansas AG’s harassment of an abortion provider fails again by Jill December 26, 2006
- Republicans Hate Babies by Jill July 24, 2007
- Abortion and Health Care: Is there common ground? by Jill August 10, 2009
- Dr. Tiller’s Clinic Will Remain Closed by Cara June 9, 2009