Abortion Provider Calls the Waaahmbulance November 1, 2015Posted by geoff in News.
Dr. Diane Horvath-Cosper had a sad opinion piece in the Washington Post this morning, complaining about violence against abortion providers:
I am an obstetrician-gynecologist. Among the many medical services I provide my patients, I perform abortions for women who need them. That’s made me a target for harassment online and in person over the course of my career. Unfortunately, my experience is not the exception among my colleagues who perform what the Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled is a legal medical procedure in all 50 states.
It is absolutely true that violence or threats of violence against abortion providers are not appropriate forms of protest, and in that respect I have a full measure of sympathy for Dr. Horvath-Cosper’s position. It’s the exaggeration of the threat that bugs me.
For example, what is this intimidation to which she has been subjected? She was included in an anti-abortion site’s database:
…I found myself in a new and terrifying place: an anti-choice Web site that claims I am part of an “abortion cartel.” In addition to my office address and links to find my medical license numbers, it features several photos of me.
But that’s it. Prior to that she was in a secure abortion facility with security guards . . . but nothing ever happened.
So she’s terrified of having been doxxed along with 972 of her peers, although every bit of information they posted about her was pulled from linkedin and social media sites.
The anti-abortion site itself says that its purpose is to identify abortion providers and the legal actions against them, so that abusive doctors can be removed from practice. There are no actions listed against Dr. H-C, but I checked a couple other profiles and they do indeed list the “health code violations, abortion injuries, malpractice claims, disciplinary action, and criminal conduct” that abortiondocs.org claims are its mission.
She then goes on to note that:
In the past two decades, 13 physicians or staff members at abortion-providing facilities have been killed or seriously injured.
This is, of course, awful, but the statistic is pretty misleading. Why go back two decades? Because in the past 17 years, only 1 physician or staff member has been killed or seriously injured.
While arson and property crime have continued (at the pace of a handful of incidents per year), violence against abortion providers seems to have waned dramatically since the mid-90’s. Which means Dr. H-C is a couple of decades late to be wringing her hands over her safety.
The last straw was this little bit of melodrama:
I fear for the safety of my child. I worry that protesters may someday show up at her day care, focused on hurting her as a way to punish me. Seeing her face on the anti-choice Web site made me consider that maybe she would be safer living apart from me and that my presence in her life might cause her more harm than good. While I refuse to be intimidated from doing my job, this assault on my confidence as a mother has been particularly distressing.
You know, Dr. H-C, the whole point of the anti-abortion philosophy is to protect children. That’s the underlying issue – that you care less for unborn children’s lives than they do. So who exactly needs to be protected from whom?
I’m sure Dr. H-C is a caring mother and provider, but her approach to resolving the conflict is quite authoritarian: the morality of abortion is unquestionable, so all anti-abortion activists should stop calling her names and protesting her work. Sorry, Doc, but everybody gets a voice. Violence is over the top, of course, but they can call you whatever they want.
No matter how histrionic you may be.