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Abortion Provider Calls the Waaahmbulance November 1, 2015

Posted by geoff in News.
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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.

Comments»

1. phubbard314 - November 30, 2015

Great timing posting this in early November 2015! I bet you feel like an idiot in the wake of Colorado Springs. If you do not, then let me make it very clear and confirm for you that you are indeed an idiot.

2. geoff - November 30, 2015

Not really, particularly until the entire story comes out. Only idiots leap to conclusions like you just did. And everything I said was true, and remains true. So suck it, knee-jerk illogician.

phubbard314 - December 9, 2015

Great job on your response to my comment! You accused me of being a knee-jerk illogician (fun fact: that’s not a real word!) because I made the giant inferential leap from an act of domestic terrorism, in which the self-avowed Christian gunman tells us his motivation was ideologically motivated against abortion providers, to the conclusion that his motivation was ideologically motivated against abortion providers. Now, I know that is a heavy intellectual lift for you, so let me help you with the latest. Today, in his arraignment, Robert Dear yelled, “I am a warrior for the babies!” and, ““I am guilty, there will be no trial.” So now that the “story has come out” as you indicated, we can now confirm with even more clarity than before that you are in fact an idiot.

But let’s not stop there. Let’s examine your misleading and hateful blog post. You say that “in the past 17 years, only 1 physician or staff member has been killed or seriously injured,” yet you conveniently ignore the 11 actual arsons, bombings, or property crimes in the same timeframe, much less the hundreds of threats against health clinics for women. And this is the fundamental flaw in your post. Who the fuck are you to say she is exaggerating HER fear for her safety, when there is a clear pattern of aggression, violence, and threats toward her profession as a health services provider, which includes a small number of abortions, a legal and Constitutionally upheld health right?

I’ll go a step further and posit that by seeking to intimidate abortion providers and shut down all legal and Constitutionally upheld abortions, you will simply push women to use unsafe and illegal means to end their pregnancies. When legal abortions aren’t available, poor women tend to utilize illicit drugs, illegal clinics and even beatings or wire hangers to self-abort, putting themselves in immense danger. Similarly, rich women tend to travel out of country to avail themselves of abortion services in countries with far more liberal abortion policies. This is empirically verifiable across numerous countries by reviewing studies by the WHO. There is no such thing as no abortion; there is only safe and unsafe abortion.

Please try to wrap your head around that truth and the truth that your posting is hateful, counterproductive to your cause, and also illogical. Oh, and suck it.

3. lauraw - December 9, 2015

Geoff’s post was about the right to protest. We have the right to protest.

4. phubbard314 - December 9, 2015

Please re-read, this time for comprehension.

5. lauraw - December 9, 2015

We have the right to protest an organization that murders and cuts human babies up and sells their parts for profit, which is against the law, and morally abhorrent.

http://thefederalist.com/2015/09/17/watch-the-video-planned-parenthood-and-its-media-allies-deny-exists/

6. Sobek - December 10, 2015

Geoff, it’s to bad you’re such a dummy. If only you had, say, an advanced degree in the hard sciences. Maybe you wouldn’t be so dumb.

7. geoff - December 10, 2015

fun fact: that’s not a real word!

That’s some might fine sleuthing there, Captain Obvious. You could have saved yourself some useless typing had you noticed that your Duh-meter was already pegged at 11.

So now that the “story has come out” as you indicated, we can now confirm with even more clarity than before that you are in fact an idiot.

The story still emerges, the most salient aspect being: is this fellow sane or the complete whack-a-mole he seems to be? But yes, it appears now that the original vague reports have been corroborated and that he perceives himself as some sort of Christian anti-abortion warrior, though I doubt any Christian organization will claim him.

yet you conveniently ignore the 11 actual arsons, bombings, or property crimes in the same timeframe, much less the hundreds of threats against health clinics for women

I called her out for cherry-picking her data, which she absolutely did. If you want me to conduct a complete analysis of violence against abortion clinics, pay me. It’d probably be worth it to you, since I think your “11” number is low, and I don’t think you understand statistics.

You also seem to have missed this paragraph:

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.

Who the fuck are you to say she is exaggerating HER fear for her safety

I’m the guy who actually read her article and was irritated by her magnification of the threat. I don’t like people who cherry-pick data or who pretend that somebody assembling public information in a database is a direct threat to them. Nor people who imply that legal protests should be squelched.

I’ll go a step further

Naturally you would, since it’s completely irrelevant and logically unjustified. Blither on as much as you want about back-alley abortions – it has nothing to do with what I’m talking about, and I have no interest in discussing it. I said at the outset that violence and threats have no place in the abortion discussion, so there’s no point in accusing me of supporting the intimidation of abortion providers.

Oh, and suck it.

Since this is now becoming a standard close in this thread, I’ll encourage you to do likewise.

This is pretty much it for you – you’ve said your piece and started rambling off into irrelevant and boring side discussions. Don’t come back – if you do, I’ll just delete everything you wrote or will write.


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